(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "A supplement to Dodsley's Old plays"

Google 



This is a digital copy of a book that was preserved for generations on library shelves before it was carefully scanned by Google as part of a project 

to make the world's books discoverable online. 

It has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one that was never subject 

to copyright or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 

are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often difficult to discover. 

Marks, notations and other maiginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 

publisher to a library and finally to you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud to partner with libraries to digitize public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order to keep providing tliis resource, we liave taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial parties, including placing technical restrictions on automated querying. 
We also ask that you: 

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request that you use these files for 
personal, non-commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain fivm automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort to Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attributionTht GoogXt "watermark" you see on each file is essential for in forming people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 
countries. Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liabili^ can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through the full text of this book on the web 

at |http: //books .google .com/I 



V. 



A SUPPLEMENT 



•n) 



DODSLEY'S OLD PLAYS. 



VOL. II. 



p.. 



f-- 



J. 



» A SUPPLEMENT 



TO 



DODSLEY'S OLD PLAYS. 



KUITCD BY 



THOMAS AMYOT, J. PAYNE COLLIER, W. DURRANT COOPER, 

REV. A. DYCE, BARRON FIELD, J. 0. HALLIWELL, 

AND THOMAS WRIGHT. 



IN FOUR VOLUMES. 



VOL. 11. 

COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 
MARRIAGE OF WIT AND WISDOM. 
MORAL PLAY OF WIT AND SCIENCE. 



PRLNTED FOR THE SHAKESPEARE SOCICTY, 

AXD TO BK HAD OF 

W. SKEFFINGTON, AGENT TO THE SOCIETY, 192, PICCADILLY. 

1853. 



138151 



IA)NIK>N : 
RRADBVRY AND EVANS, PBlNrER.-*, WIIITEKRIAIU*. 













• 

• 

• • 
• 
• 


• • • • • • 

• • • • • • 


• •• • 

• • • 
• • • 

*•• • 


• 
• 
• 
• 
• • • 










• • 

•••• 


* • 


> • • • 
» • •• 
» • •• 
* m • • 
» •• • 


• 
• 


• 
• 
• 


• •••; • •••,•• • • • 

• •••*•* •• •• •• 


... 

.." 
... 


• • • 
« • 1 


1 • [ 


• • 4 
» •• • 
» • • « 
» • • • < 










• 
• 


• 
• 

• • 

• 

• 


• • • 
• 
• 
• 
• 


• ••• ••• .••' 

• .«. 


• • • 

• • • 

• • • 

• • • 

• • 


. . 
• • 


« . 

• • 

• • 
• • 












il8 \r^t^/^^\. ^ 



BSm^up 









-fr o So^^&^ ^(0 ^ <f^^ ^yfo 













'jfakftat *•'■ ■•« Zr^'y 



LUDUS COVENTRI^. 

9 CaIItct(on of mvnttrita, 

FORMERLY REPRESENTED AT COVENTRY 

ON THE 

FBAST OP COEPUS CHEISTI. 



JAMES ORCHARD HALLIWELL, ESQ. F.R.S. 

HON. M.R.I.A., F.S.A., F.R.A.S., &c. 




LONDON: 
PRINTED FOR THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY. 



LONDON : 

P. tHOBBEL, JUN., 61, RUPBBT BTMBBT* HATMABKBT, 

PRINTER TO H. R. H. PRINCE ALBERT. 



COUNCIL 



OP 



THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY. 



THE MOST NOBLE THE MARQUESS OF NORMANBT. 

BT. HON. LORD BRATBROOKE, F.SJk. 
BT. HON. LORD F. EGERTON, M.P. 
RT. HON. THE EARL OF OLEN6ALL. 
RT. HON. LORD LEIGH. 

AMTOT, THOMAS, ESQ., F.R.S., TREAS. S. A. 

AYRTON, WILLIAM5 ESQ., F.R.S., F. S.A. 

BRUCE, JOHN, ESQ., F.S.A. 

CAMPBELL, THOMAS, ESQ. 

COLLIER, J. PAYNE, ESQ., F.S.A., DIRECTOR. 

COURTENAY, RT. HON. THOMAS P. 

CRAIK, GEORGE L., ESQ. 

DILKE, C. W., ESQ., TREASURER. 

DYCE, REV. ALEXANDER. 

HALLIWELL, J. O., ESQ., F.R.S. F.S.A., &C. 

HARNESS, REV. WILLIAM. 

JERROLD, DOUGLAS, ESQ. 

KENNEY, JAMES, ESQ. 

KNIGHT, CHARLES, ESQ. 

MACREADY, WILLIAM C, ESQ. 

MADDEN, SIR F., F.R.S., F.S.A., KEEPER OF THE MSS. 

IN THE BRITISH MUSEUM. 
MILMAN, REV. HENRY HART. 
TALFOURD, MR. SERGEANT, M.P. 
TOMLINS, F. GUEST, ESQ., SECRETARY. 
WRIGHT, THOMAS, ESQ., F.S.A. 
YOUNG, CHARLES M., ESQ. 



INTRODUCTION. 



Three complete collections of ancient English mys-* 
teries have descended to modern times, or rather 
are now known to he preserved, which are generally 
distinguished by the titles of the Chester, the Townley, 
and the Coventry Mysteries ; and, with the exception 
of a few detached pieces of far inferior importance, 
we derive nearly all our actual knowledge of the 
early English drama from these series of plays, which 
have been long known to every one interested in 
this class of literary pursuits, as some of the most 
curious and valuable relics of bygone times; not 
merely as important records of our early stage, but also 
as illustrating, in a very interesting manner, the customs, 
language, and manners of the periods to which they be- 
long. The only one of these series (which is, perhaps, 
the most important of all), that has yet been printed, is 
the Townley, which was published by the Surtees So- 
ciety, with a very interesting and learned preface by 
Mr. Hunter. The Coventry is contained in the follow- 
ing volume ; and the Chester, so ably commented upon 
by Mr. Markland, a gentleman to whom belongs the dis- 
tinction of being the first in recent times to direct public 



n INTEODUCTION. 

attention to these researches, has already been unJn' 
the consideration of the Council of the Society under 
whose auspices the present volume is produced. • 

Mr. Collier, in the second volume of his excellent 
History of English Dramatic Poetry, has carefully ana- 
lyzed the Coventry Mysteries, with occasional notices 
of resemblauces or dissimilarities in the method in vrhich 
the same subjects are treated in the other collections. 
It will, therefore, be unnecessary for me in this place to 
enter on the general question of the chain in the evi- 
dence of dramatic history which these mysteries afford. 

The Coventry Mysteries are contained in a quarto 
volume, the principal part of which was written in the 
year 1468, now preser\ed in the Cottonian collection of 
manuscripts, under the press-mark Vespas. D. viil. The 
date of the MS. is ascertained from the verso of fol, 
100, a fac-simile of which page will be found at the 
commencement of this work. The history of the manu- 
script is unfortunately wrapped in obscurity, and it 
cannot be distinctly tmced back to those who are pre- 
sumed to have been its former possessors — the Grey 
Friars of Coventry. The principal authority for its ap- 
propriation to this body is contained in the following 
memonmdura on the fly-leaf of the manuscript in the 
hand-wi-iting of Dr. Richard James, librarian to Sir 



* I am not without hopes of one or two more coUcctionB tumiDg 
up. In MS. Addit- 4791. fol. 157. la given a list of the plays re- 
presented at Dublin on Corpus Chrieti day, 1468, which differs ma- 
terially from ihe contents of any known aeries. The play of the 
" Sacrifice of Ahruham," in Trinity College, Dublin, may be one of 
thcae. It bos been printed by Mr. Collier. 



INTRODUCTION. 



IS 



Jtob^ Cotton :—" Contenta Novi Teetamenti soenioe 
expressa et actitata oUm per monachos siye fratres 
mendicantes : rulgo dicitur hie liber Ludus Coventrize, 
fflve LudQs Corporis Christi ; scribitur metris Anglica- 
nis." The MS. ■was previously in the possession of 
Bohert Hegge of Christ Church, Oxford, who died in 
l629i * and was, most probably, purchased by James 
aboat that time for Cottou, as it appears from a letter 
in the same library f that James was engaged about 
that period at Oxford in procuring manuscripts for bis 
p&tron. 

Jomea, in his MS. collection.^ in the Bodleian, does 
not notice the MS. of the Ludus Coventri^, and I have 
been unsuccessful in endeavouring to trace either the 
destination of Hegge's library, or the authority for 
James's assertion that this volume was commonly (vulgo 
dicitur) known under the above title. J That it was so, 
there cannot, I imagine, be the slightest doubt, for what 
object could Jameg — a man who was, most probably, 
uninterested about the subject of the manuscript, and 

* Wood's Atbeace, by Blia, vol. L., p. 458. Hegge does not 
allude to the MS. in any of hia writings. 

t MS. Cotton. Juliiu, C. iii., fol. 193. James was then resident 
at Oxford. 

X In the old catalogue of the CoHonian library, commenced in the 
year 1621, in MS. Harl. 6018, there id no notice of the present MS. 
I find, however, in a list of books " lent out of my study liefor this 
23 April], 1G21," an enlry which may be interesting to the reader ; 
" .^Ifricus Grammar Saxon to Ben; Jonson." This was doubtlessly 
" the most ancient grammar written in the Saxon tongue and cha- 
racter," which Kynaston saw in his hands. See Gifford's Jonson, 
vol. ix., p. 251. 



J 



k 



Vlll INTRODUCTION. 

inserted the account above giyen as Cotton's librarian, 
accordiug to his usual custom — have had ia making a 
misrepresentation ? It must be remembered, also, that 
the kst leaf, or, perhaps, the last few leaves, are now 
deficient, and there is no improbability in the conjecture 
that these may not have been lost when James wrote 
his deacription, and that a colophon supplied him with 
his information, 

Robert Heggc has given as his autograph in two places, 
and in both added the cognomen of " Duuelmensis." 
On this account, some writers have conjectured that the 
volume originally came from Durham ; but this suppo- 
eition is not supported by any e\'idence and very little 
probability. The principal mark of dialect which the 
Mysteries contain, viz., .y for sh in such words as xa/, 
j^lde, kc, belong to that part of the countiy in which 
Coventry is situated. 

If, then, we have not complete and absolute evidence 
that Ludiis CoventrifB is the proper title of these Mys- 
teries, yet the probabilities are greatly in favour of the 
correctness of this appellation, and no urgent reasons 
have been given for any different conclusion. By this 
name, at all events, the MS. has been known since the 
time of Dr. James, who died in 1639- 

The external evidence is also greatly in favour of the 
claim of Coventry to these plays. Coventry was a place 
formerly famous for the performance of its Corpus Christi 
plays by the Grey Friars, in the same manner as Chester 
was for the perfonnancesof its trading companies. Mr. 
Sliarp's Dissertation on the Covmlty Mt/iieries, 4to., 
Cov. 1816, contains a most curious and valuable coUec- 



INTRODUCTION. 



tion of infonnatioa* relative to the plays onoe performed 
there, aud the manner in which the actors were 
dressed. In 1456, Queen Margaret was at Coventry, 
when she saw " alle the pagentes pleyde save domes- 
day, which mig:ht not be pleyde for lak of day." Even 
as late as 1575, " certain good harted men of Coven- 
tree" had the honour of performing before Queen Eliza- 
beth in the celebrated entertainment at Kenilworth, 
and gained considerable applause.f And Heywood, in 
a passage which has been frequently quoted, aUudes to 
the devil as a famous character in the old Coventry 
mysteries : — 



" For aa good happc wolde have it channce, 
Thys devyll and I were of olde acqueyntBiuice ; 
For oft, in the play of Corpus Cbriati, 
He hath played the devyll at Coventry.") 



i 



The Coventry ilyeteriea attracted the attention of 
the antiquary, Dugdale, at an early period, and he has 
given OS the following curious aud important account of 
them : — 

" Before the suppression of the monasteries, this city 
was very famous for the pageants that were play'd 
therein, upon Corpus-Cbristi day ; which occasioning 
very great confluence of people thither from far and 

* Collected ftom the records of the corporation. Mr. Sharp hEis 
also printed a Coventry play of a later date, which does not con- 
tain the dialectical peculiarity mentioned above, 

f Laneham's Letter, 12mo. Lond, 157S, p. 3*2. 

I P/ayc called the foure P P. s'lg. d. ii. Sharp has given us 
y partieularE relative to this character. See also Collier's Hist, 
Dram. Poet. vol. ii. p. 262.266. 



X INTRODUCTION. 

near, was of ao small beaefit therto ; which pageants 
being acted with mighty state and reverence by the 
friers of this house, had theaters for the severall scenes, 
very large and high, placed upon wheels, and drawn to 
all the eniiuent parts of the city, for the better advan- 
tage of spectators : and contaiu'd the story of the New- 
Testament, composed into old English Bithme, as ap- 
peareth by an ancient MS. [in bibl. Cotton, sub effigie 
Vesp. D. 9-] intituled Ludus Coi-poris Chrisli, othudus 
Coventrite, I have been told by some old people, who 
in their younger years were eye-witnesses of these 
pageants so acted, that the yearly confluence of people 
to see that shew was extraordinary great, and yielded 
no small advantage to this city."* — Diigdale's Anti- 
quities of Warwickshire, fol. Lond. 1656, p. 116, col, 1. 
I scarcely think, however, that this notice of the 

* The reader viU not perhaps be displeased to see this paeeage as 
it BtandE in the original MS. of Dugdalc's work : — " Before the sup- 
pression of the moDBateries, this cittye waa very famous for the 
pageants that were pby'd therein upon Corpus Chrisli day. These 
pageants were acted with mighty state and reverence hy the fryers of 
this house, bqJ conteyned the story of the New Testament which 
was composed into old English rime. The theatres for the several] 
scenes were very large and high ; and, being placed upon wbeelea, 
were drawne to all the eminent places of the cittye, for the better 
advantage of the spectators, la that incomparable library belonging 
to Sir Thomas Cotton, there la yet one of the bookea which petleyned 
to this pageant, entitled Ludue Corporu CArisli, or Ludus Coventrix. 
1 myaelfe have spoke with some old people who had, in their younger 
yeares, bin eyewitnesses of the^e pageants aoe acted ; from whom 1 
have bin told that the confluence of people from farr and neare to see 
that shew was extraordinary great, and yielded noe small advantage 
to this cittye." 



I 



WTRODUCTION. xi 

MS. affords much evidence in favour of James's title, 
except so far as it shows that Dugdale himself bad iio 
doubt whatever about its correctnesB, It will be ob- 
served that Dugdale does not give a right reference to 
the press-mark of the manuscript, and he had probably 
not examined the volume with much attention, or he 
could scarcely have omitted to notice the following 
passage at the end of the prologue, which has been ad- 
duced to prove that these mysteries were not ex- 
clusively* performed before the " gentyllys and jem- 
anry" of Coventry : — 

" A Sunday next, yf that we may, 

At vj. of the belle we gynne oure play 
la N. towne." 

" The letter N," obsen'es Mr. Collier,f " is placed' 
for the nomen of the town, which was to be filled up as 
occasion required, by tlie person making the pro- 
clamation." If the opinion I have formed of their 
locality be correct, I can account for this by supposing 
that the prologues of the vexillators belong to another 
eeriea of plays, or that these mysteries were occa- 
sionally performed at other places. The summaries of 
the pageants, as given in the prologue, are often con- 
fusedly numbered ; and it must be confessed that the 
eoDcIoBion would suit a company of strolling players 
much better than the venerable order of the Grey 

• " It appears, by the latter end of the prologue, that these plays 
or interludes were not only played at Coventry, but in other towns 
aud places upon occasion." — Wright's Hisloria Histrionica, 8vo. 
Lond. 1699, p. 17. 

t Hielory of Dramatic Poetry, vol. ii, p. 156. 



Xll INTRODUCTION. 

Friara. In the order of the pageants, I have no£^-" 
garded the speeches of the vexillators ; and the divi- 
sions in the MS. being very incorrectlj given, I have 
endeavonred to make bs correct an arrangement as pos- 
eible, taking the two other series of mysteries as my 
guide. 

At the commencement of the twenty-ninth pageant, 
Contcmplatio, an allegorical personage, who acts as 
prologue-speaker, explains the events and moralises on 
occasion, but who is in no way concerned in the action, 
says — 

" We intendyn to procede the matere that we lefte 
the last jere :" 

which proves that the remainder of these pageants were 
not played the same year as the preceding twenty- 
eight mysteries. 

In offering the first edition of the Coventry Mys- 
teries to the members of the Shakespeare Society, I am 
anxious to state that I have endeavoured to give the 
reader as faithful a copy of the original manuscript as 
was possible, with all its errors and defects. These are 
not few, for the MS. is evidently the work of a scribe 
who was not very well acquainted with his copy. He 
makes barbarous work of the few Latin passages which 
occur, and verbal errors are of frequent occurrence ; 
and yet, on mature deliberation, I came to the con- 
clusion that it would be more advisable to leave these 
corrections for the notes, and thus give the reader an 
opportunity of forming his own opinion on passages 
which are certainly corrupt, hut which may possibly ad- 
mit of more than one method of explanation. 



I 



INTRODUCTION. XUl 

The frequent occurrence of the double letter^ in the 
manuscript, and in places where it could not be used for 
the capital letter, implies a dialectical distinction, the 
exact meaning of which has not yet been discoyered. 
I haye carefully preserved them in the text. 

The Glossary will be found useful to those who are 
learned in the philology of our early language, as there 
are many words of very unfirequent occurrence ; but I 
have constructed it more especially with a view to the 
wants of those who have not made our early poetry a 
matter of study. In doing so, I thought that I should 
be consulting the best interests of the Shakespeare So- 
ciety, as a large majority of its members belong, in all 
probability, to the latter class. 

J. 0. Halliwell. 

Alfred Place, London, 

Jane 2l8t, 1841. 



CONTENTS. 



i^^^^>^N^^^<^»^»^>rf»^>^fcrf»i^>^»^»^»^»^»»»^» 



• 

1. Prologue 

S. i. The Creation 


FAGB 

1 

19 


3. ii. The Fall of Man . . 


24 


4. iii. Cain and Abel 


38 


6. iv. Noah'i Flood 


40 


6. y. Abraham's Sacrifice 


49 


7. vi. Moses and the Two Tables 


58 


8. vii. The Prophets 

9. viii. The Barrenness of Anna 


65 
. 70 


10. ix. Mary in the Temple . 

11. z. Mary's Betrothment . 

12. zi. The Salutation and Conception 

13. zii. Joseph's Return 

14. xiii. The Visit to Klizalieth 


79 

90 

. 105 

. 117 

. 124 


15. xiv. The Trial of Joseph and Mary 

16. XV. The Birth of Christ . 


. 131 
. 145 


17. xvi. The Adoration of the Shepherds 

18. xvii. The Adoration of the Magi 

19. xviii. The Purification 


. 156 
. 161 
. 172 


20. xix. The Slaughter of the Innocents 


. 179 


21. XX. Christ disputing in the Temple 

22. xxi. The Baptism of Christ 


. 189 
. 199 


23. xxii. The Temptation . . . . 

24. xxiii. The Woman taken in Adultery 

25. xxiv. Lazarus . . . . 


. 205 
. 213 
. 223 


26. xxY. The Council of the Jews 


. 239 


27. xxvi. The Entry into Jerusalem . 


. 252 



XVI CONTENTS, 

FAGB 

28. xxvii. The Last Supper ..... 269 

29. xjcviii. The Betraying of Christ .... 280 

30. zxix. King Herod ..... 288 

3 1 . xzx. The Trial of Christ .293 

32. zxxi. PUate's Wife's Dream . . . .308 

33. zzxii. The Condemnation and Crucifixion of Christ 311 

34. zxxiii. The Descent into Hell . .329 
36. xzxiv. The Burial of Christ . .331 

36. zzxv. The Resurrection ..... 338 

37. xzzvi. The Three Maries .364 

38. xzzvii. Christ appearing to Mary . 360 

39. zzzviii. The Pilgrim of Emaus .... 864 

40. zzziz. The Ascension .... 377 

41. x]« The Descent of the Holy Ghost .381 

42. xli. The Assumption of the Virgin . . . 388 

43. xlii. Doomsday ...... 401 

44. Notes .407 
46. Glossary . . . 419 



THE 



COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 



Primus vexiUator^ 

Now gracyous God, groundyd of alle goodnesse, 

As thi grete glorie nevyr begynnyng had, 
So thou socour and save alle tho that sytt and sese,./ 

And lystenyth to oure talkyng with sylens stylle and sad, 
ffor we purpose us pertly stylle in this prese. 

The pepyl to plese with pleys ful glad. 
Now lystenyth us, lovely, bothe more and lesse, 
Gentyllys and 3emanry of goodly lyff lad, 
This tyde. 
We xal 30U shewe, as that we kan, 
/How that this werd fifyrst began, 
( And how God made bothe molde and man. 

Iff that 3e wyl abyde. 

Secundum vexiUcUor. 

In the fiyrst pagent, we thenke to play 
How God dede make, thorowe his owyn myth, 

Hevyn so clere upon the fyrst day, 
And therin he sett angelle fful bryth. 

u 



S COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Than angelle with songe, this is no nay, 

Xal worchep God, ^ it is ryth ; 
But Lucyfer, that angelle so gay, 
In suche pompe than is he pyth, 

And set in so grete pride. 
That Goddys sete he gynnyth to take, 
Hese lordys pere hjrmself to make. 
But than he ffallyth a ffend ful blake, 

£from hevyn in helle to a [bide.] 

Tertius vexillator. 

In the secunde pagent by Godys myth. 

We thenke to shewe and pley, be-dene. 
In the other sex days, by opyn syth, 

What thenge was wrought ther xal be sene ; 
How best was made and foule of flyth, "]> 

And last was man made, as I wene ; 
Of mannys o ryb, as I 30W plyth. 

Was woman wrougth mannys make to bene. 
And put in paradyse. 
Ther were floures bothe blew and blake. 
Of alle frutes thei myth ther take, 
Saff frute of cunnyng thei xulde forsake. 
And towche it in no wyse. 

The serpent toke Eve an appyl to byte. 

And Eve toke Adam a mursel of the same, 
Whan thei had do thus a} ens the rewle of ryte. 

Than was oure Lord wrothe and grevyd al with grame, 
Oure Lord gan appose them of ther grete delyte, 

Bothe to askuse hem of that synful blame. 
And than Almyghty God, £for that gret dyspite, 

Assygned hem grevou. peyn, as je xal se in game, , 
In dede, / 

Seraphyn, an angelle gay, 
With brennyng swerd, this is verray, 



PROLOGUE. 

From paradise bete hem away. 

In Bybyl as we rede. 

Primus vexiUaior. 

We purpose to shewe in the thryd pagent. 

The story of Caym and of heee brother Abelle, 
Of here tythynges now be we bent 

In this pagent the trewthe to telle. 
How the tythyng of Abel with fe3rr was brent, 7 

And accept to God, yf 30 wyl dwelle, 
We purpose to shewe, as we have ment. 

And how he was kyllyd of his brother so felle ; 
And than 
How Caym was cursyd in al degr^. 
Of Godys owyn mowthe, ther xal 50 se. 
Of trewe tythyng this may wel be, 

Ex%wXm]plft i»L eYfiOL nMin.> 

Secundui vexilator. 

The iii.^* pagent is now 30W tolde ; 

The ffourte pagent of Noe xal be. 
How God was wrothe with man an molde, 

Because fro synne man dede not fie. 
He sent to Noe an angel bolde, 

A shyp fibr to makyn and swymmen on the se. 
Upon the water bothe wood and coolde. 

And viij. sowles ther savyd xulde be. 

And j. peyre of everiche bestes in brynge. 
Whan xl.** days the flode had iHowe, 
Than sente Noe out a crowe, 
And after hym he sent a dowe, 

That brouth ryth good tydyng. 

Tertiui vexiUator. 

Of Abraham is the fyfte pagent, 
And of Ysaac his sone so fre, 

u 2 



COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

How that he xulde with fere be brent, 
And slayn with swerd, as 30 xal se. 

Abraham toke with good atent 

His sone Ysaac, and knelyd on kne, 

His suerd was than ful redy bent. 

And thouth his chylde ther ofifered xuld be. 
Upon an hylle ful ryflf. 

Than God toke tent to his good wyl. 

And sent an angel ryth sone hym tyl. 

And bad Abraham a shep to kyl. 

And savyd his chyldys lyiF. 

Primus vexiUcUor. 

The sexte pagent is of Moyses, 

And of tweyn tabelys that God hym took. 
In the whiche were wrote, without les. 

The lawes of God to leme and lok. 
And how God charged hym be wordys these. 

The lawes to leme al of that book, 
Moyses than doth nevyr more sese, 

But prechyth duly both 3ere and woke, 
The lawes as I 30W telle. 
The ten comaundementes alle be-dene. 
In oure play 36 xal hem sene, 
To alle tho that there wyl bene, 

If that )e thenke to duelle. 

Secundus vexillaior. 

Off the gentyl Jesse rote. 

The sefnt pagent forsothe xal ben. 

Out of the whiche doth sprynge oure bote. 
As in prophecye we redyn and sen ; f 

Kyngys and prophetes with wordys fful sote,^ 
SchuUe prophesye al of a qwene, 

The whiche xal staunche oure stryff and moote. 



PROLOGUE. I 

And wynnyn us welthe withoutyn wene, S 
In hevyn to abyde. / 

They xal prophecye of a mayde, 

AUe ffendjrs of here xal be afFrayde, 

Here sone xal save us, be not dismayde, 
With hese woundys wyde. 

Teriius vexillator. 

Of the grete bushop Abyacar, 

The tende pagent xal be without lesyng, 
The whiche comaundyth men to be war. 

And brynge here douteres to dew weddyng ; 
Alle that ben xiiij. 3ere and more. 

To maryage he byddyth hem bryng, 
Wherevyr thei be, he chargyth sore. 

That thei not ffayle for no lettyng, 

The lawe byddyth so serteyn than. 
Than Joachym and Anne so mylde, 
Thei brynge forthe Mary that blyssyd chylde. 
But she wold not be defylyde, 

With spot nor wem of man. 

In chast3rtd that blysful mayde 

Avowyd there here lyff to lede. 
Than is the busshop sore dysmayde. 

And wonderyth sore al of this dede ; 
He knelyd to God, as it is sayde. 

And prayth than for help and rede. 
Than seyth an angel, *^ be not afrayde. 

Of this dowte take thou no drede, 

But for the kynrede of Davyd thou sende ; 
Lete hem come with here offryng. 
And in here handy s white 3erdys brynge, 
Loke whose 3erde doth ffloure and sprynge. 

And he xal wedde that mayden hende/' 



COVENTEY MYSTERIES. 

Primus vexiUator. 
In the x.^* pagent, sothe to say, 
A masangere £Forthe is sent; 
Davydis kynrede without delay 

They come £Ful sone with good entent. 
Whan Joseph offeryd his 3erde that day. 

Anon ryth fiforth in present 
The ded styk do floure £Pul gay, 
And than Joseph to wedlok went^ 
Ryth as the angel bad. 
Than he plyth to his wyff, 
In chastyt^ to ledyn here lyff. 
The busshop toke here iij. maydenys ryff, 
Som comforte there she had. 

Secundus veaiUatar. 

In the xj.<*« pagent goth Gabryelle, 

And doth salute oure lady fire, 
Than grett with chylde, as I 30W telle, 

That blyssyd mayde, forsothe is she. 
Tho iij. maydenys that with here dwelle. 

Here gret speche, but noon thei se. 
Than they suppose that sum angelle, 

Goddys masangere that it xuld be. 
And thus 
The Holy Gost in here is lyth. 
And Goddys sone in here is pygth, 
Tlie aungelle doth telle what he xal hyght^ 
And namyth the chylde Jhesus . 

TeriiuM vexiUator. 

In the xij. pagent, as I 30W telle, 
Joseph comyth hom fro fer countr^, 

Oure ladyes wombe with chylde doth swelle, 
And than Joseph ful bevy is he ; 



PROLOGUE. 

He doth forsake here with hert ful felle, 

Out of countrd be gynnyth to fie, 
He nevyr more thenkyth with here to dwelle. 
And than oure lady ryth sore wepyth she. 
An angelle seyd hym ryf, 
** God is with thi wyff sertayn, 
Therfore, Joseph, tume horn agayn." 
Than is Joseph in herte ful fayn. 

And goth ageyn onto his wyff. 

Primus veadUator. 

The xiiij.^ pagent, I sey 30W be*dene, 
Xal be of Joseph and mylde Mary, 

How they were sclawndryd with trey and tene^ 
And to here purgacion thei must hem by. 

Secundus vexiOator. 

In the XV. pagent shewe we xal, 

How Joseph went witboute varyauns^ 

ffor mydwyvys to helpe oure lady at alle. 
Of childe that she bad dely verauns. 

Teriius vexillaior. 

In the xvj. pagent Cryst xal be born, 

Of that joy aungelys xul synge. 
And telle the shepherdys in that morn 

The blysseful byrth of that kyng. 
The shepherdys xal come hym beffom, 

With reverens and with worchepyng, 
ffor he xal savyn that was forlorn. 

And graunt us lyff evyr more lestyng, 
I-wys, 
Thisgleingrythe 
Is mater of myrthe. 
Now Crystys byrthe, 

Bryng us to his blys ! 



8 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Primus vexiUator. 
Tlie XV.** pagent come kynges iij., 

With gold, myrre, and ffrankynsens, 
Kyng Herowdys styward hem dotii jse. 
And bryngy th alle to his presens. . 
The Kynges of Coleyn with hert ful flTre, 
Tolde kyng Herownde here dylygens, 
That thei south in that country 
A kyng of kynges, fifrom fere thens 
A sterre led hem the way. 
The chylde is 30ung and )yth in stalle. 
He xal be kyng of kynges alle^ 
Befifore hym we thynk on kne to ffstlle. 
And worehep hym this day. 

Secundus vexiUator. 

In the xvj. pagent as wroth as wynde 

Is kyng Herownde, the sothe to say, 
And cruel knjrtes and unkende 

To sle male chylderyn he sendyth that day. 
But Cryst Jhesu thei may not ffynde. 

For Joseph hath led tliat childe away 
Unto Egypth, as we have mende. 

As angele to Joseph dyd byd and say 
In hy3ht. 
Tho chylderyn that syt in here moderes lap. 
To sowkyn ful swetly here moderes pap, 
The knythtes do sle hem evyn at a swap. 
This is a rewly syth. 

Tertiu8 vexUlatwr. 

In the xvij. pagent the knythtes, be*dene, 
Shulle brynge dede childeryn befor the kyng ; 

Whan kyng Herownde that syth hath sene, 
£Ful glad he is of here kyllyng. 



PROLOGUE. 

Than kyng Herownde, withowtyn wene. 

Is sett to mete at his lykyng^ 
In his most pride xal come gret tene. 
As 36 xal se at oure pleyng. 

His sorwe xal awake ; 
Whan he is sett at hese most pryde, 
Sodeyn deth xal thrylle his sjrde. 
And kylle his knyttes that with hym byde ; 
The devyl ther soulys xal take. 

Primus veonllator. 

In the xviij. pageot we must purpose, 

To shewe whan Cryst was xij. 3er of age, 
How in the temple he dede appose 

And answerd doctoris ryth wyse and sage. 
The blyssyd babe withowte glose, 

Overcam olde clerkes with suyche langage, 
That thei meveylyd, 36 xal suppose. 

How that he cam to suche knowlage. 
And in this whyle, 
Thre days he was oute 
ffro his modyr, without doute^ 
Wepyng she sowth hym rownde aboute 
Jherusalem many a myle. 

Secundus vexiUaior. 

In the xix. pagent xal seynt Jhon 

Baptyse Cryst, as I 30W say, 
In the watyr of flom Jordone, 

With which devys, as we best may. 
The Holy Gost xal ovyr hym on. 

The ffaderes voys xal be herd that day. 
Out of hevyn that blisful trone, 

The fadyr xal be herd, this is no nay. 
And forth with pleyn. 









10 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

The Holy Cost xal be hys gyde 
Into desert therin to abyde, 
Xl." days a terme ful wyde, 

And xl.'' nyghtes to faste serteyn. 

Teriius vexxUator- 

In the xx.** pagent alle the develys of helle. 

They gadere a parlement, as 36 xal se. 
They have grete doute the trewth to telle, 

Of Cryst Jhesu whath he xulde be. 
They sende Sathan, that fiynde so ffelle, 

Cryst for to tempte in fele degrd : 
We xal 30W shewe, if 3e wyl dwelle. 

How Cryst was temptyd in synnys thre 
Of the deyvl Sathane ; 
And how Cryst answeryd onto alle, 
And made the ffende awey to faUe, 
As we best may this shewe we xalle^ 

Thorwe grace of God and man. 

Primus vexiUator. 

The xxj.'* pagent of a woman xal be. 

The whiche was take in adultrye 
The Pharysewys fifalsed ther 3e xal se, 

Cryst to convycte how they were slye. 
They conseyvyd this sotyltd, 

Yf Cryst this woman dede dampne trewly, 
Ageyn his prechyng than dede he, 

Whiche was of pet^ and of mercy ; 
And yf he dede here save. 
Than were he a3en8 Moyses lawe. 
That byddyth with stonys she xulde be slawe. 
Thus they thowth undyr ther awe 

Cryst Jhesu ffor to have. 



PROLOGUE. 1 1 

Secundus vexillaiar. 

The grettest meracle that evyr Jhesus 

In erthe wrouth beforn his passyon, 
In xxij.*' pegent we purpose us 

To shewe in dede the declaracion. 
That pagent xal be of Lazarus, 

In whos place and haby tacion 
Cryst was logyd, the Gospel seyth thus. 

And ofte tymes toke ther consolacion. 
But3yt 
Lazarus, as I 30W say. 
Was iiij. days ded and beryed in clay, 
ffirom deth to lyve the iiij". day, 

Cryst reysed hym ffrom that pyt. 

Teriita vexillaior. 

In the xxiij.** pagent, Palme Sunday, 

In pley we purpose flfor to shewe, 
How chylderyn of Ebrew with ffloures ful gay. 

The wey that Cryst went thei gun to strewe. 

Primus vexiUator. 

In the xxiiij.** pagent, as that we may, 
Cryst and his apostelys alle on rewe. 
The mawnde of God ther xal they play, 
And sone declare it with wordys ffewe. 
And than 
Judas that fiads traytour, 
flfor XXX.** platys of werdly tresour, 
Xal betray oure Savyour 

To the Jewys certan. 

Secundus vexiUator. 

Sot grevous peyn, this is no les. 
In the XXV." pagent, Cryst xal pray 



12 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

To the fadyr of hevyn that peyn for to ses. 

His shamful deth to put away. 
Judas that traytour, befor gret pres, 

Xal kys his mouthe and hym betray, 
Alle his dyscyples them do dyscres, 

And forsake Cryst, the sothe to say, 
ffor doute thei do hem hede. 
Hese dyscyplys alle everychone 
Do renne awey and leve hym alone, 
They lete hym stondyn amonge his fifon, 
And ronne away £For drede. 

Tertius vexUlaiar. 

Than in the xxvj.'' pagent, 

To Cayphas Cryst xal be brouth, 
Tho Jewys fful redy ther xul be bent, 

Cryst to acuse with worde and thouth. 
Seynt Petyr doth folwe with good intent. 

To se with Cryst what xuld be wrouth ; 
ffor Crystes dyscyple whan he is hent, 

Thryes he doth swere he knew hym nowth,- 
A kok xal crowe and crye ; 
l*han doth Petyr gret sorwe make, 
ffor he his lord thus dede forsake. 
But God to grace hym sone doth take, 
Whan he doth aske mercye. 

Primus vexilUUor. 

In the xxvij. pagent, sere Pylat 

Is sett in sete as hy justyce ; 
Whan he is set in his astat, 

Thre thevys be brout of synful gyse. 
And Cryst that lovyd nevyr stryff nor bat. 

But trewthe and goodnesse on every wyse. 



PROLOGUE. 13 

As for a thef with ryth gret hat, 

Is browth to stondyn at that same syse. 

And than, as I 30W say. 
The wyflF of Pylat goth to rest, 
Coveryd with clothis al of the best, 
Than ffor to slepe she is ful prest, 

Alle this we thenke to play. 

Secundus vemUator. 

In the xxviij. pagent xal Judas, 

That was to Cryst a flFals traytour. 
With wepyng sore evyr crye, alas, 

That evyr he solde oure Savyour. 
He xal be sory ffor his trespas. 

And brynge a3en alle his tresour, 
Alle XXX. pens to sere Cayphas, 

He xal them brynge with gret dolowre, 

ffor the whiche Cryst was bowth. 
ffor gret whanhope, as 36 xal se, 
He hangyth hymself upoi4 a tre^ 
ffor he noth trostjrth in Godys pet^. 

To helle his sowle is browth. 

Tertius vexillator. 

In the xxix. pagent, to Pylatus wyff 

In slepe aperyth the devyl of helle, 
ffor to savyn Crystes lyff. 

The devyl here temptyth, as I 30W telle. 
Sche sendyth to Pylat anon ful ryff. 

And prayth that Cryst he xuld not qwelle ; 
Than Pylat is besy and ryth blyff, 

Cryst for to savyn he 3evyth couucelle, 
ffor he dede nevyr trespas. 
The Jewys do crye fast ffor to kylle. 
The rythful man thei aske to spylle. 



14 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

A thef thei save with herty wylle. 
That callyd is Barrabas. 

Primus vexiUaior. 

In the XXX. pagent thei bete out Crystes bloody 

And nayle hym al imkyd upon a rode tre, 
Betwen ij. thevys, i-wys they were to wood, 

They hyng Cryst Jhesu, gret shame it is to se. 
Vij. wurdys Cryst spekyth hangyng upon the rode, 

The weche 30 xal here alle tho that wyl ther be. 
Than doth he dye £For oure allether good ; 

His modyr doth se that syth, gret momyng makyth she, 
fibr sorwe she gynnyth to swowne. 
Seynt John evyn ther as I 30W plythe. 
Doth chere oure lady with al his mythe, 
And to the temple etnon forth rythe, 

He ledyth here in that stownde. 

Secundas vexUlator. 

We purpose to shewe in oure pleyn place. 

In the xxxj." pagent, thorwe Godys mythe. 
How to Crystes herte a spere gan pace, 

And rent oure lordys bryst in ruly pl3rth. 
ffor Longeus that olde knyth, biynd as he was, 

A ryth sharpe spere to Crystes herte xal pythe. 
The blod of his wounde to his oyn xal tras. 

And thorwe gret meracle ther hath he syth. 
Than in that mom, 
Crystes soule goth downe to belle. 
And ther ovyrcomyth the fend so felle, 
Comfortyth the soulys that therin dwelle. 
And savyth that was fforlorn. 

Teriius vexillator. 

Joseph and Nycodemus to Cryst trew servaunt 
In the xxxij. page[nt] the body thei aske to have. 



PROLOGUB. 15 

Pylat ful redyly the body doth hem graunt, 
Than thei with reverens do put it in grave. 

The Jewys more wyckyd than ony geawunt, 
ffor Crystes ded body kepers do thei crave, 

Pylat sendyth iiij. knytes that be ryth hardaunt, 
To keep the blody body in his dede conclave. 
And 3it be his owyn myth, 

The body that was hevy as led, 

Be the Jewys nevyr so qwed, 

Aryseth from grave that ther lay ded. 

And ffirayth than every knyth. 

Primtu vexiUator. 

In the xxiij. pagent the soule of Cryst Jhesu 

Xal brynge alle his ffrendys ffrom helle to paradyse. 
The soule goth than to the grave, and be ryth gret vertu 

That body that longe ded hath loyn to lyf a3en doth ryse. 
Than doth Cryst Jhesu onto his modyr sew, 

And comfortyth alle here care in temple ther she lyse. 
With suche cher and comforth his modyr he doth indew, 

That joy it is to here ther speche for to devyse. 
And than 
Oure lady of hefne so cler, 
In herte sche hath ryth glad chere. 
Whan here sone thus doth apere. 
Here care awey is tan. 

Secundus vexiUator. 

In the xxxiiij. pagent xal Maryes thre 
Seke Cryst Jhesu in his grave so coolde ; 

An aungel hem tellyth that aresyn is he ; 
And whan that this tale to them is tolde, 

To Crystes dyscyplis with wurdys flFul fre. 
They telle these tydynges with brest ful bolde. 

Than Petyr and John, as 36 xal se, 



16 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Down rennyn in hast over lond and wolde^ 
The trewth of this to have. 

Whan thai ther corny n^ as I 30W say. 

He is gon ffrom undyr clay. 

Than thei wytnesse anoon that day. 
He lyth not in his grave. 

Tertius vexiUator, 

Onto Mary Mawdelyn as we have bent, 

Cryst Jhesu xal than apere. 
In the XXXV." pagent^ 

And she wenyth he be a gardenere. 
Mary, be name verament, 

Whan Cryst here callyth with speche ful clere. 
She fallyth to ground with good entent. 

To kys his fete with gladsom chere. 

But Cryst byddyth here do way. 
He byddyth his feet that sche not kys, 
Tyl he have styed to hefne blys, 
To Crystes dyscyplys Mary i-wys 

Than goth the trewthe to say. 

Primus vexiUator, 

In the XXX vj.** pagent xal Cleophas 

And Sent Luke to a castel go^ 
Of Crystes deth as thei fforth pas 

They make gret mornyng and be ful wo, 
Than Cryst them ovyrtok, as his wyl was. 

And walkyd in felachep fforth with hem too, 
To them he doth expowne bothe more and las 

Alle that prophetes spake ad of hymself also ; 
That nyth in fay. 
Whan thei be set within the castelle, 
In brekyng of bred thei know Cryst welle, 
Than sodeynly, as I 30W telle, 

Cryste is gon his way. 



PROLOGUE. 17 

Seewuhu vesnUatcr. 

In the xxxvij. pagent than purpos we^ 

To Thomas of Ynde Cryst xal apere, 
And Thomas evyn ther, as 36 xal se, 

Xal put his hands in his woundes dere. 

Tertiti8 vexUlator. 

In the xxxviij.** pagent up stye xal he 

Into hefne that is so clere, 
Alle hese apostele there xul be. 
And woundere sore and have gret dwere, 
Of that fferly syth. 
Ther xal come aungelle tweyne. 
And comfforte hem, this is certeyne, 
And tellyn that he xal comyn ageyne, 
Even by his owyn myth. 

Prhma vexiUator. 

Than ffolwyth next sekyrly, 

Of Wyttsunday that solempne ffest, 
Whyche pagent xal be ix. and thretty. 

To the apostelys to apere be Crystes best ; 
In Hierusalem were gaderyd xij. opynly, 

To the Cenacle comyng iFrom West to Est, 
The Holy Cost apperyd flFul vervently, 

With brennyng ffere thyrlyng here brest, 
Procedyng from hevyn trone. 
Alle maner langage hem spak with tung, 
Latyn, Grek, and Ebrew amonge, 
And afiler thei departyd and taryed not long. 
Here deth to take ful sone. 

Secundus vexillaior. 

The xl.** pagent xal be the last, 

And domysday that pagent xal hyth, 



18 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Who se that pagent may be agast 
To grevyn his lord God eyther day or nyth ; 

The erthe xal qwake, bothe breke and brast^ 
Beryelys and gravys xul ope ful tyth, 

Ded men xul rysyn and that therin hast, 
And fiast to here ansuere thei xul hem dyth, 
Beffore Godys fface. 

But prente wyl this in 30ur mende. 

Who so to God hath be unkende, 

ffrenchep ther xal he non iBfynde, 

Ne ther get he no grace. 

Tertius vexiUator. 

Now have we told 30W alle be-dene 

The hool mater that we thynke to pluy ; 
Whan that 3e come, ther xal 3e sene 

This game wel pleyd in good aray. 
Of holy wrytte this game xal b^ie. 

And of no fablys be no way. 
Now God them save from trey and tene, 

ffor us that prayth upon that day, 

And qwyte them wel ther mede. 
A Sunday next, yf that we may. 
At vj. of the belle we gynne oure play, 
In N. towne, wherfore we pray. 

That God now be 30ure spede. Amen. 



I. THE CREATION. 



Dettf; Ego sum alpha et a, prindpium et finis. 

My name is knowyn, Qod and kjrnge. 

My werk for to make now wyl I wende. 
In myself re^yth my reynenge. 

It hath no gynnjmg ne non ende ; 
And alle that evyr xal have bejrnge, 

It is closyd in my mende^ 
Whan it is made at my lykynge, 

I may it save, I may it shende. 
After my plesawns. 
So gret of myth is my poust^ 
Alle thyng xal be wrowth be me, 
I am 00 God in personys thre, 

Knyt in oo substawns. - 

I am the trewe trenyt^, 

Here walkyng in this wone ; 
Thre personys myself I se, 

Lokyn in me God alone. 
I am the ffadyr of powst^. 

My Sone with me gynnyth gon, 
My Gost is grace in magest6, 

Weldyth welthe up in hevyn tron. 

O God thre I calle, 

I a fieuiyr of myth, 

My sone kepyth ryth, 

My gost hath lyth, 

And grace with alle. 

c2 



90 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Myself begynnyng nevyr dyd take. 

And endeles I am thorw myn own myth. 
Now wole I begynne my werke to make,— 

fiyrst I make hevyn with sterrys of lyth 
In myrth and joy evermore to wake. 

In hevyn I bylde angelle fful bryth. 
My servauntes to be, and for my sake. 

With merth and melody worchepe my myth ; 
I belde them in my blysse. 
Aungelle in hevyn evyrmore xal be. 
In lythful clere bryth as ble. 
With myrthe and song to worchip me. 

Of jojrs thei may not mjrs. ^' 

Hie cantent angeli in caslo. ** Tibi omnes angeli^ tibi 
coeli et universes potestates, Tibi cherubyn et seraphyn 
incessabili voce proclamant, — Sanctus ! Sanctus 1 Sane- 
tus ! Dominus Deus Sabaoth.^ 

Lucifer. To whos wurchipe synge je this songe* 

To wurchip God or reverens me ? 
But 3e me wurchipe 36 do me wronge, 

ffor I am the wurthyest that evyr may be. 
Angeli boni. We wurchipe God of myth most stronge, 

Whiche hath fformyd bothe us and the. 
We may nevyr wurchyp hym to longe, 

ffor he is most worthy of magest^ 
On knes to God we fialle. 
Oure lorde God wurchyp we. 
And in no wyse honowre we the, 
A gretter lord may nevyr non be. 

Than he that made us alle. 

Lucifer. A worthyer lorde forsothe am I, 

And worthyer than he evyr wyl I be, 
In evydens that I am more wurthy, 

I wyl go syttyn in Goddes se. 



THE CREATION. SI 

Above sunne and mone and sterres on sky 

I am now set, as 3e may se ; '■^' 
Now wurchyp me ffor most mythty, 
And for ^our lord honowre now me, 
Syttyng in my sete. 
Angek maU. Goddys myth we forsake. 
And for more wurthy we the take, 
The to wurchep honowre we make. 

And fialle down at thi ffete. 

Deu8. Tho Lucyfere ffor thi mekyl pryde, 

I bydde the fialle from hefne to helle ; 
And alle tho that holdyn on thi syde. 

In my blysse nevyr more to dwelle. 
At my comawndement anoon down thou slyde. 

With merthe and joye nevyr more to melle. 
In myschyf and manas evyr xalt thou abyde. 

In byttyr brennyng and fyer so felle, 
In peyn evyr to be pyht. 
Lacyfer. At thy byddyng thi wyl I werke, 
And pas fro joy to peyne smerte, 
Now I am a devyl ful derke, 

That was an aungelle bryht. 

Now to helle the wey I take. 

In endeles peyn ther to be pyht. 
ffor fere of fyre a fart I crake. 

In helle doonjoone myn dene is dyth. / 

Deus. Now hevyn is made ffor aungelle sake, 

The fyrst day and the fyrst nyth ; 
The secunde day watyr I make. 

The walkyn also ful fayr and bryth. 

The iij.** day I parte watyr from erthe, 
Tre and every growyng thjmg, 
Bothe erbe and floure of suete smellyng, 



92 COVBNTRT HTSTEBIES. 

The iij.**' day is made be my werkyng. 

Now make I the day that xal be the fferthe. 

Smme and mone and sterrys also, ^^ 

The forthe day I make in same ; 
The v.** day wenne and fEysche that awymme and go, 

Byrdys and bestes, bothe wylde and tame ; 
The sexte day my werk I do. 

And make the man Adam be namei 
In ertheleche paradys withowtyn wo, 

I graunt the bydyng, lasse thou do blanie : 

fflesche of thi fflesehe, and bon of thi bone, ^ '" ^ 

Adam here iathiwyf and make, 
Both fiysche and foulys that swymmyn and gone. 

To eyeryche of hem a name thou take ; 
Both tre and frute and bestys echone. 

Red and qwyte, bothe blew and blake, 
Thou 3eve hem name be thiself alone, 

Erbys and gresae both beetes and brake ; 
Thi wyff thou 3eye name also. 
Lok that 3e not ses, 
30wre ffru te to encres, 
That ther may be pres 

Me worchipe for to do. \ ^ ^ 

Now come fforthe Adam to paradys, 

Ther xalt thou have alle maner thynge, 
Bothe flesche and ffysche and frute of prys, 

Alle xal be buxum at thi byddyng. 
Here is pepyr, pyan, and swete lyccMrys, 

Take hem alle at thi lykyng, 
Bothe appel and pere and gentyl rys. 

But towche nowth this tre that is of cunnyng, 

4 

Alle thynge saff this ffor the is wrought ; "" 



THE CREATION. 93 

Here is alle thinge that the xulde plese^ 
Alle redy made onto thin ese^ 
Ete not this frute ne me dysplese, 

ffor than thou deyst^ thou skapyst nowth. 



Now haye I made alle thynge of nowth, ^ '^ ^ 

Hevyn and erthe, fouUe and best : — 
To alle thynge that myn hand hath wrowth, 

I graunt myn blyssyng that evyr xal lest; 
My wey to hefne is redy sowth, 

Of werkyng I wole the vij.** day rest. 
And alle my creatures that be abowth. 

My blyssyng 30 have both est and west. 

Of werkyng the vij.^ day 30 sees ; 
And alle tho that sees of laboryng here, 
TTie vij"*. day withowtyn dwere. 
And wurchyp me in good manere, 

Thei xal in hefne have endles pes. 



■/// 



Adam go forthe and be prynce in place, i *^ ' 

ffor to he&e I sped my way ; 
Thi wyttys wel loke thou chase^ 

And gostly goveme the, as I say. 



n. THE FALL OF MAN. 



Adam. Holy ffadyr blyssyd thou be, 

ffor I may walke in welthe anow, 
I ffynde datys gret plenty, 

And many ffele frutes ful every bow ; 
AUe this wele is 3evyn to me, 

And to my wjrf that on me lowh, 
I have no nede to towche 3on tre, 

A>en8 my lordys wyl to werke now ; 
I am a good gardenere ; 
Every frute of ryche name, 
I may gaderyn with gle and game. 
To breke that bond I were to blame 

That my lord bad me kepyn here. 

Eva. We may bothe be blythe and glad, 

Oure lordys comaundement to fulfylle, 
With ffele frutys be we ffayr ffad, 

Womidyr dowcet and nevyr on ille. 
Every tre with frute is sprad, 

Of them to take as plesyth us tylle, 
Oure wytte were rakyl and ovyr don bad, 

To fforfete ageyns oure lordys wylle 
In ony wyse. 
In this gardejrn I wyl go se, 
AUe the ffloures of fayr bewt^. 
And tastyn the frutes of gret plenty. 
That be in paradyse. 



THE FALL OF MAN. 25 

Serpens, Heyl ffayr wyff and comely dame ! 

This ffrute to ete I tlie cownselle. 
Take this appyl and ete this ssame. 

This ffrute is best as I the telle. 
Eva. That appyl to ete I were to blame^ . 

ffrom joy oure lorde wolde us expelle^ 
We xuld dye and be put out with schame, 

In joye of paradyse nevyr more to du^e.\ 
God hymself thus sayde. 
What day of that frute we ete, 
With these wurdys God dyd us threte. 
That we xuld dye our lyff to lete, 

Therffore I am affrayde. 

Serpens. Of this appyl yf je wyl byte, 

Evyn as God is, so xal 30 be, 
Wjrs of connyng as I 30W plyte, 

Lyke onto God in al degrd. 
Sunne and mone and sterrys bryth, 

ffysche and foule, bothe sond and se. 
At 30ur byddyng bothe day and nyth, 

Alle tbynge xal be in 3owre powst^ ^ 
3e xal be Goddys pere. 
Take this appyl in thin bond, 
And to byte therof thou ffond, 
Take another to thin husbond, 

Thereof have thou no dwere. 

Eva. So wys as God is in his gret mayn, 
And ffelaw in kunnyng ffayn wold I be. 

Serpens. Ete this appyl, and in certeyn 
That I am trewe, sone xalt thou se. 

Eva. To myn husbond with herte fful fayne. 
This appyl I here, as thou byddyst me. 



916 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

This frute to ete I xal asayn. 
So wys as God is yf we may be. 

And Goddys pere of myth. 
To myn husbond I walke my way. 
And of this appyl I xal asay, 
To make hym to ete, yf that I may. 

And of this ffirewte to byth. 

Hie Eva reveniet Adke viro suo et dicet ei. 

My semely spowse and good husbond, 

Ljrstenyth to me, sere, I 30W pray. 
Take this fiayr appyl alle in 30ur bond, 

Therof a mursel byte and asay. 
To ete this appyl, loke that ^e fonde, 

Goddys ffelaw to be alway, 
Alle his wysdam to undyrstonde. 

And Goddys pere to be Sor ay, 

Alle thyng for to make, — 
Bothe ffjTSche and foule, se and sond, 
Byrd and best, watyr and lond ; 
This appyl thou take out of mjrn bond, 
A bete therof thou take. 

Adam. I dare not towche thin hand ffor dred 

Of oure lord God omnypotent. 
If I xuld werke after thi reed. 

Of God oure makere I xuld be shent. 
If that we do this synful dede. 

We xal be ded by Goddys jugement. 
Out of thin hand with hasty spede. 

Cast out that appyl anon present, 
ffor fer of Goddys threte. 
Eva. Of tliis appyl yf thou wylt byte. 



THE FALL OF MAN. S7 

Goddjrs pere thou xalt be pyht, 
So wys of kunnyng, I the plyht, 

This frute yf thou wylt ete. 

Adam. If we it ete oureself we kylle. 

As God us told we xuld be ded ; 
To ete that frute and my lyf to spylle, 

I dar not do aftyr thi reed. 
Eva. A ffayr aungelle thus seyd me tylle, 

** To ete that appyl take nevyr no dred. 
So kunnyng as God in hevyn hille, 

Thou xalt sone be withinne a sted^ 

Therfore this frute thou ete.^ 
Adam, Off Goddys wysdam for to lere^ 
And in kunnyng to be his pere. 
Of thyn hand I take it here. 

And xal sone tast this mete. 

Adam dicet sic. 
Alas ! alas ! fibr this fals dede, 

My flesly frend my fo I fynde, 
Schameful synne doth us unhede, 

I se us nakyd before and beliynde. 
Oure lordes wurd wold we not drede, 

Therfore we be now caytyvys unkynde, 
Oure pore prevyt^s ffor to hede, 

Summe flygge-levys fayn wolde I fynde, 
ffor to hyde oure schame. 
Womman, ley this leff on thi pryvyte. 
And with this leff I xal hyde me, 
Gret schame it is us nakyd to se, 

Oure lord God thus to grame. 

Eva. Alas ! that evyr that speche was spokyn. 
That the fals aungel seyd onto me, 



28 GOVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Alas ! oure makers byddyng is brokyn, 
ffor I have towchyd his owyn dere tre. 

Oure flSescly eyn byn al unlokyn, 
Nakyd for synne ouresylf we se, 

That sory appyl that we han sokyn, 

To dethe hathe brouth my spouse and me, 
Ryth g^evous is oure synne. 

Of mekyl shame now do we knowe, 

Alas ! that evyr this appyl was growe, 

To dredful deth now be we throwe, 

In peyne us evyr to pynne. 

Deus. Adam, that with mjrn handjrs I made, 
Where art thou now ? what hast thou wrought ? 

Adam. A I lord, for synne oure floures do ffade, 
I here thi voys, but I se the nought. 

Deus. Adam, why hast thou synnyd so sone, 

Thus hastyly to breke my bone, 

And I made the mayster, undyr mone, 
Trewly of every tre. 

tre I kept for my owe, 
Lyff and deth therin I knowe, 

Thi synne fro lyf now the hath throwe, 

ffrom deth thou mayst not fle. 

Adam, Lord I have wrought a3ens thi wylle, 

1 sparyd nat mysylf to spylle. 

The woman that thou toke me tylle, 

Sche brougth me therta 
It was here counselle and here reed, 
Sche bad me do the same deed, 
I walke as werme withowtyn wede, 

A wey is schrowde and sho. 

Deu8. Womman that arte this mannys wyffe. 
Why hast thou steryd 3 our bothers stryffe ? 



THE FALL OF MAN. 29 

Now 36 be ffrom 30ur ffayr lyffe. 

And are demyd for to deye. 

Unwys womman, sey me why. 

That thou hast don this fowle foly, 

And I made the a gret lady, 

In paradys for to pleye? 

Eva. Lord ! whan thou wentyst from this place, 
A werm with an aungelys face. 
He hyth us to be ful of grace. 

The frute yf that we ete. 
I dyd his byddyng, alas ! alas ! 
Now we be bowndyn in dethis las, 
I suppose it was Sathanas, 

To peyne he gan us pete. 

Deui, Thou werm with thi wylys wyk^ 
Thi fals fablis thei be ful thyk, / 

Why hast thou put dethis pryk 

In Adam and his wyff ? 
Thow thei bothyn my byddyng have brokyn. 
Out of whoo 3et art not wrokyn. 
In helle logge thou xalt be loky[n]^ 

And nevyr mo lacche lyff. 

Diabolus. I xal the sey whereffore and why ^ 
I ded hem alle this velony, 
ffor I am ful of gret envy, 

Of wrethe and wyckyd hate. 
That man xulde leve above the sky, 
Where as sumtyme dwellyd I, 
And now I am cast to helle sty, ^ 

Streyte out at hevyn gate. 

Deus* Adam ! ffor tliou that appyl boot, 
A3ens my byddyng, welle I woot. 



80 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Go teyl thi mete with swynk. and swoot. 

Into thi lyvys ende. 
Goo nakyd, ungry, and bare ffoot, 
Ete bothe erbys^ gres, and root. 
Thy bale hath non other boot, 

As wrecche in werlde thou wende. 

Womman thou sowtyst this synnyng. 
And bad hym breke myn byddyng, 
fTherfore thou xalt ben undyrlyng, 

-s. To mannys byddyng bend. 

What he byddyth the, do thou that thynge. 
And here thi chyldere with gret gronynge, 
In daungere and in deth dredynge, 
Into thi lyvys ende. 

Thou wyokyd wcnrm fitil of pryde, 
ffowle envye syt be thi syde, 
Upon thi gutt tfaou xalt glyde, 

As wenn wyckyd in kende. 
Tyl a niayd<m in medyl-erth be borne. 
Thou ffende I warn the beforn, 
Thorwe here thi bed xal be to-torn, 

On wombe awey thou wende. 

Diabolui. At thi byddyng ffowle I falle, 
,^ I krepe hem to my stynkyng stalle, 
Helle pyt and hevyn halle, 

Xul do thi byddyng bone. 
I ffiedle downe here a ffowle freke, 
ffor this ffalle I gynne to qweke. 
With a ffart my breche I breke. 

My sorwe comyth ful sone. 

Deus. ffor 30ur synne that 3e have do. 
Out of this bljrsse sone xal ye go, 



THE FALL OF MAN. SI 

In erthely labour to levyn in wo. 

And Borwe the xal atast. 
ffor your syime and mysdoyng. 
An angelle with a swerd brennyng. 
Out of this joye he xal 30W dyng, 

30ur welthe awey is past 

Hie reeeiUi DeuSy et angeha serapkicus cum gladio 
fflammea verberai Adam et Bvam extra ParadUum. 

Serngphim. }e wrecchis unkend and ryht unwyse, 

Out of this joye hy3 30W in hast, 
With fflammyng swerd ffinom paradyse 

To peyn I bete 30W, of care to tast. 
3 our myrthe is tumyd to carfuUe syse, 

3 our weltiie with synne awey is wast, 
ffor 3 our ffalse dede of synful gyse. 

This blysse I spere ffrom 30W ryth &st 
Here in come 36 no more ; 
Tyl a chyide of a mayd be bom. 
And upon the rode rent and torn, > 

To saye alle that 3e have forlorn, 

30ur welthe fibr to restore. 

Eva. Alas ! alas 1 and wele away, 

That evyr towchyd I the tre ; 
I wende as wreoche in welsom way. 

In blake busshys my boure xal be. 
In paradys is {dent^ of pleye, 

ffayr frutys ryth gret plenty. 
The 3atys be schet with Godys keye, 

My husbond is lost because of me. 

Leve spowse now thou fonde. 
Now stomble we on stalk and ston, A 

My wyt awey is fro me gon, 



82 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Wrythe on to my necke bon. 

With hardnesse of thin honde. 

Adam. Wyff, thi wytt is not wurthe a rosche, 

Leve woman, turne thi thought, 
I wyl not sle fflescly of my fflesche, 

fibr of my flesche thi fflesche was wrought. 
Oure hap was hard, oure wytt was nesche. 

To paradys whan we were brought, 
My wepyng xal be longe ffresche, 

Schort lykyng xal be longe bought 

No more telle thou that tale, 
flfor yf I xulde sle my wyff, 
I sclow myself withowtyn knyff; 
In helle logge to lede my lyff. 

With woo in wepyng dale. 

But lete us walke forthe into the londe. 

With ryth gret labour oure fode to fynde. 
With delvyng and dyggyng with myn bond, 

Oure blysse to bale and care to-pynde. 
And, wy£f, to spynne now must thou ffonde, 

Oure nakyd bodyes in clothe to wynde, 
Tylle sum comforthe of Godys sonde. 

With grace releve oure careful mynde. 
Now come go we hens, wy£f. 
Eva. Alas ! that ever we wrought this synne, 
Oure bodely sustenauns for to wynne, 
3e miist delve and I xal spynne, 

In care to ledyn oure lyff. 



III. CAIN AND ABEL. 



AbeeU. I wolde ffayn knowe how I xuld do^ 

To serve my lord God to his plesyng ; 
Therfore, Caym, brother, lete us now go 

Unto oure ffadyr withowte lettyng, 
Suenge hym in vertu and in norture 

To com to the hy3er joy celestyalle, 
Remembryng to be clene and pure. 

For in mysrewle we myth lythly fSsdle 
A3enB hevyn kynge. 
Lete us now don oure dyligens. 
To come to oure faderes presens, 
Good brother, passe we hens, 

To knowe flFor oure levynge. 

Caym. As to my fadyr, lete us now tee 
To knowe what xal be his talkyng ; 
And that I holde it but vanyt^, 
To go to hym fibr any spekyng. 
To lere of his lawe. 
ffor if I have good anow plenty, 
I kan be mery, so mot y the, 
Thow my fadyr I nevyr se, 

I 3yf not therof an hawe. 

Abel. Ryth sovereyn fadyr, semely sad and sure, 

Ever we thank 30W in hert, body, and thowth, 

D 



34 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

And alwey shulle whylle oure lyf may indure. 
As inwardly in hert it kan be sought, 

Bothe my brother and I. 
ffadyr, I ffalle onto 30ur kne. 
To knowe how we xul rewlyd be, 
ffor Godys that fiallyth bothe hym and me, 

I wolde ffayn wete trewly. 

Adam. Sonys, ^e am to spekyn Dataraly* 

The ffyrst £Frute of kendely engendrure^ 
Beffom whom, saff 30ur modjrr and I, 

Were nevjrr non of mannys nature. 
And 3it were we al of another portature. 

As 30 have me oftyn herd seyd sothly ; 
Wherfore, sonys, yf 3e wyl ly£f sad and sure, 

ffyrst I 30W counseylle most syngulerly, 
God ffor to love and drede. 
And suche good as God bath 30W sent, 
The fyrst frute offyr to hym in sacryfice brent, 
Hym evyr besechyng with meke entent, 

In alle 30ur werkys to save and spede. 

Abeelle. Gramercy, fladyr, ffor 50ur good doctrine, 

ffor as 3e us techyn so xal we do. 
And as ffor me thoro Goddys grace dyv3me, 

I wyl fforthwith applye me therto. 
Cayme. And thow me be lothe I wyl now also 

Onto 30ur counselle, ffadyr, me inclyne; 
And 3itt I say now to 30W bothe too, 

I had levyr gon hom welle fibr to dyne. 
Adam. Now, God, graunt good sacryfice to 30W bothe too. 

He vowchesaff to aoceptyn 30W and alle myne. 
And 3eve 30W now grace to plesyn hym soo. 

That 50 may come to that bly see that hymselfis inne. 
With gostly grace. 



ClIN AND ABBL. S5 

That alle 30ttr here levyng 
May be to his plesyng. 
And at jour hens partyng. 

To come to good place. 

AbeUediceL 
AhDyhtty Grod, and Grod ful of myth. 

Be whom alle thing is made of nowth, 
To the myn hert is redy dyht, 

For upon the is alle my thought. 

soFereyn lord ! reygnyng in etemyttf. 
With alle the mekenesse that I kan or may, 

This lombe xal I offire it up to the, — 
Accept it, blyssjrd Lord ! I the pray. 

My 3yft is but sympyl, this is no nay. 
But my wyl is good and evyr xal be. 

The to servyn and worchepyn bothe nyht and day. 
And therto thi grace, Lord^ grawnt thou me, 
Throwhe tlii gret mercy, 

Whiche in a lombys lyknes 

Thou xalt for mannys wyckydnes 

Qnys ben offeryd in peynfulnes 
And deynful dolfoly. 

ffor trewly, Liord, thow art most worthy 

The best to have in eche degr^, 
Bothe beste and werst ful certeynly, 

Alle is had thorowe grace of the. 
The best schep fulle hertyly, 

Amonges my flok that I kan se, 

1 tythe it to God of gret mercy, 

And bettyr wolde, if bettyr myht be,-— 

Eyyn here is myn ofiryng. 

I tythe to the with ryht good wylle. 

Of the best thou sentyst me tylle. 

d2 



96 CaVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Now, grftcyous God on hevyn hille, 
Accept now my tytliyng. 

Caym. Amonges alle ffblys that gon on grownd, 

I holde that thou be on of the most, 
To tythe the best that is most sownd. 

And kepe the werst that is nere lost. 
But I more wysly xal werke this stownde, 

To tythe the werst, and make no host. 
Off alle my cornys that may be fownde. 

In alle my ffeldys bothe croflte and cost, 
I xal lokyn on every syde. 
Here I tythe this unthende sheff, 
Lete God take it or ellys lef, 
Thow it be to me gret repreff, 

I 3eve no iTors this tyde. 

AbeUe. Now Caym, brother, thou dost ful ille, 

ffor God the sent bothe best and werst, 
Therfore thou shewe to hym good wylle. 

And tythe to God evyr of the best. 
Caym. In feyth, thou shewyst now a febylle skylle. 

It wolde me hyndyr and do me greff". 
What were Grod the better, thou sey me tylle. 

To 3evyn hym awey my best sheff, 

And kepe myself the wers? 
He wylle neyther ete nor drynke, 
ffor he doth neyther swete nor swynke : 
Thou shewyst a ffebyl reson, me thynke. 

What thou fonnyst as a best I gesse. 

Abelle. 5it me thynkyth my wyt is good, . 

To God evermore sum love to shewe. 
Off whom we have oure dayly food. 

And ellys we had but lytyl drewe. 



CAIN AND ABEL. 37 

Caym. yitt me thynkeht thi wytt is wood, 

ffor of thi lore I ffynde but fFewe ; 
I wylle never the more chawnge my mood, 
flTor no wordys that thou dost shewe ; 
I sey I wylle tythe the werst. 
Abelle. Now God, that syt in hefne above, 
On whom is sett alle myn hool love, 
This wycLyd wylle iVora the he showe. 
As it plesyth hym best ! 

Hie ardent decimum Abel et Caym ; quo facto ^ dicent, 

Caym. Herke, Abel, brother, what aray is this. 

Thy tytbyng brennyth as ffyre fful bryght. 
It is to me gret wondyr i-wys, 

I trow this is now a straunge syght. 
Abelle. Goddys wylle ffbrsothe it is. 

That my tythyng with fyre is lyth, 
ffor of the best were my tythis. 

And of the werst thou dedyst hym dyght, 
Bad thyng thou hym bede. 
Of the best was my tythyng, 
And of the werst was thin offryng, 
Therfbr God Almyghty, hevyn kyng, 

Alowyht ryht nowth thi dede. 

Caym. What ? thou stynkyng losel, and is it so ? 

Doth God the love and hatyht me ? 
Thou xalt be ded, I xal the slo, 

Thi Lord thi God thou xalt nevyr se ! 
Tythyng more xalt thou nevyr do. 

With this chavyl bon I xal sle the, 
Thi deth is dyht, thi days be go, 

Out of myn handys xalt thou not fle, 

With this strok I the kylle.— 
Now this boy is slayn and dede, 



38 COYENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Of hym I xal nevyr more ban drede ; 
He xal hereafter nevyr ete brede. 

With this gresse I xal hym hylle. 

Deui. Caym, come fforthe and answere me, 

Asoyle my qwestyon anon ryght. 
Thy brother Abel, wher is now he ? 

Ha don, and answere me as tyght. 
Caym. My brothers kepere ho made me ? 

Syn whan was I his kepyng knyght? 
I kan not telle wher that he be. 

To kepe hym was I nevyr dyght, 
I knowe not wher he is. 
Deu$. Acursyd Caym, thou art untrewe. 
And for tbi dede thou xalt sore rewe ; 
Thi brothers blood that thou slewe, 

Askyht vengeauns of thi mys. 

Thn salt be cursyd on the grounde, 

Unprophitable where so thou wende, \ 

Bothe veyn and nowthty and nothyng sounde. 

With what thing thou medele thou xalt it shende. 
Caym. Alas i in wboo now am I wounde, 

Acursyd of God, as man unkende ; 
Of any man yf I be founde, 

He xal me slo, I have no ffrende, 
Alas and weleaway ! 
Deus. Of what man that thou be sclayne. 
He xal have vij. folde more payn, 
Hym were bettyr never to be sayn 
On lyve be nyth ne day. 

Caym. Alas ! alas ! whedyr may I go ? 
I dare nevyr se man in the vesage, 



CAIN AND ABEL. S9 

lam woondyD as a wrecche in wo, 

And cursyd of God ffor my ffal&ge. 
Unprofytabyl and vayn also, 

In felde and towne, in strete and stage, 
I may nevyr make merthis mo, 

I wot nevyr whedyr to take passage ; 
I dare not here abyde. 
Now wyl I go wende my way, 
With sore syeng and welaway, 
To loke where that I best may 

ffrom mannys ssyht me byde. 



IV. NOAH'S FLOOD. 



Introitus Nae. 
Noe. God of bis goodnesse and of grace grounde, 
By whoys gloryous power alle thjrng is wrought^ 
In whom alle vertu plentevously is ffounde, 

W^thowtyn whos wyl may be rytb nought ; 
Thy servamites save. Lord, fro sjmful sownde, 

In wyl, in werk, in dede, and in thoubt ; 
Oure weltb in woo lete nevyr be fownde. 

Us help. Lord, from synne that we be in brought. 
Lord Grod fful of myght ! 
Noe, seres, my name is knowe, 
My wyff and my chyldere here on rowe. 
To God we pray with hert ful lowe. 

To plese hym in his syght. 

In me Noe, the secunde age 

Indede begynnyth, as I 30W say ; 
AflFtyr Adam, withoutyn langage, 

The secunde fadyr am I in fay. 
But men of levyng be so owtrage, 

Bothe be nyght and eke be day. 
That lesse than synne the soner swage, 

Grod wyl be vengyd on us sum way, 
Indede. 
Ther may no man go ther owte, 
But synne' regny th in every rowte. 
In every place rownde abowte 

Cursydnes doth sprynge and sprede. 



NOAH'S FLOOD. 41 

Uxor Noe, AUemyghty God, of his gret grace, 

Enspyre men with hertely wylle. 
For to sese of here trespace, 

ffor synfulle levyng oure sowle xal spylle. 
Synne offendyth God in his face. 

And agrevyth oure Liorde ffuUe ylle, 
It causyth to man ryght grett manace. 

And scrapy th hym out of Ijrvys bylle. 
That blyssyd book. 
What man in synne doth alle wey scleppe. 
He xal gon to belle ful deppe. 
Than xal he nevyr after creppe 

Out of the brennyng brook. 

I am 30ur wyff, 30ur cliilderyn these be. 

Onto us tweyn it doth longe. 
Hem to teche in aUe degr^ 

Synne to forsakyn and wbrkys wronge. 
Therfore, sere, for love of me, 

Enforme hem wele evyr amonge, 
Synne to forsake and vanyt^ 

And vertu to fiblwe that thai ffonge, 
Oure Lford God to plese. 
Noe. I warne 30W, childeryn, on and alle, 
Drede oure lord God in hevy[n] halle, 
And in no forfete that we ne ffalle, 

Oure Lord for to dysplese. 

Shem, A I dere fiFadyr, God forbede 

That we xulde do in ouy wyse 
Ony werke of synful dede, 

Oure lord God that xulde agryse. 
My name is Shem, 3our son of prise, 

I xal werke aftere 30ur rede. 



4£ COVENTRT IfYSTERIES. 

And also^ wyff, the weylle awyse, 
Wykkyd werkjs that thou none brede^ 

Never in no degre. 
Uxor Seem, fforsothe, sere, be Groddys grace, 
I xal me kepe iVom alle trespace. 
That xulde offende Groddys fiace, 

Be help of the Trynyt^. 

Cham. I am Cham, 30ur secunde sone, 

And pmpose me be Goddys myght, 
Nevyr suche a dede for to don, 

That xuld agreve Grod in syght. 
Uxor Cham. I pray to Grod me grawnt this bone. 

That he me kepe in suche a plyght, 
Momynge, hevenynge, mydday, and none, 

I to affendyn hjrm day nor nyght. 
Lord God, I the pray, 
Bothe wakynge and eke in slepe, 
Gracyous Grod, thou me keppe, 
lliat I nevyr in daunger crepe. 

On dredffulle domys-day. 

Japhet, Jai^t, thi iij.^ sone, is my name ; 

I pray to Grod, wher so we be. 
That he us borwe fro synfulle shame. 

And in vertuous levynge evynnore kepe me. 
Uxor Japhet. I am 50ur wyff, and pray the same. 

That God us save on sonde and se, 
With no grevauns that we hym grame. 

He grawnt us grace synne to fle,-* 

Lord God, now here oure bone. 
Noe. Gracyous Grod, that best may, 
With herty wyl to the we pray, 
Thou save us sekyr bothe nyght and day, 
Synne that we noon done. 



NOAH'S FLOOD. 4S 

Deia, Ow, what menyht this myslevjrng man, 

Whiche myn hand made and byldyd in blysse ? 
Synne so sore grevyht me 3a in certayn, 

I wol be vengyd of this grett mysse. 
Myn aungel dere, thou xalt gan 

To Noe that my servaunt is, 
A shypp to make on bond to tan 

Thou byd hym swythe ffor hym and his, 
ffrom drjrnchjmg hem to save, 
ffor, as I am God off myght, 
I xal dystroye this werd downe ryght, 
Here synne so sore grevyht me in syght, 
Thei xal no mercy have. 

ffecisse hominem nunc poenitet me ! 

That I made man sore doth me rewe, 
Myn handwerk to sle sore grevyth me. 

But that here synne here deth doth brewe. 
Go sey to Noe, as I bydde the, 

Hymself, his wyf, his childeryn trewe, 
Tho viij. sowlys in shyp to be, 

Thei xul not drede the flodys fflowe. 

The fflod xal harme them nowht. 
Of alle ffowlys and bestys thei take a peyre. 
In shypp to save, bothe ffoule and ffetyere, 
ffrom alle dowtys and gret dyspeyre. 

This vengeauns or it be wrought. 

Angelus ad Noe. Noe ! Noe ! a shypp loke thou make. 
And many a chaumbyr thou xalt have therinne ; 

Of every kyndys best a cowpyl thou take, 
Within the shypp here ly vys to wynne. 

ffor God is sore grevyd with man for his synne. 
That alle this wyde werd xal be dreynt with flood, 



44 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

SafF thou and thi wyff xal be kept from this gynne. 
And also thi chylderyn with here vertuys good. 

Noe. How xuld I have wytt a shypp for to make, 

I am of ryght grett age, v. c. 3ere olde. 
It is not for me this werk to undyrtake, 

ffbr ffeythnnesse of age my leggys gyn ffolde. 
Angelu8. This dede ffor to do be bothe blythe and bolde, 

Grod xal enforme the and rewle the ful ryght, 
Of herd and of beste take, as I the tolde, 

A peyr into the shypp, and Crod xal the qwyght. 

Noe. I am ful redy as Grod doth me bydde, 

A shypp for to make be myght of his grace, 
Alas ! that ffor synne it xal so be betydde, 

That vengeauns of flood xal werke this manase. 
God is sore grevyd with oure grett tresspas. 

That with wylde watyr the werd xal be dreynt ; 
A shyppe for to make now lete us hens pas. 

That God a3en8 us of synne have no eompleynt. 

Hie transit Noe cum/amilia stta pro navi, quo exeunte, 
locum interludu subintret statim Lameth eonduetus ab 
adolescentey et dieens, 

Lameth. Gret mornyng I make, and gret cause I have ; 

Alas ! now I se not, for age I am blynde, 
Blyndenes doth make me of wytt for to rave, 

Whantynge of eye-syght in peyn doth me bynde. 
Whyl I had syht, ther myht nevyr man fynde 

My pere of archerye in alle this werd aboute; 
ffor 3itt schet I nevyr at hert, are, nere hynde. 

But y f that he deyd, of this no man have doute. 

Lameth " the good archere,^' my nanio was ovyr alle^ 
ffor the best archere myn name dede ever sprede ; 



NOAH'S FLOOD. 45 

Record of my boy, here wytnes this he xal, 

What merk that were set me to deth it xuld blede« 

Adolescens. It is trewe, mayster, that 3e seyn, indede ; 
ffor that tyme 36 had 30ure bowe bent in honde. 

If that 3 our prycke had be half a myle in brede, 
3e wolde the pryk han hitte, if 36 ny had stonde. 

Lameih, I xuld nevyr affayled what marke that ever were sett, 

Whyl that I myght loke and had my clere syght ; 
And 3itt, as me thynkyht, no man xuld shete bett 

Than I xuld do now, if myn hand were sett aryght* 
Aspye some marke, boy, my bowe xal I bende wyght. 

And sett myn hand evyn to shete at some best ; 
And I dare ley a wagour his deth for to dyght. 

The marke xal I hitt, my ly ff do I best. 

Adolescens. Undyr 3on grett bushe, mayster, a best do I se. 

Take me thin hand swythe and holde it ful stylle. 
Now is thin hand evyn as evyr it may be, 

Drawe up thin takylle 3on best for to kylle. 
Lameih. My bowe xal I drawe ryght with herty wylle. 

This brod arwe I shete that best ffor to saylle ; 
Now have at that busche 3on best for to spylle, 

A sharppe schote I shote, therof I xall not faylle. 

Cayn, Out, out, and alas ! myn hert is on sondyr. 

With a brod arwe I am ded and sclayn ! 
I dye here on grounde, myn hert is alle to tundyr. 

With this brod arwe it is clovyn on twayn ! 
Lameth. Herke, boy, cum telle me the trewthe in certeyn. 

What man is he that this cry doth thus make ? 
Adolescens. Caym thou hast kyllyd, I telle the ful pleyn. 

With thi sharp shetyng his dethe hath he take. 

Lameth. Have I slayn Cayme ? Alas I what have I done ? 
Thou stynkynge lurdeyn, what hast thou wrought ? 



46 



COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 



Thou art the why I scte hym so sone, 

Therfore xal I kylle the here, thou skapyst nowght. 

Hie Lameth cum arcu sua verberat adoUscentem ad 
mortem, dicente adolescente, 
Adoiescens. Out, out, I deye here .' my deth is now sought ! 

This theffe with his bowe hath broke my brayn ! 
Ther may non heipe be, my dethe is me brought, 

Ded here I synke down as man that is sclayn ! 

Lameth. Alas! what xal I do? wrecche,wykkyd on woolde, 

God wyl be vengyd ful sadly on me ; 
ffor deth of Caym I xal have vij. folde 

More peyn than he had that Ahelle dede sle. 
These to mennys deth fulle sore bought xal be. 

Upon alle my blood God wylle venge this dede, 
Wherefore sore wepyng hens wyl I fle, 

And loke where I may best my hede sone heyde. 

Hie recedat Lameth et statim intrat A'oe cum navi 
cantanlei, 
Noe, With doolful hert syenge sad and sore, 

Grett mornyng I make flbr this dredful flood I 
Of man and of best is dreynte many a skore, 

Alle this werd to spylle these flodys be ful wood. 
And alle is for synne of roannys wylde mood, 

That God hath ordeyned this dredfuUe vengeaunce; 
In this flood spylt is many a monnys blood, 

ffor synfulte levynge of man we have gret grevauns. 



Alle Uiis hundryd jere ryght here have I wrought, 
This schypp for to make, as God dede byd me } 

Of alle maner bestes a copylle is in brought. 
Within my shypp horde on ly ve for to be. 

Ryght longo God hath soferyd amendyng to se ; 
Alle this hundryd sere God hath shewyd grace. 



NOAH'S FLOOD. 47 

Alas ! fro gret syn man wyl not fle, 

God doth this vengeauns for oure gret trespase. 

Uxor Noe, Alas ! for gret ruthe of this gret vengeaunce^ 

Gret doyl it is to se this watyr so wyde ! 
But 3it thankyd be God of this ordenaunee, 

That we be now savyd on lyve to abyde. 
Seem, ffbr grett synne of lechory alle this doth betyde, 

Alas ! that evyr suche synne xulde be wrought ! 
This fflood is so gret on every a syde. 

That alle this wyde werd to care is now brought. 

Uxor Seem. Becawse of chylderyn of God that weryn good, 

Dede forfete ryght sore what tyme that thei were, 
Synfully compellyd to Caymys blood, 

Therfore be we now cast in ryght grett care. 
Cham, ffor synfiil levynge this werde doth for-fare ; 

So grevous vengeauns myght nevyr man se ; 
Ovyr alle this werd wyde ther is no plot bare, 

With watyr and with flood Grod vengyd wylle be. 

Uxor Cham. Rustynes of synne is cawse of these wawys, 

Alas ! in this fflood this werd xal be lorn ; 
ffor offens to God brekyng his lawys, 

On rokkys ryght sharp is many a man torn. 
Japhet. So grevous fflodys were nevyr 3ett befome, 

Alas ! that lechory this vengeauns doth gynne ! 
It were welle bettyr ever to be unborn, 

Than ffor to forfetyn evyr more in that synne. 

Uxor Japhei. Oure lord God I thanke of his gret grace, 
That he doth us save from this dredful payn ! 

Hym for to wurchipe in every stede and place. 

We beth gretly bownde with myght and with mayn. 

Noe. XL** days and nyghtes hath lasted this rayn, 
And xL** days this grett flood begynnyth to slake ; 



48 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

This crowe xal I sende out to seke sum playn. 
Good tydynges to brynge, this massage I make. 

Hie emiitat corvum, etparum expectans iterum dicatj 

This crowe on sum careyn is falle for to ete, 

Therfore a newe masangere I wyllefforthe now sende ; 

ffly fforth, thou fayr dove^ ovyr these waterys wete, 

And aspye a£n;ere sum dry lond, oure momyng to amend. 

IRc evolet columba; qua redeunte cum ramo viride 

Joye now may we make of myrth that that were frende, 
A grett oly ve bushe this dowe doth us brynge ; 

ffor joye of this tokyn ryght hertyly we tende 
Our lord Grod to worchep, a songe let us synge. 

Hie decantent hos versus. 

Mare vidit et fugit, 
Jordanis conversus est retrorsum. 
Non nobis, Domine, non nobis, 
Sed nomini tuo da gloriam. 

Et sic recedant cum navi. 



V. ABRAHAM'S SACRIFICE. 



Introitus Abrahe^ etc. 
Most myghty makere of sunne and of mone, 

Kyng of kyngesi and Lord over alle, 
AUemyghty God in hevyn trone, 

I the honowre and evyr more xal ! 
My Lord, ray God ! to the I kalle. 

With herty wylle. Lord, I the pray. 
In synfulle lyff lete me nevyr Me, 

Bat lete me leve evyr to thi pay. 

Abraham my name is kydde. 

And patryarke of age ful olde ; 
And 3 it be the grace of God is bredde. 

In myn olde age, a chylde fuUe bolde, 
Ysaac, lo ! here his name is tolde, 

My swete sone that stondyth me by, 
Amonges alle chylderyn that walkyn on wolde, 

A lovelyer chylde is non trewly. 

I thanke God with hert welle mylde. 

Of his gret mercy and of his hey grace. 
And pryncepaly fiTor my suete chylde. 

That xal to me do gret solace. 
Now, suete sone, fiPayre fare thi fface, 

fful hertyly do I love the, 
ffor trewe herty love now in this place. 

My swete childe, com, kysse now me. 

E 



50 COVENTRT MTSTERIES: 

Ysaac. At 30ure byddynge 3our mouthe I kys, 

With lowly hert I 30W pray, 
30ure fadyrly love lete me nevyr mysse. 

But blysse me, 30ur chylde, bothe nyght and day. 
Abraham. Almyghty Ood, that best may. 

His dere blyssyng he graunt the. 
And my blyssyng thou have alle way, 
3 ^ In what place that evyr thou be. 

Now, Ysaac, my soiie so suete, 

Almyghty Grod Idke thou honoure, 
Wiche that mad^ bothe drjre and wtste, 

Shynyng sunne and scharpe ^choure. 
Thu art my stiete child^, and par amoure 

fful wele in herte do I the love, 
Loke that thin herte, in h«ivyti toUr^ 

Be sett to s^rvfe oure Lord Gkxl above. 

In thi 3onge leme God to plese^ 

Aiud God xai quyte the weyl thi mede : 
Now, suete sone, of wordys these 

With alle thin hertthou take good hede* 
Now fare weyl, sotie, God be thin spede 1 

Evyn here at bom tiiou me abyde, 
I must go walkyn, tht I have nede, 

I come a3en witfainne a tyde. 

Ysaac. I prtiy to God^ fibdyr of myght, 

That he 30W spede in alle 30ur waye, 
From shame and sheoshipp, dliy and nyht, 

God mote 30W kepe in 30ur jomay. 
Abraham. Now fare weylle, sone ! I thd pmy 

Evyr in thin hert l<^e God thou wynde, 
Hym to serve, bothe nyght and day,— - 

I pray to God sende the good mynde. 



ABRAHAM'S 8AGRIFICE. 01 

Ther maj no man love bettyr his childe^ 

Than Isaac is lovyd of me ; 
Ahnyghty Gkxl, mercyful and mylde, 

ffor my swete son I wurchyp the ! 
I thank the. Lord, with hert fill fre^ 

ffor this fiiyr firute thou hast me sent. 
Now, gracyous God, wher so he be. 

To save my sone evjnr more be bent 

Dere Lord, I pray to the also. 

Me to save for thi serwaunte ; 
And sende me graee nevyr for to do 

Thyng that xulde be to thi displesaunta. 
Bothe ffor me and for myn infamite, 

I pray the, Lord God, us to help,— 
Thy gracyous goodnes thou us grawnt, 

And save thi servaunt from belle qwelp. 

Angehis. Abraham, how 1 Abraham, 

Lyst and herke weylle onto me. 
Abraham. Al redy, sere, here I am ; 

Telle me 30ur wylle what that it be. 
Angelus. Almyghty God thus doth bydde the^ — 

Ysaac thi sone anon thou take. 
And loke hym'thou slee anoon, lete se. 

And sacrafice to God hym make. £c 

Thy welbelovyd childe thou must now kylle. 

To God thou o£fyr hym, as I say, 
Evyn upon 3on hey hylle. 

That I the shewe here in the way. 
Tarye not be nyght nor day. 

But smertly thi gate thou goo ; 
Upon 3on hille thou knele and pray 

To God, and kylle the childe ther and sdoo ! 

b2 



60 



„^» t 



•• Z,KIZS0 



Ysaac. 

With 
30ure \\\ 

But 1' 
Abrahitti' 

His il. 
And my i 

In whu 



. ^^« .<..i.r»i. :::uav it*uv:f 16 June, 

... ..t» ^ •m^isC. 
. I A.iV* f'» ftViiO : 

* • 



•"> 



Now, Wi:: 

Almyglj'. 
Wiche that . 
Shynyntr . 

Thu art niv 

fful wele i:. 
Loke that Ihi: 

Be sett to s " 

In thi 3onge l«'i 

And God xal * 
Now, suete soue, . 

With alle thin i 
Now fare weyl, soi 

Evyn here at hu. 
I must go walkyn, 

I come a3en witi^ 



Ysaac, I pray to (i< 

That he 30W sped* 
From shame and shei 

God mote 30W kep« 
Abraham. Now fare v 

Evyr in thin hert lo 
Hym to serve, bothe 11 

I pray to God semle 



. „,«!,,'«;•**« IBP! 



xhemie 



.«K ttW, 






,V„.,^at5-«*rite. 









%UUt<i 



ibou ukie*. 



ir 



ABRAHAM'S SACRIFICE. 58 

Ysaac. ffayr fiftdyr, 30 go ryght stylle, 

I pray 30W, fadyr, speke onto me. 
Abraham. Mi gode childe, what is thi wylle ? 

Telle me thyn hert, I pray to the. 
Vsaac. fiadyr, fyre and wood here is plenty, 

But I kan se no saeryfice ; 
What 30 xulde ofiVe fayn wold I se, 

That it were don at the best avyse. 

Abraham. God xal that ordeyn that sytt in hevynne. 

My swete sone, ffor this offryng, 
A derrere saeryfice may no man nempne. 

Than this xal be, my dere derlyng. 
Ysaac. Lat be, good fadyr, 3our sad wepynge ! 

30ur hevy cher agrevyth me sore : 
Telle me, fadyr, 3our grett momyng, 

Aod I xal seke sum help therfore. 

Abraham. Alas ! dere sone, for nedys must me, 

Evyn here the kylle, as God hath sent ; 
Thyn owyn fadyr thi deth must be, — 

Alas ! that evyr this bowe was bent. 
With this fyre bryght thou must be brent. 

An aungelle seyd to me ryght so : 
Alas ! my chylde, thou xalt be shent ! 

Thi careful fadyr must be thi fiPo ! 

\Ysaac. Almyghty God, of his grett mercye, 
^ fful hertyly I thanke the sertayne : 
At Goddys byddyng here for to dye, 

I obeye me here for to be sclayne. 
I pray 30W, fadyr, be glad and fayne, 

Trewly to werke Goddys wylle : 
Take good comforte to 30W agayn. 

And have no dowte 30ur childe to kylle* 



54 COTENTRT MTSTEBIE8. 

ffor Grodys byddyng forsothe it is, 
That I of 30W m J deth schulde take : 

A3en8 Grod je don amys, 

Hys byddyng yf 36 xiild forsake. 

3owre owyn dampnacion xulde 30 bake. 
If 3e me kepe from this reed ; 

With 30ur swerd my deth 30 make^ 
{r,o <ADd werk evyrmore the wylle of Grod. 

Abraham^ The wylle of God must nedys be done ! 

To werke his wylle I seyd nevyr nay ; 
But 3it the fladyr to sle the sone. 

My hert doth clynge and cleve as clay. 
Yuute* 3itt werke Groddys wylle, fSeulyr, I 30W pray. 

And sle me here anoon forthe ryght, 
And turne fro me 30ur face away, 

Myne heed whan that 3e xul of smyght. 

Abrahttm. Alas i dere childe, I may not chese, — 

I must nedys my swete sone kylle I 
My dere derlyng, now must me lese, 

Myn owyn sybb blood now xal I spylle ! 
3itt this dede or I fulfylle, 

My swete sone, thi mouth I kys. 
Ysaac. Al redy, fadyr, evyn at30ur wylle 

I do 30ur byddyng, as reson is. 

Abraham. Alas ! dere sone, here is no grace. 

But nedis ded now must thou be ! 
With this kerchere I kure thi face, 

In the tyme that I sle the. 
Thy lovely vesage wold I not se. 

Not for alle this werdlys good : 
With this swerd, that sore grevyht me. 

My childe I sle and 6|)ylle his blood I 



ABBASAM'CI SACRIPICB. 00 

AngeluM. Abraham I Abraham I thou fiulyr fro. 

Abraham. I am here redy, what is 30ur wylle ? 
Angebu. Exji^ide thin hand in no degr^, 

I bjdde thou hym not kylle I 
Here do I se by ryght good skylle, 

Allemyghty God that thou dort drede. 
For thou spcuryst nat thi sone to spylle,-^ 

God wylle aqwhyte the welle thi mede. 

Abraham. I thank my Grod in hevyu above. 

And hym honowre for this grett grace ! 
And that my Lord me thus doth prove, 

I wylle hym wurchep in every place. 
My childys lyflT is my solace, 

I thank myn God evyr for his lyff, 
In sacrifice here or I hens pace, 

I sle this shape with this same knyfF. ^ <^o 

Now this shepe is deed and slayn, 

With this fyre it xal be brent ; 
Of Isaac my sone I am ful fayn. 

That my swete childe xal not be shent 
This place I name, with good entent. 

The hill^ of Godys vesjrtacion : 
fibr hedyr God hath to us sent 

Bis comforte, aftyr grett trybulacion. 

Angelus. Herke, Abraham, and take good heyd I 

By hymself Grod hath thus swome, 
ffor that thou woldyst a done this dede. 

He wylle the blysse bothe evyn and mome« 
ffpr thi dare childe thou woldyst have lorn. 

At Groddys byddyng, as I the telle ; 
Grod hath sent the word befom, 

Thi seed xal multyplye, wher so thou duelle. 



66 COVENTRY MTSTERIBS* 

As sterres in hevyn byn many and fele, 

So xal thi seed encrese and growe ; 
Thou xalt ovyrcome, in welthe and wele, 

AUe thi fomen reknyd be rowe.. 
As sond in the se doth ebbe and flowe. 

Hath cheselys many unnmnerabylle. 
So xal thi sede, thou mayst me trowe,- 

Encres and be evyr prophytabylle* 

ffor to my speche thou dedyst obeye, 

Thyn enmyes portes thou shalt possede ; 
And alle men on erthe, as I the seye, 

Thei xal be blyssed in thi sede, 
Ahnyghty God thus the wylle mede^ 

ffor that good wylle that thou ast done, 
Therfore thank God, in word and dede, 

Bothe thou thiself, and Ysaac thi soAe. 

Abraham. A ! my lord God to wurchep on kne now I fall^ ! 

I thank the, Lord, of thi mercy ! 
Now, my swete childe, to Grod thou kalle, 

And thank we that Lord now hertyly. 
Isaac. W^th lowly hert to God I crye, — 

I am his serwant bothe day and nyght ! 
I thank the, Lord, in hevyn so hy3e, 

With hert, with thought, with roayn, with myght ! 

Abraham, Gramercy, Lord, and k}mg of grace ! 

Gramercy, Lord over lordys alle ! 
Now my joye retumyth his trace, 

I thank the, Lorde, in hevyn thin halle. 
Isaac. (yrjT alle kynges crownyd kjmg, I the kalle ! 

At thi byddyng to dye with knyff, 
I was fful buxum evyn as thi thralle ; — 

Lord, now I thank the, thou grauntyst me lyiT. 



ABRAHAM'S SACRIFICE. 57 

Abraham. Now we have wurchepyd oure blyssyd lorde, 

On grounde knelyng upon oure kne ; 
Now lete us tweyn, sone, ben of on acorde. 

And goo walke bom into oure countre. 
Ytaac. ffadyr, as 36 wylle, so xal it be^ 

I am redy with 30W to gon ; 
I xal 30W folwe with hert f uUe fre ; 

Alle that 30 bydde me, sone xal be don, 

Abraham. Now, God alle thyng of nowth that made, 
y Evyr wurcheppyd he be on watyr and londe ! 
\ His gret honowre may nevyr more fade, 
) In felde nor town, se nor on sonde ! 
, As althyng. Lord, thou hast in honde, 
\ So save us alle, wher so we be, — 
\ Whethyr we syttjfn, walk, or stonde, 

Evyr on thin bandwerke thou have pyte ! 2^h 

EicplicU. 



VI. MOSES AND THE TWO TABLES, 



Iniraiim Moy$e$, 

He that made alle thynge of nought, 
Hevyn and erthe, bothe sunne and mone. 

Save alle that his hand hath wrought, 
Allemyghty God in hevyn trone ! 

I am Moyses that make this bone, 
I pray the, Lord God, with alle my mende. 

To us inclyne thi mercy sone, 



Thi gracyous lordchep lete us fynde 



1 



The to plesyn in alle degr^, 

Gracyous God and Lord ovyr alle. 
Thou graunte us grace, wher so we be. 

And save us sownd fro synfulle falle. 
Thy wylle to werke to us thi thralle, 

Enforme and teche us all thi plesans. 
In purenesse put us that nevyr not fisdle. 

And grounde us in grace (from alle grevauns. 

Hie Majfsei videns rubrum ardeniem admirande dicit, 

A I mercy, God, what menyth 3on syte ? 

A grene busche as fyre doth flame. 
And kepyth his colowre fayr and bryghte, 

ffresche and grene withowtyn blame. 



MOSES AND THE TWO TABLES. 69 

It fyguryth sumthjrnge of ryght gret farae, 

I kan not seyn what it may be, 
I wylle go nere, in Goddys name. 

And wysely loke this bnache to le. 
Deu$. Moyses, how ! Moyses^ 

Herke to me anon this stounde. 
MoyseM, I am here, Lorde, withowtyn les, 

30wre gracyoos wylle to do I am boonde. 
Deus. Thu take thi schon anon ful rownde 

Of thi fete in hast, lete se, 
fiEul holy is that place and grownde, 

Ther thou dost stonde, I sey to the. 
Moyses. Barfoot now I do me make. 

And pulle of my schon fro my fete : 
Now have I my schon of take, 

What is 30ur wylle, Lord? feyn wold I wete. 
Deus. Com nere, Moyses, with me to mete, 

These ^belleis I take the in thin honde. 
With my fiynger in hem is wrete 

Alle my lawys, thou undyrstonde. 

Loke that thou preche alle abowte, 

Hoo so wylle have frenshipp of me. 
To my lawys loke thei lowte, 

That thei be kept in alle degrd. 
Go forthe and preche anon, let se, 

Loke thou not ses nyght nor day. 
Moyses. }our byddyng, Lord, alle wrought xal be^ 

30ur wylle to werk I walk my way. 

*' Custodi precepta domini Dei tui." Deuirofwmifii vj.*" 

The comaundment of thi Lord God, man, loke thou kepe. 
Where that thou walk, wake, or slepe. 

Every man take good hede. 

And to my techynge take good intent ; 



60 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

For God hath sent me now indede^ 
30W for to enforme his comaundment ^ 

30W to teche God hath me sent, 

His lawys of lyff that am ful wyse ; 

Them to lern be dyligent, 
3oure soulys may thei save at the last asyse. 

The preceptes that taught xal be. 

Be wretyn in these tablys tweyn : 
In the fjrrst ben wretyn thre, 

That towche to God, this is serteyn. \^ 
In the secund tabyl be wretyn ful pleyn. 

The tother vij. that towche mankende : 
Herk now welle, man, what I xal seyn, 

And prent thise lawys welle in thi mende. 

Primum mandatum. '* Non habebis Deos alienos.'^ 

The fyrst comaundement of God, as I 30W say, 

Of the fyrst tabyl forsothe is this. 
Thou xalt have, neythyr nyght nore day, 

Noon other God but the kyng of blysse. 
Undyrstonde wele what menyth this. 

Every man in his degr^, 
And sett nevyr 30ur hert amys, 

Upon this werdlys vanyt^. 

ffor if thou sett thi love so sore 

Upon ryches and werdly good, 
Thi wurdly rycches thou takyst evermore 

Evyn for thi God, as man ovyr wood ; 
Amend the, man, and chaunge thi mood, 

Lese not thi sowle for werdlys welthe, 
Only hym love whiche bodyly (food 

Doth 3eve alle day, and gustly helthe. 



MOSBS AND THE TWO TABLES. 61 

Secundum mandatum. '* Non assumens nomen Dei tui 

in vaDum." 

The secuDd precept of the fyrst tabylle, 

The name of God take nevyr in vayne, 
Swere none othis be noon fals fabylle, — 

The name of God thou nevyr dysteyn. 
Bewhare of othis for dowte of peyn, 

Amonges ffelachepp whan thou doet sy tt, 
A lytyl othe, this is serteyn. 

May dampne thy sowie to helle pytt. 

Man, whan tliou art sett at the nale, 

And hast thi langage as plesyth the, 
Loke thin othis be non or smale, 

And 3ett alwey loke trewe thei be. 
But swere not oftyn by rede of me, 

ffor yf thou use oftyn tyroe to swere, 
It may gendyr custom in the ; 

Byware of custom, fiTor he wyl dere. 

Terciumnumdatum, *^ Memento ut sabbatum sanctificet.^ 

The iij.*** comaundment of God, as I rede, 

Dothe bydde the halwe welle thin halyday, 
Kepe the welle ffro synfulle dede, 

And care not gretly ffor ryche aray. 
A ryght pore man, this is non nay, 

Of sympyl astat in clothis rent. 
May be bettyr than ryche with garmentes gay, 

Oftyn tyme doth kepe this comaundment. 

ffor ryche men do shewe oftyntyme pompe and pride. 

On halydayes, as oftyn is sene ; 
Whan pore men passe and go besyde. 

At wurthy festys riche men wolle bene. 



62 COVENTRT MT8TERIES. 

Thyn halyday thou kepyst not clene 

In gloteny to lede thi lyff. 
In Goddys hous 36 xulde be-dene 

Honoure your God, bothe mayden and wyff. 

Quartum Mandatum. '' Honora patrem tuum et ma- 
trem tuam." 

Off the secunde tabylle the fyrst comaundment, 

And in the ordyr the iiij.% I sey m fisiy. 
He byddyth the evermore with hert bent, 

Bothe ffiEulyr and modyr to wurchep alway. 
Thow that thi fadyr be pore of array. 

And 30W never so ryche of golde and good, 
3itt loke thou wurchep hym nyght and day. 

Of whom thou hast bothe fiiesche and blood. 

In this comaundmente includyd is 

The bodyli fadyr and naodyr also, 
Includyd also I fynde in this, 

Thi gostly fadyr and modyr therto. 
To thi gostly ffadyr evyr reverens do, 

Thi gostly modyr is holy cherche ; 
These tweyn save thi sowle fro woo, 

Ever them to wurchep loke that thou werche. 

Quintum mandatum. *^ Non occides." 

The fiyfft comaundement byddyth alle us, 

Scle no man, no whight that thou kylle ; 
Undyritonde this precept thus, 

Scle no wyght with wurd nor wylle. 
Wykkyd worde werkyht oftyntyme grett ille. 

Be war therfbre of wykkyd langage, 
Wyckyd speche many on doth spylle, 

Therfore of speche bethe not owtrage. 

Sextum mandatum. " Non makaberis/' 



HOSBS AND THE TWO TABLES. 6S 

The sexte comaundetnent byddith every man, 

That no wyght lede no lecberous lay, 
fforfett never be no woman, 

Leeae than the lawe alowe thi play. 
Trespas nevyr with wyff, ne may, 

With wedow, nor with non othyr wyght ; 
Kepe the cleue, as I the say. 

To whom thou hast thi trowth plyght. 

Septimum mandatum. ^ Non furtum facies."^ 

Do no tbefte, no thynge thou etele, 

The vij.^ precept byddyth the ful sore ; 
Whylle thou arte in welthe and wele, 

Evylle gett good loke thou restore* 
Off handys and dede be trewe evynnore, 

ffor yf thin handys lymyd be, 
Thou art but shent, thi name is lore. 

In ffelde and towne, and in alle country. 

Octavum mandatum. ^^ Non loqueris contra proximum 
tuum falsum testimonium.*' 

The viij.** precept thus dotti the bydde> 

fiieds wyttnes loke non thou bere. 
The trowthe nevyr more loke that thou hyde. 

With ffals wyttnes no man thou dere. 
Nowther ffor love, ne dred, ne fere, 

Sey non other than trowthe is, 
ffals wytnes yf that thou rare, 

A3ens God thou dost grettly amys. 

Nanum mandatum. ^^ Non desiderabis uxorem proximi 
tui, etc." 

The ix.** precept of lawe of lyff, 

Evyn thus doth bydde every man, 
Desyre not thi neybores wyff, 

Thow she be fayr and whyte as swan, 



64 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And thi wyff brown ; 3itt natt for- than 
Thi neybores wyff thou nevyr rejoyse, 

Kepe the clene, as evyr thou can. 

To thin owyn wyff, and thin^owyn choyse. 

Decimum mandatum. ** Non concupisces domum 
proximi tui, non servum, non ancillam, non bos, non 
asinum, nee omnia quae illius sunt, etc.*' 

The x.^ comaundement of God and last is this, 

Thi neybores hous desyre thou nowth, 
Maydon, nor servaunt, nor nowth of his, 

Desyre hem nevyr in wylle nor thowth. 
Oxe nere asse that he hath bought, 

Nere no thynge that longyht hym to, 
Godys lawe must nedys be wrought, 

Desyre no thynge thin neybore ffro. 

The vj.^ comaundement of lechery 

Doth exclude the synfulle dede. 
But iheys tweyn last most streydy, 

Bothe dede and thought thei do forbede. 
In wylle nere thought no lechory thou lede, 

Thi thought and wylle thou must refreyn, 
Alle thi desyre, as I the rede. 

In clennes of lyff thiself restreyn. 

ffrendys, these be the lawys that 5e must kepe, 

Therfore every man sett welle in mende, 
Wethyr that thou do wake or slepe. 

These lawys to leme thou herke ful hynde. 
And Godys grace xal be thi ffrende. 

He socowre and save 30W in welthe fro woo ! 
ffare welle, gode frendys, for hens wyU I wende, 

My tale I have taught 30W, my wey now I goo. 

\ ExplkU Mayses. 



VIL THE PROPHETS- 



Ysaias. 
I am the prophete callyd Isaye, 

Replett with Godys grett influens. 
And sey jieynly, be spyryte of prophecie, 

That a clene mayde, thourghe meke obedyens, 
Shalle here a childe whiche xal do resystens 
\Ageyn foule 3abulon^ the devyl of helle, 
Mannys soule ageyn hym to defens^— 

Opyn in the felde the fend he xal felle. 

Wherefore I seye quod virgo concipiet 

Et pariet filium nomen Emanuel, 
Oure lyf for to save he xal suffyr dethe^ 

And bye us to his blysse in hevyn for to dwelle \ 
Of sacerdotale lynage, the trewth I 30W telle, 

£9iesche and blood to take God wylle be borne ; 
Joye to man in erth^ and in hevyn aungelle 

At the chyldys byrthe joye xal make that mom. 

Radix Jesse. 
Egredietur virga de radice Jesse, 

Et flos de radice ejus ascendet. 
A blyssyd braxmche xal sprynge of me. 

That xal be swettere than bawmys brethe ; 
Oute of that braunche, in Nazareth 

A flowre xal blome of me, Jesse rote. 
The whiche by grace xal dystroye dethe, 

And brynge mankende to blysse most sote. 



^' 



66 COVENTRY MT8TERIES. 

Davyd Rex. 
I am Davids of Jesse rote^ 

The fresche kyng by naturalle successyon. 
And of my blood, xal sprynge oure bote, 

As God hymself halii mad promyssyon ; 
Of regalle lyff xal come sucbe foyson. 

That a clene mayde modyr xal be, 
Ageyns the devellys fals illusyon. 

With regalle power to make man fre. ^'^ 
Jeremioi propheta. 
I am the prophete Jeremye, 

And fulliche acorde in alle sentence 
With kyng David and with Ysaie, 

Aflermynge pleynly befom this audyens. 
That Qod of his highe benyyolens, 

Of prest and kynge wylle take lynage, 
And bye ns aUe ffrom oure offens, 

In hevyn to have his herytage. 

Saiamon Rex. 
I am Saiamon the secunde kynge, 

And that worthy temple for sothe made I, 
Whiche that is fygnre of that mayde 3ynge, 

That xal be modyr of grett Messy. 
ExecMel propheta . 
A vysion of this, £ful veryly, 

I Ejechiel have had also, 
Of a gate that sperd was trewly, 

And no man but a prince myght tberin go. 

Roboas Rex. 
The iij> kynge of the jentylle Jesse, 

My name is knowe, kyng Roboas, 
Of oure kynrede ^itt men xul se 

A clene mayde trede downe foule Sathan^ji^ 
Micheas propheta. 
And I am a prophete calde Mycheas, 

I telle 30U pleynly that thus it is. 



THE PROPHETS. 67 

Evyn lyke as E^e modyr of wo was. 

So xal a maydyn be modyr off blyss. 

Abias Rex* 

I, that am calde kjrnge Abias^ 

Conferme for trewe that 36 ban seyd ; 

And sey also as in this cas, 

That alia oure myrthe comyth of a mayd. 

Dimyel propheia. 

I prophete Danyd am welle apayed. 

In fygure of this I saw a tre ; 

Alle the fendys of belle xalle ben affrayd,) 

Whan maydenys ffrute theron thei se. 

Asa Rex. 

I, kynge Asa, beleve alle this. 

That God wylle of a maydyn be borne. 

And, us to bryngyn to endles blys, 

Ruly on rode_be rent and torn* 

Sanaa propheta. 

I, Jonas, sey that on the iij.^ mom 

ffro dethe he xal ryse, this is a trewe talle^ 

Fyguryd in me, the wliiche longe befom ^ 

Lay iij. days beryed within the qwalle. 

Josophai rex. 

And I, Josophat, the vj.'' kynge serteyne, 

Of Jesse rote in the lenyalle successyon, 

Alle that my progenitouris hath befor me seyn, 

ffeythfully beleve withowtjm alle dubytacion. 

Abdias propheta. 

I, Abdias prophete, make this protestacion. 

That aftyr he is resyn to lyve onys a3en, I 

Dethe xal be drevjm to endles dampnacion, I 

And lyff xal be grawntyd of paradys ful pleyn. 

JoraB Rex, 

And I, Joras, also in the numbre of sefne. 

Of Jesse rote kynge, knowlyche that he 

F 2 



\\ 



68 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Aftyr his resurreccion retume xal to hefne, 

Bothe God and verry man ther endles to be. 
Abacuche propketa. 
\, Abacuche prophete, holde wele with the. 

Whan he is resyn he xal up stye, 
In hevyn as juge sitt in his se, \ 

Us for to deme whan we xal dye. ^ 

Ozia8 Rex, 
And I3 Ozyas^ kynge of hygh degr^, 

Spronge of Jesse rote, dare welle sey this, 
Whan he is gon to his dygnyt^. 

He xal send the sprytt to his disCyplis. 

Joelle prqpheta. 
And I, Joel, knowe fuUe trewe that is, 

God bad me wryte in prophesye. 
He wolde sende downe his sprytt i-wys. 

On 3onge and olde ful sekyrlye. 

Joathas rex. 
My name is knowe, kyng Joathan, 

The ix.* kynge spronge of Jesse, 
Of my kynrede God wol be man, 

Mankend to save, and that joyth meA 
Affffetis propheta. 
With 30W I do holde that am prophete Aggee, 

Com of the same hygh and holy stok, 
God of oure kynrede in dede bom wyl be^ 

ffrom the wulf to save al shepeof his flok. 

Achas rex. 
Off Jesse kyng Achas is my name. 

That falsly wurchepyd ydolatrye, 
Tyl Ysaie putt me in blame. 

And seyd a mayd xulde here Messye. 

OzyoB propheta. 
Off that byrthe wy ttnes here I, 

A prophete Osyas men me calle. 



THE PROPHETS. 69 

And aftyr that tale of Isaye, 

That mayd xal here Emanuelle. 

Ezechias rex. 
My name is knowyn, kyng E}echias, 

The xj.** kyng of this geneologye. 
And say ffbrsothe, as in this cas, 

A mayde be mekenes xal brynge m ercy^ .^* 
Scphosas propheta. 
I a prophete callyd Sophonye, 

Of this matyr do here wy ttnes. 
And for trowth to sertyfie, 

That maydens byrthe oure welthe xal dresse. 

Manasses rex. 
Of this nobylle and wurthy generacion, 

The xij. kyng am I Manasses, 
Wyttnessynge here, be trew testyficacion, 

That maydenys childe xal be prince of pes. 
Baruk propheta. 
And I, Baruk prophete, conferme wurdys thes. 

Lord and prince of pes, thow that chylde be, 
Al his fomen ageyn hym that pres, 

Ryght a grym syre at domy^ay xal he be. 

Amon rex. 
Amon kynge, fFor the last conclusyon, 

Al thynge beforn seyd fFor trowthe do testyfie, 
Praynge that lord of oure synne remyssyon,\ 

At that dredful day he us graunt mercye. / 

Thus we alle of this genealogye, 

Accordynge in on here in this place. 

Pray that hey3 lorde whan that we xal dye. 
Of his gret goodnesse to grawnt us his grace ! 

Explicit Jesse, 



Vni. THE BARRENNESS OF ANNA. 



Contemplado. Cryst conserve this congregacion 

Fro perellys past, present, and future, 
And the personys here pleand, that the pronunciacion 

Of here sentens to be sejd mote be sad and sure. 
And that non oblocucyon make this matere obscure, 

But it may profite and plese eche persone present, 
ffrom the gynnynge to the endynge so to endure, 

That Cryst and every creature with the concejrte be content. 

This matere here mad is of the modyr of mercy. 
How be Joachym and Anne was here concepcion, 

Sythe offred into the temple, compiled breffly. 

Than maryed to Joseph, and so folwyng the salutacion. 

Metyng with Elyzabeth and therwith a conclusyon. 
In fewe wurdys talkyd, that it xulde nat be tedyous. 

To lemyd nyn to lewd nyn to no man of reson. 

This is the processe, now preserve 30W Jhesus ! 

Thereffore of pes I 50W pray alle that ben here present. 

And take bed to oure talkyn what we xal say, 
I be-teche 30W that lorde that is evyr omnypotent. 
To goveme 30W in goodnes, as he best may. 
In hevyn we may hym se. 
Now God that is hevyn k3mge, 
Sende us alle hese dere blyssynge. 
And to his towre he mote us brynge. 
Amen, ffor charytd ! 



THB BARRENNESS OF ANNA. 71 

Ysakar. The prestys of God offre sote ensens 

Unto here God, and therfore they be holy ; 
We that mynistere here in Goddys presens. 

In U8 xuld be fownd no maner of ffoly. 
Ysakar^ prynce of prestys, am I, 

That this holyest day here have mynystradon, 
Certyfyenge alle tribus in my cure specyaly. 

That this is the hyest fest of oure solennyjacion. 

This we clepeyef/«fii Encemdorum^ 

The new ffest of whiche iij. in the 3ere we exercyse i 
Now alle the kynredys to Jerusalem must cum. 

Into the temple of God here to do sacryfyse ; 
Tho that be cursyd my dygnyt^ is to dysspyse. 

And tho that be blyssyd here holy sacreiyse to take ; 
We be regal sacerdocium, it perteyneth us to be wysse. 

Be fitftyng, be prasmg, be almes, and at du tyme to wake. 

Joachym. Now alle this countr^ of Galyl^, 

With this cetye of Nazareth specyal. 
This ffest to Jerusalem must go we. 

To make sacrefyce to God etemah 
My name is Joaehym, a man in godys substancyalle, 

Joachym is to say, he that to God is redy. 
So have I be and evyr more xal, 

ffor the dredful domys of God sore drede I. 

I am clepyd ryghtful, why wole 30 se ? 

ffor my godys into thre partys I devyde, 
On to the temple and to hem that ther servyng be, 

Anodyr to the pylgrimys and pore men ; the iij.^ ffor hem 
withmeabyde. 
So xulde every curat in this werde wyde, 

3eve a part to his chauncel i-wys, 
A part to his parochoneres that to povert slyde, 

The thryd part to kepe for hym and his. 



72 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

But, blyasyd wyfFAnne, sore I drede 

In the temple tliis tyme to make sacryfiee ; 
Becawse that no frute of us dothe procede, 

I fere me grettly the prest wole me dysspice. 
Than grett slawndyr in the tribus of us xulde aryse; 

But this I aTow to God, with alle the mekenes I can, 
jyff of iiis mercy he wole a childe ua devyse, 

We xal offre it up into the temple to be Goddys man. 

Anna. }our swemfulwurdys make t«rys trekyl downe be my face, 

I-wys, swete husband, the fawte is in me ; 
My name is Anne, that is to sey, grace, 

We wete not how gracyous God wyl to us be. 
A woman xulde here Cryst, these profecyes have we, 

If God send frute and it be a mayd childe ; 
Withe alle reverens I vow to bis magestd, 

Sche xal be here foot-mayd to mynyster here most mylde, 

Joachym. Now lete be it as God wole, ther is no more, 

Tweyn turtelys ffor my sacryfiee with me I take ; 
And I heseche, wyff, and evyr we mete more, 

That hese grett mercy us meryer mut make. 
Anna. For dred and ffor swem of jour wourdys I qwake, 

Tliryes I kyssc jow with syghys ful sad ; 
And to the mercy of God mekely 1 30W betake. 

And the that departe in Borwe, God make ther metyng glad ! 

Senior tribus. Worchepful sere Joachym, be je redy now ? 

Alle sour kynrede ia come jow to exorte. 
That thei may do sacrifice at the t«mple with 30W, 

ffor }e be of grett wurcliep, as men 30W report. 
Joachym. Alle synfulle, seke, and sory, God mote comforte, 

I wolde I were as men me name ! 
Thedyr in Goildys name now late us alle resorte : 

A Anne, Anne, Anne, God scheeld us fro shame ! 



THE BARRENNESS OF ANNA. 78 

Jfine. Now am I left alone, sore may I wepe, 

A, husbond ! ageyn God wel mote 30W brynge ! 
And fro shame and sorwe he mote 30W kepe, 

Tyl I se 30W ageyn I kan not sees of wepynge. 
Senior. Prynqe of oure prestys, if it be 30ur plesynge, 

We be com mekely to make our sacrefice. 
Ysakar. God do 30W mede, bothe elde and 3ynge, 

Than devowtly we wyl begynne servyse. 

There they xal synge this seguenSj ^^ Benedicta sit becUa 
TVbdtas.** And in that tyme Ysakar with his ministeres en* 
sensythe the autere, and than thei make her offryng, and Isaker 
seyth^ 

Ck)myth up, serys, and offeryth alle now, 

30 that to do sacryfice worthy are : 
Abyde a qwyle, sere, whedyr wytte thou ? 

Thou and thi wjff am barrany and bare ; 
Neyther of 30W ffruteful nevyr 3ett ware, 

Whow durste thou amonge fruteful presume and abuse ? 
It is a tokyn thou art ciu*syd thare. 

Wherefore with grett indygnacion thin offeryng I refuse ! 

Et re/udit sacrificium Joachi. 

Amonge alle this pepyl barreyn be no mo. 

Therefore comyth up and offerjrth here alle : 
Thou, Joachym, I charge the fast out the temple thou go ; 

Than with Goddys holy wourde blysse 30W I shalle ! 

Et reditflendo. 
Mimstro catando. Adjutorium nostrum in nomine Domini ! 
Johns. Qui fecit ccelum et terram ! 
Minister. Sit nomen Domini benedictum ! 
Chorus. Ex hoc nunc et usque in sseculum 1 
Episcopus. Benedicat vos divina majestas et una deitas. 
Pater, et Filius, et Spiritus Sanctus ! Chorus, Amen. 

Signando manu cum cruce solenniter, et recedant tribus extra 
tenyphim. 



74 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Now of God and man blyssyd be 30 alle, 

Homward a3en now returne 36, 
And in this temple abyde we xaUe, 

To servyn God in Trinyt^. 

Joachym, A ! mercyfful Lord, what is this lyff? 

What have I do, Lorde, to have this blame ? 
ffor hevynes I dare not go hom to my wyff, 

And amonge my neybores I dare not abyde ffor shame. 
A Anne 1 Anne ! Anne ! al oure joye is tumyd to grame, 

ffrom 30ur blyssyd ffelacheppe I am now exilyd, 
And 36 here onys of this ffowle fame, 

Sorwe wyl sle 30W to se me thus revylyd. 

But son God soferjrth thjrs us must sofron nede, 

Now wyl I go to my shepherdys and with hem abyde. 
And ther evyrmore levyn in sorwe and in drede. 

Shame makyth many man his hed for to hyde. 
Ha ! how de 30, felas ? in 30W is lytel pryde. 

How fare 36 and my bestjrs ? this wete wolde I veryly. 
Primus pastor. A ! welcome hedyr ! blyssyd mayster, we pas- 
ture hem ful wyde. 

They be lusty and fayr and grettly multyply. 
How do 3e, mayster ? 3e loke al hevyly ! 

How dothe oure dame at hom ? sytt she and sowyht ? 
Joachym, To here the speke of here it sleyth myn hert veryly. 

How I and sche doth, God hymself knowythe I 
The meke God lyftyth up, the proude over-throwyht. 

Go do what 30 lyst ; se 30ur bestys not stray. 
Secundits pastor. Aftere grett sorwe, majrster, evyr gret grace 
growyht; 

Sympyl as we kan, we xal for 30W pray. 
Tertius Pastor. 3a, to pray ffor careful it is grett nede, 

We alle wul prey ffor 30W knelende, 
God of his goodnes send 30W good spede. 

And of 30ur sorwe 30W sone amende ! 



THE BARRENNESS OF ANNA. 76 

Joachym. I am nott wurthy. Lord, to loke up to hefne ! 

My synful steppjrs anvempnyd the grounde ; 
I loth folest that levyth thou, Lord, hyest in thi setys sefne. 

What art thou. Lord ? what am I wrecche werse than an hownde ? 
Thou hast sent me shame whiche myn hert doth wounde ; 

I thank the more herefore than for alle my prosperity : 
This is a tokyn thou lovest me, — now to the I am bounde ; 

Thou seyst thou art with hem that in tribulacion be. 

And ho so have the, he nedyth not care thanne ; 

My sorwe is feryng I have do sum offens 
Punchyth me, Lorde, and spare my blyssyd wyff Anne, 

That sytlyth and sorwyth ful sore of myn absens ! 
Ther is not may profyte but prayour to 30ur presens ; 

With prayores prostrat byfore thi person I wepe ; 
Have mende on oure avow, for 30ur meche magnyficens. 

And my lovyngest wyff Anne, Lord, for thi mercy kepe ! 

Anna. A ! mercy. Lord ! mercy 1 mercy ! mercy ! 

We are synfolest ; it shewyth that 36 send us alle this sorwe : 
Why do 36 thus to myn husbond. Lord ? why, why, why ? 

For my barynes he may amend this thiself and thou lyst to morwe. 
And it plese so thi mercy, the, my Lord, I take to borwe, 

I xal kepe myn avow qwyl I leve and leste, 
I fere me I have offendyd the ; myn hert is ful of sorwe : 

Most mekely I pray thi pety, that this bale thou wyl breste. 

Here the aungel descendiih the hefne tyngyngy 
'^ Exultet ccelum laudibusl 
ResuUet terra gavdiis ! 
Archangehrum gloria 
Sacra canunt solemnia." 

Joachym, Qwhat art thou, in Godd3rs name, that makyst me 
adrad? 
It is as lyth abowt me as al the werd were fere. 



76 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Angelus. I am an aungel of God come to make the glad ! 

God is plesyd with thin helmes, and hath herd thi prayere ; 
He aeyth thi shame, thi reprtfT, and thi terys cler : 

God is a vengere of synne, and not nature doth lothe ! 
Whos worahe that he sparytli and makyth barreyn her, 

He doth to shewe his myth and his mercy botlie .' 

Thu seest that Sara was nynly jer bareyn, 

Sche had a sun Ysaac, to whom God jaiF Ida blyssynge ; 
Rachel also had the same p6yn. 

She had a son Joseph, that of Egypt was kynge. 
A strongere than Sampson nevyr was be wrytynge, 

Nor an holyere than Samuel, it ia aeyd thus ; 
}ett here moderes were bareyn bothe in the gynnynge ; 

The concepcion of alle swyche, it is ful merrelyous. 

And in the lyke wyse Anne, that blyssyd wy(F, 

Sche xal here a childe xal hygthe Mary, 
Whiche xal be blyssyd in here body and have joys fFyff, 

And fFul of the Holy Gooat inspyred syngulyrly. 
Sche xal be offryd into the temple solemply, 

Tliat of here non evyl ffame xuld sprynge thus. 
And as Eche xal be bore of a harrany body. 

So of here xal be bore without nature Jhesus, 

That xal be savyour unto al mankende ! 

In tokyn, whan thou come to Jherusalem, to the gj-ldyn gate. 
Thou xalt mete Anne thi wyff, have this in thi mende ; 

1 xal spy here the same here sorwys to rebate. 
Joac/iym. Of this incomparahyl comfort I xal nevyr forgete 
the date, 

My Eorwe was nevyr so grett, but now my joy is more ; 
I xal horn in hast, be it nevyr so late. 

A, Anne ! blyssyd be that body of the xal be bore ! 
Now farewel, myri shephcrdys, governe 30W now wysly. 



THE BARRENNESS OF ANNA. 77 

Primus pastor. Have 30 good tydynges, mayster ? than we be 
glad! 
Joachym. Prayse God for me, for I am not wourthy ! 

Secundus pastor. In feyth, sere, so we xal with alle oure 
sowlys sad. 
Tertius pastor. I holde it helpfful that on of us with 30W be had. 
Joackym. Nay, abyde with 3our bests, sone, in Goddys blys- 
synge. 
Primus pastor. We xal make us so mery now this is be-stad, 
That a myle on 30ur wey 36 xal here us synge. 

Anne. Alas ! ffor myn husbond me is ful wo, 

I xal go seke hym what so evyr be-falle ; 
I wote not in erth whiche wey is he go, 

fiadyr of hefhe, ffor mercy to your ffete I falle. 
Angelus. Anne, thin husbond ryght now I was with-alle. 

The aungel of God, that bare hym good tydynge, 
And as I seyd to hym so to the sey I xal, 

Grod hath herd thi preyour and thi wepynge. 

At the goldyn gate thou xalte mete hym ful mylde. 

And in grett gladnes retume to 30ur hous ; 
So be proces thou xalt conseyve and here a childe, 

Whiche xalt hyght Mary, and Mary xal here Jhesus, 
Whiche xal be Savyour of alle the werd and us,— 

Aitere grett sorwe evyr grett gladnes is had ! 
Now myn inbasset I have seyd to 30W thus, 

Gooth in oure Lordys name, and in God beth glad ! 

Anne. Now blyssyd be oure Lorde and alle his werkys ay ! 

Alle heffne and erthe mut blysse 30W for this ! 
I am so joyful I not what I may say ! 

Ther can no tounge telle what joye in me is ! 
I to here a childe that xal here alle mannys blyss, 

And have myn hosbonde ageyn 3 ho mythe have joys more ? 



78 COVENTRY MTSTERIES. 

No creature in erthe is grauDtyd more mercy i-wys ! 
I xal hy3e me to the 3ate to be ther before. 

Here goth the aungel a^en to he/ne. 

A ! blyssyd be our Lord ! myn husbond I se. 

I xaUe on myn knes and to hym-ward crepe. 
Joackym. A ! gracyous wyff Anne, now frutefull xal be be I 

ffor joy of this metyng in my sowle I wepe ; 
Have this kusse of clennesse and with 30W it kepe. 

In Goddys name now go we, wyff, horn, to our bous. 
Anne. Ther was nevyr joy sank in me so depe. 

Now may we say, huslxuid, God is to os gracyous. 
Verily. 
Joachym. 3a, and if we have levyd wel here before, 
I pray the. Lord, thin ore. 
So mote we levyn evyr more. 

And be tbi grace more bolyly. 

Anne. Now horn-ward, husbond, I rede we gon, 

Byth hom al to our place. 
To thank God that sytt in trone. 

That thus hath sent us his grace. 



IX. MARY IN THE TEMPLE. 



Conien^lacio. Sovereynes, 36 han sen shewyd 30W before. 

Of Joachym and Anne here botheres holy metynge, 
How our lady was conseyvid, and how she was bore ; 

We passe ovyr that, brefiPnes of tyme consyderynge. 
And how our lady, in here tendyr age and 3yng, 

Into the temple was offryd, and so forthe proced. 
This sentens sayd xal be hire b^jmnyng, 

Now the Modyr of mercy in this be our sped ! 

And as a childe of iij. 3ere age here she xal appere, 

To alle pepyl that ben here present, 
And of here grett grace now xal 3e here. 
How she levyd evyr to Goddys entent 
With grace. 
That holy matere we wole declare, 
Jyl ffortene 3ere how sche dyd ffare 5 
Now of 30ur speche I pray 30W spare, 
Alle that ben in this place. 

Here Joachym and Anne, tviih oure lady betwen hem, beyng 
al in whyte as a childe of iij. ^ere age, presente here into the 
temple, thus seyng Joachym, 

Joachym. Blyssyd be oure Lord, flFayr ffrute have we now ! 

Anne, wyflF, remembyr wole 3e, 
That we made to Grod an holy avow. 

That oure fyrst childe the servaunt of God xulde be ! 
The age of Mary oure dowtere is 3ere8 thre, 

Therfore to thre personys and on God lete us here present j 



80 



C'OVKNTRY MYSTERIES. 



I 



I 

r 



The jonger she be drawyn the bettyr semytli rae, 

And for teryeng of our avow of God we myth be shent ! 
jjnfie. It is as 36 say, husbond, indede, 

Late U3 take Mary our dowter us betwen, 
And to the temple with here precede : 

Dowtere, the aungel tolde us }e xulde be a qwen ! 
Wole 36 go Be that lord 5our husbond xal ben, 

And lerne for to love hym and lede with hym sour lyf ? 
Telle 30ur ffadyr aad me her, )our answere let sen ; 

Wole 3e be pure maydyn and also Goddys wyff ? 
Maria, ffadyr and modyr, if it plesynge to 30W be, 

36 han mad 30ur avow, so ssothly wole I, 
To be Goddys chast servaunt whil lyff is in me, 

But to be Goddys wyff I was nevyr wurthy ; 
I am the sympelest that evyr was born of body, 

1 have herd 30W seyd God xulde have a modyr swete, 
That I may leve to se hire, God graunt me for his mercy, 

And abyl me to ley my handys undyrhire fayr fete. 
Ei genujlectet ad Deum. 

Joackym. I-wys, dowtere, it is wel seyd, 

36 answere and je were twenty }ere olde. 
Jnne. Whith 50ur speche, Mary, I am wel payd. 

Can 56 gon alone ? lett se beth bolde. 
Maria. To go to Goddys bous wole je now beholde, 

I am joyful thedyrward, as I may be, 
Joachym. Wyff, I ryght joyful oure dowter to beholde. 
Anne. So am I wys, husbond ; now in Goddys name go we 
Joachym. Sere, prince of prestes, and it plese 30W, 

We that were barreyn God hath sent a childe. 
To offre hero to Goddys service we mad oure avow, 

Here is the same mayde, Mary most mylde. 
Jsakar. Joachym, I have good mciide how 1 50W revyled, 

I am ryght joyful that God hatb sove 30W this grace. 
To be amonge fruteful now be 30 reconsylid, 

Come, swete Mary, come, 50 have a gracyous fece ! 



MART IN THE TEMPLE. 81 

Joachymflectendo ad Deum, ric dicens, 
Joackym. Now, fiadyr, and Sone, and Holy Gost, 

On God and personys thre ! 
We offre to the, Lorde of myghtes most, 

Oure dowtere thi servaunt evyr more to be ! 
Anna. Ther-to most bounde evyr more be we : 

Mary, in this holy place leve 30W we xalle ^ 
In Goddys name now up go 30 ! 

Oure fadyr, oure prest, lo ! doth 50W calie. 
Maria. Modyr, and it plese 30W, fyrst wole I take my leve 

Of my fadyr and 30W my modyr i-wys ; 
I have a fadyr in hefne, this I beleve. 

Now, good fiadyr, with that fadyr 30 me blysse ! 
Joachym. In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti ! 
Maria. Amen ! Now 38, good modyr. 
Anne. In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti ! 
Maria. Amen ! 
Maria, Now, oure Lord, thank 30W for this I 

Here is my fadyr and my modyr bothe. 
Most mekely I beseche I may 30W kys ; — 

Now for3eve me yf evyr I made 30W wrothe ! 

Et explexendo osculabit patrem et mairem. 

Joachym, Nay, dowtere, 3e offendyd nevyr God nor man ; 

Lovyd be that lord 30W so doth kepe ! 
Anne. Swete dowtyr, thynk on 3 our modyr An, 

30ur swemynge smytyht to myn hert depe. 
Maria, ffadyr and modyr, I xal pray for 30W and wepe, 

To God with al myn hert specyaly ; 
Blysse me day and nyght evyr her 3e slepe. 

Good flFadyr and modyr, and be mery. 
Jo€Lchym. A ! ho had evyr suche a chylde ? 

Nevyr creature 3 it that evyr was bore ! 
Sche is so gracyous, she is so mylde, — 

So xulde childyr to fadyr and modyr evyr more. 

a 



82 COVENTRY KYSTERIES. 

Arme. Than xulde thei be blyssyd and plese God sore ! 

Husbond, and it plese 30W not hens go we xal, 
Tyl Mary be in the temple above thore, 

I wold not for al erthe se here fal. 
JEpiscopus. Come, gode Mary, come, babe, I the calle ; 

Thi pas pratyly to this plas pretende, 
Thou xalt be the dowtere of God eternalle, 

If the fyftene grees thou may ascende ; 
It is meracle if thou do ; now God the dyffende 1 

ffrom Babylony to hevynly Jhenisalem this is the way ; 
Every man that thynk his lyf to amende, 

The fyftene psalmys in memorye of this mayde say, 
Maria I 

Maria / ei sic deincqps usque adftnem quindecim psalmorum. 

The fyrst degr^ gostly applyed, 

It is holy desyre with God to be. 
In trobyl to Crod I have cryed, 

And in sped that lord hath herde me. 

Ad Dominum cum tribularer clamavi, et exaudivit me. 

The secunde is stody with meke inquysissyon veryly. 
How I xal have knowynge of Godys wylle. 

To the mownteynes of hefne I have lyfte myn ey, 
ffrom qwens xal comyn helpe me tylle. 

Levavi ocuhs meos in monteSj unde veniat auonlium mthi. 

The thrydde is gladnes in mende in hope to be, 

That we xalle be savyd alle thus ; 
I am glad of these tydynges ben seyd to me, — 

Now xal we go into Goddys hous. 

Lietatus stim in hOSj qua? dicta sunt mihi : in domum Do- 
mini ibimus. 

The fourte is meke obedyence, as is dette, 
To hym that is above the planetes sefne ; 



HART IN THE TEMPLE. 88 

To the I have mjm ejm aette. 
That dwellys above the skyes in hefne ! 

Ad te tevavi ocuios measj qui habitas m catig. 

The ffyfte is propyr confessyon. 

That we be nought withowth God thus ; 
Bat Ood in us have habytacion, 

Peraventure oure enemyes shulde swelle us. 

Nm quia Dominus erat tn nobis, dicat nunc Israel: msi 
quia Dominus erat in nobis. 

The sexte is confidens in Goddys strenght alon, 
ffor of alle grace from hym comyth the strem : 

They that trust in God, as the mownt Syon, 

He xal not be steryd endles^ that dwellyth in Jherusalem. 

Qui cofifiduni in Domino^ sicut mons Syon, non comsnove- 
biiur in cetemumy qui habitat in Hierusalem. 

The sefte is undowteful hope of immortalytd, 

In oure Lorde is as gracy and mercy ; 
Whan oure Lord convertyth oure captivity. 

Than are we mad as joyful mery. 

In convertendo domus captivitatem Syon : facti sumus sicut 
consolati. 

The eyted is contempt of veyn glory in us, 
ffor hym that al mankende hath multyplyed; 

But yf oure Lord make here oure hous. 
They an laboryd in veyn that it have edyfied. 

Nisi Dominus {Bdificaverit domum, in vanum laboraverunt 
qui cedificant earn. 

The nynte is a childely for in dede. 

With a longyng love in oure Lorde that ay is ; 

g2 



84 COVENTRY MTSTERIBS. 

Blyssyd arn aUe they that God drede, 
Whiche that gon in his holy weys. 

Beati amnesy qui timent Dominum, qui ambulant in vOs efus. 

The tende is myghty soferauns of carnal temptacion, 
ffor the fleschly syghtes ben fers and fel ; 

Ofte 30ughe is ffowthe with with sueche vexacion, 
Than seynge God say, so clepyd Israel. 

Say>€ escpugnaverunt me ajuventute mea, dicat nwtc Israel. 

The elefnte is accusatyff confessyon of iniquity. 

Of whiche ful noyous is the noyis ; 
Fro depnes^ Lord, I have cryed to the ! 

Lord, here in sped my sympyl voys ! 

De pro/undue clamavi ad te, Domine ! Domine, exaudi 
vocem meam ! 

The twelfte is mekenes, that is fayr and softe, 
In mannys sowle withinne and withowte i 

Lord, myn herte is not heyved on lofte, 
Nyn myn eyn be not lokynge abowte. 

Dondney non est exaUatum cor meum, neque elati sunt oculi 
mei. 

The threttene is ffeyth therwith, 

With holy dedys don expresse ; 
Have mende, Lorde of Davyth, 

And of alle his swettnes ! 

Memento^ Domine^ David, et omnis mansuetudinis gus. 

The ffourtene is brothyrly Concorde i-wys, 

That norchych love of creatures echon ; 
Se how good and how glad it is, 

Bretheryn, ffor to dwelle in on. 

Ecce quam bonum, et quamjocundum habitarefratres in unum. 



MARY IN THE TEMPLE. 85 

The fyftene is gracyous with on acorde, 
Whiche is syne of Godly love^ semyth me ; 

Se now blysse, oure Lorde, 

Alle that oure lordys servauntes be. 

Ecee nunc, benedicUe Dondnum, omnes servi Dombri ! 

Episcopus. A ! gracyous Lord, this is a mervelyous thynge, 

That we se here alle in syght, 
A babe of thre 3er age so 3ynge, 

To come up these greeys so up ryght ; 
It is an hey meracle^ and by Croddys myght 

No dowth of she xal be gracyous. 
Maria, Holy fiadyr, I beseche 30W forthe ryght, 

Sey how I xal be rewlyd in Goddys hous. 

Episcopua. Dowtere, God hath 30vyn us commaundementes 
ten, 

Whiche shortely to say be comprehendyd in tweyn, 
And tho must be kept of alle Crysten men, 

Or ellys here jugement is perpetual peyn. 
3e must love God severeynly and 30ur evyn Crystyn pleyn, 

God fyrsst ffor his hy3 and sovereyn dygnyt^ : 
He lovyd 30W fyrst, love hym ageyn, 

ffor of love to his owyn lyknes he made the. 

Love ffadyr, Sone, and Holy Gost I 

Love God the Fadyr, ffor he gevyth myght ; 
Love God the Sone, ffor he gevyth wysdom thou wost ; 

Love God the Holy Gost, ffor he gevyth love and lyght. 
Thre personys and on God thus love of ryght. 

With alle thin hert, with alle thi sowle, with alle thi mende, 
And with alle the strenghthis in the be dyght, 

Than love thin evyn Crystyn as thiself withowtyn ende. 

Thu xalt hate nothynge but the devyl and synne : 
God byddyth the lovyn thi bcnlyly onmy ; 



66 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And as for 30ur8elf here, thus xal 3e begynne, — 

38 must serve and wurchep God here dayly ; 
ffor what pray3er with grace and mercy, 

Sethe have a resonable tyme to fede, / 
Thanne to have a labour bodyly. 

That therin be gostly and bodely mede. 
30ur abydynge xal be with 30ur maydenjrs ffyve, 

Whyche tyme as 3e wole have consolacion. 
Maria. This lyff me lyketh as my lyve : 

Of her namys I beseche 30W to have informacion. 
Episccpus. There is the fyrst Meditacion, 

Contryssyon, Compassyon, and Clennes, 
And that holy mayde Fruyssyon : 

With these blyssyd maydenes xal be 30ur besynes. 
Maria. Here is an holy ffelachepp, I fele 

I am not wurthy amonge hem to be : 
Swete systeres, to 30W alle I knele, 

To receyve, I beseche, 30ur chary td. 
Episcopus. They xal, dowtere, and on the tothere syde se, 

Ther ben sefne prestys indede. 
To schryve^ to teche, and to mynystryn to the, 

To leme the Goddys lawys and Scrypture to rede. 
Maria, ffadyr, knew I here namys, wele were I. 

Epi$capu8. Ther is Dyscressyon, Devocion, Dylexcion, 
and Deliberacion, — 
They xal tende upon 30W besyly ; 

With Declaracion, Determynacion, Dy vynacion ; 
Now go 3e, maydenys, to 30ur occupacion, 

And loke 30 tende this childe tendyrly ; 
And 3e, serys, knelyth,and I xal gyve 30W Goddys benyson. 

In nomine Patris et Filii et Spiritus Sancti 1 

Et recedent cum ministris sttis omnes virffines, dicenies 
" Amen." 

To 30W, ffadyr and modyr, I me comende, 
Blyssyd be the tyme 3e me hedyr brought. 



MARY IN THE TEMPLE. 87 

Joachym, Dowtere, the ffadere of oure feyth the mot defende^ 

As he of his myght made alle thynge of nowth. 
Anne. Mary, to the sowle solas he sende, 

In wbo6 wysdam alle this werd was wrought ! 
Go we now hens, husbonde so hende. 

For owth of care now are we brought. 

Hie Joachim et Anna recedent domum. 
Maria. Be the Holy Cost at horn be je brought, 

Systeres (ad virgines) 3e may go do what 36 xalle, 
To serve God fyrst here is al my thought, 

Befom this holy awtere on my knes I faUe 1 

Lord, sefiie petycions I beseche 30W of here, 

ffyrst that I may kepe thi love and thi lawe ; 
The secunde to lovyn myn evyn Crystyn as myself dere ; 

The thrydde from alle that thou hatyst me to withdrawe ; 
The fourte alle vertuys to thi plesauns knawe ; 

The fyfte to obey the ordenaryes of the temple echeon ; 
The sexte, and that alle pepyl may serve the with awe, 

That in this holy tempyl fawte be non. 

The sefnte, Lord, I haske with grett ffere, 

That I may se onys in my ly ve. 
That lady that xal Goddys sone here, 

That I may serve here with my wyttes fyve. 
If it plese 30W, and ellys it is not therwith to stryve, 

With prayers prostrat ffor these gracys I wepe : 
O, my God i devocion depe in me dry ve. 

That ray hert may wake in the, thow my body slepe. 

Here the aungel bryngyth manna in a cowpe of gold lyke to 
confecdonSy the hefne syngynge, the aungel sey thy 

Mgrveyle not, mekest maydone, of my mynystracion, 
I am a good aungel sent of God alle- myght, 

With aungelys mete ffor 3 our sustentacion, 
3e to receyve it ffor natural myght ; 



88 COVENTRY MYSTERIES, 

We Bungellys xul serve jow day and nyght : 

Now i'ede jow therwith in Goddya name. 
We xal ierne jow the lyberary of cure Lordys lawe lyglit, 

flFor my sawys in jow shewyth sygnes of siiame. 
Maria. To thank oure soveryen Lord not suffityth niy inende, 

I xal fede me of this fode my Lord halh me sent ; 
Alle niHncr of savowres in ihis mete [ fynde, 

I felt nevyr non so swete ner so redolent. 
Angelus. Eche day therwitli je xal be content ; 

Aunge alle howrys xal to jow apere. 
Maria, Mercy, my makere, how may this be ment ? 

I am the sympelest creature that is levynge here. 
Angelus. In jour name Maria ffyve letterys we lian, — 

M. Mayde most mercyfulte and mekest in mende ; 
A. Averte of the anguysche that Adam began ; 

R. Regina of regyon reyneng withowtyn ende j 
L Innocent bo influens of Jesses keode ; 

A. Advocat most autentyk jour autecer Anna, 
Hefne and helle here kneys down bende, 

Whan this holy name of jow is seyd, Mabia. 
Maria. I qwake grettly (For dred to here this comendacion ! 

Good swete aungel, why wole je aey thus? 
Aungelli'. flbr je xal hereaftere have a salutaciun, 

Tiiat xal this excede, it is seyd amonge us j 
The Deyt^ that dede xal determyn and dyscus, 

je xal nevyr, lady, be lefte here alone. 
Maria. I crye the mercy, Lurde, and thin erthe tus, 

Recomendyng me to that Godhyd that is tryne in trone. 

Hie osailet terram. Here xal comyn alwey an atmgel with 
dyverx preaentea, goynge and comyt^e, and in the iyme Ihei xal 
fynge in hefne this hympne. '' i/hexu corona virginum." And 
afUr Iher eomylh aminiiter fro the bttsckop vHth apreten^and 
teylh, 

Miiiisler. Prynce of oure prestes, Ysakare be name, 
He liath sent jow hymself his servyee in dede; 



MARY IN THE TEMPLE. 89 

And bad 36 xulde ffede 30W spare for no Bhame, 

In this tyme of mete no lenger 3e rede. 
Maria. Recomende me to my fadyr, sere, and God do hym 
niede, 

These vesselys a3en sone I xal hjrm sende ; 
I xal here it my systeres, I trowe thei have more nede, 

Goddys foyson is eyyr to his servauntes hendyr than we 
wende. 
Systeres, oure holy ffadyr Isakare 

Hath sent us hese servyce here ryght now ; 
ffede 30W therof hertyly, I pray 30W nat spare. 

And if owght beleve, specyaly I pray 30W, 
That the pore men the relevys ther of have now ; 

ffiiyn and I myth I wolde do the dedys of mercy ; 
Pore ffolk ffaryn Crod knowyth how. 

On hem evyr I have grett pety. 

Coniemplacio. Lo ! sofreynes here 30 have seyn. 

In the temple of oure ladyes presentacion. 
She was nevyr occapyed in thynges veyn. 

But evyr besy in holy ocupacyon ; 
And we beseche 30W of 30ure pacyens, 

That we pace these materes so lythly away, 
If thei xulde be do with good prevydens, 

Eche on wolde suffyce ffor an hoole day. 
Now xal we precede to here dissponsacion, 

Whiche aftere this was xiiij. 3ere, 
Tyme suiEcyth not to make pawsacion, 

Hath pacyens with us, we beseche 30W here. 
And in sh;rt spas. 
The parlement of hefne sone xal 36 se, 
And how Goddys sone come man xal he. 
And how the salutacion aftere xal be. 

Be Goddys holy gras. 



X. MARY'S BETROTHMENT. 



Tunc venit ab Ysakar espiscoptis. 

Lystenyth lordynges, both hye and lowe, 

And tendyrly takyth heyd onto my sawe, 
Beth buxom and benygne jour busshopp to knowe, 

ffor I am that lord that made this lawe. 
With hertys so hende herkyn nowe, 

30ure damyselys to weddying 3a loke that 30 drawe. 
That passyn xiiij. 3ere, ffor what that 36 owe, 

The lawe of God byddyth this sawe, 
That at xiiij. 3ere of age 
Every damesel, what so sche be. 
To the encrese of more plenty, 
Xulde be browght in good degr^, 
Onto here spowsage. 

Joachym. Herke now, Anne, my jentyi spowse. 

How that the buschop his lawe hath tolde. 
That what man hath a dowtyr in his house. 

That passyth xiiij. 3ere8 olde. 
He muste here brynge, I herde hym kowse. 

Into the tempyl a spowse to wedde, 
Wherfore oure dowtyr ryth good and dowse, 

Into the tempyl sche must be ledde. 
And that anoon ryght sone. 
Anne. Sere, I grawnt that it be so, 
A3en tlie lawe may we not do^ 
With here togedyr lete us now go, 

I hold it ryght weyl done. 



MARY'S BETBOTHMENT. 91 

Joackym. Sere bosshopp, here, aftyr thin owyn best. 

We have here brought oure dowtyr dere ; 
Mary, my swete childe, she is ful prest 

Of age, she is ful xiiij. jere. 
Episcopus. Welcome, Joachym, onto myn areste, 

Bothe Anne thi wyff and Mary clere ; 
Now, Mary, cbylde to the lawe thou leste. 

And chese the a spowse to be thi ffere. 
That lawe thou must ffulffylle. 
Maria* A3ens the lawe wyl I nevyr be. 
But mannys £Pelachep xal nevyr folwe me, 
I wyl levyn evyr in chastyt^ 

Be the grace of Goddys wylle. 

Episcopus. A ! £Payre mayde, why seyst thou so? 

What menyth the for to levyn chast ? 
Why wylt thou not to weddyng go? 

The cawse thou tell me, and that in hast. 
Maria. My ffaydr and my modyr sertys also, 

Er I was born, je may me trast, 
Thei were bothe bareyn, here frute was do j 

They come to the tempyl at the last, 
To do here sacryfice. 
Bycause they hadde nothyr frute nere cbylde, 
Reprevyd thei wore of wykkyd and wyllde. 
With grett shame thei were revylyd,— * 
Al men dede them dyspyce. 

My ffadyr and ray modyr thei wepte fuUe sore, 
flul hevy here hertys wem of this dede ; 

With wepyDge eyn thei preyd therfore 

That God wolde socowre hem and sende hem sede. 

Iff God wold grannt hem a childe be bore, 
They behest the cbylde here lyf xulde lede, 

In Goddys temple to serve evyrmore. 



92 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And wurchep God in love and drede. 

Than God fful of grace, 
He herd here longe prayour. 
And than sent hem bothe seed and flowre : 
Whan I was born in here bowre, 

To the temple offryd I was. 

Whan that I was to the temple brought. 

And o£Perde up to Crod above, 
Ther bested I, as myn hert thought, 

To serve my God with hertyly love. 
Clennesse and chastyt^ myn hert owth, 

Erthely creature nevyr may shove ; 
Suche clene ly£f xuld 3e nought 

In no maner wyse reprove ; 

To this clennesse I me take. 
This is the cawse, as I }ow telle. 
That I with man wylie nevyr melle, 
In the servyse of God wyl I evyr dwelle,— 
I wyl nevyr have other make. 

Episcoptis. A ! mercy God, these wordys wyse. 

Of this fajT mayde clene ; 
Thei trobyl myn hert in many wyse, 

Her wytt is grett, and that is sene ; 
In clennes to levyn in Godys servise. 

No man here blame non here tene, 
And 3it in lawe thus it lyce, 

That suche weddyd xulde bene : 

Who xal expownd this oute ? 
The lawe doth after lyff of clennes. 
The lawe doth bydde suche maydenes expres 
That to spowsyng they xulde hem dres : 
God help us in this dowhte ! 



hart's betrothment. 9S 

This ansuere grettly trobelyth me : 

To mak a vow to creatures it is leflFuI, — 
Vovete and reddite in Scripture have we, 

And to observe oure lawe also it is nedful. 
In this to dysceme to me it is dredful ; 

Therfore to cowcelle me in this cas, I calle 
The holde and the wyse and swiche as ben spedful. — 

In this sey 30ur avyse, I beseche 30W alle. 
Minister. To breke our lawe and custom it wore hard indede, 

And on that other syde to do a3en Scrypture ; 
To 3eve sentens in tliis degr^ 3e must take goo hede, 

ffor dowteles this matere is dyflFuse and obscure. 
Myn avyse here in this, I 30W ensure, 

That we prey alle God to have relacion ; 
ffor be prayour grett knowleche men recure, 

And to this I counselle 30U to 3eve assygnacion. 
Episccpus. Trewly 30ur counselle is ryght good and eylsum^ 

And as 3e han seyd, so xal it be : 
I charge 30W, bretheryn and systerys, hedyr 3e com, 

And togedyr to God now pray we, 
That it may plese his fynyte deyt^, 

Knowleche in this to sendyn us ! 
Mekely eche man ffalle downe on kne, 

And we xal begynne Veni Creator spiritus. 

Et hiccantent " Feni Creator}' Andwhan " Vem Creator"' 
is dotm, the buschop xal seyng^ 

Now, lord God, of lordys wysest of alle, 

I pray the, Lorde, knelyng on kne. 
With carefuUe lierte I crye and calle. 

This dowteful dowte enforme thou me. 
Angelas. Thy prayor is herd to hy3 hevyn halle, 

God hath me sent here downe to the, 
To telle the what that thou do xalle, 

And how thou xalt be rewlyd in iche degr^. 
Take tent and undyrstond. 



94 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

This is Goddjrs owyn byddyng, 

That alle kynsmen of Davyd the kyng, 

To the temple xul brynge here du offryng, 

With whyte 3ardy8 in ther honde. 

Loke wele what tyme thei offere there, 

Alle here 3ardys in thin hand thou take, 
Take hede whose 3erde doth blome and here. 

And he xal be the maydenys make. 
Episcopus. I thank the, Lord, with mylde chere, 

Thi wurde xal I werkjm withowtyn wrake ; 
I xal send for hem, bothjm fere and nere ; 

To werke thi wyl I undyrtake : 
Anon it xal be do. 
Herk, masangere, thou wend thi way, 
Davyd kynsmen, as I the say, 
Byd hem come ofiyr this same day. 

And brynge whyte 3ardys also. 

Nuncius» Oy ! al maner men takyth to me tent, 

That be owgth of kynrede to David the kyng } 
My lord the busshop hath for 30W sent. 

To the temple that 3e come with 3our ofiryng. 
He chargight that 3e hast 30W, for he is redy bent^ 

30W to receyve at 30ur comyng ; 
He byddeth 30W fferthermore in handys that 30 hent| 

A feyre white 3erde everyche of 30W 3e bryng. 
In hyght. 
Tary not, I pray 30W ; 
My lord, as I say 30W, 
Now to receyve so 

Is fulle redy dyght. 

Joseph. In great labore my lyff I lede, 
Myn ocupasyon lyth in many place, 



mart's betrothment. 95 

ffor febylnesse of age my jomey I may nat spede ; 

I thank the, gret God, of thi grace ! 

Primui generacionis David. 
What chere, Joseph, what ys the case. 

That ye lye here on this ground ? 
Josqph. Age and febylnesse doth me embrace, 

That I may nother welle goo ne stond. 

Secundus generaciams. 
We be commandyd be the beschoppys sond. 

That every man of Davyd kynrede. 
In the tempyll to ofiyr a wond ; 

Therfor in this jomey let us procede. 
Josqph. Me to traveylle yt is no nede, 

I prey you, frendes, go forth your wey. 

Tertiui generacwms* 
This come forth, Joseph, I you rede. 

And knowyth what the buschop woUe sey. 

QuartuB generaciom$. 
Ther ys a mayd whos name ys clepyd Mary, 

Doughter to Joachym, as it is told : 
Here to mary thei wolle asay 

To som man dowty and bold. 

Joseph, Benedicite, I cannot undyrstande 

What oure Prince of Prestes doth men. 
That every man xuld come and brynge with hym a whande, 

Abyl to be maryed, that is not I, so mote I then. 
I have be maydon evyr, and evyr more wele ben, 

I chaungyd not 3et of alle my long lyff ; 
And now to be maryed sum man wold wen, 

It is a straunge thynge an old man to take a 3onge wyff. 

But nevyr the lesse no doute of we must forth to towne. 
Now neybores and kynnysmen lete us forth go : 

I xal take a wand in ray hand and cast of my gowne, 
Yf I falle than, I xalle gronyn for wo. 



96 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Ho 80 take away my staff, I say he were my fo, 

3e be men that may wele ren go }e before ; 
I am old and also colde, walkjmg doth me wo ; 

Therfor now wole I to my staff holde I, this jurny to wore. 
Episcopus. Seres, 3e xal undyrstande 

That this is the cawse of our comynge. 
And why that eche of 30W bryngyth a wande, 

ffor of God we have knowynge. 
Here is to be maryde a mayde 3ynge, 

Alle 30ur roddys 3e xal brynge up to me ; 
And on hese rodde that the Holy Cost is syttynge, 

He xal the husbond of this may be. 

Hie portent virgas. 
JoBeph. It xal not be, I ley a grote, 

I xal abyde behynde prevyly ; 
Now wolde God I were at hom in my cote, 

I am aschamyd to be seyn veryly. 

Primus gener adonis David. 
To wurchep my lord God hedyr am I come, 

Here ffor to offyr my dewe offrynge, 
A fayr white 3arde in hand have I nome. 

My lord, sere busshop, at 30ur byddynge. 
Secundus generacionis David. 
Off Davythis kynred sertes am I com, 

A ffayr white 3arde in hand now I bryng ; 
My lord the busshop, after 30ur owym dom. 

This 3arde do I offre at 30ur chargyng, 
Ryht here. 
Tereius generaeionis David. 
And I a 3arde have bothe fayr and whyght. 
Here in myn bond it is redy dyght. 
And here I offre it forth within syght, 
Ryght in good manere. 
Quarttis generaeionis David. 
I am the fourte of Davidis kyn, 

And with myn offrynge my God I honoure ; 



MART*S BETROTH MENT. 97 

This fayr whjrte 3arde is offiyng myn, 

I trost in God of sum socoure. 
Com on, Joseph, with ofirynge thin. 
And biynge up thin, as we have oure. 
Thou taryst ryth longe behynde certeyn ; 

Why comyst not forth to Goddys toure ? 
Com on, man, for shame. 
Joseph. Com }a, 3a, God help, fulle fiayn I wdde, 
But I am so agyd and so oide. 
That bothe myn leggys gyn to folde, 

I am ny almost lame. 
Epi9Copu8. A ! mercy Lord, I kan no sygne aspy. 

It is best we go ageyn to prayr« 
Vox. He brought not up his rodde 3et trewly. 

To whom the mayd howyth to be maryed her. 
Episcojms. Whath, Joseph, why stande 3e there byhynde ? 

I-wys, sere, 3e be to blame. 
Joseph. Sere, I kannot my rodde ffynde ; 

To come ther in trow the me thynkyht shame. 
Episcoptts corny th, thens Joseph^ 
Sere, he may evyl go that is ner lame ; 

In sothe I com as fast as I may. • 

Episcqpus. Offyr up 3our rodde, sere, in Goddys name I 

Why do 3e not as men 30W pray ? 
Joseph. Now in the wurchep of God of hevyn, 

I oflfyr this 3erde bs lely whyte, 
Prayng that Lord of gracyous stewyn, 

With hert, with wytt, with mayn, with myght. 
And as he made the sterres seven, 

This sympyl offrynge that is so lyght. 
To his wurchep he weldyghe evyn, 

iFor to his wurchep this 3erd is dyghte. 
Lord God, I the pray, 
To my herte thou take good hede, 
And nothynge to my synful dede, 

H 



98 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

After my wyl thou qwyte my mede. 

As plesyth to thi pay. 
I may not lyfte myn handys heye^ 

Lo ! lo ! lo ! what so 50 now ? 
Episcqpus. A ! mercy 1 mercy ! metcy ! Lord, we crye. 

The blyssyd of God we se art thou. 

Et clamant omnes '* mercy ! mercy /" 
A ! gracyous God, in hevyn trone, 

Ryht wundyrful thi werkys be, 
Here may we se a merveyl one, 

A ded stok bery th floures ffre 1 
Joseph in hert, withoutyn mone, 

Thou mayst be blythe with game and gle, 
A mayd to wedde thou must gone, 

Be this meracle I do wel se. 
Mary is here name ; 
Joseph. What, xuld I wedde ? God forbede ! 
I am an old man, so God me spede, 
And with a wyff now to levyn in drede, 

It wore nejrther sport nere game. 
Episcopue. A}ens God, Joseph, thou mayst not stryye, 

God wyl that thou a wyff have ; 
This &yr mayde xal be thi wyve. 

She is buxum and whyte as lave. 
Joseph. A 1 shuld I have here ? 30 lese my lyff : 

Alas ! dere God, xuld I now rave ? 
An old man may nevyr thryff 

With a 3onge wyff, so God me save ! 
Nay, nay, sere, lett bene, 
Xuld I now in age begynne to dote. 
If I here chyde she wolde clowte my cote, 
Blere myn ey, and pyke out a mote, 

And thus oftyn tymes it is sena 
Episcopus. Joseph, now as I the saye, 

God hath assygnyd here to the ; 



MARY S BETROTHMKNT. 99 

^¥hat God wol have do, eey thou not nay, 

Oure lord God wyl that it be ao ! 
Joteph. Ajens my God not do I may, 

Here wardeyn and kepere wyl I evyr be ; 
But fayr maydon, I the pray, 

Kepe the clene, as I xal me ; 
I am a man of age. 
Therfore, sere busshop, I wyl that 36 wete. 
That in bedde we xu! nevyr meb;, 
ffor i-wys mayden suete 

An old man may not rage. 
Ejnacopia. This holyest virgyn xalt thou maryn bow, 

jour rodde foreschyth fayrest, that man may se ; 
The Holy Gost we se syttyht on a bow ! 

Now 3elde we alle preysyng to the trenyti. 

El kic cantent, " Benedicta sit beata TVinilat." 
Joseph, wole 36 have this maydon to jour wyfl", 

And here honour and kepe, as je howe to do ? 
Joseph. Nay, sere, so mote I thryff, 

I have ryght no nede therto. 
Episcopus. Joseph, it is Goddys wyl it xuld be so ! 

Sey aftyr mo, as it is skyi, 
Joseph. Sere, and to performs his wyl I bow therto, 

ffor alle thynge owyght to ben at his wyl. 
Epiacopus, et idem Joseph. 
Sey than ri^ me, — " Here I take the, Mary, to wyfF, 

To havyn to hoidyn, as God his wyl with us wyl make ; 
And as long as betfawen us lestyght oure lyfF, 

To love jow as myselff, my trewthe I jow lake." 
Nune ad Mariam sic diceru episcopus, 
Mary, wole je have this man. 

And hym to kepyn as jour lyff? 
Maria. In the tenderest wyse, fadyr, as 1 kan 

And with alle my wyttys ffyff. 



100 COVENTBY MYSTERIES. 

Epiicoput. Joseph, with this ryng now wedde thi wyff, 

And be here hand now thou here take. 
Joseph. Sere, with this rynge I wedde here ryff. 

And take here now here ffor my make. 
Epiacopui. Mary, raayd, witlwutyn more stryff, 

Onto thi spowse thou hast him take. 
Maria. In chastyt^ to ledyn my !yff, 

I xal hym nevyr forsake, 

But evyr with hym abyde : 
And, jentylle spowse, as ^e an seyd, ^ 

Lete Qie levyn as a clene mayd, 
I xat be trewe, be not dysmayd, 

Bothe terme, tyme, and tyde. 



Epiacopus. Here is the holyest matremony tliat ovyt was 
in this werd. 

The hyj name^s of oure lord we wole now syng hy. 
We alle wole tliis solenipn dede recorde 

Devowtly. Alma chorus Domini nunupaDgatnomiuaSummil 
Now goth hom alle in Godys name. 

Where as }our wonyng was before ; 
Maydenys, to lete here go alone it wore shame, 

It wold hevy jour hertes sore: 
je xal blysEC the tyme tliat sche was bore, 

Now loke 36 at hom here brynge. 
Maria. To have jour hlyssyng, fFaydr, I falle jow before. 
Epiacopua. He blysse jow that hath non hendyng, 
In nomine Patris et Fiiii et Spiritus Saocti ! 
Episcopux. Joseph, thiselph art old of age. 

And thi wyff of age is jonge; 
And as we redyn in old sage. 

Many man is sclepyr of tonge. 
Therfore evyl langage for to swage. 

That jour good fame may leste longe, 
iij. dymysellys xul <lwelle with jow in stage, 

With thi wyfT to be evyrmore amonge. 



mart's betrothment. 101 

I xal these iij. here take ; 
Susaime the fyrst xal be, 
Rebecca the secunde xal go with the, 
Sephore the thrydde, — ^loke that 3e thre 

This maydon nevyr 3e forsake. 
iSlKMOifie. Sere, I am redy att 3oar wylle. 

With this maydon for to wende. 
Rebecca. 30ur byddyng, sere, xalle ffaMyl, 

And £Eblwe this maydon fiayr and hende. 
Sephor. To ffolwe hyre it is good skyl, 

And to 30ur byddynge wole I bende. 
Joeepk. Now, sere buschop, hens go I wyl. 

For now comyth <mto my mende 
A matere that nedful is. 
BijpiMCOiptu. fiarewel, Joseph and Mary clere, 
I pray God kepe 30W alle infere, 
And sende 30W grace in good manere 

To serve the kynge of blysse. 
Maria, fiadyr and modyr, 3e knowe this cas, 

Whow that it doth now stonde with me ; 
With myn spowse I must forth passe. 

And wott nevyr whan I xal 30W se ; 
Therfore I pray 30W here in this plas, 

Of 30ur blyssynge for chary t^ ; 
And I xal spede the betyr and have more gras, 

In what place that evyr I be ; 

On knes to 30W I falle. 
I pray 30W, fadyr, and modyr dere, 
To blysse 30ur owyn dere dowtere, 
And pray ffor me in allemanere, 
And I ffor 30W alle. 
Joachym, Almyghty God, he mote the blysse, 

And my blyssynge thou have also ; 
In alle goodnesse ged the wysse, 

On londe or on watyr, wherevyr thou go. 
Anna. Now God the kepe from every mysse, 



lOa COVENTRY HYSTERIEIS. 

And save the sownd in weltbe from wo I 
I pray the^ dowtyr, thou onys me kys^ 

Or that thi modyr part the firo. 
I pray to God the save. 
I pray the, Mary, my swete ehylde. 
Be lowe and buxhum, meke and mylde. 
Sad and sobyr and nothyng wylde. 

And Goddyg blyasynge thou have» 
Joachym. fforwel, Josephe^ and God 30W spede, 

Wher 80 ye be in halle or boure. 
Joneph. Ahnyghty Grod, ^our weys lade. 

And save ^ow sownd from alle doloure* 
Anna. Goddys grace on 50W sprede^ 

ffarewel, Mary, my swete fflowre, 
ffiureweyl, Joseph, and Grod 30W rede, 

fiareweyl my chylde and my tresowre, 
ffarewel, my dowtere 3yng» 
Maria, ffarewel, fadyr and modyr dere. 
At 50W I take my leve rjrght here, 
Grod that sytt in hevyn so clere. 

Have 30W in his kepyng. 
JoBeph. Wyf, it is ful necessary this 30 knowe. 

That I and my kynrede go horn before, 
For in sothe we have non hous of oure owe> 

Therfore I xal gon ordeyn and thanne come 30W fore. 
We ar not ryche of werdly thynge. 

And 3et of our sustenauns we xal not mys, 
Therfore abydyth here stylle to 30ur plesynge. 

To worchep 30ur God is alle 30ur Uysse. 

He that is and evyr xal be 

Of hefne and belle ryche kynge. 
In erth hath chosyn poverty 

And alle ryches and welthis refusynge. 
Maria. Goth, husbond, in oure lordys blyssynge. 

He mote |ow spede in alle 30ur nede, 



MARY'S BETROTHMENT. 103 

And I xal here abyde 30ur a36n comynge, 

And on my sawtere-book I xal rede. 
Now blyssyd be oure Lord ffor this, 

Of hefne and erthe and aUe that bery th lyff, 
I am most bound to y>w. Lord, i-wys, 

fibr now I am bothe mayde and wyff. 

Now, Lord God, dysspose me to prayour. 

That I may sey the holy psalmes of Davyth, 
Wheche book is clepyd the Sawtere, 

That I m^ preyse the, my Qod, therwith. 
Of the vertujrs therof this is the pygth, 

It makyht sowles fayr, that doth it say, 
Angelys besteryd to help us therwith. 

It lytenyth therkenesse and puttyth develys away. 

The song of Psalmus is Goddys dete, 

Synne is put awey therby } 
It lemyth a man vertuys fal to be. 

It feryth mannys herte gostly. 
Who that it usyth customably. 

It claryfieth the herte, and charyt^ makyth cowthe. 
He may not ffaylen of Goddys mercy. 

That hath the preysenge of God evyr in his mowthe. 

holy Psalmys ! O holy book ! 
Swetter to say than any ony ! 

Thou lemyst hem, love Lord, that on the look. 
And makyst hym desyre thyngys celestly. 

With these halwyd psalmys, Lord, I pray the specyaly, 
ffor alle the creatures qwyke and dede. 

That thou wylt shewe to hem thi mercy. 
And to me specyaly that do it rede. 

1 have seyd sum of my sawtere, and here I am 

At this holy psalme in dede. 



104 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

'^ Benedixisti, Domine, terrain tuam/' 

In this holy labore. Lord, me spede. 
Joseph. Mary, wyff and mayd most gracyous, 

Displese ^ow not, I pray >ow, so long I have be. 
I have hyryd for us a lytyl praty hous. 

And ther in ryght hesely levyn wole we. 
Come forthe, Mary, and folwe me. 

To Na3areth now wele we go. 
And alle the maydonys, bothe ffayr and fre, 

Vl^th my wyflfcomyth forth e also. 
Now lystenyth welle, wyff, what I telle th^ 

I must gon owth hens fer the fro, 
I wylle go laboryn in fere country, 

With trewthe to maynteyn oure housholde so. 

This ix. monthis thou seyst me nowth 
Kepe the clene, my jentyl spowse, 
And alle thin maydenys in thin howse. 
That evyl langage I here not rowse, 

ffor hese love that alle hath wrought. 
Maria. I pray to God he spede >our way. 

And in sowle helthe he mote 30W kepe, 
And sende jow helthe, bothe nyth and day. 

He shylde and save 30W from al shenschepe. 
Now, Lord of grace, to the I pray, 

With morny mood on kne I krepe, 
Me save from synne, from tene and tray. 

With hert I murne, with eye I wepe. 
Lord God of pet^, 
Whan I sytt in my conclave, 
Alle myn hert on the I have, 
Gracyous God, my maydenhed save, 
Evyr clene in chastytd. 



XL THE SALUTATION AND 
CONCEPTION. 



Coniemplacio. ffowre thowsand sex undryd foure 3ere I 
telle, 

Man ffor his oflFens and ffowle foly. 
Hath lojrn }ere8 in the peynes of helle, 

And were wurthy to ly therin endlesly. 
But thanne xulde perysche 30ur grete mercy, 

Grood Lord, have on man pyt^. 
Have mende of the prayow seyd by Ysaie, 

Liete mercy meke thin hyest magest^. 

Wolde God thou woldyst breke thin hefne myghtye. 

And com down here into erthe ; 
And levyn 3ere8 thre and threttye, 

Thyn famyt ffolke with thi ffode to fede. 
To staunche thi thryste lete thi syde blede, 

ffor erst wole not be mad redempcion. 
Cum vysite us in this tyme of nede. 

Of thi careful creatures, Lord, have compassyon ! 

A ! woo to us wrecchis that wrecchis be, 

ffor Crod hath addyd ssorowe to sorwe ; 
I prey the, Lorde, thi sowlys com se, 

How thei ly and sobbe, bothe eve and morewe. 
With thi blyssyd blood ffrom babys hem boiwe. 

Thy careful creaturys cryenge in captyvyt^, 
A ! tary not, gracyous Lord, tyl it be to-morwe. 

The devyl hath dysceyved hem be his iniquity. 



106 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

A 1 quod Jeremye, who xal gyflF wellys to myn eynes, 

That I may wepe botbe day and nyght ? 
To se oure bretheryn in so longe peynes, 

Here myschevys amende may thi meche myght. 
As grett as the se. Lord, was Adamys contryssyon ryght, 

ffrom oure hed is ffalle the crowne, 
Man is comeryd in syune^ I crye to thi syght, 

Gracyous Lord ! Gracyous Lord ! Gracyous Lord, come 
downe! 

Virtutes. Lord ! plesyth it thin hi} domynacioii. 

On man that thou made to have pyt^, 
Patryarchys and prophetys han mad supplycacion, 

Oure ofl^se is to pfesente here prayeree to the. 
Aungelys, archaungelys, we thre 

That ben in the fyrst ierarchie, 
ffor man to thin hy magest^, 

Mercy I mercy ! mercy ! we crye. 

The aungel. Lord, thou made so gloryous, 

Whos synne hath mad bym a devyl in belle. 
He mevyd man to be so contraryous, 

Man repentyd, and be in his obstynacye doth dwelle. 
Hese grete males, good Lord, repelle. 

And take man onto thi grace, 
Lete thi mercy, make bym with aungelys dwelle. 

Of Locyfere to restore the place. 

Pater. Propter miseriam inopum, et gemitum pauperum 

nunc exurgam. 
ffor the wretchydnes of the nedy. 

And the porys lamentacion. 
Now xal I ryse that am Almyghty, 

Tyme is come of reconsyliacion. 
My prophe^ with prayers have made supplicacion, 

My contryte creaturys crye alle for comforte. 



THE SALUTATION AND CONCEPTION. 



AUe mya auogellya in hefne, withowte 

They crye that grace to man myght exorte. 



Veritas. Lord, I am thi dowtere, Trewtlie, 

Thou wilt se I be not lore, 
Thyn unkynJe creatures to save were rewtbe, 

The offens of man bath grevyd tiie Botv. 
Whan Adam had synnyd, thou seydest yore. 

That he xulde deye and go to helle, 
And now to blyase hym to restore, 

Twey contraryes mow not togedyr dwelle. 

Thy trewthe. Lord, xal leste withowtyo ende, 

I may in no wyse ffro the go. 
That wrecche that was to the so mikende, 

He may not have to meche wo. 
He dyspysyd tlie and pleayd thi fib. 

Thou art liis creatour and he is thi creature, 
Thou hast lovyd trewthe, it is aeyd evyr mo, 

Therfore in pejnea lete hym evynnore endure.. 

Mitericordia, O ffadyr of mercye and God of coroforte. 

That counselle us in eche trybulacion, 
Lete 30ur dowtere Mercy to jow reaorte. 

And on man that is royschevyd have compaasyon. 
Hym grevyth fful gretly his transgress yon, 

Alle hefne and erthe crye ffor mercy. 
Me semyth ther xuld be non excepcion, 

Ther prayers ben offeryd so specyally. 



Threwthe sseyth she hath evyr be than, 

I graunt it wel she hath be so, 
And thou seyst endlesly that mercy thou bast keptfibr man. 

Than raercyabyl lorde, kepe us bothe to. 



108 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Thu seyst Veritas mea et misericordia mea cum yMO, 
Sufiyr not thi sowlys than in sorwe to slepe, 

That helle hownde that hatyth the byddyth hym ho, 
Thi love man no lengere lete hym kepe. 

Justida. Mercy, me mervelyth what >ow movyth, 

36 know wel T am ^our syster Ryghtwypnes, 
Grod is ryghtfiiil and ryghtffulnes lovyih, 

Man offendyd hym that is endles, 
Therfore his endles punchement may nevyr sees ; 

Also he forsoke his makere that made hym of clay. 
And the devyl to his mayster he ches, 

Xulde he be savyd ? nay ! nay ! nay 1 

As wyse as is God he wolde a be. 

This was the abhomynabyl presumpcion. 
It is seyd, 3e know wel this of me. 

That the ryghtwysnes of God hath no di£Fynicion. 
Therffore late this be oure conclusyon, 

He that sore synnyd ly stylle in sorwe, 
He may nevyr make a seyth be resone, 

Whoo myght tlianne thens hym borwe. 

Misericordia. Syster Ryghtwysnes, ^e are to vengeabyl, 

Endles synne God endles may restore. 
Above alle hese werkys, God is mercyabyl, 

Thow he forsook God be synne, be feyth he forsook hym 
never the more. 
And thow he presumyd nevyr so sore, 

3e must consyder the frelnes of mankende, 
Leme and 3e lyst, this is Goddys lore. 

The mercy of God is withowtyn ende. 

Pax. To spare 30ur speches, systeres, it syt, 
It is not onest in vertuys to ben djrscencion. 



THE SALUTATION AND CONCEPTION. 109 

The pes of God ovyroomyth alle wytt, 
Thou Trewthe and Ryght sey grett reaon. 

3ett Mercy seyth best to my pleson, 

ffor yf mannys sowle xulde abyde in helle, 

Betwen God and man evyr xulde be dy vysyon, 
And than royght not I Pes dwelle. 

Therefore me semyth best 3e thus aeorde. 

Than hefhe and erthe 3e xul qweme. 
Putt bothe 30ur sentens in oure Liorde, 

And in his hy3 wysdam lete hym deme. 
This is most fyttynge me xulde seme. 

And lete se how we fibwre may alle abyde, 
That mannys sowle it xulde perysche it wore sweme. 

Or that ony of us ffro othere xulde dyyyde, 

Veritas, In trowthe hereto I consente, 

I wole prey oure lorde it may so be. 
Justicia. I Ryghtwysnes am wele contente, 

ffor in hym is very equyte. 
Misericordia. And I Mercy ffro this counsel wole not fie, 

Tyl wysdam hath seyd I xal ses. 
Pax, Here is God now, here is unyt^, 

Hefne and erthe is plesyd with pes. 

JUius, I thynke the thoughtys of Pes and nowth of 
wykkydnes, 

This I deme to ses 30ur contraversy. 
If Adam had not deyd, peryschyd had Ryghtwysnes, 

And also Trewthe had be lost therby. 
Trewth and Ryght wolde chastyse ffoly, 

3iff another deth come not, Mercy xulde perysche. 
Than Pes were exyled ffynyaly, 

So tweyn dethis must be 30W fowre to cherysche. 



110 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

But he that xal deye je must koawe, 

That in hym may ben uon iniquyte, 
That helle may holde hym be no lawe, 

But that he may pas at hese lyberte. 
Qwere swyche on his prevyde and se, 

And hese deth for mannys dethe xal be redempciou, 
AUe hefne and erthe seke now 36, 

Ples^th it 30W this concltuyon. 

Veritas. I, Trowthe, have sowte the erthe withowt and 
within ne, 

And in sothe ther kan non be fownde, 
That is of o day byrth withowte synne, 

Nor to that dethe wole be bownde. 
Muericordia, I, Meroy, have ronne the hevynly regyon 
rownde. 

And ther is non of that charyt^, 
That Sbr man wole suffre a deddty wounde, 

I cannott wete how this xal be. 

Juslicia. Sure I can fynde non suffiuyent, 

ffor servauntys unprofytable we be eche one, 
Hes !ove nedyth to be ful ardent, 

That for man to helle wolde gon. 
Pojr. That God may do is non but on, 

Therfore this is be hys avyae, 
He that jaffthia couneelle lete hym jeve the comforte alon, 

fTor the conclusyon in hym of alle these lyse. 

ffilius. It peyneth me that man I mad. 
That is to seyn peyne I must suffre aore, 

A coun«l of the Trinity must be had, 
Whiche of us xal man restore. 

Pater. In sour wysdam, son, man was mad thore. 
And in wysdam was his Icmptaciun, 



THE SALDTATION AlfD CONCBPTION. Ill 

Tbgrtot^ tone, nKffyeos je most ofdeya hncfbfe. 
And 86 how of man may be salvatioo. 

Jtfiitf. flBuiyr, he that xal do this most bebotheGod and man, 

Lete me se how I may were that wede. 
And sythe in my wysdam he b^gan^ 

I am ledy to do this dede. 
Spbrilmi SmteimB. I the HolyGostof )ow tweyndo proeede. 

This charge I wole take on me, 
I love to yaor kvver xal 50W lede, 

This is the assent of oure unyt^. 

MuericmrAa. Now is the loreday mad of us fowre fynialy , 
Now may we leve in pes as we were wonte : 

Misericordia et Veritas obviaverunt sibi, 
Justicia et Pax oscnlats smit. 

Et hie osculabtmi pariier omnes. 

Paier. firom us, God, aungel Gabryel, thou xalte be sende, 

Into the country of Galyle, 
llie name of the cyt^ Na5areth is kende, 

To a mayd, weddyd to a man is she. 
Of whom the name is Joseph se. 

Of the hous of Davyd bore, 
The name of the mayd ffre. 

Is Mary that xal al restore. 

ffiUus. Say that she is withowte wo and fill of grace, 

And that I the son of the Godhed of here xal be bore. 
Hy3e the thou were tliere apace, 

Ellys we xal be there the before. 
I have so grett hast to be man thore. 

In that mekest and purest virgyne, 
Sey here she xal restore. 

Of 30W aungellys the grett ruyne. 



113 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Spiritus Sanctus. And if she aske the how it myth be. 

Telle her I the Holy Gost xal werke al this, 
Sche xal be savyd thorwe oure unyt^^ 

In tokyn here bareyn cosyn Elyjabeth is 
Qwyk with childe, in here grett age i-wys ; 

Sey here to us is nothynge impossyble. 
Her body xal be so ful fylt with blys, 

That she xal sone thynke this sownde credyble. 

OahrieL In thyn hey inbasset. Lord, I xal go. 

It xal be do with a thought, 
Beholde now. Lord, I go here to, 

I take my flyth and byde nowth. 

Ave Maria gratia plena, Dominus tecum ! 

Heyl, fful of grace, Grod is with the, 

Amonge alle women blyssyd art thu ; 
Here this name Eva is tumyd Ave, 

That is to say witliowte sorwe ar ^e now. 

Thow sorwe in 30W hath no place, 

3ett of joy, lady, ^e nede more, 
Therfore I adde and sey " flFul of grace,** 

ffor so ful of grace was nevyr non bore. 
3ett who hath grace, he nedyth kepyng sore, 

Therfore I sey ** God is with the," 
Whiche xal kepe 30W endlesly thore. 

So amonge alle women blyssyd are 36. 

Maria, A ! mercy God, this is a mervelyous herynge ; 

In the aungelys wordys I am trobelyd her, 
I think how may be this gretynge, 

Aungelys dayly to me doth aper. 
But not in the lyknes of man that is my fer. 

And also thus hy3ly to comendyd be. 



THE SALUTATION AND CONCEPTION. IIS 

And am moet unwirthy, I cannot answere, 
Grett shamfastnes and grett dred is in me. 

GabryeL Mary, in this take 36 no drede, 

ffor at God grace ffbwnde have 36, 
3e xal conceyye in 30ur wombe indede 

A childe, the sone of the Trynyt^. 
His name of 30W Jheso clepyd xal be, 

He xall be grett, the son of the hyest clepyd of kende. 
And of his fiadyr, Davyd, the Lord xal 3eye hym the se, 

Beynyng in the hous of Jacob, of whiche regno xal be 
non ende. 

Maria. Aungel, I sey to 30W, 

In what manere of wyse xal this be ? 
ffor knowyng of man I have non now, 

I have evyrmore kept and xal my virginyt^. 
I dowte not the wordys 3e han seyd to me. 

But I aske it xal be do. 
GabryeL The Holy Gost xal come fro above to the. 

And the vertu of hym hyest xal schadu the so. 

Therfore that Holy Gost of the xal be bore. 

He xal be clepyd the sou of God sage ; 
And se Ely3abeth 30ur cosyn there. 

She hath consey vid a son in hyre age ; 
This is the sexte monyth of here passage. 

Of here that clepyd was bareyn : — 
Nothynge is impossyble to Goddys usage. 

They thynkyth longe to here what 3e wyl seyn. 

Here the aungel makyth a lytyl restynge, and Mary 
beholdyth kym^ and the Aungel seythe, 

Mary, come of, and haste the, 
And take hede in thyn entent. 



114 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Whow the Holy gost, blyssyd he be I 
Abydyth thin answere and thin assent ; 

Thorwe wyse werke of dy vinyt^, 
The secunde persone verament 

Is mad man by fraterayt^, 

Withinne thiself in place present. 

fferthermore take hede this space, 

Whow alle the blyssyd spyrytys of verto. 
That are in hefne by£Fore Goddys fieu^e. 

And alle the gode levers and trew 
That are here in this erthely place, 

Thyn owyn kynrede, the sothe ho knew. 
And the chosyn sowlys, this tjrme of grace. 

That are in helle, and byde ther rescu. 

As Adam, Abraham, and Davyd in fere. 

And many othere of good reputacion, 
That thin answer desyre to here, 

And thin assent to the Incamacion, 
In whiche thou standyst as persevere. 

Of alle mankende savacion ; 
Gyff me myn answere now, lady dere. 

To alle these creatures comfortacion 

Maria. With alle mekenes I clyne to this aoorde, 

Bowynge down my face with alle benyngnyt^ ; 
Se here the hand-mayden of oure Lorde, 

Aftyr thi worde be it don to me. 
Gabryel. Gramerey, my lady ffire, 

Gramercy of 3our answere on hyght, 
Gramerey of 30ur grett humylyte, 

Gramercy, 39 lanterne of lyght. 

Here the Holy Gost discendit with ty . bemys to our 
Lady 9 the sone of the Godhed vest with iij, bemys to the 



THE SALUTATION AND CONCEPTION. Ill; 

HolgGoii, ike /m*pr CMfy wUM ig. 6emf9 /o Me jone, 
4md w emire aUe ikte io ker iomMm, amd Mmf $efik, 

Maria. A ! now I tteim in my body be 

P&rfyte Gkxl and purfyte man, 
Havyng alle schappe of chyldly canialyMi 

Evyn al at onys thus God began. 

Nott takynge fiyrst o membyr and sythe another, 

But parfyte childhod 36 have anon ; 
Of 30ur handmayden now ye ha^e mad 3oar modyr, 

^thowte peyne in fflescbe and bon. 
Thus conoeyved nevyr woman non, 

That evyr was beynge in this lyff ; 
Of myn hyest ffodjr, in 3our trone. 

It is worthy 30ur son, now my son, have a prerogatyff. 

I cannot telle what joy, what blysse. 

Now I fele in my body f 
Aungel Gabryel, I thank 30W for tbys. 

Most mekely recoroende me to my faderes mercy. 
To have be the modyr of God fful lytyl wend I,— 

Now myn cosyn Ely3abeth ffayn wold I se. 
How sche hath conseyvid as 36 dede specyfy, 

Now blyssyd be the hy3 Trynyt^. 

Gabryel. (IREureweyl, turtyl, Goddys dowtere dere, 

fifarewel, Goddys modyr, I the honowre, 
ffarewel, Goddys sustyr, and his pleynge fere, 

ffarewel, Goddys chawmere and his bowre. 
Maria, ffarewel, Gabryel, specyalye, 

ffarewel, Goddys masangere expresse, 
I thank 30W for 3 our traveyl hye, 

Gramercy of 30ur grett goodnes. 

i2 



116 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And namely of 30ur comfortabyl massage, 

ffor I undjrrstande by inspyracion. 
That 3e knowe by syngulere prevylage. 

Most of my sonys incarnacion. 
I pray 30W take it into usage. 

Be a custom ocupacion. 
To vesyte me ofte be mene passage, — 

30ur presence is my comfortacion. 

Gabriel. At 30ur wyl, lady, so xal it be, 
30 gentyllest of blood and hyest of kynrede. 

That reynyth in erthe in ony degrd, 
Be pryncypal incheson of the Godhede. 

I comende me onto 30W, thou trone of tlie Trinytd, 

O mekest mayde, now the modyr of Jhesu ; 
Qwen of hefne, lady of erthe, and empres of helle be 3e, 

Socour to alle sjrnful that wole to 30W sew. 
Thoro 30ur body beryth the babe oure blysse xal renew. 

To 30W, modyr of mercy, most mekely I recomende ; 
And as I began, I ende with an Ave new, 

Enjonyd hefne and erthe with that I ascende. 

AngeJi cantando istam sequenciam : — 

Ave Maria gratia plena 1 
Dominus tecum, virgo serena ! 



XII. JOSEPH'S RETURN. 



Joseph. How, dame, how ! undo ^oure dore^ undo ! 

Are 36 at hom ? why speke 30 notht ? 
Susanna, Who is ther ? why cry 50 so? 

Telle us 30ur herand. Wyl 3e ought? 
Joseph, Undo 30ur dore, I sey 30W to, 

ffor to com in is alle my thought. 
Maria. It is my spowse that spekyth us to ; 

Ondo the dore, his wyl were wrought. 
Wellecome hom, myn husbond dere, 

How have 3e ferd in fer countrd ? 
Joseph. To gete oure levynge withowtyn dwere, 

I have sore laboryd fibr the and me. 
Maria. Husbond, ryght gracyously now come be 36, 

It solacyth me sore sothly to se 30W in syth. 
Joseph. Me merveylyth, wyfF, surely 3our face I cannot se. 

But as the sonne with his bemys qwhan he is most bryth. 
Maria. Husbond, it is as it plesyth oure Lord, that grace 
of hym grew. 

Who that evyr beholdyth me veryly, 
They xall be grettly steryd to vertu, 

fiFor this 3yfte and many moo, good Lord, gramercy. 
Joseph. How hast thou ferde, jentyl mayde, 

Whyl I have be out of londe ? 
Maria. Sekyr, sere, beth nowth dysmayde, 

Ryth aftyr.the wyl of Goddys sonde. 
Joseph. That semyth evyl, I am afrayd, 

Thi wombe to hy3e doth stonde. 



118 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

I dred me sore I am betrayd. 

Sum other man the had in honde, 

Hens sythe that I went. 
Thy wombe is gret, it gynnyth to ryse, 
Than hast thou begownne a synfulle gyse^ 
Telle me now in what wyse. 

Thyself thou hast thus schent. 

Ow ! dame, what thinge menyth this ? 

With childe thou gynnyst ryth gret to gone. 
Sey me, Mary^ this childys fisulyr ho is ? 

I pray the telle me, and that anon. 
Maria. The fadyr of hevyn and 30 it is. 

Other fadyr hath be non ; 
I dede nevjq' forfete with man i-wys ; 

Wherfore I pray 30W amende 30ur mon, — 
This childe is Goddys and 30ur. 
Joseph. Goddys childe ! thou lyist, in fay y 
God dede nevyr jape so with may. 
And I ccm nevyr ther, I dare wel say^ 

3itt so nyh thi boure. 
But 3it I sey, Mary, whoos childe is this ? 
Maria. Groddys and 30ure, I sey i-wys. 
Joseph, 3a ! 3a ! alle olde men to roe take tent^ 

And weddyth no wyff in no kynnys wyse. 
That is a 3onge wenche, be mjn asent, 

ffor doute and drede and swyche servyse. 
Alas ! alas ! my name is shent I 

Alle men may me now dyspyse. 
And seyn, ^ olde cokwold, thi bowe is bent 

Newly now after the Frensche gyse.'* 
Alas and welaway ! 
Alas ! dame, why ded3rst thou so ? 
ffor this synne that thou hast do, 
I the forsake and from the go, 

ffor onys, evyr, and ay. 



JOSEPH'S RBTUBN. 119 

Alas ! gode spowae, why sey 30 thus ? 
Alas ! dere hosbund, amende 30ur mod. 
It is no man, but swete Jhesus, 
He wylle be clad in flesche and blood. 
And of 30ur wyff be born. 
Sephor, ffor sothe, the amigel, thus aejd he. 
That Groddys sone in Trynit^, 
ffor mannys sake a man wolde be. 
To save that i& forlorn. 

Joseph, An amigel 1 alias, alas ! fy for schame ! 

36 syn now in that 36 to say. 
To puttyn an aungel in so gret blame. 

Alas ! alas 1 let be, do way. 
It was sum boy began this game. 

That clothyd was clene and gay ; 
And 30 3eye hym now an aungele name, — 

Alas ! alas and welaway ! 

That evyr this game betydde. 
A ! dame, what thought haddyst thou ? 
Here may alle men this proverbe trow, 
That many a man doth bete the bow. 

Another man hath the brydde. 

Maria. A ! gracyous God, in hefne trone, 
Comforte my spowse in this hard cas j 

Mercyful God amend his mone, 
As I dede nevyr to gret trespas. 

Joseph. Lo ! lo ! seres, what told I 30W, 

That it was not for my prow, 

A wyff to take me to ; 

An that is wel sene now, 

ffor Mary I make god avow, 

Is grett with childe, io ! 



120 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Alas ! why is it so ? 

To the busshop I wole it telle. 
That he the lawe may here do. 

With stonys here to qwelle. 

Nay ! nay ! jet God fforbede. 
That I xuld do that vegeabyl dede. 
But if I wyst wel qwy. 
I knew never with here, so God me spede, 
Tokyn of thynge in word nor dede 
That towchyd velany. 
Nevyr-the-les what for-thy, 

Thow she be meke and mylde, 
Withowith mannys company 

She myght not be with childe. 

But I ensure myn was it nevyr ; 

Thow that she hath not done here devyr. 

Rather than I xuld pleynyn opynly, 
Serteynly jitt had I levyr 
fforsake the countr^ ffor evyr, 

And nevyr come in here company, 
ffor and men knew this velany, 

In repreff thei wolde me holde. 
And yeU many bettyr than I, 

3a, hath ben made cokolde. 

Now, alas ! whedyr xal I goune ? 

I wot nevyr whedyr nor to what place ; 
ffor oftyn tyme sorwe comyth sone, 

And lenge it is or it pace, — 

No comforte may I have here. 
I-wys wyff thou dedyst me wronge ; 
Alas ! I traryed from the to longe, 



JOSKPH'S RETURN. 1?1 

AUe men have pety on me amonge, 

ffor to my sorwe is no chere. 

Maria. God, that in my body art sesyd. 
Thou knowist myn husbond is dysplesyd, 

To se me in this plight, 
ffor unknowlage he is desesyd. 
And therefore help that he were esyd, 

That he myght knowe the ful perfyght. 
ffor I have levyr abyde respyt, 

To kepe thi sone in privity, 
Gramityd by the Holy Spyryt, 

Than that it xulde be opynd by me. 
Deu9. Descende, I sey, myn aungelle. 
Onto Joseph, for to telle 

Suche as my wyl is ; 
Byd hym with Mary abyde and dwelle, 
ffor it my sone fful snelle 

That she is with i-wys. 
Angelas, Almyghty God of blys, 

I am redy ffor to wende 
Wedyr as thi wyl is, 

To go bothe fer and hynde. 
Joseph, Joseph ; thou wepyst shryle, 

ffro thi wyff why comyst thou owte ? 
Joseph, Good sere, lete me wepe my ffylle, 

Go forthe thi wey and lett me nowght. 
Angelus. In thi wepynge, thou dost ryght ylle, 

A3ens God thou hast myswrought ; 
Go chere thi wyff with herty wylle, 

And chawnge thi chere, amende thi thought. 
Sche is a ful clene may. 
I telle the, God wyl of here be born. 
And sche clene mayd as she was beforn, 
To ^ve mankynd tliat is forlorn, 

Go chere hyre therfore, I say. 



1S2 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Joseph. A ! lord God^ benedicite ! 
Of thi gret comforte I thank the^ 

That thou sent me this space. 
I myght wel a wyst par-d^, 
So good a creature as she 

Wold nevyr a donne trespace. 
For sche is ful of Grace ; 

I know wel I have myswrought, 
I walk to my pore place, — 

I aske fforgyfhes, I have mysthought. 

Now is the tyme sen at eye. 
That the childe is now to veryfye, 

Whiche xal save mankende. 
As it was spoke be prophesye ; 
I thank the, God, that syttys on hye, 

W^th hert, wyl, and mende. 
That evyr thou woldyst me bynde 

To wedde Mary to my wyff, 
Thi blysfiil sone so nere to fynde. 

In his presens to lede my lyff. 

Alas 1 ffor joy I qwedyr and qwake ; 

Alas 1 what hap now was this ? 
A mercy, mercy, my jentyl make, — 

Mercy 1 I have aeyd al amys } 
Alle that I have seyd here I forsake : 

30ur swete fete now lete me kyt. 
Mary. Nay, lett be my fete, not tfao 30 take. 

My mowthe 30 may kys i-wys. 
And welcome onto me. 
Joseph. Gramercy, myn owyn swete wyff, 
Gramercy, myn hert, my love, my lyff, 
Xal I nevyr more make such stryf 
Betwix me and the. 



JOSEPH'S RETURN. 123 

A ! Mary, Mary, wel thou be. 
And blyssyd be the frewte in the, 

Groddys sone of myght ! 
Now good wyfF, fful of pyt^. 
As be not evyl payd with me, 

Thow that thou have good ryght. 
As for my wronge in syght. 

To wyte the with ony synne. 
Had thou not be a vertuous wythe, 

God wold not a be the withinne. 

I knowlage I have don amys, 
I was never wurthy i-wys 

ffor to be thin husbonde ; 
I xal amende aftere thys, 
Ryght as thin owyn wyl is. 

To serve the at foot and honde. 
And thi chylde bothe to undyrstonde. 

To wurchep hym with good affeccion ; 
And therfore telle me, and nothinge whonde. 

The holy matere of >our concepcion. 
Maria. At 30wre owyn wylle, as 3e bydde me; 

Ther came an aunge hyght Grabryelle, 
And gret me ffayr and seyd Ave, 

And ferther more to me gan telle 
God xulde be borne of my bod^. 

The ffendys powst^ ffor to ffelle^ 
Thorwe the Holy Gost, as I wel se. 

Thus God in me wyl byde and dweUe. 
Joseph. Now I thank God with speche and spelle^ 

That evyr, Mary, I was weddyd to the. 
Mary. It was the werk of God, as I 30W telle, 

Now blyssyd be that Lord so purveyd for me. 



XIII. THE VISIT TO ELIZABETH. 



Maria* Butt, husbond, of oo thynge I pray 30W most mekely, 

I have knowy ng that oure cosyn Ely3abeth with childe is ; 
That it plese 30W to go to here hastyly, 

If owught we myth comforte here, it were to me blys. 
Joseph. A ! Godys sake is she with childe, sche ? 

Than wole here husbond 3akarye be mery. 
In Montana they dwelle fer hens, so mot y the. 

In the cety of Juda, I knowe it veryly ; 
It is hens, I trowe, myles two and ffyfty, 

We are like to be wery or we come at that same ; 
I wole with a good wyl, blyssyd wyff Mary, — 

Now go we forthe than in Goddys name. 
Maria. Goth husbond, thow it be to 30W peyne. 

This jurny I pray 30W lete us go fast, 
ffor I am schamfast of the pepyl to be seyne. 

And namely of men, therof I am agast. 
Pylgrymages and helpynges wolde be go in hast. 

The more the body is peynyd, the more is the mede ; 
Say 3e 30ur devoclonys, and I xal myn reast (?), 

Now in this jurny God mote us spede ! 
Joseph. Amen ! Amen I and evyr more ; 
LfO ! wyff, lo I how starkly I go before. 

Et sic transient circa placeam, 
Contemplado. Sovereynes,undyr8tondyth that kynge Davyd here 

Ordeyned ffoure and twenty prestys of grett devocion, 
In the temple of God ailer here let apere, 

Thei weryd clepyd sutnmi sacerdotes ffor her mynistracion. 



THE VISIT TO ELIZABETH. 125 

And on was prynce of prestys havynge domynacyon, 
Amonge whiche was an old prest clepyd 3akarye, 

And he had an old woman to his wyff of holy converaacion, 
Whiche hyth Eli3abeth, that nevyr had childe verylye. 

In hese mynistracion the howre of incense. 

The aungel Gabryel apperyd hym to. 
That hese wyff xulde conseyve he 3aff hym intelligence, 

Hes jnge, hes unwurthynes, and age not belevyd so. 

The plage of dompnesse his lippis lappyd, lo ! 

Thei wenten hom and his wyff was conseyvenge ; 
This concepcion Gabryel tolde oure lady to, 

And in soth sone aftere that sage sche was sekynge. 
And of her tweyners metyng 

Here gynnjrth the proces, 
Now God be oure begynnynge, 

And of my tonge I wole ses. 

Joseph. A ! A ! wyff, in feyth I am wery, 

Therfore I wole sytt downe and rest me ryght here. 
Lo ! wyff, here is the house of 3akary, 

Wole 3e I clepe Ely3abeth to 30W to apere. 
Maria, Nay, husbond, and it plese 30W I xal go ner. 

Now the blyssyd Trynit^ be in this hous ! 
A! cosyn Eli3abeth, swete modyr, what cher? 

36 grow grett, a ! my God ! how 3e be gracyous. 
EU'^ abet he. Anon as I herd of 30W this holy gretynge, 

Mekest raayden and the modyr of God, Mary, 
Be 30ur breth the Holy Gost us was inspyrynge, 

That the childe in my body enjoyd gretly, 
And tumyd downe on his knes to oure Gx)d reverently. 

Whom 3e here in your body this veryly I ken, 
ffulfyllyd with the Holy Gost thus lowde Icry, 

Blyssyd be thou amonge alle women. 



126 COVENTRT MTSTERIE8. 

And blyssyd be the frute of thi wombe also. 

Thou wurthyest virgyne and wyff that ever was wrougiit ! 
How is it that the modyr of Grod me xulde come to ? 

That wrecche of alle wrecchis, a whyght wers than nought ! 
And thou art blyssyd, that belevyd veryly in thi thought. 

That the wurde of God xulde profyte in the. 
But how this blyssydnes abought was brought, 

I cannot thynk nyn say how it myght be. 
Maria. To the preysyng of Grod, cosyn, tiiis seyd mut be. 

Whan I sat in my lytyl hous onto God praynge, 
Gabryel come and seyde to me, Ave 1 

Ther I conceyyed God at my consentynge, 
Parfyte God and parfy te man at onys beynge i 

Than the aungel seyd onto me, 
That it was sex monethys syn 30ur consejrvynge, 

This cawsyth my comynge, cosyn, 30W to comfort and se. 
Elizabeth. Blyssyd be 3e, cosyn, ffor 30ur hedyr oomynge. 

How I conseyvyd I xal to 30W say ; 
The aungel apperyd the howre of incensynge, 

Seynge I xulde conseyve, and hym thought nay. 
Sethe ffor his mystrost he hath be dowme alway, 

And thus of my concepcion I have 30W sum. 
Maria, ffor this holy psalme I begynne here this day. 

Magnificat anima mea Dominum, 
Et exultavit spiritus mens in Deo salutari meo. 
EU^abeth. Be the Holy Gost with joye Goddys son is in die cum. 
That thi spyryte so injonyid the helth of thi God so. 
Maria. Quia respexit humUitatem ancills sus, 

Ecce enim ex hoc beatam me dicent omnes generatioDes. 
Elizabeth, ffor he beheld the lownes of hese hand mayde3e, 
. So ferforthe ffor that alle generacionys blysse 30W in pes. 
Maria. Quia fecit mihi magna qui potens est, 

Et sanctum nomen ejus. 
Elizabeth, ffor grett thynges he made and also myghtyest; 

And ryght holy is the name of hjrm in us. 



THB VISIT TO ELIZABETH. 1S7 

Maria. Et miserioordia ejus a progenie in progenies, 

Timentibus eum. 
EUyabeth, 3a, the mercy of hym fro that kynde into the ky nde 
of pes, 

ffor alle that hym drede now is he cnm. 
Maria. Fecit potenciam in brachio sno, 

Disspersit superbos mente cordis sui. 
Elizabeth. The pore in his ryght arme he hath mad so. 
The prowde to dyspeyre and the thought of here hertys only. 
Maria. Deposoit potentes de sede, 

Et exaltavit humiles. 
Eh^abeth. The prowde men fix> hey setp put he. 

And the bwly upon heyth in the sete of pes. 
Maria. Esurientes implevit bonis, 

Et divites dimisit inanes. 
Elizabeth. Alle the pore and the nedy he fulfyllyth with 
his goodys, 

And the ryche he fellyth to voydnes. 
Maria. Suscepit Israel puerum suum, 

Recordatus est misericordiae suae. 
Elizabeth. Israel for his childe up toke he to cum. 

On his mercy to thynk fibr hese that be. 
Maria. Sicut locutus est ad patres nostros, 

Abraham et semini ejus in secula. 
EU^abeth. As he spak here to oure forfaderys in clos, 

Abraham and to alle hese sede of hym in this werd sa« 
Maria. Gloria Patri et Filio 
Et Spiritui Sancto. 

Elizabeth. Presyng be to the Fadyr in hevyn lo ! 
The same to the Son here be so, 

The Holy Gost also to ken ! 
Maria. Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper, 

Et in secula seculorum I Amen. 
Elizabeth. As it was in the begynnynge and now is and xal 
be for evyr. 

And in this werd in alle good werkys to abydyn then. 



128 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Maria. This psalme of proyhesye seyd betwen us tweyn. 

In hefne it is wretyn with aungellys hond, 
Evyr to be songe and also to be seyn, 

Every day amonge us at oure evesong. 
But, cosyn Ely3abeth, I xal 30W here kepe. 

And this thre monethis abide here now, 
Tyl 3e han childe, to wasche, skore, and swepe. 

And in alle that I may to comforte 30W. 
Elizabeth. A ! 3e modyr of God, 3e shewe us here how 

We xulde be meke that wrecchis here be ; 
Alle hefhe and herthe wurchepp 30W mow, 

That are trone and tabemakyl of the hy3 Trinity. 
Josq}h, A ! how do 3e, how do 30, ffadyr 3acharye ? 

We ffitlle fibst in age withowte othe ; 
Why shake 3e so 30ur bed ? have 30 the palsye ? 

Why speke 30 not, sere ? I trowe 3e are not wroth. 
Elizabeth. Nay, wys fiadyr Joseph, therto he were ful loth. 

It is the vesytation of God he may not speke veryly ; 
Lete us thank God therffor bothe. 

He xal remedy it whan it plesyth his mercy. 
Come and pray 30W specialy ; 
I-wys 3e are welcome, Mary ; 

ffor this comfortabelest comynge, good God, gramercy 1 
Joseph. Of 30ur dissese thynkys no greff. 

Thank Grod of al adversyt^, 
ffor he wyl chastyse and repreff 

Tho that he lovyth most hertyl^. 
Mary, I hold best that we go hens. 

We have fer hom withowt fayl. 
Maria. Al redy husbond without defens, 

I wyl werke be 3 our counsayl. 
Cosyn, be 30ur leve and 30ur lycens. 

For homward now us must travayl. 
Of this refreschynge in 30ur presens, 

God 3eld 30W that most ma^ avayl. 



THB VISIT TO ELIZABETH. 129 

• 

Ek^abeth, Now^coeynes bothe, Gow 30W spede, 

And wete 30W wele withowtyn mo, 
3oar presens comfortyth me indede ; 

And therfore now am I ryght wo. 
That 3e, my ffrendys and my kynrede. 

Thus sone now xul parte me fro : 
But I pray God he mote 30W lede, 

In every place wher so 36 ga 

Here Mary and EUyibet partyn, and Elizabeth goih 
to ZakariCj and seythy 

Good husbond, ryse up, I beseke 30W, 

And go we to the temple now fast 
To wurchep God with that we mow. 

And thank hym bothe, this is my cast 
Of the tyme that is comynge now ; 

ffor now is cum mercy, and venjauns is past : 
Grod wyl be bom for mannys prow. 

To brynge us to biysse, that ever xal last. 

Coniemplacio. Lystenyth, sovereynys, here is a conclusyon. 

How the Ave was mad here is lernyd us ; 
The aungel seyd ^^ Ave, gratia plena, Dominus tecum, 

Benedicta tu in mulieribus/' 
Ely3abeth seyd, ** Et benedictus fructus ventris tui.** 

Thus the chirche addyd Maria and Jhesus her : 
Who seyth oure ladyes sawtere dayly for a 3er thus, 

He hath pardon ten thowsand and eyte hundryd 3er. 

Than ferther to oure matere to procede, 

Mary with Eli3abeth abod ther stylle 
iij. monthys fully, as we rede, 

Thankynge God with hertly wylle. 
A ! Lord God, what hous was this on ? 

That these childeryn and here moderes to, 

K 



130 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

« 

As Mary and Eli3abeth, Jhesus and John, 
And Joseph and Zakarye also. 

And evyr oure lady abod stylle thus, 

Tyl John was of his modjnr born. 
And than 3akarye spak i-wus. 

That had be dowm and his speche lorn. 
He and Eli3abeth prophesyed as thns. 

They mad Benedictus them beforn ; 
And so Magnificat^ and Benedicius, 

ffyrst in that place ther made worn. 

Whan alle was don, onre Lady fre 

Toke here leve ; than aftere this, 
At Eli3abeth and at 3akarie, 

And kyssyd John and gan hym blys. 

Now most mekely we thank 30W of 30ur pacyens, 

And beseke 30U of 30ur good supportacion. 
If here hathe be seyd or don any inconvenyens. 

We asygne it to 30ur good deliberacion ; 
Besekynge to Crystes precious passyon, 

Consenre and rewarde 30ur hedyr comynge 1 
With Ave we begunne, and Ave is oure conelasyon, 

Ave regma caskrum to oure Lady we synge. 



XIV. THE TRIAL OF JOSEPH AND 

MARY. 



Den. Avojd, seres, and kte my lorde the buschop come. 
And syt in the courte the lawes ffbr to doo ; 

And I xal gon in this place them for to somowne, 
Tho that ben in my book the court 3e must com too. 

I wame 30W here alle abowte. 

That I somown 30W alle the rowte, 

Loke 3e fayl, for no dowte. 

At the court to pere. 

Bothe John Jurdon, atid Geffrey Gyle, 

Malkyn Mylkedoke, and fayr Mabyle, 

Stevyn Sturdy, and Jak at the Style, 
And Sawdyr Sadelere. 

Thom Tynkere and Betrys Belle, 
Peyrs Potter and Whatt at the Welle, 
Symme Smalfeyth and Kate Kelle, 

And Bertylmew the Bochere. 
Kytt Cakelere and Colett Crane, 
Gylle Fetyse and fayr Jane, 
Powle Pewterere and Pemel Prane, 

And Phelypp the good Flecchere. 

Cok Crane and Davy Drydust, 
Luce Lyere and Letyce Lytyltrust, 
Miles the Myllere and CoUe Crakecrust, 

Bothe Bette the Bakere, and Bobyn Rede. 
And loke 36 ryngewele in 3 our purs, 
ffor ellys 30ur cawse may spede the wurs, 

k2 



182 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Thow that 36 slynge Goddys curs 

Evyn at myn hede, fiast com away. 

Bothe Boutyng the Browstere, and Sybyly Slynge, 

Megge Merywedyr and Sabyn Sprynge, 

TyflGeiny Twynkelere, fiayle flTor nothynge, 
The courte xal be this day. 

Hie imirabU pagentum depurgatione Marus et Joseph. 
Hie dieit primus detractor ^ 

A ! A ! serys, God save 30W alle. 

Here is a fayr pepyl in good flay ; 
Grood seres, telle me what men me calle, 

I trowe 3e kannot be this day ; 
3itt I walke wide and many way, 

But 3ot ther I come I do no good, 
To reyse slawdyr is al my lay, 

Bakbytere is my brother of blood. 

Dede he ought come hedyr in al this day, 

Now wolde God that he were here ! 
And be my trewthe, I dare wel say. 

That yf we tweyn togedyr apere, 
More slawndyr we to xal arere, 

^Within an howre thorweouth this town. 
Than evyr ther was this thowsand 3ere, 

And ellys I shrewe 30W bothe up and downe. 

Now be my trewthe I have a syght 

Evyn of my brother, lo ! where he is : 
Welcom, dere brother, my trowthe I plyght, 

30wre jentyl mowth let me now kys. 
Secundas detractor. Gramercy, brother, so have I blys, 

I am ful glad we met this day. 
Primus detractor. Ryght so am I, brothyr, i-wys, 

Meche gladder than I kan say. 



THE TRIAL OF JOSEPH AND MART. 1S3 

But }itt, good brother, I 30W pray^ 

Telle aile these pepyl what is 30ur name ; 
ffor yf thei knew it, my lyf I lay. 

They wole 30W wurehep and speke gret fame. 
SeeunduM detractor. I am Bakbytere, that spyllyth alle 
game, 

Bothe kyd and knowyn in many a place. 
Primus detractor. Be my trowth I seyd the same. 

And 3et sum seyden thou xulde have evyl grace. 
Secundu8 detractor. Herk, Beyse-sclaundyr, canst thou 
owth telle 

Of any newe thynge that wrought was late ? 
Primus detractor. Witliin a shorte whyle a thynge befelle, 

I trowe thou wylt lawh3 ryght wel therate, 
ffor be trowth, ryght mekyl hate. 

If it be wyst, tlierof wyl growe. 
Secundtis detractor. If I may reyse therwith debate, 

I xal not spare the seyd to sowe. 
Primus detractor. Syr, in the tempyl a mayd tlier was, 

Calde mayd Mary, the trewth to telle ; 
Sche semyd so holy withinne that plas. 

Men seyd sche was ffedde with holy aungelle. 
Sche made a vow with man nevyr to melle. 

But to leve chast and clene virgine ; 
How evyr it be her wombe doth swelle. 

And is as gret as thinne or myne. 
Secundus detractor. 3a! that old shrewe Joseph, my 
trowth I plyght. 

Was so anameryd upon that mayd. 
That of hyr bewty^, whan he had syght, 

He sesyd nat tylle had here asayd. 
Primus detractor. A ! nay, nay, wel wers she hath hym 
payd, 

Sum fresche 3onge galaunt she lovyth wel more. 
That his leggys to here hath leyd, 

And that doth greve the old man sore. 



184 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

SecunduB detractor. Be my trowthe, al may wel be, 

ffor freschd and fayr she is to syght. 
And suche a mersyl, as semyth me, 

Wolde cause a 5onge man to have delyght. 
Primtu detractor. Suche a 3onge damesel of bewt^ 
bryght, 

And of schap eo comely also. 
Of hire tayle oftetyme be lyght. 

And rygh tekyl undyr the too, 
Secundus detractor. That olde cokolde was evyl begylyd^ 

To that fresche wenche whan he was wedde ; 
Now muse he faderyn anothyr mannys chyldoi 

And with his swynke he xal be fedde. 
Primus detractor. A 3onge man may do more chore in 
bedde 

To a 3onge wench, than may an olde ; 
That is the cawse suche lawe is ledde, 

That many a man is a kokewolde. 

Hie sedet episcopus Abi^achar inter duos legis doc- 
tcreSf et audientes hanc de/amationem vocat ad se detract 
tores f dicens, 

Episcopus. Herke 30, felaways, why speke 30 suche 
schame 

Of that good virgyn, flayr mayd Mary ; 
30 be acursyd so hire for to defame. 

She that is of lyff so good and holy. 
Of hire to speke suche velany, 

30 make myn hert ful hevy of mood ; 
I charge 30W sese of 30ure fids cry, 

ffor sche is sybbe of myn owyn blood. 
Secundus detractor. Syb of thi kyn thow that she be^ 

Alle gret with chylde hire wombe doth swelle ; 
Do calle here hedyr» thiself xal se 

That it is trewthe that I the telle. 



THE TRIAL OF JOSEPH AND MART. 18S 

Primus detractor. Sere, ffbr 30ur sake I xal kepe cown- 
celle. 

30W for to greve I am ryght loth ; 
But lest, seres, lyst what seyth the belle, 

Oure fayr mayd now gret with childe goth. 
Primus doctor Ugis, Take good heed, seres, what 30 doth say, 

Avyse 30W wele what 3e present ; 
3yf this be fownd fals, anothyr day 

Ful sore 36 xal 3 our tale repent. 
Secundus detractor. Sere, the mayd forsothe is good 
and gent, 

Bothe comely and gay, and a fioLyr wenche ; 
And feetly with help sche can consent 

To set a cokewolde on the hye benche. 
Secundus doctor legis. 3 e be to besy of 3 our langage, 

I hope to God 30W fals to preve ; 
It were gret rewthe she xulde so outrage. 

Or with suche synne to myscheve. 
Episcopus. This evy talys my hert doth greve. 

Of hire to here suche fowle dalyawnce ; 
If she be fowndyn in suche repreve. 

She xal sore rewe here governawns. 

Sym Somnere, in hast wend thou thi way,— - 

Byd Joseph and his wyff be name 
At the coorte to appere this day. 

Here hem to pourge of her defame. 
Sey that I here of hem grett schame, 

And that doth me gret hevynes ; 
If thei be clene withowtyn blame, 

Byd hem come hedyr and shew wyttnes. 
Den. AUe redy, sere ; I xal hem calle. 

Here at 3our courte for to appere ; 
And yf I may hem mete withalle, 

I hope ryght sone thei xal ben here. 



186 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Awey, seres, lete me com nere, 

A man of wurcbep here comyth to place. 
Of curtesy me semyth 5e be to lere. 

Do of 50ur hodys with an evyl grace. 
Do me smn wurchep befor my face, 

Or be my trowthe I xal 30W make. 
If that I rolle 30W up in my race, 

ffor fere I xal do 30ur ars qwake. 
But 3it sum mede and 3e me take, 

I wyl withdrawe my gret rough toth. 
Gold or sylvyr I wyl not forsake. 

But evyn as alle somnores doth. 

A ! Joseph, good day, with thi fiajrr spowse. 

My lorde the buschop hath for 30W sent ; 
It is hym tolde that in thin house, 

A cockoldeis bowe is eche nyght bent. 
He that shett the bolt is lyke to be schent :— - 

fiayre mayde, that tale 3e kan best telle ; 
Now be 30ure trowthe telle 3our entent, 

Dede not the archere plese 30W ryght welle ? 
Maria. Of God in heyjn I take wyttnes. 

That synful werk was nevyr my thought ; 
I am a mayd 3it of pure clennes, 

Lyke as I was into this werd brought. 
Den. Othjrr wyttnes xal non be sought. 

Thou art with childe, eche man may se ; 
I charge 30W bothe 3e tary nought. 

But to the buschop com forth with me. 
Jtaeph. To the buschop witli 30W we wende, 

Of oure purgacion have we no dowth. 
Maria. Almyghty God xal be oure frende, 

Whan the trewthe is tryed owth. 
Den. 3 a no this wyse excusyth here every scowte. 



THE TRIAL OF JOSEPH AND MART. 187 

Whan here owyn synue hem doth defiEune ; 
But lowly than thei gyn to lowth. 

Whan thei be gylty and fowndyn in blame. 

Therfore com forthe, cokewolde be name. 

The bus^hop xal 30ur lyff appose ; 
Com forth also, 36 goodly dame, 

A clone huswyflp, as I suppose. 
I xal 30W tellyn, withowtyn glose, 

And 30 were myn withowtyn lak ; 
I wolde eche day beschrewe 30ur nose, 

And 3e dede brynge me suche a pak. 

My lord the buschop, here have I brought 

This goodly copyl, at 30ur byddyng ; 
And as me semyth as be here fraught, 

^^ffajrr chylde, lullay," sone must she syng. 
Primus detractor. To here a credyl and 3e wolde brynge, 

30 myght save monye in here purse ; 
Becawse she is 30ur cosyn 3ynge, 

I pray 30W, sere, lete her nevyr £Eure the wers. 
Episcqpus. Alas ! Mary, what hast thou wrought ? 

I am aschamyd evyn for thi sake ; 
How hast thou chaungyd thin holy thought ? 

Dude old Joseph with strenght the take ? 
Or hast thou chosyn another make. 

By whom thou art thus brought in schame ? 
Telle me who hath wrought this wrake ; — 

How hast thou lost thi holy name ? 
Maria, My name, I hope, is saff and sownde, 

God to wyttnes I am a mayd ! 
Of ffleschly lust and gostly wownde. 

In dede nere thought I nevyr asayd. 
Primus doctor legis. How xulde thi wombe thus be arayd, 

So grettly swollyn as that it is ? 



138 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

But if sum man the had ovyr-layd, 

Thi wombe xulde never be so gret i-wys. 
Secundtis doctor legis. Herke thou, Joseph, I am afrayd 

That thou hast wrought this opyn synne ; 
This woman thou hast thus betrayd, 

With gret flaterynge or sum fals gynne. 
Secundus detractor. Now be myn trowthe je hytte the 
pynne, 

With that purpose in feyth I holde ; 
Telle now how thou thus dudyst wynne. 

Or knowlyche thiself ffor a cockewold. 
Joseph, Sche is for me a trewe clene mayde, 

And I for hire am clene also ; 
Of fflesschly synne I nevyr asayde, 

Sythyn that sche was weddyd me to. 
Episcopus. Thou xalt not schape from -us 31 tt so ; 

ffyrst thou xalte tellyn us another lay ; 
Streyt to the awter thou xalt go, 

The drynge of vengeawns ther to asay. 

Here is the hotel of Goddys vengeauns ; — 

Thys drynk xal be now thi purgacion ; 
This hath suche vertu by Goddys ordenauns, 

That what man drynk of this potacion, 
And gothe serteyn in processyon, 

Here in this place this awtere abowth. 
If he be g Ity, sum maculacion 

Pleyn in his fieice xal shewe it owth. 

Iff thou be gylty, telle us, lete se, 

Over Godys myght be not to bolde : 
If thou presume and gylty be, 

God thou dost greve many a folde. 
Joseph. I am not gylty, as I fyrst tolde, 

AUemyghty God I take wytnes ! 



THB TRIAL OF JOSEPH AND MART. 189 

Episcopus. Than this drynke in hast thou holde, 
And on processyon anon the dresse. 

Hie Joseph bibii et septies drctdvit aUare dicen»f 

Joseph. This drynk I take with meke entente 

As I am gyldes, to God I pray, — 
Lord 1 as thou art omnypotente, 

On me thou shewe the trowthe this day. (Mode bMt.) 
About this awtere I take the way, 

O gracyous God ! help thi servaunt, 
As I am gyltles ajen 3on may, 

Thin hand of mercy this tyme me graunt ! 

Den. This olde shrewe may not wele gon, 

Longe he taryeth to go abowth ; 
Lyfte up thi feet, sett forthe thi ton. 

Or be my trewthe thou getyst a elowte ! 
Secundus detractor. Now, sere evyl Thedom, com to tiii 
snowte! 

What heylyght thi leggys now to be lame ? 
Thou dedyst hem put ryght freschly owte, 

Whan thou dedyst play with 3on 3onge dame. 

Primus detractor. I pray to God gyf hym myschawns, 

Hese leggys here do folde for age ; 
But with this damysel whan he dede dawns. 

The olde charle had ryght gret corage. 
Den. The shrewe was than sett in a dotage. 

And had good lust that tyme to pleyn ; 
3aff sche not 30W cowdel to potage. 

Whan 36 had don, to comforte 30ur brayn ? 

Joseph. A ! gracyous God, help me this tyde, 

Ageyn this pepyl that me doth fame ; 
As I nevyr more dede toche where syde. 

This day help me fro werdly schame ! 



140 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Abowte this awtere to kepe my fame, 

Vij. tymes I have gon rownd abowte ; 
If I be wurthy to suffyr blame, 

O ryghtful God, my synne shewe owughte. 

Episcopus. Joseph, with hert thank God thi Lorde, 

Whos hey3 mercy doth the excuse ; 
ffor thi purgacion we xal recorde, 

With hyre of synne thou dedyst never muse. 
But, Mary, thiself mayst not refuse ; 

AUe grett with chylde we se the stonde. 
What mystyr man dede the mysuse. 

Why hast thou synnyd ageyn thin husbonde ? 

Maria. I trespacyd nevyr with erthely wyght j 

Therof I hope, thorowe Goddys sonde. 
Here to be purgyd before 30ur syght, 

ffrom alle synne clene, lyke as myn husbonde. 
Take me the hotel out of 30ur honde. 

Here xal I drynke befom 30ur face ; 
Abowth this awtere than xal I fonde, 

Vij. tymes to go, by Godys grace. 

Prtffita doctor legii. Se this bolde bysmare wolde presume, 

Ageyn God to preve his myght ! 
Thow Goddys vengeauns hyre xuld consume, 

Sche wyl not telle hyre fals delyght. 
Thou art with chylde, we se in syght. 

To us thi wombe the doth accuse. 
Ther was nevyr woman 3itt in suche plyght. 

That ffrom mankynde hyre kowde excuse. 

Primus detractor. In ffeyth I suppose that this woman slepte 
Vl^thowtyn alle coverte, whylle that it dede snowe. 

And a flake therof into hyre mowthe crepte. 

And therof the chylde in hyre wombe doth growe. 



THE TRIAL OF JOSEPH AND MART. 141 



*• Than beware dame, for this is wel i-knowe 
Whan it is bom, yf that the sunne shyne, 
It wyl tume to watyr ageyn, as I trowe, 

ffor snow onto watyr dothe evyr more reclyne. 

Secmubts doctor legis. With Goddys hyj myght, loke thou not 
jape, 

Of thi purgacion wel the avyse ; 
Yf thou be gylty, thou mayst not schape, 

Beware evyr of Grod, that ryghtful justyce. 
If God with vengeauns set on the his syse, 

Not only thou but alle thi kyn is schamyd ; 
Bettpr it is to teUe the trewthe devyse. 

Than God for to greve and of him be gramyd. 



I trostyn m his grace, I xal hym nevyr greve. 
His servaunt I am in worde, dede, and thought ; 
A mayd undefyled I hope he xal me preve, 

I pray 30W lett me nought. 
Episcopus. Now be that good Lord, that alle this werd hath 
wrought, 
If God on the shewe ony manyr tokyu, 
Purgacion I trowe was nevjr so dere bowth. 
If I may on the in any wyse be wrokyn. 

Holde here the hotel and take a large draught. 

And abowth the awtere go thi processyon. 
Marya. To God in this case my cawse I have be-taught, 

Lorde, thorwe thin helpe, I drynke of this potacyon. 

Hie beata virgo bUnt de potadone^ ei postea circuivU altarej 
dicenSy 

God, as I nevyr knew of mannys maculacion. 

But evyr have lyved in trew virginite. 
Send me this day thin holy consolacion. 

That alle this fayr peple my clennes may se. 



14S COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

gracyous God, as thou hast chose me, 
ffor to be thi modyr, of me to be bom 1 1 

Save thi tabernacle that clene is kepte for the» 
Whiche now am put at repref and skorn. 

Gabryel me tolde with wordys he beforn, 
That 3e of 30ur goodnes wold become my chylde ; 

Help now of 30ur hy3ness, my wurchep be not lorn, 
A ! dere sone, I pray 30W, help 30ur modyr mylde. 

Episcopus. Almyghty God, what may this m^e, 
ffor alle the drynke of Goddys potacyon. 

This woman with chylde is fayr and clene» 
Withowtyn fowle spotte, or macnlacion. 

1 cannat, be non ymagynacion, 

Preve hyre gylty and synful of lyff ; 
It shewit opynly, by here purgacion, 
Sche is clene mayde, bothe modyr and wyff ! 

Primus detractor. Be my fadyr sowle here is gret gyle. 

Because sche is ^b of 30ur kynreed ; 
The drynk is chaungyd by sum fals wyle. 

That sche no shame xulde have this steed. 
Episcopwf. Becawse thou demyst that we do falshede, 

And for thou dedyst hem fyrst defame ; 
Thou xalt ryght here, magr^ thin heed, 

Befom alle this pepyl, drynk of the same. 

Primui deiracior. Syr, in good ffeyth 00 draught I puUe, 
If these to drynkeres have not alle spent. 

Hie bibU ti Mcenciena dohrem in c(gni€ cadUyCt 

Out, out, alas ! what heylith my scuUe, 
A ! myn heed with fiyre tne thynkyht is brent ! 

Mercy, good Mary, I do roe repent. 
Of my cursyd and ffals langage. 



THE TBIAL OF JOSEPH AND MARY. 143 

Maria. Now, G^, Lord in hevyn omnypoteot. 
Of his grett mercy 30ur seknes aswage. 

JEpisccpus. We alle on knes ffalle here on grownd. 

Thou Goddys handemayd prayng for grace ; 
Alle cursyd langage and achame on sownd. 

Good Mary, ffor3eve us here in this place. 
Maria* Now God for3eve 30W alle 3owre trespace, 

And also for3eve 30W alle defamacion 
That 3e have sayd, bothe more and lesse, 

To myn hynderawnce and maculacion. 

JEpiscopus. Now blyssyd virgyne, we thank 30W alle 

Of 30ure good hert and gret pacyens ; 
We wyl go with 30W hom to 3 our halle, 

To do 30W servys with hy3 reverens. 
Maria. I thank 30W hertyly of 30ur benevolens. 

Onto 3 our owyn hous I pray 30W 3e goo, 
And take this pepyl hom with 30W hens^ 

I am not dysposyd to passyn hens froo. 

Episcqptu. Than ffarewel, mayden and pure virgyne, 

Farewel, trewe handmayd of God in blys I 
We alle to 30W lowly inclyne, 

And take oure leve of 30W, as wurthy is. 
Maria. AUemyghty God, 3 our weys wysse, 

flTor that hy3 lord is most of myght, 
He mote 30W spede, that 30 not mys, 

In hevyn of hym to have a syght. 

Joseph. Honouryd in hevyn be that hy3 lorde, 

Whos endles grace is so habundaunt. 
That he doth shewe the trewe recorde 

Of iche wyhgt that is his trewe servaunt. 
Tliat Lord to wurchepe with hert plesaunt, 

We bothe be bownd ryght on this place. 



144 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Wbiche oure purgacyon us dyde graunt, 
And prevyd us pure by hie} grace* 

Maria, fforsothe, good spowse, I thank hym hy3ly^ 
Of his good grace ffor our purgacion ! 

Oure clennes is knowyn ful opynly, 
Be vertu of his grett consolacion. 



XV. THE BIRTH OF CHRIST. 



Jo9eph. Lord, what txavayl to man is wrought ! 

Rest in this werd behovyth hym non ; 
Octavyan oure emperor sadly hath besought 

Oure trybutehym to here, ffolk must forth ichon. 
It is cryed in every bourgh and cety be name ; 

I that am a pore tymbre wryth, bom of the blood of 
Davyd, 
The emperores comawndement I must holde with. 

And ellys I were to blame. 

Now, my wyff Mary, what sey 3e to this ? 

For sekyr, nedys I must fforth wende 
Onto the cyt^ of Bedleem, flTer hens i-wys ; — 

Thus to labore I must my body bende. 
Maria. Myn husbond and my spowse, with 30W wyl I 
wende, 

A syght of that cy t^ ffayn wolde I se ; 
If I myght of myn alye ony ther ffynde. 

It wold be grett joye onto me. 

Joseph. My spowse, 3e be with childe, I fere 30W to kary, 

ffor me semy th it were werkys wylde ; 
But 30W to plese ryght ffayn wold I, 

3itt women benethe to greve whan thei be with childe« 
Now latt us fforth wende as ffast as we may, 

And almyghty God spede us in oure jumay ! 
Maria. A ! my swete husbond, wolde 36 telle to me, 

What tre is 3on standynge upon 3on hylle ? 

L 



146 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Josephe. fforsothe, Mary, it is clepyd a chery ire ; 

In tyme of 3ere 30 myght ffede 30W theron 30ur fiylle. 
Maria. Turne ageyn, husbond, and behold 3on tre, 

How that it blomyght now so swetiyt 
Joseph. Cum on, Mary, that we worn at 3on cyt^ ; 

Or ellys we may be blamyd, I telle 30W lythly, 
Maria. Now, my spowse, 1 pray 30W to behold, 

How the cheryes growyn upon 3on tre \ 
flTor to have therof ryght ffayh I wokl^ 

And it ple^d 30W to labors 90 meehe for me. 
Joseph. 3oar desyre to ffiiifyUe I xiQ aspay sdkytlj) v 

Ow to plucke 30W of tiiete cheries ; it is a werk wylde, 
fibr the tre is so hy3 it wd not be lyghtty, 

Therfore lete hym pluk 30W cheryes begatt Jow with childei 
Maria. Now, good Lord^ I pray the grauBt me this boun, 

To have of these cheries, and it be 3oar wylle : 
Now, I thank it Grod, this tre bowyth to me downe ! 

I may now gaderyu anowe, and etyn my %lle. 
Josephe. Ow, I know weyl I have offendyd my God in 
Trinyt^, 

Spekyng to my spowse these unkynde Wurdys ; 
fFor now I beleve wel it may notl other be. 

But that my spowse beryght the kyngys soil of blys ; 
He help us n<lW at dul^ nede 1 
Of the kynrede of Jesse worthely w6re 36 bore, 
Kynges and patryarkys 30W beffore, 
AUe these wurthy of 30ur kynred wore, 

As clerkys in story rede. 
Maria. Now, graitiercy, husbond, for 36tir report ! 

In oure weys wysdy late us forth wende ; 
The fiulyr allemyghty he be oure coihfbrt ! 

The Holy Gost gloryous he be oure frende I 
Joseph. Heyl, wurchepful sere, and good day ! 

A ceteceyn of this cyt^ 3e seme to be ; 



THG BI&TH OF CHRIST. 147 

Of herborwe fibr spowse and me I 30W pray# 

ffor trewly this woman is fful wer^^ 

And fayn at reste, sere, wold she be ; 
We wolde ffulffylle the byddynge of oure empeiqure^ 
Sar to pay trybute, as lyght is oure, 
And to kepe oureselfe ffrom dolowre^ 
We are come to this cyt& 
Cwea* Sere, ostage in this towne know I non. 

Thin wy ff and thou in for to slepe ; 
This cet^ is besett with pepyl every won, 

And jett thei ly withowte fful every, strete. 

A^thinne no walle, man, comyst thou nowth, 

Be thou onys withinne the cyt^ gate ; 
On ethys in the strete a place may be sowth, 

Theron to reste, withowte debate. 
Joseph Nay» sere, debate that wyl I nowth ; 

Alle suche thyngys passyn my powere : 
But 3itt my care and alle my thought 

Is for Mary, my derlynge dere. 

A ! swete wyff, what xal we do ? 

Wher xal we logge this nyght ? 
Onto the ffadyr of heffne pray we so, 

Us to kepe ffrom every wykkyd whyt. 
Cives. Good man, o word I wyl the sey. 

If thou wylt do by the counsel of me ; 
3ondyr is an hous of haras that stant be the way,. 

Amonge the bestys herboryd may je be. 
Maria. Now the fadyr of hefne he mut jow jelde 1 

His sone in my wombe forsothe he is ; 
He kepe the and thi good be fryth and ffelde ! 

Go we hens, husbond, for now tyme it is. 

But herk now, good husbond, a newe relacyon, 

Whiche in myself I know ryght welle ; 

l2 



148 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Cryst in me hath take incarnacion, 
Sone wele be borne^ the trowthe I fele. 

In this pore logge my chawmere I take, 

Here for to abyde the blyssyd byrthe 
Of hym that alle this werd dude make»— - 

Betwyn myn sydes 1 fele he styrthe. 
Joseph. God be thin help, spowse, it swemyth me sore, 

Thus febyly loggyd and in so pore degr^^ 
Goddys sone amonge bestys ffor to be bore ; 

His woundyr werkys ffulfyllyd must be ! 
In an hous that is desolat, withowty any walle, 

£Fyer nor wood non here is. 
Maria. Joseph, myn husbond, abydyn here I xal, 

ffor here wyl be born the kynges sone of blys ! 
Joseph* Now, jentyll wyff, be of good myrthe. 

And if 30 wyl owght have, telle me what je tbynk ; 
I xal not spare for schep nor derthe, — 

Now telle me jour lust of mete and drynk. 
Maricu ffor mete and drynk lust I ryght nowth, 

Allemyghty God my fode xal be ! 
Now that I am in chawmere brought, 

I hope ryght welle my chylde to se. 
Therfore husbond, of jour honest^, 

Avoyd 30W hens out of this place ; 
And I alone, with humylit^. 

Here xal abyde Goddys hyj grace. 
Joseph. Alleredy^ wyff, 30W for to plese 

I wyl go hens out of jour way ; 
And soke sum mydwyvys 30W for to ese. 

Whan that je travayle of childe this day. 
fiarewelle, trewe wyff, and also clene may, 

God be 30ur comforte in Triny t^ ! 
Maria. To God in hevyn for 30W I pray, 

He 30W preserve wherso 30 be f 



THE filRTH OF CHRIST. 149 

Hie dum Joseph est absens parit Maria JUiwn trnge- 
nitum. 
Joseph. Now God, of whom comythe alle releffe, 

And as alle grace in the is grownde. 
So save n)y wyff from hurt and greffe, 

Tyl I sum mydwy vys for here have fownde t 
Traveljrnge women in care be bownde. 

With grete throwys whan thei do grone ; 
God, helpe my wyfT that sche not swownde I 

I am ful sory sche is alone. 

It is not convenient a man to be 

Ther women gon in travaljrnge } 
Wherfore sum mydwyff ffajrn wold I se. 

My wyff to helpe that is so 3enge. 
yehmy. Why makyst thou man suche momyng? 

Telle me sumdele of 3our gret mone. 
Joseph. My wyf is now in gret longynge^ 

Travelyng of chylde, and is alone : 
ffor Godys love that sytt in trone, 

As 3e, mydwyvys, that kan jour good. 
Help my jonge spowse in hast anone^ — 

I drede me sore of that fayr food. 
Salome. Be of good chere and of glad mood. 

We ij. mydwyvys with tlie wylle go j 
Ther was nevyr woman in suche plyght stood. 

But we were redy here help to do. 

My name is Salomee, alle men me knowe 

ffor a mydwyff of wurthy fame 5 
Whan women travayl, grace doth growe, 

Ther as I come I had nevyr shame. 
yelomye. And I am jelomye, men knowe my name ; 

We tweyn with the wyl go togedyr, 



160 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And help thi wyfiTfro hurt and grame ; 

Come forthe, Joseph, go we streythe thedyr. 
Joseph. I tiiank 30W, datnys, 30 cotnforte my lyff, 

Streyte to my spowse walke we the way. 
In this pore logge lyght Mary my wyff;. 

fijrre fbr to co'mfbrte, gode frendys, asay. 
Salome. We dare not entre this logge in fay, 

Thej^ is therin so gret bryghtnes^ — 
Mone^be tiyght nor smme be day 

Shone nevyr so clere in ther lyghtnesse. 
yelomye. Into this hous dare I not gon, 

The woundyrffulle lyght doth me affray. 
Joseph. Than wyl nQrself gem in alon, 

And chere my wyff, if that I may ; 
Alle heyl, maydon and wyff, I say ! 

' How dost thou fore ? telle me thi chere ! 
The for to comfdrte in gesyne this day, 

Tweyn gode mydwyvis I have brought here. 
The for to h^lpe that art in harde bonde, 

3elomye and Satomee be come with me, — 
ffor dowte of drede "withowte thei do stond, 

And dare not come in for lygbt that tliey se. 

Hie Maria subridendo dicaty Maria. 

Maria. The myght of the Qodhede in his magest6 

Wyl not be byd now at this whyle ; 
The chylde that is bom wyl preve his modyr fre, 

A very clene mayde, and therfore I smyle. 
Joseph. Why do 30 lawghe, wyff ? 30 be to blame ; 

I pray 30W, spowse, do no more so ; 
In happ the mydwyvys wyl take it to grame, 

And at 30ur nede helpe wele non do. 
Iff 3e have nede of mydwyvys, lo 1 

Peraveuture thei wyl gon hens : 



THE BIRTH OF 0HKI8T, 161 

Th^rfioir be sad and 50 may so, 

And wynnyth alle the mydwy vis good diligens. 
Maria. Husbond, I pray 30W dysplese 30W nowtfa, 

Thow that I lawghe and gret joye have ; 
Here is the chylde this werde hath wrought, 

Born now of me, that alle thynge xal save. 
Joieph. I aske 30W grace, for I dyde rave ! 

gracyous childe, I aske mercy ! 
As thou art Lord and I but knave, 

ffor3eve me now my gret foly ! 

Alas ! mydwyvis, what have I seyd? 

1 pray 30W come to us more nere ; 
fibr here I fynde my wyfF a mayd. 

And in here arme a chylde hath here. 
Bothe mayd and modyr sche is in ffere, 

That Grod wole have may nevyr more fayle ; 
Modyr on erthe was nevyr non cler, 

Withowth sche had in byrthe travayle. 
'^elomy. In byrth travayle muste ache nedys have, 
. Or ellys no chylde of here is bom. 
Joseph. I pray 30W, dame, and 3e vowchesave. 

Com se the chylde my wyff beforn. 
Salome. Crete God be in this place ! 

Swete systyr, how fiure 3e ? 
Maria. I themk the fadyr of his hy3 grace. 

His owyn son and my chylde here 30 may se. 
^elomye. Alle heyl, Mary, and ryght good mom ! 

WTio was mydwyfe of this ffayr chylde ? 
Maria, He that nothynge wyl have forlorne 

Sent me this babe, and I mayde mylde. 
^elomye. With honde lete me now towche and fele, 

Yf je have nede of medycyne ; 
I xal 30W comfbrte and helpe ryght wele, 

Aa other women, yf 36 have pyne. 



152 COVENTRY MTST£RIBS. 

Maria. Of this fayr byrthe that here is myn, 
Peyne nere grevynge fele I ryght non ! 

I am clene mayde and pure virgyn, 
Tast with jour hand jourself alon. 

Hicpalpat }elomye beat am virginemy dicens, 

}eIomy, O myghtfulle God, have mercy on me ! 

A merveyle Uiat nevyr was herd beforn ! 
Here opynly I fele and se 

A fayr chylde of a maydon is borne, 
And nedyth no waschynge, as other don, — 

fful clene and pure forsothe is he ; 
Withoutyn spott or ony polucyon, 

His modyr nott hurte of virgynit^ ! 

Coom nere, gode systyr Salome, 

Beholde the brestys of this clene mayd, 
fful of fayr mylke how that thei be, 

And hyre chylde clene, as I fyrst sayd ; 
As other ben nowth fowle arayd, 

But clene and pure, bothe modyr and chylde ; 
Of this matyr I am dysmayd 

To se them bothe thus undefyled. 
Salome. It is not trewe ; it may nevyr be 

That both be clene, I cannot beleve : 
A maydes milke never man dyde se, 

Ne woman here chylde withowte grett greve. 

I xal nevyr trowe it, but I it preve. 

With hand towchynge but I assay ; 
In my conscience it may nevyr cleve, 

The sche hath chylde and is a may. 
Maria. 30W for to putt clene out of dowth, 

Towche with jour hand and wele asay : 
Wysely ransake and trye the trewthe owth, 

Whethyr I be fowl yd, or a clene may. 



THE BIRTH OF CHRIST. 158 

ERc tangit Salomee Marue, et cum arescerU mamu yu$ 
uherandOf et, quanflendoy dicii, 

Salomee. Alas ! alas ! and weleawaye ! 
ffor my grett dowth and Beils beleve, 
Myne hand is ded and drye as claye ! 
My fals untrost hath wrought myscheve ! 

Alas ! the tjrme that I was born. 

Thus to ofFende a3ens Goddys myght ! 
Myn handys power is now alle lorn, 

Styff as a stykke and may nowth plyghU 
fibr I dede tempte this mayde so bryght, 

And helde a3ens here pure clennes, 
In grett myscheff now am I pyght : 

Alas ! alas ! fibr my lewdnes. 

lord of myght ! thou knowyst the trowthe. 
That I have evyr had dred of the ; 

On every power wryght evyr I have rowthe. 
And 3ove hem almes for love of the. 

Bothe wyff and wedowe that askyght for the. 
And frendles chylderyn that haddyn grett nede, 

1 dude them cure and alle for the. 

And toke no rewarde of them nor mede. 

Now as a wrecche fibr fals beleve, 

That I shewyd in temptynge this mayde. 
My hand is ded and doth me greve ! 

Alas ! that evyr I here assyde. 
Angelus. Woman, thi sorwe to have delayde, 

Wurchep that childe that ther is bom : 
Towche the elothis ther he is layde, 

fibr he xal save alle that is lorn ! 
Salomee. O gloryous ehylde, and kynge of blysse f 

I aske 30W mercy for my trespace ; 



154 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

I knowlege my synne, I demyd amys ; 

blyssyd babe, grawnt me smn grace ! 
Of 30W, mayde, also here in this place, 

1 aske mercy, knelynge on kne; 
Moste holy mayde, grawnt me solace, 

Sum wurde of comforte sey now to me. 
Maria. As Goddys aungel to 30W dede telle. 

My chylde is medecyn ffor every sor ; 
Towche his clothis be my cowacelle, — 

30wre hand ful sone he wyl restor. 

Hie Sahmee tangii ftmbriam Chris ti, dicens^ 

Salomee. A ! now blyssyd be this chylde evermore — 

The sone of Grod forsothe he is ! 
Hath helyd myn hand, that was forlore 

Thorwe ffals beleve and demynge amys. 
In every place I xal telle this, 

Of a clene mayde that God is bom : 
And in oure Lyknes God now clad is, 

Mankend to save that was forlorn. 
His modyr a mayde as sche was beforne, 

Natt fo^ifle pollutyd, as other women. be ; 
But fiayr and fresche, as rose on thorn, 

Lely wyte clene with pure virginyt^. 

Of this blyssyd babe my leve now do I take. 

And ako of 50W, hy3 modyr of blysse ! 
Of this grett meracle more kiiowlege to make, 

I xal go telle it .in iche place i*wys. 
Maria, fl^ufewel, good dame, and God 30ur wey wysse. 

In all 30ur jumay God be 30ur8pede ; 
And of his hy3 mercy that Lord so 30W blysse. 

That 3e nevyr offende more in word, thought, nor dede. 
yehmy. And I also do take my leve here, 

Of alle this .blyssyd good company ; 



THE BIRTH OF CHRIST. 155 

Praynge 30ur grace, bothe fere and nere ; 

On U8 to spede 30ur endles mercy. 
Joseph. The biyssyng of that Liord that is most myghty. 

Mote sprede on 30W in every place, 
Of alle 3our enmyes to have the victory, 

God that best may giawnt 30W his grace ! Amen. 



XVI. THE ADORATION OF THE 

SHEPHERDS. 



Angelas adpastores dicit, *^ Gloria in excelsis Deo/' 

Joye to Crod that sytt in hevyn, 

And pes to man on erthe grownde ! 
A chylde is bom benethe the levyn, 

Thurwe hym many ffolke xul be unbownde. 
Sacramentys ther xul be vij., 

Wonnyn Uiorowe that childys wounde ; 
Therfore I synge a joyful stevene, 
The flowre of frenchep now is founde ! 

God that wonyght on hy3, 
He is gloryed mannys gost to wynne. 
He hath sent salve to mannys synne, 
Pes is comyn to mannys kynne, 

Thorwe Goddys hi3e wysdam I saye. 
Primus Pastor. Maunfras, Maunfras, felawe myn, 
I saw a grett lyght with bryght shyne, 
3it saw I nevyr so mervely asyne, 

Shapyn upon the skyes. 
It is bryghtere than the sunne bem, 
It comyth ryght over alle this rem, 
Evyn above Bedleem, 

I saw it brenne thryes ! 
Secundus Pastor, Thu art my brother Boosras, 
I have beholdyn the same pas, 
I trowe it is tokenynge of gras, 

That shynynge shewyght befom ! 



THE ADORATION OF THE SHEPHERDS. 157 

Balaam spak in prophesye, 

A Ijght xuld shyne upon the skye, 

Whan a chylde of a mayd Marye 

In Bedleem were i-bom. 
Teriius Pastor, Thow I make ly tyl noyse of this, 
I am an herde man that hattyht sayyng amyce, 
I herde spekyng of a chylde of blyce. 

Of Moyses in his lawe. 
Of a mayd a child xuld be borne. 
On a tre he xuld be torn, 
Dely ver folkys that am forlorn, — 

The chylde xulde be slawe. 
Primug pastor. Balaam spake in prophecie, 
Out of Jacob xuld shyne a skye. 
Many fiblke he xulde bye 

With his bryght blood. 
Be that bryght blod that he xulde blede, 
He xal us brynge fro the develys drede, 
As a duke most dowty in dede, 

Thorwe his dethe on rode. 
Secundus Pastor. Amos spak with mylde methe, 
A frute swettere than bawmys brethe, 
His dethe xulde slen owre sowlys dethe, 

And drawe us alle from helle. 
Therfore suche lyght goth befom, 
In tokyn that the childe is born, 
Whiche xal save that is forlorn, — 

As prophetys gonne spelle. 
Ter tins pastor, Danyel the prophete thus gan speke, 
Wyse God from woo us wreke, 
Thi bryght hevyn thou to-breke, 

And medele the with a mayde. 
This prophecye is now spad, 
Cryst in our kende is cletd, 
Therfore mankend may be glad. 

As prophetes befom han seyd. 



158 COVBNTRY ICYSTERIEB. 

^^ Gloria in excelsis deo/' Content. 
Primus Pastor. Ey, ey ! this was a wondyr note, 

That was now songyn above the sky I 
I have that voys, fful wele I wote, 

Thei songe gle glo glory. 
Secundus Pastor. Nay, so mot y the, so was it nowth, 

I have that songe fful wele I ntun, 
In my wytt weyl it is wrought: — 

It was gle glo glas gbtm. 
Tertius Pastor. The songe me thought it was gbry ; 

And aftyrwarde he seyd us toy- 
Ther is a chylde born xal be a prynce myghty, 

ffor to seke that chylde I rede we go. 
Primus Pastor. The prophecye of Boosdras is spedly q)ed ; 
Now leyke we hens, as that lyght us lede : 
Myght we se onys that bryght on bed, 

Oure sorow it wolde unbynde. 
We xulde shadyr for no shoure, 
Buske us hens to Bedleem boure. 
To se that fiayr fresche flowre. 

The mayde mylde in mynde. 
Secundus Pastor. Lete us ffolwe with alle oure myght, 
With songe and myrthe we xul us dyght, 
And wurchep with joye that wurthy wyght. 

That Lord is of mankynne. 
Lete us go fforthe fast on hye. 
And honowre that babe wurthylye. 
With merthe, songe, and melodye ; 

Have do ! this songe begynne i 

Tunc pas tores cantabunt ^' Stella c€Bli extirpamt.** 
Qjuo facto, ibunt ad querendum Christum. 

Primus Pastor. Heyle floure of floures, fayrest i-fownde ! 

Heyle, perle peerles, prime rose of prise ! 
HeyU blome on bedde 1 we xul be unbownde 

With tha blody woundys and werkys fulle wyse. 



THE ADORATION OF THE SHEPHERDS. 159 

Heyl, God grettest, I grete the on grownde ! 

The gredy devyl xal grone grysly as a gryse, 
Whan thou wynnyst this worlde with thi wyde woun^, 
And puttyst man to paradys with plenty of prys ; 

To love the is my delyte. 
Heyl, floure and fre ! 
Lyght from the Trynyt^ ! 
Heyl, blyssyd mote thou be ! 

Heyl, mayden, fayrest in syght ! 
Secundus Pastor. Heyl, floure ovyr fflour fowndy n in fryght ! 
Heyl, Cryst, kynde in oure kyth ! 
Heyl, werker of wele to wonyn us wyth ! 

Heyl ^nner i-wys ! 
Heyl, fibrmere and ffrende ! 
Heyl, iFellere of the fende ! 
Heyl, clad in oure kende ! 

Heyl, prince of paradys ! 
Tertiua pastor. Heyl, Lord over lordys, that lyggyst ful 

lowe! 
Heyl, kjnge ovyr kynges thi kynrede to knowe ! 
Heyl, comely knyth the devyl to overthrowe ! 

Heyl, flowre of alle ! 
Heyl, werkere to wynne 
Bodyes bowndyn in synne ! 
Heyl, in a bestys bynne, 

Be-stad in a stalle ! 
Joseph. Herdys on hylle, 
Bethe not stylle, 
But seyth 30ur wylle, 

To many a man ; 
How God is bom, 
This mery morn, 
lliat is forlorn 

Fyndyn he can. 
Secundus Pastor. We xuUe telle, 
Be dale and hylle, 



160 COVENTRY MYSTERIES, 

How harwere of helle 

Was bom this nyght, 
Myrthis to melle, 
And fondys to quelle. 
That were so felle 

A3en8 his ryght. 
Secundus Pastor, ffarewel^ babe and barae of blys ! 
fiarewel. Lord that lovely is ! 
The to wurchep thi feet I kys ; 

On knes to the I falle. 
The to wurchepe I falle on kne, 
Alle this werd may joye of the ! 
Now fiEurewel, Lord of grett poust6 ! 

3a9 farewel, kynge of alle. 
Teriiui Pastor, Thow I be the last that take my leve, 
3it fayre muUynge, take it nat at no greve ; 
Now, fiayre babe, wele mut thou cheve ! 

fiayr chylde, now have good day. 
fiareweyl, myn owyn dere derlyng : 
I-wys thou art a ryght fiayr thyng ! 
fiarewelj my Lorde and my swetyng ! 

fiarewel, bom in pore aray ! 
Maria. Now, 3e herdmen, wel mote 3e be, 

ffor 30ure omage and 30ur syngynge : 
My sone xal aqwyte 30W in hefne se, 
And 3 eve 30W alle ryght good hendynge 1 Amen. 



\- 



XVI [• ADORATION OF THE MAGI. 



Herode, As a lord in ryalt^ in non regyon so ryche. 

And rulere of alle remys, I ryde in ryal aray ; 
Ther is no lord of lond in lordchep to me lyche, 

Non lofflyere, non lofsumere, — evyr lestyng is my lay : 
Of bewtd and of boldnes I here evermore the belle ; 

Of mayn and of myght I master every man; 
I dynge with my dowtynes the devyl down to helle, 

iFor bothe of hevyn and of herthe I am kynge sertayn. 

I am the comelyeste kynge clad in gleteringe golde, 

3a^ and the semelyeste syre that may bestryde a stede ; 
I welde att my wylle alle wyghtes upon molde,— - 

3a, and wurthely I am wrappyd in a wurthy wede. 
36 knyghtes so comely, bothe curteys and kene, 

To my paleys wyl I passe, fuUe prest I 30W plyth ; 
3e dukys so dowty, ffolwe me be-dene 

Onto my ryal paleys, the wey lyth ful ryght. 

Wyghtly fro my stede I skyppe down in hast,— 

To myn hey3 hallys I haste me in my way ; 
3e mynstrelle of myrthe, blowe up a good blast, 

Wliylle I go to chawmere and chaunge myn array. 
Primus Rex, Heyl be the kynges tweyne, 
fferre rydyng out of 30ur regne ! 
Me thynkyth be 3our presentes seyne, 
36 sekyn oure Savyour. 

M 



162 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

ffro Saba have I folwyd fferre 
The glemynge of 3011 gay sterre ; 
A chyldys blood xal bye us dere, 

That ther is bom in bestes boure. 

My name is kynge Balta3afe, 
Of prophetys speche I am ware, 
Therfore a fferre wey I fiEkre, 

A maydenys childe to seche. 
ffor he made man of the moolde, 
And is kynge of hevyn holde, — 
I wyl hym offere the irede golde. 

As reson wyl me teche. 

Sectmdus Rew. Melchi3ar that my name is kydde. 
In bote love mjm herte is hydde. 
To the blosme upon his bedde 

Bom by bestes bynne. 
In Tarys I am kynge with crowne. 
By bankys and brymmys browne, 
I have travaylid by many a towne, 

My Lfordys love to wynne. 

I seke hym with ensens sote. 
Of alle prestys he xall be rote, 
His bryght blood xal be oure bote, 

To brynge us out of bonde. 
The childe xal be chosyn a preste, 
In all vertuys ffownden meste ; 
Befom his faderes fayr breste 

Ensens he xal up sende. 

Tercius rex. In Ypotan and Archage 
I am kynge knowyn in kage, 



ADORATION OT THE MAGI. 168 

To seke a childe of semlant age 

I have faryn ryght ffem. 
Jasper is my name knowjm, 
In many countres that are myn owyn, 
Thorwe byttyr blastys that gyn blowyn, 

I stryke aftere the sterre. 

I brynge myrre to my present, 
A byttyr lyoour verament, 
ffor he xal sufiyr byttyr dent, 

In a maydonys flesche is clad. 
On byttyr tre he xal be bent, 
Man and God omnypotent, 
With byttyr betynge his fflesche be rent, 

Tyl alle his blood be bledde. 

Herod, Now I regne lyk a kynge areyd ful ryohe^ 

Rollyd in ryngges and robys of array } 
Dukys with dentys I dryve into the dyche. 

My dedys be ful dowty demyd be day. 
I xalle marryn tho men that belevyn amysee. 

And there in sette there sacramentes are I say ; 
Theris no lorde in this werde that lokygh me lykei-wysse 

fibr to lame herytykk of the lesse lay. 
I am jolyere than the jay, 
Stronge thevys to steke. 
That wele oure lawys breke, 
On the wrecchis I wylle be wreke, 

And hont hem undyr hay. 

In kyrtyl of cammaka kynge am I cladde, 
Cruel and curryd in myn crowne knowe ; 

I sytt here ondyr Sesar in my sette sadde, 
Sorwyn to sottys suche sede wytt I sowe. 

M 2 



164 COV^ENTRT MTSTERIES. 

Boys now blaberyn bostynge of a baron bad. 

In Bedlem is bom be bestys, suche bost is blowe ; 
I xal prune that paddok and prevyn hym as a pad, 
Scheldys and sperys shalle I there sowe ; 

My knyghtes xalle rydyn on a rowe. 
Knave and chylderyn ffor to qwelle. 
Be Mahound, dyng ne duke of belle, 
Sowre deth his lyff xalle selle, 

Suche threttes wolde me overthrowe. 

Styward bolde, 

Walke thou on mowlde. 

And wysely beholde 

Alle abowte ; 
Iff any thynge 
Shuld greve the kynge, 
Brjrnge me tydydge. 

If there be ony dowte. 

SenescaUus, Lord, kynge in crowne, 
I go fro towne, 
By bankys browne 

I wylle abyde ; 
And with erys lyste, 
Est and west. 
If any geste 

On grownde gynnyth glyde. 

Tkmc Mi 9ene8caUu8 et obviabii tribus regibus et dicit eii 

Kynges iij., 
Undyr this tre. 
In this countr^ 

Why wylle 36 abyde ? 
Herowde is kynge 
Of this wonynge, 



ADORATION OF THB MAGI. 165 

OdIo his dwellynge 

Now xul 36 glyde* 

Primui Rex, Nowe lede us alle 
To the kynges halle, 
How it befalle, 

We pray to the, 
Wyttys to wete 
He may us pete^ 
In flesshe be glete, 

Grodys frute fre* 

Senescallus, fiblwith in stownde 
Upon this grownde, 
To the castel rownde, 

I xal 30W teche 
Were kynge wonyt wyde, 
Up in this tyde, 
In pompe and pryde, 

His myght gynnyth reche* 

Sere kyng in trone, 
Here comyth anone 
By strete and stone 

Kynges thre. 
They here present, — 
What thei have ment, 
Ne whedyr they arn bent, 

I cannot se. 

Herodes rex, I xal hem crave 
What they have 5 
Iff they rave, 

Or waxvn wood, 
I xal hem reve 



168 COVBNTRY MYSTERIES. 

Here wyttys deve, 
Here hedys cleve. 

And schedyn here blood. 

Primus rex, Heyl be thou kynge in kage ful hye, 
Heyl, we nyghe thin halle ryght nye ! 
Knowyst thou ought that chylda slye 

He is bom here abowth P 
He is bom of a mayd 3yDge, 
He xal be kynge over every kynge. 
We go to soke that lovely thjmge, — 

To hym fiayn wolde I lowth. 

SectmduM rex. Balaam spake in prophecye, 
A sterre xulde ful lovelye 
Lythtyn upon mayd Marye, 

Comyn oi Jacobys kynne. 
The childe is bom, and lythe here by, 
Blomyd in a madenys body, 
A sterre hath strekyn upon the sky 

And ledde us fayr be fenne. 

Tertiiu rex. The sterre hath ledde us out of the Est, 

To seke a baroun bom best; 

He xal be kynge of myghtes mest, 

As prophecy gynnjrth spelle. 
We be kynges in wey wory ; 
Syr kynge, ffor thi curtesy, 
Telle us to that childe to lovely. 

In what towne gynnyth he dwelle. 

Uerode$ rex. 30 thre kynges rekenyd be rowe, 
Ley now downe 30ur wurdys lowe, 
Suche a carpynge is unknowe, 

Onrekenyd in my regno. 



ADORATION OF THE MAGI. 167 

I am a kynge of hy} degr^, 
Ther xal non ben above me, 
I have florens and fryhthis fre, 

Parkys and powndes pleyne. 

But goth to fynde that 3e seche, 
And yf 36 knowe suche a leche, 
And 56 hym fynde, I 30W beseche, 

Comyth a3en be me. 
And I xal be bothe blythe and do bowne, 
That alle worchep to hym be done, 
With reverens I xal seke hym sone, 

And honor hym on kne. 

And, therfore^ kynges, I 30W pray, 
Whan 30 have don 3our jmnay ; 
Come a3en this same way. 

The trewthe to me to telle. 
Ck)me and telle me as 36 spede. 
And I xal qwyte ryght wel 30ur mede, 
With gold and tresour and ryche wede. 

With furres ryche and wurih pelle. 

Primus Rex. Kynge have good day, 
I go my way. 

To seche 
Lord of myght, — 
He xal be ryght 

Oure leche. 

Secundus Rex. Kynge fful sterne, 
fie felde and feme, 

I goo 
To sekyn a kynge, — 
He takyth wonynge 

In woo. 



168 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Tertius Rex. If we hym finde, 
Oure kynge ful kynde. 
Be a may, 
ffrom kynge and qwen. 
We comyn a3en, 

This day. 

TVanrieni, 
Herodes Rex. A I fy, fy, on talys that I have ben tolde. 

Here beforn my cruel kne ; 
How xulde a barn wax so bolde. 

Be bestys yf he bom be ? 
He is yong and I am olde, 

An hardy kyng of hye degr^ ; 
This daye tho kyngges xal be kold, 
If they cum ageyne be me. 

My goddes I xalle upreyse 1 
A derke devylle with falsnese, I saye, 
Shalle cast a myst in the kyngges eye, 
Be bankes and be dalys drey, 

That be derk thei xalle cum this weyes. 

Primus Rex. Go we to sek owr lorde and our lech. 
Yon stere wille us teche the weyis ful sone, 

To save us from myschyff God I here besech, 

Onto his joyn that we may rech, — 
I pray hem of this bone ! 

Tunc ibunt reges cum munerilms ad Jhesum et primus 
rex dicit^ 

Heyle be thou, kyng cold clade ! 
Heylle, with maydynys mylk fSside ! 
Heylle, I cum to the with gold glade, 

As wese wrytyng here it record. 
Golde is the rycheste metalle. 
And to weryng most ryallc, 



ADORATION OF THE MAGI. 169 

Grold I gyff the in this halle, 

And know the for my Lorde. 

Secundus rex. Lorde, I knele upon my kne ; 

Bote encence I offere to the, 

Thow xalte be the fyrst of hy3 degre. 

None so mekelle of myght ! 
In Goddes howse, as men xalle se, 
Thow xalt honor the Trynitd, 
lij. personys in oon Gode free, 

And alle oo lord of myght i 

Tertius Rex. Liorde, I knele downe be thy bede, 
In maydyns flesche thou arte hede, 
Thy name xal be wyde rede, 

And kyng over alle kynges. 
Byttyr myre to the I brynge, 
flFor byttyr dentes on the thei xalle djngj 
And byttyr deth xalle be thi endyng, 

And therfor I make mornyng. 

Maria, Kyngges kynde, 
ffrome the fende 

God 30W defende ! 
Homwarde 36 wende, 
And to your places 3e lende, 

That 3e xulde tende. 

Primus rex. Now have we the place fownde, 
To Herode go we this stownde, 
With owr wordes we were bownde, 

That we xulde cum ageyne. 
Go we a pace and sey owr speche, 
flFor we have fownde our Lorde and leche ; 
Alle the truth we wylle hem teche, 

How the kyng is borne of a quene. 



170 COVENTEY MYSTERIES. 

Secundus Rex, Myn hede is hevy as lympe of leede, 
But yf I slepe, I am adrede 

My witt xalle fare the worse ; 
I wax berjr in lyme and flanke, 
Downe I ley me upone this banke. 

Under this bryght sterre i-wys. 

TertiuB Rex. Brother, I must lye the bye, 
I will go never over this stye 

Tylle I have a slepe. 
The yong kyng and his mother Mary, 
Save us alle from every velany ! 

Now Cryst us save and kepe ! 

PrimuBrea. Such hevynese have us cawght, 
I must drynk with 30W a drawgbt, 

To slepe a lytyll whyle. 
I am hevy heed and footte, 
I xulde stumbylle at resche and root, 

And I xulde goo a myle. 

Hie dormiunt regeSy et venit angelus, et dicit eis. 

Afigelus. 3e kyngges on this hille, 
Werk 3e not aftyr Herodes wylle, 
For yf 30 do, he wylle yow kylle 

This day or nyglit« 
My lorde 30W sent this tydyng. 
To rest yow knygges in rych clothyng. 
And whan 39 rysyn and goo to your dwellyng, 

Tak home the wey fulle ryght. 
Whether that 30 be wakyn or slepe, 
My lorde God xalle yow kepe. 
In goode tyme 3e dede downe drepe 

To take 3owr rest. 
Herowdys to the devyl he tryste. 
To marre }ow in a thyrke myste, 



ADORATION OF THE MAGI. 171 

My lord God is ful of lyste, 

To glathe 30W for his geste. 

And therfore, kynges, whan 36 ryse, 
Wendytb forthe be weys wyse, 
Ther jour halle be sett in syse, 

In dyverse londe. 
The fiadyr of God in alle thynge 
HaHi )OW grawntyd his swete blyssynge, 
He xal 30W save ffrom alle shendynge, 

\^th his ryght honde. 

Tunc surgarU reges, et dicai 

Primus Rex. A bryght sterre ledde us into Bedleem, — 
A bryghter thynge I saw in drem, 
Bryghtere than the sunne beeme, 

An aungelle I saw ryght here. 
The fayre floure that here gan falle, 
flFrom Herowdys kynge he gan us kalle, 
He taught us horn tylle our halle 

A wey by another mere. 

Secundus Rex. I sawghe a syght, 
Myn hert is lyght 

To wendyn home. 
God, fful of myght 
Hath us dyght 

ffro develys dome. 

Tertius Rex. Oure God I blysse, 
He sent us, i-wys 

His aungel bryght. 
Now we be wake, 
The wey to take 

Home fulle ryght 



XVI II. THE PURIFICATION. 



Symeon Justus. I have be prest in Jherusalem heroi 

And tawth Qoddys lawe many a 3ere, 
Desyrynge in alle my mende, 

That the tyme we neyhand nere, 
In whiche Goddys son xul apere, 

In erthe to take mankende. 
Or I deyd that I myght fynde, 

My Savyour with myn ey to se ; 
But that it is so longe behynde, 

It is grett dyscomforte onto me. 

ffor I waxe olde and wante my myght, 

And begynne to fayle my syght, 
The more I sorwe this tyde ; 

Save only, as I telle 30W ryght, 
God of liis grace hath me hyght, 

That blysful byrth to byde ; 
Wherfore now here besyde, 

To Sancta Sanctorum wyl I go, 
To pray God to be my gyde, 

To comfort me aftyr my wo. 

Here Symeon knelyth and seyth, 

A ! gode God in Trinity 1 

Whow longe xal I abyde the, 
Tyl that thou son thou doth sende, 

That I in erthe myght hym se ? 



THE PURIFICATION. 173 

Grood Lord, consydyr to me, 

I drawe fast to an ende ; 
That or my strenthis fro me wende, 

Gode LiOrde, send dow thi son, 
That I with my ful mende, 

Myght wmt^heppe hym, if I con. 

Bothe with my fete and hondys to, 
To go to hym and handele also, 

My ejrn to se hym in certayn. 
My tonge for to speke hym to. 
And alle my lemys to werk and do. 

In his servyse to be bayn. 
Send forth thi son, my Lord soverejrn, 

Hastely anon withowte teryenge ; 
ffor fro this world I wolde be fiayn, — 

It is contrary to my levynge. 

Angelas, Symeon, leff thi careful stevene, 
ffor thi prayer is herd in hevene ; 

To Jherusalem ffast now wynne. 
And ther xalt se ful evene. 
He that is Goddys son ffor to nevene. 

In the tempi ther thou dwellyst inne. 
The darknes of orygynal synne. 

He xal make lyght and clarefye ; 
And now the dede xal begynne, 

Whiche hath be spokyn be prophecye. 

Symeon. A ! I thank the, Lord of grace. 
That hath grauntyd me tyme and space. 

To lyve and byde thys ! 
And I wyl walk now to the place, 
Where I may se thi sonys face, 

Whiche is my joye and blys. 



174 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

I was nevyr lyghtere i-wys, 

To walke nevyr here beforn 5 
ffor a mery tyme now is. 

Whan God my lord is bom. 

Anna Prophetessa. Al heyl^ Symeon ! what tydynges with 

30W? 
Why make 3e al this mjrrth now ? 

Telle me whedyr 39 &re. 
Symeon. Anne prophetes, and 30 wyst whou. 
So xulde 3e, I make avow, 

And alle maner men that are* 
ffor Goddys son, as I declare. 
Is bom to bye mankende ; 
Cure Savyour is come to sesyn oure care ; 
Therfore have I grett merthe to wende. 

And that b the cawse I hast me 
Onto the temple hym to se ; 

And therfor lett me not, good frende I 
Anna. Now blyssyd be Grod in Trinyt^, 
Syn that tyme is come to be. 

And with 30W wyl I wende* 
To se my Savyour ende, 

And wurcheppe hym also. 
With alle my wytt and my ful mende, 

As I am bound, now wyl I do. 

Ei tunc ibuni ambo ad templum et prophetissOy 

Symeon. In the temple of God who undyrstod. 
This day xal be offeryd with mylde mood, 

Whiche that is kynge of alle ; 
That xal be skorgyd and shedde his blood. 
And aflyr dyen on the rood, 

Withowtyn cawse to calle. 



THE PURIFICATION. 175 

ffor who6 passyon ther xal beffalle, 
Swyche a sorwe bothe sharpe and smerte ; 

That a swerd perce it xalle, 

3eTeiie thorwe his moderys herte. 

Anna. 5a, that zal be, as I wel fynde, 
ffor redempcion of alle mankende. 

That blysse ffor to restore. 
Whiche hath be lost fro oute of mende, 
As be oure fadyr of oure owyn kende, 

Adam and Eve beffore. 

Maria. Joseph my husbond withowtyn mys, 
3e wote that ffourty days nere is, 

Sythe my sonys byrth fful ryght ; 
Wherfore we must to the temple i-wys, 
Therfor to offre oure sone of blys, 

Up to his fadyr in hyght 
And I in Goddys syght, 

Puryfyed ffor to be ; 
In clene sowle with al my myght, 

In presence of the Trinyt^. 

Joseph. To be purefyed have 36 no nede, 
Ne thi son to be offryd, so God me spede ', 
ffor fyrst thou art ful clene, 
Undefowlyd in thought and dede ; 
And anothyr, thi son withowtyn drede. 
Is God and man to mene. 
Wherefore it nedyd not to bene. 

But to kepe the lawe on Moyses wyse 5 
Wherefore we xal take us betwene 
Dowys and turtelys ffor sacrefyce. 
Et ibimt ad temphm. 



176 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Symeon. Alle heyl, my kyndely comfortour ! 

Anna Prophetisaa. Alle heyl, mankjrndys creditour ! 

Symeon. Alle heyl, thou God of myght ! 

Anna ProphetUsa. Alle heyl^ mankyndys savyour ! 

Symeon. Alle heyl, bothe kynge and emperour ! 

Anna Prcphetissa. Alle heyl, as it is ryght ! 

Symeon. Alle heyl, also, Mary bryght ! 

Anna Prophetissa. Alle heyl, salver of seknes ! 

Symeon. Alle heyl, lanterne of lyght ! 

Anna Prcphetissa. Alle heyl, thou modyr of mekenes ! 

Maria, Symeon, I undyrstand and se, 
That bothyn of my sone and me 

3e have knowynge clere ; 
And also in 30ur compand 
My sone desyryth for to be ; — 

And therfFore have hym here. 
Ei accipiet Jhesum. 

Symeon* Welcome, prynce withowte pere I 

Welcome, Goddys owyn sone ! 
Welcome, my Lord so dere ! 

Welcome, with me to wone ! 

Suscepimusj Deus, misericordiam tuam. 

Lord God in magestd, 

We have receyvyd this day of the, 

In myddys of thi temple here. 
Thy grett mercy, as we may se. 
Therfore thi name of grett degrd 

Be wurchepyd in alle manere. 
Over alle this werde, bothe fere and nere, 

3evyn onto the unterest ende ! 
ffor now is man owt of daungere. 

And rest and pes to alle mankende. 

** Nunc dkniiiis servum tuum, Domine^ et cosier a.'* 
Thepialme song ther every vers, and (her qwyle Symeon 



THE PURIFICATION. 177 

plei/eih with the child, and qwhan the ptaimt if eiki^d^ 
he seyihf 

Now lete me dye. Lord, and hens pace ! 
ffor I thi servaunt in this place 

Have sen my Savyour dere ; 
Whiche thou hast ordeyned beforn the face 
Of al mankjrnde, this tyme of grace, 

Opynly to appere. 
That lyth is shjrnand clere, 

To alle mankyndys savacion ; 
Mary, take 30ur childe now here. 
And kepe wel this manis savacion. 

Anna prqphetissa, Ne I rowth nere to dye also, 
ffor more than ffowre skore 3 ere and to 
This tyme hath bede to se. 
And sythe that it is come therto, 
What Goddys wyl is with me to do, 

Ryght 3even so mot it be. 
Joseph. Take liere these candelys thre, — 

Mary, Symeon, and Anne ; 
And I xal take the fowrte to me, 

To offre oure childe up thanne. 

Maria. Hyest ffadyr, Grod of powere ! 
30ur owyn dere son I offre 30W here, 

As I to 30ur lawe am sworn. 
Receyve thi childe in glad manere, 
For he is the fyrst, this childe so dere. 
That of his modyr is bom. 
But 30W I offre hym 30W beforn. 

Good Lord, 3it 3yf me hym a3en ! 
ffor my comforte were fully lorn. 

If we xulde longe a-sondyr ben. 

Mori leyth the childe on the autere. 

N 



178 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Joseph. Sere prest of the temple, now 
Have he ffyffe pens unto 30W, 

Oure childe a3en to take. 
CapeUanua, It is the lawe, as 30 woot how, 
Joseph, 3e an do rygh a-now, 

As for 30ur childys sake. 
But othere offerynge 3ett must 3e make ; 

And therfore take 30ur sone^ Mary 1 
In meche joye 3e may awake, 

Whylys he is in 30ur company. 

Maria, Therto I am ful glad and fayn, 
fibr to receyve my childe agayn, 

EUys were I to blame. 
And afterewarde ffor to be bayn, 
To offre to God in ful certayn^ 

As in my sonys name, 
With ffowlys bothe wylde and tame,— - 

ffor in Goddys servyse I xal nevyr irke. 
Josqph. L40 ! Mary, have here tho same. 

To do thi dewtys of holy kyrke. 

And ther Mary offeryihffowlys onto the autere, and seyth, 

Maria. Allemyghtyfful fadyr, mercyful kynge ! 
Receyvyth now this lytyl offrynge, 

ffor it it the fyrst in degri^ 
That 3our lytyl childe so 3ynge, 
Presentyth to day be my shewyng. 

To 30ur hj3 magest^, 
Of his sympyl poverty, 

Be his devocion and my good wylle ; 
Upon 30ur awtere receyve of me, 

30ur sonys offrynge, as it is skylle I 



XIX. THE SLAUGHTER OF THE 

INNOCENTS. 



7\me retpidenB §eneicaUu$ vadit ad Herodem dieen», 

SeneicaUui. Lord, I have walkyd be dale and hylle, 

And wayted, as it is joar wylle ; 

The kynges iij. stelyn awey fulle stylle, 

Tborwe Bedleem londe. 
They wyl nevyr, so mot y the, 
Come in the lond of Galyl^ 
ffor to se 30ur &y cet^ 

Ne dedys of jomr honde* 

Herodes Rex. I ryde on my rowel rycbe in my regne, 

Rybbys fful reed with rape xal I sende ; 
Popetys et paphawkes I xal puttyn in peyne. 

With my spere prevyn, pychjrn, and to-pende. 
The gowys with gold crownys gate thei nevyr ageyn, 

To seke tho sottys sondys xal I sende ; 
Do howlott howtyn hoberd and heyn, 

Whan here barnys blede undyr credyl bende ; 
Sharply I xal hem shende i 
The knave childeryn that be 
In alle Israel country, 
Thei xul have blody ble, 

ffor on I calde unkende. 

It is tolde in Grw, 

His name xulde be Jhesu 

I-fownde. 

n2 



180 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

To have hym 36 gon, 

Hewe the flesche with the bon. 

And gyff hym wownde ! 
Now kene knyghtes, kythe 30ur craftys, 

And kyllyth knave chylderyn and eastyth hem in 
clay; 
Shewyth on 30ur shulderes scheldys and schaflys, 

Shapyht amonge schel chowthys ashyrlyng shray ; 
Doth ruwncye rennjrn with rakynge raftys, 

Tyl rybbys be to rent with a reed ray ; 
Lete no bame beleve on bete baftys, 
Tyl a beggere blede be bestys baye 
Mahound that best may ; 
I wame 30W my knyghtes^ 
A bam is bom I plyghtys, 
Wolde clymbjrn kynge and kyknytes, 
And lett my lordly lay. 

Knyghtys wyse, 
Chosyn ful chyse, 
Aryse 1 aryse ! 

And take 30ur tolle I 
And every page 
Ofij. 3ereage, 
Or evyr 3e swage^ 

Sleythe ilke a fool. 

On of hem alle 
Was bora in stalle, 
ffolys hym calle 

Kynge in crowne. 
With by ttyr galle. 
He xalle down falle, — 
My myght in halle 

Xal nevyr go down. 



THE SLAUGHTBR OF TH£ INNOCENTS. 181 

Primui Mtlet. I xall ale tcharlys, 
And qwenys with therlys, 
Here knave gerlys, 

I xal stake, 
fforihe wyl I spede. 
To don hem Uede, 
Thow gerlys gredoi 

We xul be wreke. 

Seeundui miles, ffor swerdys sharpe, 

Asanharpe, 

Qumiya xul karpe, 

Andofaorwesjmgo. 
Barnys 3onge, 
They xul be stunge, — 
Thurwe levyr and lunge 

We xal hem stynge. 

Angeha, Awake, Joseph, and take thi wyff, 

Thy childe also ryd be-lyff! 

ffor kynge Herowde, with sharpe knyff 

His knyghtes he doth sende. 
The Fadyr of hevyn hath to the sent, 
Into Egypte that thou be bent, 
ffor cruel knyghtes thi childe have ment 

With swerd to sle and shende. 

Joseph. Awake, good wyff, out of 3 our sleepe. 
And of }our childe takyght good kepe, 
Whyl I 3our clothis ley on hepe, 

And trus hem on the asse. 
Kynge Herowde the chylde wyl scloo, 
Therfore to Egypte muste we goo, 
An aungel of God seyd me soo, 

And therfore lete us passe. 



182 COVENTRY BCT8TERIRS. 

Thine ibuni ndliiea adpueroM occidendo9y et dicat prima 
fcsmina. 

Prima /{Bunina. Longe luUynge have I lorn ! 
Alas ! qwhy was my baron bom ? 
With swappynge swerde now is he shorn 

The heed ryght fro the nekke i 
Shanke and shulderyn is al tomtom, 
Sorwyn I se behyndjrn and befom, 
Both mydnyth, mydday, and at mom, — 

Of my lyff I ne recke. 

Secunda/temina. Serteynly I say the weane, 
Gon is alle my good game. 
My lytylle childe lyth alle lame, 

That lullyd on my pappysl 
My ffourty wekys gronynge 
Hath sent me sefioe ^ere sorwynge, 
Mykyl is my momynge. 

And ryght hard arae myn happys ! 



mUe^. Lforde in trone 
Makyght no mone, 
Qwenys gyn grone 

In werld aboute. 
Upon my spere 
A gerle I bere, 
I dare welle swere, 

Lett moderes howte. 



Secundui milei. Lord, we ban spad. 
As }e bad ; 
Barnis ben blad, 

And lyne in dycbe. 
fflescbe and veyn 



THE SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS. 18S 

Han tholyd peyn, 
And yd xul reyne 

Evermore ryche. 

Herades Rex. }e xul have stedyi 
To 30ur medys, 
Londys and ledys, 

ffrytb and ffe. 
Wele have 30 wrought. 
My fib is sought, 
To deth is he brought, — 

Now come up to me. 

In sete now am I sett, as kynge of myghtys most, 

Alle this werd ffbr ther love to me xul thei lowt ; 
Bothe of hevyn, and of erthe, and of helle cost, 

fibr dygne of my dygnyt^ thei have of me dowt. 
Ther is no lord lyke on lyve to me wurthe a toost. 

Nether kyng nor kayser in alle this world abought ; 
If any brybour do bragge or blowe a3eQs my host, 

I zal rappe tho rebawdys and rake them on rought. 
With my bryght bronde. 
Ther xal be neyther kayser nere kynge« 
But tlrnt I xal hem down dynge, 
Lesse than he at my byddynge 

Be buxum to myn honde. 

Now, my jentylle and curteys knyghtes, hexke to me this 
stownde. 

Good tyme sone me thynkyghe at dyner that we were ; 
Smertly therfore sett a tabylle anon here fful sownde, 

Coverid with a coryous clothe and with ryche wurthy fare ; 
Servyse ffbr the lovelyest lorde that levynge is on grownde, 

Beste metes, and wurthyest wynes, loke that 36 non spare ; 



184 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Thow that a lytyl pynt xulde coste a m*. pownde, 

Brynge alwey of the beste, for coste take }e no care^ — 
Anon that it be done. 
Senescdlius. My lorde, the tabyl is redy dyght ; 
Here is watyr, now wasche forth ryght ! 
Now blowe up mynstralle with alle 30ur myght ! 
The servyse coaiyth in sone. 

Herodes. Now am I sett at mete, 

And wurthely servyd at my degr^ ; 
Com forthe knyghtes, sytt down and ete, 

And be as mery as 38 kan be. 
Primus Miles. Lord, at 3owre byddynge we take oure sete. 

With herty wyl obey we the ; 
Ther is no lord of myght so grett, 

Thorwe alle this werde in no country, 
In wurchepp to abyde ! 
Herodes. I was nevyr meryer here beforn, 
Suthe that I was fyrst born. 
Than I am now ryght in this mom, — 
In joy I gynne to glyde. 

Mors. Ow ! I herde a page make preysyng of pride, 

Alle prynces he passyth, he wenyth, of powst^ ; 
He wenyth to be the wurthyest of alle this werde wyde, — 

Kynge ovyr alle kynges that page wenyth to be. 
He sent into Bedlem, to seke on every syde, 

Cryst for to qwelle, yf thei myght hym se ; 
But of his wykkyd wyl lurdeyn 3itt he lyede, 

Goddys sone doth ly ve, — ^ther is no Lord but he ! 
Over alle lordys he is kynge ! 
I am Dethe, Goddys masangere ! 
Allemyghty God hath sent me here, 
3un lordeyn to sle, withowtyn dwere, 
flPor his wykkyd workynge. 



THE SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS. 185 

I am sent fro God, Deth is my name 1 

Alle thynge that is on grownd I welde at my wylle ; 
Bothe man and beste, and byrdys, wylde and tame, 

Whan that I come them to, with deth I do them kylle. 
Erbe, gres, and tres stronge, take hem alle in same ; 
3a, the grete myghty okys with my dent I spylle; 
What man that I wrastele with, he xal ryght sone have 
schame,— 
I 3eve him suche a trepett, he xal evyr more ly stylle, 
ffor deth kan no sporte. 
Wher I smyte, ther is no grace, 
ffor aftere my strook man hath no space 
To make amendys ffor his trespace, 

But God hym graunt comforte. 

Ow 1 ae how prowdely 3on kaytyff sytt at mete 1 

Of deth hath he no dowte, he wenyth to leve evyrmore ; 
To hym wyl I go, and 3eve hym suche an hete, 

That alle thelechis of thelonde his lyf xul nevyr restore : 
A3ens my dredful dentys it vaylyth nevyr to plete, 

Or I hym part fro I xal hym make ful pore ; 
Alle the blood of his body I xal hym owt swete, 

ffor now I go to sle hym with strokys sad and sore, 
This tyde. 
Bothe hym and his knyghtes alle, 
I xal hem make to me but thralle, 
'With my spere sle him I xalle, 

And so cast down his pride. 

Herodes Rex. Now, kende knyghtes, be mery and glad ! 

With alle good diligens shewe now sum myrthe 1 
ffor, be gracyous Mahound, more myrthe never I had, 

Ne nevyr more joye was inne from tyme to tyme of 
my byrthe ; 
ffor now my fo is ded and prendyd as a padde, 



186 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Above me is no kynge on grownd nere on gerthe ! 
Merthis therfore make ye^ and be ryght nothynge sadde ; 
Spare nether mete nor drynke, and spare for no dyrthe 
Of wyne nor of brede. 
f!br now am I a kynge alone, 
So wurthy as I may ther be none, 
Therfore knyghtes be mery echone, 
ffor now my fib is dede ! 

Primus Miles. Whan the boys sprawlyd at my sperys 
bende, 
By Satbanas, oure syre, it was a goodly syght ! 
A good game it was the boy for to shende. 
That wolde a bene oure kynge and put 30W from 30ur 
ryght. 
Secundus Miles. Now trewly, my lorde the kynge, we 
had ben unkende. 
And nevyr non of us able for to be a knyght ; 
If that any of us to hem had ben a frende. 
And a savyd any lyff a^en thi mekyl myght, — 
ffirom deth hem to flytt. 
Herodes Rex. Amonges alle that grett rowtlite 
He is ded, I have no dowte, 
Therfore, menstrblle, rownd abowte 
Blowe up a mery fytt. 

Hie dum buccbumi mars inierfidat Herodem ei duos 
subito, et diabolus redpitU eos, 



Diabolus, Alle oure 1 alle oure ! this catel is myn ! 

I zalle hem brynge onto my celle ! 
I xal hem teche pleys fyn. 

And shewe suche myrthe as is in helle ! 
It were more bettyr amonges swyne. 

That evyr more stynkyn ther be to dwelle ; 





» JB TJOT- 



:* 



« ^Jl* iBit V 



Of IDT oGKzrrss do nuin i^ >hM^\ 
fibr wfaan men xn^ke nH>*l ww^i) tH^^s 
Than sodejrnly I oiwl tww i« \^^^S 

And sl<» tl\ou\ ovyu lu*UU» 



188 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Thow I be nakyd and pore of array. 

And wurmys knawe me all abowte, 
3it loke 36 drede me nyth and day, 

ffor whan deth comyth, 3e stande in dowte ; 
Evyn lyke to me, as I 30W say, 

Shulle alle 3e be here in this rowte ; 
Whan I 30W chalange at my day, 

I xal 30W make ryght lowe to lowth. 
And nakyd for to be. 
Apaonges wormys, as I 30W telle, 
Undyr the erthe xul 36 dwelle. 
And thei xul etyn bothe flesche and felle. 
As thei have don me. 



XX. CHRIST DISPUTING IN THE 

TEMPLE. 



Modo de doctoribus dispuiantibus cum Jhesu in ien^Io. 

Frimus doctor. Scripturae sacrse esse dinoscimur doctos, 

We to here the belle of alle roaner clergyse. 
Secfindus doctor. Velud rosa omnium florura floe, 

Lyke onto us was nevyr clerke so wyse. 
Primus doctor. Loke what scyens 3e kan devyse. 

Of redynge, wrylynge, and trewe ortografye; 
Amonges alle clerkys we here the prysse. 

Of gramer, cadens, and of proeodye. 
Secundus doctor. No clerke abyl to here oure book 

Of versyfyeng, nor of other scyens ; 
Of swete musyke who so wylle look, 

Seke no ferther but to oure presens. 
Of dyaletyk we have the hy3 excellence, 

Of sophestrye, logyk, and phylosophye; 
Ageyn oure argemente is no recystence, 

In metaphesyk ne astronomye. 
Primus doctor. Of calculacion and negremauncye. 

Also of augrym and of asmatryk ; 
0[f] lynyacion that longyth to jematrye. 

Of dyetis and domys that longyth to phesyk ; 
In alle this scyens is non us lyke. 

In Caton, Gryscysme, nor Doctrynal ; 
And for endytynge with retoryke, 

The hyest degr^ is oure over alle. 



190 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Secundui doctor. In grett canon and in cevyle lawe, 

Also in Bcyens of polycye. 
Is non to lis wurthe an hawe,— 

Of alle cunnynge we here the maystrye ; 
Tberfbre in this temple we sytt on hye. 

And of most wurchep kepe the sovereynt^ ; 
Ther is on erthe no man so wurthye 

The hy3 stat to holdyn^ as we tweyn be. 

Jhesua. Omnis sciencia a Domino Deo est : 

Al wytt and wysdam of God it is lent ; 
Of alle 30ur lernynge withinne 3our brest. 

Thank hyghly that Lord that hath 30W sent ; 
Thorwe beet and pryde 30ur soulys may be shent, 

Of wytt and wysdome 3e have not so meche^ 
But God may make, at heee entente. 

Of alle 3oar connynge many man 30W leche. 

Primus doctor. Goo hom, lytyl babe, and sytt en thi moderes 
lappe. 

And put a mokador afbm thi brest ; 
And pray thi modjrr to fede the with the pBLffpe^ 

Of the for to leme we desyre not to lest. 
Secundus doctor. Gro to thi dyner, for that behovyth the best. 

Whan thou art a threste than take the a sowke ; 
Aflyr go to cradyl therin to take thi rest, 

ffor that canst do bettyr than for to loke on book. 

Jhesui. Stondynge that 36 be so wytty and wyse. 

Can 3e owth tellyn how this werde was wrought ? 
How longe xal it laste can 3e devyse. 

With alle the cunnynge that 3e han sought ? 
Primus doctor. Nay alle erthely clerkys that telle can nought, 

It passyth oure wytt that for to contryve ; 
It is not possyble abought to be brought, — 

The worldys endyng no man kan dyscryve. 



GHBBT KBPDTI19G IK THE TfiWTLE. UB 



How it wms WHWght, and how ioi^ i| xal encbm, 

Tlflit I cm teDe be good delybonuaon ; 
Kot mHj tiwraf^ but of every creatare. 

Ham it k wroogiil;., I kiiowe tiie phMmnsioii. 
Seemmim thdmr. Of tiii wurdys I faa^ «koiw ud deiyaoM 

How fldndde a d^lde, diat Mvyr kttyr dyde Ief«s 
Con to ibt wjtt of oo fay3 oogEtywMi 

Of tiio gvBte ipnicjB that so wondyrfeOk i^eve P 



r. ABe thynge is brought to inibniuinoii. 

Be thre peraooyB, oo God in Tiynit^ I 
And OD of tho thre hath take iDcamation, 

Bodie fleacbe and blood of amayd £Ei«; 
And be that mygfat of tho pereonys tfar^, 

Hevyn and erthe and alle thynge is wrought ; 
And as it pleiytfa tiiat hy5 roagest^ 

AUe Ihynge xal leste and longer nowght» 



dodor. I gmmnt weyl alle thyngetiiat God dydkmake^ 

And withowtyn hym nothynge may be ; 
But o tfaynge thou seydyst, and that I forsake, 

That oo God alone was personys thre ; 
Syght onpossyble that is to me, 

That on is thre I kannot thynke : 
If thou canst preve it, anon lett se, 

ffor in oure hertys it may nevyr synke, 

Jhesu». In the sunne eonsydyr 30 thynges thre, 

The splendure, the hete, and the lyght ; 
As tho thre partys but 00 sunne be, 

Ryght so ihre personys be 00 God of myght. 
Secundus doctor. In very feyth this reson is ryght ; 

But }itt, fieiyr babe, 00 thynge we pray 30W: — 
What do alle tho thre personys hyght 

Us to enforme ? 30 sey to roe now. 



192 



COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 



Jftesus. The fyrst is calile the failyr of mj-ght, 

The seeunde the sone of wysdam and wytt ; 
The hnly gost the iij*". of grace he is lyght, 

And in oo substauns alle these iij. be knyt. 
Primus doctor. Another questyon I aske jow jitt, 

je seyd on of these iij, toke flesche and blood ; 
And sclie a rlene niayde, I kannot beleve it, 

Clene niayde and modyr never 3it in oo persone sto 

JAesus. Lyke as the eunne doth pers the glas. 

The glas not hurfe of his nature ; 
Ryght so the Godhede entryd has 

The virgynes wombe, and sche mayd pure ; 
That maydonys ehilde xal do grett cure, 

Convicte the devyl in tlie opyn folde ; 
And with his bolde berst fecche horn his creature, 

Mankende to save Iiis brest xal be the echelde. 

Secundus doctor. This childys doctryne dothe passe o 

Sum aunge! of hevyn I trowe that he be ; 
But, blyssyd babe, of oo dowte jitt, 

We pray )0W enfonne us for charyt^ — 
Wliiche toke flesche of the personys thre, 

Ageyn the fende to holde suche batayle ? 
Jketui. The seeunde peraone forsothe is he, 

Xal fray the fende withowte fayle. 

Primus doctor. Why rather he than any of that tother, 

TTie fyrst or t!ie thyrde, why conie they nowtli ? 
Jhesus. This is the cawse why, sertys, and non other, 

Ageyn the seeunde the trespas was wrought ; 
Whan the serpent Adam to synne browth. 

He temptyd hyni nowght be the faderes myght ; 
Of the gostys goodnes spak he ryght nowght. 

But in connynge he t*mptyd hym ryght. 






CHRIST DISPUTING IN THE TEMPLE. IQS 

M yght is the Faderys owyn propyrt^ ; 

To the Go6t apperyd is goodnes ; 
In none of these tweyn temptyd he 

Mankende to synne, whan he dede dresse : 
To the Sone connynge doth longe expres, 

Therwith the serpent dyd Adam asay, — 
*' Ete of this appyl/' he seyd no lesse, 

'* And thou xalt have connynge as God verray," 

Thus the secunde person attrybute. 

Was only towchyd by temptacion ; 
Wherfore hymself wyl holde the sewte, 

And kepe his propyrte fro maculacion. 
Secundus doctor. This is an hevynly declaracion, 

Oure naturalle wytt it doth excede ; 
So jonge a childe of suche informacion 

In al this werld nevyr er non 3ede. 

Primus doctor. We be not worthy to kepe this sete, 

Whylle that oure mayster is in presens ; 
The maystry of us this childe doth gete, — 

We roust hym wurchep with hy3 reverens ! 
Come forthe, swete babe of grett excellens. 

The whysest clerke that evyr 3ett was bom ; 
To 30W we 3 eve the hy3 resydens, 

Us more to teche, as 39 have done beforn. 

Hie adducunt Jhesum inter ipsos et in scanno altiori ipsum 
seder e/acitmty ipsis in inferioribus scannis sedentibus, et ait 

Secundiis doctor. So 3onge a chylde suche clergye to reche, 

And so sadly to say it, we woundyr sore. 
Who was 3oure mayster ? who dede 30W teche ? 

Of what man had 3e this wurthy lore ? 
Jhesus. My wytt and my lernynge is no 3onge store ; 

Or this worde was wrought alle thinge dede I knowe ; 

o 



194 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

fiyrst or 36 wore borne }ere8 many score, 

Thorwe the myght of my fadjrr, my wytt in me dede flowe. 

Primus doctor. Or that we weryn born, nay that may nat be ; 

The 3onge8t of ns tweyn is iij. score }ere of age. 
And tbiselfe art but a cbylde, al men may wel se, 

Late camst out of cradyl, as it semy th be thi vesage. 
Jhesus. I am of dobyl byrthe and of dobyl lenage ; 

ffyrst, be my Fadyr I am without gynnynge, 
And lyke as he is hendeles in his hy^ stage. 

So xal I also nevyr mor have endynge. 

ffbr be my ffadyr, l^yng® celestyalle, 

Without begynnyng I am endles ; 
But be my modyr that is ccurnalle, 

I am but xij. 3ere of age, tliat is expres ; 
My body of 30ughe doth shewe wyttnes, 

Whiche of my modyr here I dude take ; 
But myn hy3 godhede, this is no lesse, 

Alle thinge in this worlde forsothe dude I make. 

Secundus doctor. Be 30ur fadjrr that endles is : 

Who is 30ur modjrr ? telle us we pray. 
Jheaus. Be my fadjrr, the hy3 kynge of Uys, 

A modyrles chylde I am veray. 
Primus doctor. Who was 3our fadjrr to us than say ? 

Be 30ur modyr a woman that was. 
Jhesus. I am ffadyrles ; as for that may, 

Of fleschly luste she dude nevyr trespas. 

Secundus doctor. Telle us, I pray 30W, what is 30ur name ? 

What hyght 3oure modyr ? telle us also. 
Jhesu. Jhesu of Na3areth, I am the same. 

Born of. a dene mayd, propfaetys seyd so ; 
Ysaye seyd thus, — " Ecce virgo !" 

A mayd xal conc^^^vein-olennes a chylde 



CHRIST DISPUTING IN THB TEMPLE. 195 

3itt ageyn nature and alkende, loo ! 
ffrom alio wenn of synne pure and undefyide. 

Mary, the chylde of Joachym and Anne, 

Ys that clene mayd, and here childe am I ; 
The frute of here wombe xal save every manne 

ffrom the grett dowte of the fiyndys tormentry. 
Primus doctor. Alle the clerkys of this worlde trewly 

Cannot brynge this to declaracion ; 
Lesse than thei have of Grod Ahnyghty 

Sum influens of informacion. 

Secundus doctor. No, jentyl Jhesu, we 50W pray, 

Whyl that we stodye a whyle to dwelle ; 
In cas mo dowtys that we fynde may, 

The trewthe of hem ^e may us telle. 
Jhesu. Goo, take 3 our stodye and avyse 30W welle, 

And alle 30ur leysere I xal abyde ; 
If any dowtys to me 3e melle. 

The trewthe therof I xalle unhyde. 

Maria. Alas ! alas ! myn hert is wo. 

My blyssyd babe awey is went ; 
I wott nevyr whedyr that he is go : 

Alas ! for sorwe myn hert is rent ! 
Jentyl hysbond, have yow hym sent 

Out on herrande to any place ? 
But yf 36 knowe were he is bent, 

Myn hert for woo asondyr wyl race. 

Joseph. On my massage I hym not sent, 

Forsothe, good wyff, in no degr^ ; 
How longe is it that he hens went ? 

What tyme dude 30 30ur childe last se ? 
Maria. Trewly, gode spowse, not these days thre ; 

Therfore myn herte is cast in care : 



196 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Hym for to seke, wher so he be ; 

In hasty good husbonde, lete us forthe fare. 

Joseph. Than to Hierusalem lete us streyte wende, 

ffor kynred gladly togedyr wole gon ; 
I hope he is ther with sum good ffrende ; 

Ther he hath cosynys ryght many on. 
Maria. I am aferde that he hath fon, 

ffor his grett wyttes and werkys good ; 
Lyke hym of wytt fforsothe is non, — 

Every childe with hym is wrothe and wood. 

Alas, my babe ! my blys ! my blood ! 

Whedyr art thou thus gon fro me ? 
My sowle ! my swetyng I my frute 1 myn ffood 1 
" Send me sum wurd where that thou be ! 
Telle me, good seres, ffor charyt^, 

Jhesu, my childe^ that babe of blysse, 
Among this compaynd dude ^e hym se ? 

ffor Godys love, telle where he is 1 

Primus doctor. Of oo qwestyone I am bethought, 

Alle of }Our modyr, that blyssyd may ; 
In what govemauns is she brought ? 

How is sche rewlyd be nyght and day ? 
Jhesu. An old man, Joseph, as I 30W say, 

Here weddyd be meracle onto his wyff ; 
Here for to fede and kepe alway. 

And bothyn in dennesse be maydenys olyff. 

Secundus doctor. What nede was it here to be wedde 

Onto a man of so grett age ? 
Lesse than thei myght bothe a go to bedde, 

And kept thi lawe of maryage. 
Jhesus. To blynde the devyl of his knowlache, 

And my byrthe fcom hym to hyde, — 



CHRIST DISPUTING IN THE TEMPLE. 197 

That holy wedlok was grett stopage. 
The devyl in dowte to do abyde. 

Also^ whan sche xolde to Egypte gon, 

And fle from Herowde, for dowte of me ; 
Becawse she xulde nat go alon, 

Joseph was ordeyned here make to be, 
My ffadyr, of his hy3 magest^, 

Here for to comforte in the way : 
These be the cawsys, as 3e may se. 

Why Joseph weddyd that holy may. 

Maria. A ! dere childe ! dere chylde ! why hast thou 
thus done ? 

ffor the we have had grett sorwe and care ; 
Thy fiadjrr and I thre days have gone, 

Wyde the to seke of blysse ful bare. 
Jhesus. Why have 3e sought me with hevy fare ? 

Wete 36 not wele that I muste bene 
Amonge hem that is my faderes ware, 

His gostly catel for to ovyrsen ? 

Maria. 30ur ffaderes wyl must nedys be wrought. 

It is most wurthy that it so be ; 
3itt on 30ur modyr have 39 sum thought. 

And be nevyr more so longe fro me. 
As to my thynkynge, these days thre, 

That 3e absente have ben away, 
Be more lengere in ther degre 

Than alle the space of xij. 3ere day. 

Jhesus, Now, flFor to plese my modyr mylde, 

I xal 30W folwe with obedyence; 
I am 30ur sone and subjecte childe. 

And owe to do 30W hy3 reverence. 



198 COTBNTBY MT8TERIES. 

Home with 30W I wyl go hens : — 

Of 30W, clerkys, my leve I take. 
Every childe xulde, with good dyligens ; 

His modyr to plese, his owyn wyl to forsake. 

Primus doctor. O biyssyd Jhesu ! with 30W we wende. 

Of 30W to have more informacion ; 
fful biyssyd is 30ur raodyr hende. 

Of whom 3e toke 30ur incamaeion ! 
We pray 30W, Jhesu, of consolacion, 

At oure most nede of 30W to have,— « 
All that hath herd this consummacion 

Of this pagenty jour grace them save ! Amen I 



XXI. THE BAPTISM OF CHRIST. 



Johannes. Ecce vox clamantis in deserto I 

I am the voyce of wyldemese. 
That her spekyth and prechyth yow to ; 

Loke 36 forsake alle wrecchidnesse ! 
flTorsake alle synne that werkyth woo. 

And tume to vertu and holynese ! 
Beth clene of levyng in your sowle also ; 

Than xalle he be savyd from peynfulnese 
Of fyere brynnyng in helle ! 
If that 3e forsak synne, 
Hevyn blysse xalle 30 wyne, 
Drede 3e not the devylles gynne, 

With angells xalle 30W dwelle ! 

Penitenciam nunc agite ! 

Appropinquabit regnum coelorum ! 
ffor your trespas penaunce do 30, 

And 36 xalle wjme hevyn Dei deorum I 
In hevyn blyse ye xalle wyn to be, 

Among the blyssyd company omnium supemorum ; 
Ther as is alle merth^ j^y^^ ^^^ g^^^y 

Inter agmina angelorum, 

In blyse to abyde ! 
Baptyme I cowncelle yow for to take, 
And do penaunce for ys synnys sake, 
And for your offens amendys 36 make. 
Your synnys for to hyde. 



200 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

I gyff baplyme in water puere. 

That is callyd flom Jordon ; 
My baptyme is but sygnyfure 

Of his baptyme that his lyke hath non ! 
He is a lord of gret valour, 

I am not worthy to onbokylle his schon ; 
ffor he xalle baptyze, as seyth Scryptour, 

That corny th of hem alle everychon© 
In the Holy Goost ! 
He may dampne and he may save, 
Alle goodnesse of hem we have, 
Ther may no man his werkes deprave, 

ffor he is Lorde of myghtes most ? 

Hie accedit Jhesus ad Johannem, quern intuens Jo^ 
hannes dieatj digito demonstrans Jhesum^ ^^ Eece agnus 
Dei qui toUit peccaia mundi V* 

Beholde ! the lombe of God is this, 

That comyth now here beforne ; 
The wich xalle wasche the worlds mys. 

And save alle that that was forlorne : 
This same lombe forsothe it is, 

That of a mayd fuUe clene was borne ; 
ShamfuUe deth this lambe i-wys 

Xalle suffer for us and be alle to-torne. 
And rent on a roode ! 
He xalle suffer for mannys sake 
Lytylle rest, and moche gret sorow and wrake ; 
Hys bake xalle be bowndyn to a stake, 

And betyn owt alle his bloode ! 

Jhesue. John Baptyste, myn owyn good ffrende» 
That ffeythffully dothe preche my wylle ; 

I the thanke with alle my mende, 

ffor that good servyse thou dost me tylle. 



THE BAPTISM OF CHRIST. SOI 

Thy desyre is synne to shende, 

Alle synful lyiF thou woldyst spylle ; 
Thyn entente hath a good hende, 
The lawe of Ood thou dost ffulffylle 
This tyde. 
Baptym to take I come to the, 
And conferme that sacrement that newe xal be, 
In flom Jordon thou baptyze me. 
In watyr that is wyde. 

Johannes. My lorde God, this behovyth me nought. 

With myn hondys to bapty3e the ; 
I xulde rather of the have sought 

Holy baptym, than thou of me. 
Jhesus. Suflyr now, John, my wyl were wrought, 

Alle ryghtffullenes thus ffulfylle we ; 
Me to bapty3e take thou no dowthe, 

The vertu of mekencs here tawthe xal be. 
Every man to lere. 
And take ensawmple here by me. 
How mekely that I come to the, 
Baptym confermyd now xal be, 

Me to bapty3e take thou no dwere. 

Johannes, Alle men may take example, lo ! 

Of lowly mekenes evyn ryght here. 
Be oure Lorde God, that comyth me to, 

Hese pore servaunt and his sutere. 
Every man lere to werke ryght so, 

Bothe kynge and caysere, and grett empere ; 
Be meke and lowe the pore man to. 

And put out pryde in alle manere — 
God dothe here the same ! 
To thi byddynge, my Lord so dere, 
I me obey with gladsum '»^*>»-e, 



202 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And bapty3e the with watyr clere, 

Ever halwyd be thi name ! 

Spiriius Sancius hie descendat super ipsum, et Deus, 
Pater CelestiSf dicet in ccelo^ 

This is my welbelovyd chylde. 

Over whome my spryte doth oversprede ! 
Clene, and pure, and undefylyd. 

Of body, of sowle, ffor thought, for dede ! 
That he is buxhum, meke, and mylde, 

I am wel plesyd withowtyn drede ; 
Wysly to wysse 30W ffrom weys wylde. 

To lysten his lore alle men I rede. 
And ^oure erys to herke. 
Take good heede what he dothe preche, 
And flFblwyth the lawys that he doth teche, 
ffor he xal be 30ur altheris leche, 

To save 30W from develys derke. 

Johannes Baptyst. Here I se with opyn syght, 

The Sone of God that thou erte ! 
The Holy Goost over the doth lyght, 

Tbi faderes voys I here fful smerte. 
The childe of God, as I the plyght. 

That thou be, whilys I am qwerte, 
I xalle wyttnes to every whyght. 

And teche it trewly with alle myn hert ; 
To aese it were grett synne. 
ffor Goddys sone I wurchypp the, 
ffrom hevyn, thin hy3 magest^, 
Thu comyst hedyr ffrom dygnit^, 

Mannys sowle to wynne. 

Jhesus. John Baptyste, thou be wyttnes. 
The trewthe loke that thou nat hyde ; 



THE BAPTISM OF CHRIST. 903 

ffor now I passe forthe into wyldernes, 
The Holy Gost xal be my gyde. 

Hie Jhesui transit in desertumj dicens^ etc. 

In whylsum place of desertnes, 
Xl.** days, a terme ful wyde, 
And ffourty nyghtes^ bothe more and lesse, 
Withowtyn bodyly ffode ther to abyde ; 
fibr man thus do I swynke. 
Into deserte I passe my way, 
ffor mannys sake, as I 30W say, 
XL** nyghtes and xl.^ day, 

I xal nowther ete nor drynke. 

Johan Baptysi. In place where I passe wyttnes I here. 

The trewthe xal I telle wheresoevyr I go. 
That Cryst, the Sone of God, is become oure fere. 

Clad in oure clothynge to sofer for us wo 1 
I bapty3id with myn owjrn handys Cryst Jhesu ryght here, 

And now he is to wyldymes penawns ther to do, 
Informyng so alle us that Lord that hath no pere, 

To do for oure trespace penawnce here also ; 
Of penawnce do I preche. 
In wyttnes ryght be this, 
That what man for his mys. 
Doth penawns here, i-wys, 

His sowle he dothe wel leche. 

Alle men on ground that be 3itt on ly ve, 
ffor 30ur grett offens loke 36 be repentaunt ; 

Of alle 30ur venym synne I rede that 30 30W shryve, 
ffor God is ful redy mercy for to graunt. 

Be contryte for 30ur trespas, and penauns do belyve, 
Reconsyle 30urself and be to God plesaunt ; 

With contryscion, schryffte, and penauns, the devil may 
50 (Iryvo, 



204 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

ffor fro 30ur felachep he xal not be erraunt, 

30W for to meve. 
To penauDs and synne forsake, 
Sbryfte of mowthe loke that 36 make, 
And than the fende in belle so blake, 

He xal 30W nevyr more greve. 

A tre that is bareyn and wyl here no frute. 

The ownere wyl hewe it downe and cast it on the fyre ; 
Ryght so it be man that folwyth the fowle sute 

Of the devyl of belle, and werky th bis desyre* 
God wyl be vengyd on man that is bothe dum and mute, 

That wyl nevyr be shrevy n, but evyr more doth delyre ; 
Clothe the in clennes, with vertu be indute. 

And God with his grace he wyl the sbne inspyre 
To amendynge of thi mys. 
Schryfte of mowthe may best the save, 
Penauns for synne what man wyl have. 
Whan that his body is leyd in grave. 
His sowle xal go to biys. 

Come that is good, men kepe it ful clene ; 

Chaff that is sympyl is sett wul nere at nought. 
So good men of levynge to God chosyn bene. 

Whan synful men be lyke chaff and to helle xul be 
brought. 
Good penauns 30W to preche ful hertyly do I mene, 

Shryffl and satysfaccion evyrmore to have in thought ; 
What man in good penauns and schryfte of mowthe be sene^ 
Of God he is welbelovyd, that alle this worlde hath 
wrought, 

And alle thinge of nowth dede make. 
Now have I tawght 30W good penaims, 
God graunt 30W grace, at his plesauns 
To have of synne dely verauns, 

ffor now my leve I take ! 



XXII. THE TEMPTATION. 



Saihan. Now Belyard and Bel3abub, )e der wurthy 
devele of belle, 
And wysest of councel amonges alle the rowte ! 
Herke now what I sey, a tale I xalle 30W telle. 

That trobely th sore my stomak : therof I have grett dowte. 
Beh/alk. Syr Satbanas, owre sovereyn, syre, with the 
wol we dwelle, 
Alle redy at thi byddynge to the do we lowte ; 
If thou have any nede of oure wyse counselle. 
Telle us now thi qwestyon alle out and oute ; 
Sey al thi dowt be-dene. 
Belsabub. 3a, sere, telle us thi dowte by and by. 
And we xul telle the so sekyrly, 
That thou xalt knowe verryly 

What thi dowte dothe mene. 

Sathan. The dowte that I have it is of Cryst i-wys ; 

Bom he was in Bedleem, as it is seyd. 
And many a man wenyth that Goddes sone he is, 

Born of a woman and she a clene roayd. 
And alle that evyr he prechyth, it is of hevyn blys. 

He wyl lese oure lawe, I am ryght sore afrayd ; 
fiayn wolde I knowe who were ffiidyr his, 

ffor of this grett dowte I am sore dysmayd 
Indede. 
If that he be Goddys childe, 
And bom of a mayd mylde. 



206 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Than be we rygh sore begylde, 

And short xal ben oure spede. 

Therfore, seres, sum what that 36 she we, 

In this grett dowth what is best to do ; 
If he be Goddys sone he wyl brede a shrewe, 

And werke us meche wrake, bothe wreche and woo : 
Sorwe and care he wyl sone strewe, 

Alle oure gode days than xulde sone be goo ; 
And alle oure lore and alle oure lawe he wyl downe hewe, 

And than be we aUe lorn, if that it be soo, 
He wylle don us alle tene. 
He wylle be Lorde over hevyn and helle, 
And fieche awey alle oure catelle, 
Therfor shewe now sum good counselle. 
What comfort may best bene. 

BelyaUe. The best wytt that I kan say, 

Hym to tempte forsothe it is ; 
With sotyl whylys, if that thou may, 

Asay to make hym to don amys. 
If that he synne, this is no nay. 

He may nat be kynge of blys : 
Hym to tempte, go walke thi way, 

flFbr best counselle I trowe be this ; 
Go forthe now and asay ! 
BeUabub. The best wytt I hold it be, 
Hym to tempte in synnys thre. 
The whiche mankende is frelt^ 

Doth ffalle sonest alway. 

Sathan. So afflyr 30ur wytt now wylle I werke, 

I wylle no lengere now here abyde ; 
Be he nevyr so wyse a clerke, 

I xal apposyn hym withinne a tyde. 



THE TEMPTATION. J07 

BeUabub. Now, lovely Lucyfer, in belle so derke, 

Kynge and Lorde of synne and pryde ; 
\^th sum myst his wittys to merke, 
He send the grace to be thi gyde. 

And evyr more be thi spede ! 
Bdyalle. Alle the deveiys, that ben in helle, 
Shul pray to Mahound, as I the telle. 
That thou mayst spede this jumey welle, 
And comforte the in this dede. 

Jhesus. Xl.^ days and xl.*' nyght 

Now have I fastyd for mannys sake ; 
A more grett hungyr had nevyr no wyght. 

Than I myself begynne to take ; 
flfor hungyr in peyn stronge am I pyght, 

And bred have I non myn hungyr for to slake, 
A lytel of a loof relese myn hungyr myght, 

But mursele have I non my comforte for to make ; 
This suffyr I, man, for the. 
ffor thi glotenye and metys wronge, 
I suffyr for the this hungyr stronge, 
I am afferde it wyl be longe 

Or thou do thus for me. 

Sathan. The Sone of God if that thou be, 

Be the grett myght of thi godhede, 
Tume these flyntes, anon lett se, 

ffrom arde stony s to tendyr brede. 
More bettyr it is, as I telle the, 

Wysely to werke aftyr my reed, 
And shewe thi myght of grett majestd, 

Than thorw grett hungyr ffor to be dede. 

These stonys now bred thou make, 
Goddys Sone if that thou be, 
Make these stonys bred, lett se, 



5M)8 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Than mayste thou ete ryght good plenW, 
Thyn hungyr for to slake. 

Jhe9U8. Nott only be bred mannys lyff 3itt stood, 

But in the wurde of God, as I the say, 
To mannys sowle is nevyr mete so good. 

As is the wurd of God that prechid is alway. 
Bred materyal dothe norche blood, 

But to mannys sowle, this is no nay, 
Nevyr more may be a betyr food, 

Than the wurd of God, that lestyth ay. 

To here Goddys wurde therfore man love. 
Thi body doth love materal brede, 
Withoute the wurde of God thi soule is but dede. 
To love prechynge therfore I rede. 

If thou wylt duellyn in blysse above. 

Sathah. ffor no grett hungyr that I kan se. 

In glotony thou wylt not synne ; 
Now to the temple come forthe with me, 

And ther xal I shewe the a praty gynne. 
Up to this pynnacle now go we, 

I xal the sett on the hy3est pynne, 
Ther I preve what that tliou be, 

Or that we tweyn part a twynne, 

I xal knowe what myght thou have. 

Hie ascendU Deua pmnaculum templi, dum diabolus 
dicU quogue seguitur, 

Whan thou art sett upon the pynnacle, 
Thou xalt ther pleyn a qweynt steracle^ 
Or ellys shewe a grett meracle, 

Thysself ffrom hurte thou save. 

Hie Satanas ponit Jhesum stq)er pitmaeulum, dicens, 

Now if thou be Goddys ssone of myght, 
Ryght down to the erthe anon thou ffalle. 



TWt fan B hn]n, thi &ieRs Ulf « 
Tbe Id kepe budie dn ud Bvgixt^ 
Xal be fill redr M tU tiwaOe, 

Hut tfaftl lim DOQ haiv. 
TlMit thou rtiBurlf not ageyn the stoc. 
And hmt tlii fiiteas thoa dost goo, 
Aungdk be red j mile erarrdiao. 
In wejs the to save. 

JhetmM. It is wretjn in hdj book, 

Thi Loffde God thoa joit not temple ; 
AUe thyi^ most obeye to Goddjs look. 

Oat of his m jght is non exempt ; 
Oat of thi carsjdnes and crnel crook. 

By Godys gxace roan xal be redempi : — 
Whan thou to helle, thi brennynge brook. 

To endies peyne xal evyr be dempt, 
Therio alwey to abyde. 
Thi Lorde God thou tempt no more. 
It is nott syttenge to thi lore, 
I bydde the sese anon therfore. 

And tempte God in no tyde. 

Sathan. Ow ! in gloteny nor in veynglory it dothe ryght 
nott avayl 

Cryst for to tempt, it profyteth me ryght nought ; 
I must now begynne to have a newe travayl, — 

In coveiyse to tempt hym it comyth now in my thought, 
ffor if I went thus away and shrynkyd as a snnylo, 

Lorn were the labore alle that I have wrought ; 
Therfore in covetyse cure syre I xal asayle, 



810 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And assay Into that synne yf he may be brought, 

Anon forthe ryght. 
Syr, 3itt onys I pray to the, 
To this hy3 hyl com forthe with me, 
I xal the shewe many a cet^. 

And many a wurthy syght. 

Tunc JAesus tranrit cum diabolo super montem ei dia^ 
bolus diciif 

Into the northe loke fforihe evyn pleyn. 

The towre of Babylony ther mayst thou se ; 
The cet^ of Jerusalem stondyth ther ageyn. 

And evyn ifast therby stondyth Oalyl^. 
Nazareth, Naveme, and the kyngdom of Spayn, 

3abulon, and Neptalym, that is a ryche country. 
Both 3ebee and Sahnana, thou mayst se serteyn, 

Itayl and Archage that wurthy remys be, 
Bothe Jannense and Jurye. 
Rome doth stonde before the ryght. 
The temple of Salamon as sylver bryght. 
And here mayst thou se opynly with syght 
Bothe ffraunce and Normandye. 

Tume the now on this syde and se here Lumbardye, 

Of spycery ther growyth many an c. balys ; 
Archas and Aragon, and grett Almonye, 

Parys and Portyngale, and the towne of Galys : 
Pownteys and Poperynge, and also Pycardye, 

Brlonde, Scottlonde, and the londe of Walys. 
Crete pylis and cctstellys thou mayst se with eye, 

3a, and alle the wyd werde without mo talys, 
Alle this longygh to me. 
If thou wylt knele down to the grownde. 
And wurchepp me now in this stownde. 



THE TEMPTATION. 21 1 

Alle this world, that is so rownd, 
I xal it gyve to the ! 

Jhe$us. Go a bak, thou fowle Sathanas f 

In holy Scrypture wretyn it is, 
Thi Lorde God to wurchipp in every plas, 

As for his thralle and thou servaunt his. 
Saihan. Out, out, harrow ! alas ! alas ! 

I woimdyr sore what is he this ? 
I cannot brynge hym to no trespas, 

Nere be no synne to don amys. 

He byddyth me gon abakke ! , 

What that he is I kannot se, 
Whethyr God or man, what that he be 
I kannot telle in no degrd : 

ifor sorwe I lete a crakke. 

Hie vefiieni angeli canianies et nUnistranies ei: — 
•* Gloria tibi, Domine /" Dicens. 

Jhe9U8. Now, alle mankende, exaumple take 

By these grete werkys that thou dost se, 
How that the devylle of helle so blake 

In synne was besy to tempte me ; 
ffor alle hise maystryes that he dyd make. 

He is overcom and now doth fHe ; 
Alle this I sufiyr ffbr mannys sake, 

To teche the how thou xalt rewle the. 

Whan the devylle dothe the assayle. 
Loke thou concente nevyr to synne. 
For no sleytys, ne for no gynne, 
And than the victory xalt thou wynne. 

The devyl xal lesyn alle his travayl. 

To suffyr temptacion it is grett peyn, 

If thou withstonde it tliou wynnyst grett mede, 

p2 



812 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Of God the more grace thou hast serteyn, 
If thou with-sett the devyl in his dede. 

Thow that the fende tempt the ageyn, 
Of his power take thou no drede ; 

ffor God hath the 30vyn bothe myght and mayn, 
Hym for to with-sytt evyr at nede, 

Thou hast more myght than he. 

Whan the devyl doth tempte the thoo, 

Sbewe thi myght a3en8 thi ffoo. 

Whan thi sowle partyth the froo, 

In blysse than xal it be. Amen f 



XXIII. THE WOMAN TAKEN IN 

ADULTERY. 



Hie de muliere in aduUerio deprehensa. 

Jhegus. Nolo mortem peccatoris ! 

Man for thi synne take repentaunce. 
If thou amende that is amys. 

Than hevyn xal be thin herytaunce ; 
Thow thou have don a3en8 God grevauns, 

3ett mercy to haske loke thou be bolde, 
His mercy doth passe in trewe balauns, 

AUe cruel jugemeut be many folde. 

Thow that 30ur synnys be nevyr so grett, 

ffor hem be sad and aske mercy ; 
Sone of my fiadyr grace 36 may gett. 

With the leste teer wepynge owte of 30ur ey. 
My ffadyr me sent the, man, to bye, 

AUe thi raunsom mysylfe must pay ; 
ffor love of the mysylfe wyl dye. 

Iff thou aske mercy, I sey nevyr nay. 

Into the erthe ffrom hevyn above, 
Thi sorwe to sese and joy to restore, 

Man, I cam down, alle ffor thi love, — 
Love me ageyn, I aske no more ! 

Thow thou myshappe and synne ful sore, 
3 it turne a3en and mercy crave ; 



214 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

It is thi fieiwte and thou be lore, 

Haske thou mercy and thou xalt have. 

Uppon thi neybore be not vengabyl, 

Ageyn the la we if he offende 5 
Lyke as he is, thou art unstabyl, 

Thyn owyn frelt^ evyr thou attende. 
Evermore thi neybore helpe to amende, 

Evyn as thou woldyst he xulde the ; 
Ageyn hym wrathe if thou accende, 

The same in happ wylle falle on the. 

Eche man to othyr be mercyable, 

And mercy he xal have at nede ; 
What man of mercy is not tretable. 

Whan he askythe mercy he xal not spede. 
Mercy to graunt I com indede 5 

Whoso aske mercy he xal have grace ; 
Lett no man dowte for his.mysdede. 

But evyr aske mercy, whyl he hath space. 

Scriba. Alas ! Alas ! oure lawe is lorn ! 

A ! fals ypocryte, Jhesu be name. 
That of a sheppherdis dowtyr was bom, 

Wyl breke oure lawe and make it lame. 
He wyl us werke ryght mekyl shame. 

His fals purpos if he upholde ; 
Alle oure lawys he dothe defame. 

That stynkynge beggere is woundyr bolde. 

Phariseus. Sere scrybe, in feyth that ypocryte 
Wyl turue this londe al to his lore ; 

Therfore I councelie hym to indyte. 
And chastyse hym ryght wel therfore. 



THE WOMAN TAKEN IN ADULTERY. Z15 

Scriba. On hym beleve many a score^ 

In his precbynge he is so gay ; 
Eche man liym ffolwygh ever more and more^ 

A3ens that he seyth no man seyth nay. 

Phariseui. A ffals qwarel if we cowde feyne. 

That ypocrite to putt3rn in blame ; 
Alle his precbynge xulde sone disteyne. 

And than his wurchepp xuld tume to shame. 
With sum falshede to spyllyn his name 

Lett us assay, his lore to spylle ; 
The pepyl with hym yflF we cowde grame. 

Than xulde we sone have al oure wylle. 

Accuiaiar. Herke, sere pharysew, and sere scrybe, 

A ryght good sporte I kan 30W telle, 
I undyrtake that ryght a good brybe 

We alle xul have to kepe councelle. 
A fayre 3onge qwene here by doth dwelle, 

Bothe iFresche and gay upon to loke. 
And a talle man with her dothe melle,— 

The wey into hyr chawmere ryght evyn he toke. 

Lett us thre now go streyte thedyr. 

The wey fful evyn I xalle 30W lede j 
And we xul take them bothe togedyr, 

Whylle that thei do that synful dede. 
Scriba. Art thou sekyr that we xal spede ? 

Sballe we hym fynde whan we cum there ? 
Accusator. Be my trowthe I have no drede, 

The hare fro the fforme we xal arere. 

Phariseus. We xal have game and this be trewe ! 

Lete us thre werke by on assent. 
We wyl here brynge evyn beforn Jhesu, 

And of here lyff the truthe present ; 



216 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

• 

How in advowtrye hyre lyff is lent ; 

Than hym beforn whan she is browth. 
We xul hym aske the trew jugement. 

What lawful deth to here is wrouthe ? 

Of grace and mercy hevyr he dothe preche. 

And that no man xulde be vengeable ; 
Ageyn the woman if he sey wreche. 

Than of his precliynge he is unstabyl ; 
And if we fynde hym varyable 

Of his prechynge that he hath tawth. 
Than have we cawse, bothe juste and able, 

ffor a ftds man that he be cawth. 

Scriba. Now, be grete Grod, 3e sey fful welle : 

If we hym fyndyn in varyaunce. 
We have good reson, as 30 do telle^ 

Hym for to brynge to foule myschauns. 
If he holde stylle his dalyauns, 

And preche of mercy hire for to save ; 
Than have we mater of gret substauns, 

Hym for to kylle and putt in grave. 

Grett reson why I xal 30W telle ; 

ffor Moyses dothe bydde in oure lawe, 
That every advowterere we xuld qwelle. 

And 3itt with stonys thei xulde be slawe ; 
Ageyn Moyses if that he drawe. 

That synful woman with grace to helpe, * 
He xal nevyr skape out of oure awe, 

But he xal dye lyke a dogge whelpe. 

Accusator. 3e tary ovyr longe, seres, I sey 30W, 
They wyl sone parte, as that I gesse \ 

Therfore if 36 wyl have 30ur pray now, 
Lete us go take them in here whantownnesse. 



THE WOMAN TAKEN IN ADULTERY. 817 

Pkariseui, 600 thou beforn the wey to dresse. 

We xal the ffolwe within short whyle ; 
Iff that we may that quene dystresse, 

I hope we xal Jhesu begyle. 

Scriba. Breke up the dore, and go we inne, 

Sett to the shuldyr with alle thi myght ; 
We xal hem take evyn in here synne. 

Here owyn trespas shal them indite. 

Hicjuvenis qiddam extra currii indeploydo, calligia non 

UgatiSj et braccas in tnanu tenens, ei dicit accusator^ 

» 

Accusator. Stow that harlot sum erthely wyght, 

That in advowtrye here is ffownde. 
Juvenis. yiS any man stow me tliis nyth^ 

I xal hym 3eve a dedly wownde. 
If any man my wey doth stoppe 

Or we departe, ded xal I be ; 
I xal this daggare putt in his croppe, 

I xal hem kylle or he xal me. 

Pharisetis, Grett Goddys curse mut go with the. 

With suche a shrewe wylle I not melle. 
Juvenis. That same blyssynge I 3yff 30W thre. 

And qwhethe 30W alle to the devyl of helle ; 
In feyth I was so sore afiFrayd 

Of 3one thre shrewys, the sothe to say. 
My breche be nott 3ett welle up teyd, 

I had such hast to renne away : 
Thei xal nevyr cacche me in suche affray, — 

I am fulle glad that I am gon. 
Adewe ! adewe ! a xx". devyl way, 

And Goddys curse have 3e everychon. 

Scriba. Come forthe, thou stotte ! com forthe, thou scowte ! 
Come forthe, thou bysmare and brothel bolde ! 



S18 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Come ffortlie, thou bore, and stynkynge byche clowte ! 

How longe bast thou suche harlotry holde ? 
Phariseus.Come forth, thou queue ! come forthe,thou scolde ! 

Com forth, thou sloveyn ! com forthe, thou slutte ! 
We xal the teche with carys colde, 

A lytyl bettyr to kepe thi kutte. 

Muh/er. A ! mercy, mercy, seres, I 30W pray, 

ffor Goddys love have mercy on me ! 
Of my myslevynge me not bewray. 

Have mercy on me, for charyt^ ! 
Accusaior. Aske jis no mercy, it xal not be ; 

We xul so ordeyn ffor thi lot. 
That thou xalt dye ffor thin advowtrye ; 

Therfore come forthe, thou stynkynge stott ! 

Mtdier. Seres, my wurchepp if 3e wyl save. 

And helpe I have non opyn shame ; 
Bothe gold and sylvyr 3e xul have. 

So that in clennes 3e kepe my name. 
Scriba. Mede ffor to take, we were to blame. 

To save suche stottys, it xal not be; 
We xal brynge the to such a game. 

That alle advowtereres xul lem be the. 

Mulier. Stondynge 3e wyl not graunt me grace. 

But for my synne that I xal dye ; 
I pray 30W kylle me here in this place. 

And lete not the pepyl upon me crye. 
If I be sclaundryd opynly, 

To alle my frendys it xal be shame : 
I pray 30W kylle me prevyly, 

Lete not the pepyl knowe my defame ! 

FharUeus. ffy on the, scowte ! the devyl the qwelle ! 
Ageyn the lawe xul we the kylle ? 



THE WOMAN TAKEN IN ADULTERY. 219 

ffyrst zal hange the the devyl of helle, 

Or we suche fblyes xulde ffulfylle ; 
Thow it lyke the nevyr so ille, 

Befforn the prophete thou xalt have lawe, 
Lyke as Moyses doth charge us tylle. 

With grett stonys thou xalt be slawe. 

Aeeu9(Uor. Com forthe apase^ thou stynkynge soowte ! 

Before the prophete thou were this day ; 
Or I xal 3eve the suche a clowte, 

That thou xalt falle downe evyn in the way. 
Scriba. Now, be grett God ! and I the pay, 

Suche a buffett I xal the take. 
That alle the tethe, I dare wel say, 

Withinne thin heed ffbr who xul shake. 

Phariseus. Herke, sere prophete, we alle 30W pray 
To gyff trewe dome and just sentence 

Upon this woman, whiche this same day 
In synfulle advowtery hath don offense. 

Hie JhesuSy dum isli accusant muUeremj continue debet 
digito mo scribere in terra, 

Accuiotor. Se, we have brought here to 30ur presens, 

Becawse 36 ben a wys prophete. 
That 36 xal telle be consyens, 

What dethe to hyre 36 thynke most mete. 

Scriba. In Moyses la we ryght thus we fynde. 

That suche fals lovers xul be slayn, 
Streyte to a stake we xul hem bynde. 

And with grett stonys brest out ther brayn. 
Of 30ur concyens telle us the playn. 

With this woman what xal be wrought ; 
Shalle we lete here go qwyte agayn. 

Or to hire dethe xal she be brought ? 



220 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Jhetu tuchU respondiiy sed semper icrybyt m ierra^ 
Mulier. Now, holy prophete, be mercyable ! 

Upon me, wrecche, take no vengeaunce ! 
ffor my synnys abhomynable. 

In hert I have grett repentaunce. 
I am wel wurthy to have myschaunce, 

Bothe bodyly dethe and werdly shame ; 
But gracyous prophete of socurramicey 

This tyme pray 30W for Goddys name. 

Phariseus. Ageyn the lawe thou dedyst oflens^ 

Therfore of grace speke thou no more ; 
As Moyses gevyth in law sentens. 

Thou xalt be stonyd to deth therfore. 
Accusator* Ha don, sere prophete, telle us 30ure lore ; 

Xul we this woman with stonys kylle ? 
Or to hire hous hire home restore ? 

In this mater telle us 30ur wylle. 

Scriba. In a colde stodye me thynkyth 30 sytt ; 

Grood sere, awake, telle us 3 our thought: 
Xal she be stonyd? telle us 3our wytt, — 

Or in what rewle xal sche be brought ? 
Jhemu, Loke whiche of 30W that nevyr synne wrought, 

But is of lyff clennere than she. 
Cast at here stonys, and spare here nowght, 

Clene out of synne if that 3e be. 

Hie Jhesua iierum se incUnans scribet in terra^ et omnes 
accusatores quasi confusi separatim in tribus hcis se diS'- 
jungent. 

Plwriseus. Alas ! alas ! I am ashamyd ! 

I am afferde that I xal deye ; 
Alle myn synnys evyn propyrly namyd 

3on prophete dede wryte befor myn eye. 



THE WOMAN TAKEN IN ADULTERY. 221 

Iff that my felawys that dude aspye. 
They wylle telle it bothe ffer and wyde ; 

My Bunfolle levynge if thei out crye, 
I wot oevyr wher myn heed to hyde. 

AccumUor. Alas ! for sorwe myn herte doth blede, 

Alle myn synnys 3on man dude wryte ; 
If that my felawys to them toke hede. 

I kannot me ffrom deth acquyte. 
I wold I wore hyd sumwhere out of syght. 

That men xuld me no where se ne knowe ; 
Iff I be take I am afflyght 

In mekyl shame I xal be throwe. 

Scriba. Alas ! the tyme that this betyd, 

Byght byttyr care doth me embrace ! 
Alle my synnys be now unhyd, 

3on man befor me hem alle doth trac4). 
If I were onys out of tliis place. 

To suffyr deth gret and vengeauns able ; 
I wyl nevyr come befor his face, 

Thow I xulde dye in a stable. 

MuUer. Thow I be wurthy ffor my trespas 

To suffyr dethe abhomynable, 
3itt, holy prophete, of 30ur hy3 grace 

In 30ur jugement be mercyable. 
I wyl nevyr more be so unstable, 

O, holy prophete ! graunt me mercy ! 
Of my synnys unresonable, 

With alle myn hert I am scry. 

Jhestis, Where be thi fomen that dude the accuse ? 

Why have thei lefte us to alone ? 
Mulier. Bycawse they cowde nat hemself excuse, 

With shame they filed hens everychone ; 



222 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

But, gracyous prophete, lyst to my mone ! 

Of my sorwe take compassyon ! 
Now alle myn enmyes hens be gone, 

Sey me sum wurde of consolacion. 
Jhesus. ffor tho synnys that thou hast wrought, 

Hath any man condempnyd the ? 
Midier. Nay forsothe that hathe ther nought, 

Butt in 30ur grace I putt me. 
Jhesus, ffor me thou xalt nat condempnyd be ; 

Go horn ageyn and walke at large : 
Loke that thou leve in honest^. 

And wyl no more to synne, I the charge. 
Mulier. I thanke 30W hy3ly, holy prophete. 

Of this grett grace 3e have me graunt ; 
Alle my lewde lyff I xal doun lete. 

And ffonde to be Groddys trewe servaunt. 
Jhema. What man of sjmne be repentaunt, 

Of Grod if he wyl mercy crave, 
God of mercy is so habundawnt, 

That what man haske it he xal it have. 

Whan man is contrite, and hath wonne grace, 

God wele not kepe olde wrethe in mynde, 
But bettyr love to hem he has. 

Very contryte whan he them fynde. 
Now God, that dyed ffor alle mankende, 

Save alle these pepyl, both nyght and day ! 
And of oure synnys he us unbynde, 

Hy3e Lorde of hevyn, that best may ! Amen. 



XXIV. LAZARUS. 



Hie mcipU de susciiatione La^ari, 

La}arus. God, that alle thynge dede make of nowth. 

And puttyst eche creature to his fenaunce. 
Save thyn handwerke that thou hast wrought. 

As thou art lord of hi} substauns ! 
O, gracyous God ! att thi plesauns, 

Of my dysese now comforte me, 
Whiche thorowe syknes hath suche penawnce. 

On ethys ffor heed-ache may I now se. 

Systyr Martha and Mawdelyn eke, 

What hast helpe me in bedde to dresse ; 
iFor trewly I am so woundyrly seke, 

I may nevyr schape this grett seknes. 
My deth is com now I gesse. 

Help into chawmere that I be led, 
My grett desesse I hope xal lesse, 

If I were leyd upon a bed. 

Martha. La3arus, brother, be of good cher, 

I hope 30ur syknes ryght wel xal slake ; 
Upon this bed rest 30 w rygh here, 

And a good slep assay to take. 
Magdalyn. Now, jentyl brothyr, ffor Goddys sake 

Lyfte up 30wre herte and be not feynt 5 
An hevy householde with us 3e make, 

If dedly syknes have 30W ateynt. 



224 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

La}arus, fforsothe, dere systeryn, I may not slepe. 

My syknes so sore dothe evyr encrese ; 
Of me I pray 30W take ryght good kepe, 

Tyll that my peyne begynne relese. 
Martha. God graunt grace that it may sese, 

Of syknes God make 30W sownde ; 
Or ellys oure joy wylle sone dyscres, 

In so grett peynes if 3e ly bownde. 

Mafidalyn. A ! brothir, brothir, lyfte up 3 oure herte, 

36UT hevy cher doth us grevaunce ; 
If deth from us 30W xulde departe. 

Than were we brought in comberaunce. 
36 be oure brothyr syb of alyaunce. 

If 30 wore deedy than had we none ; 
36 do us brynge in distemperaunce. 

Whan 36 us telle 36 xal hens gone. 

Primus consolator. Dame Martha and Magdalyne, 

How far3rth 30ur brothir ? lete us hym se. 
Martha. He is ryght seke and hath grett pyne, 

I am aferde deed he xal be. 
Magdalyn, A man may have ryght grett pete, 

The fervent hete of hym to fele. 
Secundus consolator. Take 36 no thought in no degr^, 

I hope that he xal ffare fful wele. 

Martha* He may nat leve, his colowre doth chaunge^ 

Come to his bed, 30 xal hym se. 
Magdalyn. Iff he longe leve, it wyl be straunge. 

But as God wole, so mut it be ; 
Chere hym, gode frendys, ffor charyt^, 

Comforte of hym we kan non gete. 
Alas ! alas ! what eylight me, 

Myne herte for wo is wundyr grete. 



LAZARUS. S25 

Tertius cansolaior. Ah, beyl ! syr La3aru8,how do 36 &re ? 

How do 36 ffele 30W in 30ur herte ? 
Lazarus. I am with syknes alle woundyn in care. 

And loke whan deth me xulde departe. 
Quarius consolator et nuncius, 36 xal have hele and leve 
in qwart, 

If 3e wol take to 30W good chere. 
Lazarus, Whan deth on me hath shet his dart, 

I xal have hele and ly on here. 

Primus consolator. Be of good comforte and thynke not so, 

Put out of herte that idyl thought ; 
30ure owyn mysdemynge may werke 30W wo. 

And cause 30W sonere to dethe be brought. 
Secundus consolator. With gret syknes thow 30 be sought, 

Upon 30uresylf have no mystruste ; 
If that 3e have, I wundyr ryght nought, 

Tfaow 36 be deed and cast in duste. 

Tertius consolator. Many on hathe had ryght grett 
syknesse. 

And aftyr hath had his hele ageyn ; 
And many a man, this is no lesse, 

With his wantruste hymsylf hathe slajm. 
3e be a man of ryght sad brayn, 

Thow that 30ur syknes greve 30W ryght ille,— 
Pluk up 30ur herte with myght and mayn. 

And chere 3our8ylf with alle 3 our wylle. 

Lazarus. Ageyn my syknes ther is non ese, 

But Jhesu Cryst, my maystyr dere. 
If that he wyst of my dyssese, 

Ryght sone I trust he wolde ben here. 
Quarius consolator. I xal go to hym withoutyn dwere, 

And of 3our syknes telle hym serteyne ; 

a 



886 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Loke that 36 be of ryght good chere, 
Whylle that I go and com ageyn. 

Martha. Now, jentyl ffrend, telle hym ryght thus, 

He that he lovyth hath grett syknes, 
Hedyr to come and comforte us, 

Say that we prayd hym of his goodnes. 
Magdalyn. Recomende us onto his hy3ne8. 

And telle hym alle oure hertys wo ; 
But he comforte oure hevynes, 

Oure werdly joy awey wyl go. 

Quartus consolaior et nuncius. The trewthe £Porsothe alle 
every dele, 

As ye have told, so xal I say ; 
Go to 30ur broythyr and cheryse hym wele, 

ffor I walke fibrthe streyte in my way. 
Martha. What chere, good brothyr ? telle me I pray ; 

What wele 30 ete ? what wele 36 drynk ? 
Loke what is plesynge to 30ur pay ; — 

30 xal have what 3e wole thynke. 

Layarus. My wynde is stoppyd, gon is my brethe,-^ 

And dethe is come to make myn ende ; 
To God in hevyn my sowle I qwethe,— 

ffarwelle, systeryn, for hens I wende. 

Hie Lazarus moritur^ etc. 

Magdalyn. Alas ! ffor wo myn here I rende, 
Myn owyn dere brothyr ly th here now ded ; 

Now have we lost a trusty ffrende, — 
The sybbest blood of oure kynreed 1 

Martha. Alas I alas ! and weleway I 
Now be we tweyn bothe brothyrlet-1 



LAZARUS. 227 

ffoT wbo my hert is colde as clay ; 

A ! hoo xal comforte oure carefulnes ? 
Ther had nevyr woman more doolfulnes ; 

A ! systyr Magdalyn, what is 3 our reed ? 
What whith may helpe oure hevynes, 

Now that oure brother is gon and deed ? 

Magdab/n. Alas I dere systyr, I cannot telle ; 

The best comforte that I can sey, 
But sum man do us sle and qwelle, 

Lete us ly down by hym and dey. 
Alas ! why went he alone awey ? 

If we had deyd with hym also, 
Than had oure care alle turnyd to pley, 

Ther now alle joye is turnyd to woo. 

Primus coMolaior. Be ^f good comforte and thank God 
of aly 

ffor dethe is dew to every man ; 
What tyme that deth on us xal ffal, 

Non erthely wyght the oure telle can. 
Martha, We alle xul dye, that is sertan, 

But 3 it the blood of kynde nature. 
When dethe the brothyr awey hath tan. 

Must nedys mume that sepulture. 

Secundus comolaior. Good fFrendys, I pray 30W holde 
3 our pes, 

Alle 30ur wepynge moy not amende itt ; 
Of 30ur sorwinge therfore now ses. 

And helpe he were buryed in a cley pitt. 
Magdalyn. Alas ! that wurde myn herte doth slytt. 

That he must now in cley be grave ; 
I wolde sum man my throte wulde kytt. 

That I with hym myght lyne in cave. 

q8 



2^ COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Tertius consolator. Bothe heed and ffoot now he is wouDde» 

In a schete bothe fiayr and clene, 
Lete us here hym strey te to that grounde. 

Where that ^e thynke his grave xal bene. 
Martha. We be ffulle lothe that pytt to sen ; 

But stondynge it may no bettyr be, 
The coors take up 30W thre betwen, 

With carefuUe herte 30W ffolwe xal we. 

HicporiavU corpus ad sepelliendum. 

Magdaleyn. Alas ! comforte I se non othyr, 

But alle of sorwe, and care, and woo ; 
We dulfulle women must burry oure brothir, 

Alas ! that deth me wyl not slo. 
If I to pitt with hym myght go, 

Therin evyrmore with hym to abyde, 
Than were my care alle went me fro, 

Ther now grett sorwe doth wounde me wyde. 

Primus consolator. This coors we burry here in this pytte, 

AUemyghty God the sowle mut have ; 
And with this ston this grave we shytte, 

ffro ravenous bestes the body to save. 
Magdcdyn, He is now brought into his cave, 

Myn hert ffor woo this syght doth kylle ; 
Lete us sytt down here by the grave. 

Or we go hens wepe alle oure ffylle. 

Martha, Us for to wepe no man may lett, 

Befom oure face to se this syght. 
Alas ! qwhy doth deth us not fett. 

Us for to brynge to this same plyght ? 
Secundus consolator. Arys, for shame, 3e do not ryght, 

Streyth from tliis grave he xul go hens. 
Thus for to grugge ageyns Godys myght, 

A^ens hy) God 36 do oiTens. 



LAZARUS. 2S9 

Magdalen. Syth I must nedys with 30W hens gon^ 

My brotheres grave lete me fyrst kys ; 
Alas ! no whith may helpe my mon, 

fiarewel, my brother ! farewel, my blys ! 
Tertius consolaior. Horn to 30ur place we xal 30W wysse, 

ffbr Goddys love be of good chere ; 
Indede 30 do ryght sore amys. 

So sore to wepe, as 3e do here. 

Martha. Lete us go hom than to oure place. 

We pray 30W alle with us to abyde ; 
Us to comforte with sum solace, 

Tyl that oure sorwe doth slake and sclyde. 
Primus consolaior. 30W for to comforte at every tyde, 

We xalle dwelle here bothe nyght and day, 
And God that made this werd so wyde, 

Be 30wre comforte, that best may. 

Hie quartus consolaior ei nuncius loquitur Jhesu dicens, 

Quartus consolaior. Heyl, holy prophete, Jhesu by name ! 

Martha and Mawdelyn, tho systeryn too, 
Recommende hem to 30ur hy3 fame, 

And bad me sey to 30W thus, loo ! 
How that Lazarus, qwhiche that 30 lovyd so^ 

With grett syknes is sore dyssesyd ; 
To hym they prayd 30W that 3e wolde goo, 

If that 30ur hy3ne8 therwith were plesyd. 

Jhesus. Dedly syknes La3arus hath non. 

But for to shewe Goddys grete glorye ; 
ffor that syknes is ordeynyd alon, 

The sone of God to glory fie. 
Nuncius. They be in dowte that he xal deye, 

Grett syknes hym sore doth holde ; 



280 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

ffor vervent hete his blood dotbe dreye, 
His colore chaungyth, as they me tolde. 

Jhe8U8. 600 horn ageyn, and telle hem thus, 

I xal c(mie to hem whan that I may. 
Nuncius. At 30ur oomaundement, O prophete Jbesus ! 

I xal hem telle, as 36 do say. 
Jhe9U8. Com forthe, bretheryn, wcdke we oure way, 

Into Jurye go we anon ; 
I cam not there ful many a day, 

Therfore thedyr now wyl I gon. 

Omnes disdpuU, The Jewys ageyn the were grym and 
grylle. 

Whan thou were there wolde the a slayn ; 
With stonys they sowte the ffor to kylle. 

And wylt thou now go thedyr ageyn. 
Jhesiu. Xij. owrys the day hathe in certeyn. 

In them to walke bothe clere and bryght ; 
He xal not stomble ageyn hylle nor pleyn. 

That goth the wey whyl it is day lyght. 

But if men walke whan it is nyght, 

Sone they offende in that dyrknes, 
Becawse they may have no cler syght, 

They hurte there ffete ofte in suche myrkenes. 
But as ffor this, 3itt nevyrthelesse. 

The cawse therfore I thedyr wyl wende. 
Is ffor to reyse, ffirom bedde expresse, 

La3arus that slepyth, oure althere ffrende. 

Omne$ discipuli. Of his syknes he xal be save. 

If that he slepe, good sygne it is. 
Jhesui. La3arus is deed and leyd in grave. 

Of his slepynge 36 deme amys ; 



LAZARUS. S81 

I was not there, 30 knew weyl this, 

To strengthe 30ure feyth I am ful glad. 
Therfore I telle 30W the trewthe i-wys, 

Oure ffrende is deed and undyr erthe clad. 

Thomas. Than goo we alle ryght evyn streyth ihedyr, 

There a»oure ffrende La3arus is deed ; 
And lete us deye with hym togedyr, 

Ther as he lyth in the same stede. 
Jhe9U8. The ffbr to deye have thou no drede, 

The wey streyth thedyr in hast we take ; 
Be the grett myght of myn Godhede, 

Oute of his slepe he xal awake. 

Nuncitia. Alle heyl ! Martha and Mawdelyn eke, 

To Jhesu I have 30ur massage seyd, 
I tolde hym how that 3 our hrothyr was seke, 

And with grett peyn in his bed leyd. 
He bad 3e xulde not be dysmayde, 

Alle his syknes he xal askape ; 
He wylle byn here within a brayde, 

AlB he me tolde, he comyth in rape. 

Mawdelyn, That holy prophete doth come to late, 

Oure brothyr is beryed iij. days or this ; 
A grett stone stoppyth the pyttys gate. 

There as oure brothere beryde is. 
Nuncius, Is La3arus deed? now Grod his sowle blys! 

3it loke 3e take non hevynes. 
So longe to wepe 3e don amys, 

It may not helpe 30ur sorynes. 

Martha, Oute of myn herte alle care to lete, 
Alle sorwe and wo to caste away, 



SS2 COVENTBT MYSTERIES. 

I xal go forthe in the strete 

To mete with Jhesu, if that I may. 
Secundus consolatar. God be 30ur spede bothe eryr and ay, 

ffor with your sustyr we wyl abyde; 
Here to comforte we xal asay. 

And alle here care to caste asyde. 

Tertius consolator. Mary Mawdelyn^ be of good herte. 

And wel bethynke ym in 30ur mynde, 
Bche creature hens must depart, 

Ther is no man but hens must w^ide ! 
Deih to no wyht can be a frende, 

Alle thinge to erthe he wyl downe cast ; 
Whan that God wol alle thynge hath ende, 

Lengere than hym lyst nothynge may last. 

Magddbffu I thanke 30W, frendys, ffor ^our good chere, 

Myn hed doth ake, as it xulde brest ; 
I pray 30W, therfore, while 3e ben here, 

A lytil whyle that I may rest. 
Qfiortus consolator nuncius. That Lord that made bothe 
est and west, % 

Graunt 30W good grace suche rest to take, 
That onto hym xulde plese most best, 

As he this worlde of nought dyd make ! 

Martha. A ! gracyous Lord, had 3e ben here. 

My brother Lazarus this tyme had lyvyd ; 
But iiij. day3 gon upon a here 

We dede hym berye whan he was ded. 
3itt now I knowe withowtyn drede, 

What thynge of God that thou do crave. 
Thou xalt spede of the hy3 Godheede, 

What so thou aske thou xalt it have. 



LAZARUS. 238 

Jheius. Thy brothyr Lazarus a3en xal ryse, 

A levynge man a3en to be. 
Martha. I woot wel that at the grett last syse. 

He xal aryse and also we. 
Jhesu8. Besorreccion thou mast me se. 

And heudeles lyff I am also ; 
What man that deyth and levyth in me, 

ffrom deth to ly ve he xal ageyn go. 

Eche man in me that feytheful is. 

And ledyth his lyff ailere my lore. 
Of hendeles lyff may he nevyr mys, 

Evere he xal leve and deye nevyr more. 
The body and sowle I xal restore 

To endeles joye, dost thou trowe this? 
Martha. I hope in the, O Cryst ! ful sore, 

Thou art the Sone of Grod in blys ! 

Thy ffadyr is God of lyff endeles, 

Thiself is Sone of lyff and gras ; 
To sese these wordlys wrecchydnes, 

ffrom hefne to erth ethou toke the pas. 
Jhems. Of hevynly myght ryght grett solas. 

To alle this world me xul sone se ; 
Go, calle thi systyr into this plas, 

Byd Mary Mawdelyn come hedyr to me. 

Martha. At thi byddyng I xalle here calle. 

In hast we were here 30W befom. 
Mawdelyn. Alas ! my mowthe is byttyr as galle, 

Grett sorwyn my herte on tweyn hath scome ; 
Now that my brothyr from syth is lorn, 

Ther may no myrthe my care releve. 
Alas, the tyme that I was borne ! 

The swerde of sorwe myn hert doth cleve. 



284 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Primus consolator. fibr his dere love that alle that 
wrought, 

Ses sumtyme of 30ur wepynge, 
And putt alle thynge out of thought, 

Into this care that 30W doth brynge. 
Secundua consolator. 3e]do 30urself ryght grett hyndrynge. 

And short 30ure lyff or 39 beware ; 
ffor Goddys love, ses of 30ur sorwynge, 

And with good wysdam refreyn 30ur care. 

Martha. Sustyr Magdalen, come out of halle. 

Our maystyr is com, as I 30W say ; 
He sent me hedyr 30W for to calle. 

Come forthe in hast, as I 30W pray. 
Magdalen. Ha ! where hath he ben many a longe day ? 

Alas ! why cam he no sonere hedyr ? 
In hast I folwe 30W anon the way. 

Me thynkyth longe or I come thedyr. 

Tertius consolator. Herke, gode ffrendys, I 30W pray, 

Aftyr this woman in hast we wende ; 
I am aferde ryght m good fay, 

Hereself for sorwe that she wyl shende. 
Nundus. Here brothyr so sore is in hire mende, 

She may not ete, drynke, nor slepe ; 
Streyte to his grave she goth on ende. 

As a mad woman, ther for to wepe. 

• 

Magdalen. A ! sovereyn Lord, and mayster dere 1 

Had 3e with us ben in presens. 
Than had my brother on lyve ben here, 

Nat ded but qwyk, that now is hens. 
Ageyn deth is no resystens, 

Alas ! myn hert is woundyrly wo. 



LAZABU& SS5 

Whan that I thynke of his absens. 
That 36 }0ur8elf in herte lovyd so. 

Primus cansokUor. Whan we have mynd of his sore dethe, 

He was to us so gentyl and good. 
That mend of hym oure hertes sleth. 

The losse of hym doth marre oure mood. 
Secundus cansolaior. Be bettyr neybore nevyr man stood. 

To every man he was ryght hende $ 
Us he dede refresche with drynk and food. 

Now he is gon, gon is oure frende ! 

Jhesus. 30wre grett wepynge doth me constreyne 

fipbr my good ffrend to wepe also ; 
I cannot me for wo restreyn, 

But I must wepe lyke as 3e do. 

Hie Jhesus fingit se lacrimari* 

Tertius consolcUor. Beholde this prophete, how he doth 
wepe lo ! ^ 

He lovyd Lazarus ryght woundyrly sore, 
He wolde not ellys for hym thus wepe so, 

But if that his love on hym were the more. 

fiundus. A straw for thi t^le, what nedyth hym to wepe ? 

A man born blynde dyde he nat 39 ve syght? 
Myght he not thanne his frende on lyve kepe. 

Be the vertu of that same hy3 myght ? 
Jhesus. Where is he put ? telle me anon ryght ; 

Brynge me the weye streyth to his grave. 
Martha, Lord ! at 30ur wylle we xal brynge 30W tyght, 

Evyn to that place ther he doth lyve in cave. 

Magdalyn. Whan that we had the massangere sent. 
Or he had fullyche half a myle gon, 



886 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Deyd my brother, and up we hym hent, 

Here in this grave we beryed hym anon. 
Jhesus. The myght of the Godhed xal gladd }ow everychon, 

Suche syght xal he se hens or 3e wende ; 
Sett to 30ur handys, take of the ston, 

A syght lete me have of La3arus my ffrende. 

Martha. He stynkygh ryght fowle longe tyme or this, 

liij. days gon forsothe he was dede. 
Lete hym ly stylle ryght evyn as he is. 

The stynke of his careyn myght hurte us I drede. 
Jhuus. As I have the tolde, syght of the Godhede 

Thyself xuldyst have, feythful if thou be ; 
Take of the ston, do aftyr my rede, 

The glorye of the Godhede anon 3e xal se. 

Prknus canaolator. 30ure byddynge xal be done a ful 
swyfte. 

Sett to 30ur handys and helpe echone ; 
I pray 30W, serel^ help me to lyfte, 

I may not reyse it myself alon. 
Secundus consolator. In feyth it is an holy ston, 

Ryth sad of weyth and hevy of peys. 
Tertius consolaior. Thow it were twyes so hevy as on, 

Undyr us foure wo xal it reyse. 

Nuncius. Now is the ston take ffrom the cave. 

Here may men se a rewly sygth 
Of this ded body that ly th here in grave, 

Wrappyd in a petefful plyght. 

Jhesus elevatis ad caelum oaUis, dicii, 

I thanke the, Fadyr, of thin hy3 myght. 
That thou hast herd my prayour this day ; 



LAZARUS. S87 

I know ful wel, bothe day and nyght, 
Ever thou dost graunt that I do say. 

But for this pepyl that stondyth about. 
And beleve not the power of the and me ; 

Them for to brynge clene out of dowt. 
This day oure myght they alle xul se. 

Hie Jhesus clamai voce magnaj dicenty 

La3aru8 ! La3arus ! my frende so fre 1 

ffrom that depe pitt come out anon I 
Be the grett myght of the hy3 magest^^ 

Alyve thou xalt on erthe ageyn gon. 

Lazarus. At 30ure comaundement I ryse up ful ryght, 
Heyn, helle, and erthe 30ure byddyng must obeye ; 

ffor 3e be God and man^ and Lord of most myght. 
Of lyff and of deth 3e have bothe lok and keye. 

Hie resurget Lazarus ligatis manibus et pedibus ad 
fnodum Mqmltvriy et dieit Jhesus, 

Jhesus, Goo forthe, bretheryn, and La3arus 3e untey. 
And alle his bondys losyth hym asundyr ; 

Late hym walke hom with 30W in the wey, 

Ageyn Godes myght this meracle is now undyr. 

Peirtis, At 30ur byddynge his bondys we unbynde, 

Alle thynge muste lowte unto 30ur magest^ ! 
Be this grett meracle opynly we fynde, 

Very God and man in trewthe that 3e be. 
Johanne$. That thou art very God every man may se, 

Be this meracle so grett and so mervaylle ; 
Alle thynge undyr hevyn must nedys obeye the,— 

Wlian a3ens the thowh deth be, he may not prevaylle. 



288 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Omnes Consolatores. We allewith o voys (For God do the 
knowe. 

And for oure Savyour we do the reverens ; 
Alle oure hool love now in the doth growe, 

O sovereyn Lord of most excellens ! 
Helpe us of 30ur grace whan that we go hens, 

£For azens deth us helpyht not to stryve. 
But a3en 30ur myght is no resistens, 

Oure dethe 3e may aslake and kepe us stylle on lyve. 

Jhesus. Now I have shewyd in opyn syght, 

Of my Grodhed the gret glorye ; 
To-ward my passyon I wyl me dyght, 

The tyme is nere that I must deye. 
ffor alle mankjmde his sowle to hye, 

A crown of thorn xal perchyn myn brayn. 
And on the mont of Calvarye, 

Upon a cros I zal be slayn. 



XXV. THE COUNCIL OF THE JEWS. 



Demon. I am 30ur lord Lucifer, that out of helle cam, 
Prince of this werd, and gret duke of helle. 

Wherefore my name is clepyd Sere Satan, 

Wheche aperyth among 30W a matere to spelle. 

I am norssher of synne to the confusyon of man, 

To bryng hym to my dongeon ther in fyre to dwelle. 

Ho so evyr serve me, so reward hym I kan. 
That he xal syng weleaway ever in peynes ffelle. 

Lo ! thus bountevous a lord than now am I, 

To reward so synners, as my kend is ; 
Whoso wole folwe my lore and serve me dayly. 

Of sorwe and peyne anow he xal nevyr mys. 

Sot I began in hefne synne for to sowe, 

Amonge alle the angellys that weryn there so bryth ; 
And therfore was I cast out into helle ful lowe, 

Notwythstandyng I was the fayrest and berere of lyth, 

3et in drowe in my tayle of tho angelys bryth ; 

With me into helle takyth good hed what I say ; 
I leste but tweyn a3ens on to abyde there in lyth. 

But the iij.<^* part come with me, this may not be 
seyd nay. 

Takyth hed to your prince than, my pepyl everychon, 
And seyth what maystryes in hefhe I gan ther do play; 



240 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

To gete a thowsand sowlys in an houre me tbynkyth it 
but skorn, 
Syth I wan Adam and Eve on the fyrst day. 

But nowmervelous'mendys rennyn in myn rememberawns. 
Of on Cryst wiche is clepyd Joseph and Maryes sone ; 

Thryes I tempte hym be ryt.h sotylle instawnce, 

Afty r he fast fourty days ageyns sensual myth or reson. 

ffor of the stonys to a mad bred, but sone I had conclusyon. 
Than upon a pynnacle, but angelys were to hym as- 
systent ; 

His answerys were mervelous, I knew not his intencion ; 
And at the last to yeyn glory, but nevyr I had myn intent. 

And now hath he xij. dyscypulys to his attendauns, 

To eche towne and cety he sendyth hem as bedellys ; 
In dyverce place to make ffor hym purvyauns. 

The pepyl of hese werkys fful grettly merveyllys. 
To the crokyd, blynd, and dowme, his werkys prevaylySi 

La3aru8 that foure days lay ded his lyff recuryd; 
And where I purpose me to tempt, anon he me asaylys ; 

Mawdelyn plajm remyssyon also he hath ensuryd. 

Goddys son he pretendyth bxA to be born of a mayde. 

And seyth he xal dey for mannys salvacion. 
Than xal the trewth be tryed and no fordere be delayd. 

Whan the soule from the body xal make separacion ; 
And as for hem that be undre my grett domynacion. 

He xal fayle of hese intent and purpose also. 
Be this tyxt of holde remembryd to myn intencion. 

Quia in inferno nulla est redemptio ! 

But whan the tyme xal ney th of his persecucion, 
I xal arere new engynes of malycious conspiracy, 



THE COU^•CIL OF THE JEWS. 24 

Plenty of reprevys I xal provide to bis confusyon, 

Thus xal I false ttie wordys that his pepyl dolh testefy ; 

His djscipulis xal furcate liym, aud here raayster denye, 
Innoiimberabyl xal liese woundys be of woful grevauns. 

A tretowre xal countyrfe his deth to fortyfye ; 

The rebukys that he gyf me xal turne to his displesauns. 

Some of hese dyscypulya xal be chef of this ordenawos. 
That xal fortefye this terme that in trost is treson ; 

Thus xal I venge be sotylte al my tnalycioua grevauns ; 
ffiir uothyng may excede my pnidens and dyscrecion. 

Gyff me 30ur love, grawot me myn affeccion. 
And I wyl unclose the tresor of lovys alyawns, 

And gyff jow 3oure desyrys afftere 30ure intencion ; 
No poverty xal aproche 30W, fro plentevous abundauns, 

Byholde the dy vercyt^ of my dysgysyil varyauns, 

Eehe thyng sett of dewe nat«ralle dysposycion, ' 

And eche parte acordynge to his resemblauns, 
ffro the sool of the ffoot to the hyest asencion, 

Off ffyne cordewan a goodly peyre of long pekyd schon ; 

Hosyn enclosyd of the most costyous cloth of crenseyn ; 
Thufl a bey to a jentylman to make comperyclon. 

With two doseyn poyntys of cheverelle, the aglottea of sylver 

A shert of feyn Holond, but care not for the payment ; 

A stomachere of clere reynes the best may be bowth ; 
Thow poverty be chef, lete pride ther be present. 

And alls tho that repreff pride, thou sette hem at nowth. 



Cadace woUe or floUkys, where it may be sowth. 

To stuffe withal thi dobbelet, and make the of proporryoi 



k 



242 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. ■ 

Two smale legges and a gret body, thow it ryme nowth, B 

}et loke that thou desyre to an the aewe faccion. ■ 

A gowne of thre jerdys, loke Uiqu make compariaon, ■ 

L'nto atle degrees dayly that passe tliin astat; I 

A purse withoutyn mony, a daggere for devoscyon { ■ 

And there repref is of synne, loke thou make debat. I 

With syde lokkys I schrewe thin here to thi colere hangyng down% I 

To herborwe qweke bestys that tekele men onylh ; I 

An hey smal honet for curyng of the crowne, I 

And alle beggerea and pore pepyll have hem in dyspyte. I 

Onto the grete othys and lycherye gyf thi deljte; I 

To maynteyn thin astate lete brybory be present ; I 

And yf the ]awe repreve the, say thou wylt ffyth, " I 

And gadere the a felacliep after tliia entent, I 

Loke thou sett not be precept nor be comawndement, I 

Both sevyle and canon sett thou at nowth ; I 

Lette no membre of God but with othys be rent ; 1 

Lo ! thus this werd at tiiis tyme to myn entent is browth. 1 

I, Satlian, with my felawus this werd hath sowth, I 

And now we hac it at houre plesawns ; I 

ffor synne is not shamfast, but boldnes hath bowth, I 

That xal cause hem in helle to have inerytawns. 1 

A beggerys dowtere to make gret purvyauns, 

To cownterfete a jentylwoman, dysgeysed as she can. 
And yf mony lakke, this is the newe clievesauns. 

With here prevy plesawns to gett it of sum man. 
Here colere splayed, and furryd witli ermyn, calabere, or satan ; 

A seyn to selle lechery to hem that wyl bey ; 
And thei that wyl not by it, yet i-now xal tbei ban. 

And telle hem it is for love, she may it not deney. 




THE COUNCIL OF THE JEWS. 248 

I have browih 30W newe namys, and wyl 30 se why 
ffor synne is so plesaunt to eche mannys intent, 

56 xal kalle pride oneste, and nateralle kend lechory. 
And covetyse wysdam there tresure is present. 

Wreth manhod, and envye callyd chastement ; 

Seyse nere sessyon, lete perjery be chef; 
Glotenye rest, let abetynawnce beyn absent ; 

And he that wole exorte the to vertu, put hem to repreff. 

To rehers al my servauntes my matere is^ breff. 
But alle these xal everyth the dy vicion eternal ; 

Thow Cryst by his sotylte many materys meef, 
In evyrlastynge peyne with me dwellyn thei xal. 

Bemembre, oure servauntes, whoys sowlys ben mortalle, 
£Fbr I must remeffe for more materys to provyde ; 

I am with 30W at alle tymes whan 3e to councel me calle. 
But for a short tyme myself I devoyde. 

Johannes Baptist. \, John Baptyst, to 30W thus prophesye, 

That on xal come aftyr me and not tary longe, 
In many folde more strengere than I, 

Of whose shon I am not worthy to lose the thonge. 
Wherefore I councel the 36 reforme alle wronge, 

In 30ur concyens of the mortalle dedys sevyn, 
And for to do penawns loke that 36 ffonge, 

fFor now xal come the kyngdham of hevyn. 

The weys of oure lord cast 30W to aray, 

And therin to walk loke 36 be applyande ; 
And make his pathys as ryth as 36 may, 

Kepyng ryth forth, and be not declinande. 
Neyther to fele on ryth nor on lefte hande, 
, But in the myddys purpose 30W to holde, 



k 



Sii COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

ITor (hat id alle wyee is most plesande, 
As 36 xal here, whan I hare tolde. 

Of this wey for to make rooralysacyon, 

Be the ryth syde }e xal UDdyrstonde mercy, 
And on the lefte syde lykkenyd dysperacion, 

And the patthe betwyn bothyn, that may not wry, 
SL-lial be hope and drede to walk in perfectly, 

Declynyng not to fele, for no maner nede ; 
Grete cawsys I xal sheve 30W why. 

That 3e xal sowe the patthe of hope and drede. 

On the mercy of God to meche }« xal not liolde, 

As in this wyse behold what I mene ; 
ffor to do synne be thou no more bolde. 

In trost that God wole mercyful bene. 
And yf be sensualyt^, as it is ofte sene, 

Synnyst dedly, thou xalt not therfore dyspeyre ; "" 

But therfore do penawiis and coiifesse the clene, 

And of hevyn thou mayst trost to ben eyre. 

TJie patbe that lyth to this biyssyd enherytawns. 

Is hope and drede copelyd be conjunccyon ; 
Betwyx these tweyn may be no dysseverawns, 

ffur hope withowtyn drede is maner of preanmpcion. 
And drede withowtyn hope is maner of dysperacion. 

So these tweyn must be knyt be on acorde. 
i^Iow 36 xal aray the wey, I have made declaracion, 

Also the ryth patthia, asensthe comyng of oure Lord. 

Here a-al Annas »hewyn hymseffin his stage, be seyn after a 
husaluip of the Hoold lawe, in a skarlet gowne, and over that a 
blew tabbard furryd with wkyte, and a mylere on his hed, after 
the hoold lawe ; tj. doctorys stondyng by hym in furryd hodys, 
and on befom hem with his staff of astaf, and eche of hem on 



THE COUNCIL OP THE JEWS. 245 

here hedys afurryd capper with a gret knqp in the crowney and 
on stondyng btfom as a Sara^yn, the wiche xal be his masan-- 
gere. Annas thus seyng^ 

As a prelat am I properyd to provyde pes. 

And of Jewys jewge the lawe to fortefye, 
I, Annas, be my powere xal comawnde dowteles,. 

The lawys of Moyses no man xal denye. 
Hoo excede my comawndement anon 36 certefye. 

If any eretyk here reyn to me 36 compleyn, 
For in me lyth the powere, alle trewthis to trye, 

And pryncypaly oure lawys tho must I susteyn. 

3ef I may aspey the contrary, no wheyle xal thei reyn. 

But anon to me be browth and stonde present 
fiefore her jewge, wiche xal not feyn. 

But aftere here trespace to gef hem jugement. 
Now, serys, for a prose herythe myn intent. 

There is on Jhesus of Na3areth that oure lawys doth excede, 
Yf he procede thus we xal us alle repent. 

For oure lawys he dystroyt dayly with his dede. 

Therefore be 3 our cowncel we must take hede. 

What is be to provyde or do in this case ; 
flfor yf we let hym thus go and ferdere prosede, 

Ageyn Sesare and oure lawe we do trespace. 
Primus Doctor. Sere, this is myn avyse that 30 xal do. 

Send to Cayphas for cowncel, knowe his intent ; 
ffor yf Jhesu proc^ and thus forth go, 

Oure lawys xal be dystroyed, thes so we present. 

Secundus doctor. Sere, reraembre the gret charge that on 30W 
is leyd, 

The lawe to ke[pe] whiche may not ffayle ; 
Yf any defawth prevyd of 30W be seyd, 

The Jewys with trewlli wyl 30W asayl. 



L 



atti COVENTHY MYSTERIES. 

Tak lied whath cownsayl may best prevayl. 
After Rewfyn and L?yon I rede that 36 eendi?, 

Tliey arn temperal jewgys that knowyth the parayl. 
With 30ure cosyn Cayphaa this matere to amende. 

Jnntu. Now surely this cowucel revyfe myn herte. 

joure cowncel is best, as I can sej — 
Arfexe, in hast loke that thou styrte. 

And pray Cayphae my cosyn come speke with me. 

To Rewfyn and Leon thu go also. 

And pray hem thei speke with me in hast ; 
ffor a pryncipal matere tliat have to do, 

Wiche must be knowe, or this day be past. 

Arfexe. My sovereyn at 30ur intent I xal gon. 

In al the hast that 1 kan hy ; 
Onto Cayplias, Rewfyn, and Lyon, 

And charge joure intent that thei xal ply. 

Heregoth the masangtre forth, and in the menetyme Cayphas 
she^oyth himstlf in hU skafhald arayd lyche to Annas, lavyng his 
tabbard xal be red furryd with white : if. doctorya with him 
arayd with j)elly» aftyr the oidgyse, and furryd cappys on here 
hedys. Cayphas thus seyng. 

As a primat most prendent I present here senayble 
Buschopys of the lawe with al the cyrcumstawns ; 

I, Cayphas, am jewge, with powerys possyble, 

To distroye alle erroris that in owre lawys make varyawns. 

Alle thynges I convey be reson and teraperawoce, 
And alle materia possyble to me ben palpable ; 

Of the lawe of Moyses I have a chef governawns, 
ere ryth and wrong in me is termynable. 



But ther is on Cryst that oure lawys is varyable, 
He pervertcttie pepyl with his prechyng ille ; 




THE COUNCIL OF THE JEWS. S47 

We must seke amene onto bym reprevable, 
£Fbr yf he procede, owre lawys he wyl spjlle. 

We must take good cowncel in this case. 

Of the wisest of the lawe that kan the trewthe telle ; 

Of the jewgys of pharasy and of my cosyn Annas, 
For yf he precede be prossesse oure lawys he wyl felle. 

Primus doctor. Myn lord, plesyt 30W to pardon me fi>r 
to say, 

The Uame in 30W is, as we fynde ; 
To lete Cryst contenue thus day be day, 

With his &ls wichecraft the pepyl to blynde. 
He werkyth fals meraclis ageyns alle kende. 

And makyth oure pepyl to leve hem in ; 
It is 3 our part to take hym and do hym bynde. 

And gyf hym jugement for his gret syn. 

Secundus doctor. £Fbrsothe, ?ere, of trewth this is the case. 

Onto oure lawe 3e don oppressyon. 
That 3e let Cryst from 30U pace. 

And wyl not don on hym correxion. 
Let Annas knowe 3our intencion. 

With prestys and jewges of the lawe. 
And do Cryst fforsake his feds oppynyon. 

Or into a prison lete hem be thrawe. 

Cayphas. Wei, seres, 3e xal se withinne short whyle, 

I xal correcte hym for his trespas, 
He xal no lenger oure pepyl begyle. 

Out of myn dawngere he xal not pas. 

Here corny th the masangere to Cayp?uu, and in the 
mene tyme Rewfyn and Lyon schewyn hem in the place, 
in ray tabardys ftirryd and ray hodys about hj here neckys 
fwrrydy the ma$angere seyngy 



£48 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Myn reverent sovereyn, and it do 30W plese. 
Sere Annas, my lord hath to 30U sent, 

He prayt 30U that 30 xal not sese, 
Tyl that 36 ben with hym present. 

Cayphas. Sere, telle myn cosyn I xal not fayl. 

It was my purpose hym for to se. 
For serteyn materes that wyl prevayle, 

Thow he had notwth a sent to me. 
Masangere. I recomende me to 30ur hey degr^ 

On more massagys I must wende. 
Cayphas. flTarewel, sere, and wel 30 be, 

Gret wel my cosene and my £Prende. 

Here the maeager metyth with thejewges, sayng, 

Heyl ! jewgys of Jewry, of reson most prudent. 

Of my massage to 30U I make relacion. 
My lord, sere Annas, hath for 30U sent. 

To se his presens withowth delacion. 
Rewfyn. Sere, we are redy at his comawndement. 

To se sere Annas in his place ; 
It was oure purpose and oure intent, 

To a be with hym withinne short space. 

Leyon, We are ful glad his presence to se ; 

Sere, telle him we xal dbme in hast ; 
No delacion therin xal be. 

But to his presens hye us fast. 
Masager. I xal telle my lord this, as 3e say, 

36 wyl fulfylle al his plesawns. 
Rewfyn. Sere, telle hym we xal make no delay. 

But come in hast at his instawns. 

Here the masangere corny th to Annas, thus seyng. 

My lord and it plese 30U to have intellygens, 
Ser Cayphas corny th to 30U in hast : 



THE COUNCIL OF THE JEWS. S49 

Rewfyn and Lyon wyl se 30ur presens. 

And se 30W here or this day be past, 
AnmoM. Sere, I kan the thank of thi dyligens. 

Now ageyn my cosyn I wole walk ; 
Serys, folwyth me onto his presens, 

ffor of thes materys we must talk. 

Here Annas goth doum to mete with CayphoMy and in 
the mene tyme thus seyngj 

Cayphas. Now onto Annas let us wende, 

Eche of us to knowe othores intent : 
Many materes I have in mende, 

The wiche to hym I xal present. 
Primus doctor. Sere, of alle othere thyng remembre this 
case, 

Loke that Jhesus be put to schame. 
Secundus doctor. Whan we come present befom Annas, 

Whe xal rehers alle his gret blame. 

Here tJie buschopys with here clerkes and the Phariseus 
metty and the my d place, andther xal be a lytil oratory 
with stolys and cusshonys clenly be-seyny lyche as it were 
a coumsel'hous ; Annas thus seyng. 

We come, ser Cayphas, and 39, jewgys alle. 

Now xal 3e knowe alle myn en tent ; 
A wondyr case, serys, here is befalle. 

On wiche we must gyf jewgement. 
Lyst that we aftere the case repent. 

Of on Cryst that Goddys sone som doth hym calle j 
He shewyth meraclys and sythe present 

That he is pry nee of prynces alle. 

The pepyl so fast to hym doth falle, 

Be prevy menys, as we aspye ; 
3yf he procede, son sen 3e xalle, 

That cure lawys he wyl dystrye ; 



£50 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

It is oure part thus to deny : 

Wliat is 3our cowncelle in this cas ? 

Cayphas. Be reson the trewth here may we try, 

I cannot dem hym withouth trespace ; 
Because he seyth in every a place, 

That he kyng of Jewys in every degr^. 
Therfor he is fals, knowe wel the case, 

Sesar is kyng and non but he. 

Rew/yn. He is an eretyk and a tretour bolde. 

To Sesare and to oure lawe sertajm ; 
Bothe in word, and in werke, and 30 beholde 

He is worthy to dey with mekyl peyn. 
Leon. The cawse that we been here present. 

To fortefye the lawe, and, trewth to say, 
Jhesus fill nere oure lawys hath shent, 

Therfore he is worthy for to day. 

Primus doctor Annas. Seres, 3e that ben rewelerys of the 
lawe, 

On Jhesu 3e must gyf jugement. 
Let hym fyrst ben hangyn and drawe. 

And thanne his body in fyre be brent. 
Secundus doctor Annas. Now xal 3e here the intent of me. 

Take Jhesu that worke us alle gret schame ; 
Put hym to deth, let hym not fie. 

For than the comownys thei wyl 30W blame. 

Primus doctor Cayphas. He werke with wechecrafte in 
eche place. 
And drawyth the pepyl to hese intent ; 
Bewhare, 3e jewgys, let hym not passe, 

Than be my trowthe ze xal repent. 
Secundus doctor Cayphas. Serys, takyth hede onto this 
case. 



THE COUNCIL OF THE JEWS. ftS\ 

And in 30ur jewgement be not slawe ; 
Ther was nevyr man dyd so gret trespace. 
As Jhesu hath don ageyn oure lawe. 

Annas, Now, bretheryn, than wyl 36 here myn entente 

These ix. days let us abyde ; 
We may not gyf so hasty jugement. 

But eche man inqwere on his syde. 
Send spyes abouth the country wyde» 

To se and recorde and testymonye. 
And than hese werkys he xal not hyde, 

Nor have no power hem to denye. 

Cayphas. This cownecelle acordyth to my reson. 
Annas, And we alle to the same. 



XXVI. THE ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM. 



Jhesus. ffrendys, beholde the tyme of mercy^ 
The whiche is come now withowt dowth ; 

Mannys eowle in blys now xal edyfy, 
And the prynce of the werd is cast owth. 

Go to 30D castel that standyth 30W ageyn, , 

Sum of myn dyscyplis go forthe 36 to ; 
There xul 3e ffyndyn bestys tweyh, 

An asse tyed and here fole also. 
Unlosne that asse, and brynge it to me pleyn ; 

•Iff any man aske why that 36 do so, 
Sey t^t I have nede to this best serteyn. 

And he xal not lett 30W 30ur weys for tp'go : 

• 

That best brynge 36 to me. 
Primus Jpostolus. Holy prophete, we gou oure way, 
We wyl not 30ure wourd delay, 
Also sone as that we may, 

We xal it brynge to the. 

Here theiffecche the a$se with the ffoky and the bur- 
geye eeyth^ 

BuTffenns. Herke 30, men, who 3aff 30W leve. 
Thus this best ffor to take ai^ay ? 



THE ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM. S53 

But only £Fbr pore men to releve, 

This astje is ordeyned, as I 30W say. 
Phil^ppui, Good sere, take this at no greff, 

Oure mayster u^ seiit hedyr this day, 
He hath grett nede withowte repreff, 

Therfore not lett us, I the pray. 
This best for to lede. 
Burgenris. Sethyn that it is so that he hath 30W tent, 

Werkyth his wylle and his intent. 
Take the beste, as 3e be bent, 

And evyr wel mote je spede. 

Jacobus minor. This best is brought ryght now here lo ! 

Holy prophete at thin owyn wylle. 
And with this clothe, €Uion, also. 

This bestys bak we xal sone hylle. 
PhU^pus. Now mayst thou ryde whedyr thou wylt go, 

Thyn holy purpos to ffulfylle. 
Thy best fful redy is dyth the to, 

Bothe meke and tame the best is stylle. 
And we be redy also, 
IflT it be plesynge to thi ssyght, 
The to helpe anon forthe ryght, 
Upon this best that thou were dyght, 
Thi jurney ffor to do. 

Here Cryst rydyth out of the place and he wyl^ and 
Petxfr and John abydyn stylle, and at the hst, whan 
thei have done ther prechyng, thei mete with Jhesu, 

Petrus. O, 3e pepyl dyspeyryng, be glad ! 

A grett cawse 30 have, and 30 kan se. 
The Lord that alle thynge of nought mad. 

Is comynge 30ur comfort to be. 
Alle your langoris salvyn xal he, 

30ur helthe is more than 3e kan wete. 



S5* COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

He xal cawse tlio biyode that thei sal se, 
The def to here, the dome for to apeke ! 

Thei that be crokyd, he xal cause heiri to goo 

In the wey that John Eaptyst of prophecyed ; 
Sweche a leche kam jow nevyr non too, 

Wherfore what he comawrdyth lohe 3e applyed. 
That som of jow be blynd, it may not be denyid ; 

£For hym that is 3our makere with 3our gostly ey je 
xal not knowe ; 
Of hiB comaundementes in 30W gret neclygens is sspyed. 

Wherefore def fro gostly heryng clepe 30W I howe. 

And som of jow may not go, 3e be so crokyd ; 

ffor of good werkyng in jow is lytyl habundawns, 
Tweyo fete hevery man xuld have anil it were lokyd, 

Wyche xuld here the body gostly most of substawns ; 
fFyrst is to love God above alle other plesawns ; 

Thesecunde ia tolovetbi neyboreasthinowynpersone; 
And yf these tweyn be kepte in perseverawns ; 

Into the celestyal liabytacion 36 arn habyl to gone. 

Many of jow be dome ; why ? for je wole not redresse. 

Be raowthe jour dedya mortal but therin don perdure; 
Of the wyche but je have contrycyon and jow confesse, 

je may Dot inheryte hevyn, this I jow ensure. 
And of alle these maladyes je may have gostly cure, 

ffur the hevenly leche is comyng jow for to vicyte ; 
And as for payment he wole shewo jow no redrure, 

ffor witii the love of joure hertys he wole be aqwhyte. 

Johannes ApoiMvs. OntomybrotherysforseydrehersaUe, 
That je xuld jeve the more veray confydene, 

I come with hym as testymonyalle, 
ffor to conferme I fortefye his sentens. 



THE ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM. C65 

This lord zal come without resystens, 

Ooto the cety-ward he is now comyng. 
Wherefore dresse 30W with alle dew dylygens. 

To honowre hym as 30ur makere and kyng. 

And to fulfyUe the prophetys prophea^. 

Upon an asse he wole hedyr ryde, 
Shewing 30W exawmple of humylyt^, 

Devoydyng the abhomynable synne of pryde. 
Wheche hath ny conqweryd alle the werd wyde, 

Grettest cause of all 30ur trybulacyon, 
Use it ho so wole, for it is the best gyde^ 

That 36 may have to the place of dampnacyon. 

Now, brothyr in Grod, syth we have intellygens. 

That oure Lord is ny come to this cet^, 
To attend upon hys precyous presens, 

It syttyth to us, as semyth me. 
Wherfore to mete with hym now go we, 

I wold fere no thynge we where to late ; 
To the cet^-ward fast drawyth he. 

Me semyth he is ny at the gate. 

Here spekyth the i^j. ceteseyngs, thefymt thns seyng^ 

Primus cives de Jherusalem, Neyborys, gret joye in oure 
herte we may make. 
That this hefly kyng wole vycyte this cyt^. 
Secundtis cives. Yf oure eerly kyng sweche a jorn6 xuld 
take, 
To don hym honor and worchepe, besy xuld we be. 
Teriitts cives. Meche more than to the hevynly kyng 
bownd are we, 
fibr to do that xuld be to his persone reverens. 
Quartus cives. Late us than welcome hym with flowres 
and brawnchis of the tre, 
ffbr he wole take that to plesawns becawse of redolens. 



S56 COVENTRT MTSTERIES. 

Here the iiij. ceteseynys makyn hem redy for to mete 
with oure Lord, goyng barfot and barelegged, and in here 
shyrtes, savyng thei xal have here gownye cast abouth 
them ; and qwan thei seen oure Lord, thei xal sprede ther 
clothis befom hym, and he xal lyth and go ther upon, and 
thei xalfalle doume upon ther knes alle at onys, thefyrst 
thus seyng. 

Primus cives. Now blyssyd he be that in oure Lordys 
name, 

To us in any wyse wole resorte, 
And we beleve veryly that thou dost the same, 

For be thi mercy xal spryng manuys comforte. 

Here Cryst passyih forth, ther metyth unth hym a ser- 
teyn qfchylderyn withflowres, and cast befom hym, and 
they synggyn ^* Gloria Laus^' and befom on seyth, 

Thow Bone of Davyd, thou be oure supporte, 

At oure last day whan we xal dye. 
Wherefore we alle at onyj to the exorte, 

Cryeng mercy ! mercy 1 mercye ! 

Jhesu. ffrendys, beholde the tyme of mercy ; 

The wiche is come now, withowtyn dowth ; 
Mannys sowle in blysse now xal edyfy. 

And the prynce of the werd is cast owth. 
As I have prechyd in placys abowth. 

And shewyd experyence to man and wyf, 
Into this werd Goddys sone hath sowth 

flFor veray love man to revyfe. 

The trewthe of trew this xal now be tryede, 
And a perfith of corde betwyx God and man, 

Wiche trewthe xal nevyr be dyvide, 
Confusyon onto the fynd Sathan ! 



TUB ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM. 257 

Primus pauper homo. Thou sone of Davyd ! on us have 
mercye. 

As we must stedfast belevyn m the ; 
Thi goodnesse^ Lord, lete us be nye, 

Wheche ly th blynd here and may not se i 

Secundus pauper homo^ Lord, lete thi mercy to us be sewre^ 

And restore to us oure bodyly syth ! 
We know thou may us wel recure. 

With the lest poynt of thi gret myth. 
Jhesu. }owre beleve hath made thou for to se. 

And delyveryd 30W fro alle mortal peyne ; 
Blyssyd be alle tho that beleve on me. 

And se me not with here bodyly eyn. 

Here Cryst blyssyth here eyn and ihei may *e, the fyr»t 
styng. 

Primus pauper homo. Gramercy, Lord ! of thi gretgrace^ 

I that was blynd, now may se. 
Secundum pauper homo. Here I forsake al my trespace. 

And stedfastly wyl belevyn on the. 

Here Cryst procedylh on fote^ with his dyscipulys 
after hym^ Cryst wepyng upon the cyti, saying thus, 

Jhesu. O Jherusalem ! woful is the ordenawnce 

Of the day of thi gret persecucyon ; 
Thou xalt be dystroy with woful grevans, 

And thi ryalt^ browth to trew confusyon. 
3e that in the cet^ hem habytacyon, 

Thei xal course the tyme that thei were borne. 
So gret advercyt^ and trybulacion, 

Xal falle on hem bothe evyn and morwyn. 

Thei that han most chylderyn sonest xal wayle. 
And seyn, alas ! what may this meen ? 



S58 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Both mete emd drjmk sodeynly xal fkyle,-— 
The vengeance of God ther xal be seen. 

The tyme is comyng hes woo xal ben. 
The day of trobyl and gret grevauns ; 

Bothe templys and towrys they xal down cleen, 
O cetd ! fful woful is thin ordenawns 1 



XXVII. THE LAST SUPPER. 



Petrtu. Lord 1 where wolte thou kepe thi maundy ? 

I pray the now lete us have knowjrng : 
That we may make redy for the^ 

The to serve withowte latyng. 
Johannes. To provyde, Lord^ for thi comyng, 

With alle the obedeyns we kan atende. 
And make redy for the in al thyng. 

Into what place thou wyth us send. 
Jhesu. Serys, goth to Syon, and ye xal mete 

A pore man in sympyl aray, 
Beryng watyr in the strete^ 

Telle hym I xal come that way. 

Onto hym mekely loke that ye say. 

That hese hous I wole come tylle ; 
He wele not onys to 30W sey nay, 

But sofre to have alle 30ur wylle. 
Petrus. At thi wyl. Lord, it xal be don. 

To seke that place we xal us hye. 
Johannes. In alle the hast that we may go. 

Thin comawdement nevyr to denye. 

Here Petyr and John gon forth metyng with Symon 
leprows beryng a kan with watyr y Petyr thus seyng, 

Petrus. Good man, the prophete, oure Lord Jhesus, 

This ny th wyl reste wy thin thin halle j 
On massage to the he hath sent us. 

That flfor his sopcre ordeyn thou xalle. 

s^ 



860 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Johannes. 3a ! for hym and his dyscipulys alle, 

Ordeyn thu for his maundy, 
A paschalle lomb what so befalle, 

ffor he wyl kepe his pasche with the. 
Symon. What^ wyl ray Lord vesyte my plase P 

Blyssyd be the tyme of his comyng 1 
I xal ordeyn withinne short space 

ffor my good lordys welcomyng. 
SerySy walkyth in at the begynnyng. 

And se what vetaylys that I xal take, 
I am so glad of this tydyng, , 

I wot nevyr what joye that I may make. 

Here the dyscypulys gon in with Symon to se the or^ 
denawnSj and Cryst comyng thedyr-ward, thus seyng^ 

Jhesus. This pathe is cal Sydon be goostly ordenawns, 

Weche xal convey us, wher we xal be, 
I knowe ful redy is the purvyaunce, 

Of my frendys that lovyn me. 
C!ontewnyng in pees now procede we, 

ffor mannys love this wey I take. 
With gostly ey I veryly se, 

That man ffor man an hende must make. 

Here the dysciples come ageyn to Cryst j Petyr thus 

Petrus. Alleredy lord is oure ordenawns. 

As I hope to 30W plesyng xal be, 
Seymon hath don, at 30ure instawus. 

He is ful glad 3 our presens to se. 
Johannes. Alle thyng we have, Lorde, at oure plesyng, 

That longyth to 30ure mawnd^ with ful glad chere ; 
Whan he herd telle of 3our comyng, 
ret joye in hym than dyd appere. 

Here corny th Symon owt of his hous to welcome Cryst, 



THE LAST SUPPER. «6l 

Symofi. Gracyous Lord, welcome thu be, 

Reverens be to the, both God and man ! 
My poer hoos that thou wylt se, 

Weche am thi servaunt, as I kan. 
Jhesfi. There joye of alle joyis to the is sewre ! 

Symon, I knowe thi trewe intent. 
The blysse of hefne thou xalt recure, 

This rewarde I xal the grawnt present. 

Here Cry si enteryih into the hous with hii £$ciptii 
and ete the Paschal lomb ; and in the mene tyme the 
cowmeUhous befom^eyd xal sodeynly onclase^ schewyng 
the bwfchapys, prestySy andjewgys syttyng in here aetata 
hfche as it were a convocacyon ; Annas seyng thus, 

Annas. Beheld it is nowth al that we do, 
In alle houre materys we prophete nowth ; 

Wole 3e se weche peusawns of pepyl drawyth hym to, 
ffor the mervaylys that he hath wrowth. 

Some othyr sotylte must be sowth, 

flfor in no wyse we may not thus hym leve ; 
Than to a schrewde conclusyoun we xal be browth, 

flPor the Romaynes than wyl us myscheve, 
And take oure astat and put us to repreve, 

And convey alle the pepyl at here owyn request^ 
And thus alle the pepyl in hym xal beleve, 

Therfore I pray 30W, cosyn, say what is the best? 
Cayphas, Attende now, serys, to that I xal seye. 

Onto us alle it is most expedyent ; 
That o man ffor the pepyl xuld deye, 

Than alle the pepyl xuld perysch and be shent. 

Therfor late us werk wysely that we us not repent. 
We must nedys put on hym som fals dede ; 



26S COVENTRY MYSTERIES, 

I sey for me I had levyr he were brent, 
Than he xuld us alle thus ovyr-lede ; 

Therfore every man on his party help at this nede. 
And cowntyrfete alle the sotylt^ that 36 kan. 

Now late se he kan ^eve best rede. 

To ordeyn sum dystruccion ffor this man. 

Gamalyel. Late us no longer make delacion. 

But do Jhesu be takyn in hondys fast ; 
And alle here ffolweres to here confusyon. 

And into a preson do hem be cast. 
Ley on hem yron that wol last, 

ffor he hath wrouth a3ens the rjrth ; 
And sythyn aftyr we xal in hast 

Jewge hym to deth with gret dyspyth. 

JRewfyn. ffor he hath trespacyd a^ens oure lawe, 

Me semyth this were best jewgement ; 
With wyld hors lete hym be drawe, 

And a£Ftyr in fyre he xal be brent. 
Leyon. Serys, o thyng myself herd hym sey, 

lliat he was kyng of Jewys alle. 
That is anow to do hym dey, 

ffor treson to Se^ar we must it calle. 

He seyd also to personys that I know, 

That be xuld and myth serteyn 
The gret tempyl mythyly ovyrthrow. 

And the thrydde day reysynt ageyn. 

Seche roaterys the pepyl doth consey ve, 

To 3eve credens to his werkys alle. 
In hefhe, he seyth, xal be his reyn, 

Bothe God and man he doth hym calle. 



THE LAST SUPPER. SOS 

Rewfyn. And alle liiis day we xuU contryve. 

What shameful deth Jhesa xuld have ; 
We may not do hym to mecbe myscheve, 

The worchep of oure lawe to save. 

Ltjffm. Upon a jebet lete hym faongyn be. 

This jugement me semyth it is reson ; 
That alle the country may hym se, 

And be ware behis gret treeoQ. 
Bewfyn. 3et o thyng, serys, je must aspye. 

And make a ryth sotyl ordenawns ; 
Be what menys 30 may come hym bye, 

ffor he hath many folwerys at his instawns. 
Annas. Serys, therof we most have avysem^it, 

And ben acordyd or than we go ; 
How we xal han hym at oure entent, 

Som wey we xal fynd therta 

Here Judas Caryoth corny th into the place. 

Maria Magdalene. As a cursyd creature closyd aUe in care. 

And as a wyckyd wrecche alle wrappyd in wo, 
Of blysse was nevyr no berde so bare, 

As I mysylf that here now go. 
Alas ! alas ! I xal forfare, 

ffor tho grete synnys that I have do ; 
Lesse that my lord God sumdel spare. 

And his grett mercy recey ve me to. 

Mary Maudelyn is my name. 
Now wyl I go to Cryst Jhesu, 
ffor he is Lord of alle vertu. 
And for sum grace I thynke to sew, 

ffor of myself I have grett shame. 

A ! mercy ! Lord ! and salve my synne, 
Maydenys ffloure thou wasche me fre, 



S64 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Ther was nevyr woman of mannys kynne. 

So ful of synne in no country. 
I have beffowlyd be fryth and ffenne. 

And sowght synne in many a cet^ ; 
But thou me borwe. Lord, I xal brenne, 

With blake ffendys ay bowne to be. 
Wherefore, kynge of grace. 
With this oynement that is so sote, 
Lete me anoynte thin holy fote 
And for my balys thus wyn sum bote. 

And mercy, Lord, for my trespace* 

Jhesus. Woman, ffor thi wepynge wylle, 

Sum socowre God xal the sende ; 
The to save I have grett skylle, 

fibr sorwefful hert may synne amende. 
Alle thi prayour I xal fulfylle, 

To thi good hert I wul attende. 
And save the fro thi s]mne so hylle, 

And fro vij. develys I xal the ffende,— 
ffendys, flethe 30ur weye I 
Wyckyd spyritys I jow conjowre, 
fflethe out of hire bodyly bowre, 
In my grace she xal evyr fflowre, 

Tyl dethe doth here to deye. 

Maria Magdalene, I thanke the, Lorde, of this grett 
grace ; 

Now these vij. ffendys be fro me ffl tt. 
I xal nevyr fforffett nor do trespace, 

In wurd nor dede, ne wyl, nor wytt 

Now I am brought ffrom the fendys brace, 
Id thi grett mercy cloeyd and shjrtt ) 



THE LAST SUPPER. 265 

I xal nevyr returne to synful trace. 
That xulde me dainpne to helle pytt. 

I wurchep the on knes bare, 
Blyssyd be the tyme that I hedyr sowth. 
And this oynernent that I hedyr brought^ 
ffor now myn hert is clensyd from thought. 

That ffyrst was combryd with care. 

Judas. Lord ! me thynkyth thou dost ryght iUe, 
To lete this oynement so spylle, 
To selle it yt were more skylle, 

And bye mete to poer men. 
The box was worthe of good mon^, 
iij.c. pens, fayr and fre. 
This myght a bowht mete plenty. 

To ffede oure power kene. 

Jhesus. Pore men xul abyde ; 

Ageyn the woman thou spekyst wronge. 
And I passe forthe in a tyde, 

Off mercy is here momyng songe. 

Here Cryat reatyth and etyth a lytyl, and seyth, syi- 
tyng to his dlsciplis, and Mary Mawdelyn^ 

Jhesus. Myn herte is ryght sory and no wondyr is^ 

Thoo dethe I xal go and nevyr dyd trespas ; 
But jitt most grevyth myn hert evyr of this. 

On of my bretheryn xal werke this manas. 
On of 30W here syttynge my treson xal tras, 

On of 30W is besy my dethe here to dyth, 
And 3itt was I nevyr in no synful plas, 

Wherefore my dethe xuld so shamfuUy be pyght. ' 

Petrus. My dere Lord, I pray the the trewthe for to telle, 
Whiche of us ys he that treson xal do ? 



366 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Whatt traytor is he that his lord that wold selle ? 

Expresse his name, Lord, that xal werke this woo. 
Johannes. If that ther be on that wolde selle so, 

Good mayster, telle us now opynly his name. 
What traytour is hym that frcnn the that wolde go ? 

And with ffals treson fiiilfylle his grett shame? 

Andreas. It is ryght dredfuU suche tresson to thynke. 

And wel more dredfiul to weik that bad dede ; 
ffor that ffids treson to helle he xal synke, 

In endles peynes grett myscheff to lede. 
Jacobus major. It is not I, Lord^ ffor dowte I have drede. 

This synne to fulfylle cam nevyr in my mende. 
Iff that I solde the thy blood ffor to blede. 

In doyng that treson my sowle xulde I shende. 

Matheus. Alas ! my dere Lord, what man is so wood, 

ffor gold or for sylvyr hymself so to spyUe ? 
He that the doth selle ffor gold and for other good. 

With his grett covetyse hymself he doth kylle. 
Bartkohmeus. What man so evyr he be of so wyckyd 
wylle, 

Dere Lord, among us telle us his name alle owt ; 
He that to hym tendyth this dede to fulfRUe, 

ffor his grett treson his sowle stondyth in dowt. 

P/dUppus. Grolde, sylver, and tresoour sone dotiie passe away. 

But withowtyn ende evyr dothe laste thi grace. 
A ! Lord ! who is that wylle chaffare the for monay ? 

£fbr he that sellyth his lord to grett is the tre^)ace. 
Jacobtis minor. That traytour that doth this orryble raanace, 

Bothe body and sowle I holde he be lorn ; 
Dampnyd to helle-pytt, fer from thi face, 

Amonge a)le ffowle fyndys to be rent and torn. 



THE LAST SUPPER. 9ffJ 

Sfftnon. To bad a marchawnt that traytour he is, 

And fiPor that monye he may mornyng make ; 
Alas ! what cawsyth hym to selle the kyng of blys ? 

ffor his fSeds wynnynge the devyl hym xal take. 
ITumuu. ffor his ffals tresoD the fendys so blake 

Xal here his sowle depe down into helle pytt ; 
Resste xal he non have, but evyr more wake^ 

Brennyng in hoot fyre, in preson evyr shytt. 

Thadeus. I woundyr ryght sore who that he xuld be, 

Amonges us alle bretheryn, that xuld do this synoe ? 
Alas, he is lorn ! ther may no grace be, 

In depe helle donjeon his sowle he doth pynne. 
Jhesus. In my dysche he etyht this treson xal begynne, 

Wo xal betydyn hym for his werke of dred ; 
He may be ryght sory swyche ryches to wynne. 

Ad whysshe hymself unborn ffor that synful ded. 

Judas. The trewth wolde I knowe as leff as ye. 

And therfore, good ssere, the trewthe thou me telle ; 
Whiche of us alle here that traytour may be, 

Am I that person that the now xal selle. 
Jhesus. So seyst thiselff, take hed att thi spelle. 

Thou askyst me now here if thou xalt do that treson } 
Remembyr thiself, avyse the ryght welle. 

Thou art of grett age, and wotysst what is reson. 

Here Judas rysyih prevely andgoth in the place andseyt, 

Judas. Now cowntyrfeted I have a prevy treson^ 

My masterys power for to felle, 
I, Judas, xal asay be some encheson. 

Onto the Jewys hym for to selle. 
Som mony for hym 3et wold I telle, 

Be prevy menys I xal asay. 



868 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Myn intent I xal fiilfylle, 
No lenger I wole make delay. 

The princys of prestys now be present. 

Unto hem now my way I take, 
I wyl ga tellyn hem myn entent, 

I trow ful mery I xal hem make. 
M ony 1 wyl non forsake. 

And thei profyr to my plesyng, 
For covetyse I wyl with hem wake, 

And onto my maystyr I xal hem bryng. 

Heyl prynsesse and prestys that ben present. 

New tyd3mge8 to 30W I come to telle, 
3yf je wole folwe myn intent. 

My mayster, Jhesu, I wole 50W selle, 
Hese intent and purpose for to felle ; 

ffor I wole no lenger folwyn his lawe ; — 
Late sen what mony that I xal telle. 

And late Jhesu my maystyr ben hangyn and drawe. 

GamalyeL Now welcome, Judas, oure owyn frende ! 

Take hym in, serys, be the honde : 
We xal the bothe geve and lende. 

And in every qwarel by the stonde. 
Rewfyn. Judas, what xal we for thi mayster pay ? 

Thi sylver is redy, and we acorde. 
The payment xal have no delay, 

But be leyde down here at a worde. 

Judas. Late the mony here down be layde. 

And I xal telle 30W, as I kan ; 
In old termys I have herd seyde. 

That mony makyth schapman. 



THE LAST SUPPER. 269 

Rewfyn. Here is thretty platys of sylver bryth. 

Fast knyth withinne this glove ; 
And we may have thi mayster this nyth. 

This xalt thou have, and alle oure love. 

Judas. 56 are resonable chapman to bye and selle, 

This bargany with 30W now xal I make ; 
Smyth up, 36 xal have al 30ur wylle, 

iFor mony wyl I non forsake. 
Leytm. Now this bargany is mad ful and fast, 

Noyther part may it forsake ; 
But Judas thou must telle us in hast, 

Be what menys we xal hym take. 

Rewfyn. 3a ther be many that hym nevyr sowe, 

Weche we wyl sende to hym in fere ; 
Therfor be a tokyn we must hym knowe. 

That must be prevy betwyx us here. 
Leyon, 3a beware of that for ony thynge, 

For o dyscypil is lyche thi mayster in al parayl ; ^ 
And 3e go lyche in alle clothyng, 

So myth we of oure purpose fayl. 

Judas. As for that, serys, have 36 no dowth. 

I xal ordeyn, so 36 xal not mysse ; 
Whan that 36 cum hym alle abowth, 

Take the man that I xal kysse. 

I must go to my maystyr ageyn, 

Dowth not, serys, this matere is sure i-now. 

Gamalyel. Farewel, Judas, oure frend serteyn, 
Thi labour we xal ryth wel alow. 

Judas, Now wyl I sotely go seke my mayster ageyn. 
And make good face, as I nowth knew ; 



870 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

I have hym solde to wo and peyn, 
I trowe ful sore he xal it rew. 

Here Judas goth in sotylly wher as he cam fro. 

Antms. L09 seryS) a part we have of oure entent. 

For to take Jhesu now we must provyde ; 
A sotyl meny to be present, 

That dare fyth and wele abyde. 
GamalyeL Ordeyn eche man on his party, 

Cressetys, lantemys, and torchys lyth ; 
And this nyth to be tber redy, 

With exys, gleyvis, and swerdys bryth. 
Cayphas. No lenger than make we teryeng. 

But eche man to his place hym dyth. 
And ordeyn prively for this thyng. 

That it be don this same nyth. 

Here the buschopys partyn in the place, and eche of 
hem takyn here leve, he contenawns, resortyng eche man 
to his place with here meny to make redy to take Cryst ; 
and than xal the place ther Cryst is in xal sodeynly 
unclose rownd ahowty shewyng Cryst syttyng at the 
table and hese dyscypules eche in ere degrS, Cryst thus 
seyng, 

Jhesu. Bredereyn, this lambe that was set us beforn. 

That we alle have etyn in this nyth. 
It was comawndyd be my &dyr to Moyses and Aaron, 

Whan thei weryn with the chylderyn of Israel in Egy thp. 
And as we with sw^te bredys have it ete, 

And also with the byttyr sokelyng. 
And as we take the hed with the fete, 

80 dede thei in alle maner thyng. 

And as we stodyn so dede thei stond. 
And here reynes thei gyrdyn veryly. 



THE LAST SUPPER. 871 

With scbon on here fete and stavys in here bond. 

And as we ete it, so dede thei hastyly. 
This fygure xal sesse, anothyr xal folwe therby ; 

Weche xal be of my body that am jour bed, 
Weche xal be shewyd to 30W be a mystery, 

Of my ffiesche and blood in forme of bred. 

And with fervent desyre of hertys affeccion, 

I have enterly desyryd to kepe my mawnd^, 
Among 30W er than I suffre my passyon, 

ffor of this no more togedyr suppe xal we. 
And as the Paschal lomb etyn have we^ 

In the eld lawe was usyd for a sacryfyce, 
So the newe lomb that xal be sacryd be me, 

Xal be usyd for a sacryfyce most of price. 

Here xal Jhesus take a noble in his hand, lokyng 
upward into hefne, to thefadyr thus seyng. 

Wherefore to the, Fadyr of hefne, that art etemalle, 

Thankyng and honor I jeld onto the. 
To whom be the Godhed I am eqwalle, 

fiut be ray manhod I am of lesse d^r^. 
Wherefore I, as man, worchep the deyt^ 

Thankjrng the, fadyr, that thou wylt shew this mystery. 
And thus thurwe thi myth, Fadyr, and blyssyng of me. 

Of this that was bred is mad my body. 

Here xal he spekyn ageyn to his dysciples, thus seyng, 

Bretheryn, be the vertu of these wordys that rehercyd be, 
This that shewyth as bred to jour apparens. 

Is mad the very flesche and blod of me. 

To the weche thei that wole be savyd must jeve credens. 

And as in the olde lawe it was comawndyd and precepte. 
To ete this lomb to the dystruccyon of Fharao unkende. 



587* COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

So to dystroy 30ur gostly enmye this xal be kepte^ 
ffor 30ur paschal lombe into the werdys ende. 

ffor this is the very lombe, withowte spot of synne, 

Of weche John the Baptyst dede prophesy, 
Than this prophesye he dede begynne, 

Seyng *' Bcce agnus Dey !*' 
And how 30 xal ete this lombe I xal 3eve infformacion. 

In the same forme as the eld lawe doth specyfye. 
As I shewe be gostly interpretacyon ; 

Therfore to that I xal sey 30ur wyttes loke 30 replye. 

With no byttyr bred this bred ete xal be, 

That is to say, with no byttyrnesse of hate and envye. 
But with the suete bred of love and charyt^, 

Weche ffortefyet the soule gretlye. 
And it schuld ben etyn with the byttyr sokelyng, 

That is to mene, 3yf a man be of synful dysposycion, 
Hathe led his lyff here with myslevyng, 

Therfore in his hert he xal have byttyr contrycion. 

Also the hed with the feet ete xal 3e, 

Be the hed 30 xal undyrstand my Godhed, 
And be the feet 30 xal take myn humanyt^, 

These tweyn 30 xal receyve togedyr in dede. 
This immaculat lombe that I xal 30W 3eye, 

Is not only the Grodhed alone, 
But bothe God and man, thus must 30 beleve ; 

Thus the hed with the feet 3e xal receyve eche on. 

Of this lombe un-ete yf owth belevyth i-wys, 
Yt xuld be cast in the clere fyre and brent ; 

Weche is to mene, yf thou undyrstande nowth al this, 
Put thi feyth in God, and than thou xalt not be shent. 



THE LAST SUPPEB. S78 

The gyrdyl that was comawndyd here reynes to sprede^ 
Xal be the gyrdyl of clennes and chastyt^ ; 

That is to sayn, to be contynent in word, thought, and 
dede. 
And alle leccherous levyng cast 30W for to fle. 

And the schon that xal be 30ur feet upon, 
Is not ellys but exawnpyl of vertuis levyng ; 

Of 50ur form fadeyrs 50U beforn. 

With these schon my steppys 50 xal be sewyng. 

And the staf that in 3our handys 36 xal holde, 

Is not ellys but tlie exawmplys to other men teche ; 

Hold fast 30ur stavys in 30ur handys, and beth bolde 
To every creature myn precepttys for to preche. 

Also 30 must ete this paschalle lombe hastyly. 
Of weche sentens this is the very entent $ 

At every oure and tyme 30 xal be redy, 
ffor to fulfylle my cowmawndement. 

iFor thow 36 leve this day, 36 are not sure 
Whedyr 30 xal leve to morwe or nowth ; 

Therfor hastyly every oure do 30ure besy cure. 

To kepe my preceptys, and than thar 30 not dowth. 

Now have I lerned 30W how }e xal ete 
30ur paschal lombe, that is my precyous body ; 

Now I wyl fede 30W alle with awngellys mete, 
Wherfore to resey ve it com e iForth seryaltly • 

Petrus. Lord, ffor to roceyve this gostly sustenawns 
In dewe forme, it excedyth myn intellygens ; 

ffor no man of Iiymself may have substawns 
To receyve it with to meche reverens. 

T 



274 COVENTRY MY&TEBIES. 

fibr with more delycyous mete. Lord, thoa may us not 
fede, 

Than with, thin owyn precyous body ; 
Wherfore what I have trespacyd in word, thought, or dede,< 

With byttyr contrycioo. Lord, I haske the mercy. 

Whan oure horde '^yvyih his body to his dyscyptdys^ 
he wal sey to eche ofhem^ except to Judas^ 

This is my body, fflesch, and blode. 
That for the xal dey upon the rode. 

And whan Judas corny th last, oure Lord sal sey to 
hym, 

Judas, art tiiou avy^d what thou xalt take ? 
Judas. Lord, thi body I wyl not forsake ! 

And sythyn oure Lord wal sey onto JudaSy 

Jhesu. Myn body to the I wole not denye, 

Sythyn thou wylt presume therupon ; 
Yt xal be thi dampnacyon verylye,— 

I 3eve the wamyng now beforn. 

Andaftyr that Judas hath reseyvyd, he xal syt ther he 
was J Cryst seyng^ 

On of jow hatlv.betrayd me. 

That at my borde with me hath ete ; 
Bettyr it hadde hym for to a be 

Botha unborn and unbegete. 

Than eche dyscypyl xal hke on other ^ and Petyr sal 
sey, 

Petrus. Lord, it is not I. 

And so aUe xul seyn, tyl thei comyn at Judas, weche 
xal sey J 



THE LAST SUPPER. S75 

JudoM. Is it owih I, Lord ? 

Than Jhesus xal sey, 

Jhesus. Judas, thou seyst tlnit word 1 
Me thou ast solde, that was thi ffrend, 
That thou hast begonne breDge to an ende. 

Than Judas xalgon ageyn to the Jewys, and, yf wmu 
tpolne^ xal mete with hym and sey this ^echefohvyng, or 
levynt, whether thei wyl, the devyl thus seyng^ 

Demon. A ! a ! Judas, derlyng myn \ 

Thou art the best to me that evyr was bore ! 

Thou xalt be crownyd in belle peyn 1 

And therof thou xalt be sekyr for evyrmore ! 

Thow hast solde thi maystyr and etyn hym also, 

I wolde thou kowdyst bryngyn hym to helle every del ; 

But 3et I fere he xuld do ther sum sorwe and wo, 
That alle helle xsd crye out on me that sel. 

Sped up thi matere that thou hast begonne, 

I xal to helle for the to mcik redy ; 
Anon thou xsdt com wher thou xalt wonne. 

In fyre and stynk thou xalt sy tt me by. 

Jhesu. Now the sone of God clar]rfyed is, 

And Grod in hym is claryfyed also; 
I am sory that Judas hath lost his blysse, 

Weche xal tume hym to sorwe and wa 

But now in the memory of my passyon. 

To ben partabyl with me in my reyn above, 

36 x£d drynk mjm blood with gret devocyon, 
Wheche xal be xad flFor mannys love. 

t2 



S76 COVENTRY MTSTEfilES. 

Takyth these chsdys of the newe testament, 

And kepyth this evyr in 30ur mende ; 
As often as }e do this with trewe intent, 

It xal defende 30W from ^e ffende. 

Than xal the dyaciphfs com and take the blod. Jhesus 
seyng. 

This is my blood that for mannys synne, 
Outh of myn herte it xal renne. 

And the dyscyplys xul sett them a^en ther thei were, 
and Jhesus xal seyn, 

Takyth hed now, bretheryn, what I have do ; 

With my flesch and blood I have 30W fed I 
ffor mannys love I may do no mo 

Than for love of man to be ded. 

Werfore, Petyr, and 3e everychon, 

3y f 3e love me, fede my schep ; 
That, for fawth of techy ng» thei go not wrong. 

But evyr to hem takyth good kep. 

3evyth hem my body, as I have to ^ow, 

Qweche xal be sacryd be my worde ; 
And'evyr I xal thus abyde with 30W, 

Into the ende of the werde. 

Ho so ety th my body and drynkyth my blood. 

Hoi God and man he xal me take ; 
It xal hym defende from the devyl wood, 

And at his deth I xal hym nowth forsake. 

And ho so not ete my body nor drynke my blood, 

Lyfe in hym is nevyr a dele ; 
Kepe wel this in mende for 30ur good. 

And every man save hymself wele. 



THE LAST SUFFER. S77 

Here Jhesus takyth a basyn with watyr and taw€tfy 
gyrt abawtyn hym^ and fallyth befom Petyr an his 
a kne. 

Jhetus. Another exawmpyl I xal ym shewe^ 

How 36 xal leve in charyt^ ; 
Syt here down at wordys fewe, 

And quat I do 56, sofre me. 

Here he takyth the basyn and the towaly^ and doth 
as the roberych seyth befom. 

Petrus. Lord ! what wylt thou with me do? 

This service of the I wyl forsake ; 
To wassche my feet thou xal not so, — 

I am not worthy it of the to take. 

Jhesu. Petyr and thou forsake my servyces alle» 

The weche to 50W that I xal do ; 
No part with me have thou xal, 

And nevyr com my blysse onto* 

Petrus. That part, Lord, we wyl not forgo, 

We xal abey his comawndement ; 
Wasche hed and hond, we pray the so. 

We wyl don aftyr thin entent. 

Here Jhesus wasshyih his dyscipulys feet by and 
by^ and whypyth hem and kyssyth hem mekely^ and 
sythyn seityth hym doum^ thus seyng^ 

ffrendys, this wasshyng xal now prevayll, 

50ure Lord and mayster ye do me calle ; 
And so I am, withowytn fayl, 

3et I have wasschyd 50W alle. 
A memory of this have 3e xall^ 

That eche of 30W xal do to othyr^ 



S7ft COVENTBY MXSTEEIES. 

With Kmbyl hert submyt egal, 
. Aft.eche of 30W.were otfaerys bcpther* 

Noihyng, serys, so wele plesyth me^ 

Nor no lyffthat man may lede. 
As thei that levyn in charyt^ ; 

In efhe I xal reward here mede. 
The day is come, — I must procede 

ffor to fulfylle the prophecy ; 
This nyth for me 30 xal hem drede. 

Whan noumber of pepyl xal on me cry. 

ffor the prophetys spoke of me. 
And seydyn of deth that I xald take ; 

ffro wheche deth I wole not fie, 
But for mannys synne amendys make. 

This nyth fro 30W be led I zai, 

And }e for fer fro me xal fie ; 
Not onys dur speke whan I 30W calle. 

And some of 30W forsake me. 

ffor 30W xal I dey and ryse ageyn,— 

Un the thrydde day 50 xal me se 
Befom 30W all walkyng playo. 

In the lond of Gralyl^ 

Petrus. Lord, I wyl the nevyr forsake I 

Nor for no perellys fro the fle ; 
I wyl rather my deth take. 

Than onys. Lord, forsake the ! 

Jheiu. Petyr, thou ferthere than thou doyst knowe. 
As for that promese loke thou not make ; 

ffor or the cok bath twyes crowe, 
Thryes thou xal me forsake. 



THE LAST SUPPEB. S79 

But all my frendys, that arn me dere. 

Late us go, the tyme drawyth ny ; 
We may no lengere abydyn here, 

ffor I must walke to Betaqy, 

The tyme is come, the day drawyjth nere, 

Onto my deth I must in hast ; 
Now, Petyr, make halle thi felawys chore. 

My flesche for fere is qwakyng fast. 

Here Jhesus goth to Betany-wardy and fris dyscgfulys 
folwyng with sad contenaums, J/iesus seyng^ 



XXVIH. THE BETRAYING OF CHRIST. 



Now, my dere frendys and bretheryn echone, 

Remembyr the wordys that I xal sey ; 
The tyme is come that I must gon, 

ffor to fulfylle the prophesey. 

That is seyd that I xbI dey , 

The fendys power fro 50W to flem ; 
Weche deth I wole not deney, 

Mannys sowle my spouse for to redem. 

The oyle of mercy is grawntyd playn 

Be this jom6 that I xal take ; 
Be my fieuiyr I am sent sertayn, 

Betwyx God and man an ende to make* 

Man for my brother may I not forsake, 
Nor shewe hym unkendenesse be no wey ; 

In peynys for hym my body schal schake, 
And for love of man, man xal dey. 

Here Jhems and his discipules go toward the mount 
of Olyvet ; and whan he corny th a lytyl ther besyde^ 
in a place lyche to a park^ he byddyt his dyscipules 
abyde hym ther^ and seyth to Petyr or he goth, 

Petyr, with thi ffelawys here xalt thou abyde, 

And weche tyl I come ageyn ; 
I must make my prayere here 50U besyde, 

My flesche qwakyth sore for fere and peyn. 



THE BETRAYING OF CHRIlSlT. 281 

Petrus. Lord, thi request doth me constreyn ; 

In this place I xal abyde stylle 
Not remeve tyl that thou comyst age}m, 

In oonfermyng, Lord, of thi wylle. 

Here Jhesu goth to Olyvet and settyth hym dawne 
on his knesy and pray th to hisfadyr^ thus seyngj 

O, ffadyr ! fadyr ! for my sake 

This gret passyon thou take fro me 
Weche am orde}med that I xal take, 

3yf mannys sowle savyd may be. 
And 3yf it behove, Fadyr, for me 

To save mannys sowle that xuld spylle, 
I am redy in eche degr^. 

The vyl of the for to fulfylle. 

Here Jhesus gothe to his dyscipulis and fyndyth heni 
sclepyng, Jhesus thus seyng to Petyr^ 

Petyr ! Petyr ! thou slepyst fast, 

Awake thi felawys and sclepe no more ; 
Of my deth 30 are not agast, 

30 take 30ur rest and I peyn sore. 

Here Cryst goth ageyn the second tyme to Olyvet^ 
and seyth knelyng^ 

ffitdyr in hevyn, I beseche the 

Remeve my peynes be thi gret grace, 
And lete me fro this deth fle. 

As I dede nevyr no trespace ! 
The watyr and blood owth of my face, 

Dystyllyth for peynes that I xal take ; 
My flesche qwakyth in ferful ease, 

As thow the joyntes asondre xuld schake. 

Here Jhesus goth a^en to his discipulis and fyndyth 
hern asclepe ; Jhesus thus seyng j latyng hem tyne^ 



S88 GOVENTBY MYSTKRIES. 

ffadyr, the thrydde tyme I come ageyn, 

ffulleche myn erdon for to spede ; 
Delyver me, Fadyr, fro this peyn, 

Weche is reducyd mi]jt, fpl gret drede. 
Onto thi gone, Fadyr, take hede ! 

Thou wotyst I dede nevyr dede but good ! 
It is not for me this peyn I lede. 

But for man I swete bothe watyr and blode. 

Here an aangel descendyth to Jhesusj and hryngyth 
to hym a chalys, with an host therin. 

AngeluB. Heyl/bothe God and man indede ! 

The fiadyr hath sent the this present, — 
He bad that thou xuldyst not drede. 

But fulfylle his entent. 
As the parlement of hefhe hath ment 

That mannys sowie xal now redemyd be ; 
from hefhe to herd, Lord, thou wore sent. 

That dede appendyth onto the. 

This chalys ys thi blood, this bred is thi body, 

ffor mannys synne evyr offeryd xal be ; 
To the fadyr of heffne that is sdmythty, 

Thi dyscipulis and alle presthood xal offere fore the. 

Here the aunget ascendyth a}en sodeynly. 

Jhesu. fiadyr, thi wyl ffblfyllyd xal be. 

It is nowth to say a3ens the case $ 
I xal fulfylle the prophesye, 

And sofre deth fibr mannys trespace. 

Here got h Cryst ageyn to his dyscipulySf andfyndyth 
hem sclepyng stylle. 

Awake, Petyr, thi rest is ful long ; 
Of sclep thou wylt make no delay : 



THE BETRAYING OF CHBI8T. 28ft 

Judas is redy, with pepyl strong, 

And doth his part me to betray. 
Ryse up, serys, I 30U pray ! 

Onclose 30ur eyne for my sake ; 
We xal walke into the way. 

And sen hem come that xul me take* 

Petyr, whan thou seyst I am forsake 

Amonge myn frendys, and stond alone, 
AUe the cher that thou kanst make, 

Geve to thi bretheryn everychone. 

Here Jhesus tvith his dyscipulis goth into theplcu:ej 
and ther xal come in a x. personys weyl be-seen in white 
ameys^ and hregandereSj and some dysgysed in odyr 
garmentesy tvith swerdysy gleyvysy and other straung€ , 
weponsy as cressettys, with feyr and Umtemys and 
torchis lyth ; and Judas formest of al conveyng k^m 
to Jhesu be contenawns. Jhesus thus, 

Serys, in 30ur wey 30 have gret hast 

To seke hym that wyl not fle ; 
Of 30W I am ryth nowth agast,-^ 

Telle me, serys, whom seke 3e ? 
Leyon. Whom we seke here I telle the now, 

A tretour is worthy to suffer deth ; 
We knowe he is here among 30W,*- 

His name is Jhesus of Na3areth. 

Jhesu. Serys, I am here that wyl not fle. 

Do to me all that 30 kan ; 
Forsothe I telle 30W I am he, 

Jhesus of Na3areth, that same man. 

Here alle the Jewys falle sodeynly to the erde^whan 
thei here Cryst speke, and qwhan byddyth hem rysyn, 
thei rysyn a} en, Cryst thusseyng^ 



884 COVENTRY MTSTERIES. 

Aryse, serys, whom seke 56? fast have 30 gon. 

Is howth 50ur comyng hedyr for me ? 
I stond beforn 30W here echone, 

That 38 may me bothe knowe and se. 
Rufjfne. Jhesus of Na3areth we seke, 

And we myth hym here aspye. 
Jheiu. I told 30W now with wordys meke, 

Beforn 30W alle, that it was I. 

Judas. Welcome, Jhesu, my mayster dere, 

I have the sowth in many a place f 
I am fnl glad I fynd the here, 

For I wyst nevyr wher thow wace. 

Here Judas kyssyth Jhesus, and anoon alle the Jewys 
come dboioth hym, and ley handy s on hym, andpultyn 
as thei were wode, and makyn on hym a gret cry alle 
at onys ; and aftyr this, Petyr seyth, 

I drawe my swerd now this sel ; 
Xal I smyte, mayster ? fayn wolde I wete ! 

And forthwith he smytyth of Malchus here, and he 
eryeth *' Help myn here ! myn here /" and Cryst blyssyth 
it, and tys hoL 

Jhesus, Put thy swerd in the shede fayr and wel, 
ffor he that smyth with swerd, with swerd xal be smete. 

A ! Judas, this treson cowntyrfetyd hast thou ! 

And that thou xalt ful sore repent ! 
Thou haddyst be bettyr a ben imbom now, 

Thi body and sowle thou hast shent ! 

GamaJyel. Lo, Jhesus ! thou mayst not the cace refuse, 
Bothe treson and eresye in tlie is fownde ; 



THE BETRATINO OF CHRIST. S8S 

Stody now fast on thin excuse^ 

Whyljs that thou gost in cordys bownde. 
Thou kallyst the kyng of this werd rownde, 

Now lete me se thi gret powere, 
And save thiself here, hool and sownde, 

And brynge the out of this dawngere. 

lAjfon. Brjmg forth this tretoure, spare hym nowth I 

Onto Cayphas thi jewge we xal the lede. 
In many a place we have the sowth. 

And to thi werkys take good hede. 

Riffyne. Com on, Jhesus, and folwe me ; 

I am ful glad that I the have ; 
Thou xalt ben hangyn upon a tre,— 

A melyon of gold xal the not save 1 
Leyon. Lete me leyn hand on hym in heye. 

Onto his deth I xal hym brjmg ; 
Shewe forth thi wychecrafte and nygramcmsye ; 

What helpyth ye now al thi fals werkyng? 

Jhe9U. iFrendys, take hede 3e don unryth. 

So unkendely with cordys to bynd me here ; 
And thus to falle on me be nyth, 

As thow I were a thevys fere. 
Many tyme beforn 50W I dede apere ; 

Withinne the temple sen me 3e have. 
The lawys of God to teche and lere, 

To hem that wele here sowlys sawe. 

Wy dede 30 not me dysprave, 

And herd me preche, both lowd and lowe ? 
But now as wood men 30 gynne to rave. 

And do thyng that 36 notwth knove. 
GamalyeL Serys, I charge 30W not o word more this nyth. 

But onto Cayphas in hast loke 30 hym lede i 



$86 COVENTRY HT6TEBIES. 

Have hym forth with gret dyspyte, 
And to his wordys take 36 non hede. 

Here the Jewys lede Cryst oute of the place with gret cry 
and noyscy some drawyng Cryst forward and some bakwardj 
and so ledyng forth with here weponys alofte^ and lytys 
brennyng. And in the mene tyme Marye Magdalene xal 
rennyn to oure Lady, and telle here of cure Lordys takyngj 
thus seyngf 

Maria May delene. O, inmaculate modyc, of alle women most meke ! 

O devowtest, in holy medy tacyon evyr abydjmg ! 
The cawse, Liady, that I to 30ur person seke. 

Is to wetyn yf 36 heryn ony tydyng 
Of 30ur swete sone, and my reverent Lord Jhesu, 

That was 30ur dayly solas, — 30ur gostly consolacyon ! 
Mary. I wold 3e xuld telle me, Mawdelyn, and 30 knew, 

ffor to here of hym it is aUe myn aflFeccyon. 

Maria Magdalene. I wdd fayn telle, Lady,, and I myth for 
wepyag. 

For sothe. Lady, to the Jewys he is solde ; 
With cordys thei have hym bownde.and have hym in kepyng. 

The hym bety spetously, and have hym fast in holde. 
Maria Virgo. A ! A ! A ! how myn hert is colde ! 

A ! hert hard as ston, how mayst thou lest ? 
Whan these sorweful tydyngys are the told. 

So wold to God, herty that thou mytyst brest. 

A 1 Jhesu 1 Jhesu ! Jhesu 1 Jhesu ! 

Why xuld 3e sofere this trybulacyon and advercyt^ ? 
How may thei fynd in here hertys 30W to pursewe, 

That nevyr trespacyd in no maner degr^ ? 
For nevyr th}mg but that was good thowth 3e, 

Wherfore than xuld 3e sofer this gret peyn ? 
I suppoce veryly it is for the tresspace of me. 

And I wyst that myn hert xuld cleve on tweyn. 



THE BETRAYING OF CHRIST. 287 

ffor these langowrys may I susteyn. 

The swerd of sorwe hath so thyrlyd my meende ; 
Alas ! what may I do ? alas ! what may I seyn ? 

These prongys myn herte asondyr thei do rende. 

O ffiulyr of hefhe ! wher ben al thi behestys 

That thou promysyst me, whan a modyr thou me made ? 

Thi blyssyd sone I bare betwyx tweyn bestys, 
And now the bxyth colour of his face doth fieule. 

O good fadyr ! why woldyst that thin owyn dere sone xal sofre 
al this? 
And dede he nevyr a3ens thi precept, but evyr was obedyent ; 
And to every creature most petyful, most jentyl, and benygn 
i-wys. 
And now for alle these kendnessys is now most shameful 
8chent« 

Why wolt thou, gracyous Fadyr, that it xal be so? 

May man not ellys be savyd be non other kende ? 
3et, Lord Fadyr, than that xal comforte myn wo, 

Whan man is savyd be my chylde, and browth to a good 
ende. 

Now, dere sone, syn thou hast evyr be so ful of marcy, 
That wylt not spare thiself for the love thou hast to man ; 

On cdle mankend now have thou pety, 

And also thynk on thi modyr, that hevy woman. 



XXIX. KING HEROD. 



doctor. O thou altitude of al gostly ryches ! 
O thou incomprehensibele of grete excyllence f 
O thou luminarye of pure lyghtnes ! 

Shete oute thi bemys ontyl this audyens. 

SecunduB doctor. O fill Altissixni ! clepyd by eternalyt^ ! 

Hele this congregacion with the salve of thi passyon ! 
And we prey the, Spiritus paraclyt^ ! 

With the fiyre of thi love to slake alle detraocion. 

PrimuB doctor. To the pepyl not lemyd I stonde as a techer, 

Of this processyon to 3eve informacion ; 
And to them that be lemyd, as a gostly precher. 

That in my rehersayl they may have delectacion. 

Secundua doctor. Welcome of the aposteyls, the gloryous qwere, 
flFyrst Petyr jour prynce and eke jour presydent, 

And Andrewe jour half brother, togedyr in ffere, 
That ffyrst ffowlyd Cryst be on assent. 

PrimuB doctor. O je tweyn luminaryes, Jamys and John ! 

Contynually brennyng as bryght as the sonn bem ! 
With the chene of charyt^, bothe knyt in on, 

And offeryd of jour modyr to Cryst in Jherusalem. 

Secundum doctor. Welcome, Phelypp, that convertyd Samaryan I 
And convertyd the tresorere of the qwene Cabdas ! 



KING HEROD. 289 

With Jamys the lesser, that apud Jherosoljrman 
Was made fyrst patryarke, by tlie ordenauns of Cephas. 

Primus dociar. Heyl, Mathew the apostel and also Evangelyst I 
That was clepyd to the fflok of gostly conversacion 

ffrom thyrknes of concyens that 30 were in (Test, 
With Bertylmew that ffled alie carnalle temptacion. 

Secundus doctor. Heyl, Sjrmeon Zelotes ! thus be 3our name. 
And Judas, that bothe wel lovyd oure Lord ! 

Therffore 3e have bothe joye and game, 
Wher nevyr is sstryflf but good acorde. 

Primus doctor. Heyl, Poul, grett doctour of the ffeyth. 

And vessel chosyn be trewe eleccion ! 
Heyl Thomas, of whom the gospel seyth, 

In Crystys wounde was 30ur refleccion ! 

Secundus doctor. Heyl, John Baptyst, most sovereyn creature 
That evyr was born be naturalle conseyvyng ! 

And hyest of prophetys, as wytnessyth Scrypture ; 
Heyl voys that in desert was allewey cryeng ! 

fVhat tyme that procession is enteryd into the place^ and 
the Herotvdys takyn his schctffulde^ and Pylat and jtnnas and 
Cayphas here schqffaldys ; also than come ther an exposytourj 
in doctorys wede^ thus seyngj 

Contemplacio. Sofreynes and frendys, 3e mut alle be gret with 
gode; 

Grace, love, and charyt^ evyr be 30U among ; 
The maydenys sone preserve 30U that for man deyd on rode ; 

He that is o God in personys thre, defende 30U fro 30ur fon ! 

Be the leve and soferauns of allemythty God, 

We intendyn to procede the matere that we lefte the last 
3ere ; u 



9Q0 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Wherefore we beseche 50W that 3our wyllys be good. 
To kepe the passyon in 30ur mende that xal be shewyd here. 

The last 3ere we shewyd here how oure Lord for love of man 
Cam to the cety of Jherusalem mekely his deth to take ; 

And how he made his mawnd^, his body 3evyng than, 
To his apostelys evyr with us to abydyn for mannys sake. 

In that mawnd he was betrayd of Judas, that hym solde 
To the Jewys for xxx^^ platys to delyvyr hym that nyth. 

With swerdys and gleyvys to Jhesu they come with the tretour 
bolde, 
And toke hym amonges his apostelys about myndnyth. 

Now wold we procede, how he was browth than 
Befom Annas and Cayphas, and sy the befom Pylate : 

And so forth in his passyon how mekely he toke it for man, 
Besekyng 30U for mede of 30ur soulys to take good hede 
theratte. 

Here the Herowndys xal shewe hymselfand speke. 

Herodes Rex. Now sees of 3our talkyng, and gevyth lordly 
audyence ; 

Not o wmti I charge 30W, that ben here present. 
Noon so hardy to presume in my hey presence 

To onlose hese lyppys ageyne myn intent. 
I am Herowde, of Jewys kyng most reverent, 

The lawys of Mahownde my powere xal fortefye; 
Reverens to that Lord of grace moost excyllent, 

ffor be his powere alle thinge doth multyplye. 

3ef ony Crystyn be so hardy his feyth to denye. 

Or onys to erre ageyns his lawe ; 
On gebettys with cheynes I xal hangyn hym heye, 

And with wylde hors tho traytorys xal I drawe. 



KINO HEROD. S^l 

To kylle a thowsand Crystyn I gyf not an haWe ; 

To se hem hangyn or brent to me is very plesauns, 
To dry vyn hem into doongenys dragonys to knawe, 

And to rendo here flesche and bonys onto here sostenauns. 

John the Baptyst crystenyd Cryst, and so he dede many on, 

Therfore myself dede hym brynge o dawe ; 
It is I that dede hym kylle, I telle }ou everychon, 

flfor and he had go forth he xuld a dystroyd our lawe. 
Where as Crystyn appery th to me is gret greTftmis, 

It peyny th myn hert of tho tretowrys to here ; 
ffor the lawys of Mahownde I have in govemawns, 

The whiche I wele kepe, that Lord hath no pere ! 
ffor he is God most prudent ! 
Now I charge 30U, my lordys, that ben here, 
Yf any Crystyn doggys here doth aperp, 
Bryng tho tretores to my hey powere, 

And thei xal have sone jewgiement 

Primus miles. My soverejm Lord, heyest of excillens. 

In 30U alle jewgement is termynabyle ; 
Alle Crystyn dogges that do not here dyligens, 

3e put hem to peynes that ben inportable. 
Secundus tnUes. Nothing in 30U may be more comendable, 

As to dysstroye tho traytores that erre 
Ageyn oure lawys, that ben most profytable ; 

Be rythwysnesse that lawe 3e must profferre. 

Rex Herowdes. Now^ be gloryous Mahownd, my sove- 
reyn Savyour, 
These proraessys I make, as I am trewe knyth ! 
Thoo that excede his lawys by ony errour. 

To the most xamefuUest deth I xal hem dyth. 
But o thyng is sore in my gret delyte, 

Ther is on Jhesus of Na3areth, as men me tellyth ; 

u2 



S92 COVENTBY MYSTERIES. 

Of that man I desyre to han a sy thte, 

flfor with many gret wondrys oure lawe he fellyth. 

The son of God hymself he callyth. 

And kyng of Jewys he seyth is he, 
And many woundrys of hym he fallyth — 

My hert desyryth hym for to se. 
Seres, yf that he come in this cowntr^, 

With oure jurresdyccion loke 30 aspye. 
And anon that he be brouth onto me. 

And the trewth myself than xal trye. 

Primus miles. Tomorwe my jom^ I xal begynne. 

To seke Jhesus with my dew dilygens ; 
3yf he come 30ur provynce withinne. 

He xal not askape 30ur hey presens. 
Secundus miles. Myn sovereyn, this is my cowncel that 
3e xal take, 

A man that is bothe wyse and stronge, 
Thurwe alle Galyl^ a serge to make, 

Yf Jhesu be enteryd 30ur pepyl among, 
Corrette hese dedys that be do wronge, 

iFor his body is widyr 30ur bayle. 
As men talkyn hem among. 

That he was born in Galyl^. 
Hex. Thanne of these materys, serys, take hede ; 

flbr a whyle I wele me rest, 
Appetyderequyryth me so indede. 

And flfesyk tellyth me it is the best. 



XXX. THE TRIAL OF CHRIST. 



Here xal a nuasanger com into the place remiyng and 
crbfng *' Tydyngys I tydynges I " and 90 rownd abowth 
the place, ^^ Jhesus of Nazareth is take I Jhesus of Naza- 
reth is take ! " and forthwith heylyng the prynces, thus 
seyng, 

Massanger. AUe heyle, my lonlys, princys of prestys ! 

Sere Cayphas and sere Annas^ lordys of the lawe ! 
Tydynges I brynge 30U, reseyve them in 3our brestys j 

Jhesus of Na3areth is take, therof 3e may be fawe I 
He xal be browth hedyr to 30U anon j 

I telle 30U trewly with a gret rowth, — 
Whan he was take I was hem among, 

And ther was I ner to kachyd a clowte. 

Malcus bar a lanterne and put hym in pres, 

Anoon he had a towche and of went his ere ! 
Jhesus bad his dyscyple put up his swerd and ces, 

And sett Malcus ere ageyn as hool as it was ere ! 
So mot y the, methowut it was a strawnge syth 1 

Whan we cam fyrst to hym, he cam us ageyn, 
And haskyd whom we sowth that tyme of nyth ? 

We seyd Jhesus of Na3areth, we wolde have hjrm fayn. 

And he seyd, " it is I that am here in 30ur syth ;" 
With that word we ovyrthrowyn bakward everychone. 

And some on her bakkys lyeng upryth, 

But standyng upon fote manly ther was not on. 



294 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Cryst stode on his fete as meke as a lorn, 

And we loyn stylle lyche ded men tyl he bad us ryse ; 
Whan we were up, fast handys we leyd hym upon, 

But 3et roe thought I was not plesyd with the newe gyse. 

Therfore takyth now 30ur cowncel and avyse 30U rytli 
weyl. 

And beth ryth ware that he make 30U not amat ; 
fibr be my thryfte I dare sweryn at this seyl, 

3e xal fynde hym a strawnge watt ! 

Here Inyng ihei Jhesui btfom Anaa% and Cgyphae^ 
and on xal seyn tkuSj 

Lo ! lo ! lordys, here is the roan 

That 30 sent us fore. 
Annae, Therfore wq cone 30U thanke than, 

And reward 30 xal have the more. 

Jhesus, thou art wel(M)me hedyr to oure presens ; 

Ful oftyn tymes we han the besyly do sowth ; 
We payd to thi dyscyple for the thretty pens. 

And as an ox or an hors we trewly the bowth. 
Therfore now art oure as thou standyst us before ; 

Sey, why thou ast tipbelyd us and subvertyd oure lawe ? 
Thou hast ofte concludyd us, and so thou hast do more, 

Wherfore it were ful nedful to bryng the a dawe. 

Cajfphaa. What arn thi dysciplys that folwyn the aboute ? 

And what is thi doctryne that thou dost preche ? 
Telle roe now somewhath, and bryng us out of doute. 

That we may to othere men thi prechyng forth teche. 
JhesuB. Al tymes that I have precbyd, opyn it was don 

In the synagog or in the temple, where that alle 
Jewys com : 
Aske hem what I have seyd, and also what I have don ; 

Thei con telle the my wordys, aske hero everychone. 



THE TBUL OF GHBttr. 806 

Frimua Judeui, What thou, fela ? to whom spekyst thou ? 

Xalt thou 80 speke to a buschop? 
Thou xalt have on the cheke, I make a vow. 

And 3et therto a knok* 

Here he xal smyte Jheeus on the cheke. 

JheeuB. Yf I have seyd amys, 

Therof wylaiesse thou mayst here ; 
And yf I have seyd but weyl in this, 

Tho[u] dost amys me to dere I 

Atmae. Serys, takyth hed now to this man. 

That he dystroye not oure lawe ; 
And brynge 30 wyttnesse a3ens hym that he can. 

So that he may be browt of dawe. 
Primus doctor. Sere, this I herd hym with his owyn 
mowth seyn,— — 

Brekyth down this temple without delay. 
And I xal settynt up ageyn 

As hool as it was, by the thrydde day. 

Secundus doctor. 3a, ser, and I herd hym seyh also 

That he was the Sone of God ; 
And 3et many a fole wenyth so, 

I durst leyn theron myn hed. 
3a ! 3a ! and I herd hjrm preche meche thyng. 

And a3ens oure lawe everydel ; 
Of wheche it were longe to make rekenjmg, 

To tellyn alle at this seel. 

Cayphcts. What seyst now, Jhesus ? whi answeryst not ? 

Heryst not what is seyd a3ens the ? 
Spek man, spek ! spek, thou fop ! 

Hast thou scorn to speke to me ? 
Heryst not in how many thynges thei the acuse ? 



296 COYENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Now I charge the and conjure, be the Sonne and the mone. 
That thou telle us and thou be Goddys sone 1 

Jhetus. Goddys sone I am, I sey not nay to the ! 

And that 36 alle xal se domys-day, 
Whan the sone xal come in gret powere and magest^^ 

And deme the qweke and dede, as I the say. 
Cayphat. A ! out ! out ! alias 1 what is this ? 

Heryth ^e not how he blasfemyth God ? 
What nedyth us to have more wy tness ? 

Here ^e ban herd alle his owyn word ! 
Thynk 30 not be is worthy to dey ? 

Et clamabant omnes. **^ }ys ! }ys! }ijs! alle weseye 
he is worthy to dey^ 3a / 3a / 3a /" 

AwMM. Takyth hym to 30W and betyth hym som del, 
ffor hese blasfemyng at this sel. 

Here thei xal bete Jhesus about the bed and the body^ 
and qn/ttyn in his face^ and pullyn hym down, and 
settyn hym on a stolj and castyn a cloth ovyr his face ; 
and thefyrst xal seyn. 

Primus Judteus. A ! felawys, beware what 3e do to this 

man, 
ffor be prophecye weyl kan. 

Secundus JudtBUs. That xal be asayd be this batte, 
Wliat thou, Jhesus ? ho 3aff the that ? 

Etpercuciet stfper caput. 

Tertius JudoBus. Whar ? whar ? now wole I 
Wetyn bow he can prophecy. 

Ho was that? 
QjMortus JudtEus. A 1 and now wole I a newe game 

begynne, 
That we mon pley at alle that arn hereinne^ 



THE TRIAL OF CHRIST. 297 

Whele and pylle ! whele and pylle ! 
Comyth to halle ho so wylle. 
Ho was that ? 

Here xal the woman come to Jewys and seyn. 

Prima anciUa. What, serys, how take 36 on with this 

man? 
Se 36 not on of hese dysciplys how he beheldyth 30U than. 

Here xal the tother woman set/n to Peter, 

Secunda anciUa. A ! good man me semyth be the, 
That thou on of hese dysciplys xulde be. 
Petrue, A ! woman, I sey nevyr er this man, 
Syn that this werd fyrst began. 

Et cantabit gallus. 

Prima anciUa. What? thou mayst not sey nay, thou 

art on of hese men. 
Be thi face wel we may the ken. 
Petms. Woman, thou seyst amys of me j 
I know hym not ; so mote I the. 
Primus Judceus* A ! fela myn, wel met, 
For my cosynys ere thou of smet ; 
Whan we thi mayster in the 3erd toke. 
Than alle thi ffelawys hym forsoke ; 
And now thou mayst not hym forsake. 
For thou art of Galyl^, I undyrtake. 
Petrus, Sere, I knowe hym not, be hym that made me ! 

And 3e wole me beleve ffbr an oth, 
I take record of alle this compayn^. 

That I sey to 30W is soth. 

Et cantabit gallus. And than Jhesus xal lokyn on 
Petyr, and Petyr xal wepyn^ and than he xalgon out and 
seyn, 



298 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

A I weel away ! weel away 1 fals hert, why wylt thou not 
brest^ 

Syn thi maystyr so cowardly thou hast forsake ? 
Alas ! qwher xal I now on erthe rest, 

Tyl he of his mercy to grace wole me take ? 
I have forsake my mayster and my lord Jbesu 

Thre tymes, as he tolde me that I xuld do the same ; 
Wherfore I may not have sorwe anow, 

I syuful creature am so meche to blame. 

Whan I herd the cok crowyn, he kest on me a loke. 
As who seythy ** bethynke the what I seyd before ?** 

Alas, the tyme that I evyr hym forsoke ! 
And so wyl I thynkyn fcom hens evyrmore. 

Cayphas. Massangere! Massangere! 

Masaangere. Here^ lord, here ! 

Cayphcu. Massanger, to Pylat in hast thou xalt gon, 

And sey hym we comawnde us in word and in dede ; 
And prey hym that he be at the mot-halle anoon, 

ffor we ban gret matere that he must nedes spede. 
In hast now go thi way. 

And loke thou tery nowth. 
MoBsanger. It xal be do, lord, be this day, 

I am as why t as thought. 

Here Pylat syttyth in his skaffald, and the mas- 
Sanger knelyth to hym, thus seyngj 

Al heyl ! sere Pylat, that semly is to se I 

Prynce of al this Jur^, and kepere of the lawe ! 

My lord busshop Cayphas comawndyd hym to the. 
And prayd the to be at the mot-halle by the day da we. 

Pylat. Go thi way, praty masanger, and comawnde me 
also; 
I xal be there in hast, and so thou mayst say : 



THIS TRIAL OF CHRIST. 899 

Be the oure ot prime I xal comyn hem to^ 
I tery no lenger, no make no delay.. 

Here the massanger camit a^en and bryngit an an- 
iwere, thm sejfHg, 

Massanger. Al heyl ! royn lordys, and buschoppys, and 
princys of the Utwe ! 
Ser Pylai comawndy th hym to 5011, and bad me to 30U 
say. 
He wole be at the mot-halle in h^at aone aft^ the day 
dawe^ 
He wold 30 xuld be ther be prime withouth longer delay. 
Cayphas. Now weyl mote thou fture^,. my good page ; 
Take thou this for thi massage. 

Here erUeryth Judas onto the Juwys thus seytig, 

Judas. I Judas have synnyd and treson have don, 

flbr I have betrayd this rythful blood ; 
Here is 3our mony a3en, alle and some, 

ffor sorwe and tliowth I am wax wood^ 
Annas. What is that to us ? avyse the now. 

Thou dedyst with us covnawnt make ; 
Thou seldyst hym us as hors or kow, 

Therfore thin owyn dedys thou roust take ! 

Than Judas castyth down the mony, and goth and 
hangyth hymself. 

Cayphas. Now, serys, the nyth is passyd, the day is 
come; 

It were tyme this man had his jewgement ; 
And Pylat abydyth in the mot-halle alone, 

Tyl we xuld this man present ; 
And therfore go we now forth with hym in hast. 

Primus Jtukcus. It xal be don and that in short spas. 



800 COVENTBT MT8TEBIBS. 

Secundum JwjUbus. 3a ! but loke yf he be bownd ryth wel 

and fast. 
Tertius JuaUeus. He is saffanow ! go we ryth a good pas ! 

Here thei ledyn Jhesu abowt the place tyl thei come 
to the halle. 

Cayphas. Sere Pylat, takyght hede to this thyDg ! 

Jhesus we han befom the browth, 
Wheche owre lawe doth down bryng, 

And mekyl schame he hath us wrowth. 
Annas, ffrom this cetye into the lond of Galyl^, 

He hath browth oure lawys neyr into confusyon, 
^^th hese craftys wrowth be nygramancye, 

Shewyth to the pepyl be fals sjrmulacyon. 

Primus doctor. 3a ! 3et^ ser, another and werst of alle ! 

A3en8 Sesar, oure emperour that is so fre, 
Kjmg of Jewys he doth hym calle, 

So oure emperoures power nowth xuld be ! 
Secundus doctor. SerePylat, we kannot telle half the blame 

That Jhesus in oure country hath wrowth $ 
Therfore we charge the in the emperores name. 

That he to the deth in hast be browth ! 

PykU. What seyst to these compleyntys, Jhesu ? 

These pepyl hath the sore acusyd, 
Because thou bryngyst up lawys newe, 

That in oure days were not usyd. 
Jhesus. Of here accusyng me rowth nowth. 

So that thei hurt not here soulys ne non mo. 
I have nowth 3et founde that I have sowth, 

ffor my faderys wyl ffbrth must I go. 

Ptflat. Jhesus, be this than I trowe thou art a kyng, 
And the sone of God thou art also,^- 



THE TRIAL OF CHRIST. 801 

Lord of erth and of alle thing, — ^ 

Telle me the trowth, if it be so ! 
Jhesiis. In hefne is knowyn my faderys intent, 

And in this werlde I was born ; 
Be my fadyr I was hedyr sent, 

For to seke that was forlorn. 
Alle that me heryn and in me belevyn, 

And kepyn here feyth stedfastly ; 
Thow thei weryn dede I xal them recuryn. 

And xal them bryng to blysse endlesly. 

Pilate. Lo ! serys, now }e an erde this man, how thynk }e? 

Thynke }e not alle be 30ure reson? 
But as he seyth it may wel be. 

And that xulde be this incheson. 
I fynde in hym non obecyon 

Of errour, nor treson, ne of no manor gylt ; 
The lawe wele in no conclusyon 

Withowte defawth he xuld be spylt. 

Primus doctor. Sere Pylat, the lawe restyth in the. 

And we knowe veryly his gret trespas ; 
To the emperour this mater told xal be, 

Yf thou lete Jhesus thus from the pas ! 

Pylat, Serys, than telle me o thyng, 
What xal be his acusyng ? 
Annas, Sere, we telle the altogedyr, 
flTor his evyl werkys we browth hym hedyr ; 
And yf he had not an evyl doere be. 
We xuld not a browth hym to the. 
Pylat. Takyth hym than after 30ur sawe, 
And demyth hym aftyr 30ur lawe. 
Cayphas. It is not lefTul to us, 3e seyn, 
No raaner man for to slen ; 



SOS COVBNTRT MTftTBiRIBS. 

The cawse why we bryng hym to the, 

That he xuld not oure kyng be. 

Weyl thou knowyst kysg we have son. 

But oure Emperour alon. 

I^lai. Jhesu, thou art kyng of Jur£? 

JhewB, So thou seyst now to me. 

Pylat. Tel me than, where sb tlii kyngham ? 

Jhesus. My kyngham is not in this world, 

I telle the at o word. 

Yf my kyngham here had be, 

I xuld not a be dely veryd to the. 

Pglai. Seres, avyse 50W as je kan. 

I can fynde no defawth in tiiis man. 

Annas* Sere, here is a giet record take hed therto, 

And knowyng gret myschef in this man ; 
And not only in o day or to^ 

It is many 3erys syn he began. 
We kan telle the tyme where and whan. 

That many a thowsand tumyd hath he. 
As alle this pepylle record weyl kan. 

From hens into the lond of Galyl^. 

JSt ckmabunt ^' 3a / 3a / 3a /*' 

Pilot. Serys, of thyng than gyf me relacyon, 

If Jhesus were outborn in the lond of Galylye, 
ffor we han no poer, ne no jurediccyon. 

Of no man of that contr^. 
Therfore the trewth ^e telle me. 

And another wey I xal provyde, — 
If Jhesus were born in that countr^. 

The jugement of Herowdys he must abyde. 

Cayphas. Sere, as I am to the lawe trewly sworn. 
To telle the trewth I have no fer ; 



THE TRIAL OF CHKIST. SOS 

In Galelye I know that he was born, 

I can telle in what place and where. 
A3ens this no man may answere, 

flbr he was bom in Bedlem Jud^ ; 
And this 30 knowe, now alle I have don here, 

That it stant in the lond of Oalelye. 

PjflaL Weyl, serys, syn that I knowe that it is so, 

The trewth of this I must nedys se : 
I undyrstand ryth now what is to do, 

The jugement of Jhesu lyth not to me. 
Herowde is kyng of that country. 

To jewge that regyon in lenth and in brede ; 
The jurysdyccyon of Jhesu now han must he, 

Therfore Jhesu in hast to hym 3e lede; 
In faalle the hast that 3e may spede, 

Lede hym to the Herownde anon present. 
And sey I comawnde me, with worde and dede. 

And Jhesu to hjnn that I have sent. 
Primus doctor. This erand in hast sped xal be. 

In alle the hast that we can do; 
We xal not tary in no degr^, 

Tyl the Herowdys presens we come to. 

Here thei take Jliesu and lede hym in gret hast to 
the Herowde; and the Herowdys scafald xal unclose^ 
shewyng Herowdes in astat, alle tfie Jewys knelyng^ 
except Annas and Cayphas^ thei xal stondyn, etc. 

Primus doctor. Heyl, Herowde, most excyllent kyng I 

We am comawndyd to thin presens, — 
Pylat sendyth the be us gretyng, 

And chargyth us, be oure obedyens, 
Secundus doctor. That we xuld do oure dylygens 

To bryng Jhesus of Na3areth onto the. 



804 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

And chargyth us to make no resystens, 

Becawse he was bom in this country. 
Armas. We knowe he hath wrowtii gret fol^ 

Ageyns the lawe shewyd present ; 
Tberfore Pylat sent hym onto the. 

That thou xuldyst gyf hym jugement. 
Herowde Rex, Now, be Mahound my God of Grace ! 

Of Pylat this is a dede ful kende ; 
I forgyf hym now is gret trespace, 

And schal be his frend withowtyn ende. 
Jhesus to me that he wole sende, 

I desyred ful sore hym for to se ; 
Gret ese in this Pylat xal fynde, 

And, Jhesus, thou art welcome to me ! 
Primus Judoeus. My sovereyn lord, this is the case, 

The gret falsnesse of Jhesu is opynly knawe ; 
Ther was nevyr man dede so gret trespas, 

ffor he hath almost destroyd oure lawe. 
Secundus Judceus. 3a ! be fals crafte of soserye, 

Wrowth opynly to the pepylle aUe, 
And be sotyl poyntes of nygramancye, 

Many thowsandys fro oure lawe be falle. 
Cephas. Most excellent kyng, je must take hede. 

He wol dystroye alle this country, bothe elde and 3yng ; 
Yf he ten monthis more procede. 

Be his meraclys and fals prechyng, 
He bryngyth the pepyl in gret fonnyng, 

And seyth dayly among hem alle. 
That he is lord and of the Jewys kyng. 

And the sone of God he doth hym calle. 
Rex Herowde. Serys, alle these materys I have herd sayd, 

And meche more than 50 me telle ; 
Alletogedyr thei xal be layde, 

And I wyl take thereon cowncelle. 



THE TRIAL OF CHRIST. SOS 

Jhesus, thou art welcome to me ; 

I kan Pylat gret thank for his sendjng; 
I have desyryd ful longe the to se. 

And of thi meracles to have knowyng« 

It is told me thou dost many a wondyr tbyog, 

Crokyd to gon and blynd men to sen. 
And thei that ben dede gevyst hem levyng, 

And makyst lepers fayre and hool to ben. 
These am wondyr werkys wrougth of the» 

Be what wey I wolde knowe the trew sentens« 
Now Jhesu, I pray the, lete me se 

O meracle wrougth iu my presens. 
In hast now do thi dylygens. 

And peraventure I wyl shew favour to the ; 
ffbr now thou art in my presens, 

Thyn lyf and deth here ly th in me. 

And here Jhesus xal not speke no word to the Herowde. 

Jhesus, why spekyst not to thi kyng ? 

What is the cawse thou standyst so stylle ? 
Thou nowyst I may deme alle thyng,-— 

Thyn lyf and deth ly th at my wylle ! 

What ? spek Jhesus, and telle me why 

This pepyl do the so here acuse ? 
Spare not, but telle me now on he , 

How thou canst thiself excuse. 
CaypJiaa. Loo ! serys, this is of hym a false sotylte. 

He wyl not speke but whan he lyst ; 
Thus he dyscey vyth the pepyl in eche degr^ ; 

He is ful fals, 30 veryly tryst. 
Rex Herowde. What, thou onhangyd harlot, why wylt 
thou not speke ? 

Hast thou skorne to speke onto thi kyng ? 

X 



806 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Becawse thou dost oure lawys breke, 

I trowe thou art aferd of oure talkyng. 
Annas, Nay, he is not aferde, but of a fals wyle, 

Becawse we xuld not hym acuse ; 
If that he answerd 30W ontylle. 

He knowyth he kan not hymself excuse. 
Bex Herowde. What? spek I say, thou foulyng, evyl 
mot thou fare i 

Loke up, t^e devyl mote the cheke 1 
Seres, bete his body with scorges bare. 

And asay to nmke hym for to speke ! 
Pfimus Judceus. It xal be do withoutyn teryeng, — 

Come on, thou tretour, evyl mot thou the ! 
Whylt thou not speke onto oure kyng? 

A new lesson we xal lere the ! 

Here Iheipulle of Jhesus clot his, and betyn hym with 
whyppys. 

Secundus Judasus. Jhesus, thi bonys we xal not breke. 

But we xal make the to skyppe ! 
Thou hast lost thi tonge, thou mayst not speke. 

Thou xalt asay now of this whippe. 
Teriius Judatia. Serys, take these whyppys in 30ur honde. 

And spare not whyl thei last ; 
And bete this tretoure that here doth stonde, 

I trowe that he wyl speke in hast. 

And qwhan thei han betyn hym tyl he is alle blody^ 
than the Heroumd seyth, 

Sees, seres, I comawnde 50U be name of the 
devyl of helle 1 
Jhesus, thynkyst this good game ? 
Thou art strong, to su£Pyr schame. 
Thou baddyst levyr be betyn lame. 

Than thi defi&wtys for to telle. 



THE TRIAL OF CHRIST. 807 

But I wyl not thi body alle spyl, 

Nor put it here into more peyn ; 
Serys, takyth Jhesus at 30ur owyn wyl, 

And lede hym to Pylat horn ageyn. 
Crete hym weyl, and telle hym serteyn, 

Alle my good frenchep xal he have ; 
I gyf hym powere of Jhesus, thus 30 hym seyn. 

Whether he wole hym dampne or save. 
Primus doctor. Sere, at jour request it zal be do, 

We xal lede Jhesus at jour demawde; 
And delyvyr hym Pylat onto. 

And telle hym alle as je comawnde. 

Here enterytk Satan into the place in the most 
orryhle wy$e, and qwyl that he pleyth, thei xal don on 
Jhesus clothis and overest a whyte clothe, and ledyn 
hym ahowth the place, and than to Pylat, be the tyme 
thai hese wyf hath pleyd. 



xS 



XXXL PILATE'S WIFE'S DREAM. 



Sathan. Thus I reyne as a rochand with a rynggyng 
rowth. 

As a devyl most dowty dred is my dynt j 
Many a thowsand develys to me do thei lowth, 

Brennyng in fiamys as fyre out of fiynt ! 
Ho so serve me, Sathan, to sorwe is he sent, 

With dragonys in doungenys and develys fu derke. 
In bras and in bronston the brethellys be brent, 

That wene in this werd my wyl for to werke ! 

With myschef on moolde here membrys I merke, 

That japyn with Jhesus that Judas solde ; 
Be he nevyr so crafty nor conyng clerke, 

I harry them to heile as tretour bolde. 
But ther is o thyng that grevyth me sore. 

Of a prophete that Jhesu men calle ; 
He peynyth me every day more and more, 

With his holy meraclis and werkys alle. 

I had hym onys in a temptacyon. 

With glotenye, with covetyse, and veynglorye, 
I hasayd hym be alle weys that I cownde don, 

And uttyrly he refusyd hem, and gan me defye. 
That rebuke that he gaf me xal not be unqwyt, 

Somwhat I have begonne, and more xal be do ; 
ffor alle his barfot goyng, fro me xal he not skyp. 

But my derk dongeon I xal bryngyn hym to. 



PILATE'S WIFE'S DREAM. 309 

I have do made redy his cros that he xal dye upon. 
And thre nayles to takke hym with that he xal not 
styrte; 

Be he nev}T so holy he xal not fro me gpn, 
But with a sharpe spere he xal be smet to the herte. 

And sythyn he xal come to helle be he nevyr so stowte, 
And 3et I am aferd and he come he wole do som wrake; 
Therfore I xal go warnyn helle that thei loke abowte, 
That thei make redy chenys to bynd hym with in lake. 

Helle ! Helle ! make redy, for here xal come a gest, 
Hedyr xal come Jhesus that is clepyd Goddys sone, 
And he xal ben here be the oure of none, 
And with the here he xal wone. 

And han ful shrewyd rest. 

Here xal a devyl spekyn in helle. 

Demon. Out upon the 1 we conjure the. 
That nevyr in helle we may hym se, 
ffor and he onys in helle be, 

He xal oure power brest. 
Sathan. A ! A ! than have I go to ferre ; 

But som wyle help, I have a shrewde tome^ 
My game is wers than I wend here, 

I may seyn my game is lorne. 

Lo ! a wyle 3et have a kast, 

If I myth Jhesus lyf save, 
Helle gatys xal be sperd fast, 

And kepe stylle alle tho I have. 

To Pylatys wyff I wele now go. 

And sche is aslepe a bed ful fast. 
And byd here withowtyn wordys mo. 

To Pylat that sche send in hast. 



810 COVENTRY HTSTERIES. 

I xal asay, and this wol be 

To bryng Pylat in belef ; 
Withinne a whyle, 36 xal se, 

How my craft I wole go pref. 

Here xal the devyl gon to Pylatys wyf^ the carteyn 
drawyn as she lyth in hedde ; and he xal no dene make ; 
but she xal sone after that he is come in^ makyn a rewly 
noyse, commyng and rennyng of the schctffaldf and her 
shert and here kyrtyl in here hand, and sche xal come 
befom Pylat leke a mad woman, seyng thus. 

Uxor PUaty. Pylat, I charge the that thou take hede ! 

Deme not Jhesu, but be his frende ! 
3yf thou jewge hym to be dede. 

Thou art dampnyd withowtyn ende ! 
A fend aperyd roe befom. 

As I lay in my bed slepyng &st ; 
Sethyn the tyme that I ¥ra8 bom 

Was I nevyr so sore agast ! 

As wylde fyre and thondyr blast. 

He cam cryeng onto me ; 
He seydy thd that bete Jhesu or bownd hym fiast, 

Withowtyn ende dampnyd xal be I 

Therfore a wey herein thou se. 

And lete Jhesu from the dere pace ; 
The Jewys thei wole begyle the. 

And put on the alle the trespace. 

Pylat. Gramercy, myn wyf, for evyr je be trewe ; 

30ur cowncel is good and evyr hath be I 
Now to 30iur chawmer 30 do sewe. 

And alle xal be weyl, dame, as 30 xal se. 



XXXII. THE CONDEMNATION AND 



CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 



Here the Jetvys bryng Jhesus a^en to Pylat. 

Primus doctor. Sere Fylat, gode tydandys thou here 
of me, — 

Of Herowd the kyng thou hast good wyl ; 
And Jheeus he sendyth ajen to the^ 

And byddyth the chese hym to save or spylle 1 

Becundus doctor. 3a ! ser, alle the poer lyth now in the^ 
And thou knowyst oure feyth he hath nere schent : 

Thou knowyst what myschef therof may be^ 
We charge the to gyf hym jwgement. 

Pylat. Serys, trewly 3e be to blame^ 
Jhesus thus to bete, dyspoyle, or bynde ; 

Or put hym to so gret schame ; 
ffbr no defawth in hym I fynde. 

Ne Herowdys nother to whom I sent 30W, 

Defawte in hym cowde fynde ryth non ; 
But sent hym a3en to me be 30W, 

As 3e knowe wel everychon. 

Therfore undyrstande what I xal say, 
36 knowe the custom b in this londe, 



SIS COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Of 30ur Pasche day that is ner honde. 
What thefF or tretour be in bonde, 
For worchep of that day xal go fre away 
Without any price. 
^Now than me thynkyth it were ryth. 
To lete Jhesus now go q wyte, 
And do to hym no mo dyspyte, — 
I wolde wete what je say. 

Seres, this is myn avyse. 

Here alle thei xul cryeUy *' Nay ! nay ! nay !^ 

Primui doctor. Delyvere us the theff Barabas, 

That for mansclawth presonde was. 

Pylai. What xal I than with Jhesu do ? 

Whether xal he abyde or go ? 

Secundus doctor. Jhesus xal on the cros be don, 

Cruc^igatur we cry echon ! 

Pylat. Seres, what hath Jhesus don amys ? 

Popului elatnabunt. Crucifigatur we sey at onys. 

Pylat, Serys, sy n alMtys^je wolyn so, 

Puttyn Jhesu to wo and peyn ; 
JheJBU a wyle with me xal go, 

I woie hym examyne betwyx us tweyn. 

Here Pylat takyth Jhesu^ and ledyth hym into the 
coumcel houSj and seyth, 

Jhesus, what seyst now ? lete se. 

This matere now thou undyrstonde ; 
In pes thou myth be for me. 

But for thi pepyl of thi londe. 

Busshoppys and prestys of the lawe, 
Thei love the not, as thou mayst se ; 



THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 313 

And the comon pepyl a3en8 the drawe. 
In pes thou myth a be for me,— 

This I telle the pleyn ! 
What seyst, Jhesus ? whi spekest not me to ? 
Knowyst not I have power on the cros the to do, 
And also I have power to lete the forth go ! 

What kanst thou here to seyn ? 

Jhems. On me poer thou hast ryth non, 
But that my fadyr hath grawntyd befom ; 
I cam my fSstderys wyl to fullefylle, 
That mankynd'xuld not spylle. 
He that hath betrayd me to the at this tyme, 
His trespas is more than is thine. 
iVtfittt^ doctor. 3e prynces and maysteres, takyth hed 
and se 

How Pylat in this raatere is favorabyl ; 
And thus oure lawys dystroyd myth be. 

And to us alle unrecurabyl ! 

Here Pylat letyth Jhesus alone and goth into the 
Jewys, and aeyth^ 

Seres, what wole je now with Jhesu do ? 

TTcan'^nde in hym but good ! 
It is my cownce 30 lete hym go, — 

It is rewthe to spylle his blood ! 
Cayphas. Pylat, me thynkyth thou dost gret wrong, 

A3 ens oure lawe thus to fortefye; 
And the pepyl here is so strong, 

Bryngyng the lawful testymonye. 
Annas. 3a ! and thou lete Jhesu fro us pace. 

This we welyn upholdyn alle ; 
Thou xalt answere for his trespas. 

And tretour to the emperour we xal the kalle. 
Pylat. Now than, syn 39 wolne non other weye. 
But in al wyse that Jhesus must deye, 



S14 



COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 



, and hryngit /ij/m, 



Artyse, bryng me watyr, I prey the. 
And what I wole do, 36 xal se. 

Hie unvs afferel aqaam. 
As I wasche with watyr my handys cleiie, 
So gyltles of hese deth I must ben. 
Primus doctor. The blod of hym mut ben 
And on oure cbyldyr aflyr us ! 

Et clamabunt " ja .' ja -' 3a .' " 

Than Pylat goih a-^en to Jhe> 
ikua seyng, 

Lo ! seres, I bryng hym here to 30ur presena. 
That 36 may knowe 1 fynde in hym nou oSens, 
Secundum doctor. Uelyvere hym ! delyvere hym ! aud 

let us go, 
On the Crosse that he were do ! 

Pilat. Seres, wolde 36 30ur kyng I xulde on the croB don ? 
Tertius doctor. Sere, we seyn that we haVe no kyng but 

the emperour alon. 
Pilot. Seres, syn al gatys it must be so, 
We must syt and our office do ; 
Brynge forth to the barre that arn to be dempt. 
And thei xal have here jugement. 

Here thei xal brynge Barabas to the burre, and 
Jhesu, and ij. Jewys in here shertt/s bare-leggyd, and 
Jlieaus standytig at the barre betwyx them; and Annas 
and Cayphas xal gon into the cowncelle hous qwhan 
Pylat syttyth. 

Pylat. Barabas, hold up tlii bond ! 
For here at thi delyvere dost thou stoud. 
ATid he halt up hit hand. 
Serys, qwbat sey 36 of Barabas thef and tretour bold? 
Xal he go fre or he xal be kept in liolde ? 



i 



THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 815 

Primus doctor. Sere, for the solemnytd of oure Pasche day. 
Be oure lawe he xal go fire away. 
Pjflat. Barabas, than I dysmysse the. 
And 3eve the lycens to go fre. 

Et curret. 
Dysmas and Jesmas ther as }e stondys, 
The lawe comawndyth 30U to hold up 30iir hondys ; 
Sere, what sey 3e of these thevys tweyn ? 
Secundus doctor. Sere, thei ben bothe gylty, we seyn. 
Pylat. And what sey 3e of Jhesu of Na3areth ? 
Primus doctor. Sere, we sey he xal be put to deth ! 
Pylat. And kone 3e put a3ens hym no trespas. 
Secundus Doctor. Sere, we wylle alle that he xal be put 
upon the crosse ! 

Et elamabunt omnes voce magna dicenteSj ** ^a! }al ^aP 

Pylat. Jhesu, thin owyn pepyl han dysprevyd, 
Al that I have for the seyd or mevyd ; 
I charge 30U alle at the begynnyng. 

As 36 wole answere me befom. 
That ther be no man xal towche 30ur kyng, 

But yf he be knyght or jentylman bom. 

Fyrst his clothis 3e xal of don. 

And makyn hym nakyd for to be ; 
Bynde hym to a pelere, as sore as 3e mon. 

Than skorge hym with qwyppys that al men may se ! 
Whan he is betyn, crowne hym for 3our kyng ! 
And than to the cros 3e xal hym bryng ! 

And to the crosse thou xalt be fest. 
And on thre naylys thi body xal rest 1 
On xal thorwe thi ryth hand go, 
Anothyr thorwe thi lyfte hand also ; 



II 



S16 COVENTRY MY'STERIES, 

Tlie Ihred xal be sniet thoro botlie thi feet, 

Wheclie nayle titer to be mad ful met© I 

And 3et thou xalt not hange alone. 

But on pyther syde of the xal be on. 

Dysraas now, I Jeme the, 

lliat on liese ryth hand thou xalt be ! 

And Jesmas on the left hand hangyd xal ben, 

On the mowth of Calverye, that men may sen ! 

Here Pylat xal rysytt and yon to his schaffiild, and the 
busshoj>jit/3 u-ifh hym ; and the Jeicys xul cryeforjoy 
with a gret voys, and arryn hym and puUyn of his 
cloihis, andbyndyn hym to a peUre, and akorgyn hym ; 
on seyng thus, 

Primus Judaut. Doth gladly, oure hyng, 
For this U jour first begynnyng ! 

^nd qwhan he is skorgyd, theiput upon ht/m a cloth 
o/syl/{, and settyn hym on a stol, and puttyn a kroune 
of thomys on hese hed with for/fye ; and the Jewys 
knelyug to Cryst, takyng hym a septer and skornyng 
hym, and than thei xalpullyn of the purpyl clothe, and 
don on ageyn his otvyn clothis ; and leyn the croase in 
hese necke to berynt, atid drawyn hym forth with ropys ; 
and than xal come to women wepyng, and with here 
kandes wryngyn, seyng thus, 

Primnit muHer. Alias ! Jhesus, allae I Jhesue, wo is me ! 

That thou art thus dyspoylyd, alias 1 
And 3et nevyr defawth was fownd in the. 

But evyr thou hast be fole of grace. 
Secundua mulier. A I here ia a rewful syth of Jhesu bo 
good, 

Tliat he xal thus dye ajens the ryth ; 
A I wykkyd men, je be more than wood. 

To do tliat good Lord so gret dyspyte ! 



THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 817 

Here Jhesus tumyth a^en to the women with his 
crosse, thus seyng^ 

Dowterys of Hierusalem, for me wepyth nowth. 
But for 30ur8elf wepyth and for 30ur chyldyr also ; 

For the days xal come that thei han aftyr sowth. 

Here synne and here blyndnesse xal tume hym to wo ! 

Than xal be sayd ** blyssyd be the wombys that bareyn be, 

And wo to the tetys tho days that do 3evyn sokyng!" 

And to here faderes, thei xul seyn, " Wo to the tyme that 

thou begat me T' 

And to her moderes, ** Alias 1 wher xal be oure 

d welly ng?" 

Than to the hyllys and mownteynes they xal crye and 
calle, 
Oppyn and hyde us from the face of hym syttyng in 
trone ! 
Or ellys ovyrthrowyth and on us now come falle, 
That we may be hyd from oure sorweful mone. 

Here Jhesus tumyth fro the women and goth forth^ 
and ther thei metyn with Symonem in the place, the 
Jewys seyng to hym^ 

Primus JudiBus, Sere, to the a word of good ; 

A man is here thou mayst se, 
Beryth hevy of a rode, 

Where an he xal hangyd be. 

Therfore we pray alle the. 

Thou take the crosse of the man ; 
Bere it with us to Kalvarye, 

And ryth gret thank thou xalt han. 

Symon, Seres, I may not in no degr^,— 
I have gret errandys for to do ; 



S18 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Therfore I pray 30W excuse me, 
And on my herand lete me go. 

Secundus JueUeiis. What ? harlot, hast thou skome 

To here the tre ? whan we the praye I 
Thou xalt berynt, haddyst thou sworn. 

And y t were ten tyme the weye ! 

Syman. Serys, I pray 30W dysplese 30U nowth, 

I wole help to here the tre ; 
Into the place it xal be browth, 

Where 3e wole commawnde me. 

Here Symon takyth the cros of Jhesus, and beryth 
it forth. 

Veronica. A ! 3e synful pepyl, why fare thus ? 

ffor swet and blod he may not se ! 
Alias ! holy prophete, Cryst Jhesus ! 

Careful is myn hert for the ! 

And iche whypyth his face with her kerchy. 

Jheius. VeronjCA, thi whipyng doth me ese i 

My faoe is ciene that was blak to se : 
I xal them kepe from alle mysese, 

That lokyn on thi kerchy and remembyr me ! 

Than xul thei pulle Jhesu out of his clothis, and 
leyn them togedyr; and ther thei xtd pullyn hym down 
and leyn along on the cros, and after that naylyn hym 
thereon. 

Primus Judcms. Come on now here, we xal asay 

Yf the cros for the be mete ; 
Cast hym down here in the devyl way, 

How long xal he standyn on Ids fete ? 



THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 819 

Secundus Judceus. Pul hym down, evyl mote he the 1 

And gyf me his arm in hast ; 
And anon we xal se 

Hese good days thei xul be past 1 

Tertius Judeeus. Gef hese other arm to me, — 

Another take hed to hese feet ; 
And anon we xal se 

Yf the borys be for hym meet. 

Quartus Judceus. This is mete, take good hede ; 

PuUe out that arm to the sore. 
Primus Jud^eus. This is short, the devyl hym sped, 

Be a large fote and more. 

Secundus Judcnu. ffest on a rop and puUe hym long. 

And I xal drawe the ageyn ; 
Spare we not these ropys strong, 

Thow we brest both flesch and veyn 1 

Tertius Judaeus. Dryye in the nayle anon, lete se. 
And loke and the flesch and sennes welle last. 

Quartus Judasus. That I graunt, so mote I the ; 
Lo ! this nayl is dreve ryth wel and fast. 

Primus Judoeus, ffest a rope than to his feet. 

And drawe hym down long anew. 
Secundus Judcsus. Here is a nayl for both good and greet, 

I xal dry ve it thorwe, I make a vow 1 

Here mUe thei leve of and davmcyn abawte the eras 
Portly. 

Tertius Judijeus. Lo ! fela, here a lythe takkyd on a tre ! 
Quartus Judasus. ja ! and I trowe thou art a worthy 
kyngl 



820 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Primtu JudcBus. A ! good sere, telle me now what 

helpyth thi prophecy the ? 
Secundus Judceus. 3a ! or any of thi ffals prechyng ! 

Tertitis Judceus. Seres, set up the cros on the honde, 

That we may loke hym in the face. 
Quartus Judceus. 3a 1 and we xal knelyn onto oure kyng 
so kend, 

And preyn hym of his gret grace ! 

Here qwhan thei han set hym up, thei xuln gon before 
hym, seyng eche qffier other thus^ 

Primus Judceus. Heyl ! kyng of Jewys, yf thou be. 
Secundus Judceus. 3a ! 3a ! sere, as thou hangyst there 

flesche and bonys. 
Tertius Judceus. Com now down of that tre ! 
Quartus Judceus. And we wole worchepe the alle at 

onys. 

Here xulpoer comonys stand and loke upon the Jewys 
aij. or v.i and the Jewys xul come to them, and do them 
hange the thevys. 

Primus Judcetis. Come on, 3e knavys, and set up these 
ij. crosses ryth, 
And hange up these to thevys anon 1 
Secundus Judceus. 3a ! and in the worchep of this worthy 
knyth, 
On eche syde of hym xal hangyn on ! 

Here the sympyl men xul settyn up these ij. crossys, and 
hangyn up the thevys be the armys and therwhylys xal the 
Jewys cast dycefor his clothis, andfytyn andstryvyn; 
and in the mene tyme xal oure Lady come with iij. Maryes 
with here and Sen John with hem, settyng hem down 



THE CBUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 8Sl 

asyde afore the cros; oure Lady nowmyng and vwmyng 
and ley sere seyng^ 

Maria. A ! my good Lord, my sone so swete ! 

Wliy hast thou don ? why hangyst now thus here ? 
Is ther non other deth to the now mete. 

But the most shamful deth among these thevys fere? 

A ! out on my hert 1 whi brest thou nowth ? 

And thou art maydyn and modyr, and seyst thus thi 
childe spylle ! 
How mayst thou abyde this sorwe and this woful thowth ? 

Ah ! deth I deth ! deth ! Why wilt thou not me kylle ? 

Here oure Lady xal naonge ajen, and ore Lord aal 
eeyn thus, 

Jhesus. O iFadyr almythy ! makere of man I 

fforgyff these Jewys that don me wo ! 
fforgeve hem, fadyr ! forgeve hem than I 

ffor thei wete nowth what thei do. 

Primus Judasus. 3a [ vatli ! vath ! now here is he 
That bad us dystroye oure tempyl on a day. 

And withinne days thre 

He xuld reysynt a3en in good aray, 

Secundus Judasus. Now and thou kan do sweche a deda. 

Help now thiself, yf that thou kan ; 
And we xal belevyn on the withoutyn drede. 

And seyn thou art a mythty man ! 

Tertius Judceus. 3a ! yf thu be Goddys sone, as thou 
dedyst teche, 
ffrom the cros come now downe ! 

Y 



Sii COVBNTBT MYSTERIES. 

Than of mercy we xal the beseche. 

And seyn thou art a Lord of gret renown ! 

Jesies. Yf thou be Goddys sone^ as thou dedyst seye, 
Helpe here now both the and us ! 

But I fynde it not al in my feye, 

That thou xuldyst be Cryst^ Goddys sone Jhesus. 

Dysmas. Go wey, fool ! why seyst thou so ? 

He is the sone of God, I beleve it wel ! 
And fiynne dede he nevyr, lo ! 

That he xuld be put this deth tyl. 
Be we ful meche wrong ban wrowth, — 
' He dede neVyr thing amys ! 
'Now mercy, £90<1 Loi'd ! mercy ! and forgete me nowth 

Whan thou comyst to thi kyngham and to thi blysse ! 

Jhetui. Amen ! amen ! thou art ful wyse ! 

That thou hast askyd I grawnt the I 
This same day in paradyse 

With me thi God" thou xalt ther be ! 

Maria, O my sone ! my sone ! my derlyng dere ! 

What have I defendyd the ? 
Thou hast spoke to alle tho that ben here, 

And not o word thou spekyst to me ! 

To tho Jewyd thou art ful kende, 

Thou hast forgeve al here mysdede ; 
And the thef thou hast in mende, 

For onys haskyng mercy hefne is his mede. 

A ! my sovereyn Lord, why whylt thou not speke 
To me that am thi modyr in peyn for thi wrong ? 

A ! hert I hert ! why whylt thou not breke ? 
That I were out of this sorwe so stronge ! 



THB CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 828 

Jhnu9. A I woman^ woman, behold ther ibi tone ! 

And thou Jon take her for thi modyr ! 
I charge the to kepe her as besyly as thou kone. 

Thou a clene mayde xal kepe another I 

And, woman, thou knowyst that my fiulyr of be&e me sent 
To take this manhod of the, Adamys rawnsom to pay ; 

ffor this is the wyl and to my ffaderys intent. 

That I xal thus deye to delyvere man fro the develys 
pray! 

Now syn it is the wyl of my fadyr it xuld thus be, 
Why xuld it dysplese the, modyr, now my deth so sore? 

And for to suffre al this for man I was bom of the^ 
To the blys that man had lost man a}en to restore. 

Here oure Z^dy xal ryse and renne and kalse the 
crosse. 

Maria Magdalen. A ! good lady. Why do je thus? 

30ur dolful cher now chevit us sore. 
And for the peyne of my swete Lord Jhesus, 

That he seyth in 30U, it peyneth hym more. 

Maria virgo. I pray 30W alle lete me ben here. 

And hang me up here on this tre, 
Be my frend and sone that me is so dere ; 

ffor ther he is, ther wold I be. 

Johannes. Jentyl lady, now leve jour momyng, 

And go with us, now we 30U pray I 
And comfort oure Lord at hese departyng, 

ffor he is almost redy to go his way. 

Here thei xal take oure lady from the crosse^ and here 
xal Pylai come down from his shaffald with Cayphas and 

y2 



sal COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Annas, and alie here meni ; and xul come and lokyn on 
Cryst, and Annas and Cayphas xul skorr^fuUy seyn, 
Cayphas. Lo ! seres, lo ! beholdyth and se, 

Here hangyth he that halpe many a man ; 
And now yf he Goddys sone be, 

Helpe now hymself yf that he kan. 

Annas. 3a ! and yf thou kyng of Israel be^ 

Come down of the cros among us alle ! 
And lete thi God now delyvere the, 

And than oure kyng we wole the calle I 

Here xal Pylat askynpenne and inke and a tabyl, xal 
betake hym wretyn afore ^ " Hie est JJiesus Nazarenus 
rex Judasorum,** And he xal make hym to wryfe, and 
than gon upon a leddere^ and settyn the tabyl abovyn 
Crystes hed; and tlien Cayphas xal makyn hym to redyn, 
and seyng, 

Cayphas. Sere Pylat, we merveylyth of this, 
That je wryte hym to be kyng of Jewys. 
Therfore we wolde that 30 xuld wryte thus, 
That he namyd hymself Kyng of Jewus. 
Pylat, That I have wretyn, wretyn it is, 
And so it xal be for me i-wys. 

And so forth alle thei xal gon a^en to theskaffald, and 
Jhesus xal cryen 

Heloy ! Heloy ! Lama zabathany ! 
My fadyr in hevyn on hy. 

Why dost thou me forsake P 
The freltd of my mankende. 
With stronge peyn yt gynnyth to peynde, 
Ha, dere fadyr, have me in mende, 

And lete deth my sorwe slake ! 



THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 325 

Secundus Judctus. Methynky th be this doth calle Hely ; 
Lete us go nere and aspy, 
And loke yf he come prevely. 

From cros hym down to reve. 
JAesus. So grett a thrust dede nevyr man take 
As I have, man, now for thi sake ; 
For thrust asundyr my lyppys gyn crake,— 

For drynes thei do cleve. 

Tertius Judceiu. 30ur thrust, sere hoberd, for to slake^ 

Ey3il and galle here I the take, 

What 1 me thynkyth a mowe 3e make : — 

Is not this good drynk ? 
To crye for drynke 30 had gret hast. 
And now it semyth it is but wast, — 
Is not this drynk of good tast ? 

Now telle me how 3e thynk I 

Quartus Judcms. On lofte, sere hoberd, now 3e be sett. 
We wyl no lenger with 30U lett ! 
We grete 30U wel on the newe gett> 

And make on 30U a mowe. 
Primus Judceus. We grete 30U wel with a scorn. 
And pray 30U, bothe evyn and mom. 
Take good eyd to oure com. 

And chare awey the crowe. 

Jhesus. In manus tuas, Domine ! 

Holy fadyr in hefly se, 

I comende my spyryte to the. 

For here now hendyth my fest ! 
I xal go sle the fende, that freke, 
ffor now myn herte begynnyth to breke, 
Wurdys mo xal I non speke ! 

Nunc consummatum est ! 



836 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Maria, Alas ! das 1 I leve to longe, 

To 66 my swete sone with peynes stionge, 

As a their on cros doth honge, 

And nevyr ^et dede he synne ! 
Alas ! my dere chyld to deth is dressyd t 
Now is my care wel more incressyd ! 
A ! myn herte with peyn is pressyd ! 

ffor sorwe myn hert doth twynne. 

JohanneM. A ! blyssyd mayde, chaunge ywr thought ; 
ffor thow 30ur sone with sorwe be sought, 
3itt by his owyn wyl this werk is wrought, 

And wylfuUy his deth to take ! 
30W to kepe he chargyd me here ; 
I am 30ur servaunt, my lady dere, 
Wherfore I pray 30W, be of good chere, 

And merthis that 30 make ! 

Maria. Thow he had nevyr of me be born, 
And I sey his flesche thus al to-torn, 
On bak behyndyn^ on brest befom. 

Rent with woundys wyde ! 
Nedys I must wonyn in woo. 
To se my ffrende with many a fo 
AUe to-rent from top to too. 

His flesche withowtyn hyde 1 

Johannes. A ! blyssyd lady, as I 30W telle. 
Had he not deyd, we xuld to helle, 
Amonges ffendys ther evyr to dwelle. 

In peynes that ben smert 1 
He sufferyth deth for oure trespace. 
And thorwe his deth we xal have grace. 
To dwelle with hym in hevyn place ; 

Therforo both mery in hert ! 



THE CRUCIFIXION OF CHRIST. 8S7 

Maria. A ! dere ffrende, weel woot I ibis. 
That he doth bye us to his blys ; 
But jitt of myrth evyr more I mys, 

Whan I se this syght 1 
Johannes. Now, dere lady, therfore I 50W pray, 
ffro this ddful dolour wende we cure way, 
ffor whan this syght 50 se nought may, 

5oure care may waxe more lyght. 

Maria. Now sythe I must parte hym fro, 
3it lete me kysse or that I go 
His blyssyd ffeyt that sufferyn wo, 

Naylid on this tre. 
So cruelly with grett dyspyte. 
Thus shamfully was nevyr man dyghte, 
Therfore in peyn myn hert is pyghte, 

Al joye departyth fro me ! 

Hie quasi semimartua cadat prona in ierram, et (Ucii. 

Johannes. Now, blyssyd mayd, com forthe with me 1 
No lengere this syght that je se, 
I xal 30W gyde in this countr^. 

Where that it plesyth 30W best. 
Maria. Now, jentyl John, my sonys derlyng ! 
To Goddys temple thou me brynge, 
That I may prey God with sore wepynge. 

And mornyngo that is prest ! 

Johannes. AUe 30ur desyre xal be wrought, 
With lierty wylle I werke 30ur thought ; 
Now, blyssyd mayde, taryeth nowth, 

In the temple that 39 ware ! 
flfor holy prayere may chaunge 30ur mood, 
And cawse 30ur chere to be more good ; 



9S8 COVENTRY MT8TERIES. 

Whan 56 se not} ^our childys blood. 

The lasse may be 30ur care ! 

Time transiet Maria ad templum cum Johanne, etc, 

Maria. Here in this temple my lyff I lede^ 
And serve my lord God with hertyly drede,— - 
Now xal wepynge me fode and fede. 

Some comforte tylle God sende. 
A ! my lord God, I the pray. 
Whan my childe lyseth the iij.*** day, 
Comforte thanne thyn hand-may, 

My care for to amende ! 



XXXIII. THE DESCENT INTO HELL. 



Anima ChristL Now alle mankende, in herte be glad. 
Withe alle merthis that may be had, 
ffor mannys sowle that was be-stad 

In the logge of helle. 
Now xal I ryse to lyve agayn, 
From peyn to pleys of paradyse pleyn ; 
Therfore, man, in hert be fayn. 

In merthe now xalt thou dwelle 1 

I am the sowle of Cryst Jhesu, 
The whiche is kynge of alle vertu ; 
My body is ded, the Jewys it slew. 

That hangyth 3itt on the rode ! 
Rent and torn, al blody red, 
ffor mannys sake my body is deed, 
ffor mannys helpe my body is bred, 

And sowle drynke my bodyes blode. 

Thow my body be now sclayn. 
The thrydde day, this is certayn, 
I xal reyse my body agayn. 

To lyve as I 30W say ! 
Now wole I go streyth to helle. 
And feche ffrom the fendys felle, 
Alle my frendys that therin dwelle. 

To blysse that lestyth ay. 



SSO COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

The sawle goth to helle gatys and seyth, ^* Atiollite 
portaSj principes, vestras^ et elevamini^portdB etemaleSy et 
introibU Rex Glorue." 

Ondotbe joure }aty8 of sorwatorie ! 
On mannys sowle I have memorie. 
Here corny th now the kynge of glorye. 

These gates for to breke ! 
30 develys that am here withinne, 
Helle gatys }e xal unpynne, 
I xal delyvere mannys kynne, — 

ffrom wo I wole hem wreke ! 

Belyalle. Alas I alas ! out and harrow ! 
Onto thi byddynge must we bow, 
That thou art God now do we know, 

Of the had we grett dowte. 
A3ens the may no thynge stonde, 
AUe thynge obeyth to thyn honde, 
Bothe hevyn and helle, watyr and londe, — 

Alle thynge must to the lowte. 

Jnima Crisii. Ajens me it were but wast 
To holdyn or to stondyn fast; 
Helle logge may not last 

A3ens the kynge of glorye. 
Thi derke dore down I throwe, 
My fayr iFrendys now wele I knowe, 
I xal hem brynge reknyd be rowe 

Out of here purcatorye ! 



XXXIV. THE BURIAL OF CHRIST. 



Centurio. In trewthe now I knowe wiUi ful opyn ayght. 
That Goddys dere sone is nay lid on tre I 

These wundyrful tokenys apreyyn fid ryght 
Quod vere filius Dei erat iste !. 

Alius miles (2). The very child of God I suppose that he be, 
And so it semyth wele be his wundyrful werk ! 

The erthe sore qwakyth, and that agresyth me. 
With myst and grett wedyr it is wouudyr dyrk 1 



(3). Soche merveylis shewe may non erthely 
man, 
The eyr is rjrght derke, that fyrst was ryght clere ; 
The erthe-qwave is grett, the clowdys waxe whan, 
These tokenys preve hym a lord without any pere ! 

Centurio, His fadyr is pereles kyng of most empere, 
Bothe lorde of this world and kynge of hevyn hy3e ; 

3itt out of alle synne to brynge us owt of daungere. 
He soferyth his dere sone for us alle to dye. 

Nichodemtis. Alas ! alas ! what syght is this ? 
To se the lorde and kynge of blys, 
That nevyr synnyd ne dede amys, 

Thus naylid upon a rode ! 
Alas ! 3ewys, what have }e wrought? 
A ! 3e wyckyd wytys, what was 30ur thought? 



832 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Why have 30 bobbyd and thus betyn owth 
Alle his blyssyd blood ? 

Senturyo. A I now trqwly telle weyl I kan. 

That this was Goddys owyn sone ! 
I knowe he is both Gt)d and man. 

Be this wark that here is done 1 

Ther was nevyr man but God that cowde make this werk. 

That evyr was of woman born ! 
Were he nevyr so gret a clerk, 

It passeth hem alle, thow thei had sworn i 

Hese lawe was trewe, I dare wel saye, 

That he tawth us here amonge ! 
Therfore I rede 3e tume 30ur faye. 

And amende that 3e han do wronge 1 

Joseph of Aram. O ! good Lord Jhesu, that deyst now 
here on rode, 

Have mercy on me and forgyf me mys ! 
I wold the worchep here with my good. 

That I may come to thi blysse 1 

To Pylat now wool I goon. 

And askd the body of my Lord Jhesu ; 
To bery that now wold I soon. 

In my grave that is so new. 

Heyl I sere Pylat, that syttyth in sete I 
Heyl ! justyce of Jewys men do the calle 1 

Heyl ! with helthe I do the grete, 
I pray the of a bone what so befalle. 

To bery Jhesuis body I wole the pray, 
That he were out of mennys syth ; 



THE BURIAL OF CHRIST. 8S8 

ffor to morwyn xal be oure holyday, 

Than wole no man hym bery, I the plyth. 

And yf we lete hym hange ther sty He, 

Some wolde seyn therof anow ; 
The pepyl therof wold seyn ful ylle. 

That nother xuld be jour worchep nor prow. 

Pylai. Sere Joseph of Bararaathie, I graunt the 

With Jhesuis body do thin intent ; 
But fyrst I wole wete that he ded be, 

As it was his jugement 1 

Sere knytys, I comawnd 30W that je go 
In hast with Josepht of Baramathie ; 

And loke je take good hede therto. 
That Jhesu suerly ded be. 

Se that this comawndement }e fulfylle. 

Without wordys ony mo ; 
And than lete Joseph do his wylle, 

What that he wyl with Jhesu do. 

Here come to knytes befom Pylat at onys, thus seyng^ 

Primus Miles. Sere, we xal do oure dylygens. 

With Joseph goyng to Calvarye ; 
Be we out of thi presens, 

Sone the trewthe we xal aspye. 

Joseph. Gramercy, Pylat, of jour jentylnesse. 
That 36 han grawntyd me my lyst ; 

Any thyng in my province 
36 xal have at 30ur resquest. 

Pylat, Sere, alle 30ur lest 36 xal have, 
With Jhesuis body do 30ur intent ; 



884 COVBlfTRT MT8TBRIE&U 

Whethyr 30 bery hym in pyt or graven 
The powere I grawnt >ow hero present. 

The if. knygtes go with Joseph to Jhesus^ and siande 
and heUyn hym in the /ace, 

Secundus miles. Me tbynkyth Jheeu is «ewre anow,— 

It is no ned hit bonys to brake : 
He is ded, how thinkyth 30W ? 

He xal nevyr go nor speke. 

Primus miles. We wyl be sure or than we go, 

Of a thyng I am bethowtb ^ 
3ondyr is a blynd knyth I xal go to. 

And sone awhyle here xal be wrowth. 

Here the knyth goth to blynde Longeys^ and seyth, 

Heyl, sere Longeys, thou gentyl knyth i 

The I prey now ry th hertyly { 
That thou wylt wend with me ful wyth. 

It xal be for thi prow veryly. 
Longeus. Sere, at 30ur comawndement with 30W wyl I 
wende. 

In what place 30 wyl me have ; 
For I trost 3e be my frend ; 

Liede me forth, sere, oure sabath 30U save 1 

Pfimus miles. Lo ! sere Longeys, here is a spere I 
Bothe long, and brood, and sharp anow ; 

Heve it up fast that it wore there, 
iFor here is game :— show, man, show. 



Here Longeys shoioyth the spere warfy, and the blood 
comyth rennyng to his hand, and he avantoresly »al wype 
his eyn. 

Longeus. O good Lord ! how may this be. 
That I may se so bryth now ? 



THE BUMAL OF CHRIST. SS5 

This tbretty wyntyr I myth not se. 

And now I may se I wote nevyr how ! 
But ho is this that hangy th here now ? 

I trowe it be the mayndonys sone ; 
And that he is now I knowe wel how. 

The Jewys to hym this velany han don ! 

Here heffallyth doume on his knes. 

Now, good Lord, fforgyf me that. 

That I to the now don have ; 
For I dede I wyst not what,— 

The Jewys of myn ignorans dede me rave. 
Mercy ! Mercy ! Mercy j I crye. 

Than Joseph doth set up the lederes and Nychodemus 
corny th to help hym. 

Nicodemus. Joseph ab Aramathy, blyssyd thou be 1 

ffbr thou dost a fol good dede ; 
I prey the lete me help the» 

That I may be partenere of thi mede. 

Joseph. Nychodemus, welcome indede ! 

I pray 30W 30 wole help therto ; 
He wole aqwyte us ryth wele oure mede. 

And I have lysens for to do. 

Here Joseph and Nychodemus takyn Cryst of the 
cros, on on o ledyr and the tot her on another leddyr ; 
and qwhan is had down, Joseph leyth hym in our Ladys 
lappCj seyng the knytes tumyng hem, and Joseph seyth, 

Joseph. Lo ! Mary modyr, good and trewe^ 

Here is thi son, blody and bloo ! 
fifor hym myn hert ful sore doth rewe, 

Kysse hym now onys eer he go ! 



886 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Maria Virgo. Ay mercy ! mercy ! myn owyn sone so 
dere^ 

Thi blody face now I must kysse ! 
Thi face is pale, withowtyn chere ! 

Of meche joy now xal I mysse ! 
ITier was nevyr raodyr that sey this. 

So her sone dyspoyled with so gret wo ; 
And my dere chylde nevyr dede amys,— 

•A, mercy ! fadyr of hefne, it xulde be so ! 

Joseph. Mary, 30ur sone 3e take to me ; 

Into his grave it xal be browth. 
If aria, Joseph, biyssyd ever mot thou be. 

For the good ded that ^e han wrowth ! 

Here thei xal leyn Cryst in his grave. 

Joseph. I gyf the this syndony that I have bowth. 

To wynde the in whyl it is new. 
Nichodemus. Here is an onvment that I have browth. 

To anoynt withalle myn lord Jhesu. 

Joseph. Now Jhesu is withinne his grave, 

Wheche I ordejni somtyme for me ; 
On the, LfOrd, I vowche it save, 

I knowe my mede ful gret xal be. 

Nichodemus. Now lete us leyn on this ston ageyn. 

And Jhesu in this tombe stylle xal be ; 
And we wyl waike hom ful pleyn, — 

The day passyth fast I se. 
Farewel, Joseph, and wel 3e be ; 

No lengere teryeng here we make. 

Joseph. Sere, almythy God be with the. 
Into his blysse he mote 30U take ! 



THE BURIAL OF CHRIST. SS7 

fiarewel, 36 jentyl princes kende. 
In joye evyr mote 36 be 1 
The blitsse of hefne withowtyn ende 
I knowe veryly that 36 xal se. 

Here the princes xal do reverens to owe Ludy^ and 
gen here way^ and leve the Maryes at the sepulchre. 



XXXV. THE RESURRECTION. 



Cayphas goth to Pylat^ seyng thus, 

Cayphaa. Herk^ sere Pylat, lyst to me ! 

I xal the telle tydynges new ; 
Of o thyog we must ware be. 

Or ellys hereafter we myth it rewe. 

Thou wotyst weyl that Jhesu, 

He seyd to us with wordys pleyn, 
He seyd we xuld fynd it trew, — 

The thryd day he wold ryse ageyn. 
Yf that hese dyscyplys come serteyn, 

And out of his grave stele hym away, 
Thei wyl go preche and pleyn seyn 

That he is reson the thryd day. 

This is the cowncel that I gyf here, 
Take men and gyf hem charge therto 

To weche the grave with gret power, 
Tyl the thryd day be go. 

Pylat. Sere Cayphas, it xal be do. 
For, as 30 say, ther is peryl in ; 

And it happend that it were so. 
It myth make our lawys for to blyn. 

5e xal se, ser^ er that 3e go. 
How I xal this mater save. 



THB RE8URRBCTI0N. 889 

And what I xal sey therto^ 
And what charge thei xal have. 

Come forth, 30 ser Amorawnt, 

And ser Arphaxat ; com ner also 
Ser Ciosdram, and ser AfiVaunt, 

And here the charge that 3e must do. 
Seres, to Jhesuis grave 3e xal go, 

Tyl that the thryd day be gon ; 
And lete nother frend nor fo. 

In no wey to towche the ston. 

Yf ony of hese dyscipelys come ther 

To feche the body fro 30U away. 
Bete hym down, have 3e no fere. 

With shamful deth do hym day. 
In payn of 30ur godys and 30ur ly vys. 

That 36 lete hem nowth shape 30u fro. 
And of 30ur chyldere and 30ur wyfys. 

For al 36 lese, and 36 do so. 

Primus miles. Sere Pylat, we xal not ses 

We xal kepe it strong anow. 
Secundus miles. 3 a, and an hunderyd put hem in pres, 

Thei xal dey, I make a vow. 
Teriius miles. And han hunderyd ! fy on an c. and an c. therto ! 

Ther is non of hem xal us withstonde. 
Quartus miles. 3a, and ther com an hunderyd thowsand 
and mo, 

I xal hem kylle with myn honde. 

Pylat. We\, seres, than 30ur part 36 do. 

And to 3 our charge loke 36 take hede, 
Withowtyn wordys ony mo, 

Wysly now that 36 procede. 

z2 



340 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Here the knytes gon out of the place, 
Lo ! Ser Cayphas, how thynkyth 30W ? 

Is not this wel browth abowth ? 
CaypJias. In feyth, ser, it is sure anow, 

Hardely have 30 no dowth. 

Atfaxai. Let se, ser Amaraunt, where wele 30 be ? 

Wole 3e kepe the feet or the hed? 
Ameraunt. At the hed, so mote I the, 

And ho so come here he is but dead. 
Arfaxat. And I wole kepe the feet this tyde, 

Thow ther come both Jakke and Gylle. 
Cosdram. And I xal kepe the ryth syde, 

And ho so come I xal hym kylle. 

Ajffraunt. And I wole on the lefte hand ben, 
And ho so come here, he xal nevyr then ; 
fful sekyrly his bane xal I ben. 

With dyntys of dowte. 
Syr Pylat, have good day ! 
We xul kepyn the body in clay. 
And we xul wakyn wele the way, 

And wayten alle abowte. 

Pylatus. Now, jentyl seres, wole 3e vowchesaffe 
To go with me and sele the grafie, 
That he ne ryse out of the grave. 

That is now ded ? 
Cayphas, We graunte, wel lete us now go : 
Whan it is selyd and kepte also. 
Than be we sekyr withowtyn wo. 

And have of hym no dred. 

Tunc ibunt ad sepidcrum Pilatus^ CayphaSy Annas, 
et omnes milites, et dicimt. 



THE RESURRECTION. S41 

jdnnas. Loo ! here is wax fiiil redy dyght^ 
Sett on 30ur sele anon ful ryght. 
Than be 36 sekyr, I 30W plygbt — 

He xal not rysyn ageyn. 
Pilatus, On this corner my seal xal sytt. 
And with this wax I sele this pytt ; 
Now dare I ley he xal nevyr flytt 

Out of this grave serteayn. 

Annas, Here is more wax fFul redy, loo ! 
Alle the corneres 3e sele also, 
And with a lokke loke it too, — 

Than lete us gon oure way. 
And lete these knytes abydyn therby, 
And yf hese dysciplys com prevyly 
To stele awey this ded body, 

To us they hem brynge without delay. 

Pilatus. On every corner now is sett my seale. 
Now is myn herte in welthe and wele. 
This may no brybour awey now stele 

This body from undyr ston. 
Now, syr buschopp, I pray to the. 
And Annas also, com on with me, 
Evyn togedyr alle we thre 

Homward the wey we gon. 

As wynde wrothe, 
Knyghtes, now goht, 
Clappyd in clothe, 

And kepyth hym welle. 
Loke 36 be bolde 
With me for to holde, 
36 xul have gold. 

And helme of stele. 



842 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Pi/lat, AnnaSf and Cayphas go to iher skaffaldys, 
and the knyghtes teyn, 

AffraxaU. Now in this grownde 
He lyth bounde. 
That tholyd wounde, 

ffor he was ffals. 
This lefft comere 
I wyl kepe here, 
Armyd clere, 

Bothe hed and hals. 

Co9dran* I wyl have this syde, 
What so betyde ; 
If any man ryde 

To stele the cors, 
I xal hym chyde 
With woundys wyde, 
Amonge hem glyde 

With fyne fors. 

Ameraunt. The hed I take, 
Hereby to wake ; 
A stele stake 

I holde in honde, 
Maystryes to make, 
Crownys i-crake, 
SchafPfcys to shake, 

And schapyn schonde. 

Atfaosat. I xal not lete 
To kepe the fete. 
They ar ful wete, 

Walterid in blood. 
He that wylle stalke, 



THB RBSURRECTIOX. 84t 

Be brook or balke, 
Hedyr to walke, 

Tho wrecchis be wood. 

Primus miles. Myn heed duUytb^ 
Myn herte ffullyth 

Of sfilepp. 
Seynt Mahownd, 
This beryenge grownd 

Thou kepp ! 

Secundus miles. I sey the same, 
ffbr any blame 

IfaUe. 
Mahownd whelpe, 
Aflyr thin helpe 

I calle ! 

Teriius miles. I am bevy as leed, 
ffor any dred 

I slepe, 
Mahownd of myght. 
This ston to nyght 

Thou kepe ! 

QuarttiS miles. I have no foot 
To stonde on root 

By brynke. 
Here I aske 
To go to taske 

A wynke. 

Tunc dormyerU milites ; et veniet Anima Christi de tfi- 
/emoy cum Adam et Eva, Abraham, John Baptist, et 
aliis. 



844 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Jnima Chriati. Come forthe^ Adam^ and Eve with the. 
And alle my frendys that here in be ; 
To Paradys come forthe with me. 

In blysse for to dwelle ! 
The fende of helle, that is 30ur ffbo, 
He xal be wrappyd and woundyn in woo ; 
ffro wo to welthe now xul 3e go. 

With myrthe evyrmore to melle. 

Adam. I thanke the, Lord, of thi grett grace, 
That now is for30vyn my grett trespace ; 
Now xal we dwellyn in blysful place, 

In joye and endeles myrthe. 
Thorwe my synne man was fibrlorn. 
And man to save thou wore alle torn. 
And of a mayd in Bedlem born, 

That evyr blyssyd be thi byrthe ! 

Eva. Blyssyd be thou, Lord of lyff ! 

I am Eve, Adamis wyiF ; 

Thou hast soferyd strok and stryff, 

flfor werkys that we wrought. 
Thi mylde mercy haht alle for3evyn, 
Dethis dentys on the were drevyn. 
Now with the. Lord, we xul levyn, — 

Thi bryght blood hath us bowthe. 

Johannes Baptista. I am thi cosyn, my name is John ; 
Thi woundys hath betyn the to the bon ; 
I babtyjid the in flom Jordon, 

And 3aff thi body bapty3e. 
With thi grace now xul we gon 
ffrom oure enmyes everychon. 
And fyndyn myrthis many on. 

In pley of paradyse. 



THE RESURRECTION. 846 

Abraham. I am Abraham^ fadyr trowe. 
That reyned after Noes flowe ; 
A sory synne Adam gan sowe, 

That clad us alle in care. 
A sone that maydenys mylk hath sokyn. 
And with his blood oure bonde hath brokyn, 
Helle logge lyth unlokyn, 

fFro fylthe with frende we fare. 

Amma Chrisiu (Tayre firendys, now be 3e wunne, 
On 30W shyneth the sothfast sunne ; 
The gost that alle grevaunce hath gunne, 

flPul harde I xal hym bynde. 
As wyckyd werme thou gunne apere. 
To tray my chylderyn that were so dere, 
Therfore, traytour, hevermore here 

Newe peynes thou xalt evyr ffynde. 

Thorwe blood I took of raannys kynde, 
ffals devyl, I here the bynde, 
In endles sorwe I the wynde, 

Therin evyrmore to dwelle. 
Now thou art bownde, thou mayst not fle, 
flFor thin envyous cruelty 
In endeles dampnacian xalt thou be, 

And nevyr comyn out of helle. 

Belialle. Alas ! herrow ! now am I bownde. 
In helle gonge to ly on grounde, 
In hendles sorwe now am I wounde, 

In care evyr more to dwelle. 
In helle logge I ly} alone, 
Now is my joye awey al gone, 
fFor alle fendys xul be my fone, 

I xal nevyr com from helle. 



346 COVBNTRT MYSTERIES. 

Jtdma Christu Now is 30ur ffoo boundyn in belle. 
That evyr was besy 30W for to qwelle ; 
Now wele I rysyn f&esche and ffelle, 

that rent was for 30ur sake. 
Myn owyn body that hynge on rode. 
And be the Jewys nevyr so wode, 
It xal aryse bothe flesche and blode ; 

My body now wyl I take. 

7\mc transiet atdma Christi ad renucUandum corpus, 
q%iO resuscUato, dicat Jhesus, 

Jhena. Harde gatys have I gon, 
And peynes sofryd many on, 
Stomblyd at stake and at ston, 

Ny3 thre and thretty 3ere. 
I lyght out of my faderes trone, 
iFor to amende mannys mone; 
My flesche was betyn to the bon, 

My blood i-bledde clere. 

ffbr mannys love I tholyd dede. 

And for mannys love I am rysyn up rede, 

ffor man I have mad my body in brede. 

His sowle for to fede. 
Man, and thou lete meyns gone, 
And wylt not folwyn me anone, 
Suche a frende fyndyst thou nevyr none. 

To help the at thi nede. 

Salve, sancta parens ! my modyr dere ! 
AUe heyl, modyr, with glad chere ! 
ffor now is aresyn, with body clere, 

Thi sone that was delve depe. 
This is the thrydde day that I 30W tolde, 
I xuld lirysyfr out of the cley so colde,— 



TUB RESURRECTION. S47 

Now am I here with brest ful bolde, 

Therfore no more 30 wepe. 

Maria. Welcom, my Lord ! welcom^ my grace ! 
Welcome, my sone, and my solace ! 
I xal the wurchep in every place, — 

Welcom, Lord God of myght ! 
Mekel sorwe in hert I leed, 
Whan thou were leyd in dethis beed, 
But now my blysse is newly breed,— 

AUe men may joye this syght. 

Jhestis. AUe tliis werlde that was forlorn, 
Shal wurchepe 30U bothe cvyn and morn, 
ffor had I not of 30W be bom, 

Man had be lost in helle. 
I was deed, and lyff I have, 
And thorwe my dethe man do I save, 
ffor now I am resyn out of my grave. 

In hevyn man xal now dwelle. 

Maria. A, dere sone ! these wurdys ben goode. 
Thou hast wel comfortyd my momyng moode 
Blyssyd be thi precyous bloode. 

That mankende thus doth save ! 
Jhesus. Now, dere modyr, my leve I take j 
Joye in hert and myrthe 36 make, 
ffor dethe is deed and lyff dothe wake. 

Now I am resyn fro my grave ! 

Maria, ffarewel, my sone ! farewel, my childe ! 
ffarewel, my Lorde ! my God so mylde ! 
Myn hert is wele that ffyrst was whylde ; 
ffarewel, myn owyn dere love ! 



848 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Now alle mankjmde bethe glad with gle, 
ffor deth is deed, as 36 may se, 
And lyff is reysed endles to be 

In hevyn dwellynge above ! 

Whan my sone was nayled on tre, 
Alle women myght rewe with me, 
ffor grettere sorwe myght nevyr non be, 

Than I dede suffyr i-wys. 
But this joy now passyth alle sorwe. 
That my childe suffryd in that hard morwe, 
ffor now he is oure alderers borwe, 

To brynge us alle to blys. 

2\inc evigilabunt miUtes sepukri^ et dicet primus miles. 

Awake ! awake ! 
Hillis gyn quake, 
And tres ben shake 

Ful nere a too. 
Stonys clevyd, 
Wyttys ben revid, 
Erys ben devid, 

I am servid soo. 

Secundus miles. He is aresyn, this is no nay. 
That was deed and colde in clay, — 
Now is he resyn belyve this day, 

Grett woundyr it is to me. 
He is resyn by his owyn myght, 
And fforthe he gothe his wey ful ryght ; 
How xul we now us qwytte, 

Whan Pylat doth us se ? 

Teriius miles. Lete us now go 
Pilat ontoo, 



THE RESURRECTION. 849 

And ryght evyn so, 

As we have sayn, 
The trewthe we say. 
That out of clay, 
He is resyn this day 

That Jewys han slayn. 

Quartus miles. I holde it best, 
Lete us nevyr rest. 
But go we prest 

That it were done.. 
Alle heyl, Pilatt 
In thin astat ! 
He is resyn up latt, 

That thou gast dome. 

Pilat. What I what ! what ! what ! 
Out upon the, why seyst thou that ? 
ffy upon the, harlat, 

How darst thou so say ? 
'^Thou dost myn herte ryght grett grefF! 
Thou lyest upon hym, fals theff ; 
How xulde he rysyn ageyn to lyfF, 

That lay deed in clay ? 

Primus miles. 3a, thow thou be nevyr so wrothe, 
And of these tydandys nevyr so lothe, 
3itt goodly on ground on lyve he gothe, 

Qwycke and levynge man. 
YfF thou haddyst a ben ther we ware. 
In hert thou xuldyst han had gret care. 
And of blysse a ben ryght bare. 

Of colore bothe pale and whan. 

Pilaius. Or 36 come there, 
3e dede alle swere, 



850 COVENTRY MTSTBRIES. 

To fyght in fere. 

And bete and bynde. 
AUe this was trayn, 
30ur wurdes wore vayn, 
This is sertayn, 

30W fak I fynde. 

Secundus miles. Be the dethe the devyl deyd. 
We were of hym so sore atreyd, 
That ffor ffer we us down leyd 

Ryght eyyn upon oure syde. 
Whan we were leyd upon the grounde, 
Stylle we lay as we had be bounde. 
We durst not ryse for a thousand pounde, 

Ne not for alle this worlde so wyde. 

PUatui. Now fly upon 30ur grett host ! 

Alle 30ur wurchep is now lost ; 

In felde, in town, and in every cost, 

Men may 30W dyspravyn. 
Now alle 30ur wurchep it is lorn, 
And every man may 30W we scorn, 
And bydde 30W go syttyn in the com. 

And chare awey the ravyn. 

Tertius miles. 3a, it was hy3 tjrme to leyn oure host, 
ffor whan the body toke a3en the gost, 
He wold a frayd many an ost, 

Kynge, knyght, and knave. 
3a, whan he dede ryse out of his lake. 
Than was ther suche an erthe-quake. 
That alle the worlde it gan to shake. 

That made us ffor to rave. 

Quartus miles. 3a, 3a, herke, ffelawys, what I xal say ; 
Late us not ses be nyght nor day. 



THB RESURRECTION. S51 

But telle the trewthe, lygl^t as it lay, 

In country where we goo. 
And than I dare ley myn heed. 
That thei that Crystes lawys leed, 
They wyl nevyr ses tyl they be deed, 

His dethe that brought hym too. 

Primus miles. Be Belyalle, this was now wele ment ; 
To this cowncelle lete us consent, 
Liett us go tellyn with on assent. 

He is resyn up this day. 
Secundus miles. I grawnt therto, and that forthe 

lyght, 

That he is resyn by his owyn myght, 
ffor ther cam non^ be day nor nyght, 

To helpe hym owte of clay. 

Pilatus. Now, jentyl seres, I yray 30W alle 
Abyde stylle a lytyl thralle, 
Whylle that I myn cowncell calle. 

And here of ther councelle. 
Primus miles. Syr, att 30ur prayour we wyl abyde 
Here in this place a lytel tyde. 
But tary not to longe, flFor we must ryde, — 

We may not longe dwelle. 

Pilatus. Now^ jentyl seres, I pray 30W here. 
Sum good cowncel me to lere. 
fFor sertes, seres, without dwere, 

We stounde in ryght grett dowte. 
Cayphas, Now trewly, sere, I 30W telle. 
This matere is bothe ffers and ffelle, 
Combros it is therwith to melle. 

And evyl to be browth abowte. 



S52 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Annas. Syr Pylat, thou grett justyse, 

Thow thou be of witty s wyse, 

3it herke fful sadly with good devyse, 

What that thou xalt do. 
I counsel the, be my reed, 
This wundyrful tale pray hem to hede. 
And upon this 3eve hem good mede, 

Bothe golde and sylver also. 

And, sere, I xalle telle 30W why. 
In 30ure erys prevyly, 
Betweyn us thre serteynly, 

Now herk, seres, in 30ur erys ! 

Hic/aciant Pilatus, Cayphas^ et Jnnas^ privatim inter 
se, conrilium ; quoJinitOj dicat, 

Annas. fFor mede dothe most in every qwest, 
And mede is mayster, bothe est and west, 
Now trewly, seres, I held this best, 

With mede men may bynde berys. 

Cayphas. Sekyr, sere, this eounselle is good ; 
Pray these knyghtes to chaunge ther mood ; 
3eve then golde, ffeste, and ffood, 

And that may chaunge ther wytt. 
PyUUt. Seres, 30ure good councel I xalle fulfyUe : 
Now, jentyl knyhtes, come hedyr me tylle, 
I yray 30W, seres, of 30ur good wylle, 

No ferther that 3e fflytt, 

Jentyl knyhtes, I 30W pray, 
A bettyr sawe that 3e say ; 
Sey ther he was cawth away 

With his dyscyplis be nyght. 



THE RESURRECTION. 358 

Sey he was with his dyscyplis ffett, 
I wolde 36 worn in 3 our sadelys ssett, 
And have here gold in a purs knelt. 

And to Rome rydyth ryght. 

Quartus miles. Now, Syr Pylatt, 
We gon oure gatt, 
We wylle not prate 

No lengere now. 
Now we have golde, 
No talys xul be tolde 
To whithtes on wolde. 

We make the a vow. 

Pilatus. Now, 3e men of mythe, 
As 3e han hyght, 
Evyn so forthe ryght, 

30ure wurdys not falle. 
And 3e xul gon 
With me anon, 
AUe everychon 

Into myn halle. 

Primus miles. Now hens we go 
As lyth as ro ; 
And ryght evyn so 

As we han seyd, 
We xul kepe counsel, 
Where so evyr we dwelle 
We xul no talys telle, — 

Be not dysmayd. 



AA 



XXXVl. THE THREE MARIES. 



Hie venient ad sepulcrum Maria Magdalene, Maria 
Jacobi, et Maria Solomce ; et dicit Maria Magdalene, 

Swete systeryn, I 30W beseche, 
Heryght now my specyal speche ; 
Go we with salvys ffbr to leche 

Cryst that tliolyd wounde. 
He hath us wonnyn owt of wreche ; 
The ryght wey God wyl us teche 
fTor to seke my lorde, my leehe, 

His blood hath me uubownde. 

yij. devyls in me were pyght: 

My love, my lord, my God Almyght, 

Awey he weryd tho ffyndys wight 

With his wyse wurde. 
He droff fro me the fendes lees, 
In myn swete sowle his chawmere I ches, 
In me belevyth the lorde of pes, 

I go to his burryenge boorde. 

Maria Jacobi. My systeres sone I woot he was. 
He lyth in here as sunne in glas. 
The chylde was born by oxe and asse 

Up in a bestys stalle. 
Thow his body be gravyd undyr gras, 
The grete godhede is nevyr the lasse, 
The Lord xal rysyn and gon his pas, 

And comfortyn his ffrendys alle. 



THE THREE MABIB8, S55 

Maria Sahma:. My name is Mary Salome^ 
His modyr and I systeres we be, 
Annys dowteres we be alle thre,— 

Jhesu, we be thin awntys. 
The naylis gun his lemys feyn, 
And the spere gan punche and peyn, 
Ontho woundys we wold have eyn, 

That grace now God graunt us. 

Maria Magdalene, Now go we stylle. 
With good wylle, 

Ther he is leyd. 
He deyd on crowche, 
We wolde hym towche. 

As we han seyd. 

Tunc respicii Maria Magdalene in sepulcro, dicenSy 

Where is my Lord that was here, 
That for me bledde bowndyn in brere ? 
His body was beryed rygh by this mere. 

That ffor me gan deye. 
The Jewys, ffekylle and flFals ffownde. 
Where have thei do the body with wounde ? 
He lythe not upon this grownde. 

The body is don aweye. 

Maria Jacobi. To my Lorde, my love, my ffrende, 
SsLjn wolde I salve a spende. 
And I myght aught amende 

His woundys depe and wyde. 
To my lorde I owe lowlytc, 
Bothe homage and fewte 
I wolde with my dewt^ 

A softy d liand and syde. 

A a2 



856 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Maria Salome. To myghtfful God omnypotent, 
I here a boyst of oynement ; 
I wold han softyd his sore dent. 

His sydys al abowte. 
Lombe of Love withowt lothe, 
I ffynde the not, myn hert is wroth, 
In the sepulcre ther lyth a cloth, 

And jentyl Jhesu is owte. 

Angelus. Wendyth fTorthe, 3e women thre, 
Into the strete of Galyld ; 
30ur Savyour ther xul 3e se 

Walkynge in the waye. 
3 our ffleschely lorde now hath lyff, 
That deyd on tre with strook and stry ff ; 
Wende fforthe, thou wepynge wyflF, 

And seke hym, I the saye. 

Now, gothe flforthe ffast alle thre 
To his dyscyplys ffayr and fre, 
And to Petyr the trewthe telle 36, — 

Therof have 3e no dreed. 
Spare 3e not the soth to say, 
He that was deed and closyd in clay, 
He is resyn this same day, 

And levyth with woundys reed. 

Maria Magdalen. A, myrthe and joye in herte we have ! 
ffor now is resyn out of his grave. 
He levyth now oure lyf to save, 

That dede lay in the clay. 
Maria Jacoby. In hert I was ryght sore dysmayd, . 
The aungel to us whan that he sayd 
That Cryst is resyn ; I was affrayd 

The aungel whan I say. 



THE THREE MARIES. 357 

Maria Salome. Now lete us alle thre fulfylle 
Tlie angelys wurde and Goddys wylle, 
Lett us sey, with voys wul shrylle, 

Cryst that Jewys dede sle, 
Oure Lord that naylyd was on the rode^ 
And betyn out was his bodyes blode. 
He is aresyn, thoughe they ben wode ; 

A, Lorde ! 3itt wele thou be ! 

Maria Magdalene dicit Petro ei cateris apostolis^ 

Bretheryn alle, in herte be glad, 

Bothe blythe and joyful in herte ful fayn, 

ffor ryght good tydandys have we had 

That oure Lord is resyn agayn ! 
An aungel bade us ryght thus sertayn. 
To the, Petyr, that we xulde telle, 
How Cryst is resyn, the whiche was slayn, 

A lovynge man evyr more to dwelle. 

Maria Jacobi. To lyve is resyn ageyn that Lorde, 

The qwyche Judas to Jewys solde; 
Of this I here ryght trewe recorde. 

By wurdys that the aungel tolde. 
Now myrthe and joye to man on molde ! 

Every man now myrthe may have ! 
He that was closyd in cley ful colde 

This day is resyn owt of his grave ! 

Petrus. Sey me, systeryn, with wurdys blythe. 

May I troste to that 36 say ? 
Is Cryst resyn ageyn to lyve, 

That was ded and colde in clay ? 
Maria Salome. 3a, trostythe us truly, it is no nay ; 

He is aresyn, it is no les ; 



S88 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

And so an aungel us toUle this day, 
With opyn voys and speche expires. 

Johannes, 3a, these be tydynges of ryght gret blys, 

That oure mayster resyn xulde be ; 
I wyl go renne in hast i-wys, 

And loke my Lord yf I may se. 
Petrus. ffor joye also I renne with tlie. 

My brother John, as I the say ; 
In hast anon evyn forthe go we, — 

To his grave we renne oure way. 

Hie currunt Johannes et Petrus simul ad sepulcrum ; 
ei Johannes prius venil ad monumentuniy sed non inirai. 

Johannes. The same shete here I se 

That Crystys body was in wounde ; 
But he is gon, where so ever he be. 

He lyth not here upon this grownde. 

Petrus intrat monumentuniy et dicit Petrus, 

In this comere the shete is fownde. 

And here we fynde the sudary 
In the whiche his hed was wounde. 

Whan he was take from Calvary. 

Hie intrat Johannes monumentum, dicens, 

The same sudary and the same shete. 

Here with my syth I se bothe tweyn ; 
Now may I wele knowe and wete. 

That he is rysyn to lyve ageyn. 
Onto oure bretheryn lete us go seyn 

The trewthe ryght hevyn as it is ; 
Oure mayster lyvythe, the wheche was slayn, 

AUemyghty Lorde and kynge of blys. 



THE THREE MARIES. 359 

Petrui. No lengere here wylle we dwelle, 

To oure bretheryn the wey we take ; 
The trewthe to them whan that we telle, 

Grett joye in hert than wul thei make. 

Hie Petrus loquitur omnibus cgpostolis rimul collectis. 

Bethe mery, bretheryn, for Crystys sake, — 
That man that is oure mayster so good, 

ffrom deth to lyve he is awake. 
That sore was rent upon the rood. 

Johannes. As women seyd so have we fownde, 

Remevyd awey we saw the ston ; 
He lyth no lengere undyr the grownde, 

Out of his grave oure mayster is gou. 

Omnes congregatus Thomas. 

We have grett woundyr everychon 

Of these wurdys that 30 do speke ; 
A ston ful hevy lay hym upon, 

ffrom undyr that ston how xuld he breke ? 

Petrus. The trewthe to tellyn it passyth oure witt, 

Wethyr he be resyn thorwe his owyn myght. 
Or ellys stolyn out of his pitt 

Be sum man prevely be nyght. 
That he is gon we saw with syght, 

ffbr in his grave he is nowth ; 
We cannot tellyn in what plyght, 

Out of his grave that he is browth. 



XXXVII. CHRIST APPEARING TO 



MARY. 



Maria Magdalene goth to the grave, and wepyth, 
and seyth. 

Sot hertyly sorwe myn herte dothe breke, 

With wepynge terys I wasche my face ; 
Alas ! ffbr sorwe I may not speke. 

My Lorde is gon that hereinne wase : 
Myn owyn dere Lorde and kynge of gras, 

That vij. develys ffro me dyd take, 
I kan nat se hym, alas ! alas ! 

He is stolyn awey owt of this lake. 

Aungelus. Woman, that stondyst here alone ? 

Why dost thou wepe, and morne, and wepe so sore ? 
What cawse hast thou to make suche mone ? 

Why makyst thou suche sorwe^ and wherefore ? 
Maria Magdalene. I have gret cawse to wepe evyrmore ; 

My Lord is take out of his grave, 
Stolyn awey and fro me lore, 

I kannot wete where hym to have. 

Hie parum deambukt a sepulcro, dicens, 

Alas ! alas ! what xal I do ? 

My Lord awey is fro me take ; 
A, woful wrecche ! whedyr xal I go ? 

My joye is gon owth of this lake. 



CHRIST APPEARING TO MARY. 861 

Jhesus, Womoii, suche mornynge why dost thou luake ? 

Why is thi chere so hevy and badde ? 
Why dost thou sythe so sore and qwake ? 

Why dost thou wepe so sore and sadde ? 

Maria Magdalene. A grettyr cawse had nevyr woman, 

ffor to wepe bothe nytli and day, 
Than I myself have in serteyn, 

And for to sorwyn evyr and ay. 
Alas ! ffor sorwe myn hert doth blede, 

My Lorde is take fro me away ; 
I muste nedys sore wepe and grede ; 

Where he is put I kan not say. 

But, jentyl gardener, I pray to the. 

If thou hym took out of liis grave. 
Telle me qwere I may hym se. 

That I may go my Lorde to have. 
Jhesus. MARIA. 
Maria Magdalene. A ! mayster and Lorde to the I crave. 

As thou art Lord and kynge of blys ! [Spectans, 

Graunt me. Lord, and thou vowchesave 

Thyn holy ffete that I may kys ! 

JhestLS. Towche me nott as 3ett, Mary, 

ffor to my fadyr I have not ascende ; 
But to my bretheryn in hast the hy}, 

With these gode wurdys here care amende. 
Sey to my bretheryn that I intende 

To stey to my fadyr and to 30wre, 
To oure Lord both God and frende, 

I wyl ascende to hevyn towre. 

In hevyn to ordeyn 30W a place. 
To my ffadyr now wyl I go ; 



362 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

To merthe, and joye, and grett solace. 

And endeles blys to brynge 30W to. 
ffor man I sufferyd both schame and wo, 

More spyteful deth nevyr man dyd take, 
3it wyl I ordeyn ffor al this, lo. 

In hevyn an halle for mannys sake 1 

Maria Magddb/n. Gracyous Lord, at 3our byddyng. 

To alle my bretheryn I xal go telle 
How that 3e be man levynge, 

Quyk and qwethynge of flesche and ffelle. 
Now alle hevynes I may expelle. 

And myrth and joy now take to me ; 
My Lord that I have lovyd so wele. 

With opyn syght I dede hym se. 

Whan I sowght my Lord in grave, 

I was fful sory and ryght sad ; 
ffor syght of hym I myght non have, 

ffor momynge sore I was nere mad. 
Grettere sorwe 3it nevjrr whithe had. 

Whan my Lord awey was gon. 
But now in herte I am so glad. 

So grett a joy nevyr wyff had non. 

How myght I more gretter joye have. 
Than se that Loi*de with opyn syght. 

The whiche my sowle from synne to save, 
firom develys sefne he mad me qwyght ? 

There kan no tounge my joye expres. 

Now I Iiave seyn my Lorde on lyve ; 
To my bretheryn I wyl me dresse. 

And telle to hem a non ryght belyve : 



CHRIST APPEARING TO MART. 363 

With opyn speche I xal me shry ve, 
And telle to hem, with wurdys pleyn 

How that Cryst ffrom deth to ly ve, 
To endles blys is resyn ageyn. 

Bretheryn, al blyth ^e be, 

ffor joyful tydynges tellyn I lean ; 
I saw oure Lorde Cryst, lyste wel to me, 

Of flesche and bon quyk levynge man. 
Beth glad and joyful, as for than, 

flbr trost me trewly it is ryght thus, 
Mowthe to mowthe, this is sertayn, 

I spak ryght now with Cryst Jhesus. 

Petrtis. A woundyrful tale forsothe is this : 

Ever onowryd oure Lorde mote be ! 
We pray the, Lord, and kynge of blys, 

Onys thi presence that we may se ! 
Ere thu ascende to thi magestc, 

Gracyous God, if that 36 plese. 
Late us have sum syght of the, 

Oure careful hertes to sett in ease ! Amen ! 

Explicit qpparicio Marice Magdalen. 



XXXVllI. THE PILGRIM OF EMAUS. 



Hie incipii aparicio Cleophce et Luca. 

Cleqphas. My brother, Lucas, I 30W pray, 

Flesynge to 30W if that it be, . 
To the castel of Emawus, a lytyl way. 

That 3e vowchesaf to go with me. 
Lucas. Alle redy, brother, I walke with the 

To 3one castelle with ryght good chere ; 
Evyn togedyr anon go we. 

Brother Cleophas, we to in fere. 

Ckqphas. A ! brother Lucas ! I am sore mevyd, 

Whan Cryst oure mayster comyth in my mynde ; 
Whan that 1 thynke how he was grevyd, 

Joye in myn herte kan I non fynde ; 
He was so lowlye, so good, so kynde, 

Holy of lyf, and meke of mood ; 
Alas ! the Jewys thei were to blynde, 

Hym for to kylle that was so good ! 

Lucas. Brothyr Cleophas, 3e sey ful soth. 

They were to cursyd and to cruelle ; 
And Judas that trajrtor, he was to lothe 

ffor golde and sylvyr his mayster to selle. 
The Jewys were redy hym for to qwelle. 

With skorgys bete out alle his blood ; 
Alas ! thei were to fers and ffelle ; 

Shamfully thei henge hym on a rood ! 



THE PILORIM OF EMAUS. 365 

Cleophoi. 3a, betwen to thevys, alas ! for shame. 

They henge hjrm up with body rent ; 
Alas ! alas I they were to blame, 

To cursyd and cruel was ther intent. 
Whan for thurste he was nere shent, 

Ey3il and galle thei 30vyn hym to drynke ; 
Alas ! for ruthe his detbe thei bent 

In a ffowle place of horryble stynke ! 

JLucas. 3a, and cawse in hym cowde they non fynde ; 

Alas, for sorwe ! what was here thought ? 
And he dede helpe bothe lame and blynde, 

And alle seke men that were hym browght : 
A3ens vice alwey he wrought, 

Synfulle dede wold he nevyr do, 
3it hym to kylle thei sparyd nought ; 

Alas ! alas ! why dede they so ? 

Jhesus. Welle ovyrtake, 3e serys in same. 

To walke in felachep with 30W I pray. 
Lucas, Welcom, serys, in Goddys name ! 

Of good felachep we sey not nay. 
Jhesiis. Qwhat is 30ur langage, to me 36 say. 

That 36 have to-gedyr, 3e to ? 
Sory and evysum 36 ben alway, 

30ur myrthe is gon ; why is it so ? 

Cleqphas. Sere, me thynkyth thou art a pore pylgrym 

Here walkynge be thiselfe alone, 
And in the cet6 of Jerusalem, 

Thou knowyst ryght lytyl what ther is done j 
fFor pylgrymys comyn and gon ryth sone, 

Ryght lytyl whyle pylgrymes do dwelle ; 
In alle Jerusalem as thou hast gone, 

I trowe no tydynges that thou canst telle. 



366 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Jhems. Why, in Jberusalem what tliynge is wrought? 

What tydynges fro thens brynge 36 ? 
Lucas. A ! ther have they slayn a man for nought ; 

Gyltles he was^ as we telle the ; 
An holy prophete with God was he, 

Myghtyly in wurde and eke in dede; 
Of God he had ryght grett poost^, 

Amonge the pepyl his name gan sprede. 

He hyght Jhesu of Na5arethe, 

A man he was of ryght grett fame ; 
The Jewys hym kylde with cruel dethe. 

Without trespas or any blame : 
Hym to scome they had grett game. 

And naylid hym streyte ontylle a tre ; 
Alas ! alas ! me thynky th grett shame, 

Without cawse that this xulde be. 

Cleqphas. 3a, sere, and ryght grett troste in hym we had, 

AUe Israel country that he xuld save ; 
The thrydde day is this that be was clad 

In coold cley and leyd in grave. 
3itt woundyrful tydynges of hym we have. 

Of women that sought hym befom day-lythe ; 
Wethyr they sey truthe or ellys do rave. 

We can not telle the trewe verdythe. 

Whan Cryst in grave tliei cowde not se. 

They comyn to us and evyn thus tolde. 
How that an aungelle seyd to them thre, 

That he xuld leve with brest fful bolde. 
3itt Petyr and John preve this wolde. 

To Crystys grave they ran, thei tweyne ; 
And whan they come to the grave so coolde. 

They fownde the women fful trewe serteyne. 



THE PILGRIM OF EMAUS. 867 

Jhems. A ! 36 ffonnys and slough t of herte 

fFor to beleve in holy Scrypture ! 
Have not prophetys with wurdys smerte. 

Spoke be tokenys in signifure. 
That Cryste xuld deye ffor 30ur valure. 

And syth entre his joye and blys ? 
Why be 36 of herte so dure. 

And trust not in Grod that myghtful is ? 

Bothe Moyses and Aaron and othyr nu), 

In holy Scrypture 36 may rede it, 
Of Crystis dethe thei spak also, 

And how he xuld ryse out of his pitt. 
Owt of ffeyth than why do 30 fflitte, 

Whan holy prophetys 30W teche so pleyne ? 
Tume 30ur thought and chaunge 30ur witte, 

And truste wele that Cryst dothe leve ageyne. 

Lucas. Leve ageyn ! man, be in pes ; 

How xulde a ded man evyr aryse ? 
I cowncelle the suche wurdys to ses, 

flfor dowte of Pylat, that hy3 justyce. 
He was slayn at the gre asyse, 

Be councelle of lordys many on ; 
Of suche langage take bettyr avyse, 

In every company ther thou dost gon, 

Christus. Trewthe dyd nevyr his maystyr shame ; 

Why xulde I ses than trewth to say ? 
Be Jonas the prophete I preve the same. 

That was in a whallys body iij. nyghtis and iij. day ; 
So longe Cryst in his grave lay. 

As Jonas was withinue the se ; 
His grave is brokyn that was of clay, 

To lyflF resyn a3en now is he. 



368 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Cleophas. Sey nott so, man, it may not be, 

Thow thyn exaumple be sumdele good ; 
ffor Jonas on lyve evyr more was he, 

And Cryst was slayn upon a rood. 
The Jewys on hym they were so wood, 

That to his herte a spere they pyght, 
He bled owt alle his herte blood ; 

How xulde the thanne ryse with myght? 

Christus, Take hede at Aaron and his dede styk, 

Whiche was ded of his nature. 
And 3it he floryschyd with flowres ful thyk. 

And bare almaundys of grett valure. 
The dede styk was signifure, 

Holy Cryst that shamfully was deed and slayn. 
As that dede styk bare frute ful pure, 

So Cryst xuld ryse to lyve ageyn. 

Lucas. That a deed styk ffrute xulde here, 

I merveyle sore therof i-wys ; 
But 3itt hymsylf ffro dethe to rere. 

And leve ageyn, more woundyr it is. 
That he doth leve, I trost not this, 

ffor he hath bled his blood so red ; 
But 3itt of myrthe evyr moor I mys, 

Whan I have mende that he is ded. 

Chri$tu8. Why be 30 so harde of tniste ? 

Dede not Cryste reyse, thorwe his owyn myght, 
La3arus that deed lay undyr the duste, 

And stynkyd ryght foule, as I 30W plyght ? 
To lyff Cryst reysid hym a3en ful ryght 

Out of his grave, this is serteyn ; 
Why may nat Cryste hymself thus qwyght, 

And ryse from dethe to lyve ageyn P 



THE PILGRIM OF EBCAU8. 809 

Cleophoi. Now tarewly, sere, 30ur wurdys ben good| 

I have in 30W ryght grett delyght ; 
I pray 30W, sere, with mylde mood, 

To dwelle with us alle this nyght. 
Ckrisius. I must gon hens anon ful ryght, 

ffor grett massagys I have to do ; 
I wolde abyde, yf that I myght. 

But at this tyme I must hens go. 

Lucas. 36 xal not gon fro us this nyght, 

It waxit alle derke, gon is the day. 
The Sonne is downe, lorn is the lyght^«— 

3e xal not gon from us away. 
Chriatus. I may not dwelle, as I 30W say^ 

I must this nyght go to my ffrende ; 
Therfore, good bretheryn, I 30W pray, 

Lett me not my wey to wende. 

Cleophas. Trewly from us 30 xal not go, 

3e xal abyde with us here stylle ; 
3our goodly daljraunce plesyth us so. 

We may nevyr have of 30W oure fylle« 
We pray 30W, sere, with herty wylle, 

Alle nyght with us abyde and dwelle ; 
More goodly langage to talkyn us tylle. 

And of 3 our good dalyaunce more ffor to telle. 

Lucas. 3 a, brothyr Cleophas, be myn assent, 

Lete us hym kepe with strenthe and myght ; 
Sett on 30wre hand with good entent, 

And puUe hym with us the wey welle ryght. 
The day is done sere, and now it is nyght ; 

Wliy wole 3e hens now from us go ? 
39 xal abyde, as I 30W plyght; 

30 xal not walke this nyght us ffro. 

B B 



ITO COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Cleophas. This nyght fro ua )e go not away, 

We xal 30W kepe betwen us tweyne ; 
To us therfore je say not nay, 

But walke with us, the wey is pleyne. 
Chrislus. Sythya 3c kupe me with myght and mayn. 

With herty wylle I xal abyde. 
Lucas. Of jour abydyng we be ful fayn. 

No man more welkom in this werd wyde. 

Cleophas, Off cure mayster Cryst Jhesu 

ffor je do speke bo raeche good, 
I love 30W liertyly, trust me trew. 

He was bothe meke and mylde of luood. 
Of hym to apeke is to me food ; 

If 36 had knows hym, I dare wet say. 
And in what plyght with hym it stood, 

}e wold have thought oq hym many a day. 

Lucas. Many a day, 3a, 5a, i-wys 

He was a roan of holy levynge, 
Thow he had be the cbilde of God in blys, 

Bothe wyse and woundyrfulle was his werkynge. 
But aftere 30ur labour and ferre walkynge, 

TakytJi this loff and etythe sum bred } 
And than wyl we have more tatkynge 

Of Cryat oure may^tyr, that is now ded. 



Chrislus. Bethe mery and glad, with hert fful fre, 

ffor of Cryst Jhcsu, that was jour ffrende, 
36 xal have tydynges of game and gle 

Withinne a whyle, or je hena wende. 
With myn hand this bred I blys. 

And breke it here, as 30 do se ; 
I jeve 30W parte also of this, 

This bred to ete and blyliie to be. 



THE PILGaUI OF EMAU8. 871 



Hie subiio &otdat Ckristus ab ocuHs eorum. 
A, mercy, God ! what was oure happe ? 

Was not oure hert with love brennynge. 
Whan Cryst oure mayster so nere oure lappa 

Dede att and speke suche suete talkynge ? 
He is now quyk and man Ijrvenge, 

That fyrst was slayn and put in grave ; 
Now may we chaunge alle oure momynge, 

fibr oure Lord is resyn his servauntes to save ! 

Lucas. Alas ! for sorwe, what hap was this ? 

Whan he dyd walke with us in way. 
He prevyd by Scripture, ryght wel i-wys. 

That he was resyn from undyr clay. 
We trustyd hym not^ but evyr seyd nay ; 

Alas, for shame ! why seyd we so ? 
He is resyn to ly ve this day. 

Out of his grave oure Lord is go ! 

Ckophas. Latt us here no lengere dwelle. 

But to oure bretheryn the wey we wende ; 
With talys trewe to them we telle 

That Cryst dothe leve, oure mayster and frende. 
Lucas. I graunt therto with hert ful hende, 

Lete us go walke forthe in owre way ; 
I am ful joyfulle in hert and mende, 

That owre Lord levyth, that fyrst ded lay. 

Cleophas. Now was it not goodly don 
Of Cryst Jhesu, oure mayster dere ; 

He hath with us a large wey gon. 
And of his uprysyng he dede us lere. 

Whan he walkyd with us in fere, 
And we supposyd hym bothe deed and colde. 



872 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

That he was aresyu ffrom undyr here. 
Be holy Scripture the trewthe he tolde. 

Lucas. Ryght lovyngely don forsoth this was. 

What myght owre mayster tyi us do more, 
Than us to chere that fforthe dede pas, 

And fFor bis dethe we murnyd ful sore ? 
ffor love of hjrm owre myrthe was lore. 

We were flFor hym ryght hevy in herte ; 
But now owre myrthe he doth restore, 

ffor he is resyn bothe heyl and qwert. 

Cleqphas. That he is thus resyn I have grett woundjrr. 

An hevy ston ovyr hym ther lay 5 
How shulde he breke the ston asoundyr. 

That was deed and colde in clay ? 
Every man this mervayle may. 

And drede that Lorde of mekyl myght ; 
But 3it of this no man sey nay, 

ffor we have seyn hym with opyn syght 

Lucas. That he doth leve, I woot wel this, 

He is aresyn with flesche and blood 5 
A levynge man forsothe he is, 

That rewly was rent upon a rood. 
AUe heyl ! dere brothyr, and chaunge 30ur mood, 

ffor Cryst doth levyn and hath his hele ; 
We walkyd in wey with Cryst so good. 

And spak with hym wurdys fele. 

Cleophas. Evyn tylle £mawus the grett castelle 

ffrom Jerusalem with hym we went, 
Syxti ffurlonge, as we 30W telle, 

We went with hym evyn passent. 



THE PILGRIM OF EMAUS. 373 

He spak with us with good entent, 

That Cryst xuld leve he tolde tylle us, 
And previd it be Scripture verament ; 

Trust me trewe, it is ryght thus ! 

Lucas. 3a, and whan he had longe spokyn us tylle, 

He wold ffrom us a gon his way ; 
With strenght and myght we keptyn hym stylle, 

And bred we tokyn hym to etyn in fay. 
He brak the loff, as evyn on tway, 

As ony sharpe knyff xuld kytt breed ; 
Therby we knew the trewthe that day 

That Cryst dede leve and was not deed. 

Peirus. Now trewly, serys, I have grett woundyr 

Of these grete merveylis that }e us telle ; 
In brekynge of bred fful evyn asoundyr, 

Oure mayster ye knew and Lord ryght welle. 
3e sey Cryst levith that Jewys dyd qwelle, 

Tylle us glad tydynges, this is serteyn, 
And that oure mayster with 30W so longe dede dwelle, 

It dothe wel preve that he levith ageyn. 

A ! brother Thomas, we may be ryght glad 

Of these gode novelle that we now have ; 
The grace of oure lorde God is over us alle sprad, 

Oure Lord is resyn his servauntys to save. 
ITiomas. Be in pes, Petyr, thou gynnyst to rave, 

Thy wurdys be wantowne and ryght unwyse ; 
How xulde a deed man, that deed lay in grave, 

With qwyk fflesche and blood to ly ve ageyn ryse ? 

Petrus. 318, Thomas, dowte the not, oure mayster is on 
lyve ! 
Record of Mawdelyn and of here systeres too. 



374 



COVENTRY MT8TEHTES. 



Cleophas and Lucas, the trewthe fFor to contryve, 
ffro Jerusalem to Emawswith hym dede they go, 

Thomas. I may uevyr in hert trust that it is so ; 
He was ded on cros and colde put in pitt. 

Kept with knyghtes iiij,, his grave sealyd also, 

How xulde he levyn ageyn that so streyte was shitt ? 

Pttrus. Whan Mawdeiyn dede telle us that Cryst was 
aresyn, 

I ran to his grave, and John ran with rae ; 
In trewthe tlier we ffownde he lay not in presyn, 

Gon out of his grave and on lyve than was he. 
Therfore, dere brother Thomas, I wole rede the 

Stedfastly thou trust lliat Cryst is not deed ; 
ffeythfully beleeve a qwyk man tliat he be, 

Aresyn from his deth by myght of his Godhed. 

Thomas. I may nevyr beleve these woundyr mervelee, 

Tyl that I have syght of every grett wounde, 
And put in my ffyngyr in place of the nayles, 

I xal nevyr beleve it ellys (for no man on grownde. 
And tylle that myn liand the sperys pytt hath fownde, 

Whiche dede cleve his hert and made hym sprede his 
blood, 
I xal nevyr beleve that lie is qwyk and sownde. 

In trewth whyl I knowe tliat he was dede on rood. 



Petrvs. Crys^t be thi coraforte and chawnge thi bad witt! 

ffor ffeytlie but thou have thi sowie is but lorn ; 
^Vith stedfast beleve God euforme the jitt. 

Of a meke mayde as he was ffor us born. 
Christui. Pees be amonge jow, hehotde how I am torn, 

Take liede of myn handys, my dere brothyr Tliomae. 
Thomas. My God and my Lorde, nyght and every morn 

I aske mercy, Lorde, ffor my grett Ireepas. 



THE PILGEIM OF EMADS. 375 

ChrUlus. Beliolde wele, Thomas, my woundys so wyde 

Whiche I have sufferyd ffor alle mankynde ; 
Put tliin hool hand into my rvght sydc, 

And in myn hert hlood thin hand that thou wynde. 
So ffoythffuUe a ffrend were mayst thou fynde ? 

Be stedfast in feythe, beleve wel in me j 
Be thou not dowtefFul of me in thi mynde, 7 

But trust that I teve that deed was on a tre. 

Thomas. My Lord and my God, with syght do I ae 

That thou art now qwyk, whiche henge deed on rode j 
More feythful than I ther may no man be, 

fibr myn hand have I wasehe in thi precyous blode. 
Chrislua. ffor thou hast me aeyn, therfore thi ffeyth is 
good, 

But blyssyd be tho of this that have no syght. 
And beleve in me, they ffor here meke mood 

Shalle come into hefne, my blysse that is so bryght ! 

Tfiomaa. As a ravascliyd man whoa witt is alle gon, 

Grett mornynge I make fFor my dredfFul dowte ; 
Alas ! I was dowteful that Crysst from undyr ston 

Be liis owyn grett myght no wyse myght gone owte. 
Alas ! what mevyd me thus in my thought ? 

My dowtefful beleve ryght sore me avexit, 
The trewthe do I knowe that God so hath wrought. 

Quod mortuus et sepultus nunc resurrexit I 

He that was bothe deed and colde put in grave, 

To lyve is arysen by his owyn myght ; 
In his dere herte blood myn hand wasehe I have. 

Where that the spere poynt was peynfuUy pyght. 
I lake me to feyth, fforsakynge alle unryght. 

The dowte that I had fful sore me avexit, 
ffor now have I seyn with ful opyn syght. 

Quod mortuus cl sepultus nunc resurrexit! 



876 COVENTRY MY3TERIES, 

I truEtyd no talys tliBt were me tolde, 

Tylle that myn liand dede in his hert blood wade ; 
My dowte dothe aprevjn Cryst levynge fful bolde, 

And is a grett argument in feyth us to glade. 
Tliou man that seyst this, ffrom feyth nevyr thou ffade, 

My dowte xal evyr chere the, that sore me avexit ; 
Truste wele in Cryst that suche meracle liath made, 

Quod mortuUB et sepultus nunc resnrrexit ! 

The prechynge of Petir might not conrerte me, 

Tyllel felyd the woundethat the spere dydecleve;- 
I trustyd nevyr he levyd that deed was on a tre, 

Tylle that his herte blood dede renne in my sieve. 
Thus be my grett dowte oure feyth may we preve, 

Behold my hlody hand to feyth that me avexit. 
Be syght of this myrroure ffrom feyth not remeve, 

Quod mortuus et sepultus nunc resurrexit ! 

Thow that Mary Magdalyn in Cryst dede sone beleve, 

And I was longe dowteful, 3itt putt me in no blame ; 
ffor be ray grett dowte oure ffeyth may we preve, 

A]ens alle tho eretykys that speke of Cryst shame. 
Truste wel Jhesu Cryst, the Jewys kyllyd the same, 

The ffende hath he fferyd oure feyth that evyr avexit ; 
To hevyn jow brynge and save jow alle in same, 

That mortuus et sepultus iterum resurrexit 1 Amen. 



^ 



XXXIX. THE ASCENSION. 



Hie inc^ (zscendo Domini nostri cum Maria et 
dedm disc^mUs et duobit angelis sedentibus in albi 
Jhemu dicU diedptdis stds ete, 

Jhe9U8. Pax vobis 1 amonge 30W pes, 

Bothe love, and reste, and charyt^, 
Amonge all vertues lete it not ses, 

ffor amonge alle vertues prynspal his he. 
^ be to blame I may wel preve, 

ffor I wyl use to 30W wurdys pleyn, 
That 3 e be so hard of herte to beleve. 

That from dethe to lyve I am resyn ageyn. 

Nottwithstondynge, as 3e knowe serteyn, 

To 30W viij. sythys aperyd have I, 
Be soundry tymes the trewth to seyn, 
And this is the ix. tjone sothly, 
Evyn and no mo. 
But now sum mete 
Anon doth gete, 
ffor I wyl ete 

With 30W, and goo. 

My dyscyplis, here what I sey, 

And to my wourdys 3evythe attencion, 

ffrom Jersalem loke 30 go nott awey, 

But mekely abydyth my fadyres proraicion. 



878 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Off whiche be my niowthe je have have had infor- 
macion, 
Whylle bodyly with jow I was dwellynge, 
ffor John sothly ffor mannys salvacion, 
Onlye in watyr was me baptysynge ; 
But 1 30W be-hete» 
Withinne ffewe days that 30 
In the Holy Goost xul baptyzid be, 
Therfore rysyth up and ffolwyht me 

Onto the mownte of Olyvete. 
Jacobtis major. O Lord ! vowchesaff us for to telle^ 

Iff thou wylt now, withowte more delay, 
Restoryn die kyngdam of Israelle, 

And 3eve us the joye, Lord, that lestyth ay. 

Jhesus. Seres, the tymes and the monthis knowe }e 
ne may, 
Whiche my fedyr hath put in his owyn power f 
But 3e xul take within short day 
Of the Holy Goost the vertu cler. 
Thorwe whiche xul 3e, 
In Jerusalem and in Jury, 
And moreovyr also in Samary, 
And to the worldys ende uttyrly. 
My wjrttnes only be. 

Lovyth no wrathe nor no wronge. 
But levyth in charyt^ with mylde stevyn. 

With myrthe, and melody, and aungelle songe. 
Now 1 stey streyte ffro 30 w to hevyn. 

Hie ascendit ab oculU eorum, et in ccelo cantent, etc* 

Angelas. Retumyth ageyn to 30ur loggynge^ 
To Jerusalem, ffor he wyl thus. 



THE ASCENSION. 879 

His promys mekely ther abydynge, 
ffor dowteles this forseyd Jbesus 

Whiche from 30W is take. 
In a clowde as 30 hym seyn 
Steyng up, so xal comyn ageyn. 
Of al mankynde, this is serteyn, 

Jugement xal he make. 

O ! 3e bretheryn, attendyth to me. 

And takyth good hede what I xal seyn. 
It behovyth the Scripture ffblfyUed to be. 

That of Davyd was seyd with wourdys pleyn. 
Of Judas whiche was the gyde serteyn 

Of hem that Cryst slew cruelly, 
Whiche aftyr ffrom dethe ros up ageyn. 

And hath abedyn in erthe fful days fourty ; 
And aftyr alle this. 
Before oure eye, 
In a bryght skye, 
He dede up stye 

To hevyn blys. 

This seyd Judas was amonge us, 

Noumbryd apoustylle, and had lyche dygnyt^. 
But whan he betrayd oure Lord Jhesus, 

He hynge hymself upon a tre. 
In whos sted muste nedys ordeyned be 

Another, oure noumbre flFor to restore. 
On of tho whiche, as weel knowe we, 

Han be conversaunt here longe before 
In oure company, 
Whiche xal wyttnes 
Benin expresse 
To more and lesse 

Of Crystys resurrexion stedfastly. 



380 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Hie siatueni duos, Joseph Justum ei Mathiam^ etc. 

O ! sovereyn Lorde, whiche of every man 

The hertys dost knowe most inwardly, 
With alle the lowlyness we may or kan. 

To the we prey fful benygnely, 
That thou vowchesaff, thorwe thy mercy, 

Us hym to shewe, whiche in this cas 
Thou lykyst to chesyn effectuously. 

To ocapye the lott of Judas plas ! 

Hie dabunt series et eadet super Maifdam, etc. 

Now gramercy, Lord ! 
And to fulfyUe 
Thin holy wylle. 
As it is skylle, 

We alle accorde ! 



XL. THE DESCENT OF THE HOLY 

GHOST. 



Petrus, 


Andreas, 


Honowre, 


wurchipp, 


Johannes, 


Philippus, 


Glorye, 


grace, 


Thomas, 


Bartholomens, 


Dygnit^, 


vertu. 


Matheus, 


Judas, 


Bewt^, 


blyssynge. 



Modo de die Pentecost ApostoU dicwrU gemifiect. Spi' 
ritus Sanctus decendat super eos, etc. 

Jacobus major. 

and reverens. 

Jacobus minor. 

and goodnes. 

Symon. 

and excellence. 

Matheas. 
and bryghtnes. 

Petrus. Be to that lord heye wurthynes ! 

Andreas. Whiche hath performyd that he us hy^t. 

Jacobus vMijor. And us enbawmyd widi suche swetnes. 

Johannes. Whiche to dyscrye ffer passyth oure myght. 

PMt^ppus. This we alle wel kenne. 

Jacobus minor. Now gracious Lord Jhesu, 

Thomas. Conferme us in thi vertu ! 

Bartholomeus. And graunt us grace evyr it to sew ! 

Symon. Sey we alle togedyr. Amen ! Amen ! 

Et omnes osculant terram. 

Primus Judancs. Now ffelawys, take hede, ffor be my 
. trewthe, 
3ondyr syttyth a dronkyn ffelacheppe. 



S82 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Secundus Judceus. To don hem good it were grett niihe. 
Tertku Judasua. 3a, I prey God 36 ve hem alle shenscheppe. 
Primus Judasus. Muste in here brayn so sclyly dothe 
creppe^ 
That thei cheteryn and chateryn as they jays were. 
Secundu8 Judceus. 3a, were they ony wel browth aselepe^ 
It wore almes to the revere hem to here, 
There hem to baptyze. 
Primus Judcsus. That were^ as thynkyth me, 
A jentyl sporte to se, 
A bettyr game to be 

Cowde no man devyse. 

Petrus. Serys, alas 1 what do 3e mene ? 

Why acome 30 now thus Groddys grace ? 
It is nothynge as 3e do wene^ 

Ther is no drunke man in this place ; 
Wherefore ryght grett is 30wre trespace : 

But, syres, lyst what it doth sygnifye ; 
ffulfyllyd is now to mannys solace, 

Of Johel the pregnaunt prophecye, 
In whiche that he, 
That }e ban seyn, 
Ia wourdys pleyn, 
Declareth serteyn : 

^ Now blyssyd God be ! Amen. 



XLT. THE ASSUMPTION OF THE 
VIRGIN. 



Ad mea facta pater aasit Deus et sua mater! 
Doctor. Rylite worchepful sovereynes, liketh yow to here 

Of the assumpcion of the gloryous moder Mary ? 
That seynt Jhon the evangelist wrot and taulit, as I lere, 

In a book depid Apocriphun, wythnwtyn dyswary. 
At fourten yer sche conseyved Cryste in hire matere clere, 
And in the fiftene yer sclie chyldyd, this avowe dare I ; 
Here lyvyng wyth that awete sone thre and thretty yere, 
And after his deth in erthe xij. yer dede sche tary. 
Now acounte me tliise yeris wysely, 
And I sey the age was of this niaide Marye, 
When sche assumpte above the lerarchye, 
Thre score yer, as Scripture dothe specyfye, 

Legenda Sanctorum autorysyth this trewely. 

She was inhahith in Jurii by the mounte of Syon, 

After the assencion of hir sone conseyved in spoused, 
Alle the holy placys in erthe that Criste duellyd on, 

Devouthly sche went hem honoryng the Godhed ; 
fferste to the place there Criste cristenyd was clepid fflum 
Jordone, 

There he fastyd and takyn was by malicious falshed, 
There he beryed was and rooa victoryously alon. 

There he assendid alle hevenys God in his inanhed ; 
Thus was sche occupyed I rede. 
And meche sche was in the temple preyand. 
Now blissid root eche be ! we owe to be seyand. 



i^il 



i 



381 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

How sche was asEumpte here men echul be plejaiid, 

Preyug you of audience, now ses and tak hede. 

Ces now youre blaberyng in the develis name. 

What, lousy begchis, now ye not se, 
Owre wortliy prynsis, lo ! are gaderid In same. 

That are statis of tliis lond hye men of degre ? 
Dy there hye wisdom they shal now attayne. 

How alte Jur^ beste governyd may be, 
And of this pillid prechouris that oure lawis defame, 

They schul ben skyn as they se or fayn for to He. 
Wherfore in pes be ye. 
And herkenyth onto hem moste stillyn I, 
ffor what boy bragge outh, hyni spilly I, 
As knave wyth this craggyd knad bym kylje I, — 

Now herkenyth oure pryncis alle kneland on kne. 

Episctqms. Now ye prynsis i-prest of the lawe, 

Of this demauude responcyon I asko here anon, 
Ys there ony renogat among us fer as ye knawe. 

Or ony that pcrvertyth the pepU wyth gay eloquens alon? 
Yif there be, we muste onto hem set awe. 

ffor tliey feyne falsly oure feyth, hem preve I houre fon, 
Sweche schul ben bounden up be the beltys til flyes hem blowe, 

And gnaggyd up by the gomys tyl the devyl doth hem grone. 
We may not won, 
To sweche harlotis settyn reddure. 
That geynseyn oure lawe and oure scripture, 
Now let, sere pryncis in purpure. 

In savynge of oure lawys now telle on. 

Primus Princeps. Sere, syn we slew hyra that clepid hym oure 

And si?yde he was Goddis sone Lord over alle ; 
Syn luH deth I herd of no maner rysyng, 

And, lo, yif he hadde levyd he had mad us Jiis thrall. 



THE ASSUMPTION OF THE VIRGIN. 

Therfore oure wysdam was to scliortyn his endyng ; 
over hie I 



1 foule falle. 



\Vho BO clymi 

Sectmdua Princeps. Ya, yit of on thing I warne yow at the 
gynnvng, 
Hia dame is levyng, Maiy that men calle ; 
Myche pepll halt hire wythall j 
Wherfore in peyne of reprefe, 
Yif we suifre hyre thus to reiefe, 
Oure lawyB sche schal make to myschefe, 

And meche schame don us sche schalle. 
^nKopus. A I aere, ye hen bolde i-now, art thou ferd of a 
wenche ? 
What trowyste that sche myht don us agayn ? 
Tertias Princeps. Sere, there are other ia the cootr^ that 
clenche, 
And prechyn he is levyng that we elewe, they seyn ; 
And yif they ben sufferyd thySj this wille bredyn a stench, 

ffor thorow here fayre speche oure lawys they steyn. 
And therfore devyse we now upon this pleyn henche, 
Wliat is beste for to do hem for to atteyn : 
We are but loste, yif they reyn. 
Epi»copHs. Why, let se than, sey me youre ententis. 
Primua. Lete us preson hem, til here myght schent is. 
Secundus. Bettyr is to slen hem wyth dentis. 
T^cius. Nay, best is to hang hem wyth peyu. 
Epiaci^ms. Nay, aeris, nowth so youre better avyse. 

Have in syth before what after may tide ; 
Yif we slewe hem it wolde cause the comownys to ryae, 

And rathere the devyl sle liym than we schulde that abyde. 
But be that seostere ded Mary that fise, 

We shal brenne here body and the aschis hide, 

And don here alie the disptth we can here devise, 

And than sle tho disciplis that walkyn so wyde. 

And here bodyes devyde. 

Halde ye not this beste, as is sayde ? 



386 COVENTBY MYSTERIES. 

Primus Episcopns, Wy th youre wjsdam, sere, weare wel pajed. 
Tlmn ye knylitis, I charge yow, betli arayed. 

And the turmentouiis redy that tyde, 
When Mary is ded. 
And but she deye the sunere, the devyl smyte of here bed. 

Hie est Maria in temjAo orans, el dkejie, 

Maria. O, hyo wysdam, in youre dygne deyt*?, 

Youre infynyth lovnesse mad oure salvacyon, 
That it lyst you of me sympilest to take here huaiaiiite, 

Wyth dew obeschyauns I make you gratulacyon. 
And, glorious Lord and sone, yif it like youre benygnyW, 

Nouth to ben displesid wyth my desideracyon, 
Me longith to youre presease now conjunct to Uie vayti, 

Wyth alle myn herte and my sowle be natures exciUicyon, 
To youre domynacyon. 
Sbr alle creaturie in you don aETye, 
And myciie more owe 1 youre raodyr be alye, 
Syn ye wem born God and man of my bodye. 

To desyre youre prewns that were oure ferke for- 
macyon. 
Sapientia. My suete moderis preyere onto me doth assende, 

Here holy herte and here love is only on me; 
Wherfore, aungyl, to here thou Gchalt now dysaende, 

Seyinge here sche schal comyn to myn eternyt^, 
Myu babuudaunt mercy on here 1 extendo, 

Resservynge here to joye from worldly perplexity. 
And in tokyn tlierof thig palme now pretende, 

Seyinge here sche fere no man of divercyti 
Anffelus Primus. By youre myth I dissende to youre moder 

in virginity'. 
Angelus seamdua. ffor qwyche message injoyeth the hefnely 
consorcyt. 

Hie £aee*del Aiufeliis ; ludenlibtts cilhuris, et dicet Marier, 



THE ASSUMPTION OF THE VIRGIN. 887 

s Angeius. Heyl ! excellent pryncea, Mary, moete pure ! 

Heyl \ radyant sterre, the sunne is not so bryth ! 
Heyl ! moder of mercy, and mayde most mure ! 

The blessyng tliat God yaf Jacob upon you now is lyth 1 
Maria. Now welconi bryth berde, Goddis aungel I sen. 

Ye ben nnessager of allemyhty, wolcora wyth my myhtis; 
I beseke you now say me upon youre hie nortur. 

What is the very name tiiat to youre persone ditli is ? 
jingeiua. What nedilh you, Lady, ray name ben deayrand ? 
Maria. A ! this, gracyows aungyl, I beseke you requyrand. 
Angeius. My name is gret and merveyloua, treuly you telland, 

The hye God youre sone abidyth you in blis, 
The thrydde day hens ye schul ben expirand, 

And assende to the presence there my God youre sone is. 
Maria. Mercy and gromercy, God, now may I be seyand, 

Thankyng you suete aungyi for this message i-wys. 
Angeius. In tokenyng whereof, Lady, I am here presentand 

A braunce of palme, outh of paradis com this; 
Before youre bere God biddith it he bore. 
Maria, Now thanke be to that Lord of his mercy evermore ! 
Angeius. Yowre meknesse, youre lovnesse, and youre hie lore, 

Tb moat acceptable in the Trynit^ syth ; 
Youre sete ryall in hefne apparaled is thore : 

Now dispose yow to deye, youre sone wyl thus rith. 
Maria. I obbeye the commaundement of my God here before; 

But on thyng I beseke that Lord of liis myth, 
That my brether the appostelis myht me be before. 

To se me and I hem or I passe to that lyth ; 
But they ben so deseverid me thynkyth it nyl be. 
Angeius. A .' this, laily, inpossible to God nothyng trowe the. 
fiFor he that sent Abbacuc with mete to Babylonye from Jur^ 

Into the lake of lyonys to Danyel the prophete 
Be an her of his hed, lo, so myhty was he, 

Se the same myiit God make may the Appostolis here mete ; 
And therfore abaschc you not, lady, in yowre holy mende. 
c c 2 



388 CWVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Maria. No more I do, glorious aungyl in kynde ; 
Also I beseke my sone I bg not the fende, 

What tyme outli of this word 1 schal passe hens; 
His horible iok woW fere me so hende, 

Ther is nothyng I dowte but his dredfuU presens. 

Amgelta. What neiSth it to fere you, empres so hende? 

Syn be the fruth of youre body was convycte his vyolens. 
That horible serpent dare not nyhyn youre kende, 
And yowre blosme schal make hym recistens. 
That he schal not pretende. 
Desyre ye outh ellys now rythis ? 
Maria. Nouth, but bleseyd be my God in his myhtys! 
Angelns, To yaw I recotnaunde me than, most excellent in sidiis 
And wyth this agayn to God I assende. 

Hie ascendit angelut. 

Maria. Now, Lonl, thy swete holy name wyth lovnesse I biysse, 

Of qwyche hefne and erthe eche tyme pshalmodyeth ; 
That it lykyth youre mercy me to you to wysse. 

My sjinptl sowle in serteyn youre name magnefyetli. 
Now, holy maydenys, the servauntis of God as I gysse, 

I schal passe from tliis world as thu aungyi sertefyeth ; 
Therfore to my sympii habitacyoo, I telle you now this, 

I purpose me to go, besekyng yow replyeth, 
And assedually wachitb me be dayes and nythis. 



Prima vtrgo. We schal, gracyous I^y, wyth alle oure roythis, 

Schul ye from us passe, swete sonne of socoure. 
That are oure sengler solas radyant in youre lythis, 

Youre peynful absence schal make me doloure. 
yirffo Secunda, Muste excellent princes in ailu vertu that is dilh, 

Alle hefue and erthe. Lady, you doth honure ; 
We schal wachyn and wake, as oure dewe and rytli. 

Into the tyme ye passe to that hye toure. 



THE ASSUMPTION OF THE TrHfilN. 389 

Maria. God thanke you and so do 1; 

Now I wyl dispose me to this jurai redy ; 
So wolde God my bretlier were here me by. 

To here my body that bare Jhesu cure savyoure. 

Hie au/iilo apparei sanctus Johannet evanffelUta ante porlam 
Mariw. 

JohanHe». A ! myrable God, meche is thy myth, 

Many wonderis thou werkyst evyn as thi wylle is ; 
In Pheso I was prechyng a fer contre ryth, 

And by a whyte clowde I was nipt to these hjllys. 
Here duellyth Cristis moder I se veA in syth. 

Sum merveyious message is comyn that mayde tyllej 
I wyl go satuse that berde that in vertu is moste btitli. 

And of my sodeyn comyng wete what is the skele. 

Hie jmltaMl tuper portam, ialranle domnm Maria sibi dicentc, 

Heyl I moder Mary, maydyn perpetualle ! 
Maria. A f welcome, mayde John, wyth alle myn herte in 
specyalle, 

tFor joye of yoare presence myn herte gynnyth sweiue ; 
Thynke ye not, John, how my child etemalle. 

When he hynge on cros sayd us this teme, 
Lo I here thy sone, woman ; so bad he me yoa oalle. 

And you me moder eche otiiir to queme ; 
He betok you the governayl there of my body t«restyalle. 

On mayde to another at convenyens wold seme ; 
And now that gracyows lord hath sent me yow soiie. 
Johannes. Now, good fayr lady, what is ther to done ? 
Tellyth the cause why I am heder sent. 
Maria. Swete sone, John, so wylle I anone ; 
Owre lord God sent to me an aungyl that glent. 

And sayde I schulde passe hens where thre were in one, 
Tho I askyd the aungel to have you present. 



190 



COVENTRY MVSTEBIES. 



I 



Johannes. A ! holy moder, scbul ye from us gone ? 

My brether of this tydyngis sore wyl repent, 
That je scliulil ben absent. 
Ever trybulacyon, Lord, meche thou us sendyst. 
Thou oure maystcr and oure comfort from us ascendist. 
And now cure joye, thy moder, to take thou pretendist, 
Thanne alle oure comfort is from us detent. 
But what seyde then aungy], moder, onto you more ? 
Maria. He brouth me this palme from my sone thore; 

Qwyche I bescke, as the aungy] ine bad. 
That aforn my here by you it be bore, 

Saynge my dirige devouthly and sadj 
(for, John, I have herde the Jewys raeche of me spelle. 
Johannes. A ! good Lady, what Hkylh it you to telle ? 
Maria. Secretly they ordeyne in here conseytis felle. 

When my sowle is paste where Godis sete is. 
To brenne my body and schamly it quelle, 

ffor Jhesu was of me bom that they slew with here fistia ; 
And tlierfore I beseke you, John, both fleche and felle 

Helpe I be beryed, for yn yow my tryst is. 
Johannet. Here yow not, Lady, for I schal wyth you duelle : 

Wolde God my brether were here now and wyst this. 

Hie subito omnes apoaioli cor^egentur anieportum mirantes. 

A '. holy brether, wyth grace be ye met here now : 

Lord God, what menyth this sodeyne congregacjon ? 
Now, swete brother Powle, wyl ye take this upon yow? 

Preye to God for us alle we may have relacyon. 
Paulua. Good brother Peter, how schuld I here pray now. 

That am lest and most unworthy of this congregacyoa ? 
I am not worthy to be clepyd apostle sotidy I say yow, 

ffor as a wood man ageyn Holy Cherche I mad persecucyon, 
But nevertheles I am the grace of God in that that I am, lo ! 
PelruB. A ! gret is youre lowneese, Powle, brother evermo ! 
Paulta. The keyes of hevene, Peter, God hath you betake, 

And also ye hen poler of Hth and pryiice of us alle ; 



THE ASSUMPTION OF THE VIRGIN. 



391 



It is most eittyng to you this preyere to malce. 

And I unworthy wyth yow prey en here schalle. 
PetriM. I take this upon me, Poule, for youre sake. 

Now, almythty God, that sittiste above cherubyn hftlle ; 
In synge of thyn holy cros oure handis we make, 

Besekyng thy mercy may upon us falle, 
And why we ben thus met, yif it lybe, us lare. 
Johannes. A ! holy brether, alle welcom ye are : 
Why ye be met here I achal you declare ; 

Sot Mary, Goddys moder, by message is sent. 
That from this wreechid world to blysse sche achal fare. 

And at here deying sche desyrjrth to have ub present. 
Petrus. A ! brotiier John, we may syhyn and care, 

Xif it displese not God for these tydyngis ment, 
Paabtg. fforsothe so we may, Peter, hevyin evermore. 

That oure moder and ouro comfort schuld ben us abeenL 
But nevertheles the wyl of God fuIfylUd mot he. 
Johannes, That is wel seyd, Poule, but herof bewar ye, 

'Tliat noil of yoM for hero deth schewe hevy speche, 
Sbr anon to the Jewys it Bchuld than notyd be, 

That we were ferd of deth, and that is ageyn that we teche ; 
flbr we seyn alle tho belevyn in the hoi Trynyt^, 

They schnl ever leve and nouth deye, this truly we preche ; 
And yif we make hevynesse for here, than wyl it seyd be, 

Lo 1 youe prechouris to deye they fere hem ful meche ; 
And therfore in God now beth glad everychon .' 
Petrus. We schal don as ye scy us, holy brother Jolin : 

Now we beseke you, let us se oure moder Marie. 
Johannex. Now, in Goddys name, to here than alie let u 

Sche wyl ben ful glad to se this holy companye. 
Pelrm. Heyl ! moder and maydyn, so was never non, 

But only the most blissid treulye. 
Paidui. Heyl ! incoinparabil quen Goddis holy tron ! 

Of you spreng salvacyon and alle oure glorye ; 
Heyl mene for mankynde and raendere of niys ! 




S9S 



COVBNi'KY MVSTERIES. 



Maria. A ! wyth alle myn hoi herte, brether, ye are welcom 
i-wye: 

I beseke you now to telle me of youre Bodeyoe metyng. 
Petrua. la dyveris contreys we prechid of youre sone and his 
blis, 

Diveris clowdye eche of us was sodeynely curyng ; 
And in on were brouth before youre yate here i-wys, 

The cause why no man cowde telle of oure comyng. 
Maria. Now I thanke God of his mercy, an hy merakle ia this ; 

Now I wyl telle yow the cause of my sonys werkyog ; 
I desyrid his bodily presence to se. 
Johannes. No wonder, Lady, thow so dede ye. 
Maria. The ray sone Jhesti of his hye peti 

Sent to me an aungyl, and thus he sayd, 
That the tliredde nyth I Echuld assende to my sone in deit^; 

Thanne to have youre presence, brether, hertly I prayed, 
Aud thus at my request God hath you sent me. 
Petrut. Wys gracyous Lady, we are ryth wel payed. 
Maria. Blissid brethere, I beseke you than tent me; 

Now wyl I rest me in this bed that for aie is rayed; 
Wachith me besily wyth youre launipya and lithtis. 
Paulus. We schal. Lady, redy alle tliyng for you dith is. 
Maria. Now, sone, schul ye se what Godis myth is. 

My flech gynnyth feble be nature. 

Hie eril decenter omalas in leclo. 

Peirus. Brether, eehe of you a candele takyth nowe rithis. 

And lith hem in haste, whil oure moder doth dure. 
And bisyli let ua wachya in this virgyne sytliis. 

That when oure Lord comyth in his sponsed pure, 
}Ie may fynde us wakyng and redy wyth ouro lithis, 

ffor we knowe not the hour of his comyng now sure. 
And yn ck-nnesse alle loke ye be redy. 
Maria. A ! swete sone Jhetiu, now mercy I cry, 

Over alle synful tliy mercy let sprede ! 



THE JUBITMPTION OP TBB VIRGIN. 993 

Hie dUsatdet Dominus eum omni crltste mrw, €l tHetty 
Domhaa. Tiie vcys of my moder me nyhith ful ny ; 
1 am djEseuJ od to here of whom I dede sede. 

Hie cantabunt org. 

Maria. A I welcom, gracyoos Lord Jhesu, sone and God of 
mercy ! 
An auDgyl wold a BsafPysed me, faye kyr^, at this nede. 
Dominus. In propire persone, moder, I wyl ben here redy, 
Wyth the hefnety quer yowre dirige to rede, 
Veni tu, electa mea, et ponam in te thronnm meum. 
Quia concupivit rex speciem tuam. 
Maria. Paratuin cor meum, Deus, paratutn cor meom, 
Cantabo, et psalmum dicam Domino. 
JposioH. Hsec est quse nescivit thorum in delictis, 
Habebit requiem in respectu animarum sanctarum. 
Maria. Beatam me dicent omnes geoerutionee ; 
Quia fecit michi magna qui potens est, et sanctum nomen ejus. 
Dominus. Veni de Libano, sponsa mea, veni, coronaberis : 
Ecce, venio, quia in capite libri striptum est de me. 
Ut facerem voluntatem tuam, Deus meus, 
Quia exultavit spes mens in Deo salutari mee. 

ffic exiet anima Maria de corpore in sinu Dei. 

Dominua. Now come, my swete soule, in clennesee most pure. 

And reste in my bosom brithtest of ble. 
AUe ye myo apostelis of this body takytti cure: 

In the vall^ of Josephat there fynde schul ye, 
A grave new mad for Maryea sepulture, 

There beryeth the body withe alle youre solempmt^, 
And bydyth me there stylle thre dayes si 

And I schal pere ageyn to yow to comfort your advercyti ; 
Wytli this swete soule now from you I assende. 
Pelrua. In oure tribulacyons, Lord, thou us defeude ! 

We have do comfort on erthe but of the aloo. 




391 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

O ! swete Eoule of Mary, prey thy sone us defende. 

Have mynde of thy pore brether wheo tbou comyst to thi 

tron ! 
Chorus Mar/. Quse est ista qiiffi assendit de deserto, 
Deliciis aifluens injuiisa super dilectum suum? 
Ordo Angeltu. Ista est speciosa inter filias Jlierusalem sicut 

vidistis earn, 
PleoaiQ cantata etdilectioDe deque in cDeluRi gandeus suscipitur, 
Et a dextris £lti in trooo gloriK collocatur. 

Hie cantahit omiiis celestis curia. 

Prima virgo. Now, suster, I beseke you let us do oure atten- 
daunce. 

And wasche this glorious body that here in oare sitli j^. 
As is the use among us wythoutyn ony varyaunce : 

Now blessid be this persone that bar God of mythtis. 
Secunda virgo. I am redy, suster, wyth alle myn hoi affyaunce. 

To wesche and worschepe this body that so brith is ; 
Alle creaturys therto owyn dew obeschaunce, 

ffor this body resseyvid the lioly gostis flithtis. 

Et osculabunt corpus Maria. 

Johannes. Now, holy brother Peler, I herlely you pray 

To bere this holy palnie before this gloryous body, 
ifor ye ben Prince of Apostelis and hed of oure fay, 

Therfore it serayUi you best to ilo this ofEs treiily. 
Petru3. Sere, and ye slept on Criotis brest seyng alle celestly. 

Ye are Goddis clone mayde wythoutyn any nay ; 
This observaunce is most like you to do dewly, 

Wherfore tak it upon you, brother, we pray j 
And I schal helpe for to bere the bere. 
Paulas. And I, Peter, wyth oure brether in fere. 

This blessid body schal helpe to the ground ; 
This holy cors now take we up here, 

Seyng oure observaunce wyth devouth sound. 



THE ASSnCPnON OF THB TIBOIN. 995 



Hie partmbmU eorpm remu sepulimram^ cmm emm m hmmi^ 
ntbrns. 

Pttnu. Bsiit Israel deE^plOydomiisJaeobdepopiifelMifauo! 

AUdujah! 
JfoML Facta est Jodea sanctificatio ejus, Israd potatasejus ! 



Hie angeli dulciier canialmnt in cttlo '^ alldrnfah /*' 



Episcqpus. HeriLe, sere princys, what noyse is aUe this? 

The erthe and the eyer is ful of melodye ; 
I herde never er sweche a noyse now i-wys : 

Con ye ouUi say what they signefye? 
Primus Prineeps. I not be my God that of myht meche is; 

Whatsumever they he hougely they crye : 
I am aferd there wylle he somthyng amys. 

It is good prevely among us we spjre 
Wythowte. 
Seeundus Princeps. Now T have levyd this ihre skore jrer. 
But sweche another noyse herd I never er ; 
Myn herte gjrnnyth ogyl and quake for fer. 

There is sum newe sorwe sprongyn I dowte. 
Tertius Princqpa. Ya that there is, sothly, I say yow. 

The prophetis moder Mary is ded ; 
The disciplis here beryn in gret aray now, 

And makyn alle this merthe in spyth of oure hed. ^ 
Episcqpus. ffy on you, lousy doggys, they were better nay ; 

Outh, harrow ! the devyl is in myn hed. 
Ye dodemusyd prynces faste yow aray, 

Or I make avow to Mahound youre bodyes schul blede. 
Now that quene is ded^ 
The coward knytis in plate. 
And the tormentours thryfe schul ye late, 
ffaste, harlotys, go youre gate, 

And brynge me that bychyd body, I red. 



COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 



I 



K 



396 

Primus Princepa. Dowte you not, sere byschop, in pcyoe of 

rep re f, 
Ded schal don schame to that body to tho prechoure. 
Secundus Princeps. Sere, I schal geyne tho glaberia orgramly 
hem gref, 
Tlio teynt tretouris schnl tene yif my loke on hem louris. 
Tertius Princeps. To hurle wyth the harlotys me is ful lef, 

I schal soarle tho sneveleris wyth ritli scharp Bcbouris. 
Epiacopus. Hens than, a develys name I and take me that thef, 
Aiid bringe me that bygyd body evyn to-fore thes touris, 
And here clisciplis ye slo. 
Hye you hena, iiarlotis, at onys. 
The devyl, boyes, mot breke youre bonys. 
Go stent me yone body wyth youre stonys : 

Outh, harrow ! al wod now I go ,' 

Hie discendttnl Principes cum sttis minisiris, tU /erocipe- 
cucienter petras cum eorum capiti/ms. 

Secundus Princeps. What, devyl, where is tliis men^ P 

I here here noyse but I se ryth noutli j 
Alias ! I hare dene lost my post^, 

I am ful wo, mad is my thowth. 
Tertius Princeps. I am so ferd I woald fayn fle. 

The devyl hym spede liedyr me brouth j 
I renne, I rappe, so wo is me, 

Wynd and wod wo hath me wrouth ! 

To deye I ne routh. 

Primus Princeps. A ! cowardis, upon you now fy. 

Are ye ferd of a ded body ? 

1 schal sterte therto manly, 

Alle that company fere I ryth nouth. 

Hie saltat insanus ai^eretram Marix el pendet per maitus. 

Alias ! my body is ful of peyne, 
1 fastened sore to this here, 



THE ASSUMPTION OF THE VIRQIN« S97 

Myn handys are «er bothe tweyne. 

O I Peter, now prey thi God for me here : 
In Cajrfas halle when thou were seyne. 

And of the, Peter, a mayde acusid there, 
I halpe the tho ; now helpe me ageyne ; 
That I were hoi outh of this fere, 
Sam medycyne me lere. 
Petrus. I may not tend to the, sere, at this hour, 
fibr ocupacyon of this body of honour ; 
But nevertheles beleve in Jhesu Criste oure Saveyour, 

And that this was his moder Uiat we here 
on here. 
Primtts PrincqM. I beleve in Jhesu, mannys salvacyon. 
Petrua, In Goddis name go doun than, and' this body 

honure. 
Primus Princeps, Now mercy, God, and gromercy of 
this savacyon \ 
In Jhesu and his moder to beleve ever I senere. 
Petms. Than take youe holy palme, and go to thi nacyon. 

And bid hem beleve in God, yif they wyl be pure ; 
And towche hem ther wjrth, both hed, hand, and &cyon. 
And of her sekenesse they schal have cure ; 
And ellis in here peynys indure. 
Primus Princeps. Gromercy, holy fader Peter, 
I schal do as the me teche her, 
Thankyng God ever in my speche her, 

Wyth hye repentaunce and herte most mure. 

Hie portabtmt feretrum ad locum sepulture. 

Petrus. Now, holy brether, this body let us take. 

And, wyth alle theworschepewe may,leyitin the grave, 

Kyssyng it alle at onys for here sonys sake : 

Now insence ye, and we schal put here in this cave. 

Hie ponent corpus in sepulcrum, insensantes et can- 
tantes. 



898 COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

Johannes. De terra plasmasti me et carne induisti me, 
Redemptor meus, Domine, resuscita me in novissimo die ! 
Now Grod blysse this body and we oure synge make. 

Hie unanimiter benedicent corpus " In nomine Patris 
et Filii et SpiritHs Sancti." 

The fruth that it bar oure soules schal save. 
Now rest we us, brother, upon this pleyn lake, 
Tyl from oure God and oure lord tydyngis we have. 
Here must we belave. 
Paulua. So muste we, John, as ye say ; 
Thanne byde we here and pray, 
BesAyng hym of comfort that best may, 

Bestyng here abowtyn this grave. 

Hie vadit Princeps ad Judceos cum palma. 

Primus Princeps, Ye Jewys that langour in this gret 
infyrmyt^, 
Belevyth in Crist Jhesu, and ye schal have helthe, 
Throw vertu of this holy palme that com fro the Triny t^, 
Yowr sekenesse schal aswage and restore you to welthe. 
Seeundus Princeps. I beleve in Crist Jhesu, Goddis sone 
in unytiS, 
And forsake my maumentryes fals in here felthe. 

Hie tangat credentes cum palma, et sanati sunt. 

A ! I thanke the, gracyous Lord, and thy moder of pet^, 
Now are we hoi of oure seknesse and of oure foule 
belthe ! 
Terdus princeps. What, harlotys, forsake oure lawe? 
Seeundus Princeps. So hald I best the do. 
Tercius PrincqM. Hens fro me in the develis name 

ye go I 
I deye, outh, outh, harro ! 
The wylde develys mot me to drawe ! 



THB ASSUMPTION OF THE VIRGIN. 899 

Primus Demon. Herke, Belsabub and Belyal, sere Sathan 
in the heme, 
Us fettyn oure servauntis to this presone, 
Blow flamys of fer to make hem to brenne, 

Mak redy ageyn we com to tliis demon. » 

Secundus Demon. ffeiBte for tho harlotis now let us renne, 

To cast hem in this pet here that depe is adon, 
They schul brenne and boyle and chille in oure deone ^ 
Gowe now, a dewelys name, as fast as we mone ! 
Harrow \ harrow ! we com to town. 
PrimHS demon. Drag we these harlotis in hye. 
Into the pet of hdle for to lye. 
Semmdus demon. Gowe now, helle hoondis, ye ciye. 
Sere Sathan may heryn oure sone. 

Domintu. Now, aungyl and alle this court celestyalle. 

Into herthe now discendith with me. 
To reyse the body of my moder terestyalle. 

And bryng we it to the blysse of my dey t 
Assent ye here to now the unyt^ ? 
Angelu Ya, for yowre hye mercy. Lord, al hefne makyth 
melody. 

Hie discendit et venit ad apostolos, dieens, 

Dominus. Pes be to yow alle^ my postelis so dere ! 

Lo ! me here, yowre Lord, and youre God now rythtis. 
Petrus. A ! welcom, Criste, oure comfort, in thy manhed clere ! 

Gret merveylous God, mekyl now thy myth is ! 
Dominus. What worschepe and grace semyth you now here. 

That I do to this body, Mary that hythtis ? 
Johannes. Lord, as thou rese from deth and requyst in thyn 
empere, 

So reyse thou this body to thy blysse that lyth is. 
Us semyth this ryth is. 
Mychael. Ya, gloryous God, lo ! the sowle here prest, now. 
To this blissid body iikyth you to fest, now. 



400 COVENTRT MYSTERIES. 

Hefne and erthe wold thynke this the best, now, 

In as myche as sche bare you, God, in youre myihtis. 

Hie vadit anima in corpus Marias. 

Dominus. Qo thanne, blyssid soule, to that body ageyn : 

Arys now, my dowe, my nehebour, and my swete frende. 
Tabernacle of joye, vessel of lyf, hefnely temple, to reyn, 

Ye sehal have Uie blysse wy th me moder that hath non ende ; 
ffor as ye were clene in erthe of alle synnys greyn. 

So scbal ye reyne in hefne clennest in mend* 
Maria. A I endles^worchepe be to you, Jhesu, relesere of pejrn ! 

I and alle erthe may blisse the, com of owre kend : 
Lo I me redy with you for to wend. 
Dominus. Aboven hefnys, moder, assende than we. 
In endles blysse for to be. 
Michad. Hefne and erthe now injoye may ye, 

ffor God throw Mary is mad mannys frend. 

Et hie assendent in coelum cantantibus organis, Assumpta 
es Maria in coelum i 



Dominus. Yow to worchepe, moder, it likyth the hoi Trinjrt^, 

Wherfore I crowne you here in this kyndam of glorye : 

Of alle my chosyn thus schul ye clepyd be, 

Qwen of Hefne and Moder of Mercy ! 

Michael Now blissid be youre namys we cry ! 

ffor this holy assumpcyon alle hefne makyth melody. 

Deo gracias. 



XLII. DOOMSDAY. 



incipii dies Judicii^ et Jhem descendente cum 
Michade et Gabriele Archangel eUs Miehaelus dicet^ etc. 

Michael. Surgite ! alle men aryse, 

Venite ad judicium ! 
flEbr now is sett the hy3 justyce^ 

And hath assygnyd the day of dome. 
Rape }0W redyly to this grett assyse, 

Bothe grett and smalle, alle an sum. 
And of }our answere 30W now avyse^ 

What }e xal sey whan that 3e cum, 
30wre ansuere ffor to telle ; 
ffor whan that God xal 30W appose, 
Ther is non helpe of no glose, 
The trewthe fful trewlye he wyl tose. 

And send 30W to hevyn or helle. 

Gainryelte. Bothe Pope, prynce, and prysste with crowne, 

Kynge and caysere, and knyhtes kene, 
Rapely 36 renne 30ur resonys to rowne, 

ffor this xal be the day of tene. 
Nowther pore ne ryche of grett renowne, 

Ne alle the develys in helle that bene 
ffrom this day 30W hyde not mowne, 
ffor alle 30ur dedys here xal be sene 
Opynly in syght. 
Who that is fowndyn in deedly gylte, 
He were bettyr to ben hylte, 
In endeles helle he xal be spylte. 

His dedys his deth xal dyght. 

D D 



402 COVENTRY MY8TEBIES. 

Otnnei resttrgefUes subtus terram clamavit ^^Ha! 
at at hat a! at hat at at " Deinde mrgetUes dicat^ 
''hat at at'' etc. 

Ha ! a ! a ! cleve asundyr 30 clowdys of clay, 

Asundyr }e breke and lete us pas : 
Now may oure songe be, wele away. 
That evyr we synnyd in dedly trespas ! 

Omnes demones clamant. 

Harrow and owt 1 what xal we say ? 

Harraw we crye, owt and alasi ! 
Alas ! harrow ! is this that day. 

To endles peyne. that us must pas ? 

Alas ! barrow and owt ! we erye. 

Omnes aninue resurgentes dicanty etc* 

A 1 mercy, Lorde ! ffor oure mysdede, 
And lett thi mercy sprynge and sprede^ ! 
But, alas ! we byden in drede, 

It is to late to aske mercye. 

Deui. Venite benedicti. 

My bretheryn alle, 
Patris mei 

}e childeryn dere ; 
Come hedyr to me to myn hy3 halle, 

Alle tho myn ksuterys and servauntes be ; 
Alle tho ffowle wyrmys ffrom }ow fiedle. 

With my ryght hand I blysse }0W here. 
My blyssynge bumyschith 30W as bryght as beralle^ 
As crystalle clene it clensyth 30W clere, 
Alle ffylth ffrom 30W ffade. 
Petyr, to hevyn 3atys thou wende and goo. 
The lokkys thou losyn and hem undo. 
My blyssyd childeryn thou brynge me to, 
Here hertys for to glade. 



DOOMSDAT. 406 

Petnu. The }a^ of hevyn I opyn this tyde : 

Now welcome, dere bretheryn, to he?yn i-wys; 
Com on, and sytt on Groddys rjght syde. 

Where myrthe and melody nevyr may mys. 
OnmtM Sakmii. On hne we crepe, we gon, we glyde. 

To worchepp oure Lorde that mercyfiil k ; 
£R»r thorwe his woundys that be so wyde. 
He hath brought us to his blys. 

Holy Lorde, we wurcheppe the 1 
Deus. Welcome 3e be in hevyn to sitt, 
Welcum, fro me xul je nevyr flitt. 
So sekyr of blys }e xul be 3itt, 

To myrthe and joye welcum ]e bel 
Afdnue dampnamdum. Ha ! ha 1 mercy, mercy, we crye 
and crave, 
A ! mercy, Lorde, for oure mysdede 1 
A ! mercy, mercy, we rubbe ! we rave ! 
A ! help tts, good Lord, in this nede ! 
Dem. How wolde 36, wrecchis, any mengr have? 

Why aske 36 mercy now in tiiis nede? 
What have 3e wrought 30ur sowle to save ? 
To whom have 3e don any mercyfiil dede, 
Mercy for to wynne ? 
Primus diabobta. Mercy ? nay, nay, they xul have wrake, 
And that on here fforetted wyttnes I take, 
ffor ther is wretyn with letteris blake, 

Opynly alle here synne. 
Deu8. To hungry and thrusty that askyd in my name. 

Mete and drynke wolde 30 3eve non ; 
Of nakyd men had 30 no shame, 

3e wold nott vesyte men in no preson ; 
36 had no pet^ on seke nor lame, 

Dede of mercy wold 36 nevyr don ; 
Un herborwed men 36 servyd the same. 

To bery the deed pore man wold je not gon ; 

D d2 



4M COVENTRY MYSTERIES. 

These dedys doth 30W spylle. 
(For jouve l(we was I rent on rode, 
And for 30ur sake I shed my blode : 
Whan I was so mercyfulle and so gode, 

Why have }e wrought ajens my wylle ? 
&cimdu8 Diabolus. I fynde here wretyn in thin ffisrheed. 

Thou were so stowte and sett in pryde. 
Thou woldyst nott 3eve a pore man breed. 

But ffrom thi dore thou woldyst hyro chyde. 
Tertins diabolus. And in thi face here do I rede. 

That if a thryfiby man 00m any tyde, 
ffor thrust thow he xulde be deed, 

Drynk from hym thou woldyst evyr hyde ; 
On covetyse was aUe thy thought. 
Pritnus diabolus. In wratthe thi neybore to bakbyte, 
Them for to hangere was thi delyte^ 
Thou were evyr redy them to endy te ^ 

On the seke man rewyst thou nought. 
Secumdus4iiabolus. Evyr more on envye was alie thi meade. 

Thou woldyst nevyr vesyte no presoner; 
To alle thi neybores tiiou were unkende. 

Thou woldyst nevyr helpe man in daunger. 
TertiuB €tabolu$. The synue of slautbe thi sowle xal sheode^ 

Masse nore mateynes woldyst thou non here. 
To bery the deed, man, thou woldyst not wemde, 

Therfore thou xalt to endlee ffere ; 
To slowthe thou were fill prest. 
PrimuB diabolus. Thou haddyst rejoyse in glotooye. 
In dronkesheppe and in rebawdye, 
Unherborwyd with velonye 

Thou puttyst from here rest. 

Secumdus (Babotus. Sybile Sclutte, thou ssalte sewe, 
Alle 30ur lyff was leceherous lay ; 



DOOMSDAY* 405 

To alle jonr neybores ^e wore a shrewe^ 

Alle >our plesauns was leccherous play^ 
Goddys men ye lovyd but fewe; 

Nakyd men and ffebyl of array 
ye wolde nott socowre with a lytel drewe^ 

Nott with a thred, the sothe to say. 

Whan they askyd in Oodys name. 
Onmes dampnandi. A, mercy. Lord ! mekyl of myght. 
We aske thi mercy and not thi ryght, 
Not after oure dede so us quyth. 

We have sjrnnyd^ we be to blame. 

Deus 



NOTES. 



Page 1, line 6. With pleys ful glad.] In the Promptorhm Par- 
vulorum is given the following curious analysis of the different kinds 
of plays and players : — '* Pley, ludos ; pley, or somyr game, spec- 
taculnm ; pley that beg^nnythe with myrthe and endythe with so- 
FOwe, tragedia ; pley that begynnythe with sorow and endythe with 
myrthe, comedia ; pleyare, lusor ; pleyare that alwey wyl pley, Indi- 
bandas ; pleyar at the bal, pililudios ; pley3mg garment, ludiz ; 
plejryng place, diludiam." — MS. Harl. 221, fol. 129. Chaucer gives 
us the same definition of tragedy in the prologue to The Monkes 
Tale:— 

Tragedie is to sayn a certain storie. 
As olde bookes maken us memorie. 
Of him that stood in gret prosperitee^ 
And is y-fallen out of high degree 
Into miserie, and endeth wretchedly. 

P. 9, 1. 17. Mevelyd.] So in the MS., but probably it ought to 
be mervelyd. 

P. 17, 1. 10. Dele the comma after the word dwere. 

P« 19. The Creation.] Bagford has preserved in MS^ 
HarL &931, v. 13, a printed bill of the latter end of the seventeenth 
century, wherein it is stated that " at Crawley's show at the Golden 
Lion, near St. George's Church, during the time of South work- fair/ 
will be presented the whole story of the old creation of tho world, or 
Paradice Ix>st, yet newly reviv'd, with the addition of Noah's flood." 
See Strutt's Sports and Pastimes, ed. Hone, p. 166. The specimen 
272 in the same volume is still more curious, and shows that the 
performances of mysteries, howbeit in a very different state, were 



408 NOTES. 

continued in England up to a much later period than is asnally 
believed ; — 

'' By Her Majegtie's permission. At Heatly's booth, oyer against 
the Cross Daggers, next to Mr. Miller's booth, daring the time of 
Bartholomew-Fair, will be presented a little opera, called Tke M 
creation of the world, newly reviv'd, with the addition of the glorioos 
battle obtained over the fVench and Spaniards by his Grace the 
Duke of Marlborough. The contents are these : — 

1. The creation of Adam and Eve. 

2. The intreagues of Lucifer in the garden of Eden. 
3.. Adam and Eve driven out of paradice. 

4» Cain going ta plow, Abel driving sheep. 
5.. Cain killeth his brother AbeL 

6. Abraham offering his son Isaac, 

7. Three wise men of the East guided by a star, who worship biflk. 

8. Joseph and Mary flew away by night upon an ass. 

9. King Herod's cruelty ; his men's spears laden with children* 

10. Rich Dives invites his friends, and orders his porter to ke^ 
ihe beggars from his gate. 

11. Poor Lazarus comes a begging at rich Dives's gate, and the 
dogs lick his sorea^ 

12. The good angel and death contend for Lasarus's life. 

13. Bich Dives is taken sick and dieth. He is buried in great 
solemnity. 

14. Rich Dives in hell, and Lazarus in Abraham's bosoni, seen in 
a most glorious object, all in machines descending in a throne, 
guarded with mviltitudes of angels, with the breaking of the doiids, 
discovering the palace of the sun, in double and treble prospects, to 
the admiration of all spectators. Likewise several rich and large 
figures, with dances, jiggs, sarabrands, anticks, and country dances 
between every act : compleated with the merry humours of Sir John 
Spendall and Punchanello, vdth several other things never yet 
exposed. Perform'd by Mat. Heatly. Vivat Regina !" 

In Braithwayte's "Strapado for the Devil/' 8va. Lond. 1615, 
p. 161, there is an allusion to the performance of Mysteries in 
London in ancient times : — 

" Saint Bartlemews, where all the pagents showne. 
And all those acts from Adam unto Noe 
Us'd to be represent." 



NOTES. 409 

' p. 19,1. 1. O.] In MS., 00. 

P. 22, 1. 8. And make the man Adam.] A marginal qote on the 
verso of fol. 74 informs ns that Adam was created on the tenth 
of the calends of April. 

P. 27, L 24. For to hide.] Dr. Marriott, the editor of A Co/- 
lection of English Miracle Plays, Svo. Basel, 1838, quotes a play 
entitled. The TravaUes of the three English Brothers, 4to. Lond. 
1607, to show that an exact representation of the primitive state 
of our forefathers in the g^arden of Eden was exhihited on the 
English stage " as late as the close of the sixteenth century." 
This is an absurd misrepresentation, and has been founded on an 
erroneous interpretation of a passage m the play above- mentioned, 
which is spoken by Kemp, the actor, in a conversation with Bir 
Anthony Sherley. According, however, to one of the stage direc- 
tions in the Chester Mysteries, Adam and Eve stahuni nudi et ncn 
verecundabwUur ; so that, joined with the present passage in the 
Coventry. Mysteries, there is at least some ground for believing that 
such was actually the case at an earlier period.* 

Dr. Marriott's mistake has been already noticed by the Rev. A. 
Dyce, in his interesting introduction to Kemp's Nine Dales Wonder, 
reprinted for the Camden Society, p. xv ; and I take the opportu- 
nity of introducing in this place some particulars relating to Kemp, 
which throw a new light upon his history, more especially in re- 
lation with the above-mentioned play, and proves that the introduc- 
tion of the comic actor, and his interview with Sherley, was strictly 
founded upon fact. The authors of the play, indeed, assert in their 
prologue their intention of 

" Clothing our truth within an argpiment. 
Fitting the stage and your attention ; 
Yet not 80 hid but that she may appeare 
To be herselfe, even truth." 

But dramatic critics have not given much credit to these professions 

* John of Salisbury thas compFains of the indelicacy of acton: — " Qnomm 
adeo error invalait, at a praeclaris domibas non arceantur, etiam illi qni obscenia 
partibos corporis, oculis omnium earn ingemnt torpitadinem, qnam embeacat 
▼idere Tel Cynicus." — De Nugit CuriaUum, lib. i. cap. 8, edit. 1639, f . 34. 



410 



NOTES. 



I 



of honesty. Mr. Dyce even doubts tlie fact of Kemp having made a 
journey on the contiaeat, and conaidcra the notice in TTie Relume 
from Pemasivs of hie " dancing the morrice over the Alpes," to be 
only a " sportive allusion to his journey to Norwich." In his Nine 
Daieg Wonder, however, he announces his intention of setting out 
shortly on a " great journey," and in liia dedication he seems to 
allude to a projected journey to Rome. I have recently discovered 
a pnssBgc in a contemporary diary, which proves that Kemp actually 
met with Sir Anthony Shirley at Rome, and that his " great journey" 
was not a very profitable speculation. It is as follows: — " IGOI, 
Sept. 2. Kemp, mimus quidam, qui peregrination em qiiandam in 
Germaniam et Italiam instituerat, post multos crrores et infortunia 
sua revcrsus : multa refert de Aathonio Sherly equite aurato, quem 
Romae (legatum Persicum agentem) convenerat." — MS. Sloan. 392, 
fol. 401. William Parry, mho was with Shirley in Russia, returned 
to England in the middle of September, 1601, as ne learn from the 
account published by Hackluyt ; and it la therefore very probable 
that Kemp was the first who brought the news of liia proceedings in 
Persia and Russia. An account of Shirley's adventures was pub- 
lished at London in 1GI3, and a very circumstantial relation by Man- 
waring is in MS. Sloan. 1 10, but neither of these contain the slightest 
notice of Kemp's interview with the ambassador. What we have 
given above is, however, qnite sufficient to establish its truth, and 
" the travell to Rome with the return in certain daies," mentioned in 
Ttoyi]ey't SftircA /or Money , 1609, doubtlessly alludes to the same 
circumstance : and would also seem to imply that he had accom- 
plished his homeward journey in a short time. Mr. Rimbault has 
also kindly favoured me with a copy of the following song from an 
old MS. in his posaesaion by Thomas Weelkes, entitled, j^yrea or 
fanlasticke spirtles, which waa printed with some variations in 
1G08: 



I 

I 
I 




" Since Robin Hood, Maid Marian, 
And little John ure gone-a, 

The hobby-horse was quite forgot. 
When Kempe did dance alone-a. 

He did labour after the tabor 

For to dance : tlKn into France 



NOTES. 411 

He tooke paines 

To akip it ; 
In hope of gaines 
He will trip it. 
On the toe. 
Diddle, diddle, doe." 

P. 31, 1. 8. Flammea.] Sic in MS. ]pro Jiammeo. 

P. 37, 1. 8. Showe.] So in MS., but periiaps shave, which would 
complete the rhyme. 

P. 38, 1. 28. Never.] This word is added to the MS. in a more 
recent hand. 

P. 46, 1. 28. This 8ch3rpp for to make.] A marginal note informs 
OB that " Noe achyp was in lenght ccc. cab3rte8, in brede fiyfty, and 
the heythe thretty : the flode 15. above hyest montayne." 

P. 59, 1. 16. Perhaps this line wonld be more properly printed 

thus: — 

" What is your wylle. Lord, fayn wold I wete." 

P. 59, 1. 30. The comaundment of thi Lord God.] It is almost 
unnecessary to remark that this and the foUowing line are quite dis« 
tinct from the stanza, and are intended as a translation of the lAtin 
given above. 

P. 61, 1. 1. Assumens.] Sic in MS. pro assumes, 

P. 61, 1. 19. Sanctificet.] Sic in MS. pro smtctijicetur. 

P. 62, 1. 32. Makaberis.] Sic in MS. pro nuechabaris. 

P. 64, 1. 6. Bos.] Sic in MS. pro bovem, 

P. 65, 1. 13, For to dwelle.] Add a semicolon at the end of 
this line. 

P. 70. The Barrenness of Anna.] This pageant is founded 
on the apochryphal gospel of the Birth of Mary. The same story is 
also found in the Protevangelion of James. 

P. 73, 1. 27. Catando.] Sic in MS. pro cantando, 

P. 75, 1. 10. Offens.] Place a colon after this word. 

P. 79. Mart in the Temple*] This pageant is also founded 
on the apochryphal gospel of the Birth of Mary. 

P. 81, 1. 22. Explexendo.] Sic in MS. pro ampUsendo. 

P. 83, 1. 28. For.] Perhaps /?rtf. 

P. 84, 1. 29. Dele the comma after the word " bretheryn." 



41S NOTEg. 

P. 88» I. 13. In your name Maria.] Lydgate, in MS. Harf«. 
2255, fol. 141, has g^ven three similar acrostics of the name c^ the 
blessed Virgin. 

P. 90, 1.1. AbYsakar.] Sic in MS. pro^^^aitar. This pageant, 
was priyately printed by Mr. Collier, 12mo. Lond. 1836. The arga* 
ment is taken from the apochryphal gospel of the Birth of Mary. 
Lydgate, in the fifth chapter of his Life of the Virgin, introduces the 
chief incidents here employed. 

P. 94, 1. 29. So.] Perhaps yow. 

P. 94, 1. 31 to p. 95, 1. 22. This is added to the MS. in a more 
recent handwriting, 

P. 97, 1. 20. Bpiscopus comyth, thens Joseph.] Owing to this 

line being inserted in the MS. as a stiige direction, and the deficiency 

c^ the metre, it has been arranged erroneously. It should be at 

follows : — 

Episcopus. Comyth thens. 

Ja$eph. Sere, he may evyl go, &c. 

P. 99, 1. 13. Foreschyth ] So in MS. for floreschyth. 

P. 101, 1. 8. Sere, xalle ffiilfiyL] The pronoun / is probably 
omitted before the word xalle. 

P. 105. Thk Salutation and Conception.] Part of the 
argument of this pageant may be found in the apocryphal gospel of 
the Birth of Mary. The incident of the council of the Trinity is 
given in the Speculum Vita Christi, and in Lydgate 's Life of the 
Virgin. 

P. 105, 1. 22. Babys.] Probably balys, 

P. 112, 1. 16. This name Eva is tumyd Ave.] Compare MS. 
Harl. 2255, fol. 140, a poem in praise of the Virgin : 

Heyl sterre of Jacob, glorie of Israelle ! 

Eva transfibrmyd the lettrys wel out sought ; 

Into thy closet whan that Gabryelle 

With this wourd Ave hath the tydynges brought. 

P. 113, L 17. But I aske it zal be do.] The word how has pro- 
bably been omitted after aake, 

P. 114, 1. 31. Bemys.] Mr. Collier. Hist. Dram. Poet. it. 176, 
writes bennys, and considers that the word means benedicites. I con- 
fess I do not see the necessity of such an explanation, for it appears 



NOTES. 418 

umply to signify bemu, tudd there was doabtiessly aome ooatmanoe 
to represent them on the stage. 

P. 117. Joseph's Return.] This pageant is founded upon the 
apochryphal gospel of the Birth of Mary. 

P. 124. The Visit to Elizabeth.] This pageant is founded 
npon the Protevangelion of James. 

P. 130. 1. 12. Leve.] Dele the semicolon alter this word. 

P. 131. The Trial of Joseph and Mary.] This pageant 
is likewise founded npon the narrative in the Protevaagdion of 
James. 

P. 131, 1. 6. AUe the rowte.] The sabseqaent enumeration of 
names was obviously inserted, observes Mr. Collier, " for the sake 
of producing merriment among the spectators." A somewhat simi- 
lar list of names occurs in Cocke Lordles Bote, among which I find 
two, viz., Pers Potter and Phyllvp Fletcher, that are also in this list. 
Hone, Marriott, and CoUier, who have quoted this very singular part 
of these mysteries, place it at the end of the preceding pageant, but 
the reason for the change I have made will be sufficiently obvious on 
perusaL 

P. 131, 1. 25. And loke yerynge wele in your purs.] This is im- 
portant, as showing that money was collected for the performances. 
The author of a very carious sermon against miracle-plays generally, 
in a MS. of the fourteenth century, preserved in the parish library 
of St. Martin's in the Fields, expressly complains of the money that 
was spent in this manner : — " So this myradis pleyinge is verr6 vdt- 
nesse of mennus averice and coveytise byfore, that is maumetrie, as 
seith the apostele, for that that thei sbulden spend3nA upon the nedis 
of ther neyeboris, thei spenden upon the pieyis, and to peyen ther 
rente and ther dette thei wolen grucche, and to spende two so myche 
upon ther pley thei wolen nothinge grucche. Also to gideren men 
togidere to bien the derre ther vetailis, and to stiren men to glotonye, 
and to pride and boost, thei pleyn thes myraclis, and also to ban 
wherof to spenden on these myraclis, and to holde felawschipe of 
glotonye and lecherie in sich dayes of myraclis pleyinge, thei bisien 
hem beforn to more gredily bygilen ther neybors, in byinge and in 
sellyng ; and so this pleyinge of myraclis now on dayes is werr^ wit- 
nesse of hideous coveytise, that is maumetrie." — Reliqwt Antigua, 
vol. ii., p. 54. 



414 NOTEa 

p. Id6» 1. 13. To set a cokewolde on the hyebenche.] This ap- 
pears to be an allusion to the old ballad of The CokwoidesDaunee, or 
uiailar production. King Arthur was represent as giving the first 
place at table, or a seat on the high bench on the da'is, to men of this 

order — 

" Than seyd thei all at a word. 

That cokwoldes schuld begynne the bord. 

And sytt hyest in the halle." 

The (MwoUes Bounce is printed in Von Karajan's Fruhlingsgabe, 
12mo. Vienna, 1839. 

?• 137» L 15. " Fayr chylde, lullay/' sone must she syng.] 
LuUay is a very common burden to the old nursery songs, one of 
the ddest of which is preserved in MS. Harl. 913, and has been 
printed by Ritaon. Sharp has printed the following, which, as be- 
longing to a Coventry pageant, will be appropriately introduced in 
tiiia place :^- 

LuUy, Inlla, thow littell tin6 child ; 

By, by, luUy, lullay, thow littell tyn^ child : 

By, by, luUy, lullay. 
O, sisters too. 
How may we do 

For to preserve this day 
This pore yong^ing. 
For whom we do singe 

By, by, lully, lullay. 

Herod the king. 
In his raging 

Chargith he hath this day 
His men of might. 
In his owne sight. 

All 3ronge children to slay. 

That wo is me. 
Pore child for thee. 

And ever mome and say. 
For thi parting. 
Nether say nor singe 

By, by, lully, lullay. 



NOTES. 41ff 

P. 139* 1. 16. Now, tore.] Thia Um ou^ to be pointed this, 

*' Now, sere, evyl thedom oom to thi enowte I" 

The ignorant transcriber of the MS. has written ** Thedom" M a 
proper name, which is an evident absurdity. 

P. 140, 1. 30. Whylle that it dede snow.] The story of the cbnd 
of snow was very popular in the middle ages, and is often alladed to. 
It is briefly told in Latin verse by Geoffroy de Vinsanf, Nov. Poetr. 
ap. Leyser, Hist. Poet. Med. iEv. pp. 901, 903; and at greater 
length in a French fabliau of the thirteenth century, printed in the 
collection of M^n, torn. iii. p. 215, analysed in Legrand d'Aossy, 
torn. iii. p. 84. It occurs at a later period in the celebrated ooUee- 
tion, entitled Le$ CetU NauveUei NouvHlei (ed. Le Rons de Ltney, 
Paris, 1841, tom. 1. p. 153), and in many other similar works com- 
posed in Italy and France. 

P. 145. The Birth of Christ.I The Piroterangellon of James 
is the authority for this pageant. 

P. 146, L 1. It is clepyd a chery tre.] Thb Cubic of the cherry 
tree is the saliject of a well known Christmas carol, wliidi has bees 
printed by Hone, AmaaU Mf$iene$ Dt$cnbed, p. 90. See also CoU 
lier^s Hist. Dram. Poet. voL iL p. 179* 

P. 153, L 2. UlrersndoO Sic to eodiee MS., sed forte db- 



P. 15B. L 29. This sosge he^rnae.] In old nioiiteres tke 
A ep h e i dE are oAes repr^seuted f^rtog oa }mf;pipfe^ 

P. 168, L 13, to p. 170, L 3K Tim m added t9 tke origmat 
■■BBscri^ in a more reoest hajod. 

P. 192, L 9. Lyk« ae tiK atmne dolli pen tl»e glas.] '^Hefyted 
witibis her as ti»e •onuoabyxke Idturgh tUe ^MJt/* — MS> SkMWu %\^, 
ldL38. 

P. IW, I. ], to p. 200, 1. 30. TbU ic tkdded t<; the mrnvmsng^ m 
a more recent imud. 

F- 199, L 8. Ht] Probably ft. 

F. 199. 1. 24. Yfc.] Probably yoar. 

P. 210, 1.5. I xal the shew^; uiauy a oet^.] It wiB be oiwenred 
that, in the euuineratJi/L of couutriee wliidi follt^we, Irehiud, Scot- 
land, aud Waiel^ are foentioiied, with tht QBuei»ion of J&ogknd, a 
proof. perLapf . that the writer had Uanaforred line aceue of actkin 
into hib uwii countrv. 



416 NOTES. 

P. 217, 1. 9. Indeploydo.] So in MS. for in diploide, a Latinized 
form from the Greek word dmkois, a double robe ; see Glos. 

P. 222, 1. 17. Jhesas.] This is erased in the MS., and the word 
" doctor" substituted in a more recent hand. 

P. 235, 1. 28. Ther he doth lyve in cave.] For lyve read fyne. 
The same expression occurs at p. 227, 1. ult. 

P. 239, 1. 16. Berere of lyth.] i. e., Lucifer. 

P. 242, 1. 7. With syde lokkys.] " Over thin eyn and thin here" 
is here inserted in the MS. 

P. 246, 1. 16. Prose.] So in MS., but perhaps it ought to be 
pro/e. 

P. 262, 1. 17^ With wyld hors lete hym be drawe.] This mode 
of punishment was very common in the middle ages. It is again 
alluded to at p. 290. 

P. 275, 1. 28. Xad.] So in MS., but probably shad, as I do not 
find « for sh in any similar case. 

P. 289, 1. 20. Takyn his scaffalde.] We have an early notice of 
these vehicles in Chaucer, in the Milleres Tale, where he speaks of 
the " joly " clerk Absolon — 

" Somtime to shew his lightnesse and maistrie 
He plaieth Herode on a skaffold hie." 
The parish-clerks, says Tyrwhit, had always a principal share in the 
representation of mysteries. See notes to Canterbury Tales, v. 3384, 
Sharp's Dissertation on the Coventry Mysteries, p. 17, and Reliquiae 
Antiquse, vol. i. p. 322. 

P. 297, 1. 13. Et cantabit gallus.] This was accomplished by 
one of the company, and a proficiency in the imitation was probably 
aimed at and accomplished. Among the accounts published by 
Mr. Sharp is the following entry : — " Paid to Fawston for coc 
croyng, iiij. d." — Dissertation, p. 36. 

P. 313, 1. 4. Whi spekest not me to.] A great deal of this is 
merely paraphrased from the vulgate. Pilate "seide to Jhesu, of 
whenis art thou ? but Jhesus gaf noon answere to him. Pilat seith 
to him, spekist thou not to me, wost thou not that I have power to 
cmcifie thee, and I have power to delivere thee." — John, chap, xix, 
Wickliflfe's version. 

P. 329. The Descent into Hell.] The oldest mystery in 
the English language is founded on this subject, a very popufa 



NOTES* 417 

tkeme, the principal authority for which is the gospel of Ntcodc* 
mils. It is related in Piers Ploughman, ed. Wright, p. 885-993. 

The print of Christ harrowing hell, published by Heame, and the 
unique iUustration which it affords to two passages in Shakespeare, 
are too well known to require a more particular notice. 

P. 338. The Resurrection.] The writer of the sermon 
against mysteries before quoted is very severe on the performance of 
so sacred a subject as the present "In the dayes of ceremonial 
religion/' says Lambarde, " they used at Wytncy to set foorthe yearly 
in manner of a shew or interlude, the Resurrection of our Lord and 
SaTionr Chryste, partly of purpose to draw thyther some concourse 
of people that might spend their money in the townc, but chiefly to 
allure by pleasant spectacle the comon sort to the likinge of Popish 
BMuimetrie ; for the which purpose, and the more lyvely tbearby to 
exhibite to the eye the hole action of the Resurrection, the pnstes 
gamiabed out certein smalle puppets, reprei^ntinge the persons of 
Christe, tiie watchmen, Marie, and others, amongest the wbicb one 
bare the parte of a wakinge watcheman, who, espiinge Christ to arise, 
made a oootinnal noyce, like to the sound that is caused by the 
metmge of two styckes, and was thereof comonly called Juk 
Soadter of Wytney." — DiciiomariMm Am^lue Tapograpkicmm et Hvh 
imricMm. LoimL 1730, p. 4:^9. 

P. SI6, L 11, 12. Harde gatys have I gon. 

And peTEMU iK/fryd many on« 
These lisaes bear a Terr rtmarkabk resemblance to two others in the 
early ititoT ^A ti»e Hairr/vj&z ^A Hel]« recently printed, mad woald 
lead wt to thmk ^hmX ti^ ^tftKvr 'vf th^ f>/T<t^trr plar k»d k»d the 

' H.WC jr%'^* >js«TT irxi. 



yaw* CiiftitL '-->vtn /r ^«*.k.\ffi» « **nn«tt%f««'*n 



418 NOTES. 

pageant is written in a more recent hand, of the time, I ahonld think; 
of Henry VIII. It will be observed that this composition differs con- 
siderably from the other plays. 

P. 402, 1. 1. Clamavit.] The Latinity throaghoat the MS. is 
very bad, bnt I have suffered it generally to remain as a cxiterion of 
the reliance to be placed upon the MS. text. 



CORRECTIONS OF THE MS. AND ERRATA. 

P. 10, 1. 21. After adtdirye add semicolon.— P. 18, 1. 5. For iherin read iker 
m.— P. 35, 1. 22. For deynftd read deynfui.—V, 65, 1. 13. Add a fall stop after 
dwett€.^^P. 68, 1. 27. For thepeof read thq^e of. — P. 75, 1. 10. Add a semicoloD 
ftftar ^aw.— P. 84, L 6. Dele i&iM.— P. 91. 1. 31. For gramU read grawni, — 
P. 96, i. 6. Owr, forte ycwr.— P. 101, 1. 16. For inf ere read infere.-~V, 101, 1. 30- 
For aMenumere read aUe manere, — P. 103, 1. 13. For betieryd reaAbe Mieryd, — 
P. 108, 1. 19. Seyth be, /or/0 sabtyl. — P. 131, 1. 25. For ryngeweU read rynge 
Ufile, — P. 145, 1. 4. For trybutekym read irybute hym. — P. 154, 1. 29. For yot.r- 
^pede read your ipede, — P. 156, 1. 17. For atyne read a eyne, — P. 238, 1. 1. For 
oUewitk read aUe with, P. 256, 1. 16-19. These lines are repeated from p. 252. 
^P. 263, L 8. For behk read beAu,—P. 283, 1. 15. Kb, forte and.— P. 385, L 30. 
After ded add Ji eomouu 



GLOSSARY. 



Hk Arabic numerals refer to the pages of the volume. Words of frequent 
occurrence have a limited number or references, and those which are exceed- 
ingly common have none. Many of the words in this Glossary may be found 
IB CJoaucer and contemporary wnters. 



A* sometimes signifies with, and before 
a verb is sometimes used for to. 

A, sometimes have, as *' a ffavled," 
45, have failed, and in several other 
places. 

A, sometimes a corruption of on or in, 
and occasionally at. 

A, ah I an interjection of very frequent 
occurrence. 

Abyde, stay, remain. 

Accende, 214, animate, Lat 

Acorde, accord, agree. 

Adawe, mde da we. 

Adown, down. 

Adred, afraid. 

Advowtrye, 216, adultery. 

Ageyn, a^in. 

Aglottes, 241. This word is used to 
denote the tags or metal sheathint^s 
of the points which were formerly 
so much in fashion. See Palsgrave's 
Esclarcissement, " agglet of a lace 
or poynt, for." 

Agresyth,331,Agrise, t. e., to shudder, 
or to make to shudder ; so *' agre- 
syth me,'* makes me shudder. See 
also p. 41. 

Agryse, 159, see agresyth. 

Aaens, against. 

Al ve, 145, kiudred. 

Alle-be-dene, 4, bv and by, forthwith. 
See Sir Fred. Madden's Havelok, 
730,2841, and glos. in voc. 

Allether, 14, 230, gen. pi. of all. 

Alleredy, all ready. 

Altheris, 202, of you all 



Althing, 57, every thing. 

Amat, 2d4, dismayed. Chaucer and 
Shakespeare use the verb mate, 
which is doubtlessly the same. See 
The Kuightes Tale, L 957, and se- 
cond part of Henry VI., act iii. 
sc L 

Amonge, at intervals. Answers to the 
Latin word *' mixtim.** 

Amoure, 50, love. 

An, and. 

And, if. 

Anow, enough. 

Anvempnyd, 75, envenom. 

Apayed, 67> pleased, contented. 

Apert, open. 

Apertly, openly. 

Aqwyte, 335, requite. 

Are, 44, hare. 

Aren, vide am. 

Arere, 132, 215, stir up. P. 240, 
raise up. 

Aresyn, arisen. 

Areste, 91, arrest. 

Am, are. 

Arnde, errand, message. 

Arueys, 283, harness. 

Arryn, 316, seize. 

Arwe, arrow. 

Asayn, assay. 

Askuse, 2, excuse. 

Asmatryk, 189, arithmetic This word 
is used by Chaucer and Lydgate, 
and occurs as late as the year 1594 
in John Davis's " Seaman's Se- 
crets," epist. ded. See also Chau- 

£ K S 



cer*8 Cant. Tal. ». 1900. ed Tyr- 
wbitt, and note, where he quulps a 
passage from the L'otttinian ma- 
- -3npl of " Ihe Sevyn Sagei of 



Romer* 



1 wbich tbe samp word 



Asoyie, 38. resolve, Mr. Hunler, in 
the additions to Boucher, points out 
the two meanings of tiiis word from 
Palsgrave, viz., absolve, and re- 
solve. It is here nsed iu tbe latter 

Aspje, 249, espy. 

AMat, 12, cBtaic. 

Asyse, 60, assiie. Hence, judgment ; 
as ill a passage quoted bv Steven- 
son ffom at) Bdinburgb MS. in the 
addilions to Boucher. 

At, that. 

Aten>, 4, intention. 

Atteyd, 350, friglUened. Tbia maj 
be a mistake for " afrejd." I fiud 
the same word, however, in The 
KjiiBorTars,604— 
" He Bturte him up in a breyd. 
In his berle sore atrayjred." 
In wbich place it probably means 
vexed, angered, &s in The Seven 
Sages, I8W, from " tray." Ritaon 
absurdly explains it poison'd, from 
the Saxon aitred. 

Attvin, ill two, asunder. 

Ausrym, 189, algoriniD, arithmetic. 
This is a corruption from the Ara- 
bic, and is often found in works on 
arithmetic after the Boelian system 
of contractions was superseded by 



theea 



e the CI 



OUB etymologies of this word in Rara 
MathematicB, pp. 1, 72, and 94. 

Autecer,S8, ancestor. It here alludes 
to the first parent. This word is 
not yet ob»)lete in the North-Wesl 
Riding of Yorkshire. See Hunter's 
Hallamsbire Glossary. 

Autere, altar. 

Avantorsly, peradvenlure, by chance. 
*■ Awnlerowsly, forte, fortasse, for- 
san, forsilan," Prompt. Part. 

Aved, had. 

Averte, 88, ai erter, turner away, 

Avyse, advice. 

Avyse, to consider. " Avise yow 
vtele," I. f., look well to yourselves." 

AToyd, 131, move away. 

ATOiitrie, ride Advowtrye. 



Avowe, a vow. " Xv6we7"»otu5^ 

Prompt. Pnrv. 
Awey, aivay. 
Au'lere, altar. 
Ay, evpr, aye, always. 

Bad, 164. bold. 

Baflys, 180. 

180, set at bay. 
den's Gios. to Will 
Werwolf. 

Bay le, 292, cnslod y, governtnent. J 
Cam. Tales, v, 7574. * 

Bayn, 173, 178, ready. 

Bole, 30, sorrow, misery. 

Balys, 105, plural of" b 

Balys, 210, bales. 

Buike, 343, a. ridge of land between 
two burrowes, Coigrave. " Baike 
of a Innde erjd, porca," Prompt, 
Parv. See Boucher's Glossary, in 



Be-den 



Bane, bone. 

Bairn, child. 

Barne, 160, 168, 180, 182, &r, 
bairtr. 

Baron, 183, vida bairn. 

Barrany, barren. 

Bat, 12, debate. 

Bath, both. 

Bfttte, 296, stroke. So il may be in- 
terpreted in this place, hut see Ste- 
Tenson's additions to Boucher, In 
voc. bat. " Balle-BtafTe, perticii- 
' " Prompt. Parv. 

:,2,4.7,m, 161, immediately, 
;tively. 

Beetea, 22i beets. " Belys herbe, 
beta," Prompt. Parr. 

Befforti, before. 

Begchis, 384, bitches. 

Behest, promised. " I have beheste,., 
voto uuocupavi," Hormanni Vat 

_ earia, fol. 3. 

r, i8i,_. 

~" here the belle, 
carry the prize; a proverbial ex-l 
pression.wliich occurs also in Cha" 
cer's TroiluB and Creaseide, 199. 

Belle, 18, clock. 

Bemys, beams. 

Beoetlie, 145, begin. 

Benyson, 86, benediction, blessing. 

Bent, subject 

Bent, a bending or declivity. 



ry.io 



GLOSSARY. 



421 



Berde, 300, lady, damsel. A word 
often applied to a young female in 
old Eaglish poetry. By metathesis 
it is brid, and hence the modern 
term '' bride." See Sir F. Madden's 
Glos. to Havelok, in voc. Chaucer, 
however, in the Romaunt of the 
Rose, 1014, uses the word " birde" 
for '^ bride " in its present significa- 
tion. 

Bemlys, 18, tombs. See the last 
edition of Diigdale's Monast. vi. 
1537» where the first portion of these 
mysteries has been inserted. 

Berynt, 316, bear. 

Berys, 352, bears. 

Be-seyn, 249, appear. 

Best, b^st. 

Be-stad, 77, 329, placed, circum- 
stanced. I am not quite certain of 
its meaning in the first of these in- 
stances, but the word *' accom- 
plished*' will suit the context. Vide 
Boucher's Glossary in voc., who re- 
marks that " no precise, constant 
meaning seems ever to have been 
attached to this word." In the 
Prompt. Parv. is the following valu- 
able notice of this word, *' Be- 
stad, or withholdyn yn wele or 
wo." 

Besy, busy. 

Besynes, business. 

Betake, 72, deliver, commit. See 
Boucher's Glossary, in voc. Vide 
be-teche, which appears to be ex- 
actlv the same word, differing only 
in the spelling. 

Bete, 180. 

Bete, bit. 

Be-teche, 70, commit, recommend. To 
commit to the charge or protection 
of another. 

Betyde, 47, happen. 

Bett, better. 

Bewray, 218, betray. 

Bewte, beauty. 

By, sometimes used for " in." 

Byche, bitch. Byche-clowte, 218, 
baggage. It is not easy to gloss 
this old slang. 

Bydvng, 22, dwelling. 

Bylde, 20, make. 

Bylle, 41, book. 

Birthene, burden. 

Bysmare, 140, 21 7> shameless person. 



Generally used an an adjective, as 
by Chaucer in Canterbury Tales. 

Byth, bite. 

Blaberyn, 164, 384, talk idly. " Bla- 
beryn or speke withowte resouu, 
blatero," Prompt. Parv. 

Ble, 20, generally means complexion. 
*' Bryth as ble, shonld probably be 
" bryth of ble," i. «., bright of com- 
plexion . See Kyng of Tars, 1. 368, 
" Heo that was so bryht of ble." 

Blenke, blink, a wink of the eye in 
derision. 

Blere, 98, dim. 

Blyff, 13, mde be-lyff. 

Blyn, 338, cease. 

Blythe, 24, 167, gay. 

Blome, 65, bloom, blossom. 

Blosme, blossom. 

Blosme, to blossom. 

Bobbyd, 332, struck. 

Boyst, 356, box. Fr. 

Bonden, bound. 

Bondmen, husbandmen. 

Bone, boon, prayer, request. 

Bone, 28, order. 

Boot, 30, vide Bote. 

Boot, 29, bit. 

Borys, 319, boars. 

Borwe, borrow. 

Bot, but. 

Bote, 4, 162, salvation, safety, help. 

Boure, bower, chamber. 

Bord, table, board. 

Bow, bou^h. 

Bowne, 264, ready. 

Brayde, 231, sUrt. "Within a 
brayde," is a proverbial expression 
for rapidity, and occurs in Chaucer's 
Romaunt of the Rose, v. 1336. See 
also above in the note on the word 
'' atreyd." 

Brake, la, fern. " Filix, feme or bre- 
kans," OrtusVocabulorum. " Brake 
berbe or feme, filix," Prompt. Parv. 

Brast, burst. 

Bredys, 270, breads. 

Brepinders, brigandiers. 

Breke, break. 

Brennyng, burning. 

Brent, burnt. 

Brere, 355, briar. "Bowndyn in 
brere" alludes of course to the crown 
of thorns. 

Brethellys, 308, wretches, worthless 
people of either sex. 



4SS OLOSSAKY. ^^M 


Btybour, 183. beggar. 


sc. I, and frequently in an aHegork* ^^| 


Brydde, bird. 


cal sense. ^H 


Brynnys, 162, slreams. 


Cbevesauns, 242, provision. Explain'^H 


Bryst. breast. 


BroQde, 52, braud. 


by the word " provtdeutia," i. e^»^^H 


Brolhel, 217, vide brethellys. 


■Indium. ^^H 


Buike, 158. go. 


Chevetyn, chieftain. ^^H 


But, withoul. " By " and " with " 


Chyae, 180. choice. ^H 




ClaryBeth, 103, lighteneth. ^^1 


posilloD. 


Clenrhe, 385, cling together. ^^M 


Bill, except, unless. 

Biixum, 22, 52, obcdienl, courteous. 


Clepyd, 113, called. ^H 


Clergye, 193, erudition. ^H 




Clyoe. 1 14, incline. ^H 


Cadace, 24], Cadiz. 


Cl»wdys,402, clods. ^H 


Cadeos, 189, cadence. 


Clot^'tc, 98, 139, knock. ^H 


Cdisar, vide Kayser. 


Clonle, 218, a term of reproach, ctA^H 


Calabere,242.clQlb of Calabria. 


Byche. ^H 


Calde, called. 






Comperyctou, comparisoDi ^^^^^^| 


Spelmaniii Glossariiim, ].p. 88, 97. 
In the time of Edward III. tliey made 


Cunrej'te, 70. conoeptinn. '^^H 


Conseyl, counsel. ^^H 


the cburch vestments of this mate- 


Conserve, 70, preserve. ^^H 


rial. 


Contrye, country. ^^^H 


Careyn, 49, carrion. 


Cordewan, 241, Cordovan, a SpaniA^H 


Carys. 218, cares. 


leather, so called from Corduba.^H 


Carnalle, 194, earthly. 


" His abooo of Cordcwane." Sirs ^H 


Carpyoge, 166, talking, speech, nar- 


Thopas. Shoesniadeoftliis leather ^^H 

were articles of luxury. ^^H 

Cors, 3A corpse. ^H 


Casl, 129, plan. 


Caton, 189, the Dislicha Catonis, a 


Cost, coast, region. ^^H 


book greatly read in the middle 


Coslyoiis, 241, costly. ^^M 


agea. 


Cote, 96. cot, cottage. ^^^M 


Cessacion, 107. ceasing. 


Couiityrfe. 241, contrive. ^^H 


Cetecejn, cirizen. 


Coverte, 140, covering. _^^^H 


ChalTare, 266, barter, generally used 


Covnawnt, 299, covenant, ^^^^^^^H 


a «ubstaQlive, meaning " merchan- 


Coffdel, 139, candle. ^^^^^^M 


dize." 


Connce, 313, couatcl. ^^^^^^^H 


Clwlys, 27S, chalice. 


Con'lhe, 103, kind. ^^^^^M 


Chare, 325, 359, frishten, Mcare. 


Craflys, 180. ^^^^^H 


Clurle, 139, churl, slave, villain. 


Cren^etn, 241, crimson. ^^^^^^H 


Chase, 23, enchase 


Crem-lys. 270. 283, cressets. « Cr^^H 


Chawmere, 115, chamber. 


cihnlum, a tanlerne or a ere*M4(''^^^H 


Chavvlboiie,37,i:heekbone. Prompt. 


MS. Harl. lOOU. An open kiip.'^H 




eshibited on a beacon, carried iip»^ ^^" 


Cheke. 30G, check. 




Chpselys, 56, gravel, sand. Wjck- 


" Falor, a cressit lighl (siwli us ibejF 
use in play-houses) made of ropot 


liffe UBCs the word " gravel" for 


^ " land," in Gen. XX. "Chyaelor 




■. gravel," Prompt, Parv. 




■ Cheve.l60,s>Jcceed. 


^^M 


■ Cbeverellc,241, kid leather, leather 


Crofte, 36, yard. ^H 


■ made oS Roat's skin. '• Cheverell le- 


Crook. 209, vide Kyng AlysauntM^H 


^H ther,cheverotin," Palsgrave. "Cuir 


I^H 


^H chevreul," Colgrave. " CheTerellc 


Cnnnyng, 2, knonledi;e. J^^^l 


H Mtlare," PrompL Parv. Used by 


Curyug, covering. " Curyne or lOf^^^H 


^^ Shakespeare, l-Helfth Nighl, act ii>. 


i • ^ 



GLOSSARY. 



488 



Cuniyd, aocursed. 
Curteysy 161, courteous. 
Cus, 88, kiss. 

Dalyawnce, 135, 369. 

Damisele, danuiel. 

Dawe,291,294,down« 

Da we, 298, dawn. 

Dawucvn, 319, daDce. 

Dede, dead. 

Defawth, fault 

Defendyd, 322, offeuded. 

Delacion, delay. 

Dele, part. 

Deliberacion, 130, coDsideration. 
" Good deliberacion " here meaus 
'' kind consideratioD." 

Delye, 32, dig. 

DeWyng, 32, digging- 

Delyre, 204, delay. 

Delyte, delight. 

Dem, 250, condemn. 

Demyd, 2d, judged, coodemned. 

Dempt, damned. 

Dene, den. 

Dentys, blows, strokes. 

Dere, dear. 

Dere, 61, 63, injure. 

Denrere, dearer. 

Dette, due. 

Deve, 166, deafen. 

Develys, devils. 

Deyyd, 348, deafened. 

Deyys, device. 

Devoyde, 243, absent. 

Dew, due. 

Dyght, 94, prepared. 

Dymysellys, 100, damsels. 

Dyng, 31, strike down. 

Dyngne, 164, worthy. 

Dyntys, blows, strokes. 

Diplois, 217. See notes, p. 414. " Ly- 
nynge of clothe, deploys-dys, " 
Prompt. Parv. " Surtout double," 
Grail. Vide Ducange, in voc. 

Dyrthe, 186, dearth. 

Dyscres, decrease. 

Dyscryve, 190, descry. 

Dispite, 2, contempt. 

Dysprave, 285, 350, disprove. 

Dysspice, despise. 

Dysteyn, 61, 215, disdain. 

Dyswary,383, doubt. 

Dyth, 18, prepare, make ready. 

Do, don. The various uses of this 
verb in English and Scotch, in an 



auxiliary, active, and passive sense, 
have been pointed out by lyrwbitt, 
in his Essay on the Versificatioa of 
Chaucer. See also Sir Fred. Mad- 
den *s Glossaries to Havelok, and 
William and the Werwolf. 

Doctrynal, 189, a popular book of tlie 
middle ages. 

Doyl, 47» dole, sorrow. 

Doifoly, 35, sorrowfully. 

Dolowre, grief. 

Dome, 349, judo^ement 

Domys, 189, judgments, opinions. 
** Dome, judicium," Prompt Pttrv. 

Dompnesse, dumbness. 

Donjoone, 21, dungeon. 

Doungenys, 308> dungeons. 

Douteres, daughters. 

Dowcet, 24, dulcet, sweet 

Dowe, dove. 

Dowse, 90, vide Dowcet 

Dowte, 5, 10, fear. 

Dowtere, daughter. 

Dowty, 163, mighty. 

Dowtynes, 161, mightjmess. 

Dreynt, 43, drown^. 

Drepe, 170, drop. I believe this to 
be the right interpretatioii, although 
it may possibly be a singular in- 
stance of the primitive meaning of 
the verb " drepe," which frequently 
occurs in early English writers, 
meaning '' to kill." If the writer 
of ttiis passage means to say that 
the three kings were drowned in 
oblivion, it would almost realize 
Lye's interpretation of the Saxon 
'' dresse," which he explains by 
'' lethi causa." In Caedmon we read 
*' on gemynd-drepend " applied to 
Noah in his drunkenness. See 
Thorpe's edition, p. 94. 

Dresse, 217» prepare. 

Drewe, 36, 405, love, friendship. 

Drowe, 239, drew. 

Dulfulle, 228, doleful. 

Dwelle, 3, dwell, give attention. So 
in the Sevyn Sa^es, 1, 

" Lordynges that nere likes to dwell, 

Leves yowr speche and heres this 
spell." 

Dwere, doubt. 

Echone, each one. 
Edyfy, 252, 256, edify. 
Efne, 278, heaven. 



424 



GLOSSARY. 



£fie, a^in. 
£>d, 325, heed. 
£)en, eyn, eyne, eyes. 
Eylsum, 93, wholesome, sound. 
£yte, 129, eif2[ht. 
£yted, 83, eighth. 
£yzil, 325, vinegar. 
Empere, 201, emperor. 
Encliesone, vide iiicheson. 
Ende, vide, Hende. 
Enseus, 162, incense. 
Enspyre, inspire. 
Erbys, herbs. 
Erdon, 282, errand. 
Erst, 105, else. 
Ertheleohe, earthly. 
Earthepwaye, 331, earthquake. 
ETerycne, every. 
Everychone, every one. 
Evy, heavy. 
Exys, 270, axes. 

Fad, 24, fed. 

Fader, father. 

Fay, faith, truth. 

Fayer, fair. 

Favn, glad, joyful. 

Faffage, 59, a mistake in the MS. for 
" falsage." 

Fals, falM. 

Fahied, 10, baffled. 

Fame, 139, defame. 

Famyt, 105, famished. 

Fare, 162, go. This word is very com- 
mon in early English. 

Faryu, 89, fare. 

Faryn, 163, gone. 

Fawe, 293, glad. Vide fayn. The 
same form of the word occurs in 
Kyng of Tars, 1058. 

Fawte, fault. 

Fawth, want. 

Fe, 183, money. Tyrwhitt says that 
this word is sometimes used to sig- 
nify inheritable possessions, iu con- 
tradistinction to money or move- 
ables. See Lydgate's Minor Po- 
ems, p. 117- 

Feble, feeble. 

Feetly, 135, fitly, properly. 

Fey, faith. 

Feynnesse, feebleness. 

Feythful, 375, believing. 

Fevthnnesse, 44, feebleness. 

Felachep, fellowship. 

Felawes, fellown, companions. 



Fele, many, often. 

Fele, very. 

Felle, 188, skiu. 

Felle, fierce. 

Felle, 65, overcome. 

Fellere, 159, destroyer. 

Fenauuce, 223, end. 

Feud, fiend. 

Feune, 166, 264, fen. " Fenne, la- 

bina," Prompt. Parv. 
Fer, far. 
Ferd, feared. 
Ferde, 1 17, fared. 
Fere, 91, companion. 
Fere, fire. 
Fere, fear. 
Fere, far. 

Fer for the, 126, henceforth. 
Feryug, fearing. 
Ferly, 17, wonderful. 
Feste, feast. 
Fett, fetch. 
Fygwryth, fi^uretb. 
Fylt, 112, filled. 
Fise, 385. 
Fyth, fight. 
Fytt, 186, a division or part in music. 

See Percy's Reliques, Tyrwhitt's 

Chaucer, gloss, in voc. fit.. Sir F. 

Madden's gloss, to Sir Gawavne, in 

voc , and the old ballad of King 

Estmere. 
Flem, 280, banish. Fide Chaucer's 

Manciples Tale, " and appetit fle- 

meth aiscretion." 
Flyth, eight. 
Flom, river. 
Florens, 1679fiorins, francs. Aneient 

French coins. 
Floure, flower. 
Flowe, 3, flowed. 
Foyson, 66, 89, abundance. 
Folys, fools. 
Folwe, follow. 
Folwyth, followeth. 
Fomen, 56, foes. 
Fon, 12, foes. 
Fond, 25, try. 
Fonge, 41, 243, undertake. 
Fonnyng, 304, temptation. 
Fonnys, 367, foolish. 
Food, 149, offspring. 
Fop, 295, fool. " Foppe, folet, fatuel- 

lus,8tolidus,follus, Prompt. Parv. 
For, notwithstanding. 
Fordere, 240, further. 



GLOSSARY. 



425 



Fordone^ ruined^ destroyed. 

For-fare, 47% perish. 

Forgeten^ forgot. 

Forlorn, 7» utterly lost. 

Former, 169, creator. 

For-tlian, 64, therefore. 

For-tby,120,therefore,on this account. 

Foulyng, 306, wretch. 

Frayth, 15, affrayetb, caused fear to. 

Fre, 3, 8, noble. 

Freke, 30, fellow. This word gene- 
rally occurs in a bad sense. 

Frelnes, 108, frailty. 

Frenchep, frienship. 

Fryth, 264, an inclosed wood. See Sir 
F. Madden*s gloss, to Sir Gawayne, 
in voc. 

Fryhtbis, 167, 183, possessions, as dis- 
tinguished from money. 

Ffo, from. 

Fruyssyon, fruition. 

Fulfyllvd, 125, 127, filled full. 

FuUycbe, fully. 

Gadere, gather. 

Grame, 133, sport. 

Gran, began. 

Grate, 51, way. 

Gat}8, 346, wa;^s. 

Greawunt, 15, giant. 

Gebettys, 290, gibbeU. 

Gendyr, 61, engender. 

Gent, 135, gentle. 

Gerlys, 181, children (of either sex). 

Knave gerlys, male children. 
Grerthe, 186, girth. 
Gesyne, 150, parturition, childbirth. 

'' Gesine, a lying in childbed, a 

lying in," Cotgrave. 
Geste, guest. 
Gett, gotten. 
Gyde, guide. 
Gyldyo, golden. 
Gynne, 44, trap. 
Gynne, begin. 
G) nnyng, beginning. 
Gyse, 1 18, fai^hion. 
Glade, 168, fine. 
Glathe, 171, welcome. 
Glete, 165. 

Glevys, 270, glaives, swords. 
Glose, 9, gloss. • 
Godys, 34, goods. 
Gomys, 384, gums. 
GiODge, 345, little bouse. 



»> 



Grost, Spirit. 

Grovernawns, 135, conduct. 

Growys, 179, vide Golkys. 

Grame, 2, 27j anger. 

Gramercy, 56, thanks. 

Grave, 227, buried. 

Gre, great. 

Grede, 181, cry. 

Grees, 82, 85, steps. '' Siste gra- 
dum, abide thor at grees," Reliquin 
Antique, vol. i. p. 8. 

Greff, grief. 

Gres, grass. 

Gyrlle, 230, angry. 

Grym» 69, cruel. " Grrme, gryl,and 
horrable, horridus," Prompt. Parv. 
*' He loked grymly or angerly," 
Hormanni Vulgaria. 

Gryscysme, 189, an educational book 
of the time. 

Gryse, vide agryse. 

Grythe, 7, peace. Perhaps it ought 
to be spelt gyrthe, wtiich would 
complete the rhyme ; and vet it oc- 
curs similarly in the Townley Mys- 
teries, p. 140. 

Grouyo, 95, groan. 

Groundyd, 1, foundation. 

Grugge, 228, grumble. See " The 
Voiage and Travaile of Sir John 
Maundevile," ed. 1839, p. 57. 
** Grucchyd, murmuratus," Prompt. 
Parv. 

Grw, 179, Greek. 

Gun, 11, began. 

Ha, 163, hedge. 

Halle, 303, all. 

Hals, Ml, neck. 

Halse, 323, embrace. From the Saxoo 
bals, t. e.t the neck, but used gene- 
rally. 

Hal vie, 61, hallow, sanctify. 

Happys, 1H2, fortunes. 

Haras, 147, ^ stud of horses. ** A 
** hous of haras" merely means a 
<' stable." The folbwing definition 
of this word is giveu in a poem of 
the reign of Edward 11., MS. Trin. 
Coll. Cantab. B. 14, 40 :~" Haras 
se)'th man of coltys." 

Hardauot, 15, courageous. 

Harlot, 217. Tliis word is applied to 
either sex. " Scurra, a harlotte," 
Reliquiae AntiquiP, vol. i. p. 7* 



486 



GLOSSARY. 



Harpe^ 181. 

Harwere^ 160, harrower. 

Hastow, hast thou. 

Hat, 13, hast. 

Hatede, hated. 

Hede, hide. 

Hedyr, hither. 

Hefly, 255, heavenly. 

Hefney heaven. 

Heyde, hide. 

Heylyght, 139, aileth. 

Heyn, 237, heaven. 

Heyn, 179. 

Heie, health. 

Helme, helmet. " Gralea, a helme, 
Reliquie AntiquaB, voL i. p. 7. 

Helmes, alms. 

Hem, 30, home. 

Hem, them. 

Hende, 5, 174i fair. 

Hendyng, ending. 

Hendyr, 89, more gentle. 

Hens, hence. 

Hent, 12, 94, taken, take. 

Herborwe> 147, habitation, lodging. 
Used by Chaucer. See Cant. Tales^ 
ed. Tyrwbitt, glos. in voc. 

Herdys, 159, shepherds. 

Here, their. 

Here, 6, hear. 

Here, her. 

Here, 226, ha:r. 

Hest, 17> command. 

Hete, 185, hit. 

Hevy, sorrowful. 

Hevyly, sad. 

Hevyn, heaven. 

Hey, high. 

Hy, hie. 

Hy,high. 

Hy)er,nigher. 

Hyght, 6, be called. 

Hylle, 38, 253, cover, conceal. A 
Somersetshire word. 

Hylte, 401, concealed. 

Hoberd, 179, 325, a satirical term. It 
is used also in the curious old poem 
on the Man in the Moon, printed in 
nn' Introduction to Shakespeare's 
lipids. Night's Dream, p. 54. 

Hoi, 284, whole. 

Hoo, who. 

Hool, whole. 

Host, 282. 

Howe, 99, ought. 

Howyth, 97, ought. 



jHowlott, 179, owl. See Hunter^* 
Hallamshire Glossary^ p. 52» 
Howte, 182, howl. 
Howtyn, 179, hoot. 

I or Y, at the beginning of a word, 
represents the Saxon prepositive 
" ge/' and, when it occurs, is most 
frequently prefixed to the partidi^e 
past. See Sir F. Madden's Gkm. 
to William and the Werwolf. 

I -crake, 342, probably a mistake ib the 
manuscript for '' to crake/* which 
will make better sense. 

I-fowade, 158, 179, found. 

1-knowe, 141, known. 

lubasset, 77* embassy. 

Incheson, 116, cause. ''EnehesoDe 
or cause," Prompt. Parv. 

Indute, 204, clothea, indued (induttts, 
Lat.) 

I-now, 385, enough. 

laportable, 291, unbearable. 

Intille, into. 

I-pres^ 384, pressed. Perhaps this is 
an error in the manuscript for ** wad 
prest." 

I-wys, truly, certainly. The Saxoa 
adjective gewis, used adverbially. 
Sir Frederick Madden " doubts wh!e» 
ther it was not regarded as a pro- 
noun and verb by the writers or the 
fifteenth century." V. Gloss, to Sir 
Grawayne, in voc. 

Jape, jest. Sometimes, as at p. 11^ 
used in an obscene sense. ** Mok- 
kyn, or japyn, or tryfelyn, liidifioo,*' 
Prompt. Parv. 

Jebet, gibbet 

Jematrye, 189, geometry. A curious 
document, which affords a very good 
illustration of geometry in Englaod 
at this period, is printed in Rara 
Mathematica, p. 56-71. 

Jentylle, gentle, of noble birtb^ or 
breeding. 

Jure, Jewry. 

Jurediccyon, 302, jurisdiction. 

Kage, 162, 166, cage, stall. 
Kayser, \S3, emj^ror. 
Keiide, kind. 
Kendoly, 34, natural. 
Kerchere, 54, kerchief. 
Kerchy, 318, kerchief. 



GLOSSARY. 



4S7 



Kydde, 49, known. 

Kyknytes, 180, knights. 

Kynrede, kindred. 

Kyrke, 178> church. 

Kyrtyl, 163, 310. *' Kyrtyl, tunica," 
Prompt. Parv. See Gilford's Jon- 
son, vol. ii. p. 260. 

Kyth, 159, native country. 

Kythe, 180, make known. 

Knad, 384, knife. 

Knaggyd, 384, hanged. 

Knave, 151, servant. 

Knelende, 74, kneeling. 

Knyt, 19, joined. 

Knytes, knights. 

Knop, 245, knob. 

Know, 169, acknowledge. 

Knowlage, 123, acknowledge. 

Kold, 168, slain. 

Kok, cock. 

Kow, 299, cow. 

Krepe, creep. 

Kure, 54, cover. 

Kusse, 78, kiss. 

Kutte, 218, cut. 

Lacche» 29, catch, take. 

Lay, 161, law. 

LaKe, 387> den. 

Langage, language. Hence, 40, dis- 
pute. 

Lappyd, 125, were enfolded. ^' Lap- 
pyn or whappyn in clothys, invol- 
vo; lappyn as howndys, lambo," 
Prompt. Parv. 

Las, 29, lace. 

Lave, 98, washed. 

Leche, physician. 

Ledys, ISS, people. 

Lef, leave. 

Leff, 267, well. 

Leysere, 321, leisurely. 

Lende, 169, tarry. See Sir F. Mad- 
den's Glos. to Sir Gawayne, in voc. 

Lenyalle, lineal. 

Lent, 190, given. 

Lere, learn. 

Lernyst, 103, teachest. 

Les, falsehood. 

Lesyng, lying. 

Lesse, 223, be lessened. 

Lest, 333, list, desire. 

Lestyght, lasteth. 

Lestynff, lasting. 

liete, 25, lose. 

Lett, 121, 369, hinder. 



Lettyng, 5, 33, hindrance. 

Leve, 31,dear. 

Levyn, 156, sky. 

Levyng, living. 

Levyr, 120, rather. 

I-ievys, leaves. 

Lyberary, 88, bible. 

Lycorys, 22, liquorice. 

Lvff, life. 

Lyme, 170, limb. 

Lymyd, 63, ensnared, caught as with 
bird-lime. Chaucer, Cant. Tales, 
6516, uses the word in the same 
manner. 

Lympe, lump. 

Lynage, lineage. 

Lyne, lie. 

Lynyacion, 189, measuring. 

Lyste, 154, listen. 

Lyste, 171> pleasure. 

Lythe, 166, lies. 

Lofflyere, 161, more lovely. 

Lofsumere, 161, more worthy. 

Logge, 29, lodge. 

Ijogyd, 11, lodged. 

Lokyn, 19, 29, &c., locked. 

Lombe, lamb. 

Longe, belong. 

Lore, 37, doctrine. 

Lorn, 55, destroyed. 

Losel, 37, wretch. The word occurs 
as late as the year 1627 in the old 
play of Apollo Shroving, p. 80, and 
once in Shakespeare, Winter's Tale, 
act ii. sc. 3. 

Loth, loath. 

Lothfolest, 75, most loathsome. 

Loveday, 111. A day appointed for 
the amicable arrangement of dif- 
ferences. See Tyrwhitt's Notes to 
Chaucer, v 260. " Loveday, dies 
seouestra," Prompt. Parv. 

Lovely, 1, good people. The latter 
word is understood. 

Lovelyest, 183, most dear, precious. 

Loverd, lord. 

Lowh, 24, smiles. 

Lowly te, 355, loyalty. 

Lowte, 59, 206, bow, bow down. 

Lowth, 137, 166, obey, worship. 

Lullyd, 182, lolled. 

Lullynge, 182, lolling. 

Lurdeyn, 45, clown. Generally used 
as an expression of contempt, as at 
p. 184. 

Lusty, 74, pleasant. 



428 



GLOSSARY. 



Maculacion^ 138, spot, sjtain, Lat. 

Mahownde, Mahomet. Vide Ducange, 
in voc 

Mayn, might, stretifi^th. 

Mavstryes, 211, skill. 

Make, mate, companion. 

Males, 106, evils. 

Manace, 41, danger. 

Manas, 21, vide manace. 

Mansclawth, 312, manslaughter. 

Maryn, 99, marry. 

Marryn, 163, hurt. 

Masangere, messenger. 

Matere, matter. 

Matere, 383, womb. 

Mawnde, 11, 259, Maunday. 

May, maid. 

Mede, 55, 352, merit, reward. 

Medys, 183, rewards, merits. 

Medvl-erth, 30, world. 

Meef, 243, move. 

Mekyl, much. 

Melle, 21, mix, join. 

Mende, mind. 

Mendys, 240, remembrances. 

Meny, 270, company, followers. 
'* Meny of howsholde, familia, " 
Prompt. Parv. This word, says Sir 
F. Madden, is to be found in every 
English writer from the time of 
LayamoQ to Shakespeare. 

Menyht, meaneth. 

Mere, 171» 355, place, boundary. 
" Meer-marke betwene ij. londys, 
meta/* Prompt. Parv. 

Meryer, merrier. 

Merthis, mirths. 

Merveylyd, marvelled. 

Mete, 101, measure. 

Methe, 157» mouth. 

Myre, 169, myrrh. 

Myrkenes, 2^, darkness. " Myrke- 
nesse, or derkenesse, tenebrositas," 
Prompt. Parv. 

Myschevyd, 107» wicked. 

Mysse, 43, wrong. 

Myth, might. 

Mokador, 190, a bib. " Baverette, a 
bib, mocket,or mocketer, to put be- 
fore the bosome of a (slavering) 
child," Cotgrave. 

Molde, earth. 

Mone, moon. 

Moote, 4, contention. 

Morny, 104, mourning. 

Mornyng, mourning. 



Morwjf, morning. 

Mot, must. 

Mot-halle, 298, court, judgement- 
hall. *' Moote halle, praetorium," 
Prompt. Parv. 

Mowe, 325, mouth. 

MuUynge, 160, pretty boy. 

Muste, 382, new wine. See Wick- 
liffe. Acts ii. 13, ap. Collier's Hiitt. 
Dram. Poet. vol. ii. p. 221. 

Nale, 61, ale-house. See Tyrwhitt's 
Gloss, to Cant. Tales, in voc. This 
author supposes " at the nale,'* in 
the few passages in which it is 
found, to be a corruption which has 
arisen from the mispronunciation 
and consequent miswriting of atte 
nale for atten ale. 

Nen:rcmauncye, 189, necromancy. 
This does not exactly imply the 
modem term. ^* He is all sette to 
nygrymancy and conjurynge, add ic- 
tus est mathematicae, Hormanni 
Vulgaria. 

Ney hand, 172, approach, nigh at hand. 

Nempe, 53, name. 

Nescne, 32, tender. 

Nevene, 173, name. 

Ny, nigh. 

Nome, %, taken. 

Norche, 208, nourish. 

Norchych, nourisheth. 

Noth, nought. 

Nowthty, nauehty. 

Nuro, 158, took. See Nome. 

O, one. 

Oblocucyon,70, interruption, Lat. 

Ovn, 14, eyes. 

Olyff, 196, in life, alive. 

On, in, as '* onsondyr," 45, and other 
places. 

Oubokylle,200, unbuckle. 

Ouethvs, 147, &c., scarcely, with dif- 
ficulty. 

Onhangyd, 305, unhanged. 

Ooy, 103, honey. 

Onys, once. 

Onyth,242, in night, at night time. 

Oo, one. 

Or, before. 

Ordenaryes, 87, ordinances. 

Ore, 78, mercy, grace, favour. *' Thyn 
ore," a common expression, signify- 
ing *<with ihy favour." SeeCbau* 



GLOSSARY. 



429 



cer'i Canterbury Tales, ed. Tyr- 

whitt, v. 3724, and notes. 
Ortografyp, 189, ortho^aphy. 
Ostage, 147, hostage, lodging. 
0?er, 385, too. 
Orerest, 307, uppermost. 
0?er-throwylit, 74, overthrows. 
0?yr-lede, 262, over-reach, overbear. 

" Do not the people oppresse, nor 

overlede," Lyogate's translation of 

Boccace, v 104. 
Ovyrscn, oversee. 
Ovyth, 52, behoveth. 
Owe, 28, own. 
Owyn, own. 

Owtrage, 62, outrageous. 
Oyn, eyn, eyes. 

Pace, 14, 120, pass. 

Pad, 164, toad. 

Padde, 185, vide pad. 

Paddok, 164, a large toad. A distinc- 
tion is here drawn between the 
" paddok " and the " pad," the 
meanin? of which is obvious, " Va- 
na, paddoke," Reliquiae Antiquse, 
vol. 1. p. 8. 

Paphawkes, 179, parrots. T give this 
interpretation on the conjecture of 
a gentleman well skilled in the lan- 
guage, but I cannot find any autho- 
rity for it. 

ParayU 246, 269, apparel. 

Par-de, 122, by Grod ! verily. A com- 
mon French oath. 

Paramowre, love. See Reliquite An- 
tiquse, vol. i. p. 27. 

Parfyte, 115, perfect. 

Parochoners, 71> parishioners. 

Partabvl, 275, partaker. 

Pay, 49, pleasure. 

Pawsacion, 89, pause. 

Peyr, pair. 

Peys, 236, weight. 

Pelle, 167, fur. " Wurth pelle " is a 
tautology. 

Pellys, 246, furs. The notice in this 
place of '* pellys after the old gyse" 
is curious. 

Perchyn, 238, pierce. 

Perdure, 254, endure. 

Pere, equal. 

Pere, 131, appear. 

Pertly, 1, openly, promj)tly. 

Pete, pity. 

Pete, 29, 165, query to pitch or throw. 



Peusawns, 261, power. 

Hhasmacion, 191, formation. 

Pyan, 22, " Pyony berbe, pionia," 
Prompt. Parv! " Pionia, pentoro- 
binain, pioyue," MS. Sloan. 2478, 
fol 210. 

Pychyn, 179, pick. 

Pygth, vide Pyth. 

Pylle, 297, rob. "Pyll, or make 
bare," Palsgrave. 

Pillid, 384, bald. So Chaucer, Can- 
terbury Tales, V. 3933, says 

^' As pilled as an ape was bu skull.*' 

Pyne, 151, pain. 

Pynne, 28, pine. 

Pyth, 2, 6, pight, arrayed, fixed. 

Pleand, 70, playing, 

Pleyn, 14, playing. 

Pleyn place, 14, playing place, the- 
atre. •• Pleyyng place, diludium,*' 
Prompt. Parv. 

Pleyn, plain. 

Plesawns, pleasing. 

Plesynge, 73, pleasure. 

Plete, 185, plead. 

Plyth, 2, plight, pledge. 

Popetys, 179, puppets. 

Portature, 34, likeness. 

Possede, 56, possess. 

Pouste, power. 

Prate, talk. 

Pray, 216, prey. 

Prendyd, 185, pricked. 

Prent, 18, 60, imprint. 

Prese, 1, crowd, throng. 

Presotide, 312, confined. 

Prest, 13, ready. 

Pretende, 82, put forward, 

Preyn, 320, pray. 

Prevyn, 179, prove. 

Pryk, sting. 

Prynspal, 377, principal. 

Prise, 41, price, value. 

Promyssyon, promise. 

Prophete, 261, profit. 

Prow, 119, 333, profit 

Prune, 164, cut. 

Punchyth, 75, punish. 

Purpure, purple. 

Purveyd, 123, provided. 

Qwalle, 67, whale. 

Q^ arte, qwerte, 202, 225, 372, good 

spirits, joy. Sometimes, as at p. 

372, used as an adjectivf" 
Qwed, 15, wicked. 



4S0 



GLOSSARV. 



Qwedyr, 122, shiver. 
Qweke, quake. 
Qwelle, 13, destroy. 
Qwelp, 51, wbelp. 
Qwen, 80, queen. 
Qweme, 109, please. 
Qwerte, vide Qwarte. 
Qwetbe, bequeath. 
Qwyffht, 44, reward, pay off. 
Qwyl, while. 
Qwypps, 315, whips. 
Qwyte, 22, white. 
Qwyte, 18, requite. 

Race, 136, break. 

Raftys, 180, rafts. 

Rake, 183, rack (?) This word is here 
dragged in to preserve the allitera- 
tioii, a practice very common with 
the writer of these mysteries. 

Rakyl, 24, rash. 

Rakynge, 180, violent. ** Rasco, ra- 
kny," Ortus Vocabulorum. 

Rape, 179, 231, haste. 

Reast, 124, rest. 

Rebate, 76, abate. 

Rebawdvs, 183, ribalds. 

Recke, 182, care. I ne recke, t. e,, 
I don't care. 

Reclyne, 141, return. 

Recorde, witness. 

Recure, 93, recover, obtain. 

Rede, counsel. 

Redrure, 254 

Regne, 161, kingdom. 

Rejrnenge, reigning. 

Re\me8,241,273. 

Reieves, 89, remnants. 

Rem, 156, realm. 

Rennyn, 16, ran. 

Renogat, 384, renegade. 

Repreff, reproof. 

Resche, 170, rush. 

Restyth, remaineth. 

Reve, 175, bereave. 

Revyfe, revive. 

Re we, 11, row. 

Rewly, 8, rueful. 

Rewlyd, ruled. 

Ryal, 161, royal. 

Ryalte, 161, royalty. 

Ryff, 4, 6, 7, 13, speedily. Vide Ihre, 
and Sir F. Madden 's gloss, to Wil- 
liam and the Werwolf, in voc. 

Rynggyng, 308, noisy. 



Rys, 22, twig, bough. See Lydgate's 
Minor Poems, pp. 105, 269. 

Ryte, right. 

Rytb, right. 

Rytbful, 13, righteous. 

Roberych, 277, rubric. This of course 
refers to the directions given imme- 
diately previously. 

Rochand, 308, ruler. 

Rosche, 32, rush. 

Rote, root. 

Rought, 183, rout. 

Rowel, 179, point of a spur. " Rowel 
of a spere, stimulus," Prompt. Parv. 

Rowncys, 180, steeds. 

Rowte, 40, assembly. 

Rowtb, 177, suffer. 

Ruly, 14, 67, vide Rewly. 

Rustynes, 47, long continuance. 

Sadelys, 353, saddles. 

Sadly, 145, gravely. 

Saff, save. 

Say, 356, saw. 

Saylle, 45, assail. 

Same, 22, together. 

Savyn, save. 

Sawe, 301, 352, speech, discourse. It 

is employed by more recent writers 

in the sense of a proverb. 
Sawys, 88, sights. 
Sawtere, Psalter. 
Schadu, shadow. 
Schafftys, 180, shafts. 
Schape, 141, escape. 
Schapman, 268, merchant. 
Scharlys, 181, vide Cherlys. 
Scharpe, sharp. 
Scbelchowthys, 180, wonders. 
Schep, 148. 
Schep, sheep. 
Schet, shut. 
Schon, 59, shoes. 
Schonde, 342, destructioQ, ruin. 
Schryve,86, confess. 
Schrowde, 28, shroud. 
Sclawndryd, slandered. 
Sole, 52, slay. 
Sclepyr, 100, slippery. 
Scleppe, sleep. 
Sclow, slew. 
Scowte, 136, 217, 218, 219, scout. A 

term of reproach and contempt. 
Se, 20, throne. 
Se, 3, 57, sea. 



GLOSSARY. 



4S1 



Sefoe, seven. 

Sefnt, seventh. 

Seydy said. 

Seyd, 133> seed. 

Sekj^rlvy securely. 

Sel, 284, 295, time. '' Seel, tyme, 

tempus," Prompt. Parv. 
Semely, comely. 
Semlaut, 163, similar. 
Seoe, 4, see. 
Senstere, 386, sempster. 
Senues, 319, sinews. 
Serge, 292, search. 
Seryattly, 273, separately, one by one, 

in order. 
Serteyn, certain. 
Sertys, 91, &a, certainly. 
Ses, cease. 
Sesare, Caesar. 
Sese, 1, seeth. 
Sesyd, 121, received. 
Sett, 242, abide. 
Sew, 15, 244, follow. 
Sewyng, following. 
Sewre, sure. 
Sewte, 193, suit. 

Shende, 19, 38, &c., ruin, destroy. 
Sbenshipp, 50, 104, ruin. 
Shent, 26, ruined. 
Shert, 310, shift. 
Shynand, 177 , shining. 
Shyrlyng, 180. 
Shytt, shut. 
Sho, 28, shoe. 
Short, 234, shorten. 
Shray, 180. 
Shrewe, 206, curse. 
Shrewyd, 309, cursed. 
Sybb, 54, relation. 
Sybbest, 226, nearest in relationship 
Syeng, sighing. 
Signuure, 3(>7, signification. 
Syndony, 336, cloth. 
Synfolest, 75, most sinful. 
Syse, 13, 233, assises. 
Syte, sight. 
Syth, si^ht. 
Sythe, since. 
Sythe, 249, sayeth. 
Sytteno^e, 209. seemly, becoming. 
Skafhald, skafibld. 
Skaypst, escapest. 
Skylle, 36, 55, &c., reason, 
Skore, 128, scour. 
Slawe, slain. 



Sle, vide sde. 

Sleytys, 211, sleights, deceits. 

" Sleythe, astncia," Prompt. Parv. 
Smertly, 51, quickly. 
Smyght, smite. 
Smyth, 269, deliver. " Smyth up " 

would here be equivalent to '' pay 

up," 
Smytyht, 81, smiteth, pierceth. 
Suelie, 121, quickly, suddenly. 
Socowre, succour. 
Socurraunce, 220, salvation. 
Soferauns, sufferance. 
Sukyn, 28, sucked. 
Solas, 87, solace. 
Somowue, summon. 
Sond, 95, messenger. 
Sonde, 32, 52, providence. 
Sonde, 42, sand, t. e., earth. 
Sondys, 170, messengers. 
Sone, soon. 
Sone, son. 

Surwatorie, 333, place of sorrow. 
Sorwe, sorrow. 
Soserye, 304, sorcery. 
Sote, sweet. 
So the, truth. 
Sotyllv, 270, slily. 
Sotylte, subtilly. 
Sotyl, subtle. 
Sottys, 163, fools. 
South, sought. 
Sowe, 269, saw. 
Sowyht, 74, soweth. 
Sownd, sound. 
Spedful, 93, expeditious. 
Sperd, 66, 309, bolted. 
Spy lie, 13, destroy. 
Sprad, spread. 
Sprytt, 68, spirit. 
Starkly, 124, stoutly. 
Stavys, 271, staves. The old form is 

still retained in the English version 

of the gospels. 
Sted, 27, moment. 
Stey, 361, rise up. 
Stelyn, 179, steal. Stelyn awey, t. e, 

** go away privily," as in our trans- 
lation of the Bible. 
Steracle, 208, sight. A poem in the 

Appendix to Walter Mapes, ed. 

Wright, p. 297, says of women, 
" They hem rejoise to see and to be 
sayne. 

And to seke sondry pilgremages ; 



CiLOSSARV. 



Al grcte eatieryoges to walken upon 
the play ne. 
And at tiararlet to Bltte on bigli 



Stevene, mnw. A time orperronnins 
nny action previously fixed by mes- 
sage, order, or summotia. See 
Tyrwiiil I'll Chancer. 

Stye, 17, tnount. 

Slyed, 16, mouRtei). 

Styk, stick. 

StywBrd, 8, (tewird. 

Stomele, stumble. 

Stondynee, 190, notwithatandin);. 

Slolte, 217, itup. 

Stow 217, siQ\>- 

Stownde, 14, 36, time. 

Sudary, 358, napkin. " Tbe siidane 
thai WBB on hii heed not lejd with 
(he ahctis, but by itself 
into k place," Joh. cap. : 
liffe'a translation. 

-Suerd, snord. 

Sum dele, IVi, somewhat. 

SupportiicicHi, 130, support. 

Sustenlacioii.Sr.mpport. 

Sature, 201, suitor 

iiwap, S, bbw. 

Swappyn);p, 182, striking. 

Swem, 72, sorrow. 

Swemful, 72, sorrowful. 

Swemynj 



."'S' 



or ru wing. 
aweiyngi IQU, id6, darling. 
Swicfie, siicb. 
Snyok, 30, 36, labour. 
Swylhe, 43, immediately. 
Swopge,331, Rwooii. 
Swroot, sueal. 

le, 14, swoon. 



Tabbard, 244, eoat. " Tabbatd, col- 

lobium," Prompt. Parv. 
Tnke, 22, give. 
Talkyn, 69, cnnverMtioii. 
Tan, taken. 
Taal, 162, try, feel. 
Tee, 33, go, draw towards. Sax. 
Tekyl, 134. 
Teyl, 30, reckon. 
Tene, 7. 9, 18, iojiiry. 
Tent, 93, heed. 
Teryeug, 80, tarrying. 
Tesiyficaeion, 69, tesiioiony. 
Tbaralle, 2U9. thrall, ilave. 
The, thrive. The phrase ■' so mot I 



very frcqiif 
The, 152,tliai 
Tliedom, 131), prosperily. So aba in 

the Sevyn Siiges 5W, "That hit 

mai liiive nothedom." Seemyoote 

on Ihiit line, p. 41S. 
TherkenesBi-, darkness. 
Therlys, 18 
Thyrkiies, darkness. 
Thyrlyd,2»7, pierced. 
Thyrlyng, 17, piercing. 
Tho, those. 
Tholyd, 183, suffered. 
Thi'-e, there. 
Tborw, through. 
Thralle, 351, space of time. Used 

generally as " thrawe." 
Thrawe, 247, thrust. 
Threste, 190, lliirst. 
',''hretly, thirty. 
Throwys, Ihroe?. 
Thrust, 326, thirst. 
Tide, 1,S0, 201, time. 
Tjl, to. 
Tylle, to. 
Tylh, 18, quicklv. 
Tjthyiiges, 3, tithes. 
To, loo. 

I'o-breke, 157, break to pieces. 
Tolle, 180, toll. 
To-pynde, 32, 179, pined away, tor* 

1'ormentrv, 195, tormenliiig. 

To-torn, SO, torn to pieces. 

To-luiidjr 45. 

Toivaly. 2"; towel (bis). 

Trace, 56 Irace, 

Tray M5 betray. 

Trayu, 360, artifice. 

Trey, 7, 18, trouble. 

Trepett, 186, stroke. " Trypei, tri- 

pula," Prompt. Pwv, 
Tretable, 214, tractable. 
Trelowre, 541, traitor. 
Tronp, throne. 
Trowyste, 3S5, thiokest. 
Turteljs. "'i, turtle doves. 
Tway, 373, two. 

Twejriers, 25, gen. pi. of tweyo, q. t. 
Twynne, 208, twayne. 



S 272, f 



Undyrlyog, 30, sen-ant, depemlaot. 



OLOSSART. 



43S 



Uuhede, 27, 196, uafuld^ bring to 
light. 

Unkende, 8, 27, unnatural. 

Unknowlage, 121, ignorance. 

Unqwyt, 308, unrequited, unre- 
venged. 

Unteresr, 176, uttermost. 

Unthende, 36, 

Upryth, 293, straight. This word 
does not here imply a perpendicular 
position, it being applied indiflfe- 
rently to persons lying as well as 
standing. See Tyr'whitt's glos. to 
Chaucer. *' Yf thou be wyse, slepe 
nat boUe upright,*' Hormanui Vul- 
garia, fol. 39. 

Vath, 321, a word of exclamation. 
Vevn, vain. 
Velony, villany. 
Vengeable, revengeful. 
Verament, truly. 
Verray, true. 
Vervent, fervent. 
Vervently, fervently. 
Vesytation, visitation. 
Vest, 114, covered. 
Voydnes, 127, eiopliness. 
Vowchesaff, vouchsafe. 

Wace, 284, was. 

Wayle, 257, bewail. 

Wayten, 340, watch. 

Walkyn, 21, sky. This word is used 
by Shakespeare and a few later 
writers. 

Wantruste, 225, want of confidence. 

War, 6, aware. 

Ware, 197, work, business. 

Warly, 334, slily. " Warely or sly- 
ly," Prompt. Parv. 

Wast, 31, wasted. 

Watt, 294, fellow. 

Wawys, waves. 

Weche, which. 

Weche, 338, watch. 

Wede, 28, clothing. 

Wele, 24, wealth. 

Weleaway. Probably the burden of 
an old song ; see The Geste of Ky ng 
Horn, 1499, 

" He made Rymenild a lay. 
Ant hueteide Weylaway." 

Welsom, 31, sorrowful. 

Wem, 5, bldl, blemish. 

Wen, weue, 5, doubt. 



Wenche, a young woman. It is 

sometimes used in an opprobrious 

sense. 
Wende, go. 
Weue, 1, ween, think. 
Wenyth, thinkeih. 
Werche, work. 
Werd, world. 
Werdly, worldly. 
Were, 147, weary. 
Werme, worm. 
Wete, know. 
Wethys, ways. 
Weylle, well. 
Whanhope, 13, despair. 
Whele, wheel. 
Why, 46, cause. 
Whight, vide wight. 
Whylys, wiles. 
Whyll, whilst. 
Whylsum, 203, doubtful. " Wylsome 

or dowtefulle,*' Prompt. Parv. 
Whyt, 298, quick. "As whyt as 

thought," a proverb common at the 

the present day. 
Whoys, whose. 
Whonde, 123. 
Whoo, woe. 
Wight, person. 
Wyghtly, 161. 
Wyk, wicked. 
Wylys, wiles. 
Wynde, 60. 
Wyst, known. 
With-sett, 212, withstand. 
Wytys, creatures. 
Woke, 4. 

Wolde, 16, dominion. 
Wone, dwelling. 
Wood, 3, wide. 
Wood, mad. 
Wost, knowest. 
Woundyn, wound. 
Woundyr, 214, wonderful. 
Wrake, 94, 137, 200, mischief. 
Wrecche, wretch. 
Wreke, 163, 181, revenged. 
Wrokyn, 29, avenged. 
Wrowtb, wrought. 
Wundyrfoille, wonderful. 
Wurchepyd, worshipped. 
Wurchepp, 218, good reputation. 
Wurdys, words. 

Xad, 276, shed. See notes, p. 416. 
Xal, shall. 

F F 



434 



GLOSSARY. 



Xulde, should. 

^atys^ gates. 

3einanry, 1, yeomanry. See Tyr- 
whitt*s note on v. 101 of the (Can- 
terbury Tales, for an account of 
this class of persons. 



jerdys, rods, wands. 
3even, given, 
jeven, even. 
$evyih, givitb. 
3itt, yet. 
3onge, youth. 



TH£ END. 



LUMDON : 
F. 8H0BBRL, JUN., 51. RUPERT 5TUBKT, HAVM ARRCt, 
PRINTER TO H. R. H. PRINCE ALBERT. 



THE MARRIAGE 



Wiit anti Wiistiom, 

AN ANCIENT INTERLUDE. 

TO WniCR ARE ADDED 

ILLUSTRATIONS OF SHAKESPEARE 

AND 

THE EARLY ENGLISH DRAMA. 

EDITED BY 

JAMES ORCHARD HALLIWELL, ESQ., F.R.S., 

HON. M.R.I.A., HON, M.R.B.L., F.8.A., ETC. 




LONDON: 
PRINTED FOB THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY. 



VRRDERICK SHOBERL, JUNIOR, 

PRINTER TO HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS PRINCE ALBERT, 

51, l.UFKHT STKBKT, HAYMARKKT, LONDON. 



COUNCIL 



OF 



THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY. 



THE MOST NOBLE THE MARQUESS OF CONYNGHAM, K.P. 

Wictf^xtiititnii. 

THE EARL OP POWIS, K.G. 

THE EARL OP GLENGALL. 

THE EARL HOWE. 

THE RT. HON. LORD FRANCIS EGERTON, M.P. 

THE RT. HON. LORD BRAYBROOKE. 

THE RT. HON. LORD LEIGH. 

THOMAS AMYOT, ESQ., F.R.S., TREAS. 8.A. 

WILLIAM AYRTON, ESQ., F.R.S., F.S.A. 

SIR ANDREW BARNARD, LIEUT. GEN., K.C.B. 

BERIAH BOTFIELD, ESQ., M.P. 

J. PAYNE COLLIER, ESQ., F.S.A., DIRECTOR. 

BOLTON CORNEY, ESQ. 

PETER CUNNINGHAM, ESQ., TREASURER. 

THE REV. ALEXANDER DYCE. 

SIR HENRY ELLIS, K.H., F.R.S., F.S.A. 

JOHN FORSTER, ESQ. 

HENRY HALLAM, ESQ., P.R.S., V.P.S.A. 

J. O. HALLIWELL, ESQ., F.R.S., F.S.A. 

THE REV. WILLIAM HARNESS. 

WILLIAM C. MACREADY, ESQ. 

SAMUEL NAYLOR, ESQ. 

T, J. PETTIGREW, ESQ., F.R.S. F.S.A. 

J. R. PLANCIIE, F.SQ., F.S.A. 

WILLIAM J. THOMS, ESQ., F.S.A. 

F. GUEST TOMLINS, ESQ., SECRETARY. 

EDWARD V. UTTERSON, ESQ., F.S.A. 

SIR FREDERICK BEILBY WATSON, K.C.H., F.R.S. 



The Council of the Shakespeare Society desire it to be understood 
that they are not answerable for any opinion& or observations that 
may appear in the Society's publications ; the Editors of the several 
works being alone responsible for the same. 



INTRODUCTION. 



The members of the Shakespeare Society are again 
indebted to the indefatigable research of the Reverend 
L. B. Larking, and the discriminating liberality of 
Sir Edward Dering, Bart., for a most curious addition 
to our materials for the history of the early English 
drama. Scarcely a year has elapsed since Mr. Larking 
discovered the only contemporary manuscript of any of 
Shakespeare's plays known to be in existence ; and the 
MS. now found is, it will be seen, of a nature equally 
unexpected and nearly as curious, if not -more intrinsi- 
cally valuable. For such discoveries, all who are in any 
way interested in the knowledge of our early theatrical 
history cannot but feel deeply grateful ; and there are 
generally so many difficulties in the way of opening to 
the world the treasures deposited in the rich archives of 
our ancient families — difficulties which often arise from 
necessary and prudential motives, that it is really a 
subject of congratulation to find that perhaps one of the 
most important sources for the historv of our drama is 



VI INTRODUCTION. 

shielded by no considerations of the kind. No member 
of this Society will fail to appreciate the generosity of 
Sir Edward Dering — 

I will most thankful be ; and thanks, to men 
Of noble minds, is honourable meed. 

And at the same time that a noble example is given 
to the owners of literary treasures throughout the 
country, the discovery of the ancient interlude of the 
" Contract of a Marriage between Wit and Wisdom " 
affords a striking lesson to literary antiquaries to pause 
before they substantiate conjectures and probabilities as 
matters of fact, and hesitate at assertions respecting the 
identity or non-existence of MSS. and rare books. We 
are constantly in the habit of seeing a notice to the 
effect that such a book or MS. is unique. Time passes, 
and two or three other copies are exhibited. In fact, 
no book can be safely so designated, and it is equally 
dangerous to assert that any particular work never 
existed, merely because no copy of it happens to be 
known. We have by no means come to the conclusion 
of our literary discoveries, which of late years have been 
too numerous and important, overthrowing theories and 
correcting errors, not to teach additional caution even to 
the most scrupulously careful. It must be remembered 
that publications of an antiquarian character are more 
peculiarly subject to slight mistakes, and should there- 
fore be visited with some allowance for their liability 
to error. 

So little, indeerl, was Mr. Larking's second discovery 



INTRODUCTION. Vll 

anticipated, that the Rev. A. Dyce, speaking of an 
allusion to the ** Marriage of Wit and Wisdom," asserts, 
" no such drama ever existed ;" ^ very strong language, 
and for which so careful an editor as Mr. Dyce ought 
to have had some warrant. The drama which " never 
existed " is printed in the following pages, and possibly 
not for the fii*st time ; but no early printed copy has 
been mentioned by our antiquaries, nor is one known to 
exist. An anonymous writer in the Society's Papers, 
vol. ii., p. 76, takes upon himself to confirm Mr. Dyce's 
assertion, and gives us the additional information that 
the real source of the mystery was still to be unravelled, 
that certainly no such piece as the Marriage of Wit and 
Wisdom ever did exist, but that it was only a " mis- 
nomer " for the " Marriage of Wit and Science ! " 
Now, letting alone the present discovery, which of 
course sets the matter at rest, was it likely that the 
author of the play of " Sir Thomas More " should 
allude so distinctly and positively to " Wit and Wis- 
dovi^'' and make observations suited only to those two 
characters, if he had really made a " misnomer " for 
another and a different play, in which, I believe, the 
character of Wisdom does not appear ? This is one of 
the many instances of the want of sufficient discri- 
mination in antiquarian conjectures — conjectures which 

* Sir Thomas More, a Play, p. ^^, It is very probable Mr. Dyce 
concluded that the play of Wit and Wisdom never existed, because the 
author of Sir Thomas More adapted fragments of Lusty Juventus to suit 
that title. The true meaning of this, however, may be accounted for 
on another and much more probable supposition. 



VIU INTRODUCTION. 

not unfrequently prove of incalculable injury to the 
interests of real science. 

In the anonymous play of Sir Thomas More, written 
probably about the year 1590, "My Lord Cardinal's 
players " are introduced, exhibiting a play .within the 
play itself, a practice not uncommon formerly, and 
sanctioned by Shakespeare. When asked what plays 
were ready for representation, the player replies — 

Divers, my lord ; 7%e Cradle of Security^ 

Hit nail o* th* head^ Impatient Poverty, 

The Play of Four F8y Dives and Lazarus^ 

Lusty JuventuSj and The Marriage of Wit and Wisdom. 

The title of the last takes More's fancy, and is accord- 
ingly selected — 

The Marriage of Wit and Wisdom ! That, my lads! 
rU none but that. The theme is very good. 
And may maintain a liberal argument. 

The guests present, when this was to be acted, were 
the Lord Mayor and aldermen of London. Shortly 
before the time appointed for the commencement of the 
play, the Vice, ready dressed, solicits permission to 
speak with More, when the following dialogue takes 
place : — 

More, How now, what*8 the matter ? 

Vice, We would desire your honour but to stay a little ; one of my 
fellows is but run to Ogles for a long beard for young Wit, and he*ll be 
here presently. 

More, A long beard for young Wit ! Why, man, he may be without 
a beard till he come to marriage, for Wit goes not all by the hair. When 
comes Wit in ? 



\ 



INTRODUCTION. IX 

Vice. In the second scene, next to the Prologue, mj lord. 

More. Why, play on till that scene come, and by that time Wit*8 
beard will be grown, or else the fellow returned with it. And what part 
playest thou ? 

Vice. Inclination the Vice, my lord. 

More. Gramercy, now I may take the vice, if I list ; and wherefore 
bast thou that bridle in thy hand? 

Vice. 1 must be bridled anon, my lord. 

More. An thou beest not saddled too, it makes no matter, for then Wit*8 
inclination may gallop so fast, that he yrUl outstrip Wisdom, and fall to 
foUy. 

Vice. Indeed, so he does to Lady Vanity ; but we have no folly in our 
play. 

More. Then there's no wit in it. Til be sworn ; folly waits on wit, as 
the shadow on the body, and where wit is ripest there folly still is 
readiest. But begin, I prethec : we'll rather allow a beardless* Wit, that 
Wit all beard to have no brain. 

The trumpet sounds, and the Prologue enters, 
saying — 

Now, for as much as in these latter days, 

Throughout the whole world in every land. 

Vice doth increase, and virtue decays. 

Iniquity having the upper hand ; 

We therefore intend, good gentle audience, 

A pretty short interlude to play at this present, 

Desiring your leave and quiet silence 

To show the same, as it is meet and expedient. 

It is called the Marriage of Wit and Wisdoniy 

A matter right pithy and pleasant to hear. 

Whereof in brief we will show the whole sum ; 

But I must be gone, for Wit doth appear. 

It is singular that the play which is now acted by 
them, instead of being part of the interlude here printed, 



X INTRODUCTION. 

should be nothing more than an alteration of Lusty 
Juventns, ingeniously adapted so as to suit the other 
title. As more than one explanation can be given, I 
shall content myself with stating the facts as I find 
them ; merely observing that in the list of plays given 
above, Lusty Juventus occurs immediately before Wit 
and Wisdom. Perhaps the latter was old-fashioned 
and out of date at the time Sir Thomas More was com- 
posed. At all events, it is a curious circumstance, and 
it is possible further investigation may set the author's 
reasons in their true light. From the quotations given 
above, we had good grounds for believing that an inde- 
pendent play under the same title had existed in some 
shape or other before the year 1590. Mr. Larking's 
discovery proves such expectations to be well founded, 
and that there is no connexion between " Wit and 
Wisdom " and " Wit and Science." Two plays under 
the latter title are still preserved, one in Mr. Bright*s 
manuscript, the other printed about 1570. 

The MS. from which our text is printed is a small 
quarto volume, containing 32 leaves, measuring 7i by 
6 inches, and in very bad condition. The state of the 
MS. has, in some few instances, rendered a satisfactory 
reading next to impossible, without the assistance of 
another copy ; while the original transcriber was evi- 
dently a person of no education, and has blundered most 
egregiously . The casual observer will detect many errors ; 
even the arrangement of the acts and scenes is inaccu- 
rate ; but we have thought it better to give a faithful 
copy of the manuscript, rather than attempt to form a 



INTRODUCTION. XI 

Tersion agreeable to a modem reader. There are^ after 
all, but few difficulties of any serious moment ; and as 
the interlude is worth a perusal for its own sake, we 
may perhaps venture to hope it will have a small share 
of attention as a work of the art in its infancy in this 
country. 

Before twenty years had elapsed from the date of 
this play, which may almost be called a primitive com- 
position, Shakespeare had given to the world many of 
those wonderful works that reached the high position of 
perfect dramatic excellence. So rapid a transition and 
growth is unexampled in the history of any literature, 
and we look in vain to account for it from any ordinary 
causes. It was a. time when history was a dry and 
inaccurate chronicle, and fiction completely puerile. 
Those two sciences were stationary, while the drama was 
progressing with such wonderful advances. And it is 
such reflections that invest with peculiar interest the 
few relics which immediately preceded the productions 
of the Avonian poet. Few of them fail to illustrate 
his plays or his progress in one way or other, and the 
discovery now made adds one link to the chain. An 
enthusiastic inquirer might see in this the germ of a 
character introduced in the " Merry Wives of Windsor;" 
and the mere possibility is worthy accurate and careful 
investigation, for in the history of Shakespeare and his 
plays, the paucity of facts invites conjectural discus- 
sion; and however we may deprecate the danger of 
hasty deductions, and the liability of falling into them 
sometimes imperceptibly, which the greatest caution 



xii INTRODUCTION. 

cannot always avoid, there is a charm invested in the 
subject that renders the pursuit one of the most en- 
gaging entertainments in literature. 

J. 0. H. 

February 22nd, 1846. 



CONTENTS. 





PAGE 


1. The Interlude of Wit and Wisdom . 


1 


2. Notes ..... 


65 


3. Shakespeare*s Tempest 


. 81 


4. Curious Dramatic Manuscript 


S6 


5. The Marriage of the Arts 


. 86 


6. Basse*s Epitaph on Shakespeare 


92 


7. Supposed Poems hy Shakespeare 


93 


8. Trinculo's Strange Fish 


94 


9. Prologue and Epilogue to Richard III. 


99 


10. Ballad on Troilus and Cressida . 


102 


11. Lenton Stuff, by Elderton 


. 105 


12. Adcw, my pretty pussy 


108 


13. Forman on Shakespeare's Plays 


. Ill 


14. Shakespeare's Birth-Place 


116 


15. Epitaph on Combe 


. 117 


16. Epitaph on Shakespeare 


118 


17. Thomas and John Shakespeare 


. 118 


18. The Young GaUant's Whirligig 


120 


19. The Diggers of Warwickshire 


140 


20. Seal of Sir Thomas Lucy 


. 142 


21. The Property of the Shakespearcs . 


. 143 


22. These Knights will hack 


145 



Contract of iHariage 

Wiit anti Wiisinomt. 



\ 



U.-^ ' 



The Contract * of a 

Mange betweene wit and wisdome 

very frntefoll and mixed full of 

pleasant mirth as well for 

the beholders as the 

readers or hearers : 

neuer before im 

printed. 



The deuision of the partes for six to playe this interlude. 



The Prologue 

Idelnes 

Epilouge 

Seueritie 

Ircksomnes 

Snatch 

Honest recreat : 

Indulgence 
Wisdome 
Mother Bee 



For 
one. 



For 
one. 



For 
one. 



Wantonis 
Fancy 

DOLLE 

Witt 

Serch 

Inquisiton 

Good Nurture 

Catch 

Lob 



1 
1 



For 
one. 



For 
one. 



For 
one. 



1579. 



^ This word is nearly obliterated in the original MS., and I am 
somewhat doubtful of the correctness of the reading here adopted, 
which is Mr. Larking*8 ingenious conjecture. 



THE MARIAGE 



OP 



WITT AND WISDOME. 



The Prologue. * 

Who raarkes the common course 

of youthftdl wandring wits, 
Shall se the most of them frequent 

where Idlenes still sits ; 
And how the Ircksomnes 

doth murther many a one, 
Before that thay to wisdomes-ward 

the halfe way yet haue gone. 
Excepte good Nurture doe, 

with some seueritie. 
Conduct them to Pemassus mount 

wel fauurt (!) with leuitie. 
But if it hap in fine, 

that Witt the mate be made 
Of Wisdome such a worthy wyfe, 

to foUowe godly trade ; 
Then shall you see whereon 

Dame Vertue doth depend ; 
Not all the world besides, forsooth, 

so meet a match can mend : 

' This prologue is written as prose in the original MS. 



THE PROLOGUE. 

But els, if Wit should wag, 

and hap to waue awry. 
Without, then, any rightful! rule, 

and reasons good supplie, 
Then Fancy frames eflFects, 

to brin^ his braine aborde. 
And shelue his ship in hauens mouth, 

yere it the seas haue scoured. 
Whereby you may perceaue 

that Wisdome i * * * 
That must conforme a youthfuU Witt 

and bring it in good plight. 
The proofe the sequell showes, 

for I haue done my charge. 
And to the actors must giue place 

to sett it forth at large. [Earit, 

^ The M6. is here defaced. 



VLfie ^ivf^t S'tme. 



Enter Seueritie, and his wi/e^ Indulgence, and there 

sonne^ Wit. 

Seueritie. 

My Sonne, draue neare, giue eare to me, 

And marke the cause aright. 
For which I call the to this place, 

Lett all thy whole delight 
Be still in seruing God aright. 

And trading vertues trace. 
And labour learning for to gett, 

Whilste thou hast time and space. 
I now haue brought the on the way 

The thing for to attaine. 
Which, Sonne, if thou mightst hap to hit, 

Wil tume vnto thy gaine : 
Thow knowest how chargiable a thing 

Thy learning is to me ; 
Thou knowest abo the care I take 

For to prouide for the ; 
And now since that thyne age drawe on 

To natures riper state, 



8 THE MARIAGE OF 

My purpose is and full intent 

To find for the a mate, 
With whome thou mayest dispend the rest 

Of this thy life to come, 
And Joye as I thy father haue 

With this thy mother done. 

Indulgence. 

Indeed, good husband, that were good. 

We haue no more but he ; 
My hart, my thinks, ' wold be at rest 

Him matched for to see : 
But yet, my deare Seueritie, 

Be headAiU for your life. 
That she be able for to Hue, 

That ye shall take to wyfe. 

Seueritie. 

Well, as for that I shall for-se, 

For why I knowe rite well, 
That she whome I doe meane is rich, 

And highly doth excell ; 
Wherefore, sonne Witt, marke well my tale. 

Dame Wisdome is the wight, 
Whome you shall laboure to espouse 

With all your maine and might. 
And if that she will be your wyfe, 

Looke what I leaue be hind. 
You shall possosse it full and whole, 

According vnto kind : 
But if you find some worser haunt. 

And hap to rune by rote, 
I promisse the, before these folke, 

Thoust neuer cost me grote. 

' Me thinks. 



witt and wisdome. 9 

Witt. 

Deare father, for your graue aduice 

Bight humble thainks I giue, 
Entending to obay your charge, 

So long as I shall line ; 
Now if that Witt with Wisdome may 

Be linked fast in loue, 
Then Witt shall think him selfe right blest 

Of God that sits aboue ! 

Indulgence. 

Well said, good Witt, and hold the there, 

I tell the this before. 
Indulgence, when thay maried art. 

Hath buttur pence in store. 

Seuebitie. 

Such pampring mothers doe more harme 
Then ere thay can doe good. 

Indulgence. 

If you had felt the paine we feel. 
You then wold change your mood. 

Seueritie. 

You showe that you the mother are 

Of this the outward man. 
And not of mine ; for, if you ware. 

You wold be carfuU then 
To giue him counsell how to vse 

Him selfe for to aspire 
To Wisdomes frendships and her looue. 

The which we doe desire. 



10 the mariage of 

Indulgence. 

Alas ! good sir, why barken, Wit, 

What counsell I can giue ; 
When as thou commest to Wisdoms house, 

Then mayest thou it appreue : 
Take heade that thou art nete and fine, 

And go straight bolt vppright, 
And cast a chearfuU looke on her, 

Smilling at the first sight. 
And when thou commest to talke with her, 

Forgett not for to praise 
Her house, herselfe, and all her things, 

And still be glad to please ; 
Be diligent to doe for her, 

Be pleasant in her sight, 
Say as she sayeth, allthought that she 

Doe say the crowe is white ; 
And if she haae minde to oght, 

Allthought it cost red gould, 
Prouide it for her, and thou mayest be 

More welcome and more bolde. 

Seueritie. 

Se ! se ! what counsell you can giue. 

You shoue your nature plane ; 
This counsell liketh Wit right well, 

And maketh him al-to faine. 
But, sirra, if thou list to thriue, 

Marke well what I shall say. 
That Wisdome may become your wife, 

This is the redy waye : 
Applie your booke and still beware 

Of Idlenes, I say. 



WITT AND WISDOME. 11 

For he a enimy liatli bine 

To Vertue many a day. 
Be weare of Iroksomnis, I say, 

Wliich is a monstor fell, 
And neare to lady Wisdomes house 

Doth alwayes vse to dwell ; 
For he will haue a fling at you, 

And so will Idlenes, 
Therefore beware of these to folks, 

And God will sure you blesse. * 

Wit. 

As dutie doth requier in me, 

I thaink you humbly, 
For these your fatherly precepts, 

And purpose earnestly 
For to obserue that you command. 

And these my foes to watch. 
Least they perhaps, ere I beware, 

Me in there snares shuld catch. 

Indulgence. 

Well, yet before the goest, hold heare 

My blessing in a cloute, 
Well fare the mother at a neede. 

Stand to thy tackling stout. 

Wit. 

Mother, I thaink you hartily. 

And you, father, likwise ; 
And both your blessings heare I craue 

In this my enterprise. 

* The top of this page in the MS. is cut off, but there does not 
seem to be any of the text missing. 



12 THE MARIAGE OF 

BOTHE. 

God blese the, Wit, our sonne, 
And send the good successe. 

Wit. 

I thaink you both, and pray to God 
To send to you no lesse ! 

[Exeunt Seueritie and Indulgence. 

Wit. 

God grant this my purpose may 

Gome vnto good effect ; 
Well now I must aboute this geare, * 

I must it not forgett. [Eadt. 



Enter Idlenes, the vice, 

A ! sirra, my masters, 

How fare you at this blessed day \ 
What, I wen, all this compony 

Are come to se a play ! 
What lackest the, good fellow, 

Didest the nere se man before \ 
Here is a gasing ! I am the best man in the compony, 

When there is no more. 
As for my properties I am sure 

You knowe them of old : 
I can eate tell, I sweate and worke 

Tell I am a-cold. 

^ This line is crossed through in the original MS. 



WITT AND WISDOME. 13 

I am allwayes troubled with the litherlurden, 

I loue 80 to liger ; * 
I am so lasy, the mosse groweth an 

Inch thick on the top of my finger ! 
But if you list to knowe my name, 

I wis I am to well knowen to some men ; 
My name is Idlenes, the flower 

Of the frying-pan ! 
My mother had ij. whelps at one litter, 

Both borne in Lent ; 
So we ware both put into a mussellbote, 

And came saling in a sowes yeare ouer sea into Kent. 
My brother, Ercsomnis, and I, catch the doge, 

Being disposed to make mery, 

We gott vs both doune to Harlowe-bery. ' 
But what is that to the purpose 

Perhapes you wold knowe : 
Giue me leaue but a littell, 

And I will you showe. 
My name is Idelnes, as I tould you before, 
And my mother Ignorance sent me hether ; 

I pray the, sirra, what more ! 
Marry, my masters, she sent me the 

Gounterfait crainke for to play, 
And to leade Witt, Seuerities sone, out 

of the waye ; 
He should mock a marrige with Wisdome, 

In all hast, as thay talke ; 
But stay thare awhile, soft fier makes swet malt : 
I must be firme to bring him out of his 

Broune stodie, on this fashion, 

^ So in MS. for linger. 

^ The metrical arrangement in the MS. is most irregular, 
and I have here left it as it is found in the original. 



14 THE MARIAGE OF 

I will tarne ray name from Idlenes 

To Honest Recreation ; 
And then I will bring him to be Mistris 

Wantonnes man, 
And a&ith, then, he is in for a berd, get 

out how he can ! 
But soft, yet my masters, who is with in ! 

Open the dore and pull out the pine. 

Wantones efUrethy and tayeth. 

What, Dol, I say, open the dore ! 

Who is in the streate ! 
What, M' Idlenes ! lay a straw vnder 

your feete. 
I pray you, and me may aske you, 

what wind brought you hether. 

Idelnes. 

A littell wind, I warrent you ; 

I am as lite as any fether ! 
But harke the. 

Wantonis. 
What, it is not so : will he come indeade ? 

Idelnes. 

Nay, if I say the word, thou mayest beleue 

as thy creed : 
But when he comes, you must be curtious, 

I tell you, 
And you shall find him as gentell as a 

faulcon, 
Euery fooles fellowe. 

What, me thinkes you are with child ! 



witt and wisdome. , 15 

Wantonnes. 

Nay, my belly doth swell with eating 
of egges. 

Idlenes. 

Nay, by S. Anne, I am afraid it is a 

timpany with two legges ! 
Away, get the in ! [Eati. 

Enter Wit. 

My father he hath charged me 

The thing to take in hand. 
Which seames to me to be so hard. 

It cannot well be scand ; 
For I haue toyled in my booke, 

Where Wisdome much is praysed, 
But she is so hard to find, 

That I am nothing eased ; 
I wold I had bin set to blowe, 

or to some other trade, 
And then I might some leasure find. 

And better shift haue made ; 
But nowe I swinke and sweate in vaine, 

My labour hath no end. 
And moping in my study still. 

My youthiuU yeares I spend. 
Wold Gt>d that I might hap to hit 

Vpon some good resort. 
Some pleasant pastime for to find, 

And vse some better sporte. 

Idlenes. 

Mary, no better, I am euen as fitt 

For that purpose as a rope fi)r a theefe ; 



16 THE MARIAOE OF 

And you will bo lusty, cry hay ! 
Amongst knaues I am the cheefe ! 

Witt. 
What, good fellow, art thou ! what is thy name ? 

Idlenes. 

In faith I am Ipse^ he euen the 

very same ! 
A man of greate estimation 

in mine owne cuntry ; 
I was neuer stained but once, 

fijing out of my mothers plumtre. 

Wit. 

Thou art a mery fellowe and wise. 
And if thou kepe thy selfe warme. 

Idlenes. 

In faith, I haue a mother, Wit, 
But I think no harme. 

Wit. 

I pray the, what is thy name! 
To me it declare. 

Idlenes. 

Nay, I am no nigard of my name, 

For that I will not spare. 
Ha ! by the masse, I could haue told 

You euen now, 
Wliat a short brained villain am I, 

I am as wise as my mothers sowe ! 
I pray you, sur, what is my name ! 

Oannot you tell ? 



WITT AND WISDOME. 17 

I3 there any here that knowes where 

My godfather doth dwell ? 
GeDtellmen, if you will tarry while I 

goe luck, 
I am sure my name is in the church booke. 

Wit. 

I prethy, come of, and tell me thy name 
with redynis. 

Idlenes. 

Faith, if you will neades knowe, my name 
is Idelnes. 

Wit. 

Mary, fie one the, knaue ! I mene not 
thy compony. 

Idlenes. 

What, because I spoke in iest, will 

you take it so angerly ! 
For my name is Honest Recreation, 
I let you well to witt. 
There is not in all the world 
A companion for you more fitt. 

Wit. 

And if thy name be Honest Recreation, 
Thou art as welcome as any in this laund. 

Idlenes. 

Yea, mary is it ! 

Wit. 
Why, then, giue me thy hand. 



18 the mariage of 

Idlenes. 

In &ith, I thaink you. You are come 

of a gentell birth, 
And therefore I will bring you acquainted 

With a gentellwoman called Modest Mirth. 

Wit. 
Yea, mary, with all my hart, and God haue mercy. 

Idlenes. 

Why then, come away, come ! lett vs goe. 
How God be heare ! 

Wantonis. 

What, master Honest Recreation, 1 pray 
you drawo neare. 

Idlenes. 

Nay, I pray you come hether ; come, I 
pray ye. 

Wantonis. 
I come. 

Idlenes. 
Nay, but in any wise hide your belly. 

Wantonis. 
It is a childe of your getting. 

Idlenes. 

I, it hath fathers at largo ; but here comes in Witt, 
that is like to here all the char£:e.* 

' I may mcDtion once for all that 1 do not undertake to 
in every case the arrangement of the MS. This is yerse 



WITT AND WISDOME. 19 

G^ntellman, here is the gentellewoman. 
Kisse her, I say, I am a horson els ! 
If I had know[n]o yoa wold not a kist her, 
I wold haue kist her myselfe. 

Wit. 

Gentellwoman, this shalbe to desier you of more ac- 
quaintance. 

Wantonnos. 

Sir, a ought i may pleasuer you i will giue atendence ; 
to haue maney suters my lot dooth be&ll, but yet me 
think i lyk you best of all. 

Idlenes. 

Yea, she might haue had maney men of knaaery and 
of stellth. 

WONTANES. 

What saist thou ? 

Idlnes. 

Mary, you might haue had many men of brauery and 
wellth ; but yet me thinkes thor canot be a mach mor fit 
then betwcn Mistres Modst Mirth and you, Master 
Wite. 

WONTONES. 

That is well sayed. 

Idlnes. 
Yea, and that will be a redy carage to the rop. 

as proee, and it is somettmet idfiiablelopitKinre somewhat of the 
character of the original in sodi mttanu 

02 



20 THE MARIAGE OF 

WONTANES. 

What sayest thou ! 

Idelnts. 
That will be a spety marige, i hope J 

WONTONES. 

By my troth, I am so wery, I moust nodes sit down ; 
my legges will not houUd mee. 

Witt. 
Thin will I sit downe by you, if I may bo so bould. 

Idlenis. 

Heare is loue, sir reuerence, this geare 

is euen iitt ; 
Oh ! here is a hed hath a counting house 

full of witt ! 

Wit. 

I am sure you are cuninge in musick, and therefore, if 
you please, sing ys a songe. 

Wantinis. 
That will I, if it were for your ease. 

Here shall Wantonis sing this song to the tune of *•*• Attend 
the goe playe the ;'^ and hauing sung him a sleepe vpon her 
lappe^ let him snort ; then let her set a fooles hable on his 
hedy and colling his face : and Idlenis shall steale away his 
purse from him^ and goe his wayes, 

^ This part of the MS. appears to be written in another and 
more illiterate hand. 



WITT AND WISDOME. 21 

THE SONG. 

Ljo still, and heare iiest the, 

Good Witt, lye and rest the. 

And in my lap take thou thy sleepe ; 

Since Idlenis brought the. 

And now I have caught the, 

I charge the let care away creepe. 

So now that he sleepes full soundly, 

Now purpose I roundly. 

Trick this prety doddy. 

And make him a noddy. 

And make him a noddy ! 

Since he was vnstable, 

He now wares a bable, 

Since Idlenis led him away ; 

And now of a scoUar 

I will make him a coUiar, 

Since Wantonis beareth the swaye : 

Well, now I haue him chaunged, 

I neades must be rainging ; 

I now must goe pack me. 

For my gossops will lack mo. 

For my, &c. 

Enter Good Nurture, speaking this. 

I meruell where my schollard Wit 

Is now of late become ! 
I feare least with il compony 

He happen for to rune ; 
For I, Good Nurture, commonly 

Among all men aiu counted, 



22 THE MARIAOE OF 

But Witt, by this his straing so, 

I feare hath me renounced. 
Seueritie, his father, sure 

Is graue and wise withall. 
But yet his mother's pampring 

Will bring his sonne to thrall. 

Here he stayeth stumbling at Wit as he lyeth 
a sleep. 

Why, how now I how, what wight is this 

On home we now haue hit I 
Softe, let me se : this same is he, 

Ye, truly, this is Wit ! 

Here he awaketh him. 

What, Wit, I say, arise for shame ! 

0, God ! where hast thou bin ? 
The compony made the a foole 

That thou of late wast in. 

Here he riseth^ rubbing his eyes^ and sayiiig, 

O, arrant strumpet that she was that ran 
me in this case ! 

Good nurture. 

Nay, rather thou art much to blame 
To be with such in place. 

Here he wadieth his face and taketh 
of the bable. 

Gome on, I say, amend this geere. 
Beware of all temptation ; 
Your wearinis for to refrish, 
Take Honest Ilecreation. 



WITT AND WI8D0ME. 23 

He ddiuereth him Honest Recreation, 

Wit. 
I thaink you, Mr. Nurture, much for this 

your gentebiis. 
And will doe your oommandiments henceforth 

with willingnis. 

Good Nurture. 

God grant you may ; and, sirra, 

you awaight vpon him still. [Exit. 

Witt. 

I thaink you, sir, with all my hart, 

For this your greate good will ; 
One joumi more I meane to make, 

I think I was acurst ! 
God grant the second time may be 

More happy then the first ! 

[Thay bath goe out. 



Enter Idlenis. 

Ah ! sirra ! it is an old prouerb and a true, 

I sware by the roode ! 
It is an il wind that bloues no man to good. 
When I had brought Wit 

Into Wantonnis hampering. 
Then thought I it was time for me 

To be tempering. 
The cook is not so sone gone 



24 THE MARIAGE OF 

As the doges hed is in the porigpot ; 

Wit was not so sone asleepe. 

But my hand was in his hose. 

Wantonis is a drab ! 

For the nonce she is an old rig ; 

Bat as for me, my fingers are as good as 

a line twig. 
Now am I nue araid like a phesitien ; 
Now doe I not pas^ 

I am as reddy to cog with Mr. Wit as euer 1 was ; 
I am as very a tumcote as the wethercoke of Poles ; 
For now I will calle my name Due 
Disporte, fit for all sanies, ye. 
So, so, findly I can tume the catt in the pane. 
Now shall you heare how findly Master Doctor 
Can play the outlandish man. 
Ah ! by Got, me be the Doctor, 
Me am the fine knaue, I tell ye. 
And haue the good medicine for the maidens belly : 
Me haue the excellent medicine 
For the blaines and blister. 
Ah ! me am the knaue 
Ta giue the faire maid the glister ! 
How like you this, my masters ? 
The bee haue no so many herbes 
Whereout to suck hony, 
As I can find shifts whereby to get mony. 

Enter Snach and Catch. 
Idlenis. 



But, soft, awhile, my masters, 

Who haue wo heare ? 
These be craftv knaues, 

And therefore lie thou there ! 



lay daune the 
>• purse in a 
corner. 



WITT AND WI8D0ME. 25 

The song that Snach and Catch 
tingeUi together. 

I hath bin told, ben told, in prouerbs old, 
That souldiares suffer both hanger and cold, 
That souldiares suffer both hunger and cold ; 
And this sing we, and this sing we, 
We line by spoyle. by spoyle, we moyle and toyle ; 
Thus Snach and Catch doth keepe a coyle ! 
And thus liue we, and thus line we, 
By snatchin a ' catchin thus liue we. 

We come from sea, from sea, from many a fray. 
To pilling and poling euery day. 
To pilling and poling euery day : 
And thus skipe we, and thus skipe we, 
And ouer the hatches thus skipe we ! 

Catch. 

Hey liuely, by the gutes of a crab-louse, Snach, 

This is an excellent sporte ; 

Now we are come from Flushiu to the English port. 

There shall not a fat pouch 

Come nodding by the way. 

But Snach and Catch will desier him to stay. 

Snatch. 

Yea, by the hedges hed. Catch, 
Now we will lick the spickets ; 
But, by the masse, my hose be full 

Of Spanish crickets ! 
Sirra, dost thou not knowe Idlenis, 

That counterfait knaue? 

^ So in MS* for and. 



26 the mariage of 

Catch. 

Ye, by St. Jane, I knowe him well for a kuaue. 
He hath his purse full of mony, 
If we cold him gett. 

Snatch. 
Where had he it ! 

Catch. 
I tell the, Snatch, he stole it from Witt. 

Snatch. 
Who told the so I declare it with redinis. 

Catch. 

By the brainea of a black pudding, 

^Tis such a knaue thou hast not hurde : 

It was told me of Wantonis. Here tkay espie him. 

Idlenis. 

Ah, that drabe, she can cacklel like a cadowe ; 

I pray you behold, my masters, 

A man may shape none by ther shadowe. 

Snach. 
O, wonderfuU ! I wold he ware burst. 

Catch. 

Nay, I pray the lett me spake first. 

Master Idlenis, I am glad to se you mery, hartly. 

Idlnis. 

In fiuth, I thaink you.^ 

* The word hartily was here- inserted, but lias been erased, 
apparently by the original transcriber. 



WITT AND WI8D0ME. 27 

But I had rather haue your romc as your 
componie. 

Snatch. 

Master Idlenis, how haue you done 
in a long time i 

Idlnis. 
Gome, come, an hand of you to pick a purse of mine. 

Catch. 

Nay, sir, I hope you trust vs better ; 
I must neades borrow your ring to seale a 
letter. 

Idlenis. 

By my leaue, in spite of my teath ; 

God a mercy horse ! 

This is that must neades be, 

Quoth the good man, whenn he made his wyfe 

Pine the baskit. Patiencs, perforce. 

Well, my masters, if you will goe with mo, 

I will carry you to and old wyfe that 

Makes pudings :> hold your nose thare ^ 

And if you will, you may haue ledges of 
Mutton stufte with heare. 

Catch. 

This is a craftic fox, but, by a herring toke : 
I haue a ^ood nose to be a pore mans sowe, 
I can smell an appell seueu mill in a haye mowe. 
Vbi animm ihi oculuSy where he loues there 
he lookes. 

^ Three words arc here omitted, causa pudoris. 



28 THE MARIAGE OF 

Hey liuely, these will helpe to bring me 
out of John Tapsters bookes. 

Now he shall find the purse. 

Heere after thay haue scambledfor the mony^ they shall 
spet in the purse cnid ffiue it him againe. 

Snach. 

Hold heare ! thou shalt not lease all ; thy purse shall 
not come home weeping for lose ; and as for the, thou 
shalt be commist to Dawes crosse. 

Idlenis- 

Euell gotten worse spent : 

By thift this mony came ; 

I got it with the deuell, 

And now it is gone with his name ! 

Oatch. 

But, sirra, if we let him escape, 

Perhaps we may haue a checke ; 

If we should chance to looke through an hemp 

Windowe, and our arse brake our necke. 

Snatch. 

Why, we will pull him vp by a rope 
To the tope of the house, 
And then lett him fall. 

Catch. 



Nay, then, I knowe a better way ; 
We will rune his arse against the wall 



r 



Snatch. 

Nay, by the mase, 1 haue a deuise much 
more mete ^ 



WITT AND WI8D0MB. 29 

Where I lay last night, I stole away a sheete : 
We will take this and tie it to his hed, 
And soo we will blind him; 
And, sirra, I charge you, when you here 

any body comming, 
If they aske you any question, say you goe 

a-mumming. 

Here they turne him aboute^ and bind his hands behind^ 
him^ and tye the sheet abotUe his face. 

Idlenis. 

A-mumming, quoth you ; why, there can be nothing 
worse then for a man to goQ a-mumminge when he hath 
no mony in his purse. 

Catch. 
Well, yet we charge you to doe on this &shion. 

Snatch. 

Farewell, Mr. Idlenis, and remember 
your lesson. 

Here thay rune one to one cornor of the stage^ and the 
other to the other^ and spake like cuntrymen, to begild 
him. 

Idelnis. 

A, sirra, in faith this geer cottons : 
I go still a mumming ; 
Euen poore I, all alone, without ether pipe 
or druming. 

Snatch. 

Good day, neighbour, jjood day ! 

Tis a faire graye morning, God be blessed ! 



30 the mariage of 

Catch. 

I, be Gis, twold be trim wether, 
And if it were not for this mist : 
What, those fellowes bo all day at brakfast ; 
I win thay make feasts : 
What, Jack, I say, I must hange you 
Before you will serue the beasts : 
How now, Gods dagers ! death ! whoe 
haue we heare? 

Idlenis. 

O, for the passion of God, lose me ! False knaues 
haue robd me of all the mony I got this yeere. 

[Bere thay becUe him. 

Snatch. 

Yea, ye rascall, is the matter so plane ! 
Gome, come, we must teach 
him his lesson againe. 

Catch. 

Sirra, now you haue learned a trick 

for your cumminge : 
When anybody comith, say you goe a-muminge. 

[Exit Snatch: Cat. 

Idlenis. 

A-muminge, quoth you : why, this geer 

will not settell ; 
Ether I rose on my lift side to day, or I 

pist on a nettell. 
Here is nuse, [quoth] the fox, when he lett a farte 

in the mominge ; 
If Wantonis knew this, she will neuer lin 

scominge ; 



WITT AND WISDOME. 31 

This same is kind cuckolds luck : 

These followes haue giuen me a drie pluck ; 

Now I haue neuer a crose to blesse me. 

Now I goe a-muraming. 
Like a poore pennilesse spirit^ 

Without pipe or druming ! 

Enter Wit, and Honist Recreation awaiting m him. 

Witt. 

Fye, fye, what kind of life is this ? 

to laboure all in vaine, 
To toil to gett the thing the which 

my witt cannot attaine. 
The journie semith wondrous long, 

the which I haue to make, 
To teare myselfe and beate my braines. 

And all for Wisdomes sake ! 
And it, God ^ knowes what may be&ll, 

And what luck God will send, 
If she will louo me when I come 

At this my joumyes end. 
This Honest Recreation delites me not at all ; 

For, when I spend the time with him, 
I bring myselfe in thrall ! 

[Here he steppeth back^ haveng espied Idlenis, 
But softe, what haue we heare I 
Some gost or dedly sperrit. 
That comes our journy for to stay, 
And vs for to affrite. 

Idlenis. 
Yea, by the mas, what, are ye comming ? 

* An s is wrongly inserted here by the transcriber. 



32 THE MARIAOE OF 

In faith, I am a penilesse spirit ; 
I goe still a-mumming. 

Wit. 

I conjure the to tell me what art thou, a man, a 
monster, a spirit, or what woldest thou haue i 

Idlenis. 

I am neither man, monster, nor spirit, but a pore, 
peniles knaue ! 

Witt. 
Wherefore is thy comminge ? 

Idlenis. 
Marry, to goe a-mumming. 

Wit. 

Yea, but what art thou ? 
May not that be knowen ! 

Idlenis. 

Why, what am I but a knaue, 
When all my mony is gone ? 

Wit. 

Gome, tell me thy name : 
I pray the haue done. 



Idlenis. 

A good honest knaues : 
Haue ye forgot so sone ? 

Wit. 

Why, but will ye not tell me 
How thou earnest thus drest ! 



WITT AND WISDOME. 33 



Idlenis. 



In &ith, gentell theaues, 
You yourselues knowes best. 

Wit. 

Doe I ! why, thou dost not know me ; 
The whorson patch ! 

Idlenis. 

Yes, I knowe it is ether 

Snatch or Catch. 
But in fiuth, gentell theaues, 

I goe still a-muming, 
Although it be ether 

Without pipe or druminge. 

Here shall WiT pul of the sheet ^ saying^ 

Wit. 

How sayest thou now ! 

Canst thou not see ? 
I pray the tell me, 

Dost thou know me ? 

Idlnib. 

O, the body of a Gorge, 

I wold I had them heare ; 

In feith, I wold chope them, 

Thay ware not so hack this seuen yeer ! 

Why, I am so could, 

That my teeth chater in my hed ! 

I haue stood here iij. dayes and iij. nights, 

Without ether meate or bread. 

D 



34 THE MARIAGE OF 



Wit. 

T pray the, what is thy name, 
And whether dost thou resorte ? 

Idlenis. 

Forsoth, for fault of a bettor. 
Is Due Disporte. 

Wit. 

Didst not the call thyselfe 

Honist Becreation, which deceued me onces. 

Idlenis. 

Why, I am a phesition. If it were I, 

a knaue shake my bones ! 
I am a greate trauelir. 

I lite on the dunghill like a puttock ! 
Nay, take me with a lye, 

And cut out the brane of my buttock. 

Wit. 

If thy name be Due Disporte, 
I wold be acquainted with the ; 
For in sporte I delight. 

Idlenis. 

Not vnder a cuppel of capons. 

And thay must be white. 
But if you will be acquainted 

With me, as you say. 
Then must you send this companion away ; 

For you and I must walke alone. 



witt and wisdome. .% 

Wit. 

Why, then, sirra, away, gett you gan. 

[Eait HoNiST Becreation. 

Idlenis. 

So now, come on with me 

To a frends house of mine, 

Tliat there we may to some sport. 

Wit. 

Com on, then. 

Here Idlenis hauing brought him to the den of Irck- 
SOMNES, shall leape away^ and Ircksomnes enter like a 
momtcTy and shall beat doune Wrt ttith his doub, 
saying, 

Ircksomnis. 

What wite is that 

Which comes so nere his pane! Here thayJUe. 

Wn falls doune. 
Wit. 

Alas, alas, now am I stund ! 

Ikcksomnis. 

Nay, nay, no force ! thou mightest 

a further stood ; 
If thou hadest scape 

Safe by any done. 

Thy luck ware to-to goo. [Eait, 

Ircksomnis leaueth him dead on the stage. 
Enter WiSDOME and sayeth. 

Of late abrode I harde report 
Tliat Wit makes many yowes, 

d2 



36 THE MARIAGE OF 

The lady Wisdome if he may 

To wyfe for to espouse ; 
But it I feare both Idelnis and Ircksomnis will sender. 
Soft, this same is Wit, that lieth bleading yonder. 

Heere she Aelpeth him rp. 

What, Wit, be of good cheare, 
And now I will sustaine the. 

Wit. 

O, Lady Wisdome, so I wold. 
But Ircksomnis hath slaien me. 

Wisdome. 

Well, yet arise, and doe as I shall tell, 
And then, I warrant the. 
Thou shalt doe well. 

Wit. 

I thaink you much : and though that I 

Am very much agreaued, 
Yet, sence your coraino^, sure my thinks 

I am right well releued : 
You showe your courtesie herein, 

Wherein I partly gesse 
That you doe knowe the cause right well 

Of this my deepe distresse. 
My fitther bad me labour still 

Your fauore to obtaine ; 
But it before I could you see, 

Full greate hath bin my paine. 
First Idlenis he brought me wo. 

Then Wantonis stept in. 
And, last of all, foule Ircksomnis 

His parte he doth begin. 



WITT AND WISDOME. 37 

WiSDOME. 

I thinke right well ; for many a one 

Hath come to sore decaye, 
When as it hapt that Ircksomnis 

Hath met them in the way. 
For I, poore Wisdome, here am plaste 

Among these craggie clifts, 
And he that seekes to win my loue 

Must venter many shifts ; 
But it I beare the greate good will, 

And here I promise the, 
If thou canst Ircksomnis destroy,' 

Thy lady I will be 5 
And to the end that may be done. 

Which I might well aford, 
Hold heere Perseuerance, I say, 

A good and lucky sword ; 
And call for Ircksomnis, 

And lett him feale thy force : 
Be stoute, for if he ouercome. 

He will haue no remorse ! 

Wit. 

My maddam deare, behold the wight, 

Which feares not, for thy loue, 
To fight with men and monstors both. 

As straight I shall it proue. 

WiSDOME. 

Well, doe so then ; 
The whiles I will depart. 

^ E$troy in the MS. 



88 the mariage of 

Wit. 

I thaink joxl, lady Wisdome, much ; 
Farewell, with all my hart. 

[Exit Wisdome. 

Wit calletA forth Ircksomnis. 

Well, once more haue at Ircksomnis. 

Com forth, thou monstor fell ! 
I hope yet now the second time 

Thy pride and force to quel. 

Enter Ircksomnis, sainff^ 

What I who is that that cales me forth I 

What, art thou yet aliue i 
If that I catch the once againe, 

Thou shalt no more reuiue ! 

Wit. 

Leaue of thy brages, and doe thy worst ; 
Thy words may not preuaile at first. 

Here thay fight a tohile^ and Ircksomnis mtist run in a- 
daresy and WiT shall foUawe^ taking his visor of his hed^ 
and shall bring it in tpon his swords^ saing, 

The Lord be thainked for his grace^ 

This monster is subduid, 
And I, which erst was wome with wo, 

Am now with ioy renued ! 
Well, now before that I vnto 

Dame Wisdomes house repare, 
I will vnto my father go. 

These newes for to declare. [Exit. 



WITT AND WISDOME. 39 



Cjfte Jj^eronH art €^t iiiU S^cma^ 

Enter Idlenis, halting ttith a stiU^ and shall cary a cloth 
rpon a stafe^ like a rat-^^cher, and say^ 

Haue yon any rats or mise, polecats or weasels ! 

Or is there any old sowes sick of the measels ? 

I can destroy fulmers and catch moles ; 

I haue ratsbaine, maidens, 

To spoil all the vermine that run in your holes. 

A ratcatcher, quoth you, 

This is a strainge occupation ; 

But euery where for Idlenis 

Thay make proclymation ; 

Thay say he shalbe hanged for cousining of Wit : 

But there is a towne cald Hopshort ; 

Thay haue me not yet ! 

I can goe hard by there noses and neuer 

be knowne, 
Like a ratcatcher, tell Serch be gone. 

Here he espieth Search coming in^ and goeth vp and 
doune, saying^ ^^hatie you any rats and misef*^ as in 
the first fivs lines. 

Search. 

Here is a moyling : they would haue a man 

Doe more then he is able : 
One were better to be hanged, 

Then to be a constable ! 
I haue searched for a knaue called Idlenis, 

But I canot find him for all my businis : 
The knaue the saye liaue cousind Wit, 

And shord him on the shelf. 



40 THE MABIAOE OP 



Idlenis. 

Yea, if you take not heade, 

He will goe nie to cousin yourselfe. 

Search. 

What, dost the knowe him, good fellow ? 
I pray the now tell. 

Idlenis. 

Doe I knowe ! why, I tell the 
I haue ratsbane to sell. 

Search. 

Batsbaine ! tut a pointe ! 

Dost thou know Idlenis ! tell me. 

Idlenis. 

Why, I tell the I knowe him 

As well as he knowes me : 
I ween he be a talle man. 

And I trowe he strutes. 
' And he be not a knaue, I wold he had 
A pound of ratsbaine in his guts. 

Search. 
Yea, but wheare is he i canst thou tell ? 

Idlenis. 
No, faith, not well. 

Search. 
Yea, but my thinks thou art lame. 



witt and wi8d0me. 41 

Idlknis. 

Yea, you may see such luck 

Haue thay which vse game. 

I haue bin at St. Quintins, 

Where I was twise kild ; 

I haue bin at Mnsselborow, 

At the Scottish feeld ; 

I haue bin in the land of greene ginger, 

And many a wheare. 
Where I haue bin shot through 

Both the buttocks. 
And an hargubushere : 

But now I am old. 
And haue nought myselfe to defend. 
And am faine to be a ratcatcher 

to mine end ! 

Heere shall Search take out apeece of paper and looke 

on it. 

Search. 

What shall I ^iue the 
To crie a proclimation ! 

Idlenis. 

For halfe a score pots of beare, 
I will crie it after the best fashion. 

Here shall Search reach a chare^ and Idlenis shall goe 

Tp and make the proclamation. 

Search. 

Come, gett vp heare ; you must 
say as I say. 



42 the mariage of 

Idlenis. 

HoYKf and jou §ay I am a knaue, 
Then must 1 ne^ds say nay. 

Search. 
First, crie oyes a good while. 

Idlenis. 
Very well. [He cries to Iwig. 

Search. 

Inought ! inought ! what, hast 
thou neuer done l 

Idlenis. 

What, didst not the bed me crie long I 
I haue not scarse begune ! 

Search. 
Goe to ; crie shorter, with a vengance. 

Idlenis. 
Oyes ! oyes ! oyes ! oyes ! \pery often. 

Search. 
What, I think thou art mad ! 

Idlenis. 

Why, would you not haue me doe 
as you bad ! 

Search. 
Why, canst thou keepe no meane \ 



witt and wisdome. 43 

Idlenis. 
Oyes ! [Here he shall orie well. 

Search. 

That is uery well said. 

Idlenis. 
Tliat is uery well said ! 

Search. 
What, I wine thou bist drunck to day ! 

Idlenis. 

Why, did you not bid me say as you 
did say? 

Search. 
Gome, say ^^ one the kings most royall maiestie.**" 

Idlenis. 

John King gaue a royall to lye with 
Margery. 

Search. 
Why, what said I ? 

Idlenis. 
Why, so. 

Search. 
I say " the Kings most Royall magistie." 

Idlenis. 
The Kings most Royall magistie ! 



44 the mariage of 

Search. 
" Dooth charge you, all his true people/^ 

Idlenis. 
What, it IB not so. 

Search. 

What! 

Idlenis. 

Why* you say there was a barge flew ouer a steeple ! 

Seahch. 
I say, ^^ doth charge all his true people.''^ 

Idlenis. 

O, doth charge all his true people ; 
that is another matter. 

Search. 

That they watch elswhere, 
And see in the towne. 

Idlenis. 

That euery patch that a man weares 
On his knee shall cost a crowne. 

Search. 

Why, what meanes that ! 

I spake no such word : 
'* That thay watch elswhere. 

And se in each towne."^ 

Idlenis. 
That they watch, &;c. 



witt and wisdome. 45 

Search. 

If that Idlenis by any meance 
thay can find. 

Idlenis. 
No, mary, you say not true. 

Search. 
What is that ? 

Idlenis. 

It is not for Idlenis that men 
sowe beanes in the wind. 

Search. 

If that Idlenis by any meance 

Thay can find. Pid him doume, 

Idlenis. 
If that Idlenis, &c. 

Search. 
Gome downe, with a pestilence ! 
Amorinridthe! 

Idlenis. 

Here is good thainks^ my masters. 
Come, giue me my fee. 

Search. 

Come, giue me vj. pence, 
And I will giue the viij. pence. 

Now shall Search rune away mth his mony^ and he shall 
cast away his stilt ^ and run after him. 



46 THE MARIAGE OF 

Enter Fancie. 

Like as the rowling stone we se 

Doth neaer gather mosse, 
And gold, with other metels mixt, 

Must neades be full of drose ; 
So likwise I, which commonly 

Dame Fancy haue to name, 
Amongest the wise am huted > much, 

And suffer mickle blame, 
Because that, waning heare and there, 

I neuer stid&st stand. 
Whereby the depth of learnings lore 

I cannot vnderstand ; 
But Wit perhaps will me imbrace. 

As I will Yse the matter ; 
For whie, I meane to counterfait. 

And smothly for to flatter, 
And say I am a messinger 

From Lady Wisdome sent. 
To se if that wil be a meane 

To bring him to my bent. 
But se where he doth come. 

Enter Wit. 
Wit. 

Like as the silly mariner,^ 

Amidst the waning * sea. 
Doth clime the top of mightie mast, 

Full oft both night and day ; 

> So in MS. for hated. ' Mamer m MS. 

» PFfliV, MS. 



WITT AND WI8D0ME. 47 

But yet at last, when Iiappily 

He come &om ship to shore, 
He seakes to saile againe as fresh 

As erst ho did before ; 
So likwise I, which haue escapte 

The brunts which I haue done, 
Am euen as fresh to venter now, 

As when I first be^ne ; 
A nue aduenture this I seek, 

Not hauing rune my race. 
But who is this whome I behold 

For to appeere in place ? 

Fancy. 

God saue you, gentell Mr. Wit, 
And send you good successo ! 

Wit. 

Faire Daime, I thaink you hartly, 

And wish in you no lesse. 
What, may one be bolde to aske 

Your name without offence i 

Fancy. 

Yea, sir, with good will that you may. 

And eke my whole pretence : 
My name is Fancy, and the cause 

Of this my coming now 
From lady Wisdome, is to showe 

A message vnto you. 

Wit. 

Then are ye welcome vnto me, 
For Lady Wiedomes sake. 



48 the mariage op 

Fancy. 

Here is the letter which she bad 
Me vnto you to take. 

Here he receueth the letter^ and readeth it to hmelfe. 

Wit. 

My ladyes will herein is this, 

That you should goe with me 
Vnto a place with her to meate, 

As here she doth decree. 

Fancy. 

Euen so, good sir, euen when you will 

I doe the same alowe ; 
Goe you before in at the dore, 

And I will follow you. 

Here Wit going in^ one shcUlpuU him by the arme^ 
whereupon he shall erg on this mcmner. 

Wit. 

Alas, I am betrayed ! 
This sight makes me agast ! 

Fancy. 

Nay, nay, no force, sir, 
I charge you him fast : 
Now, Wit, if that thou list 
To match thyselfe with me, 
Thou shalt be free as ere thou wast. 
And now released be. 

Wit. 

Alas, I am not so ; 

Dame Wisdome hath my hart. 



witt and wisdome. 49 

Fancy. 

Tlien slialt thou lye there still, 
I-wis vntell thou fealst the smart. 

[Ea^eunt. 



Enter Idlenis. 

This is a world to se how fortune chaungeth, 
This shalbe his luck which like me rangeth, 

and raingeth ; 
For the honour of Artrebradle, 
This age wold make me swere madly ! 
Giue me one peny or a luklfepeny. 
For a poore man that hath had 

great losse by sea, 
And is in great misery. 
God saue my good master, and my good dame, 

And all the householder ! 
1 pray you bestowe your almes of a poore man 

Nye starued with colde. 
Now I am a bould begger, 

I tell you, the stowtest of all my kin, 
For if nobody will come out, 

I will be so bolde to goe in ! 
Byrlady, here is nobody within. 

But the cat by the fier side : 
1 must neads go in ; whatsoeuer 

Come of it, I cannot abide. 

Hegoeth on^ and brincfeth out th£ porridge pot about his neck 

E 



60 THE MARIAGE OF 

A ! sirra, my masters, how saist thou, Hodge? 

What, art thou hungrie ? wilt thou eat my podge ? 

Now I prouide for a deare yeare, 

This wilbe good in Lent ; 

Well faire a good messe of pottage, 

When the herrings bo spent. 

A begger, quoth you, this yeare begines to fadge. 

If euer I be a gentellman, 

The pottage bot shalbe my badge ! 

Now I am in that takin, I dare not 

showe my hed ; 
And al be cossoning of Wit, 
I am fitine to beg my bred ! 
Well, my masters, fare you well, 
I may perhaps haue a chek, 
If the good wyfe come forth. 
And take the pottage pot aboute my neck. 



Enter Doll and Lob. 

Doll. 

O, the passion of God ! so I shalbe swinged ; 

So, my bones shalbe bangd ! 
The poredge pot is stolne : what. Lob, I say, 

Gome away, and be hangd ! 
What, Lob, I say, come away with a foule euill ! 

Lob. 

What a lobbing makest thou. 
With a twenty Douill ! 



WITT AND WISDOME. 51 



Doll. 



Thou hast keept a goodly eoile. 

Thou whorsone hobling John ! 
Thou keepst a tumbling of mo 

In the barne, tell the poredge pot is gon. 

Lob. 

Nay, thou tumblest doine thy selfe, 

And was almost beare ; 
Nay, I will tell my dame 

How thou wolest neades.... ' 

Doll. 

Thou lyest, whorsonne, thou wilt 
Be cudgeld, so thou wilt ! 

Lob. 

Nay, good Doll, say the * porridge were 
all spilt. 

He^ entreth Mother Bee, wiik a stick in her hand. 

Mother Bee. 

What, where be these whorecops ? 
I promis you ' keepe a goodly coyle ; 
I seme the hogs, I seeke heenes nest, 
I moile and toyle ! 
Thainks be to God, gentlewoman, 

Betwixt Jack and Jone, 
When I come into break&st, 

All the potage is gone ! 

* Omitted as at p. 27. 

' The the, MS. 

3 Fonyotr, MS. 

e2 



52 THE MARTA6E OF 

I pray ye, mistris, where is the potage 
Pot that is > hid away ? 

Doll. 

Whilest Lob was kissing me in the barne, 
A knaue stole it away. 

Mother Be. 

Yea, Gods bones ! one can scarce go to ....^ 

But my man and my maid 
Doe straight fall to kissing. 

Here she beateth them vp and doume the stage. 

Are yea billing? what, my man Lob, 

Is become a ioUy ruffler ; 
You are billing, you ! I must be faine 

To be a snuffler. 

Lob. 

O, dame, dame, if you will beate me no more, 

I will tell you a tale ; 
When I was at the towne. 

One called you whore. 

Mother Be. 

A, whorsonne ! thou callest me 

Whore by craft 5 

Thou art a Kentish man, I trow. 

Lob. 

Why, Doll will not mend my breech ; 
How wold you haue me goe ? 

' Is that, MS. 

> Omitted, as at p. 27. 



witt and wisdome. 58 

Doll. 

He lyes, Dame, he lyes ; he teares it 

Nether with plowing nor carting. 
For it is not so sone mended, 

But he teares it out with > 

Eiiter Inquisition, bringing in 
Idlenis, with thepotagepot abotU hii neck. 

Mother Be. 

Soft, who haue we heare ! 

I am as glad 
As one wold giue me a croune. 
What haue I spied t byrlady ! My 

porredge pot is come to towne. 

Inquisition. 

What, is this your pottage pot ? 
Doe you know it, if you se it ? 

Mother Be. 

Whether it be mine or no, 

He had it from my fier-side, 

He cannot deny it. [Eitit Mother Be. 

Lob. 

O, dame, dame, so I will girk him, if I 

had my whip. 
Sirra, Dol, we will accuse him of fellowship. 

• Idlenis. 

Lett me alone, and I will tell vou 
who stole your ogges ; 

' Omitted, ut supra. 



54 THE MARIAGE OF 

And, lokwise, who stole your 
coke with the yellow legges. 

Inquisition. 

Well, we will haue him to a justice : 
Dispach, come awaye ! 

Lob. 

Yea, and lett him be whipte 
Vp and downe the towne 
next markit day. [Goe out alt. 



Enter GtooD Nurture. 

To them whose shoulders doe supporte 

the charge of tender youth. 
One greefe Mes on anothers neck, 

And youth will haue his rueth ; 
Since first I gane to nurture Wit, 

Full many cares hath past. 
But when he had slained Ircksomuis, 

I thought me safe at last ; 
But now I se the very end 

Of that my late distresse. 
Is a begining vnto greefe, 

Which wilbe nothing lesse : 
For when I thought that Wit of late 

To Wisdomes house had gone. 
He came not there, but God knowes where 

This rctchlesse Witt is run. 
Ne knowe I where to seeke him now. 



WITT AND WISDOME. 55 

Whereby I learne with paiue 
There is no greefe so fere gone past, 
But may returno againe. 

Here Wit cryetA ottt in prison^ and sayeUi this. 

The silly bird once caught in net, 

If she ascape aliue, 
Will come no more so ny the snare, 

Her fredome to depriue ; 
But rather she will leaue her haunt. 

The which she vsed before 5 
But I, alas ! when steede is stolin, 

Doo shut the stable dore. 
For being often caught before, 

Yet could I not refraine ; 
More foolish then the witlis birde, 

I came to hand againe. 
Alas ! the chaines oppresse mo sore, 

Wherewith I now am lad, 
But yet the paine doth pinch me more, 

Wherein my hart is clad ! 
O, mightie Joue, now grant 

That some good man may passe this place, 
By whose good helpe I might be brougth 

Out of this wofuU case ! 

Good Nurtare. 

What noyse is this ? what petious plaint 

Are sounding in my eare ? 
My hart doth giue me it is Wit, 

The which I now do heare. 
I will drawe nere and see 

What wight art thou, [He comineth nere th^^ prison. 
Which doost lament 
And ilius dost pine in paine. 



56 the mariage of 

Wit. 

My name is Witt ; 

My greefe is greate, 
How should I then refraue I 

Good Nurtare. 

What, Wit, how earnest thou heare { 

God, what chaunce is this 'i 

Wit. 

Dame Fancy brought me in this case ; 

1 know I did amis. 

Good Nurture. 

What, Fancy i Where is she i 
Oh, that I once might catch her. 

Wit. 

Wold God you could, or else some one. 
That able weare to matche her ; 

But she no soner heard your voyce, 
There standing at the dore, 

Then she with all her folks hath fled, 
And will be seene no more : 

But I, poore sowle, ly here in chaines. 

Here efUreth and reletueth him Good Nurture. 

Once more I haue releast the of thy paines. 

Wit. 
Your most vnworthy schollard 
Giues to you immortall thainks. 



witt and w18d0me. 57 

Good Nurture. 

I pray you uow take better heed 

You play no more such pranckes ; 
Pluck vp your sperits, your inarige day 

Is come cuen at hand. 
Toinorow Wisdome shall you wed, 

I let you vnderstand. 

Wit. 

Ri^ht so as you think good, 
I shall contented be. 

Good Nurture. 

Then let vs goe for to prepare ; 

Come one, I say, with mc ! [ExeutU. 

Enter Idlenis like apreest. 

A, sirra, my masters, there is much adoe, 
When fortune is lowring ; 

the passion of God ! I haue escaped a scourmg. 
Here hath bin heaue and shoue, 

This geere is not fit ; 

In &ith, I haue lye in the lurch, 
For coussing of Witt : 
Now shall he be maried in all the haste ; 
When Wit and Wisdome is ioyned together, 
Then I am reiected. 
Well it I can shift elswhere. 
So Ions: as I am not detected. 
Detected I cannot welbe, 

1 am of that condition, 
That I cane tumo into all 



58 THE MARIAGE OF 

Goullers like the comniillion. 

Althought some doe refiise me, 

And some leden heeled 

Lubber will not refraine me. 

And when men hath done with mo, 

Women will retaine me ! 

Idlenis, the say, is the mother of Wise ; 

Through Idlenis fell the Troynes, 

And the Greekes wan the price. 

Idlenis breedeth euell thoughts, 

Whereof come il deeds : 

Idlenis is a cockadill, and greate mischefe breeds. 

I giue mvselfe a good reporte, 

My masters, you may think the best ; 

He that loueth me shall have smale 

ioy of his rest. 
King Amasis made a lawe, 
And bownd his subiectes to it fast. 
To giue an acount whereupon 
They lined the yeare last past ; 
And if any lined idlely, 
Without any regard, 
The punishmient was greuious 

Thay did him award : 
But now I can escape from all such perrill, 

And play the perueier 
Here in earth for the Deuell. 

Well, my masters, I must be gone, 
this marige to se ; 
Thay that list not to work. 

Let them follow me. [Exit, 



WITT AND WISDOME. o9 

Enter Seueritie and Wit. 

Seueritik. 

Well now, soone Witt, 

The proofe is plaine ; 
The cloudes were nere bo black. 
Bat the bri^htnis of the sone 

At last might put them back. 
The wind did neuer blowe so much. 

Where with the barke was tore, 
But that the wether was so calme 

To bring the ship to shore. 
The dainger now is past, 

Adresse thyselfe with speede 
To meete with Wisdome, thy deere wyfe, 

As we before decreede. 

Wit. 

It shalbe done as dutie binds. 

And as I bounden stand ; 
But se, good father, now behold, 

Dame Wisdome is at hand. 

Entare Good Nurture and Wisdome, and Wisdome 

and Wit singeth this song. 

Wisdome. 

My joye hath ouergrowen my greefe, 

My cure is past. 
For Fortune hath bin my relefo 

Now at last ! 



60 THE MARIAGE OF 

Tantara tara tantara, 

My husband is at hand ! 
His comly grace appeeres in place, 

As I doe vnderstand. 

Wit. 

My lady, thrise welcome to me, 

Mine onely ioy ! 
The gentellnis, God giue it the 

Without annoy. 
Tantara tara tantara, 
Welcome, my worthy wyfe ! 
Thou art my parte, thine is my hart. 
My blessed lim of life ! 

WiSDOME. 

As dutie doth bind according to kind, 

I thainke ye much ; 
Thy wife forthe will spend her life. 

She will not gruch. 
Tantara tara tantara, 

The summe of all my blisse ; 
The welcomest wight, my cheefe delight, 

That shalbe and thaHs. 

Wit. 

Let me thy comly corpes irabracc, 
Dere Wisdome, now. 

WiSDOME. 

Good Wit, I alwaies loued the place 

To be with you ; 
Tantara tara tantara, 

Thou liast my hart in hold. 



witt and wisdom e. 61 

Wit. 

Ne doe I faine, but tell the plane, 
I am thy owne, behold. 

Here indeih the Mng. 

Good Nurture. 

Well, now I am right glad 
To se you both well met. 

Seueritie. 

And so am I, with all my hart. 
That thay so sure are set. 

Both. 

Wo thaink yo both right humbly. 

Wit. 
And wish to mary speedyly. 

WiSDOME. 

For why, allthough the turtle long 
Ware parted from her mate. 

Wit. 

Now God be thainked, thay are met 

In good and happy state ; 
The Lord be thainked for his grace, 

Which gaue the vnto me : 
Then welcome nothing in heuen or earth, 

More welcommer can be. 

WiSDOME. 

And vou to me, dere Wit. 



62 the mariage of 

Seueritie. 

Come, now the time requires 

That we depjirte away 
To celebrate the nuptiales 

With joy, this wedding-day ! 

Wit. 

Groe you before, my father deare, 

And you, good master, straight. 
And then both I and Wisdome to 

Vpon you will awaite. 

[Goe forth all. 



WITT AND WISDOMR. 63 



Tlius haue you seene, good audience, 

And hurd the course of youth ; 
And who so list to try the same, 

Shall find it for a truth. 
And if this simple showe 

Hath happined for to halt, 
Your parden and your patience 

We craue in our default : 
For though the stile be rough, 

And phryses found vnfit. 
Yet may you say vpon the hed 

The very naile is hit ! 
Wherefore the morrell marke, 

For Finis lett it passe, 
And Wit may well and worthy 

Then vse it for a glasse, 
Whereby for to essue his foes 

That alwaies doe awaight him. 
And neuer haing vpon the buck. 

Where with thay seek to baitc him. 
Thus if you follow fast, 

[You] will be quite from thrall, 
[And] eke in joye an heuenly blisse ; 

The which Otoi graunt vs all ! 

Ame?iy quoth Fra: Merbury. 



dfinif^. 



NOTES. 



Page 3, line 1. Contract.] I should have added Mr. Larking*8 inter- 
pretation of this word, which is nearly defaced in the MS., is confirmed 
as far as possible by the portions of the letters still yisible. 

Page 3, line 7. Neuer before imprinted.] It is a question whether 
this MS. was copied from a printed book, or is in itself a copy prepared 
for the press. No printed edition of this play is known to be extant. 

Page 5, line 9. The.] So in MS. for that ? 

Page 5, line 16. Wei fauurt with leuitie.] This line is yery obscure 
in the MS., and I am afraid it is wrongly printed, but no one whom I 
have asked has been able to unravel the obscurity. Mr. Ck)llier, without 
seeing the original, conjectures " wel fraught with lenitie.** 

Page 6, line 10. That Wisdome] Is the wight f See page 8, line 22. 

Page 8, line 15, Te] Perhaps an error for he. I have followed 
the reading of the manuscript. 

Page 9, line 13. Thay.] An error for thou^ 

Page 10, line 10. Commest.] Comnest in MS. The original abounds 
in clerical errors of this description, which I have in many cases silently 
corrected, believing that a note in every instance would be considered 
quite unnecessary. 

Page 10, line 26. Al-to] Altogether, entirely, excessively. Pre- 
vious to the sixteenth century, the to was a prefix to the verb, conveying 
power, or deterioration. 

" Mervayle no whit, my heartes delight, my only knight and fere, 

Mercutious ysy hande had all- to frozen royne, 

And of thy goodness thou agayne hast warmed it with thyne.** 

Romeus and Juliet, ed. Collier, p. 14. 

F 



66 NOTES. 

Page 11, line 9. To.] That is, two. 

Page 12, line 11. Greare.] Matter; business. 

Page 12, line 14. The vice.] So much has been written on this 
character by Mr. Collier and other writers, that it may seem superfluous 
to say more than that the vice was the buffoon of the old moral plays 
which succeeded the Reformation. In the following very curious account 
of an interlude, written against the Roman Catholics at the close of 
Henry yin.*s reign, the Vice seems described in the character of Solace. 
It is taken from MS. Bibl. Reg., 7 C, xvi., fol. 169. 

The copie of the nootes of the interluyde. 

**In the firste entres come in Solaice, whose parte was but to make 
mery, sing ballettes with his fellowes, and drinke at the interluydes of 
the play, whoe shewede firste to all the audiaunce the playe that lie 
played, whiche was a generall thing, meanyng nothing in speciall to 
displeas noe man, prayng therfor noe man to be angre with the same. 
Nexte come in a king, whoe passed this throne, haying noe speche to 
thende of the playe, and thene to raitefie and approve, as in playne par- 
liament, all thinges doon by the reste of the players, whiche represented 
the three estes. Withe hym come his courtiours. Placebo, Rkthanke, 
and Flaterye, and suche a lik garde, one swering he was the lustieste, 
Btarkeste, best proporcioned, and moste valiaunte man that erer was ; 
another swear he was the beste with longe bowe, crosebowe, and cul- 
▼erein in the world ; another swear he was the beste juster and man of 
armes in the world, and soe furthe, during thair partes. Thenifter came 
a man armed in hames, withe a swerd drawen in his hande, a buflBh(^>e, 
a burges man, and Experience, clede like a doctour, whoe sete thaym all 
down on the deis under the king. After thayme come a poor man, whoe 
did goe upe and downe the scaffald, making a hevie complaynte that he 
was heryed throughe tlie courtiours taking his fewe in one place, and 
alsoe his tackes in another place, where throughe he hade scayled his 
house, his wif and childeren beggyng thaire brede, and soe of many 
thouBound in Scotlande, whiche wolde make the kynges grace lose of 
men if his grace stod neide, saying thaire was noe rcmedyc to be gotten^ 
for thoughe he wolde snyte to the kingcs grace, he was naither ac- 
quaynted with controuller nor treasourer, and withoute thaym, myght 
noe man gete noe godenes of the king ; and after he spered for the 



and wbene he was shewed to the man that was king ii 

annawcred and said he wua noe king, for tber ia but ont 
made oil sad goveroetbe all| wboe is etcmall, to whoi 
ertbelj' kinges ar but officers, of tbe whicbe tbay muste n 



67 

the playe, he 
King, whiche 
\e he and all 
ftk recknj-Dge, 

and son furthc, mucbe moor to that efiectc. And then he loked to the 
king, and saide he nas not the Kiug of Scollande, fur thcr was another 
k[ng in Scotlande, lliat hanged John Armt'strang with his feliowes, and 
Sym the Larde, and many other moe, which had pacified the countrey, 
and stanched thefle, but he had lefte one thing undon, whiche peiteynede 
as well to his charge a* tbayres. And wbene he waa aaked what that 
was, he made a longe oarraciou of the oppression of tbe poor, by the 
taking of the corsepresa unte beistes, and of the herying of poor men by 
condstorye hiwe, and of many other abussions of the spiritual! and 
churehe, withe many long stories and auotoritiea. Thene the Busshope 
roise and rebuked hym, saying it effered not to hyra to speake auche 
matiers, commaundiug hym seilence, or elles to suffer dethe for it hy 
thair lawe. Therafler roise the man of armes, alledginge the eontrarie, 
and coromaundcd the poor man to speake, saying thair abusion hade been 
over longe suffered withoute any lawes. Thene the poor man shewed 
the greale abusion of buBshoppes, prelettes, abbotes, reving menea wifes 
and doughters, and boldyng thaym, and of the mayntcynyng of thair 
childer, and of thair over hying of lordea and barrona eldeste sones to 
their doughters, wher thoroughe tbe nobilitie of the blode of the realmo 
was degenerate, and of the greate superfluous rentes that perteyned to 
the churehe by reason of over muche tentpondl laudes given to thaym, 
whiche thayo proved that the kinge might take boothe by the canon 
lawe, and civile lawe, and of the greate abomynable vices that reiugne in 
cloatnres, and of the eonmion bordelles that was kcped in clostures of 
nunneries. Ail this was provit by experience ; and also was shewed 
thoffice of a busshope, and producit the Newe Testament with the aucto- 
ritiea to that effecte,' and thene roise the man of armes, and the burges, 
and did saye that alt that was producit by the poor man, and Experience 
was reasonable of veritie, and of greate effecte, and vcrey expedient to lie 
reafourmede withe the consent of parliament; and the Busshope said he 
wold not consent therunto. The man of armes and burges saide thay 
were twoe, and be bot one, wherfor thair voice shuld have mooate effecte. 
f2 



68 



NOTES. 



Theiaftire the king in the playe ratiifled, approved and confermed all 
that was rebersed." 

Page 12, line 17. Wen.] Ween; think. 

Page 12, line 2S. I con eatc, &c.'] This tine ought to he printed, 
" I can cale tell I Bweate, and &c." 

Page 13, line 1. Lithe rlurdcn.] An old jocular term for idleiuaa. 
It CKCurs in Lydgale. 

Page 13, line 6. I wia.] That in, I know. In earlier worlta, tb>* 
would be the adverb t-wia. It is no doubt an error to consider the latter 
meant by writers of the aixteeutli century. 

Page 13, line 15. Harlowc-bery.] Most likely left to the player*, 
according to Uie place where the piece wob to be acted. 

Page 13, line 24. Coiiiiterfait crainke.] According to the canting 
dictionaries, a person who asks charity, and feigns sickness and disease. 
See Ear/e's Microcoamography , ed. 1811, p. 249. 

Page 13, line 29. Soil fier makes swet malt.] This proverb also 
occurs in Ralph Itoyater Doyslcr, ed. 1818, p. 1 1 ; Gucoigne'a Workeo, 
p. 3Ca 

Page 13, line 30. Fimie.] Reod/aiiap. 

Page 13, line 31. Broune stodie.] So Ben Jonson — 

■' Faith, this broan study suits not with your black. 
Your habit and your thoughts are of two colours." 

Joason, ed. Gifford, vol. vi., p. 878. 

Page 14, line 27. As gcntell, &c.] Compare Shakespeare — 
" Hist I Komeo, hist 1 O, for a falconer's voi«« 
To lure this tercel-gentle back again !" 

Collier's Shakespeare, vol. vi., p. 412. 

Page Id, line 21. Swinke.] Labour; work. 

Page 1G, Ime 1. And,] That is, if. And if is also often uted ia 
the same sense. See line 14. 

Page IG, line 16. A mother, Wit.] Read. " a mother-wit." 

" A graue discreet gentleman hauing a comely wife, whose beauty and 
free behauiour did draw her honesty Into suspition, by whom bee bad a 
Sonne almost at mans estate, of very dissolute and wanton carriage 
muse, said one, that a man of such stayd and moderate grauity 
bane a sonne of midi a contrary and froward disposition. Sir, reply' 



should ^^1 



NOTES. 69 

another, the reason is that his pate is stuffed with his Mothers wit, 
that there is no roome for any of his father*s wisedome : hesides, the 
lightnesse of her heeles is gotten into her sonnes hraines.** — Tayhr^s Wit 
and Mirth, 1630, p. 185. 

Page 17, line 4. Luck.] That is, look. 

Page 17, line 5. In the church hooke.] An allusion to the system 
of parish registers, which was a novelty in those days. 
Page 17, line 19. To witt.] That is, to know. 
Page 18, line 24. I.] Ay, or yes. 

Page 18, line 25. Bere all the charge.] Idleness of course means 
he will palm off his illegitimate child as Wit*s, and make the latter pay 
for its maintenance. 

Page 19, line 3. A kist.] That is, have kist A for have is still com- 
mon in the provinces, and is constantly so employed hy our old dramatists. 
Page 19, line 6. To desier you of more acquaintance.] That is, to 
be better acquainted. ** I shall desire you of more acquaintance, good 
Master Cobweb,** Midsummer Nighfs Dream, act iii., scene 1. 
Page 19, line 9. A ought.] Perhaps, in ought. 
Page 19, line 25. To the rop.] Meaning, to the gallows. 
Page 20, line 23. Colling.] That is, blacking. Hence is derived 
the term collier, Shakespeare has — 

** Swift as a shadow, short as any dream ; 
Brief as the lightning in the collied night.** 

Midsummer Night's Dream, act i., sc. i. 
Page 21, line 10. Doddy.] That is, a blockhead. 

** Thus by her scole 
Made hym a fole. 

And called hym dody pate; 
So from his thryfte 
She dyd hym Ijrfte, 
And therof creste the date.** 

Bake of Mayd Emlyn, p. 19. 
Page 21, line 17. Colliar.] Alluding to her having blackened the 
face of Wit. See above. 

Page 22, line 10. Home.] That is, whom. 

Page 22, line 11. Softe.] A common exclamation in old plays. It 
seems to have been introduced in the fifteenth century. 



70 NOTES. 

» 

Page 24, line 5. Rig.] WantOD, bod woman. 

Page 24^ line 10. Cog.] To play the cheat. 

Plage 24, line 11. Wethercoke of Poles.] Alluding to the weather- 
cock on St. Paul*8 cathedral. 

Page 24, line 14. The catt in the pane.] To turn the cat in the 
pan, i.e., to be a turncoat An old writer gives the following absurd 
origin of the phrase — ** Catipan^ to turn catipauy from a people called 
Cat^anlt in Calabria and Apulia, who got an ill name by reason of their 
perfidy ; very falsely by us called cat in pan,^* 

^ Our fine Phylosopher, our trimme learned elfe, 

Is gone to see as false a spie as himselfe. 

Damon smatters as well as he of craftie pilosophie, 

And can toume cat in the panne very pretily : 

But Carisophus hath given him such a mightie checke, 

As I thinke in the ende will breake his necke. 

Damon and Pithias^ p. 206. 

Page 24, line 16. The outlandish man.] Foreign physicians were 
much esteemed in England in Queen £lizabeth*s time. A character in 
the Return fjrom Parnassus, 1606, says, ** We'll gull the world that hath 
in estimation forraine phidtians.** This part of our interlude may fairly 
be considered an illustration of the character of Dr. Caius in the Merry 
Wives of Windsor. 

Page 25, line 7. Moyle.] Labour or drudge. 

Page 25, line 8. Coyle.] Noise ; tumult. ** Here*s a coil with a 
lord and his sister.** Amends for Ladies, p. 37. 

Page 25, line 12. Pilling and poling.] Robbing and plundering. 

Page 26, line 16. A cadowe.] That is, a jackdaw. '* Nodulus is 
also for a atddow^ or dawe.** WithaPs Dictionarie, 8vo., 1608, p. 87. 
The term is still in use in the Eastern counties. 

Page 27, line 14. Grod a mercy horse.] A slang expression, the 
exact force of which it is somewhat difficult to define. Its origin is 
attempted to be accounted for in Tarlton*8 Jests, p. 24. 

Page 27, line 27. Oculus.} In the MS. it is ovulus, which is of 
course an error. 

Page 28, line 2. John Tapsters.] The innkeeper's. 

Page 28, line 9. Commist.] Committed. 

Page 28, line 11. Euell gotten worse spent.] This proverb ocean 



NOTES. 71 

in an early MS. in the Museum, Harl. 2321, fol. 147, and is not yet 
obsolete. 

Page 29, line 23. This geer cottons.] That is, this matter or bunness 
goes on prosperously. 

** And all have their inscriptions — ^here's cock-a-hoop^ 
This The gear ccitens^ and this Faint heart never'* 

The Inner-Temple Masque^ p. 150. 
Page 30, line 2. Be Gis.] A profane oath. 
" By Gis, and by Saint Charity, 

Alack, and fie for shame ! 
Young men will do't, if they come to't ; 
By cock, they are to blame.** 

Hamlet, act iv., sc. 5, 
Page 30, line 30. Lin.] That is, cease. 

** Her husband, a recusant, often came 
To hear mass read, nor would he ever /m.** 

Billingsley's Brachy-Martyrologia, 1657, p. 200. 
Page 31, line 3. Crose.] A piece of money. 
Page 31, line 17. It.] That is, yet. 

Page 33, line 6. The whorson patch.] That is, fool. " Thou scurvy 
patch,** Tempest, act iii., sc. 2. 

Page 33, line 10. Thcaues.] Theaes in the manuscript. 
Page 33, line 24. This seucn yeer.] A common phrase of the time. 
It occurs in Much Ado about Nothing, act iii., sc. 3, **a vile thief this 
seven year.** See also King Lear, act iii., scene 4 : 2 Henry VI., act ii., 
scene 1. 

Page 34, line 6. Is.] Perhaps it should be it is. 
Page 34, line 14. A puttock] A kite. 

" O bless*d, that I might not ! I chose an eagle. 
And did avoid a pvttock.'' 

Cymbeline, act i., sc. 2. 
Page 35, line 15. Wite.] Wight, person. 
Page 35, line 21. No force] No matter. 

Page 35, line 25. To-to goo.] So in the original; but we should 
read to-to good, as the rhyme proves. The word too- too here, as in 
many other instances, denotes excessive or excessively, although the pro- 
vincial use of the term is said to be exceedinglv, a sense it also bears in 



72 NOTES. 

early nrilers. It is often DUthiiig more than a etreiigthening of the 
word loo. " Too-loo, used absolutely tor very well or good." Ray's 
Collection of English Worda, 12ino., London, 1674, p. 49. Shakespeare 
has the word in his Merry Wives of Windsor, act ii., sc. 2 — " I could 
drive her then from the ward of her purity, her reputation, her marriage 
vow, and a tliousand other her defences whicli now are too-too strongly 
embattled against nie." We here have Shakespeare using the lerm in 
the sense in which it is constantly employed hy onr early writera, both 
ae an ndjective and au adverh ; aiid in another place I endeavoured to 
show that this is the same uhich occurs in Ranilet, act i., k. 2, generally 
printed as two distinct words. Kir. Baverstock, however, complains of 
the " innovation." I have desired no innovation, further than warranted 
by the discovery of truth : for I merely wished to restore the text to its 
original purity as it carae from the bard's own hand, and I believe no 
argument of the nature of that employed by Mr. Itavcrstock can prevail 
against the enormous weight of philological evidence I have collecled, 
eonfirmed by ol/itr imlances in S/iokcsfieare's oten works, teherr 
Mr. Baverstock's reasomag would entirely fail. This is no " fresh 
idea" concerning Shakespeare. I hove stated distinctly, I leave the 
author's sense as I found it. All I contend for is, that too-too is essentially 
one word; that it is several limes so recognized by Shakespeare; and 
that no editor can be philologically justified in dividing it into two. 
" Oh ! that this too'loo solid flesh would melt," i.e., this excessive solid 
flesh, or too excessive solid flesh. Tlie whole line requires a slow recital, 
and there is nothing in my " innovation," when calmly cousideied, which 
detracts from the beauty or farce of the passage. 

Jlr. Bavcrstock evidently regards my discovery of the existence of 
loo-loo as an independent word in early writers one which had Iieen far 
better concealed, if it is to be applied to the passage in Ilamltfl. On Ibia 
point t will not enter into any dispnialion ; but the merit of the disco- 
very, whatever it may be, and I am not by any means disposed to rate it 
too-too highly, ia my own. I first made it public very early in 1843, in 
the notes to the Fu^t Sketches of King llcnrj' the Sixth, p. I!)6, and, 
let me add, without any ontentation. In 1845 appeared the aecond 
voliunc of \lr. Hunter's New Illustrations, and at p. 2\S I found the 
conclusions to which I had previously arrived inserted as new to " the 
whole body of nriten on English philology," without any allusian to i 



NOTES. 73 

ray fonner note. On a subject of such very small importance, it is un- 
necessary to offer any further comment. The following additional 
examples are recommended to the reader*s notice as fully confirmatory 
of the view I have taken on the meaning and force of the word too-too — 
There is another pride which I must touch, 
It is so bad, so base, so too-too much. 

Taylor's Superbia Flagellum^ p. 37. 
Her taile was too-too large for him to tread. 
He toO'too little her to ouer-spread. 

Scofs Philomythie, 1616, Sig. D. ii. 
That*8 all one, my fair, sweet, honey monarch ; for, I protest, the 
school-master is exceeding fantastical ; too-too vain ; too-too vain ; but 
we will put it, as they say, to fortuna delta guerra, I wish you the 
peace of mind, most royal couplement. 

Love^8 Labour's Lost^ act v. sc 2. 

This reign 

Is too-too unsupportable. 

Ben JonsoHf ed. Gifford^ vol. v. p. 89. 
He is dogged, but discreet. I cannot tell how sharpe, with a kind of 
Bwectncs; full of wit, yet too-too way^'ard. 

Lilly 8 Sixe Court Comedies^ cd. 1632, Sig. H. x. 
I awoke, and then I knew 
What love said was too-too true. 

HerrtcKs Works, vol. ii., p. 27. 
And yet there's too-too many I doe know, 
Whose hearts with this foule poyson over-flow. 

Wither's Abuses, p. 43. 
And therewith he is a great enemy to sinne and vice, whiche now 
raigneth too-too much amongst al estates and degrees. — Northbrooke's 
Treatise^ 1577. 

Both a light one and a Levite 
There I viewed ; too-too aged. 

Bamaby*s Journal. 
Nor washed in ocean, as from Rome he passed 
To Britain*8 ble ; too-too conspicuous there. 

Young* 8 Night Thoughts, p. 303. 



74 NOTES. 

FurthenDore, I have ben, 1117 girle, a lawkr to-ioo long, 
If at a pinche I cannot wrest the law from right to wrong. 

Historic of Promos and Cassandra, p. 37. 
O Leardy Learde, cham sicke : my belly akes too'too. 

Ibid. p. 56. 
Lycoris, to the gods thou art too dear, 
And too'too much of heaven belov'd I fear. 

Randolph's Poems^ 1643, p. 12. 
Tou guesse the meaning. Too-too well. 

Randolph's Jealous Lovers, p. 19. 

But here's a witnesse 

Of toO'too certain truth stands up against her. 

Randolph^ Ibid. p. 21. 
All I can find is losse ! O too-ioo wretched ! 

RandolplCs AmyntaSj ed. 1640, p. 82. 
Without the first the last may not be had ; 
Yet to the first the last is too-too bad. 

Ashmole's TheaU Chem^Brit. 1652, p. 335. 
She weeps and takes on too'too. 

The Coxcomby act iii., sc. 2. 
My brothers mind is base, and too-foo dull 
To mount where Philip lodgeth his affects. 

Troublesome Raigne of King John^ p. 230. 
Least bceing too- too forward in the cause. 
It may be blemish to my modestie. 

Ibid, p. 244. 
EschancrsTf to eat, as a canker, into ; also, to cut or make hollow, 
and halfe-round ; also, to pare very neere, nip off too'too neere. — Cot^ 
growls Dictionaries 1632. 

Too'too forgetful of thine own affairs, 
Why wilt thou betray thy son*s good hap ? 

Marlowe's Dido^ act v., sc 1. 
Aye, but hell come again ; he cannot go ; 
He loves me too-too well to serve me so. 

Ibid, act V. sc. 2. 
And toO'too well the fair vermilion knew. 

Hero and Leander^ p. 334. 



NOTES. 76 

The cold of wo hath quite untan*d my Toioe, 
And made it ioo-too harsh for list'ning ear. 

Return from Parnassus^ act v., so. 1. 
Tour father says, my state is too-too low. 

Wily BeguUedy ap. Hawkins^ p. 340. 
Hard-hearted gods, and too-too enyious fates. 
Thus to cut off my father*s fatal thread. 

Tragedy of Locrine, p. 10. 
Ay me, my virgin's hands are too-too weak 
To penetrate the bulwark of my breast 

Ibid. p. 56. 
And when too old to line, yet fiite drawee nigh. 
Our loue shall make vs too-too young to die. 

Porter's Madrigales, 1632. 
And albeit I cannot, being too-too much abused by some that haue 
beereft me of my notes in this behalfe, bring my purpose to passe. — 
Harrison's Description of Britaine^ p. 108. 

But of such writers as we haue too-too manie, so among the said rable 
Gcruase of Tilberie is not the least famous. — Ibid. p. 129. 

But, alas, their couetous minds one waie in inlarging their reuenues, 
and camall intent another, appeered herin too-too much. — Ibid. p. 193. 
And as these haue beene in times past erected for the benefit of the 
realme, so are they in many places too-too much abused. — Ibid. p. 202. 
But as most drouers are verie diligent to bring great store of these 
vnto those pls^ces ; so manie of them are too-too lewd in abusing such as 
buie them. — Ibid. p. 220. 

In suche moste greuous tyrannycall sorte, 
That to-to shamefull weare heere to reporte. 

British Bibliographer^ toL It., p. 205. 
Rome puffes us up, and makes us too-too fierce. 

Misfortunes of Arthur^ act ill., sc 1. 
They made much of themselves ; yea, too-too much. 

Ibid, act v., sc. !•• 
Then would I tell her she were too-too base, 
To doat thus on a banish*d, carelesss groom. 

Downfall of Robert, Earl of Huntingdon^ p. 31. 



76 NOTES. 

I do not lie ; you wot it too- too well, 

The deed was such as jou may shame to tell. 

Ibid. p. 39. 
Oh, Ely, thou to him wert too-too cruel ! 

Ibid. p. 45. 
Pray hold there ; I know it too-too well. 
The tokens and the letters I have still. 

A Woman is a Weathercock, p. 29. 
I know he loves me too-too heartily 
To he suspitious or to prove my truth. 

Amends for Ladies, act ii., sc. 2. 
But honest fear, bewitch*d with lust's foul charm. 
Doth too'too oft hetake him to retire, 
Beaten away hy brainsick rude desire. 

Rape of Lucrece, ap. Collier, p. 420. 
By toO'too much Dan Croesus caught his death. 
And bought with bloud the price of glittering gold ; 
By too-too litle many one lacks breath, 
And striues in streetes a mirroure to behold. 

Deuises of Sundrie Gentlemen, p. 357. 
If 80 thy wyfe be too-too fayre of &ce, 
It drawes one guest too manie to thyne inne. 

Ibid, p. 358. 
I loath the too-too easy field. 
Alike with her that nere will yield. 

R. Fletcher's Poems, p. 8- 
Page 87, line 6. Plaste.] Placed. 

Page 39, line 6. Fulmers.] Polecats. ** I might here intreat largelie 
of other vermine, as the polcat, the miniuer, the weasell, etote, fulmart, 
squirrill, fitchew, and such like.** — Harrison's Description of England^ 
p. 225. The term is still in use in the North of England. 
Page 39, line 23. Moyling.] Work ; bother. • 
Page 41, line 12. Hargubusherc.] A person who carried a harque- 
busB, an old^fiishioned musket. ^^ Espingardier, an harguebuxier, or 
small shot** — Cotgrave. 

Page 43, line 15. A royall.] Puns were frequently made by our 
old dramatists on the name of this com. 



NOTES. 77 

Page 45, line 18. A morin.] That is, a murrain. A similar oath 
occurs in Coriolanus, act i., sc. 5, 

Page 48, line 22. You him.] You hold him ? 
Page 49, line 24. Byrlady.] That is, by our lady I A common in- 
terjection in early plays. 

Page 50, line 2. Podge.] Porridge, or hodge-podge ; any miscel- 
laneous mixture of food. 

Page 50, line 7. Fadge.] To suit, or agree. 

Then John, and Joane, and Madge, 
Were call'd the merry crew : 
That with no drinke coxxldi fadge^ 
But where the fat they knew. 

Friar BakoiCs Prophesie, 1604, 
Page 50, line 21. Swinged.] Whipped; beaten. 
Page 50, line 27. Lobbing.] Tumult ; uproar. 
Page 50, line 28. With a twenty deuill.] 

Come in, wiffe, in twentye devilles waye ! 
Or elles stand their all day. 

Chester PlaySy vol. i., p. 53. 
Page 51, line 19. Whorecops.] Bastards. This term occurs in the 
Prompt. Parv., p. 246, spelt horcop ; and in Gesta Bomanorum, p. 432, 
the editor not having met with the term elsewhere. It is, however, 
sufficiently common. '* Horcop, pelinguus^^ Nominale MS. **The 
whorecop is plaguily well lov'd in our town," Peele's Works, vol. iii., 
p. 92, not understood by Mr. Dyce. See further examples in my Dic- 
tionary of Archaisms, in v. 

Page 52, line 12. Ruffler.] A rogue ; properly, one who pretends 
to be a maimed soldier or sailor. 

Page 52, line 14. Snuffler.] A highwayman, according to the 
canting dictionaries. 

Page 53, line 9. Sofl, who haue we heare.] A similar phrase 
occurs in Coriolanus, act i., sc. 1. 

Page 53, line 22. Girk.] Whip, or flog. The word is much more 
usually spelt y^^. 

Page 54, line 27. Retchlesse.] Reckless. A conunon form of the 
word in early writers. 



78 NOTES. 

Page 55, line 12. Doo shut the stable dore.] 

The steede was stollen before I shut the gate, 
The cates consumd before I smelt the feast. 

Denises of Sundrie Gentlemen^ p. 341. 
Page 55, line 28. Giue.] Tell, confess, or grant 
Page 58, line 17. Amasis.] A king of Egypt, who made a law that 
every one should yearly give account to the government how he lived, 
and in de&ult, to be put to death. 

Page 60, line 1. Tantara tara tantara.] A Latin song with this 
burden occurs in MS. Harl. 7371. 



earip 3Uus!trattonj( 



of 



^|)aikefiipeare 



anti 



%\^t Cttfilw!) Brarna 



EARLY ILLUSTRATIONS 

OF 

SHAKESPEARE AND THE DRAMA, 



The interlude printed for the first time in the preceding 
pages is so short, and the necessary illostrations by notes 
occupy so small a space, that it may not perhaps be considered 
out of place to add some new information respecting our early 
drama and Shakespeare ; the more especially as there are ob- 
jections to the publication of another text, which could not be 
considered an appropriate adjunct to the Bering Manuscript. 
In so doin^ we can scarcely be accused of following the plan of 
Heame'^s heterogeneous collections ; for, although the periods 
to which our fragments relate vary, they will in no instance be 
found inconsistent with what may naturally be looked for in 
any publication of the Shakespeare Society. 



SECTION I. Shakespeare's tempest. 

I have recently purchased an old chap-book, which I do not 
remember to have seen noticed elsewhere, and I think worthy 
of a brief description. It contains a prose story, apparently 
founded on the Tempest, although professing on the title-page 
to be translated &om the French. The title runs thus— 
" The Force of Nature ; or, the Loves of HippoUito and 

o 



82 Shakespeare's tempest. 

Dorinda, a romance, translated &om the French original, and 
never before printed in English," Northampton^ Printed by 
B. Raikes and W. Dicey ^ over against All Saints Chwrch^ 1720. 
Price three Pence. 12mo, pp. 29, inclusive of title, and last 
page blank. An extract from the commencement of it will 
suffice. 

The most Benowned History o/Prospero^ Duke of Milan. 

In the dukedom of Milan, there sometime reigned a most 
noble duke called Prospero, who had a brother, named Antonio, 
to whom he trusted the manage of his state ; he himself being 
for the most part wrapt up in secret studies — not in the least 
surmising that his brother would ever throw off the name, and 
chuse that of an usurper, for the sake of his dominions. But 
the fidse Antonio having obtained the craft of granting suits 
and of denying them, of advancing and deposing, and being 
prompted on by wild Ambition, wak'd in his soul an evil 
nature, and began to suppose himself the duke, because he 
executed the outward face of sovereignty ; and at last made 
that traiterous thought so natural to him, that he resolved it 
should be real : and to this end confederated with the Duke of 
Savoy, (who was an inveterate enemy to Prospero,) promising 
him tribute, and to do him homage, if he would constitute him 
Duke of Milan in the room of his brother : to which Savoy 
consenting, Antonio, in the dead of the night, (as they had 
secretly agreed,) openM to him the gates of Milan ; and hurryM 
the lawful duke to Savoy, and with him two young princesses, 
his daughters, the eldest named Miranda, and the youngest 
Dorinda, who were the dear pledges of their father's former 
love, and the pretty remembrancers to him of a lady, who in 
her life-time was all vertue ; as also an in&nt called Hippolito, 
the right heir to the dukedom of Mantua, whose &ther dying, 
bequeathe him (but three years old) to the care of Prospero, 
and who, by Antonio's cruelty, was exposed to the same &t6 
as that much-wronged duke. 



SHAKESPEAHES TEMPEHT. 



83 



When they arrlr'd at Savoy they were put aboard a vessel 
at Nissa. of which Gonzalo, a noblemaD of Savoy, was appointed 
master, who bore them out some leagues to sea, where there 
was a rotten carcase of a boat 'prepared for their receptioD, 
without either riggiug, tackle, sail, or mast. However, Gon- 
lalo, knowing the duke was an entire lover of his books, was 
so generous as to fiirnish !iim (but from his own library) with 
some books which he set a value on, as also some rich garments, 
which afterwards stood these royal exiles in good stead. Tliey 
had also a small quantity of food, and some fresh water. Aad 
thus they were left to the mercy of the waves, which proving 
greater than that of his unnatural brother, they were at length 
thrown on an island uninhabited save only by two brats, 
which Sicorax, a most damn'd witch, wlio bad been banished 
from Argier to that desolate place for manifold mischie& and 
sorceries, too terrible for human hearing, had titter'd there. 
These two freckled, bag-bom wretches were named, the male, 
Cahban, and the female, Sicorax. On this island was the 
noble duke and his innocent companions thrown. 

What shall Prospero do now ? He knows he ia upon en- 
chanted ground, and has no hopes of any succour from the 
two confounded and poisonous brats of this old deceased hag : 
he had magick sulHcient, however, to defend himself from their 
insults, and even to punish them for whatever affronts they 
should offer — for lie was a man of most occult study, and had 
penetrated into the very pith of sorcery ; yet, he thought it 
more advisable to endeavour to bring that accursM slave 
over to his service by fair and courteous means. So, 
having lodg'd hia two infant daughters in a cave which he 
himself had accommodated for them, and hous'd Hippolito in 
a rock at some distance from their cell, for a reason which you 
will hear in the sequel, he left thorn, and went in search of the 
monster, whom, having found, he us'd all gentle means to 
bring to his lure. He strok'd and made much of him, gave 
him to taste of some rich cordials which he had brought with 
c2 



84 SHAKEBPEARE'S TEMfEST. 

him, tan^ht liitn to name the sun and tlie moon, and by tEi 
means excited in that wretched creature a love towards him so 
that he shew'd liiui all the qualities of the Isle, as the fresli 
springs, fertile places, &c. And Prospero, to requite this gra- 
titude of the slave, took pains to make liini speak -^ for be&re 
this he was savage, and could only gabble — and to defend him 
from the inclemency of the weather, lodg'd him in his own cell ; 
till, on a time, this filthy slave, Prospero being absent, at- 
tempted to dishonour his two fair daughters, who were now 
grown to maturity, having been twelve years upon this desart 
!ale. But the duke returning before the brutal villain could 
accomplish his accursM intent, and, being inform'd of what 
Caliban had attempted, he, by the strong power of his art, 
pent him up in a rock, afflicting him with cramps and Bide^ 
stiches, causing the urchins to suck his blood, and the b«ea to 
sting him, and filPd liis bones with such aches that he would 
often roar so hideously that the very beasts trembled at the 
noise he made. Besides this, he deservedly made him his 
slave, to fetch wood, make fires, and serve in the most drudg- 
ing offices, still punishing him in the abovesaid manner, when- 
ever he neglected the least tittle of what he had commanded. 
Thus the monster not being contented with the happiness that 
he might have enjoy'd in a quiet subordination, was oblig'd to 
put up with 3 slavery which he could not avoid, as a pnuieh- 
ment he had justly deservM. 

The compiler of tJiis atory seems to have made use of Dry- 
den's alteration of the Tempest ; but still it is a curious fact 
to ascertain that, at a period which may be regarded as the 
dawn of our appreciation of tho poet's genius, a chap-book was 
founded on one of his plays, and no donbt sold by itinerant 
dealers throughout the country. 



k 



CURIOUS DRAMATIC MANUSCRIPT. 85 



SECTION II. CURIOUS DRAMATIC MANUSCRIPT. 

Understanding that fchere existed in the library of an an- 
cient &mily in the East of England an early MS. containing 
plays by Beaumont and Fletcher, I made further inquiries, 
and was favoured with a sight of the volume. It is of no 
great antiquity, but may furnish important readings, as it con- 
tains hitherto unknown copies of the following plays — 1, The 
Inconstant Lady, or, Better Late than Never ; 2, The Lovers^ 
Hospital ; 3, The Woman''s Prize ; 4, The Lost Ladie, a 
Tragi-Comedy ; 5, The Beggar'*s Bush 5 Hengist, King of 
Kent. The last one commences as follows ; — 

Ray, What Baynulph Munck of Chester can 
Raise from his Policronicron, 
That raised him, as works doe men, 
(To see liglit so long pailed with agen) 
That best may please this round faire ring 
With sparkleing iudgm** circled in 
Shall produce, if all my power[8] 
Can wyn the grace of too poore howres : 
Well apaide I goe to rest, 
Ancient storyes have bene best. 
Fashions that are now called new 
Have bene wome by more then yo^ j 
Elder times haue vsM y* same. 
Though these new ones get y* name. 
So in story whats now told 
That takes not part with days of old! 
Then to prove times mutuall glorye 
ioyue new times love to old times storye. EwU. 



86 THE MARRIAGE OF THE ARTS. 

SECTION III. THE MARRIAGE OF THE ARTS. 

Wood relates an anecdote concerning Holiday's play of 
Tcxi^oyofua, quoted in the Biog. Dramat., p. 356. The follow- 
ing collection of verses, which is taken from a MS. at Middle- 
hill, No. 9569, written in 1638, confirms Wood's anecdote, 
and well merits preservation. Holiday's play was printed 
in 1610, and was several times republished. 

Vene8 uppon C\hri«t'\ C[hurcK\ play^ made by Mr, HoUiday^ 
(usted before the King at Woodstocke. 

To hope, Holliday ! Why then 'twill nere be better. 

Why, all the guard, that never knew a letter 

But that uppon ther coates, whose witt consists 

In Archyes bobs and Grarretts sawcy jeasts. 

Deride our Christ-Church steaves, and sweare that they 

Never kept doore to such a midnight play. 

Why, Cambridge Dolman pitcht beyond it farre, 

It fell two barres short of "Albumazar." 

Besides, they feasted with an henne that night. 

Wherein the Lord Vicechancellor used ther might ; 

Now both ther gutts were empty, and ther eare 

Could nether caufe nor noyse of laughter heare. 

Our hobby horse came short of thers, but yet 

Wee did exoell them in one flash of witt. 

Wee had an ape, forsooth, bare three yeares old. 

Could doe more tricks then CoUe Westons could : 

A most fine ape, God is my rightfull judge ! 

An excellent ape, could leape and skipp and trudge, 

Lye still, or caper : O, prodigious bowtes, 

An active ape, and yet composed of clowtes ! 

Why, how now, sawcy groomes ? goe meddle with 

Your barre and holdberts, scowre your rusty teeth 

In the remainder of the last killd sceere. 

And wash your nasty throats in Woodstock beere. 



THE MAKRIAOE OF THE ARTS. 

Do you deride hie wortli ? Who darea uphold yee ! 

Be husht no more, and say a freod hath told yee ; 

Else hele in fury come, you naked stripp. 

And scourge you with a sixteeue knotted wbipp. 

Doe you not know that all this was begott ! 

I Bpeake my conscience wher it wad his lott 

To bee at truce with study, tliat this mirth 

At first edition was but five weekee birth — 

Yet not abortive. Sett an hijriier prize 

Uppon hia workes ; at least, let not your vioe 

Make an acute bad comment ; that which wee 

Object aa grosse was hia beat propertye. 

A poet's a creator, and 'tis more 

To make an ape, then teach one made before. 

This answered, thiuke you heard your captaiue eay 

Silence, or else you shall not eate to day. 

See, now they are gonne : but see, more anger yet, 

Thera one hath beggd monopolyes of witt j 

Fastidious briske the courtier : see, it grinneth ; 

It made a ballad, and it doth beginne with. 

It is not full yet a fortnight since 

Christ-Church at Woodstocke entertaiud the Prince, 

And 'vented hath a etudyed toy, (pray marke this !) 

Long as the siege of Troy, to please the Marquisse. 

Good sir, a word : for all your silke and satten. 

Yet may I safely aweare you know no Latiue. 

And will you talke, sir : none must judge his parts 

But such as are well skilld in all the arts. 

Nor is it fitt you jeast on him, sir, since 

He lately conquered a fierce Latme Prince. 

He hath a zealous sword ; if you he hearea, 

Be sure he'Ie cutt of your rebellious earea. 

Frisk to the Globe or Ourtaine with your trull. 

Or gather musty phi-ases trom the Bull. 

This wiis not for your diet ; he did bring 



;8 THE MARRIAGE OF TDE ARTS. 

What was prepared for our Platonicke king. 

Goe, court your mistresso, sir ; he's likewise gone. 

And I am left halfe angry hero alone — 

Glad that I have the poet so befrinded, 

Mad that such dull invention was commended. 

To such a sacred audience was his muso 

Wit-bound or tongue-tyed, that she did refuse 

To lend new mater, or else did ho deenie 

"Crambe bis coata" was of such esteenicJ 

What, though he say ther was great alteration. 

Yet was it all built on the old foundation : 

Nay, more, 'tis thought this secoud repetition 

Will plague the printers with a new edition. 

The title this : A pleasant Comedyo, 

Lately presented to bis Majestye, 

The prince, the marquisse, and the courtiers prudent. 

At Woodatockc mannor by a Christ-Church student. 

Would onto twere come to that I For then should w«» 

Be teared from a general! obloquye. 

For most men thinke, nor will they change the mind. 

That all the Uniueraity conjoynd 

In the performances, and without all doubt 

To countenance this toy was so given out. 

Nor at the court alone, (the more the pitty) 

Tis BO believed in village, towns, and citty. 

Nay, I have heard the rascall Batle Guard say, 

Schollers, runne home, study, and mend your play. 

Horrible thrutli ! Shall private weakenesse bee 

A slander to the Uuiversitye ! 

Give Cambridge such occasion as to mocke. 

And make poore Oxford a pure laughing stocke I 

0, fate of life ! and can 1 hold my peace, 

UrgM thus, and from revenge so jnsl thus tease 

Twere but the witt of justice now to rayle 

tJpponthe Poet; but 'twill nought avalle, 



THE MARRIAGE OF THE ARTS. 89 

And therefore out of mercye Tie be free 
To pitty, and give counsell without fee, 
The better to digest his new disgrace. 
(I would not haye him runne to such a place, 
Where it should be preferment to endure. 
To teach a schoole, or else to starve a cure.) 
A milder course is better : let him gett 
Gommendatorye verses, and entreat 
His worthy &end, juditious Mr. Lea, 
To write a Persian censure on his play. 

Against the Libeller. 

Thou that hast yet no name of thine owne. 
But dost hope by traducing of his to be knowne, 
Enjoye thy deare purchase, yet not without laughter. 
Bee thy name halfe-holiday ever hereafter ; 

For in learning and witt I would have yee beleive, 
Where this Holiday comes thou art but his slave. 

Anti'HoUiday. 

Bragg on, old Christ-Church, never frett nor greeve, 
But in thy practice let proud Wolsey live, 
Who never thought he well performed that thinge 
Was not about or else about the kinge. 
His fall and pride was Ego et Rex mens : 
Thine greater now when Rex is joynd with Deus. 
God nor the king seemd to approve that play. 
That made his sabbaoth lesse then Holliday. 

Answere. 

If I can judge a sicke man by his fitt. 
This poet hath more heresye then witt ; 
For if the last verse of the eighth bee true. 
What ere his countrye is, he is a Jew. 



90 THE MARRIAGE OF THE ARTS. 

Againe. 

I could forgive thy rimes, 

Did they condemne mee only and these times ; 
But how comes Wolsey in ? why doest thou laye 
My &ult to him ! he founded not my play. 
Nor doe in our Oxford, Wolsey say, 
When wee intend to rayle, but when we pray : 
And how comes Sunday in \ why dost thou spight 
God for my sake, and robb him of his right I 
The sabbaoth in thy throate better be dumbe. 
Then by thy phrase deny that Christ is come. 

In the person of Christ Church. 

Kvree at Woodstooke have not pleased those 
Whose clamorous judgment lyea in crying noes. 
Wee are not sorry, for such witts as they 
Libell our windowes oftner then our play : 
Or if wee have not pleased those whose lipps 
Preserve the knowledge of the Proctorshipps, 
And judge by houses as ther voices goe. 
Not caringe if the cause bee good or noe, 
Nor by desert or fortune they loose ther pawne, 
Wee are not greatly sorry ; 

But if any 
Can be found, out of the ingaged many. 
That daws speake hath ever when the head is by, 
Or whfire his seniors spowne is in the pye, 
Nor to commend the worthy will forbeare. 
Though he of Cambridge or of Christ-Church were, 
And not of his owne coUedge, and will shame 
To wrong the persons for his goods or name ; 
Yf any such be found, then downe, proud spirit. 
Yf not, know number never oonquerd meritt. 



THE MARRIAGE OF THE ARTS. 91 

[Atmcere.] 

When too much zeale doth fire devotion, 
Love is not love, but superstition : 
Even so in civill dutyes, when wee come, 
Too oft wee are not frends but troublesome ; 
But as the first is not idolatrye, 
So is the last but greived industrye ; 
And so mine, whose strife to humor you 
By overplus hath robbd you of your due. 

To thepuritane diqprayser. 

Tis not my person nor my play. 

But my simame Holliday, 

That doth ofiend thee : thy complaints 

Are not against mee, but the Saintes : 

So ill dost thou brooke my name, 

Because the Church doth like the same. 
A name more awfiill to the Puritane 
The[n] Talbot was to France, or Drake to Spaine. 

The fiddler of New CoUedge his descant an the play. 

At the " Marriage of the Arts *" before the king, 
Lest those brave mates should want an ofieringe. 
The king himselfe did ofier, what, I pray ! 
He ofierd twice or thrice to goe away. 

The anstcere. 

More trouble yet i His but an organist. 
Fidlers and fooles may prattle what they list. 
Yet wonder I the chanter would sufiiar him to play 
Such foolish jiggs uppon an Holliday. 

7%^ author's farwell. 

To find a man in companye 
Wer^ ventring at a lotteryo 



92 BASSE'S EPITAPH ON SHAKESPEARE.. 

Where fewer blancks goe to one prize 
Then here doe foules to one thaf^s wise : 
Why then al creditt have I throwne 
Where there are twenty casts to one, 
And that one too perhaps his Lord's, 
Whose Lord too speakes not his owne woixls. 
O, wretched state of poetrye ! 
Blew-coates are not more liverye 
With badges on St. George's day, 
Then are men's judgments at a play, 
Where you may know whose follower more 
By what he spake then what he wore. 
Why then &rwell, deare trifled Muse, 
Untill I heare some monstrous newes 
That men doe cease such to persever, 
And that I thinke is iarwell ever. 



SECTION IV. BASSE'S EPITAPH ON SHAKESPEARE. 

Most early copies of this celebrated epitaph vary conside- 
rably from each other. The present is taken from the Middle- 
hill MS., No. 9569, written about 1638. 

On Shakespeare. Basse. 

Benowned Spencer, lye a thought more nigh 
To learned Beaumont, and rare Beaumont lye 
A little neerer Chaucer, to make roome 
For Shakespeare in your threefold, fourefold tombe. 
To lodge all foure in one bed make a shift 
Untill Doomesday : for hardly will a fift 
Betwixt this day and that by fate be slaine, 
For whom the curtaine shall be drawne againe. 
But if precedency in death doth barre 
A fourth place in your sacred sepulcher, 



SUPPOSED POEMS B7 SHAKESPEARE. 93 

In an unearned marble of thine owne 
Lye, brave tragedian, Shakespeare, Ije alone ! 
Thy unmolested rest, unshared cave, 
Possesse as Lord, not Tenant, to thy grave ; 

That unto others it may counted bee 

Honour hereafter to be laid by thee. 



SECTION V. SUPPOSED POEMS BY SHAKESPEARE. 

From the same MS. as the preceding, and stated in the 
catalogue to be the genuine productions of Shakespeare. The 
signature seems to afford the sole ground for such a suppo- 
sition, but it may save trouble to a future inquirer to render 
them accessible. 

To a vcdentine. 

Faire valentine, since once your welcome hand 
Did call mee out, wrapt in a paper band, 
Vouchsafe the same hand still, to shew therebye 
That fortune did your will noe injurye. 
What though a knife I give, your beautyes charme 
Will keepe the edge in awe for doing harme : 
Wooll deads the sternest blade, and will not such 
A weake edge tume, meeting a softer touch ! 

W. S. 

On a butcher marrying a tanner'*8 daughter, 

A fitter match hath never bin : 
The flesh is married to the skin. 

W. S. 



TRINCULO S STBANCiE F18H. 



I 



SECTION VI. TBINCULO S STRANGE PISK, ILLUSTRATED BY AN J 
EARLY BALLAD IN THE ASHMOLEAK MUSEL'M AT OXFORD. 

Trineulo's first meeting with Caliban, and liia commentariea 
on ttie dubiuiis appearance of that singular character, vaa pro- 
bably a scene that was relished considerably by the audience 
whou the Tempuat was first produced. Among the many 
pieces of contemporary satire with which Shake.^pcare adapted 
his plays to his auditors, although it must be acknowledged 
that he has often geuerahaed thorn sufficiently to preserve their 
effect to most ages, this speech of Trinculo must now have lost 
much of its point. Strange fisheci, perhaps, are not so much a 
matter of astonishment for the "abject vulgar" now-a-days, 
setting aside the equivotjue unavoidably produced by the 
modern application of the term to our own race ; and living 
specimens from the wilds of America have taken the place of 
Trinculo's " dead Indian." The reader or spectator smiles at 
the conjectures of Trinculo ; but, without a commentary, he 
would hardly detect the particular satire. There can, how- 
ever, be little doubt that Shakespeare here intended an allusion 
to the practice of showing litsus nalarw for the benefit of tlie 
" holiday fools j" and it may be that the strange fish and dead 
Indian refer to some particular exhibitions that were popular 
about the time the Tempest was written. 

However this may be, no one has yet produced any docu- 
ments that bear sufficiently on the subject to entitle them to 
bo received as autliorities in the disputed question concerning 
the chronology of this play. Mr. Chalmers's dead Indian is a 
matter of mere conjecture as regards its connection with the 
one reforrod to by Trinculo; and Mr. Hunter's is of so early 
a date ' that it can scarcely be applicable, I am not prepared 
to produce more decisive evidence, but the following early 
ballad, which is copied from one in black-letter in Anthoiiy 
' Disquisition on the Tempest, p. 102. 



Lthony ^^H 



TRINCULO'S STRANGE FISH. 95 

Wood'^s collection in the Ashmolean Museum, marked No. 401, 
seems so good an illustration of Trinculo'^s remarks on the 
curiosity excited in England upon the appearance of a *^ strange 
fish,"" that it may perhaps be considered worthy of a place in 
this miscellany. 

A description of a strange and miracukms Jishy ccut upon the 
sands in the meads^ in the hundred of Woncelly in the county 
Palatine of Chester^ or Chesheire. The certainty whereof is 
here related concerning the said most monstrous fish. To the 
tune of Bragandary. 

Of many marvels in my time 

IVe heretofore, 
But here's a stranger now in prime 

That'*s lately como on shore, 
Invites my pen to specifie 
What some (I doubt) will think a lie ; 

O rare, 

beyond compare, 
In England nere the like. 

It is a fish, a monstrous fish ! 

A fish that many dreads, 
But now it is, as we would wish. 

Cast up oHh sands iHh meads, 
In Chesshire ; and tis certaine true. 
Described by those who did it view ; 

rare, 

beyond compare. 

In England nere the like. 

Full twenty one yards and one foot 

This fish extends in length, 
With all things correspondent tooH, 

For amplitude and strength : 



96 TRINCULO'S STRANGE FISH. 

Good people, what 1 shall report 
Doe not account it fained sport ; 

rare, 

beyond compare, 
In England nere the like. 

It is almost five yards in height. 

Which is a wondrous thing ; 
mark, what marvels to our sight 

Our potent Lord can bring ! 
These secrets Neptune closely keeps 
Within the bosome of the deeps. 

O rare, 

beyond compare, 
In England nere the like. 

His lower jaw-bone'*s five yards long, 

The upper thrice so much. 
Twelve yoak of oxen stout and strong, 

The weight of it is such, 
Gould not once stir it out o'^th sands ; 
Thus works the All-creating hands ! 

O rare, 

beyond compare. 
In England nere the like. 

Some have a project now in hand. 

Which is a tedious taske, 
When the sea tumes, to bring to land 

The same with empty cask : 
But how I cannot well conceive. 
To each man'*s judgement that I leave. 

O rare, 

beyond compare, 
In England nere the like. 



TRINCULO'S STRANGE FISH. 97 

The lower jaw-bone nam'd of late, 

Hath teeth in'*t thirty foure, 
Whereof some of them are in weight 

Two pounds or rather more : 
There were no teeth iHh upper jaw, 
But holes, which many people saw. 

O rare, 

beyond compare, 
In England nere the like. 

The second party to the same tune. 

His is in length foure yards, 

Big as a man iHh wast. 
This monster he who well regards. 

From th' first unto the last, 
By every part may motives find. 
To wonder at this wondrous kind. 

rare, &c. 

The ton^e on'^t is so mighty large, 

1 will it not expresse. 

Lest I your credit over-charge. 

But you may easily guesse. 
That sith his shape so far excels. 
The tongue doth answer all parts else. 

O rare, &c. 

A man on horseback, as ''tis try'^d. 

May stand within his mouth : 
Let none that hears it this deride. 

For tis confirmM for truth, , 
By those who dare avouch the same ; 
Then let the writer beare no blame. 

O rare, &c. 

H 



98 TRINCULO'S STRANGE FISH. 

His nervee or sinewee like Bulls . • . ., 
For riding rods some use, 

0^ spermaceti there'^s some vessels ; 
If this be the worst newes, 

That of this monster we shall heare, 

All will be well I doe not feare. 
O rare, &c. 

Already sixteene tuns of oyle 
Is from this fish extracted, 

And yet continually they boyle. 
No season is protracted : 

It cannot bo imacrin'^d how much 

'Twill yeeld, the vastnesse on''t is such. 
O rare, &;c. 

When he upon the sands was cast 
AUve, which was awhile. 

He yellM so loud, that many (agast) 
Heard him aboue sixe mile ; 

Tis said the female fish likewise 

Was heard to moume with horrid cryes. 
O rare, &c. 

The mariners of Chester say 

A herring-hog tis namM : 
What ere it be, for certaine they 

That are for knowledge famM, 
Affirme, the Uke in ages past 
Upon our coast was never cast. 

O rare, 

beyond compare, 
In England nere the like. 



PROLOGUE AND EPILOGUE TO RICHARD III. 99 

There is no date to this ballad, but it bears the initials 
M. P., probably Martin Parker, a well-known ballad-writer in 
the first half of the seventeenth century. It was " printed at 
London for Thomas Lambert, at the sign of the Hors-shoo in 
Smithfield,'^ and we are fiirther informed, " There is a book to 
satisfie such as desire a larger description hereof 

Malone has given the following extract from the MS. office- 
book of Sir Henry Herbert, '^ A license to James Seale to 
shew a strange fish for half a yeare, the 3rd of September, 
1632 '^ and in Maine^'s comedy of the City Match, one of the 
characters is introduced, '^ hanging out the picture of a itrange 
fishr It may, therefore, have been a popular kind of exhi- 
bition in Shakespeare'*s time. 



SECTION VII. HEYWOOD'S PROLOGUE AND EPILOGUE TO 
SHAKESPEARE'S PLAY OF RICHARD III. 

[From Heywood'*s Pleasant Dialogves, 12mo., 1637, p. 247.] 

A young witty lad playing the part of Richard the third at the 
Bed Bull, the author, because hee teas interested in the Play^ 
to incourage him, wrote him this Prologue and Epilogue. 

The boy the speaker. 

If any wonder by what magick charme 
Richard the third is shrunke up like his arme : 
And where in fulnesse you expected him. 
You see me onely crawling like a limme • 
Or piece of that knowne fabrick, and no more, 
(When he so often hath beene viewM before.) 

Let all such know : a rundlet ne^er so small. 
Is call'd a vessell, being a tunne, that's all. 

h2 



100 PROLOGUE AND EPILOGUE TO RICHARD III. 

Hee'*8 tearm'd a man that showes a dwarfish thing, 

No more's the guard or porter to the king. 

So pictures in small compasse I have seene, 

Drawne to the life, as neare as those have beene 

Ten times their bignesse : Christenmas loaves are bread, 

So'*s your least manchet : have you never read 
Large folio sheets which printers overlooke. 
And cast in small to make a pocket booke ! 
So Richard is transform^ : if this disguise 
Show me so small a letter for your eyes. 
You cannot in this letter read me plaine, 
Hee'*l next appeare in texted hand againe. 

The Epilogue. 

Great I confesse your patience hath now beene, 
To see a little Richard : who can win 
Or praise, or credit ? eye, or thinke to excell 
By doing after what was done so well ? 
It was not my ambition to compare 
No envie or detraction : such things are 
In men of more growne livers, greater spleene, 
But in such lads as I am seldome seene. 
I doe, but like a child, who sees one swim, 
And (glad to leame) will venter after him. 
Though he be soundly duckt forH ; or, to tell 
My mind more plainely, one that faine would spell 
In hope to read more perfect : all the gaines 
I expect for these unprofitable paines, 
Is, that you would at parting from this place 
Doe but unto my littlenesse that grace 
To spie my worth, as I have seene dimme eyes 
To looke through spectacles or perspectives. 
That in your gracious view I may appeare 
Of small, more great ; of coming far off, neare. 



THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 101 



SECTION VIII. THREE CURIOUS BALLADS FROM AN EARLY 
MANUSCRIPT IN THE ASHMOLEAN MUSEUM AT OXFORD; 
INCLUDING ONE ON TROILUS AND CRESSIDA, HITHERTO UN- 
KNOWN TO THE EDITORS OF SHAKESPEARE. 

The constancy of Troilus was by no means an unusual sub- 
ject for allusion in Elizabethan writers, and indeed was often 
adduced as an example for a lover^s fidelity. But the com- 
mentators have recovered no proof that the tale was introduced 
into the ballad literature of Shakespeare'^s time, with the ex- 
ception of an entry on the books of the Stationers'* Company, 
in 1581, of " A proper ballad, dialogue-wise, between Troilus 
and Cressida."' To this entry may be added another, in 1665, 
of " A ballet intituled the History of Troilus, whose troth had 
well been tryed."*'* I have the satisfaction of oflFering the 
members of the Shakespeare Society a copy of another contem- 
porary ballad on the same subject, which is the first that has 
yet been discovered ; the two ballads just mentioned not being 
at present known to exist. It occurs in a MS. collection of 
early poetry in the Ashmolean Museum, written probably at 
various times, but certainly formed entirely in the latter half 
of the sixteenth century, and is the same volume from which 
Hearne printed the early copy of Chevy Chase. Other ex- 
tracts from this MS. will also be found in the British Biblio- 
grapher, iv., 107, &c. 

The perusal of the following ballad will, I think, recall to 
the reader'^s recollection the scenes between Troilus and Cressida 
in Shakespeare^'s play, act iii., sc. 2, and act iv., sc. 2 ; but it 
will be observed that it implies a somewhat different tale at 
the commencement. In the play we miss the scorn that the 
ballad imputes to Troilus for all " that longeth to merry game ;" 
the latter word being of course employed in the same sense in 

* See Warton's History of English Poetry, ed. 1840., iii., 337. 



102 THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 

which it is so frequently found in our early metrical romances. 
It would be an idle question to pursue the inquiry whether 
Shakespeare had seen the present ballad. His obvious obli- 
gations to Chaucer render any opinion of the kind unnecessary ; 
but still it illustrates very curiously the popularity of the sub- 
ject, and must be considered an interesting addition to the 
criticisms on that play. 

Two other pieces in the same volume appeared so carious 
and interesting, that I have taken the opportunity of adding 
them to the Shakesperian ballad. One is an unknown pro- 
duction by Elderton, which was entered without his name on 
the Stationers^ Registers in 1670, licensed to WylUam Peke- 
rynge as -^a ballet intituled Lenton StuSe/'' It describes 
the articles sold in the time of Lent, with punning observa- 
tions upon them. The other is the supposed effusion of a 
clown consoling himself on his mistress becoming the vicar'^s 
wife, which is a truly curious specimen of that class of compo- 
sitions. A fragment of this latter ballad is written on the 
margin of a much earlier MS. in the Public Library at Cam- 
bridge, marked Ff. ii., 38. 

I. 

[From the MS. Ashmole 48, fol. 120.] 

To tAe tune of Fayne woold Ifynd mm pretty thynge to geete 
unto my lady. 

When Troylus dwelt in Troy towne, 

A man of nobell fame-a. 
He schemed all that loved the lyne 

That longd to merry game-a. 

He thawght his hart so overthwart. 

His wysdom was so suer-a. 
That nature could not frame by art 

A bewty hym to lure-a. 



THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 103 

Tyll at the last he cam to churche, 

Where Oresayd sat and prayed-a ; 
Whose lookes gave Troylus suche a lurche, 

Hys hart was all dysmayde-a ! 

And beynge vrrap in bewtyse bands, 

In thorny thawghts dyd wander ; 
Desyrynge help, of hys extreemes, 

Of her dere unkell Pandare. 

When Pandar dyd perceve the payne 

That Troylus dyd endure-a, 
He fownde the mene to lurch agayne 

The hart with Troylus lured. 

And to hys neece he dyd commend 

The state of Troylus then-a ; 
Wyll yow kyll Troylus ? God defend ! 

He ys a nobell man-a. 

With that went Troylus to the fyld. 

With many a lusty thwake-a, 
With bluddy steede and battred sheeld, 

To put the Grecians bak-a. 

And whyle that Cressyd dyd remayne, 

And sat in Pandares place-a, 
Poore Troylus spared for no rayne, 

To wyn hys ladyse grace-a. 

Yet boldly thowgh he cowld the waye 

The spere and sheeld to breke-a. 
When he came where hys lady lay, 

He had no power to speke-a. 



104 THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 

But humbly kneelynge on hys knee. 
With syghes dyd love unfolde-a ; 

Her nyght-gowne then delyvered she. 
To keepe hym from the colde-a. 

For.shame^ quoth Pandar to hys neece, 

I spek yt for no harme-a ; 
Of y ower good bed spare hym a peece. 

To keepe hys body warme-a. 

With that went Troylus to her bed, 
With tremblynge foote, God wot-a ! 

I not remembrynge what the dyd. 
To fynysh love or not-a. 

Then Pandare, lyke a wyly pye. 
That cowld the matter handell, 

Stept to the tabell by and by, 
And forthe he blewe the candell. 

Then Cresayd she began to scryke, 
And Pandare gan to brawle-a ; 

Why, neece, I never sawe yower lyke, 
Wyll yow now shame us all-a ? 

Away went Pandare by and by, 
Tyll momynge came a^yne-a ; 

Gt)d day, my neece, quoth Pandare, je ! 
But Cressyd smyled then-a. 

In &ythe, old unkell, then quoth she, 
Yow are a frend to trust-a ? 

Then Troylus lawghed, and wat yow why ? 
For he had what he lust-a. 



THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 105 

Allthowghe there love began so coye, 

As lovers can yt make-a ; 
The harder won the greter joy, 

And so I dyd awake-a ! 



II. 

[From the same MS., fol. 115.J 

A newe ballad entyttded Lenton Stuffs 
For a lyttell munny ye maye hate inowghe. 

To the tune of the Crampe. 

Lenton Stuff ys cum to the towne, 
The clensynge weeke cums quicklye ; 

Yow knowe well inowghe yow must kneele downe. 
Cum on, take asshes trykly. 

That nether are good fleshe nor fyshe. 

But dyp with Judas in the dyshe. 

And keepe a rowte not worthe a ryshe. 

Herrynge, herrynge, whyte and red ! 

Seeke owt suche as be rotten ; 
Thowghe sum be hanged and sum be dede. 

And sum be yet forgotten, 
The tyme wyll tam the displynge rod, 
Thowghe idoUs dum make many od, 
Wyll fyrk owt som that feare not God. 

Walflet oysters, salt and greene. 

Are trym metes to be eaten ; 
Trusty subjects to there queene, 

Neede never to be beten ; 
And a sallet sure as God exceedes. 
And must procure dysgestion needes, 
That's pyct so pure yt hathe no weedes. 



106 THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 

Lylly whyte maskells have no peere, 

The fyshewyves fetche them quyklye 5 
So he that hathe a consciens cleere, 

May stand to hys takkell tryklye. 
But he that seekest to set to sale, 
Suche baggage as ys olde and stale, 
He ys lyke to tell another tale. 

Newe place, newe at every tyde, 

Thys ys the common cravynge 5 
In every place let them be tryde, 

That are of yll behavynge. 
For suche as of beyond say smell, 
The cam to far to savor well, 
As I here the common people tell. 

Carp ys cownted verry good, 

A trym fyshe and a dayntye ; 
But yf yt smell out of the mud. 

Whole geeve a grawte for twenty ? 
So suche as carp at every thynge, 
Whereof no good accord doethe sprynge, 
To the carren crowes there carkas flynge. 

Ooodgyuns make a goodly dyshe, 
For suche chees as be syklye ; 
And as yt jns a foolyshe fyshe, 
And wyll be taken quyklye, 
So many a goodgyn nowadayse 
Is cawght and coseynd sundry wayse, 
To make a foole at all assayse. 

And as thys Lent tyme, many seekes 
For yerbs and sallots dayntye, 



THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 107 

I never in my lyf saw lyekes, 
In every place so plentye ; 
For every man lykea what he last, 
And as he lykes he puts hys trust, 
So fewe or non belyke be just. 

Of nettells lykwyse there be store, 

In sallets at thys season ; 
For men be nettled more and more 

With palltryse passynge reson 5 

And simi uppon a nettell , 

That see not where the nettell ys, 
And many a on fynds &ult at thys. 

Fygs, thowghe fewe com owt of Spayne, 

Thys Lent tyme are grete plentye j 
There ys suche discord and dysdayne. 

That fygs can not be deynty. 
For a fyg for yow, saythe John to Jone ; 
And a fyg for thee, saythe man to man ; 
And a fyg for yowe all, do. what you can. 

Reasons gret and reasons small, 

Undoubted a grete meanye. 
Have byn thys Lent at Westminster Hall, 

And sold for many a penny ; 
And nowe to London be the cum. 
To the Burs, I thynk, to talk with sum, 
For deynty mouthes wyll not be domme. 

Pepper ys come to a marvelus pryce, 

Som say, thys Lenton season ; 
And every body that ys wyse 

May soone perceve the reson : 



108 THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 

For every man takes pepper i" the nose 
For the waggynge of a strawe, God knowse, 
With every waverynge wynd that blowese. 

With mace I mene to make an end, 

For after pepper lyghtly, 
The maces many men do send, 

That glj'ster fayre and bryghtlye ; 
And he that meetethe with that mace, 
Is sure to have a restynge place, 
Tyll the law and he have try^e the case. 

Then Jake h Lent comes justlynge in 

With the hedpeece of a herynge ; 
And saythe, repent y owe of yower sy n, 

For shame, syrs, leve yower swerynge ; 
And to Palme Sonday doethe he ryde, 
With sprots and herryngs by hys syde, 
And makes an end of Lenton tyde ! 

Finis quothe W. Elderton. 



III. 

[From the same manuscript, fol. 137.] 

Adew I my pretty pussy, 
Yow pynche me verry nere ; 

Yowre soden parture thus, 

Hathe chawnged muche my chere ! 

But turn agayne and bas me. 

For yf that yow pas me, 

A better grownd shall gras me 
Untyll another yere ! 



THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 109 

Thowghe yow make yt daynty, 
Wemen wyll be plenty ; 
When won man shall have twenty, 
There wyll be bown8yns;e chere. 

Prynce Arthure cums agayne, syr, 

So tellethe me myne host ; 
Dick Swashe keepes Salesbury plane, syr. 

And schowrethe styll the cost ; 
But Jayne wyll jest no more, syr, 
Tyb was borde before, 
Kate she keepes the schore, syr, 

And schores yt on the post. 
Talk of other knaks, syr, 
Fyll no empty saks, syr. 
Put no fyre to flax, syr. 

Lest all yowre gaynes be lost ! 

The market wyll be mard, syr, 

Yf com and cattell faule ; 
The syt but at reward, syr. 

That sarwen in slovens haull. 
Put pres amunghst the best, syr. 
Smell owt every fest, syr, 
Shrynke not for a jest, syr. 

Stand up and tak no fawle. 
For he that fumes and frets, syr, 
Syldom payse hys dets, syr ; 
Smaule gaynes myne ostys gets, syr. 

When cards are cownted all. 

My pretty wenche dothe smyle, syr. 

To here me tell thys tale ; 
I wowld ryde many a myle, syr. 

To oF"^ •Hebe • mile : 



110 THREE CURIOUS BALLADS. 

For sche can syt asyde, syr, 
Lyke a vyckars bryde, syr, 
With all her poynts untyde, syr, 

When she hathe in her ale : 
But when she cums in place, syr. 
Then she hydes her &ce, syr, 
Thys ys all her grace, syr. 

When her ale she sets to sell. 

The peopell talk and prate, syr. 

Of pus and her short lyff : 
And of her roariage late, syr, 

Men say there ys grete stryff. 
But the gyrld ys gon, syr. 
With a chokynge bon, syr. 
For she hathe got Syr John, syr. 

And ys ower vyckars wyff : 
This ys no les indeede, syr, 
Then holy churche dothe breede j 
Suche serves a turn at neede, syr, 

To whet a blunted knyff. 

Syns pus wyll part from me, syr. 

And do me thus muche wrong^, 
Chyll have as good as she, syr. 

Before that yt be longe. 
Pus ys not contented. 
Full oft she hath repented 
That ever she consented. 

And thynks she hathe gret wronge 
But cowrtyers can not carve. 
Except the tyme dothe serve, syr, 
Thowghe thys be overthwart, syr, 

Biemember me amunge ! 

Finis. 



FORM AN ON SHAKESPEARE'S PLAYS. Ill 



SECTION IX. FORMAN ON SHAKESPEARE'S PLAYS. 

It is a singular circumstance that the following notices of 
four plays should be the only records of Forman's attachment 
to theatrical amusements, and that three out of those four 
should relate to the compositions of Shakespeare. The plot of 
Bichard II., as described by Forman, entirely differs from 
that of Shakespeare's play under the same title, but Mr. Amyot 
conjectures that the play which Forman saw might be a fir^i 
part of Richard II., and by Shakespeare ; the existing drama 
being a second part : but Mr. Collier contends, with more pro- 
bability, that it was the play mentioned by Merrick. These 
singular documents were first printed by Mr. Collier, in his 
New Particidars regarding the Works of Shakespeare^ 8vo., 
Lond., 18S6, to which interesting work, as well as his new 
edition of Shakespeare, I refer the reader for information re- 
garding Forman's mistakes, &;c. Mr. Collier has not preserved 
the old orthography, but documents of so important a cha- 
racter appear worthy of a few pages to be printed for the first 
time in exact concordance with the original MS. 

[From MS. Ashmole 208, fol. 200-207.] 

The bocke of plates and nates therofper Formansfor eommon 

pollide. 

In Richard the 2 at the Glob^ 1611, ^ 30. of ApriUy 

Tuesday.^ 

Semember therin howe Jack Straw by his overmoch boldnes, 
not beinge pollitick nor suspecting anye thinge, was soddenly at 
Smithfeld Bars stabbed by Walworth, the Major of London, 

1 Farman always uses astrological characters for the days of the week. 
bM been ToiensA by mj prodeoenor; and it may be men- 
ii somewhat diffienlt to find ez^anatioiis of sach charaeters. 



112 FORM AN ON SHAKESPEARE'S PLAYS. 

and soe he and his whoUe army was overthrowen ; therfore in 
such a case or the like, never admit any parly without a bar 
betwen, for a man cannot be to wise, nor kepe himselfe to safe. 

Also remember howe the Duke of Gloster, the Erell of 
Arundell, Oxford and others, crossing the kinge in his humor 
about the Duke of Erland and Bushy, wer glad to fly and 
raise an hoste of men, and beinge in his castell, howe the D. of 
Erland cam by nighte to betray him with 300 men, but 
havinge pryvie waminge therof, kept his gates &ste, and wold 
not suffer the enimie to enter, which went back again vdth a 
flie in his eare,' and after was slainte by the Errell of Arundell 
in the battell. 

Remember also when the Duke and Arundell cam to London 
with their army, Kyng Richard came forth to them and met 
him, and gave them fair wordes, and promised them pardon, 
and that all should be well yf they wold discharge their army. 
Upon whose promises and fair speaches, they did yt; and 
after, the king byd them all to a banket, and soe betraid them, 
and cut of their heades &c. because they had not his pardon 
under his hand and sealle before, but his worde. 

Remember therin also howe the Duck of Lankaster pryrily 
contryyed all yillany to set them all together by the ears, and 
to mak the nobilyty to envy the kinge, and mislyke of him 
and his govemmentes, by which means he made his own sonn 
king, which was Henry Bullinbrock. 

Remember also howe the Duk of Lankaster asked a wise 
man wher himself should ever be kinge, and he told him no, 
but his sonn should be a kinge ; and when he had told him, 
he hanged him up for his labor, because he should not brute yt 
abrod or speke therof to others. This was a pollicie in the 
commonwealthes opinion, but I sai yt was a villains parte, and 
a Judas kisse to hange the man for telling him the trdih. 

* The common expression now ifs a fiea in his ear, which ocdut te 
Clarke*s Phraseologia^ 1655. 



s- SIIAKESPEARE3 PI.AYS. 



Beware by this example of noble mon and of their fair wordes, 
and sai lyttell to tliem, leat they doe the like by thee for thy 

goodwill. 

In the ^yiHter» TalU at the Glob, IGH, the 15 0/ Maijg, 



i 



Observe thor howe Lyoutes the Kinge of Clcillia waa over- 
corn with jelosy of his wife witli the Kingo of Bohemia, his 
friud, that came to see him, and howe lie contrived liis death, 
and wold have had hia cupberer to have poisoned [him] who 
gave the King of Bohemia warning therof and fled with Iiim to 
Bohemia. 

Remember also howe he sent to the orakell of Apollo, and 
the aunswer of Apollo that she was giltlea, and that the king 
was jelouse, &c. and howe, except the child was found again 
that was loste, the kinge should die without yssue ; for the 
child was caried into Bohemia, and there laid in a forrest, and 
brought up by a sheppard, and the Kinge of Bohemia hia aonn 
married that wentch ; and howo tlioy fled into Cicillia to 
Leontes, and the sheppard having showed the letter of the 
nobleman, by whom Leontes sent, it was that child, and [by] 
the Jewells found about her, she was knowon to be Leontes 
daughter and was then 16. vers old. 

E«member also the rog that cam in all tottered like roll 
pisci, and howe he fayned him sicke and to have him robbed 
of all that he had, and howe he cosoned the por man of all 
his money, and after cam to the shop ther with a pedlers p'acke, 
and ther cosened them again of all their money ; and howe he 
'•hanged apparrell with the Kinge of Boraia hia aonn, and then 
howe he turned courtier, fcc. Beware of trustinge feined 
beggars or fewiiinge fellouse. 

Of ClmhaUn King of Englnni. 

Remember also the storie of Cymbaiin King of England in 

iUeius tyme, howe Lucius cam from Ootavu* Cesar for tribut, 



I 



114 FORMAN ON ailAKESPEARES PI,AY9 

and being denied after sent Lucius with a great* 
eouldiars, who landed at Milford Haven, and afiter wer van- 
quished hy Cinibaliu and Lucius taken prisoner, and all hy 
means of 3 outlawcs, of the which 2 of them were the aoons of 
Cimbelin, stolen from liini, when they were but 2 yers old, by 
an old man whom Cymbalin banished, and he kept them as 
his own sonns 20 yers with him in Arcave. And bowe of of 
them slewe Clotan that the quens sonn goinge to Milford 
Haven to set the love ' of Innogen, the kingea daughter, whom 
he had banished also for lovinge his daughter, aud bowe the 
Italian that cam trom her love conveied himself into a cheste, 
and said yt was a chest of plate sent from liir love and othen 
to be presented to the kinge. And in the depest of the night, 
she boing aslepc, he opened the cheste and cam forth of yt, and 
vewed her in her bed and the markes of her body, and toko 
awai her hraslet, and after accused her of adultery to hee 
love &o. And in th'end howe be came with the Remains into 
England, and was taken prisoner, and after reveled to Imogen, 
who had turned herself into mans appai'rcl], and fled to meet 
her tove at Milford Havon, aud cbanchsed to fall on the cave 
in the wodes wher her 2 brothers wore, aud howe by eatisg a 
sleplng dram, they thought she had bin deed, and laid her in 
the wodes and the body of Cloten by her, in her loves appanell 
that he left behind him, and howe she was found by Lucius &o. 

In Maekbeth at the Glob, IGIO, the 20 of Aprill, Satvrdaif.* 

Thcr was to he observed firste howe Maekbeth and Bancko, 

2 noblemeen of Scotland, ridinge thorowe a wod, ther stode 



I 



' That is, PoBthumus. 

' The 20th of April in 1010 fell on a Friday, but the 20th of A] 
1611 on Saturday. Tliis affords a strong ground for believing that 
date in Ihc text h a mistake for 1 61 1, and this latter ia much more likely 
to be correct, being nearer the other dates. I have very little doubt that 
Cymbeline was seen by Fonnan also in the spring of 1611. 



J 



FORMAN ON SHAKESPEARE'S PLAYS. 



115 



befor them 3 women felries or numplies, and saluted Mack- 
beth, sayiiige t. 3 tyma uuto him " liaille Mackbeth, King of 
Codon, for thou shalt bo a kinge, but ahalt be;ret no kingoa, fcc." 
Then said Bancko, " What all to Mackbeth and nothing to 
me r Yer »aid the nimphes, " haille to the, Bauko, thou 
ehalt beget kinges, yet be no kinge ;" and so they deperted, 
and cam to the courte of Scotland to Dunkin, King of Scotes, 
and yt was in the dais of Edwarde the Confesacr. And 
Dunkin bad them both kindly wellcome, and made Mackbeth 
forthwith Prince of Northumberland, and aent liim liom to his 
own caatell, and appointed Mackbeth to provid for him, for he 
wold sup with him the next dai at uight, and did soc. And 
Mackebeth contrived to kill Dunkin, and thorowe the persua- 
sion of his wife, did that night murder the kinge in hia own 
castell, beinge hia guest. And then were many prodigies seen 
that night and the dai before. And when Mackbeth had 
murdred the kinge, the blod on his handes could not be washed 
of by any means, nor from his wives handes, which handled 
the btuddi daggers in hiding them, by which meana they 
became both moch amazed and affrouted. The murder 
being knowen, Dunkins 2 sonna fled theen to England the 
Walles to aave theniselvea. They beingo fled, they were sup- 
posed guilty of the murder of their father, which was nothing 
80. Then was Mackbeth crowned kinge, and then he, for 
feare of Banko hia old companion, that he should beget kinges 
but be no kinge himself, he contrived the death of Banko, and 
caused him to be murdred on the way as he rode. The next 
night, beinge at supper with his noble men, whom he hod bid 
to a feaste, to the which also Banco should have com, he 
began to speake of noble Banco and to wish that he wer ther. 
And as he thus did, standing up to drincke a carouse to him, 
the ghoste of Banco came and sate down in his cheier behind 
him. And he turninge about to sit down again, sawe the 
goate of Banco, which frouted him so that he fell into a great 
passion of fear and iury, utteringe many wordes about his 
i2 



1 1 6 SHAKESPEARE'S BIRTH-PLACE. 

murder, by wliich, when they hard that Banco was mtv 
they suspected Mack bet. 

Then Mackdove fled to England to the kingea sonn, and 
8oe they raised an army, and cam into Scotland, and at Dun- 
Bcenanyeo ovorthrue Mackbet. In the meaiie tynie, wbille 
Mackdove was in England, Mackhet alewe Mackdores vrifa 
and children, and after in the battello Mackdove slewe Macket. 

Observe also howe Maekbetes ()uen did rise in the night in 
her slepe and walked and talked and confessed all, and tho 
doctor noted her wordea. 



SECTION X. SHAKESPEARE S BIRTH-PLACE. 

It is not quite needless, in the question of Shakespeare's 
popularity among his contemporaries and immediate successors, 
to ascertain how soon after the poet's death Stratford-on-Avon 
was singled out aa memorable, on account of its being his birth- 
place, residence, and last resting-place. In 1662, Sir Thomas 
Browne in one of his journeys mentions "Sbakspear tombe in 
Stretford" aa an object worthy of special visit. See MS. 
Sloane, 1900, f. 15. I have recently met with a much earlier 
instance iu a work printed in 1639, in which the circumstance 
of its being the dramatist's birth-place ia alluded to as the 
" most remarkable " connected with Stratford. 



I 



" One travelling through Stratford upon Avon, a towns 
most remarkeable for t/te btrlh of famom William S/taksipeart, 
and walking in the church to doe his devotion, espied a thing 
there worthy observation, which was a tombestone laid more than 
three hundred yeeres agoe, on which was engraven an epitaph 
to this purpose : I, Thomas auch-a-one, and Elizabeth, mj ' 
wife, here under lie buried, and know, reader, I, R. C, aad 1 
Christop''. Q. are alive at this howre tow itncsse it." ABan^uHl 
ofJetl4, or Chanpe ofChear^, 12mo, Lond., 1639. No. 150. 



EPITAPH ON COMBE. 117 

SECTION XL EPITAPH ON COMBE. 

There appears to be considerable doubt whether the yerses 
written by Shakespeare on Combe, the usurer, are preserved. 
Every one knows the epitaph on him attributed to Shake- 
speare, but this is found in many contemporary collections, 
and there is no sufficient evidence to establish the authorship. 
The following couplets, from an early manuscript, exhibit the 
popularity of Gombe'^s epitaph under other forms, and applied 
to another person. 

Here lyes 10 with 100 under this stone^ 
A 100 to one but to th^ divel hees gone. 

MS. Sloane, 1489, fol. 11. 

Who is this lyes under this hearse ! 
Ho, ho ! quoth the divel, ^tis my Dr. Pearse. 

M8. Ibid., fol. 11. 

The editors of Shakespeare have omitted to notice a version 
given in a MS. at Oxford, nearly contemporary with Shake* 
speare : — 

On John Combe, a covetous rich man, Mr. Wm. Shakipear 
vyright this att his request, while hee tocu yeU liveing, for his 
epitaph. 

Who lies in this tomb ! 

Hough, quoth the devill, 'tis my son, John a Combe. 

But being dead, and making the poore his heiers, hee after 
Wright this for his epitaph, 

Howere ho lived, judge not. 

John Combe shall never be forgott. 

While poor hath memorye ; for hee did gather 

To make the poore his issue : hee, their father, 



118 EPITAPH ON SHAKESPEARE. 

As record of his title and seede, 

Did crowne him in his latter seede. Finis, W. Shak. 

MS. Ashmde, 3^, f. 180. 



SECTION XII. EPITAPH ON SHAKESPEARE. 

Few persons will be willing to confer on Shakespeare the 
merit of the four lines commencing '^ Good friend, for Jesns^ 
sake, forbear ;^^ and if they happen to be superior to the 
miserable doggrel often exhibited on tombs by popular or indi- 
vidual fancy, there can, nevertheless, be little doubt either thai 
the lines in question were commonly used for the purpose in 
Shakespeare^s time, or were composed, by a pen &r below the 
great poef^s in power or liberal feeling. Most probably the 
former, for Hackett tells us the same epitaph was to be seen 
in his time on a stone in St. PauFs Churchyard, Goveni 
Garden. See Seled and Remarkdble Epitaphs^ voL i., p. 182. 
This epitaph was erected about eighty years after Shake- 
speare^s. I give a somewhat similar one, hitherto inedited, firom 
a MS. volume of poetical miscellanies, written about the year 
1630, and preserved in Bawlinson^s collection, in the Bodleian 
Library : — 

Epitaphe on a Bakere. 

For Jesus Ghriste his sake forbeare 
To dig the bones under this biere ; 
Blessed is hee who loues my duste, 
But damnd bee he who moues this cruste ! 



SECTION XIII. THOMAS AND JOHN SHAKESPEARE. 

Whether the Thomas Shakespeare mentioned in the fidlow- 
ing documents be any relation to the poet, I have not hm 



THOMAS AND JOHN SHAKESPEARE. 119 

able to ascertain ; biit perhaps some oue better read in the 
genealogy of his family will clear up this point. The originals 

arc prcaerved at the Eolle'' House, Chancery Lane. 

xiii" October, 1571. 
Thomas Sbakapero, one of the Qnenea Ma"" messengers of 
the chamber, cravith allowaimce for rydinge from the courte 
at Richmonde with the counsayles lettres, in great haste to 
the right worshipfull Sir Walter Mildmay, knight, one of the 
Quenea majesties pryvio coiins.iyle j and from thence to Nor- 
wlche, and from Nanviche to a place called Bakenthorpc, to 
Sir Christoter Hejdon, knight, which Is twentie myles from 
Norwiche, and I was ffonrtho tenn dayes. 



Allotee to hvm afire ^ , 

> xxxnja. uijd. 
tijs. iit/d. per aiem J 

Wa. Mildmate. 



Meimg Kffeemhria anna EHzab : Ee<}inw, xiij". 

Thomas Shakespare, one of the Queues Majesties Mes- 
sengers, axithe alowaunce for his chardgea rydjnge at the 
comaundemente of the Right Honnorabte Sir Walter Mylde- 
maye, knight, Chauncelare of thexcheker, from Westminster 
to Lincolne, for Truateram Terwhyte, eaquier, and dyd wame 
hym to apearo before hia honor and the bamea of thexche- 
quiere, nyche he dyd not acordinge to hia bonde, and so by 
resone thereof, at hia honours comandement rode to Lj-n- 
cohie againe for him, and durste not come before his honors 
TDtell auche tynie as lie hade founde hym, and then brought 
hym before his honor, and dyscliarged hyraaelf of hym. 
Wherfore the sayde Shakespare prayethe to haue alowaunce 
for his chardges and payis for xxxv. dayes at iijs. iiijd. the 
daye, and to be rated by the Bight Honorable Sir Walter 



120 THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 

Myldmaye, knight, and to be payde by one of the Quenes 
Majesties tellores of the recayte at Westminster. 

Summa v" xtJ" iiij**. 
AUaw in recampence of this bill the somme of jffbure pounder. 

Wa. Mildmaye. 

In the same office I found the following notice of John 
Shakespeare, the bit-maker, who is mentioned in a MS. quoted 
by Mr. Collier : — 

To John Shakespeare for one gilt bit for the sadle afore- 
said, iij" xiij- vj^. [1621.] 

To John Shakespeare for xiiij. bittes, guilt silvered and 
chast, at v" x" a piece, iij»* xvij*** 

For one payre of bosses, richly enameled, 1". 

In an "Account for Tylting,"' 1620, occurs this entry : — - 

To John Shakespeare for vij. bittes for the sadles aforesaid, 
at lij" vj** apiece, xviij" vij" vj**. 

It appears to me that all early notices of the name of Shake* 
Bpeare are worth preserving; as it is impossible to say, without 
very rigorous examination, that they may not in some way be 
connected with the poefs family. 



SECTION XIV. THE YOUNG GALLANT S WHIRUGIO. 

There are few who will not be pleased to have a reprint of 
this most curious and interesting tract, which is so excessively 
rare that Sir Egerton Brydges supposes only one copy to be 
in existence. See his Bestituta, iii., 508. Besides his printed 
works, Lenton wrote the "Poetical History of Queene Hester, 
with the translation of the 83rd psalm, reflecting upon the 
present times,'*'' MS., dated 1 649. The allusions to Ben Jonson, 



THE VOUNC GALLANTS WHIRLIGIG. 



121 



the theatres, &e., render the following piece one williin our 
deeign, and a perusal will convince the reader that its curioaity 
is a sufficient apology for its introduction. 

The YoTHg Gallants Whirligigg, or, YoTtha Reakes, de- 
monstrating the inordinate affections, absurd actions, and pro- 
fuse expends of vnbridled and aft'ectated youth. With their 
extravagant courses, and preposterous progressions and aver- 
sions. Together with the too often deare bought experience, 
and the rare, or too late regression and reclamation of most of 
them from their habituall ill customes, and vnqualiGed manners, 
Vtitatum pcccatum, pcceatum non videtur. 
Compiled and written by F. L. 
Nemo Ittdittir nisi d teipeo. 
Ergo: 

lam tituloa hortare, viamque iimds dofitandl. 
Dam faciUi animi jutenum; diim mobilia wtae. — Virg. 
Loudon : printed by M. F. for Robert Bostoeke, at the 
eigne of the Kings head in Paula Churchyard. 1629. 

To the Right Honourable Sir Julius Caesar, Knight, 

Master of the Rolls, and one of his Majesties 

most Honourable Privy Counsell. 



Right Honourable, 

Observing the by-paths of this prodigall generation, 
and having contracted niyselfe within a smaller and narrower 
compasse then the loosnes of too many do admit, I thought it 
not amisse (seeing examples take no impression in the lives of 
lascivious youths) to venture upon a checke to their folHes, by 
way of precept, in some briefe impolisht numbers, suiting with 
the common enormities of these times. And in regard that 1 
once belonged to the Innes of Court, and have a long time, (as 
well by generall reports aa my owne particular knowledge,) 
beene an eye witnesse of your loyalty in your place, piety iu 



122 



THE YOUNG GALLANTS WHIRLIQIG. 



your family, clemeucy toward poors clyenta, charity to the 
needy, and courteaie to all, I have presumed (under your 
hononra favour,) to present you with a piece of an houres 
recreation, licenced by good autliority. I am no usuall poet'izer, 
but to barre Idleness have imployed that little talent tho 
Muses have couferM upon me in this little tract. If it shall 
please your honor but to warme it under your noble wings, no 
doubt but it will grow bigger and better, and encourage me to 
write a 'more large and solid labor. Accept it, then, right 
honorable, and peruse it but with the tythe of that respect 
which my duty and devotion presents it, and none shall be 
more truly gratetull to your so much honoured gravitie, then. 
Your honors most humbly obliged, 

Fra. Lentok. 



I 



To three sorU o/Meadtfn. 
You ho mo- bred Dotards wonted to relate 
The tedious stories of a quondam state, 
Tye up your tongues, and now with admiration, 
Behold the times preposterous alteration : 
If your experience will fiude out the truth. 
Like .^aoD, your old age must tume to youth. 
You gilded Snow-balb, and aspiring Sprighta, 
That nought disceme but sensuall delights, 
That throw away your dayes before you can 
Truly deserve the epithete of Man ; 
Observe these numbers, and impollsbt layes, 
Which, though they cannot merit any bayes, 
May (if you please) as in a looldng-glasse, 
Shew you the follies of a golden asse. 
I doe not satyrize, but still desire. 
In loving zealo, and true fratemall fire, 
T'informe your judgements by some men's ieeaf, ^ 
And, by their waodring, point you perfect vfty> 



THE YOUNG GALLANTS WHIRLIGIG. 

Precepts are good, but if you them refiise, 
Your owne example may make good my muse. 

You tender Blades, not ripeued by tlie Times, 
That know, nor Vertue, nor the moderne crimes, 
Whose understandings cannot apprehend 
How fiirre your Will, your Reason doth extend : 
Whose softer niindea and young progressions 
Are apt for any faire impressions, 
Behold foule Vice, clad in a gorgeous ray. 
And pined Vertue, patcht in poorest gray, 
Take heede in time, be happy if yon can. 
See, and forsake by this unhappy man : 
But if according to your youtliftill dayes. 
You will be mad, and memorate your praise 
By your loose Actions, spinning out your tbred 
In vanitie, untill your fatall bed 
Surprise you unawares, and take you hence 
Before your soules have thought of peuitence. 
Know, when your Ignorance hath had full scope, 
You'l curse your selves if ere your eyes be ope, 
And thinke too late, of what I finde too true, 
As more have done, as well as I or you. 

Vale. 

A Fiction by wai/ of Argument on this JBooie. 
Pondering the pathes of this polluted age, 
And viewing every scene upon the stage 
Of this vile orbe, inethought I did behold 
A giddy spirit in an Isle of Gold ; 
His head, methought, was like a Windmill bigge, 
In which ten thousand thoughts run Whirligigg ; 
Inclos'd he was (not by delusive dreames) 
With reall lustre of Pactola's etreames ; 



124 THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 

In which he proudly sailes with glorious deckes, 
Unfill the frigide zone his passage checkes, 
By hard congealed Rocks, by which he split 
His goodly Bulke ; shipwrackt himselfe and it. 
But Neptune, tendring his unhappy goare, 
Commands the waves to cast him on the shoare, 
Where, when awhile in mind he had forecast 
His sinne against the gods by times ill past, 
Jove sent his messenger to tell him yet 
Pallas had promisM wisedome to his wit : 
This raised his spirits, and twixt griefe and zeale, 
By bright Apollo'*s ayde, rings youth a Peale. 

The Whirligigg. 
Leaving the learned axiomes of old, 
Which grave Philosophers have wisely told, 
And left behind them in a morall booke, 
For childish youth and crooked age to looke, 
I doe intend to explicate some crimes 
Now perpetrated in these modeme times, 
Which differ from the oldeme dayes as ferre 
As is the Artique from th'Antartique starre. 

And thou, Galiope, thou noble Muse, 
Into my braines thy Caelique power infuse. 
That I may plainly point out my intent. 
For youth to know, and knowing to prevent ; 
And though some critiques may suppose me vaine, 
To write these Numbers in heroicke straine ; 
They being used at sad Obsequies, 
By weeping lines in dolefuU Elegies ; 
To satisfie their pregnant wits in this, 
I tell them I was one of those rcmisse 
And giddy youths, which wandred in the ayre 
Of vaine opinion, and excluding Care ; 



THE TOl'NG GALLAXTS WHIRLtdlf!. 

But when my riper yeeres began to spy 
The end thereof to be but misery, 
And when I saw their fond and idle crasLea, 
To be like meteors, onely spent in flashes, 
I did retire then from that deepe abysse 
WJiere horrid Gordons doe both sting and hysse. 
And dying from that life, as on my herse, 
I wrote these numbera in heroick Verse. 

But now my Gallants Age I meane to skan, 
Of infancy, of childhood, youth and e 
The former two I will but onely touch. 
Lest his two following ages prove too much. 

When at his mother's tender paps hee lay. 



How did she wait up< 



jvery day 




Tyring herselfe by tossing in her armes 

His grisly body, keeping it from harmee : 

And when his growth hath lent him legs to goe, 

Reeling and tottering then both to and fro, 

How often did Hhe watuh, and cry, and call, 

" Take heedo the little boy there doth not fall." 

Her ardent care, joyn'd with her constant eye, 

Did still attend his imbecilitie. 

Her worn be and b rests in which he did delight. 

He never shall be able to requite. 

His Childhood next (unlesse he was a foole,) 
Required them to put him nnto schoole, 
Where in processe of time he grew to bee 
A pretty scholler ; after, tooke degree 
IHh' Universitie, as it was fit, 
Whose Tutor said hee had a ready wit. 
And well could argue by old Ramus layea. 
And in the thirteene fallacies had praise. 
Hee well could skill upon brave Kicker 
And argue soundly ore a pipe or c 



L 



THE YOUNG OALLANT 8 WHIRLIGIG, 

For ecliollers sometime bi an alehouse creeping. 
Increase their wits more then in bookes by peeping. 

Now all tills wliile liee had not his full scope, 
Therefore they did conceive of him great hope : 
His Tutor was the man that kept him in, 
That hee ran not into excesse of ainne. 
His literature fill'd hia parents'' hearts 
With joy and comfort, hoping hia deserts 
Might purchase credit and a good report, 
And therefore send him to the bines of Court, 
To study Lawes, and never to surcease. 
Till he be made a justice for the peace. 

Now, here the ruine of the youth begins ; 
For when the country cannot finde out sinnes 
To fit his humour, London doth invent 
Millions of vices, that are incident 
To his aspiring minde ; for now one yeare 
Doth elevate him to a higher sphere. 
And makes him thinke he hath atchieved more, 
Then all his fethera auncestors before. 
Now thinkes his father, here's a goodly sonne, 
That hath approached unto Littleton, 
But never lookt on't — for, instead of that 
Perhaps hee's playing of a game at Cat. 
No, no, good man, hee reados not Littleton, 
But Boa Quise-Zot, or els The Knight o'tk Sun: 
And if you chance unt« him put a case, 
Hee'II say, perhaps, you offer him disgrace. 
Or else, upon a little further pawse, 
Will sweare hee never conld abide the lawes : 
That they are harsh, confused — and, to be plaine. 
Transcend the Umits of his shallow braine. 
Instead of Perkins pedlers French, he sayes 
He better loves Ben Johnson's booke of playes. 



THE yOUNG GALLANT 8 WIIIBLIGIG. 

But that therein of wit lie findcs such plenty, 
Tliat hee scarce underatanda a jest of twenty ; 
Nay, keepe him there untill the day of doome, 
Hee'le ne'er reade out Natura Brevium, 
But, Ovid-like, againat hia fiither'a miiide, 
Finde pleasant studies of another kinde. 

Now, twice the Sun his annuall course hath flitted 
Since first thla goodly Gallant was admitted. 
And now, as hee approacheth towards the Barre, 
Hia friends and parents very jocund are ; 
And, to inconrage him in the Lawes lore. 
He spends much money, and they send him more. 
He mlfles now in sattin, silke, and plush. 
And oftentimes soliciteth the bush, 
Imbroydred suits, such as his lather ne'er 
Knew what they meant, nor hee knowes how to wear. 
This golden Asse, in this hard iron age, 
Aspireth now to sit upon the stage ; 
Lookes round about, then viewes his glorious selfe, 
TlirowB mony here and there, swearing hang pelfe, 
As if the splendor of his mightinesse 
Should never see worse dayes, or feele diatresse : 
Hia quoyne expended by alluring hookes, 
Hia parents him supply to buy him bookes. 
As hee pretends : but, 'stead of Coke's Reports, 
Hee'a fencing, danncing, or at other sports. 

Thus he affects himeelfe in these fond wayes, 
To gaiuB an outward superficiall praise 
Amongst a crew, of sense so much bereft. 
They scarcely know the right hand from the left. 

His danncing master he supposeth can 
Make him a right accomplisht gentleman, 
Although his birth abridg'd it : therefore hee 
Now leamea the poaturea of the cap and knee, 



THE VOUN'n GALLANT'b WUIRLI0IC5 

Carryin^^ hia body in as curioue sort 

As any revellor in the Innes of Court, 

That ladicB doe behold him with some pleasure, 

Capriiig Corantocs, or some sniootL-fac'd meaaure. 

And in the end of hia so active dance. 

Some crooked lady claps her hands by chance, 

AVhich addes such fuell to his kindled fire, 

That bee outstrips proud Phjeton's desire. 

And should great Juno but approach so nie. 

He durst presume to court, her Deitie. 

Now Venus hath hioi in her lovely annea. 
And the blind boy provokes hiin with his charms, 
Casting from beauteous objects piercing darts. 
Which strike fond lovers to their fiery harts, 
Which, being once iufiamed, still doth bume, 
Untill their fiiell unto ashes tume. 
Hee now courts everything bee hearea or sees, 
With more delight then Lawyers take their feea, 
And when he is farre distant from bis faire, 
(Through ardencie,) he complements with ayre. 
Wishing (camelion-like) that hee might live 
Inclos'd within the breath which she doth give. 
All amorous conceits he now commends. 
And for the same his mony vaiuly spends. 
He now scornes prose, and on bis mistres" name 
Writes an acroatique, or some anagramme, 
To shew his wit ; and therefore hee bath got 
Some Poetaster for a double pot. 
To lend bis aide unto bis ibin-sculd braine. 
To paint her praises in a lofty etratne. 
By some encoiniastique adulation. 
To which she bath or small or no relation : 
The Poet undertakes it on condition, 
Hee spends a quart of aacke for expedition. 



THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 129 

And then hee sends it unto Mistress Tit, 
In his owne name, though by another'^s wit. 
Thus, when in streets hee shall be seene to passe. 
The Poet sayes, There goes a simple asse. 
And makes it unto his associates knowne, 
Hee writes good lines, but never writes his owne. 

Your theaters hee daily doth frequent, 
(Except the intermitted time of Lent) 
Treasuring up within his memory 
The amorous toyes of every Comedy 
With deepe delight ; whereas, he doth appeare 
Within God's Temple scarcely once a yeare. 
And that poore once more tedious to hi^ minde. 
Then a yeares travell to a toiling hynd. 
Playes are the nurseries of vice, the bawd. 
That thorow the senses steales our hearts abroad. 
Tainting our eares with obscsne bawdery, 
Lascivious words, and wanton ribaulry. 
Charming the casements of our soules, the eyes. 
To gaze upon bewitching vanities. 
Beholding base loose actions, mimick gesture. 
By a poore boy clad in a princely vesture. 
These are the onely tempting baits of hell. 
Which draw more youth unto the damned cell 
Of fiirious lust, then all the devill could doe. 
Since he obtained liis first overthrow. 
Here Idlenesse, mixt with a wandring minde. 
Shall such varietie of objects finde, 
That ten to one his will may breake the fence 
Of reason, and imbrace concupiscence : 
Or, if this misse, there is another ginne. 
Close linckt unto this taper house of sinne, 
That will intice you unto Bacchus feasts, 
'Mongst gallants that have bin his ancient guests, 

K 



130 THE YOUNG OALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 

There to caroaee it till the welkin roare, 
Drinking full boles untill their bed's the floare : 
"^Mongst these it is a customary fashion, 
To drinke their mistress' health with adoration. 
On balded knees, tossing whole flagons up, 
Untill their bellies fill againe the cup ; 
And when for more they throw down pots and yall. 
Their bladder's kindnesse is reciprocall ; 
Sweare, lye, stab, kill, adore their mistress eyes, 
More then the Master of th' Olympicke skies. 
• Thus, more like beasts then men, devoid of reason. 
They please their pallates by committing treason 
Against their God, whose image they defiice, 
Obscuring reason, and abhorring grace, 
Till Bacchus growing horned, enlarged with fury. 
Takes Atrapos his place without a jury ; 
And who can tell whether Elizium 
Receives their soules, or the infemall tombe ! 
What is not apt unto a drunken soule ! 
Even anything that is or base or foule : 
From no absurditie it is exempt. 
As daring any action to attempt. 
The five great crying sinnes of this our land, 
Which daily draweth downe God's heavy hand, 
Are incident to this vile watry sinne, 
That stickes so fest where it doth once b^in, 
To sweare, to lie, to kill, to steale, to whore. 
With thousand other petty vic^ more. 

Mark but the horrid oathes that men do sweare. 
As if from heaven their Maker they would teare. 
Adorning as they thinke their forged lyes. 
With hellish rhetorique of blasphemies ; 
Rejecting that which once the Lord did say, 
Let yea be yea, and let your nay be nay, 



THE YOUNG OALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 131 

Forgetting what a curse and fatall blame 
Shall waite on them that crucifie his name. 

Lying the next, in which vaine youths delight, 
But such ne''er tarryed in David^s sight. 
For they that doe invent and frame such evill, 
Are of their damned &ther callM the devill ; 
And if in time they looke not well about, 
Shall keepe them company that are shut out. 

The thu*d is homicide, that cruell crime, 
That seld or never doth at any time 
Outlive its punishment ! for the Law is good 
And just^ that doth require blood for blood. 
But most of all when done on such false ground, 
As in ebrietie is often found. 

The fourth is theft, the droane of Commonwealths, 
That never favoreth the goods or healths 
Of brethren, neighbours, that desire to thrive. 
And by hard labour have encreasM their hive. 
No sooner got, but straight this crafty droane 
By rapine takes, and spends it as his owne. 
The Law condemnes, the Gall-house is preparM, 
Many are trussM for this, but few deterrM. 

The fift is whoredome and Adulterie, 
Daughters of drunkennes and gluttonie. 
By these and lazinesse they are begot, 
As once appeared by the righteous Lot : 
O ! would but once that act had ever bin. 
Then wee had scapM, and Lot had borne that sin. 

And now my lusty gallant, still resolvM, 
Into the middle reg^ion is involvM, 
Which though it coldest be of constitution, 
Yet doth it not allay his resolution. 
Old DsBdalus his father being dead. 
He now begins to take a greater head ; 

k2 



132 THE YOUNG GALLANT's WHIRLIGIG. 

With Icarus he purposeth to flye 

As high as heaven, but marke ! — and presently, 

Great Phoebus by his power melts his wings, 

And headlong to the sea his body flings. 

His fortunes drown'^d, his corps the fishes prey. 

His fiery braines quencht in the brinish sea. 

For now his fathers lands, bonds, golden bags, 

Buyes him a coach, foure Flanders mares, two nags, 

A brace of geldings, and a brace of whores. 

The one for pockes, the other plaines and moores : 

Viewing his chariot and his rich attire. 

Makes him beleeve the world is all on fire. 

He courts it now even at the court indeed. 

Sometimes on gennet, sometimes English steed, 

Pacing with lacques in the paved streets. 

In glory bowing to each friend he meets, 

(Too prodigall of bis famM courtesie. 

Which may be term**d a proud humilitie,) 

The estridge on his head, with beaver rare. 

Upon his hands a Spanish sent to weare. 

Haires curPd, eares pearFd, with Bristows brave and bright. 

Bought for true diamonds in his false sight ; 

All ore perfumM, and, as for him tis meete, 

His body's clad {"'th silkwormes winding sheete. 

Now, thus accoutred and attended to. 

In Court and citie there'^s no small adoe 

With this young stripling, that obraids the gods. 

And tliinkes. 'twixt them and him, there is no ods : 

A haughty looke, a more superbious minde, 

A nd yet, amongst his equalls, too-too kinde. 

A wanton eye, and a lascivious heart. 

That sees no danger, till hee feeles the smart : 

Now, as where tamest feathered fowles abound. 

Foxes keepe station, and walke that round. 



THE YOUNO gallant's WHIRLIGIG. 1 33 

So, when a raw yong heire is come to land, 
He shall have foxes waite on every hand ; 
When wealth increaseth to a prodigall, 
Who will profusely waste and spend it all. 
There is vaine-glory, and, without all doubt, 
The flatterer will finde that fellow out, 
To soothe him in his grosse and humerous waies, 
That neither doe deserve nor love nor praise : 
For when such men doe in applause delight, 
They presently beget a parasite. 
Who, by insinuating adulation. 
Debase themselves to others elevation : 
This cringing serpent ile no longer smother. 
But give the knave to him, and foole to th** other. 

The Cockpit heretofore would serve his wit. 
But now upon the Fryers stage hee**ll sit ; 
It must be so, though this expensive foole, 
Should pay an angell for a paltry stoole. 
The largest tavemes of the neatest fashion 
Hee doth frequent — hee drinkes for recreation. 
Your Ordinaries, and your Gaming-schooles, 
(The game of Mercuries, the mart of fooles) 
Doe much rejoyce when his gold doth appeare^ 
Sending him empty with a flea in's eare ; 
And when hee's gone, to ohe another laugh. 
Making his meanes the subject of their scofle, 
And say, it*'s pity hee"'s not better taught, 
Hee'^s a faire gamester, but his lucke is nought. 
In the meanetime, his pockets being scant, 
Hee Andes a lurcher to supply his want. 
One that ere-long, by playing in-and-in, 
Will carry all his Lordship in a skin ; 
Yet, as insensible of that device, 
As niiuding more his pleasure, cards, and dice, 



134 THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 

Before the sun hath run his circle round, 

He in the center of his game is found, 

Hazarding that which late was lent unto him, 

Not dreaming any course can quite undoe him ; 

Thus by degrees his patrimonie wastes, 

Whilst he nor sees, heares, feeles, or smels, or tastes 

His folly, shame, abuse, deceit, or woe. 

That future times may force him undei^. 

But makes progression in his wonted course. 

With as much understanding as a horse, 

Burning the cards, damning the dice that lost, 

Swearing and cursing, ne'er was man thus crost, 

Drinking out sorrow, whiffing sighes away, 

Converting day to night, and night t^ day, 

As if good nature had abusM this wight. 

And done him wrong, that did himselfe no right. 

O, most insensible and sensuall beast, 

How are thy intellectuall powers decreast, 

Whose understanding is so much condense, 

That one would thinke his soule within his sense ; 

For any object that the sense doth move, 

Drawes on affection, and affection love ; 

Love being setled by its powerfull might 

Upon or good, or bad, attracts delight ; 

Delight breeds custome, and by times progresse, 

Engendreth a foule monster, callM Excesse : 

Excesse joyes in extreames, whose violence 

Is alwayes opposite to permanence. 

Thus giving way to appitituall guile. 

They force poore Reason to a farre exile. 

But stay, my muse, you must not dare to flye 
Into the secrets of moralitie. 
But still proceede i'th path you have begun, 
Untill the setting of this rising sun. 



THE YOUNQ GALLANT'S WHIRLIGia. 135 

Who in his highest sphere now seated is, 
In the Solstitium of his ajrie blisse. 
Bent to his bane, through prodigall expence, 
Luxury, drunkennes, incontinence, 
Pride of apparell, and yaine-glorious acts, 
Painted delusions, ignominious &ctB^ 
Seducing harlots, sucking parasites, 
Bewitching syrens, and lascivious nights. 
Abusive cheatings, and illusive friends, 
That seem'^d to love him for sinister ends, 
Unfruitfiill plots, matches unfortunate, 
Noctumall revellings intemperate. 
With millions of deceiving vanities, 
Throwne in our waies by Sathans treacheries } 
Depriving men of rich celestiall joyes, 
For wretched hopes in momentary toyes. 
Now being aspired to his utmost pride. 
Each full must have a wane, as ebb a tide, 
For having by a thousand subtle hookes, 
Squeezed for friends, scribled in mercers bookes, 
Perceiving his decay, they summon straight 
Their wits together, and doe lie in waite, 
(By the devils engins) to deprive him quite 
Both of his libertie, and his delight ; 
And ere hee can behold his wofuU case, 
He is immured in some wretched place. 
This Butterfly, with all his garish tyre, 
Now melteth like the snow agaiast the fire ; 
This Grashopper, that th''other day was seene, 
Capring within his curious silken greene. 
Singing shrill notes unto the summers praise. 
Never expected crabbed winter daies. 
Till chilling autimine, with his falling leaves. 
Shrivels his body, and his hope deceives : 



136 THE YOUNG OALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 

His silken garments, and his sattin robe, 

That hath so often visited the Globe, 

And all his spangled, rare, perftim^d attires, 

Which once so glistred in the torchy Fryers, 

Must to the breakers to compound his debt. 

Or else be pawned to procure him meate. 

Now debt on debt they doe accumulate, 

Upon his careftiU body and estate ; 

Vowing revenge upon his carkasse there. 

Sorrowing onely that they did forbeare 

So long a time, but now the very stones 

Will pitty him, before they heare his moanes. 

Nor are his creditors alone obdure. 

But even his copesmates, whom he thought so sure. 

Shall shrinke like slimy snailes into the shell. 

Whilst he his plaints unto the walls doth tell. 

Whose friendship was ingendred by the sun, 

Reflecting on their base corruption. 

Nay, more— -his bosome friends (whose neer relation 

Should ne'^er admit of any separation,) 

Come slowly on, as sorry for his griefe. 

But have not wherewithal! to yeeld reliefe. 

And as the nature of the world is such. 

To give the needlesse, and the needy grutch, 

So this dejected man, borne to this fate, 

(As if thereto hee were predestinate,) 

Is now denyM, who in his prosperous dayes. 

Did winter them that winke at his decayes ; 

For now the equall Justice of the time, 

Requires each man to keepe within his clime ; 

For if hee straggle from his limits farre, 

(Except the guidance of some happy starre 

Doe rectifie his steps, restore his losse) 

He may perhaps come home by weeping crosse. 



THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 137 

Now doth his sonle begin to gather light, 
'Which makes his understanding farre more bright ; 
Now doth the filme of his obscured soule 
Weare off, and manly reason doth controle 
The vagrant will and thirsting appetite, 
Yeelding unto the soule her due and right ; 
Now is his braine more solid and more dry, 
By apprehension of his miserie ; 
And not so apt to fancies wandering. 
That ne'er remaineth firme in anything. 
Now with his heart hee wisheth that hee had 
But two full yeares of those which were so bad ; 
But all too late, for time doth alwayes passe. 
But ne**er imployes a retrograding glasse. 
Now he commends the bee (though void [of] reason,) 
That hoards in summer for the winter season. 
Admiring much the fabricke of their cell. 
And how they fortifie that Cittadell : 
A wonder tis to see what they invent, 
Both for their lodging, food, and government ; 
For, as some grave philosophers have showne. 
Each bee eates nought but that which is her owne. 

! thinkes hee now, had I but kept my store, 

1 needed not my carelesnesse deplore ; 
Or, had my younger daies afforded wit, 

To spend no more then what I now thinke fit ; 
Had no insinuating droanes come neere 
My plentious hive, I never had come here. 

Another while he lookes upon the ant, 
Sees her great plenty, feeles his greater want, 
Admires her providence that laboured still 
Her winter bames in summer time to fill. 
Wonder of nature, hater of all sloath. 
The most laborious, though of smallest growth ! 



138 THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 

Lastly, lookes backe, with a dejected eye, 

Upon his pampred daies, sports, Ubertie, 

His midnight revels, and abundant wine 

He sacrificed unto Bacchus shrine, 

His bowles of Nectar, fill'^d up to the brim 

In which he to his marmosite did swim ; 

His oysters, lobstars, caviare, and crabs. 

With which he feasted his contagious drabs ; 

Oringoes, hartichoakes, potatoe pies, 

Provocatives unto their luxuries ; 

His musickes consort, and a cursed crue. 

That usM to drinke, untill the ground look''d blew, 

^Mongist painted sepulchers, that love exoesse, 

Who inwardly are full of rottennesse. 

Thus, when he viewes with a more perfect sight. 
His shining mome tum'^d to a gloomy night, 
And all his glory, pompe, and vaine expence, 
To have their due reward and recompence. 
Then, bursting forth with accUmation, 
He blames this wicked generation. 
Cursing his follies, and the subtle snares, 
That in his darknes caught him unawareo. 
Being forced now thorow his owne decay. 
To wish the fragments, erst he threw away. 
To quench his thirst with that inebrious cup, 
Which indigested hee had belched up : 
As if the heavenly power had thus ordain'^d 
Proftiee expence should be with want restrained. 
And marke the unresisted hand of heaven. 
That whatsoever talent it hath given. 
Of wit or wealth, it is to some good end, 
To *praise his God, or to relieve his friend : 
But he that still in idle waste is found. 
Is worse then hee that hid it in the ground. 



THE YOUNG GALLANT'S WHIRLIGIG. 139 

I that have sense of blessings and of woe. 
In my lifers compasse yet did never know 
An epicurious and disordred minde 
Want his affliction in the selfe-same kinde]; 
For drunkennesse they thirsting haye aoquirM, 
And wanted meate, when they have much desirM ; 
In stead of health, by fevers they shall melt ; 
Far wandring, want of liberty is felt. 
Thus, every act hath its opposing ill, 
Inflicted on it by the Highest will. 

This Gallants circuit, and itineration, 
Is almost finisht in a lower station, 
Whose meagre body pinde away with griefe, 
(For want of seasonable friends reliefe) 
Howerly watchoth when the day shall come 
To lay his body in an earthly tombe : 
Yet oftentimes hope doth awake his spirit. 
And tells him one day yet hee shall inherit 
His freedome, and release ; which being done, 
Another course he doth intend to run, 
So moderate and grave, that by the power 
Of Him that sits in the immortall tower, 
His second life hatcht by supemall fire. 
Cooperating with a true desire 
To rectifie his former follies past. 
Shall make him shine a brighter star at last. 

Epilogvs, 

You blyth yong nifflers that do looke so big, 
Laugh at the precepts of this Whirligigg ; 
Mock on with safetie both yourselves and me, 
Foster your pleasures whilst the golden tree 
Beares fruit enough ; glory in what you may. 
Till lusty youth is vanished away ; 



140 THE DIGGERS OF WARWICKSHIRE. 

Sport like the wanton fiie about the light, 
Untill your glorious wings be burned quite ; 
Dance like the fish upon the gentle brooke, 
Until] you swallow both the baite and hooke ; 
Play with the pitfall till you unaware. 
Are clapt up fast, or tangled in a snare ; 
Doe what you please, no counsell He bestow 
On those whose pregnant wits doe over-flow. 
But leave them to the mercie of their fate. 
To know themselves before it be too late, 
For this by true experience I doe finde. 
Misery, the salve to cure a hau<];hty minde. 
This epitaph if any doe deny, 
• May one day prove his weeping elegie. 

Desine plura,'puer, et quod nunc instat, agamus ; 
Carmina turn, melius cum venerit ipse, canemus.^ 



SECTION XV. THE DIGGERS OF WARWICKSHIRE. 

The following curious paper appears to have been written 
early in the reign of James I., and seems worthy of preserva- 
tion in connexion with a subject in which our great dramatist 
is supposed, with great probability, to have interested himself. 
The original is contained in MS. Harl. 787, art. 11. 

The Diggers of Warwickshire to all other Diggers. 

LouingfFriends and subjects, all under one renowned Prince, 
for whom we pray longe to continue in his most royall estate, 
to the subuerting of all those subjects, of what degree soeuer 
y^ haue or would depriue his most true hartedComunalty both 
from life and Ijruinge. Wee, as members of y* whole, doe 
feele y* smart of these incroaching Tirants, w**» would grinde 

^ The words and phrases in this tract which require explanation will 
be found in my ** Dictionary of Archaisms.** 



THE DIGGERS OF WARWICKSHIRE. 141 

our flesh upon y^ whetstone of pouerty, and make our loyall 
hearts to faint w*^ breathing, so y* they may dwell by thera- 
selues in y« midst of theyr heards of fatt weathers. It is not 
unknowne unto yo^ selues y* reason why these mercyless men 
doe resist w*^ force ag** our good intents. It is not for y* good 
of our most gracious soueraigne, whom we pray God y* longe 
he may reygne amongst us, neyther for y« benefitt of y« Com- 
munalty, but onely for theyr owne priuate gaine, for there is 
none of y«" but doe taste y« sweetness of our wantes. They 
haue depopulated and ouerthrown whole townes, and made 
therof sheep pastures, nothing profitable for our Gomonwealth, 
ffor y* comon fBelds being layd open, would yeeld as much 
comodity, besides y« increase of Come, on w«*» standes our life. 
But if it should please Grod to w^drawe his blessing in not 
prospering y« fruites of y« Earth but one yeare (w*** Godd for- 
bidd) there would a worse, and more fearful! dearth happen then 
did in K. Ed. y* seconds tyme, when people were forced to eat 
Catts and doggs flesh, and women to eate theyr owne children. 
Much more wee could giue you to understand, but wee are 
perswaded y* you your selues feele a part of our greiuances, 
and therfore need not open y« matter any plainer. But if you 
happen to shew your force and might ag"* us, wee for our 
partes neitlier respect life nor lyuinge ; for better it were in 
such' case wee manfully dye, then hereafter to be pined to 
death for want of y* w*^^ these deuouring encroachers do 
seme theyr fatt hogges and sheep withall. fibr God hath 
bestowed upon us most bountifull and innumerable bles- 
sings, and the cheifest is our most gracious and religious 
kioge, who doth and will glory in y« flourishing estate of 
his Cofhunalty. And soe wee leaue you, cofhending you to 
y« sure hold and safeguard of y* mighty Jehoua, both now 
and euermore. 

firom Hampton-field in hast : 
Wee rest as poore Deluers and Daylabourers, 
for y« good of y« Comonwellh till death. 

A. B. C. D. &c. 



SEAL OF SIR THOMAS LUCY. 



SECTION XVI. SEAL OP SIR THOMAS LUCT. 



e4^yna^ 



I am indebted to the liberality of the 
British Archteological Aasociatioii for 
the accompanying copy of the autograph 
and seal of Sir Thomas Lucy, made by 
Mr. Fairholt, the accomplished artist 
of that society. Mr. Fairliolt inform^i 
OS that the original document is in tlie 
possession of Mr. Wheler, of Stratford- 
on-Aron ; it is the preseatatioa of the 
Rev. Richard Hill to the rectory of 
Hampton Lucy, in Warwickshire, in 
the gift of Sir Thomas, and is dated 
Oct. 8, 1 586. Sir Thomas was knighted 
by Qaeen Elizabeth, and thou rebuilt 
the manor house of Chariecote, where 
his &mily had been seated since the days of Bichard I. He 
is celebrated in connexion with Shakespeare and his earl/ 
adventurea ; and the seal is interesting, as it displays the 
three white lucea interlaced, which the dramatist is aconsed of 
ndiouling. Upon the vanes of the house at Gharlscote they 
are also fancifully disposed, the three lucea being interlaced 
between cross crosslets : an engraving of one of these vaneB 
may be sees in Moule''s Heraldry of Fi»h, p. £S, who says 
" the pike of the fishermen is t)ie luce of heraldry j a name 
derived from the old French language Im, or from the Latin 




THE PaOPERTY OP THE SIIAKESPEABES. 141 

ladia ,- aa a charge, it waa very early ueed by lieralds as i 
pun upon the name of Laoy." 



SECTION XVII. THE PROPERTY OP THE SHAKESPEABES. 

The following extracts are taken from a survey of Warwick- 
sliire, made in August, 4 James I. 

Manerium de Bowitiffion, Thouias Shackapeare clamavit tenero 
libere sibi et hEsredibus auia per cartam data,m xxviij. die Jatiu- 
arii, anno regni regis Henriei VIII. xiij. uiiiim niessuagium et 
iiuam virjrataiii terrfe in Losaon End, et unper Joliannis Shack- 
spere,etanteThomje Cryar — viz. Domum niansionale, hortuni, 
stabulum, pomarium, gardinuiii et le liackgide,ia ocoiyatlone dicti 
Thomffl, continent: per Eestimationem j. acram ; clausuni pas- 
tursB Toc&tum le Low/e feald, per jestiniatiouem vj. acras ; 
clausum pasturce vocatum Stocktnfft, per iestimatioaeni vj . acras ; 
clauBum pastuTEB vocatum Well Furlonge, per Ofstimationeni vj. 
acras ; clausum pasture vocatum Bed4 Hill, per iestimationem 
vj. acras; clausum prati ibidem continent: per sestimationera 
vj. acras ; parvum clauBum voeatuni le KisUhi^e per astima- 
tionem j. acram. Ricardua Shackspeare tenet per copiani datam 
vij. die Oetobris anno regni Elizabeths reginw aecundo, unum 
messuagium et dimidium virgatie terrse cum gardino, nuper 
Richardi Shackspeare patris sui et Sliackspeares ex anti<)iia, viz. 
— domum mansionale iij. et diinid : Bpatiomni, hortum j.spatii, 
alium hortum j, epatii, et gardinum continent: per jestinia- 
tiouem j. rodum ; clausum terne ai-abilis eivc pasture vocatum 
l^ HiUet, continent : per testimationem ix. acras et dimidium ; 
pratum vocatum Poole Meadoae continent : per sstimationem 
ij. aciasj ij. parceElas prati continent: per lestimationem 
j. acram, j. rodum. Richardus Shackspeare junior tenet per 
copiam datam xx. die Aprilis anno regni regis Jacobi Anglise 
ij'. et Scotiie 37°. unam parcellara terrsB vocatam tAe little yard, 
cam donio superinde eedificiato, continent : per rostimationem 



I 



144 THE PROPERTY OF THE SHAKESPEARES. 

j. rodum. Johannes Shackspere tenet per copiam datam XTJ. die 
Aprilis anno regni ElizabethsB reginss xlij° unum cotagium et 
unam ^uartam partem virgatsB terrse et gardinum, nuper 
Bichardi Shackspere patris sui et Shacksperes ex antique, viz. 
— domum mansionale ij. spatiorum, hortum ij. spatiorum, et 
dimid: unum stabulum j. spatii, continent : per SBStimationem 
dimidium acrsB ; terras arrabiles sive pasturam vocatam Littie 
/^^»(;^« continent : per aestimationem ij. acras ; terras arrabiles 
sive pasturam vocatam Great Spencers continent : per aastima- 
tionem iij. acras; pratum inclusum continent: per aastima- 
tionem ij. acras. 

Mousley End. Georgius Shackspere tenet per oopiam 
datam xxv. die Octobris anno regni reginae Elizabethse xxxy. 
unum cotagium et duas croflas nuper Johannis Shackspere 
patris sui, et ante Johannis Shackspere avi sui, Shackspeares 
ex antique, viz. — Domum mansionale iij. spatiorum, hortum ij. 
spatiorum, pomarium, gardinum, et curtilagium, continent : per 
sestimationem ij. rodos ; clausum pastursB adjacentem vocatum le 
Hame-doBe continent : per SBstimationem j. acrum ; clausum 
pastursd vocatum Longecrofte^ continent : per sestimationem j. 
acrum ; communis pastura pro una bestia et v. ovibus ; ha- 
benda ad usum praedicti Georgii Shackspeare, et Jane, uxoris 
ejus, et hsBredum Georgii de corpore praedictsB Jane, &c. 

Loteston End, Thomas Shackspeare senior tenet per 
copiam datam secundo die Junii anno regni reginsd Marias 
prime, unam croftam in Lowston-end nuper Beeves, viz. — unam 
croflam pastursB sive arrabilis vocatam BrochaUe per »stima- 
tionem vij. acras. 

Mowdee End. Thomas Shackspeare senior tenet per 
copiam datam vj. die Aprilis anno regni Beginaa Elizabetlue 
xxxix. et per copiam datam xv. die Aprilis anno regni Begins^ 
Elizabethae xliiij. unum messuagium et virgatam terrsB cum 
pertinentibus in Mowslee-end, nuper Johannis Shackspeare 
patris sui,*et ante Eirdes, viz. — Domum mansionale iij. spati- 
orum, unum hortum iiij. spatiorum, et alium hortum iiij. spa* 



THESE KKIOHTa WILL HACK, 



145 



tiorum, nnuni le Carthome j. spatii, gardiDum, pomarium et 
uurtikgiam, continent: per sestimationem ij. rodoa; clausDm 
paatur£9 sive arrabilis adjacentem Tocatum te Home Close per 
a.'3timatioDem TJ, acras ; clausum pasturie vocittum le Great 
Oj:[easotr, per Eestiiuationem vij. acraa; clausum pasturje vo- 
catum le Little Oxlmeow per xstimatiouem iiij. acras ; pratuni 
vocatum Oxleaeow Meadoiee per festimatioiiem iij. acras ; clausum 
paaturjB vocatumiiH&iftfiAffT^'Wperffistimationemiiij.acrae ; 
clausum pastura; vocatum Great Netherfeild per aeatiinationem 
iiij. acras ; clausum pasturte vocatum Greate Hill per satima- 
tiooom iiij. acras ; clausum pasture vocatum Little Hill per 
»stimationem iij. acraa. 

Kin^n. Thomas Shackspeare tenet per copiam datam 
vicesimo die Octobria annis regnorum Philippi et Mariie 
qninto et sexto, unum toflum et tres clausa pastur:^ cum 
parte in Kyngton, nuper Willelmi Mathew et ante Joiiauuis 
Mathew, viz, — unum hortum ij, spatiorum, continent: per 
estimat. long : xvj. ped. et lat. xvj. ped. ; clauaum pastune sive 
arr: vocatum Overkington per jestimationem iiij. aeraa ; clau- 
sum pastune eivo arrabilis vocatum Netheriington per ^itima- 
tionem v. acras. 

Stratford super Avon. Unfortunately, the entries for the 
name of William Shakespeare are left blank ; and the only 
information we gather is, that he paid two shillings a-year for 
certain heriots or fines. 



SECTION XVin. THESE KSIGHTS WILL HACK, 

The following ballad, which is contained in MS. Addit, 
58S2, f. 2U5, affords a good illustration of the opinion of the 
commentators that a well-known passage in the Merry Wives 
of Windsor refeis to the large number of knights made by 
James I. Mr. Hunter ha^ printed another copy of it in his 
History of Hallamshire, but it has not yet been mentioned in 
connexion with this subject. 



4f> TUESE KNIGHTS WILL HACK. 

Veren upon t/ie order/or making knighU 0/ suc/i persons who 
had »fiO per annum in King Jama I. time. 
Come all you farmers out of the countrey. 

Garters, plowmen, hedgers, aud all, 
Tom, Uick, and Will, Raph, Roger, and Humfrey, 

Loave of jour gestures rusticall. 
Bidd all your home-sponne nissetts adue. 
And 8ute yourselves in fashions new : 
Honour invits you to delights : 
Come all to court and be made knights. 

He that hath fortie pounds per anuuni 

Shalbe promoted from the plowe : 
His wife shall take the wall of her grannum, 

Honour is sould soe dog-cheap uow. 
Though thow hast neither good birth nor breeding, 
If thow h&8t money, thow ajt sure of speeding. 

Knighthood in old time was counted an honour, 
Wliich the best spiritts did not disdayue : 

But now it is us'd in soe base a manner. 
That ifs noe crcditt, but rather a ataine : 

Tush, it's noe matter what people doe eay. 

The name of a knight a whole village will away \ 

Sheapherds, leave singing your pastoral! sonnetta. 
And to leame complements shew your eiideavoui-s ; 

Oast of for ever your twoe shilHnge ' bonnett^. 
Cover your coxcombs with tliree poaud beavers. 

Sell carte and tarrboxe new coaches to buy. 

Then, "good your worahipp," the vulgar will cry. 

And thus nnto worshipp being advanced, 

Keepe all your tenants in awe with your frownes ; 

' Mr. HuDter'a copy rciuls tenpenni/. 



THESE KNIGHTS WILL HACK. 147 

And lett your rents be yearly inhaunced, 

To buy your new-moulded maddams * new gownes. 
Joan, SLsse, and Nell, shalbe all ladified, 
Instead of hay-carts, in coaches shall ryde. 

Whatever you doe, have a care of expenses, 

In hospitality doe not exceed : 
Greatnes of followers belongeth to princes : 

A coachman and footmen are all that you need : 
And still observe this, let your servants meate lacke, 
To keepe brave apparel upon your wives backe. 

^ " Great Ladyes," Mr. Hunter*s MS. There are several variations 
in the two copies, and it should be observed that Mr. Hunter*s is dated 
16«^0, and is said to have been written " on account of King Charles the 
First raising money by knighthood." Mr. Hunter*8 MS. has also the 
following additional stanza : — 

Now to conclude, and shutt up my sonnett, 
Leave of the cart, whipp, hedge-bill and flaile. 

This is my counsell, thinke well upon it, 
Knighthood and honor are now putt to saile. 

Then make haste quickly, and lett out your farmes, 

And take my advise in blazing your armes. 
Honor invites, &c. 



THE END. 



FREDERICK SHOBBRL, JUNIOR, 
PRINTKR TO UIS ROYAL lUGHMESS PRINCE ALBERT, 
51, HUPART STRBBT, HITMARKET, LONDON. 



::*t 






THE MORAL PLAY 



WIT AND SCIENCE, 



EAKIT POCTICAL MISCEILAHIES. 

FROM AS rXPrBLlSHED MAsrscBin. 

EDITED BT 

JAMES OKCHARD HALLIWKLL, ESQ., F.R.S., 

F.S.A^ HON. H.B.I.A., HON. H.B.S.L., ETC. 




LONDON: 
PRINTED FOR THE SHAKESPEARE SOCIETY. 



F. Sboberl, Jun^ Printer to II.R.H.princ* Albert, Hoperi Street, HAjDiarket. 



*» ■ 



ccn 



THE SHAKESPEAKE SOCIETY. 



THE EARL OF ELLESMERE. 

THE EARL OF CLARENDO', G.C.B. 

THE EARL OF GLENOALL. 

THE EARL HOWE. 

THE RT. HON. LORD BBAYBRODKE. 

THE RT. HON. LORD LEIGH. 

THOMAS AMYOT, ESQ., F.R.S. 

WILLIAM AYRTON, ESQ., F.E.8., F.8.A. 

BAYLE BERNARD, ESQ. 

THE RrCillT HON. THE VICE-CHANCELLOR SIR JAMES 

KNIGHT BRUCE, P.R.3., F.S.A. 
J. PAYNE COLLIER, ESQ., TREA3. 8.A., DIRECTOR. 
BOLTON CORNEY, ESQ. 
PETER CUNNINGHAM, ESQ., TREASURER. 
JOHN FORSTEB, ESQ. 
J. O. HALLFWELL, ESQ., F.R.9., F.8.A. 
THE REV, WILLIAM HARNESS. 
JAMES HEYWOOD, ESQ., M.P., F.R.S., F.S.A. 
SIR. E. BULWER LYTTON, BART. 
WILLIAM C. MACREADY, ESQ. 
J. H. MABKLANDj ESQ., F.R..8., F.S.A. 
JOHN OSENFORD, ESQ. 
T. J. PETTIGBEW, ESQ., P.R.S., F.S.A. 
J. R. PLASCHE, ESQ., F.S.A. 
SERJEANT TALFOURD, M.P., D.C.L. 
WILLIAM J. THOMS, ESQ., F.S.A. 
F. GUEST TOMLINS, ESQ., SECRETARY. 
THOMAS WRIGHT, K5Q., F.S.A. 



The Council of the Shakespeare Society desire it to be undentood 
that they are not answerable for any opinions or observations that 
may appear in the Society*8 publications; the Editors of the several 
works being alone responsible for the same. 




Accident and the eccentricities of Fame Lave now, 
after a lapse of three centuries, consented to phice a 
laurel, such as it is, around the hrow of one Jolm Red- 
ford, who in the reign of Henry VIII. composed a 
dramatic piece involving the union of two syTobolical 
characters, Wit and Science, a moral play of con- 
siderahle interest in the history of our drama. Yet 
Redford owes this testimony rather to tlie raiity of 
productions of a similar kind, and to the destruction 
of the works of his contemporaries, than to gi'eat in- 
trinsic merits of his own; but his work, preserved hi 
a single manuscript, one of the few records of the 
early stage that have descended to our times, has been 
appealed to by our dramatic lustorian' as a "very 
singidar performance ;" and it is therefore presumed 
that few who are iuterested in such matters will not 
be thankful for our attempt to make it generally 
accessible. 

There is, however, httle, if anything, in the con- 
struction of Bedford's play to distinguish it from the 
other moralities of the same period. The dialogue in 
' Collier's Hiatofy of Dramatic Poetry, ii., 343. 



I 



not in some respects without humour, but the poetry 
is too contemptible to be i)atiently endured. The 
"old-fashioned wit" for which a later writer sneered 
at Shakespeare is here exhibited in ftdl force, perhaps 
somewhat diflacult to be appreciated by a modem 
reader, but many portions were no doubt effective at 
the peiiod at which tlie drama appeared ; and, among 
these, the scene between Idleness and Ignorance, in 
which the former attempts an educational episode, 
although tediously prolonged, may easily be imagined 
as one which was highly relished by our less critical 
ancestors.' 

The manuscript which contains this play is pro- 
bably contemporary with tlie author, but it is unfor- 
timately imperfect, a circmnstance which has deprived 
us of all but a few lines of two other interludes. It 
belonged to the late B. H. Bright, Esq., and was sold 
at the auction-sale of his maimscripts in Jime, 1844, 
for £15. Besides Bedford's play, there is a coUectioii 
of songs by John HejTvood, and others, of consider- , 
able interest to the poetical antiquary, all of wliich I 
ai-e printed in the following pages ; a copy of the en* I 
tire manuscript being thus presented to the reader: [ 
Some of these ballads are remarkably curious, and \ 
all of them belong to a period at which the reliques 
of that class of composition arc exceedingly rare and 
difficidt to be met with. The poem on the miseries 

' A mora] pliy of " The Aluriagc of Wit and Science " wm publnhed j 
about the year ISTD. It entirely diScrs from the piece here given, bn 
Mr. Collier says the later nriter is indebted to Ii«dford for the whole o 
the allegory. 



of singuig boys, and tlie punishment inflicted upon 
them hy their master, is exceedingly interesting; 
and the value of the early versions of the "Hunt's 
up," and the "Willow Song," as illustrations of our 
early di'aniatists, are too obvious to require comment. 
The others are by no means devoid of interest, and 
perhaps add new names to tJie list of EngUsh poets 
of the sixteenth century. Thi*ee of the ballads are by 
John Thome, two of which appear to be original ver- 
sions of others by the same author, printed in the 
"Paradise of Dayntie Devises." Thomas Prideaux 
may be the same person who wrote an elegy on 
Bonner, printed in Sir John Hariugton's "Brief View 
of the State of the Church of England," but I ques- 
tion whether the M8. is not of too early a date to 
warrant that supposition. Miles Huggard was a 
tradesman of London, in the seiTice of Queen Mary, 
and the author of several pieces besides what is here 
ascribed to him. He was a virulent opposer of the 
Reformation. " Master Knyglit " is, I suppose, the 
Edward Kniglit wlio has verses prefixed to Munday's 
"Mirroui- of MutabiUtie," 1579; and perhaps a little 
research would enable us to identify these names with 
accuracy. Otiier copies of several of the ballads may 
most likely be discovered in similar collections, with 
notes tliat may lead to the discovery of the writers. 
In this way, one of the anonymous poems has been 
traced to Edwards, a native of Somersetshire, and one 
of the singing-men of Queen Elizabeth's chapel. 

No biographical particulars of Bedford appear to 
have been published, altliough most probably many 



notices of him are preserved in tlie voluminous r 
at the Rolls' Houee Record Office, and at the Chapter 
House. If, however, we are to trust some writers 
wlio deal in geueralization, aud who seem to forget 
that, hy the iucessaut collection of miiiutije, informa- 
tion of real value is almost invariably elicited,' it 
would be waste of time to coUect any crumbs that 
may there be hidden. And, indeed, I am obliged to 
confess that the time aud patience required for the 
faithfiil prosecution of such inquiries can scarcely be 
willingly expended on names of inferior note ; for it 
requires no small exercise of self-denial to tear one's 
self away from the tomes of Marlowe, Shakespeare, 
and Jonson, to be choked for weeks together by musty 
rolls of ancient vellum, or to wade through centuries 
of indices. This is a seiTice I liave compelled myself j 
to perform for Sliakespeare, but can we name one 
otiier writer whose personal history is sufficiently im- 
portant to be purchased at so dear an expense?* 
Some such consideration haa led to tlie abandou- 

' Thus, for instance, nothing can be more ctearljr proved than Shake- 
speare's continual desire of accumulation, but the fact is established on 
(locumcats, aay one of which singly would pos^^css no alisolute value. 
Will any one venture to say that we have not here an important develop- 
ment of character ? 

* Ben Jonson perhaps may be nearly an exception, and many score of 
curious notices relating to him are preserved in the Record Offices. A 
new life of Rare Ben, carefully illustrated from such sources, would be a 
valuable addidon to our biographical series. The MSS. in the Lord 
Chamberlain's Office would also deserve a careful cxaniinatioti for such » 
purposej for, although they certainly afford no information respecting 
Shakespeare, tht names of Jonson, Inigo Joucs, and other eminent 
of the period, arc of fnijuei 



m men ^H 



ment of any attempt at a biographical sketch of John 
Heywood, although with the certain knowledge tliat 
materials not yet published do exist in the repositories 
just meutioned. It woiUd take some time to collect 
them, and it will be suiEcieut to mention that all 
known particulars ' respecting that dramatist will be 
found in Mr. Fairholt's interesting preface to the Dia- 
logue on Wit and Folly, printed for the Percy Society, 
8vo., 1846, lie appeai-s to have been a native of 
Kent, and to have lived at one time at Nortli Mims, 
in Hertfordshire. His skill in music, and the bril- 
liancy of his conversation, recommended him to the 
patronage of Henry the Eighth, and even drew smiles 
from Queen Mary, to whose privy-chamber he is said 
to have been constantly admitted. One of the anec- 
dotes related of him illustrates a passage in Shake- 
speare. "Wlien Queen Mary told Hey wood that 
the priests must forego their wives, he merrily an- 
swered, ' Then your grace must allow them k-mam,, 
for the clergy cannot live without sauce.' " The witti- 
cisms which foiTuerly passed on tliis unfortunate word 
would fill a volume, but here was a joke scm'cely be- 
tittuig a zealous Catliohc, and it is therefore most 
jtrobably apocryphal. Another anecdote is told on 
tlie authority of the sage Camden. Heywood being 
asked by Queen Mary, " Wliat wind lilew him to the 



' In a MS. discovered by Mr. Collier in the collection of the Earl of 
Ellesmere, it ia stated that Heywood was a native of Eeat. According 
to Bale, he was a citizen of Loadon. He was alive in IS76, the c< 

aasertiou that he died almut 15G5 being altogether 
iu a loose stalemeot made by Anthony Wood. 



r, originatiue 



PREFACE. 



Court ?" he answered, " Two, specially ; the one to see 
your Majestie.'^ " We thank you for that," said the 
Queen ; "but, I pray you, what is the other ?" " That 
your grace," said he, " might see me !" 



CONTENTS 





PAGE 


1. The Play of Wit and Science 


1 


2. Fragment of an Tnterlude 


65 


3. A Poem on the Grace of God . 


ib. 


4. Song of Eyer or Never . . . . 


57 


5. The Maiden's Lamentation 


58 


6. In Praise of Virtue . . . . 


60 


7. The Sufficiency of Grace 


61 


8. Lamentation of Boys Learning Prick-song 


62 


9. A Moral Version of the Hunt is Up 


65 


10. Nolo Mortem Peccatoris 


68 


11. Fragment of an Interlude 


73 


12. Fair Words make Fools Fun 


74 


13. Sleep Compared with Death 


76 


14. Invocation to Good Actions 


77 


15. Song against Idleness 


79 


16. Long have I been a Singing Man 


80 


17. Give Place to Honest Recreation 


82 


18. The Song of Exceeding Measure . 


83 


19. Song of Welcome Mine Own 


84 


20. Will and Power . . . . 


86 


21. Song of a Green Willow 


ib. 


22. The Lamentation of Dido 


88 


23. Arise, Arise, I say .... 


89 


24. The Pleasure of Godliness 


92 


25. The Goodness of all God*s Gifts 


97 


26. The Smfulness of Man .... 


100 


27. In Praise of Learning and Virtue 


102 


28. Be Merry, Friends .... 


104 


29. My Constancy in Love 


106 



Xii CONTENTS. 

PAGE 

30. O Hear Me, Lord, and Grant Mercy .107 

31. On Lawful Liberty .... 109 

32. This World is but a Vanity .110 

33. In Praise of a Good Welcome 111 

34. Against Slander and Slanderers . .114 

35. Against Malice and Revenge . 118 

36. Keep Sure a Faithful Heart .120 

37. Notes ...... 122 



THE PLAY 



OF 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 



« « « « « « 1 

Reason. 

Then, in remembrance of Beson, hold yee 
A glas of reson, — wherein beholde yee 
Youre sealfe to youre selfe namely ; when ye 
Cum neere my dowghter Science, then see 
That all thynges be cleane and trycke abowte ye, 
Least of sum sloogyshnes she myght dowte ye ; 
Thys glas of Reason shall show ye all ; 
Whyle ye have that, ye have me and shall ; 
G^t ye foorth, now ! Instruccion, fare well ! 

Instruccion. 
Syr, God keepe ye ! 

[Heere all go out save Resone. 

^ The MS. is unfortunately imperfect, and the first part of the 
interlude is not to be found. Several leaves of music by Bedford 
are preserved at the commencement of the volume. ' The songs 
belonging to this play occur in the original amongst the po^ms at 
the end, and the arrangement of the MS. is here strictly followed. 



Tin: pi.AY (IF 

Reson. 

AnJ ye all front parell ! 

If anye man now marvell that I 

Woolde bestowe my dowghter tliua baselye. 

Of truth I, Eeaon, am of thys mjnde, — 

Where partyes together be eiiclyndo 

By gyftos of graeea to love ecli other. 

There let theoi joyne the tone wyth the toother ; 

Thya Wj-t such gyftea of graces bath in hym. 

That niakth my dowghter to wyeh to wyn hym ; 

Yoong, paynefiill, tractable and uapax, 

Thes be ^VJtes gyftea wliych Science doth axe : 

And as for her, as soone as Wyt sees her, 

For all the world be woold not then lecse her. 

Wherfore syiia they both be so meete matches 

To love cch other — wtrawe for the patches 

Of worldly mucke ! Syence hath inowghe 

For them both to ly ve ; yf Wyt be throwh© 

Stryken in love, a^ he synes hath showde, 

I dowte not my dowghter well beatowde. 

Thende of hya jomay wyll aprove all ; 

yf Wyt hold owte, no more proofe can fall ; 

And that the better liold out ye may, 

To refresh my soone Wyt now-by the way. 

Sum solas for hym I wyll provyde ; 

An honest woman dwellth here besyde. 

Whose name is cald Honest Recreacion : 

As men report, for Wytes consolacion : 

She hath no peero ; yf AVyt were halfe deade. 

She cowld revyve hym ; thus is yt aed, 

Wherfore yf monye or love can byre her, 

To hye after Wyt I wyll deayre her. 



C'oNFVDENfF. rumt/i in witJi a pi/elure o/Wyt. 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 3 

Ah ! syr, what tyme of day yst ? who can tell ? 

The day ya uot far past I wot well, 

For I have gone faat, and yet I see 

I am far from where as I wold be. 

Well ! I have day inowgh yet I spye, 

Wherfore, or I pas hens, now must 1 

See thys same token Iieore, a plaj-ne case. 

What Wyt hath sent to my ladyea grace. 

Now wyll ye see a goodly pycture 

Of Wyt hymsealfe, hys owne image sure — 

Face, bodye, armes, legges, both lym and joynt, 

As lyke hym as can be in every poynt ; 

Yt lakth but lyfe, well I can hym thanke ! 

Thys token in deede shall make sum cranke, 

For what wyth thys pycture so well laverde. 

And what wyth those sweete woordea so well saverd 

Dyatyllyng from the mowth of Confydenee, 

Shall not thye apese the liart of Science I 

Yes, I thanke (tod I am of that nature 

Able to compaa thys matter sure, 

As ye shall see now, who lyst to marke yt, 

How neately and feately I shall warke yt. 

Wyt cuifUh h without Instruccion, vytk Study, &c. 

Now, syrs, cum on ; whyche is the way now, 
Thys way or that way ? Studye, how aay you ! 
Speake, Dylygence, wliyle he hath bethowghte hym, 

Dylygence. 
That way belyke most usage hath wrowht hym. 



Ye, hold your pease, best ! we here now stay, 
For, Instruccion, I lyke not that waye. 



the play of 

Wyt. 
Instruccion, Study e, I weene we have lost hym, 

Instruccion cumth in. 

Indeade, foil gently abowte ye have tost hym ! 
What, mene you, Wyt, styll to delyghte 
Runnynge before thus styll owt of syghte, 
And therby out of your way now quyghte ? 
What doo ye here excepte ye woold fyghte ? 
Gum back agayne, Wyt, for I must choose ye 
An esyer way then thys, or ells loose ye. 

Wyt. 
What ayleth thys way I parell here is none. 

Instruccion, 

But as much as your lyfe standth upon ; 
Youre enmye, man, lyeth heere before ye, 
Tedyousnes, to brayne or to gore ye ! 

Wyt. 

Tedyousnes, doth that tyrant rest 

In my way now ! Lord, how am I blest 

That occacion so nere me sturres. 

For my dere hartes sake to wynne my spurrea ! 

Ser, woold ye fere me with that fowle theeafe, 

Wyth whome to mete my desyre is cheafe I 

Instruccion. 

And what woold ye doo, you havyng nowghte 
For your defence ? for thowgh ye have cawghte 
Oarmentes of science upon your backe, 
Yet wepons of science ye do lak. 



wyt and science. 

Wyt. 
What wepons of science shuld I have I 

Instruccion. 

Such as all lovers of ther looves crave, 
A token from ladye Science, wherbye 
Hope of her favor may spryng, and therbye 
Comforte, whych is the weapon dowteles 
That must serve youe agaynst Tedyousnes. 

Wyt. 

Yf hope or comfort may be my weapon, 
Then never with Tedyousnes mee threten ; 
For as for hope of my deere hartes fever, 
And therby comfort inowghe I gather. 

Instruccion. 

Wyt, here me ! tyll I see Confydence 
Have browght sum token from ladye Science, 
That I may feele that she favorth you. 
Ye pas not thys way, I tell you trew ! 

Wyt. 
Whych way than ? 

Instruccion. 

A playner way I told ye, 

Out of danger from youre foe to hold ye. 

Wyt. 

Instruccion, here me ! or my swete hart 
Shall here that Wyt from that wreche shall start 
One foote, thys bodye and all shall cracke ! 
Foorth I wyll, sure, what ever I lacke ! 



the play of 

Dylygence. 
Yf ye lacke weapon, syr, here is one. 

Wyt. 

Well sajde, Dylygence, thowe art alone ! 
How say ye, syr, is not here weapon ! 

Instruccion. 

Wyth that weapon your enmy never threton. 
For wythowt the retume of Confydence, 
Ye may he slayne, sure, for all dylygence ! 

Dylygence. 

God syr, and Dylygence, I tell you playne, 
Wyll play the man or my master be slayne i 

Instruccion. 
Ye, but what sayth Stndye no wurde to thysf 

Wyt. 

No, syr, ye knowe Studyes ofyce is 
Meete for the chamber, not for the feeld ; 
But tell me, Studye, wylt thow now yeld ! 

Studye. 
My hed akth sore, I wold wee retume. 

Wyt. 

Thy hed ake now, I wold it were bume ; 
Gum on, walkyng may hap to ese the. 

Instruccion. 
And wyll ye be gone, then, wythout mee ? 



Wyt. 
Ye, by my fe)'th, except ye liy ye after, 
Begou shall know yee are but an hafter. 

Exceat WyT, Study, and Dylyqence, 
Instruccion. 
Well, go your way ! wlian your father Beaon 
Heertli how ye obay me at thja Beason, 
I tbynke he wyll thynke hys dowghter now 
May niary another man for you. 
When wyteB stand so in ther owne coneeite, 
Beet let them go tyll pryde at hys heyp;hte 
Tume and east them downe liedlong agayne, 
Aa ye ahall see provyd by thya Wyt playne. 
Yf Boson hap not to cum the rather, 
Hys owne dystruccion he wyll sure gather ; 
Wherefore to Beson wyll 1 now get me, 
Levyng tliat charge whereabowt he set niee. 

F-rreat I(J3TRi:cciON. 

Tedyousnes cumth in with a ri/ser over At/e hed. 



Oh the bodye of me ! 

What kaj-tj-rea be those 
That wj-11 not once flee 

From Tediousues nose ! 
But thus dyseee me 

Out of my nest. 
^Vhen I shoold eae tnee 

Thya body to rest. 
That Wyt, that vyiayue, 

That wreoh, a shame take hyiii ! 
Yt is he plaj-ne 

That thus bold doth make liym 



8 THE PLAY OF 

Wythowt my lycence 

To stalke by my doore, 
To that drab Syence, 

To wed that whore ! 
But I defye here, 

And for that drabes sake, 
Or Wyt cum ny her, 

The knaves hed shall ake : 
Thes bones, this mall 

Shall bete hym to dust, 
Or that drab shall 

Once quench that knaves lust ! 
But, hah ! mee thynkes 

I am not halfe lustye, 
Thes jontes, thes lyukes, 

Be ruffe, and halfe rustye ; 
I must go shake them. 
Supple to make them ! 
Stand back, ye wrechys ! 
Beware the fechys 
Of Tediousnes, 
Thes kaytyves to bles ! 
Make roome, I say, 
Bownd evry way, 
Thys way, that way. 
What cares what way ? 
Before me, behynd me, 
Bownd abowt wynd me ! 
Now I begyn 
To swete in my skin ; 
Now am I nemble 
To make them tremble ; 
Pash hed, pash brayne, 
The knaves are slayne, 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 

All that I hyt ! 
Where art thow, Wyt ! 
Thow art but deade, 
Of goth thy hed 
A the fyrst bio ! 
Ho! ho! ho! ho! 

Wyt spekyth at the doore. 
Studye ! 

Studye. 
Here, syr! 

Wyt. 
How, doth thy hed ake i 

Studye. 
Ye, God wot, syr, much payne I do take. 

Wyt. 

Dylygens ! 

Dylyoence. 
Here, syr, here ! 

Wyt. 

How dost thow ? 

Doth thy stomak serve the to fyght now ! 

Dylyoence. 

Ye, syr, wyth yonder wrech, a vengans on hym 
That thretneth you thus ! set evyn upon hym ! 

Studye. 
Upon hym, Dylygence ! better nay. 



10 the play of 

Dylygence. 
Better nay, Studye ! why shoold we fray ? 

Studye, 
For I am wery, my hed akth sore.* 

Dylygence. 

Why, folysh Studye, thow shalt doo no more. 
But ayde my master wyth thy presens. 

Wyt. 

No more shalt thow nether, Dylygence ; 
Ayde me wyth your presence both you twayne, 
And for my love myselfe shall take payne. 

Studye. 
Syr, we be redye to ayde you so. 

Wyt, 

I axe no more, Studye. Gum then, goe. 

Tedyiousnes rytyth up. 
Why, art thow cum ! 

Wyt. 

Ye, wrech, to thy payne ! 

Tediousnes. 
Then, have at the ! 

Wyt. 
Have at the agayne ! 

Here Wyt fallyth downe and dyeth. 
' This and the two preTious speeches are erased in the original MS' 



WYT AND 9CIENCK. 



Tediocsses. 



Lye thow tliere ! now have at ye, kaytyves ! 

Do ye fle, ifaytL ! a, horeaon theves ! 

By Mahowndes bones, had tlie wrechea taryd, 

Ther neckes wylhowt Iiedea they aliowld have caryd ! 

Ye, by Mahowudes nose, myglit 1 have patted them, 

In twenty gobbetes I ehowld have sqnatt«d them, 

To teche the knaves to cum neere the snowte 

Of TedioiLsnea ! walke fiirder abowte, 

I trow now they wyll ; and aa for tliee, 

Thow wylt no more now troble mee I 

Yet, lest the knave be not safe inowghe, 

The horeaon shall bero me another kufie .' 

Now, ly styll, kaytyv, and take thy rest, 

Whyle I take myne in myne owne nest. 

Exceat Tedy. 

Here cumtli in Honest Recreacion, Cumfort, 
QdyCKNES, atid StreNght, and go and hiele abowt 
Wyt, and at the last verce reysytk iym ttp upon Ayg/eete, 
and so make an end; and than Honest Recreacion 
taytA aa/olowytA. 

Honest Recreacion. 
Now, Wyt, how do ye ? wyll ye be luatye J 

Wyt. 
The lustier for you needea be must 1. 

Honest Recreacion. 
Be ye all hole yet after your fall I 

Wyt. 
As ever I was, thankes to you all .' 



12 THE PLAY OF 

Beson cummth in^ and sayth asfolowyth. 

Ye myght thanke Beson that sent them to ye. 
But syns the have that the shoold, do ye 
Send them home, soonne, and get ye forwarde. 

Wyt. 

Oh ! Father Beson, I have had an hard 
Ghance synce ye saw me. 

Beson.* 

I wot well that 1 

The more to blame ye,* when ye wold not 

Obay Instniccion, as Beson wyld ye. 

What raarvell, thowgh Tedyousnes had kyld ye ! 

But let pas now, synce ye ar well agayne, 

Set forward agayne Syence to attayne. 

Wyt. 

Good &ther Beson, be not to hastye ; 
In honest cumpany no tyme wast I. 
I shall to youre dowghter all at leyser. 

Beson. 

Ye, Wyt, is that the grete love ye rayse her ! 
I say yf ye love my dowghter Science, 
Qtei ye foorth at once, and get ye hence. 

Al go out save Honest [Becreacion]. 
Here Comport, Quiknes, and Strength go out. 

Wyt. 
Nay, by Saynt George, they go not all yet ! 

* The MS. reads, Reson cumth in. 

' This sentence is repeated in the MS. by mistake, but part of 
the previous line seems to be wanting. 



wyt and science. 13 

Reson. 
No, wyll ye dysobey Beson, Wyt ? 

Wyt. 

Father Beson, I pray ye content ye, 
For we parte not yet. 

Beson. 

Well, Wyt, I went ye 
Had bene no such man as now I see. 
Fare well ! 

Ewceai. 

Honest Becreacion. 
He ys angry. 

Wyt. 

Ye, let hym be, 
I doo not passe ! 
Gum now, a basse ! 

Honest Becreacion. 

Nay, syr, as for bassys. 
From hence none passys. 
But as in gage 
Of mary-age. 

Wyt. 

Mary, evyn so. 
A bargayne, lo ! 

Honest Becreacion. 

What, wythout lycence 
Of ladye Science ? 



14 the play of 

Wyt. 
Shall I tell you trothe ? 
I never lovde her. 

Honest Beoreacion. 

The common voyce goth 
That manage ye movd her. 

• 

Wyt. 

Promyse hath she none, 
Yf we shalbe wone, 
Wythowt mo wurdes grawnt. 

Honest Becbeacion. 

What, upon this soodayne, 
Then myghte ye playne 
Byd me avawnt ! 
Nay, let me see. 
In honest^ 
What ye can doo 
To wyn Beoreacion ; 
Upon that probacion, 
I grawnt therto. 

Wyt. 

Small be my dooinges, 
But apt to all thynges 
I am I trust. 

Honest Beoreacion. 
Can ye dawnce than ? 

Wyt. 

Evyn as I can, 
Prove me ye must. 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 1 5 

HONESTE ReCREACYON. 

Then for a whyle 

Ye must excyle. 

This garment cum bryng. 

Wyt, 

In deede, as ye say, 

This cumbrus aray 

Woold make Wyt slumbryng. 

Honest Recreacion. 

Yt is gay geere 
Of Science cleere ; 
Yt seemth her aray. 

Wyt. 

Whose ever it were, 
Yt lythe now there. 

Honest Recreacion. 
Qx) to, my men, play. 

Here they dawnce^ and in the mene whyle Idellnes 
eumth in and sytth dawne^ and when the galyard ii doone^ 
Wyt sayth as/otawyth^ andso/alyth d&wne in Idellnes 
lap. 

Wyt. 

Sweete hart, gramercys ! 

Honest Recreacion. 
Why, whether now have ye doone synce ! 

Wyt. 

Ye, in fayth, with wery bones ye have possest me. 
Among thes damselles now wyll I rest me. 



16 the play of 

Honest Recreacion. 
What, there ? 

Wyt. 
Ye, here, I wylbe bo bold. 

Idlenes. 
Ye, and wellcum by hym that God sold ! 

Honest Becreacion. 
Yt ys an harlot, may ye not see ? 

Idlenes. 
As honest a woman as ye be ! 

Honest Recreacion. 
Her name is Idlenes. Wyt, what mene you ! 

Idlenes. 
Nay, what meane you to scolde thus, you queue, you! 

Wyt. 

Ther, go to ! Lo ! now, for the best game ! 
Whille I take my ese, youre toonges now frame. 

Honest Recreacion. 

Ye, Wyt, by youre feyth, is that youre fitcion ? 
Wyll ye leave me. Honest Recreacion, 
For that common strumpet, Idellnes, 
The verye roote of all vyciousnes ! 

Wyt. 

She sayth she is as honest as ye ; 
Declare yourselves both now as ye be. 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 



Honest Recbeacion. 
What woolde ye more for my declaration, 
Tlien evyn my name, Honest Recreacion J 
And what wold ye more her to exprea 
Then evyn her name to Idlenes, 
Dyntniceion of all that wyth her tarye ! 
Wherfore, eum away, Wyt ; she wyll mar ye ! 

Idelnes. 
Wyll I mar him, drabb ! Tliow, calat, thow ! 
When thow haat mard hym all redye now ! 
Cawlyat thow thyaealfe Honest Recreacion, 
Ordryng a poore man after thys facion. 
To lame hym thus, and make hia lymmes foyle, 
Evyn wyth the awyngyng there of thy tayle t 
The dyvyll set fyre one the, for now must I, 
Idlenca, Iiele hym agayne I spye. 
I must now lull hym, rock hym, and frame hym 
To hys lust agayne, where thow dydat lame hym. 
Am I the roote, sayet thow, of vyciousnes I 
Nay, thow art roote of all vyce rtowteles ! 
Thow art occacion, lo ! of more evyll 
Then I, poore gerle, nay, more then the dyvyll ! 
The dyvyll and hys dam can not devyae 
More devlyshnee then by the doth ryse 
Under the name of Honest Recreacion. 
She, lo ! brj-ngth in her abhominacion ! 
Mark her dawnayng, her tiiaskyng, and mummyng. 
Where more concupyscence then ther cummyng ? 
Her cardyng, her dycyng, dayly and nyghtlye, 
Wherefyndye more falcehod then there! notlyghtly, 
Wyth lyeng and sweryng by no poppetea. 
But toryng fiod in a thowsand gobbetes. 



18 THE PLAY OF 

As for her syngyng, pypyng, and fydlyng, 

What unthryftynes therin is twydlyng ? 

Serche the tayemes, and ye shall here cleere 

Such bawdry as bestes wold spue to heere. 

And yet tkys is kald Honest Becreacion, 

And I, poore Idlenes, abhomynacion. 

But whych is wurst of us twayne, now judg, Wyt, 

Wyt. 
Byrladye, not thow, wench, I judge yet. 

Honest Becbeacion. 

No ! ys youre judgment such then that ye 

Can neyther perseve that best, how she 

Groth abowte to dyceve you, nor yet 

Bemembre how I savyd youre lyfe, Wyt? 

Thynke you her meete wyth mee to compare, 

By whome so manye wytes cury d are ? 

When wyll she doo such an act as I dyd, 

Savynge your lyfe when I you revy ved ? 

And as I savyd you, so save I all 

That in lyke jeoperdy chance to Ml. 

When Tediouanes to grownd hath smytten them. 

Honest Becreacion up doth quyken them, 

Wyth such honest pastymes, sportes, or games. 

As unto myne honest nature frames. 

And not, as she sayth, wyth pastymes suche 

As be abusyd lytell or muche ; 

For where honest pastymes be abusyd, 

Honest Becreacion is reftised. 

Honest Becreacion is present never 

But where honest pastymes be well usyd ever. 

But in deede Idlenes, she is cawse 

Of all such abuses. She, lo ! drawes 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 19 

Her sort to abuse myne honest games, 
And therby full felsly my name defames. 
Under the name of Honest Becreacion 
She bryngth in all her abhomynacion, 
Dystroyng all wytes that her imbrace, 
As youre selfe shall see wythin short space ; 
She wyll bryng you to shamefull end, Wyt, 
Except the sooner from her ye flyt. 
Wherefore, cum away, Wyt, out of her pawse : 
Hence, drabb ! let hym go out of thy clawse ! 

Idlenes. 

Wyll ye get ye hence, or by the Mace 

Thes clawes shall clawe you by youre drabbes face. 

Honest Becreacion. 

Yt shall not neade, syns Wyt lyethe as wone 

That neyther lieerth nor seeth. I am gone ! 

Exeeat. 
Idlenes. 

Ye, so fare well, and well fare thow toonge ! 
Of a short pele this pele was well roong, 
To ryng her hence, and hym fast asleepe. 
As full of sloth as the knave can kreepe. 
How, Wyt, awake ! how doth my babye ! 
Neque 90X neque sensus — byr ladye ! 
A meete man for Idlenes no dowte. 
Hark, my pygg, how the knave dooth rowte ! 
Well, whyle he sleepth in Idlenes lappe, 
Idlenes marke on hym shall I clappe. 
Sum say that Idlenes can not warke, 
But those that so say now let them marke. 
I trowe they shall see that Idlenes 
Can set hersealfe abowt sum busynes, 

c2 



20 THE PLAY OF 

Or, at the lest, ye shall see her tryde, 
Nother idle nor well ocupyde. 
Lo ! syr, yet ye lak another toye ; 
"Wher is my whystell to call my boye ? 

Here she tehystleth, and Ingnorance cumth in. 
I cum ! I cum ! 

Idlenes. 

Goomme on, ye foole ! 

All thys day or ye can cum to scoole. 

Ingnorance. 
Um ! mother wyll not let me cum. 

Idlenes. 

I woold thy mother had kyst thy bum ! 
She wyll never let the thryve, I trow. 
Gum on, goose ; now, lo ! men shall know 
That Idlenes can do sumwhat, ye. 
And play the scoolemystres to, yf neade bee. 
Mark what doctryne by Idlenes cummes. 
Say thy lesson, foole. 

Ingnorance. 

Upon my thummes ? 

Idellnes. 
Ye, upon thy thummes ; ys not there thy name ! 

Ingnorance. 
Yeas. 

Idellnes. 
Go to, than spell me that same. 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 21 

Wher was thou borne ? 

Ingnorance. 
Chwas i-bore in Ingland, mother sed. 

Idlenes. 
In Ingland? 

Ingnorance. 

Yea. 

Idlenes. 

And what's half Ingland ? 

Heeres ing and heeres land, whats tjs ! 

Ingnorance. 
Whats tys ? 

Idellnes. 

Whats tys ? horoson, whats tys ! 
Heeres ing and heeres land, whats tys ! 

Ingnorance. 
Tys my thum ! 

Idellnes. 

Thy thum ? yng, horeson, ing, ing ! 

Ingnorance. 
Yng, yng, yng, yng. 

Idellnes. 
Foorth shal I bete thy narse, now. 

Ingnorance. 
Um, m, m, — 



22 the play of 

Idellnes. 
Shall I not bete thy narse now ? 

Ingnorance. 
Um-um-um ! 

Idellnes. 
Say no, foole, say no. 

Ingnorance. 
Noo, noo, noo, noo, noo ! 

Idellnes. 
Go to, put together yng. 

Ingnorance. 

Yng. 

Idellnes. 
No! 

Ingnorance. 
Noo. 

Idellnes. 
Forth now ! what sayth the dog ? 

Ingnorans. 
Dog barke. 

Idlenes. 
Uog barke I dog ran, horeson, dog ran ! 

Ingnorance. 
Dog ran, horson, dog ran, dog ran ! 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 23 



Idellnes. 
Put together ing. 



Ingnorance. 



Yiig. 



Idellnes. 



No. 



Ingnorance. 



Noo. 



Idellnes. 



Rau. 



Ingnorance. 



Ban. 



t 



Idlenes. 
Foorth now, what seyth. the goose ! 

Ingnorance. 
Lag, lag. 

Idlenes. 

Hys, horson, hys ! 

Ingorance. 
Hys, hys, s-s-s-s. 

Idlenes. 
Go to, put together yng. 

Ingnorance. 

Ing. 



24 TUE PLAY OF 



Idlenes. 



No. 



Ingnorance. 



Noo. 



IDLENES. 



Ban. 



Ingnorance. 



Ban. 



Idlenes. 



Hys. 



Ingorance. 
Hys, 8-S-S-S-8-S. 

Idlenes. 
No, who is a good boy I 

Ingnorance. 
I, I, I, I, I, I. 

Idlenes. 
Go to, put together ing. 

Ingnorance. 
Ing. 

Idlenes. 

No. 

Ingnorans. 

Noo. 



WYT AND SCIENCK. 25 



ll)ELL\K8. 



Ilaii. 



iNGNORANCE. 



llau. 



Idellnes. 



His. 



Ingnorance. 

Hys — s, «, 8, s, 8. 

Idellnes. 
I. 

Ingnorance. 
I. 

Idellnes. 

Iiig, no, rau, his, I. 

Ingnorance. 
lug, no, ran, hys — s-s-s. 

Idlenes. 



I. 



Ingnorance. 



I. 



Idellnes. 



lug. 



Ingnorance. 



Ing. 



26 the play of 

Idkllnes. 
Foorth. 

Ingnorance. 
Hys-8-s-8. 

Idelnes. 
Ye, no, horeson, no ! 

Ingnorance. 

Noo, noo, noo, noo. 

Idlenes. 

Ing, no. 

Ingnorance. 

Ing, noo. 

Idellnes. 
Forth now. 

Ingnorance. 
Hys, S-8-S-S. 

Idellnes. 
Yet agayne ; ran, horeson, ran, ran. 

Ingnorance. 

Ran, horson, ran, ran. 

Idellnes. 
Ran say. 

Ingnorance. 
Ean say. 



wyt and science. 27 

Idlenes. 
Ran, horsou. 

Ingnorance. 
Ban, horeson. 

Idellnes. 
Ran. 

Ingnorance. 
Ran. 

Idellnes. 

Iuci;, no, rAU. 

Ingnorance. 
Ing, no, ran. 

Idellnes. 
Foorth, now, what sayd the goose ! 



Ingnorance. 



Dog barke. 



Idlenes. 
Dog barke ? Hys, horson, hys — s-s-s-s-s. 

Ingnorance. 

Hys — s-s-s-s-s-s . 

Idlenes. 
I. 

Ingnorance. 
Ing,-no,-ran,-hys, I. 



28 THK PLAY OF 

Ing,-no-ran,-hys, I-s-s-s.' 

Il)ELLNt:S. 



I. 



Ingnorance. 



I. 



Idkllneh. 
Howsay8t,iiow,foole,is not there thy name! 

Ingnorans. 
Yea. 

Idellnes. 

Well than, can me that same. 
What hast thow lemd ! 

Ignorance. 
Ich can not tell. 

Idellnes. 

Ich can not tell, thow sayst evyn very well. 
For yf thow cowldst tell, then had not I well 
Towght the thy lesson, whych must be tawghte 
To tell all, when thow canst tell ryghte noght. 

Ingnorance. 
Ich can my lesson. 

Idellnes. 

Ye, and therfore 

Shalt have a new cote, by God I swore ! 

^ This speech should possibly be given to Idleness, but the MS. 
is apparently carelessly written in this place. 



wyt and science. 29 

Ingnorance. 
A new cote ? 

Idellnes. 

Ye, a new cote by and by ; 

Of wyth thys old cote, *' a new cote ^ crye. 

Ingnorance. 
A new cote, a new cote, a new cote. 

Idellnes. 

Pease, horson foole, wylt thow wake hym now ! 
Unbuttun thy cote, foole ; canst thow do nothyng ? 

Ingnorance. 
I note how choold be. 

Idellnes. 

I note how choold be ! a, foole, betyde the ! 
So wysly hyt spekyth ; cum on now, whan. 
Put bak thyne arme, foole. 

Ingnorance. 
Put backe ? 

Idellnes. 

So, lo, now let me see how thys geere 
Wyll trym this jentle man that lyeth heere! 
Ah ! God save hyt, so sweetly hyt doth sleepe ! 
VVhyle on your back thys gay cote can creepe. 
As feete as can be for this one arme. 

Ingnorance. 

Oh ! chani a-cold. 



30 the play of 

Idellnes. 

Hold foole, keepe the warme, 

And cumhjther; hold this hed here; softe now, for wakyn^ 

Ye shall see wone here hrowght in such takynge. 

That he shall soone scantlye knowe hymsealfe. 

Heere is a cote as fyt for this elie 

As it had hene made evyn for this bodye ; 

So yt begynth to looke lyke a noddye ! 

Ingnorance. 
Um-m-m-m — 

Idellnes. 
What aylest now, foole ? 

Ingnorance. 
New cote is gone. 

Idlenes. 
And why is it gone ! 

Ingnorance. 
Twool not byde on. 

Idellnes. 

Twool not byde on ? twoold if it cowlde. 
But maryell it were that byde it shoold : 
Sciens garment on Ingnorance bak ! 
But now lets se, syr, what do ye lak. 
Nothyng but evin to bukell heere this throte. 
So well this Wyt becumthe a fooles cote ! 

Ingnorance. 
He is I now. 



W YT AND SCIENCE. 3 1 



Idellnes. 



Ye, how lyksie him now I 

Is he not a foole as well as thow ! 

I^gnorance. 
Yeas. 

Idellnes. 

Well, than, won foole keepe another ; 
Geve me this^ and take thow that brother. 

Ingnorange. 
Um-m — 

Idlenes. 
Pyke the home, go ! 

Ingnorange. 
Chyll go tell my moother. 

Idellnes. 

Yea, doo ! 

But yet to take my leve of my deere, lo ! 

Wyth a skyp or twayne, heere lo ! and heer lo ! 

And heere agayne ; and now this heele 

To bles his weake brayne ; now, are ye weele 

By vertu of Idellnes blessyng toole, 

Cunjurd from Wyt unto a starke foole ! 

Gonfydenge cunUk in teitA a twoord by his syde^ and 

sayth asfolowyth, 

I seake and seake, as won on no grownde 
Can rest, but lyke a masteries hownde, 



32 THE PLAY OF 

Wandryng all abowt, seakyng his master. 
Alas ! jentle Wyt, I feare the fasster 
Thy my tru servyce clevth unto thee, 
The slacker thy mynd cleevth unto mee. 
I have doone thye message in such sorte, 
That I not onlye, for thy comfort, 
To vanquishe thyne enmy have browght heere 
A swoord of comfort from thy love deere. 
But also fiirder, I have so enclynd her, 
That upon my wurdes she hath assynd her 
In her owne parson half way to meete thee. 
And hytherward she came for to greete thee ; 
And sure, except she be turned agayne, 
Hyther wyll she cum, or be long playne 
To seake to meate the heere in this cost ; 
But now, alas ! thy selfe thow hast lost, 
Or at the least thow wylt not be fownd : 
Alas ! jentle Wyt, how doost thow woonde 
Thy trusty and tru servant, Confydence, 
To lease my credence to ladye Science ? 
Thow lesyst me to, for yf I can not 
Fynd the shortly, lenger lyve I ma not, 
But shortly get me evyn into a comer. 
And dye for sorowe throwhe such a scomer ! 

Exceat. 
Here the cum in with vyols. 

Fame. 

Gum, syrs, let us not dysdayne to do 
That the world hath apoynted us too. 

Favor. 

Syns to serve Science the world hath sent us. 
As the world wylth us, let us content us. 



wyt and science. 33 

Byches. 

Content us we may, synce we be assynde 
To the fayrest lady that lyvth in my mynde. 

WOORSHYP. 

Then let us not stay here muet and mum. 
But tast we thes iustrumentes tyll she cum. 

Here ike eyng Excedynge Meewre.^ 

EXPERYENCE. 

Dowghter, what meanyth that ye dyd not syng ! 

Science. 

Oh, mother, for heere remayuth a thynge. 
Freendes, we thanke you for thes your plesures 
Takyn on us, as chance to us measures. 

WOORSHYPPE. 

Ladye, thes our plesures and parsons too 
Ar sente to you, you servyce to doo. 

Fame. 

Ladye Science, to set foorth your name. 

The world to wayte on you hath sent me Fame. 

Favor. 

Ladye Science, for your vertues most plentye. 
The world to cherysh you Favor hath sent ye. 

Ryches. 

Lady Science, for youre benefytes knowiie, 

The world to mayntayne you Ryches hath thrown ! 

^ This song is given in the latter portion of the manuscript, and 

will be found in the follovdng pages. 

D 



34 THE PLAY OF 

WOORSHYP. 

And as the world hath sent you thes three, 

So he sendth mee,Woorshypp,to avawnee yourdegr^. 

Science. 

I thank the world, but cheefly God be praysed. 
That in the world such love to Science hath raysed ! 
But yet to tell you playne, ye iiij. ar suche 
As Science lookth for, lytell nor muche ; 
For beyng as I am, a lone wooman, 
Neede of your servyce I nether have nor can ; 
But thankyng the world and you for your payn, 
I send ye to the world evyn now agayne. 

WOORSHYPPE. 

Why, ladye, set ye no more store by mee ? 
Woorshypp, ye set nowght by yourselfe I se. 

Fame. 

She setth nowght by Fame, wherby I spye her. 
She carethe not what the world sayth by her. 

Favor. 

She setthe nowght by Favor, wherby I trye her. 
She cary th not what the world sayth or dooth by her. 

Bychbs. 

She setth nowght by Ryches, whych dooth showe 
She careth not for the world ; cum, let us goe ! 

Science. 

In deede sroalle cawse gevyn to care for the worldes &verin 
Seeyng the wyttes of worlde be so waveryng. 



I 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 35 

EXPERYENCE. 

What is the matter, dowghter, that ye 
Be so sad ! open your mynd to mee. 

Science. 

My marvell is no les, my good moother, 

Then my greefe is greate to Bee, of all other. 

The prowde scome of Wyt, soone to dame Nature, 

Who sent me a pycture of hys stature, 

Wyth all the shape of hymselfe there openyng, 

Hys amorous love therby betokenyng, 

Borne toward me in abundant facion ; 

And also fiirder to make ryght relacion 

Of this hys love, he put in commyshion 

Such a messenger as no suspicion 

Cowld growe in mee of hym, Confydence. 

EXPERIKNCK. 

Urn! 

Syence. 

Who, I ensure ye, wyth such vehemence 
And faythfiill behavoure in hys movynge. 
Set foorth the pyth of hys masters lovynge. 
That no lyvyng creature cowld conjecte 
But that pure love dyd that Wyt dyrect. 

Experience. 
So. 

Science. 

Now this beinge synce the space 
Of three tymes sendyng from place to place 
Betwene Wyt and hys man, I here no more 
Nether of Wyt, nor his love so sore. 

i>2 



How thjuk yon by thys, my nowue deerc mother 

Experience. 

Dowghter, in this I can thynke none ooth^-j^^H 

But that it is true thys proverbo old, ^^M 

Hastye love is eoone hot and soone cold I 

Take hede, dowghter, how you put youre trust 

To lyght lovera, to hot at the furet ; 

For had this love of Wyt bene growndyd. 

And on a Hure fowndoshyon fowndyd, 

Lytell voyde tyrae wold have bene betwene yB. 

But tliat thia Wyt woide have aent or sei 



Science. 



I thynke 



Experience. 

Ye, thynko ye so or no, 
Youre mother Experience proofe shall show 
That Wyt hath set Jiys love, 1 dare say. 
And make ye warrantyse another way. 

Wyt cuml/f before. 



But your warrantyse warrant no trothe ! 
Fayre ladye, 1 praye you be not wrotlie, 
Tyll you here more, for deere ladye Science , 
Had your lover Wyt, ye, or Confydence, 
Hyg man, bene in helth all thia tyme spent, j 
Long or this tyme Wyt had cumme or sent ; 
But the trothe is they have bene both sykke, 
Wyt and hys man, ye, and wyth paynes thycke 
Uothe atayde by the way, ho that your lovor 
Could ncytlier cum nor send by none other ; 
Wherefore blame not hym, but chance of sykjiee 



wyt and science. 37 

Science. 
Who is this ? 

Experience. 
Ingnorance, or his lykenes. 

Science. 
What, the common foole ? 

Experyence. 
Yt is much lyke him. 

Science. 

By my soothe, his toong servth him now trym ! 
What sayst thow, Ingnorance? speak agayn. 

Wyt. 

Nay, ladye, I am not Ingnorance playne, 
But I am your owne deere lover, Wytt, 
That hath long lovd you, and lovth you yet ; 
Wherefore I pray the now, my nowne swetyng. 
Let me have a kys at this our meetyng. 

Science. 

Ye, so ye shall anone, but not yet. 

Ah, syr, this foole here hath got sum wyt ! 

Fall you to kyssyng, syr, now a dayes ? 

Your mother shall charme you, go your wayes ! 

Wyt. 

What nedth all this, my love of long growne ? 
Wyll ye be so Strang to me, your owne ! 
Youre aquayntance to me was thowht esye, 
But now your woordes make my harte all quesye^ 



38 THE PLAY OF 

Youre dartes at me so strangely be shott ! 

Science. 
Heere ye what termes this foole here hath got t 

Wyt. 

Well, I perseve my foolyshnes now. 
Indeede, ladyes, no dasterdes alowe ! 
I wylbe bolde wyth my nowne darlyng ! 
Gum now, a has, my nowne proper sparlyng ! 

Science. 
What wylt thow, arrand foole ? 

Wyt. 

Nay, by the mas, 

I wyll have a bas or I hence pas ! 

Science. 
What wylt thow, arrande foole ! hence, foole, I say ! 

Wyt. 

What, nothyng but foole, and foole all this day ! 
By the mas, madam, ye can no good ! 

Science. 

Art a sweryng to ? Now by my hood, 

Youre foolyshe knaves breeche YJ. stiypes shall bere ! 

Wyt. 

Ye, Grodes bones ! foole and knave to be ! ye there 
By the mas call me foole once agayne, 
And thow shalt sure call a bio or twayne !' 

' The commencement of the last speech by Science is by mis. 
take written in the MS., hut erased. 



wyt and science. 39 

Experience. 
Cum away, dowghter, the foole is mad ! 

Wyt. 

Nay, nor yet nether hence ye shall gad I 
We wyll gre better, or ye pas hence. 
I praye the now, good swete ladye Science, 
All this strange maner now hyde and cover, 
And play the goodfelowe wyth thy lover ! 

Science. 

What goodfelowshyppe wold ye of me, 
Whome ye knowe not, nether yet I knowe ye ? 

Wyt. 

Know ye not me ? 

Science. 
No, how shoold I know ye ! 

Wyt. 

Dooth not ray pycture my parson shoow ye ? 

Science. 

Your pycture. 

Wyt. 

Ye, my picture, ladye. 

That ye spake of; who sent it but I ? 

Science. 

Yf that be youre pycture, then shall we 
Soone se how you and your pycture agree. 
Lo ! here the pycture that I named is this ! 



4?0 the play of 

Wyt. 

Ye, mary, myne owne lykenes this is ; 

You havyng this ladye, and so lothe 

To knowe me, whych this so playne showthe. 

Science. 
Why, you are nothyng lyke in myne eie ! 

Wyt. 
No ! how say ye ? 

Experience. 
As she sayth, so say I ! 

Wyt. 

By the mas, than are ye both starke blynde ! 
What dyference betwene this and this can ye fynd 

Experience. 

Marye, this is fayer, plesant, and goodlye. 
And ye are fowle, dysplesant, and uglye ! 

Wyt. 
Mary, avawnt ! thow fowle ugly whoore ! 

Science. 
So; lo ! now, I perseve ye more and more. 

Wyt. 

What perseve you me, as ye wold make me 
A naturall foole ? 

Science. 
Nay, ye mystake me ! 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 41 

I take ye for no foole naturall, 

But I take ye thus,-^hall I tell all i 

Wyt. 

Ye, marye, tell me youre mynd, I pray ye, 
Wherto I shall trust ; no more delay ye. 

Science. 

I take ye for no naturall foole, 
Browght up among the innocentes scoole. 
But for a nawgty vycious foole 
Browght up wyth Idellnes in her scoole ! 
Of all arrogant fooles thow art one ! 

Wyt. 

Ye, Goges bodye ! 

Experience. 
Gum, let us be gone ! 

Wyt. 

My swerd, is yt gone t a vengeance on them ! 
Be they gone to, and ther hedes upon them ! 
But, prowde queues, the dyvyll go wyth you both ! 
Not one poynt of curtesye in them gothe ! 
A man is well at ease by sute to payne him, 
For such a drab, that so doth dysdayne hym ; 
So mokte, so lowted, so made a sot ! 
Never was I erst synce I was begot ! 
Am I so fowle as those drabes wold make me ! 
Where is my glas that Beson dyd take me ! 
Now shall this glas of Beson soone trye me, 
As fayre as those drabes that so doth belye me ! 
Hah ! Goges sowle ! what have wo here, a dyvyll ? 
This glas I se well hath bene kept evyll ! 



THE PLAY OF 

Goges sowie ! a foole, a foule by tbe maa ! 

What, a very vengeance aylth this glas. 

Other this glas is ahamefully spotted. 

Or elfl am I to ahaniefiiUy hlotted ! 

Nay, by gogee armes, I am so no dowte ! 

How loke ther facia heere rownd abowte I 

All fayre and cleere they evrjchone, 

And I, hy the ma.^, a foole alone, 

Deckt, by Gogea bones, iyke a very asse ! 

Ingnorance cote, hoode, eares, ye by the nia: 

Kokescome and all, I lak but a bable! 

And as for this face, is ahhominable, 

As black aa tbe devyll ! God, for his passion iM 

Where have I bene rayde affter this fasayon ? 

This same ia Idlenea, a shame take her ! 

This same ia her workc, tbe devil! in hell r^te hor! 

The wboore hath ^haiiid me for ever, I trow ; 

I trow ! nay, verely I knowe. 

Now it is 80 the stark foole I playe. 

Before all people now se it I maye ; 

Evrj'e man 1 ae lawhe me to scome I 

Alas, alas, that ever I was borne ! 

Yt waa not for nowght, now well I se, 

That those too ladyes dysdayned me ! 

Alas, ladye Science, of all ootlier, 

How have I rayled on her and her moother ! 

Alas! that lady I have now lost, 

Whome all the world lovth and honorj-th most .' 

Alas ! from Reson had I not varyd, 

Ladye Scionoe or this I had uiaryd. 

And those fower gyftes which the world gave her 

1 had woon to, had I kept her favor : 

VVIiore now, in stede of that lady bryght, 

Wyth all those gallantes scene in my syght, I 



bt, ^M 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 43 

Favor, Ryclies, ye, Worshyp, and Fame, 

I have woone hatred, beggry, and open shame. 

Shame cumth in tcyth a whyppe. 



Wyt. 
Out upon the. Shame ! what doost thowe heere \ 

Beson. 

Mary, I, Reason, bad hym heere appeere. 
Upon him, Shame, wyth stryppes inow smitten, 
While I reherce his fawtes herein wrytten ; 
Fyrst, he hath broken his promyse formerly 
Made to me, Beson, my dowghter to marye ; 
Nexte, he hath broken his promyse promisyd. 
To obay Instruccion, and him dyspised ; 
Thurdlye, my dowghter Science to reprove, 
Upon Idlenes he hath set his love ; 
Forthlye, he hath folowed Idellnes scoole, 
Tyll she hath made him a verye stark foole ; 
Lastlye, ofieudyng both God and man, 
Sweryng grete othes as any man can. 
He hath abused himseHe, to the greteshame 
Of all his kynred, and los of his good name ! 
Wherfore spare him not. Shame, bete him well there! 
He hath deservyd more then he can beare ! 

Wyt hielith doume. 

Oh ! father Reson, be good unto me ! 

Alas ! thes strypes of Shame will> undo mee ! 

Beson. 
Be still a while. Shame ! Wyt, what sayst thow ? 

^ The word wold was originally written, but will was afterwards 
substitatcd for it. 



the i'lay of 

Wyt. 

Ob, sjr, forgevc me, 1 beseech you. 

Reson. 
yf I forgeve tlio thy pony slim en t, 
Wylt tbow than folow thy lyrst entfiiit. 
And promyse miwie, my dowghter to nmrye i 



Oh ! syr, I am not woortby to carye 

Tbo du8( out wliere your dowghter ahoold syt.' 



I wot well that ; but yf I admyt 

The, unwoorthy, agayne to her wooor, ' 

Wylt thow then folow thy sewto unto her ! 

Wyt. 
Ye, syr, I promyae you, while lyfe enduryth. 

Reson. 
Cum neere, masters, beere is wone enBUiyth 

Here eumth Instruccion, Studve, aniDiLlOENB i 

In woordea to becum an honest roan ! 
Take him, Tnstruccion, do what ye can. 

Instkucion. 
What, to tlie purpose he went before ! 

Resun. 
Ye, to my dowghter prove him once more ; 
Take him and trym hyni in new aparell. 
And geve that to Shame there to hitt fiuvwell. J 



wyt and science. 
Instruccion. 



Cum on your way, Wyt, be of fjood oheere! 
After etormy clowdes cumth wether clere. 



Insteucion, Study, Wyt, and Dylicbns^o out. 



Who lyst to marke now tliia chance heere doon, 
May ae what Wyt is wythout Reaon ; 
Wliat waa this Wyt better then an aese, 
Being from Resoii strayde au ho was ? 
But let paa now, synce he is well poonyshyd, 
And therby I truat nieetely well monyahyd ; 
Ye, and I lyke him never the wura, I, 
Thowgh Sliame hatli handled hym shamefiillye ; 
For lyko as yf "Wyt had prowdly bent hym 
To resyst Shame, to make Shame absent hym, 
I wold have thowght than tliat Wyt had bene, 
Aa the aayeng ia and daylye seene. 
Past shame once, and paat all amendment : 
So contraye, syns he dyd relent 
To Shame, when Shame ponysht him evyu yll, 
I have, I say, good hope in him styll ; 
I thynke as I thowght, yf joyne thci can, 
My dowghter wel bestowd on this man ; 
But all the dowte now is to thynke how 
My dowghter takth tbifl, for I may fell yow, 
I thynk she knew this Wyt evyn as weele 
As she seemd heere to know him no deele; 
For lak of knoledge in Science there is none, 
Wherfore she knew him, and therupon 
His mysbeliavor perchance evyn strykyng 
Her hart agaynst him, slie now myslykyng. 
As women oft tynies wylbe hard hartyd, 
Wylbe the stranger to be revertyd ; 



THE PLAY OF 

This muBt I lielpe ; Reson must now walke 
On Wytes part wjth my Science to talke ; 
A neere way lo }ier know I, whorebye 
My soonnos ciimmyiig prevent now must I : 
Perchance I may hryng my dowghter hythco 
Yf so, I dowght not to joyne them together. 

Exctat RbsoIC 

CONFYDENCE CUmth (tt. 

1 thaiike Ood yet at last I have fownd hym, 
I wa'4 afrayde sum my»<chance had drownd Liflbs 
My master ^V^yt, wyth whome I have spokeiij>B 
Ye, and deliverd token for token. 
And have anoother to Science aj^ayne 
A hart of gold, ayngnifyeng plapie 
That Science halh wun Wytes liart for ever, • 
Whereby I truat, by my good endever. 
To that good ladye, so sweete and so eortly, 
A marj-age betwene them ye shall see flhortlyoiTI 
CoNFYDENS exceat. 
Instruccion amtk in ja/lh Wyt, Study, and 
DyLYUE-VCR. 

Lo ! syr. now ye be entryd agayne 
Toward that passage, where dooth remayne 
Tedyousnea, your mortall enmy ; 
Now may ye choose wliether ye wyll trye 
Your bandes agayne on that tyrant stowte, 
Or els walkyng ft lytfill abowte. 




Wyt. 
Nay, for Godea pashion, ayr, let rae meete him J 
Ye ae I am able now for to greete him ! 
This sword of cumfort, aent fro my love. 
Upon her enmy needes must I proove ! 



wyt and science. 47 

Instrucciox. 

Then foorth there, and tume on your ryght hand 
Up that mownt, before ye shall see stand ; 
But beere ye, yf your enmye chance to ryee, 
Folowe my cowncell in anye wyse ; 
Let Studye and Dyligence flee ther towche, 
The stroke of Tediousnes, and then cowche 
Themselves, as I told ye ; ye wot how ! 

Wyt. 
Ye, syr, for that how marke the proofe now ? 

Instruccion. 

To mark it indeede, heere wyll I abyde 

To see what chance of them wyll betyde, 

For heere cumth the pyth, lo ! of this iomaye ; 

That mowntayne before which they must assaye 

Is cald in Laten Mons Pemcusus, 

Which mowntayne, as old auctors dyscus. 

Who attaynth ones to sleepe on that mownt, 

Ladye Science his owne he may cownt ; 

But or he cum there, ye shall see fowght 

A fyght with no les polycye wrowght 

Then strenghth, I trow if that may be praysed. 

Tediousnes. 
Oh ! ho ! ho ! 

Instruccion. 
Hark! 

Tediousnes. 
Out, ye kaytyves ! 



THK PLAY OP 

INSTBI'CION. 
The feeod is raysyd ! 

Tedioitsnes. 
Out, ye vilaynes ! be ye cum agayne i 
Have at ye, wretches ! 

Wyt. 
Fie, syrs, ye twayne ! 

Tediovsnes, 
Thei fle not far hena. 

DyLIOENS. 
Turiio agayiie, Studye. 

Studye. 
Now, Dylygence, 

iNaxauccioN. 
Well sayde ! liolde fast now ! 

Studye. 
He fleetli • 



DyLlOENCE. 



Then folowe ! 



Instruccion. 

Wyth his owne weapon now wurke him Boro^ 
Wyt lyth at reseyte .' 

Tediousnf^ (dtffth). 

Oh ! ho 1 ho ! 



wyt and science. 49 

Instrucion. 

Hark f he dyeth ! 

Where strength lackth, policye ssupplietli. 

Heere Wyt cumth in and bryngth in the hed upon his 
swoorde^ and saytk asfolowyth^ 

Wyt. 
I can ye thanke, syrs ! this was well doone ! 

Studye. 
Nay, yours is the deede ! 

Dylioence. 
To you is the thank ! 

Instbuccion. 
I can ye thank all ; this was well doone ! 

Wyt. 
How say ye. man ? is this feelde weU woonne! 

C!onfydence cumth running in. 
Ye, by my &yth, so sayth your deere hart. 

Wyt. 
Why, ^here is she that here now thow art ? 

Confidens. 

Upon yonder mowntayne on hye 
She saw ye strike that hed from the bodye, 
Wherby ye have woonne her, bodye and all ; 
In token whereof resevo heere ye shall 

e 



THE PLAY OF 



A gowne of knoledge, wlierin you most 
Beseve her here strayght. 



But sayst thow just t 

[OONFYDENCE.] 
So jnat I Bay, that except ye hye ye, 
Or ye be redye she wylbe by ye. 

Wyt. 
Holde ! present unto her this hed heere, 
And gyve me warning when she cumth nen 
Inatruccion, wyll ye helpe to devyae 
To trim this geere now in the best wyss 1 

Instruccion. 
Geve me ttiat gowne, and cum wyth me all. 1 

Dyhgence. 
Oh ! how this gere to the purpose dooth fall a 

CoNFiDENS cumth running in. 
How, master, master, where be ye now ! 

Wtt. 
Here, Confydence ; what tydynges bryngat thow 



CONFYDENS. 
My ladye at hand heere dooth abyde ye i 
Byd her wellcum ! what, do ye hide ye t 



I 



Here Wyt, Instruccion, SmnYR, and Dilicwnc 

ti/ng Wellcum rmj noiCTie,' and Syencb, ExPEribnc 

' See this song in the after portion of the volume. 



WYT AND SCIRNCE. 61 

Beson, and Confidence cum in at L^ and anaeer err^ 

second verse; and when ike song is doone^ Beson sendyth 

Instruccion, Studye, and Dyugence, and Confi- 

DENS out^ and tien^ standing in the myddett of theplace^ 

Wyt sayth asfolowyth. 

Wyt. 

Wellcum, myne owne, vryth all my hole harte, 
Whych shalbe your owne, till deth ns depart ! 
I trust, ladye, this knot eyyn syns knyt. 

Science. 

I trust the same, for syns ye have smitt 
Downe my grete enmye, Tedyousnes, 
Ye have woon me for ever dowghtles, 
Althowgh ye have woon a clogg wyth all ! 

Wyt. 
A clogg, sweete hart, what ? 

Science. 

Such as doth fidl 

To all men that joyne themselves in manage, 

In kepyng ther wyves ; a carefull cariage ! 

Wyt. 

CareAil ! nay, ladye, that care shall imploye 
No clogg, but a key of my most joye ! 
To kepe you, sweto hart, as shall be fyt, 
Shalbe no care, but most joy to Wyt ! 

Science. 

Well, yet I say, mark well what I saye. 
My presence brynghth you a clogg, no naye ! 
Not in the kepynge of me onelye, 
But in the use of Science cheeflye ; 

E 2 



52 THE PLAY OF 

For I, Science, am in this degree, 
As all or most part of woomen bee ; 
Yf ye use me well in a good sorte, 
Then shall I be youre joy and comfort. 
But yf ye use me not well, then dowt me. 
For sure ye were better then wythout me ! 

Wyt. 

Why, ladye, thinke you me such a wyt, 
As being avansyd by you, and yet 
Wold mysuse ye ? nay, yf ye dowt that, 
Heere is wone lovth thee more then sumwhat: 
Yf Wyt mysuse ye at any season, 
Correct me then, your owne father Beson. 

Beson. 

Ho ! dowghter, can ye desyre any more ! 

What neede thes dowtes ? avoyde them therfore ! 

Experience. 

Byrlakyn ! syr, but under your favor. 

This dowgt our dowghter doth well to gather ; 

For a good wamyng now at begynnynge, 

What Wyt in the end shall looke for in wynning, 

Whych shalbe this, syr ; yf Science here, 

Whych is Godes gyft, be usyd meere 

Unto Grodes honor and profyt both 

Of you and your neybowre, whych goth 

In her of kynd to do good to all : 

This seene, to Experience I shall 

Set you forth, Wyt, by her to imploye 

Doble encrece to your doble joye ; 

But yf you use her contrary wyse 

To her ^ood nature, and so dowse 



WYT AND SCIENCE. 53 

To evyll eflfectes to wrest and to wry her, 
Ye, and cast her of and set nowght by her, 
Be sure I, Experience, shall than 
Declare you so before God and man, 
That thys talent from you shalbe taken. 
And you ponysht for your gayne forsaken. 

Wyt. 

Once wame half armd, folk say namely whan 
Experience shall wame a man than 
Tyme to take heede, mother Experience, 
Towchyng youre dowghter, my deere hart Siens, 
As I am sertayne that to abuse her, 
I brede mvne owne sorow ; and well to use her 
I encrece my joy, and so to make yt, 
Godes grace is redye, yf I wyll take yt : 
Then but ye cownt me no wyt at all, 
Let never thes dowtes into your bed &11 ; 
But as yourselfe, Experience, cleryiig 
All dowtes at lenght, so tyll tyme aperyng, 
Trust ye wyth me in God, and swete hart, 
Whyle your father Beson takth wyth parte. 
To reseve Godes grace as God shall send it, 
Dowte ye not our joy, tyll ly ves end yt. 

Science. 

Well, than, for the end of all dowtes past. 
And to that end whiche ye spake of last, 
Among our weddyng matters heere rendryng, 
Thend of our ly ves wold be in remembryng ; 
Which remembrance, Wyt shall sure defend ye 
From the mysuse of Science, and send you 
The gayne my mother to mynd did call, 
Joy wythout end, that wysh I to all. 



54 wyt and science. 

Beson. 

Well eayd ! and as ye, dowghter, wyshe it 

That joy to all folke in generally 

So wyah I, Beson, the same ; but yet 

Fyrst in this lyfe wysh I here to fell 

To our most noble Kyng and Quene in especially 

To ther honorable cowncell, and then to all the rest. 

Such joy as long may rejoyse them all best ! 

AUiay Amen! 

Heere cumth in f mere wytk violes and synff, Eemembre 
me^ and at the last quere all make cursye^ and so goe forth 
Byngyng. 

Thus endyth the play of Wyt and Science^ made by 
master Jhon Bedford. 



FINIS. 



ON THE GRACE OF GOD. 55 



D. Marye, Tom, such pojntes Ghxl send him mani ! 

T. Well, go to, mok on ! your mokes bere can I, 
Tyll we shall once be evin I trust ! 

G. Nay, Tom, all Malles lay in the dust, 
And syns we have droonke all of one cup, 
Shake handes lyke freendes ! all quarelles geve up ! 

Z>. Ye, by my sowle, and syns the payne is past, 
Let us be merye, and care awey cast. 

»/. What els, Tom, syns we have leve to play! 
Let us be merye all thys long daye ! 

Fynii^ quod nuuter Jhon Bedford. 

Here the syng Hey nony nonye^ and so gofurik 

eyngyng.^ 



[A POEM ON THET grace OF GOD.] 

Comfort at hand, pluck up the hart. 
Thus sayde grace to my thowght, 

Syns the redres of all thy smarte 
So nye at hand is wrowghte; 
Pluck up thy hart ! 

Pluck up thy harte, whye dowtst thow so ! 

Se who doth lose thy bandes. 
And toward the hevyns, I lokyng tho. 

In the eie of Bsiythe ther standes 
Coomfort at hand. 

' This curious fragment occurs in the MS. without any expla- 
nation, and is cancelled with a pen. It is apparently a portion 
of another interlude. 



56 ON THE GRACE OF GOD. 

Comfort at hand I say, sayth Grace ; 

Marke, man, what tale I tell. 
And thow shalte see cawse in this case 

All care cleere to expell ; 

Pluck up thy harte I 

Pluck up thy harte, and gyve it Hym, 
That gave hynisealfe for the. 

In deite of whose diadyro, 
Looke up I say and see 
Comfort at hande. 

Comfort at hand thyne enmyse yealde, 

Yf thow forsake thy syn ; 
A new woon lyfe, a new woon feald. 

This victorye to wyn. 

Pluc up thy harte ! 

Pluck up thy harte, syns thow art sewre 
Showrs are as shorte as sharpe; 

The worlds conflyctes can not endure. 
On this sweete stryng now harpe, 
Comfort at hand. 

Comfort at hand, hark now what sowndes 

The captayne fjrenerall 
Evin wyth his blooddy bleedyng woondes 

Dooth sle thine eninyes all ! 
Pluck up thy hart ! 

Pluck up thi hart, and this shorte lyfe 

Lyvyng in lovyng &yth, 
For endles rest at endles stryfe, 

Looke where he sytthe that saythe 
Comfort at hand ! 



SONG OF EVER OR NEVER. 57 

Comfort at hand to the and roe, 

Synce Grod gyvth by his grace ; 
Let us by grace in unitye 

This cumfort to imbrace ! 

Pluck up our hartes. 

Finis. 



[SONG OF EVER OR NEVER.] 

Of ever or never folke ever conjecter, 
That never is longer by wone lytle letter; 
But ever or never, which ever be greter, 
Where never a good is theres never a better ! 

Ever in graffyng and never in growing, 
Ever in plowing and never in sowing, 
Ever in repyng and never in mowinge. 
Ever in trowing and never in knowinge.' 

Ever full gorgid, and never from tappynge, 
Ever at sylence and never from clappynge. 
Ever acold and never from wrappynge, 
Ever in hopyng and never in happyng. 

Ever in travell and never at byrth, 
Ever in smylyng and never in myrth. 
Ever in s welly ng and never slack gyrth, 
Ever in purchace and never owght wurth. 

Ever at hand and never at wyll, 
Ever styk fast and never stande styll, 

^ The MS. has corns marked after several of these verses, hut 
apparently not properly arranged. 



58 THE maiden's lamentation. 

Ever cum toward and never cum tjU, 
Ever a clarke and never can akjU. 

Syns ever and never shall never have end, 
Grood is it ever neter to offend ; 
For ever shall never kepe fawtes in safe mend. 
But ever shall scowrg £ftwtes that never amend ! 

Finish 



LTHE MAIDEN^S LAMENTATION.] 

How showld I rock the cradle, serve the table, blow 
the fyre, and spyn, a ! 

But late in place 
A pretye lasse, 

That was both &yre and jonge e, 
Wyth wepyng eie, 
Right secretlje, 

Untyll hersealfe she soonge e. 

This lytle foote, 
And ite toote, 

With notes both swete and cleere e. 
She sjght full ofte, 
And soong alofte 

In forme as ye shall here e ; 

How showle I. 

Alas ! she sayde, 
I was a mayde, 

As other maydens be e ; 
' Several leaves are here wanting in the MS. 



THE maiden's lamentation. 69 

And thowgh I boste, 
In all the coste 
Ther was no more lyke me e. 

My byrth ryght good, 
Of jentle blood 

I am undowghtydly e : 
They calde me wyse, 
I bare the pryce 

Of all then who but I e. 

How shoolde. 

I was belovde, 

Of ech man provde, 

And long I did denye e, 
Tyll at the last 
I have purchast 

This babe that here dooth lye. 

Alas ! the tyme 
Of such a cryme 

That I showle live to see e. 
Now am I thrall 
Unto them all, 

That were thrall unto me e. 

How showld I. 

Glene out of syght 
And all delyght, 

Now heere in servitude e. 
At the behest 
Of most and least 

That be, God wot, fall rude e. 



60 IN PRAISE OF VIRTUE. 

I may not swerve 
The boord to serve, 

To blow the fyre and spin e. 
My chyld to rock, 
And plese this flock. 

Where shall I first begin e. 

How showld I. 

Preserve, god God, 
All maydynhode, 

That maydenlye entend e. 
Let my de&me 
And endless shame 

Kepe them from shamefuU end e. 

Beware, good maydes. 
Of all such braydes. 

Before all other thing e ; 
Or all in vayne. 
As I complayne. 

Thus wepyng shall ye syng e. 

Fynii. 



[IN PRAISE OF VIRTUE.] 

Yf vertu sprynge, wheras youth raynythe. 

There must all goodnes neades ensue, 
And contrarye, where vice remayneth, 
Myschance doth sorow oft renue. 

Then it is best 
For youthe alwayes vice to refrayne. 
And geve God prayse, for it is playne 
Sertire Deo regnare ent. 



THE SUFFICIENCY OF GRACE. 61 

The that in youth no vertu wyll use. 

Nor to no vertue * themselves applye. 
In age all honor wyll them revise ; 
Let youth therfore then call and crye, 

And never rest ; 
Who calth for grace to Gtod above, 
In tyme and space shall fynde and prove 
8ertire Deo regnare est. 

The that delyghtyth in syn and vice, 

Not feryng God, nor kepyng his lawes. 
Let them remember, yf they be wyce. 

That God from suche his grace wythdrawes, 

And them detest ; 
But such as dooth with hart and mynd 
Love liym for sooth, he shall well fynd 
Servire Deo regnare est. 

Fynis. 



[THE SUFFICIENCY OF GRACE.] 

Ccrus. 

I desyre no number of manye thynges for store, 

But I desyre the grace of God, and I desyre no more ! 

My grace to the suffysyth, sayth God unto seynt Powle, 
Whichegrac^, as God promiseth, suffysyth body and sowle. 
What neade I number crave, to have thynges evrychone, 
Yf al of neade to have be had, havyng this one. 
I dosyre no number. 

^ Goodnes is written over this word in the MS. 



62 LAMENTATION OF BOYS 

The grace of God well usyd, as Ohryst offirythe the same, 
AUthynges arfullreftised,that mjght turae man to blame; 
Grace being such a gyfte, as grace by grace may sownd. 
My voyce with hart I lyfte, repetyng thus this ^rownd, 
I desyre no number. 

The texte that wryten is, is wryten for our healthe, 
Takyng no texte amis, all textes may healpe to healthe ; 
Faythe, hope and charytee, thes graces wyth the reete, 
Godes gyftes of grace they be, in texte this is expreat. 
I desyre no number. 

Least gyft of Qod to man, man can not full oommend ; 

Much les this most gyfte than mans prayse can compre- 
hend: 

Gt)d grawnt us all the grace, for grace by grace to kail. 

That grace may get us place in place celestiall ! 
I desyre no number. 

jffyniSy quod Jhon ffeywaode. 

[LAMENTATION OF BOYS LEARNING 

PRICK-SONG.] 

Of all the creatures, lesse or moe, 
We Ijrtle poore boyee abyde much woe. 

Lo ! who must holde the candle, but he that worst may? 
Well, syns that I am chosen this pageant for to playe. 
Have at hjrt, for out it shall evry whit by this daye. 
How we, poore sylye boyes, abyde much woe. 

Wee have a cursyd master, I tell you all for trew ; 
So cruell as he is was never Turke nor Jue f 



LRARNING PRICK-SONG. . 63 

He IB the most unhappieet man that ever ye knewe, 
For to poore syllye boyes he wurkyth much woe. 

Do wee never so well, he can never be content, 
But for our good wylles we ever more be shente, 
And oft tymes our lytle butokes he dooth all to-rent, 
That we, poore sylye boyee, abyde much woe ! 

We have so manye lasshes to leme this peelde songe, 

That I wyll not lye to you now and then among ; 

Out of our buttokes we may plucke the stumpes thus 

long! 
That we, poore sylye boyes, abyde much woe ! 

Well, I tell you trothe, this is no lawhyng game ! 
Yf ye felte as much as we doo, ye woold say the same, 
For of my e poore honesty e, we geve him to good a name. 
That to poore sylye boyes dooth wurke so much woe. 

He plokth us by the nose, he plucth us by the hawes. 
He plucth us by the eares wyth his most unh^)ye pawes. 
And all for this pevysh pryk song, not wurth to strawes. 
That we poore sylye boyes abyde much woe ! 

He sayth we syng starke nowght, when we make a ryght 

good noyse. 
For I tell you he must have his knakes, ye, he must have 

his toyse f 
Oh ! the payne that we have wyth hym, we lyttle poore 

boyes ! 
Truly, poore boyes abyde much wo ! 

He is in our det manye tymes, that is his saynge. 
But we woold forgeve hym all the dett, and never take 
daynge, 



64 LAMENTATION OF BOYS. 

But geye hyme frely ij. as muche, so that we myght make 

good payng 
To that cursed master that wurkyth so much woe ! 

But what mynd or good consyence hath this man, I pray 

you? 
Sumtymeat our ireendes desyre he saythe to us, go play yow. 
And by and by to scoole we must agayne ; is not this a 

shame, how say you, 
That we, poore syllye boyes, shuld abyde so much woe ! 

Sumtyme I shrynke and I stand behynd the doore, 
I tell yow to see hym yt grevyth me ryght sore ; 
Ye, by thes ten bones, I woold I myght never se hym more, 
For to poore syllye boyes he wurkyt much woe. 

We must ever be in hys syght, when yt grevyth us sore 

to thinke on him ; 
Ood wottes full often tymes, when we have loe bat a 

wynke on him, 
We wysh hym ftiU hartellye in Newgate with a lynke on 

him, 
That to pore syllye boyes he workyth much woe ! 

Evry day thus we complayne, but for all that he mendth 

not; 
Nor for owght that we can se, to mend he entendth not ; 
He that woold hang hym evyn up, in my consyence 

offendeth not. 
For than we pore syllye boyes showld be ryd of much woe ! 

Yet for to hang hym I wene it be not best, 
For yf he were gone, we shold have another gest 
As yll as he, for nowght they be all the hole nest, 
And to pooro syllye boyes the worke much wooe. 



Therfore, tliowglie lie be starke nowglit, yet we must kepe 

hym still ; 
But to show our chaiytee and to do good for yll, 
We shall pray to Cryst to amend hym, when it is his wyll. 
That to poore eylly boyes he wurke no more woe. 



[A MORAL VERSION OF THE HUNT IS UP.] 

The hunt ys up. 
The hunt is up, 

Loe .' it is allmoat daye. 
For Chryst our kyng 
Is cum a huntyug. 

And browght his deare to etaye. 

When God tooke in hand 
To make see and land. 

And curapast it rownd, i 
With bewtyfull skyes. 
Where he dyd devyse 

The soooe and moone showld be. 

To fiimyah iiia warke. 
And expulce the darke. 

The soone ahoolde rule by day ; 
The moone sober lygbte. 
To enjoye the nyght. 

And kepe there coorse allway. 



Then afFter his mynde. 
The (S^she were assynde 

To flowe in seaa and fioodc. 



66 THE HUNT IS UP. 

The byrdes in the ayre, 
And beastes showld apeere, 

On yearthe to seake ther foode. 

And last be dyd frame, 
To set foorth hys name, 

A ereature most cleere. 
Unto his owne lyknes. 
With reson and quycknes. 

And chose them for his deare. 

The most plesant grownde 
That ever was fownde, 

Inclosyd with swerd defence ; 
For, loe ! his wyll was 
His deare showld not pas 

The pale of abstynence. 

But that Mee deseaver, 
That lovyd them never, 

Game wyth his charmyng tayle ; 
And by his falce wylle 
Dyd them sore begyle, 

And cawsyd them lepe the payle. 

Thus were they lost clene, 
For they by no meane 

Gowld not retume agayn ; 
So that many yeares, 
Among thomes and breres, 

The sowght ther foode with payne. 

Wherefore they myssed 
Both drynke ther and breade, 
• Became ther enmyse praye. 



But sent liia owne soone, 
Wlio strongly begoon 

To Imnt both bill and playne ; 
No one kjnd of payn© 
But he dyd eustajne, 

To wyn his dearc agayn. 

He chose other twelve. 
And tawght them himaelve 

To blow so jnet a note, 
That every deare. 
That lyat now to heare, 

May biya that happye note ! 

To fynyah hys warke, 
He incloeyd a parke, 

Both pleaant, large, and wyde ; 
Id palyng it sewer 
With i^oinmandmcntes puer, 

Wherin his deare showld byde. 

Thus were they restoryd ; 
But, Lord ! how he roryde. 

That fyrst dyd wurke ther faule 
With sondrye entycya ; 
Wherfore he devyeia 

Agayne to make them thrall. 



Now yow that be kepcrs. 
Take heede be no sleepers. 

But watch bothe day and o 



68 NOLO MORTEM PECCATORIS. 

For there is no dowte, 
The thefe goth abowte, 

And sekyth whome to dovowre. 

Wherefore ye had neade 
To take ryght good heede, 

Among all other thynges ; 
That is, ye be sure 
Ther feedyng be pure, 

And drynke of holsome sprynges. 

For yf the do not, 
They wyll have the rot; 

What wyll the Lord then save ? 
When he shall vewe 
Of his deare and yowe, 

At that most dredefixU daye. 

Wherby this is cleere, 
Yf so be his deare 

Wythin the parke persever ; 
Then shall the rejoyse 
To heere his swete voyce. 

And be his deere for ever ! 

The hunt is up &;c. 
Fynii quod master Jhon Theme. 



[NOLO MORTEM PECCATORIS.] 

Nolo mortem peccatoris : hwc sunt verba Salvatcris, 

Father, I am thine onlye soone, 
Sent downo from hevyn mankynd to save ! 



Father, all thynges fiillfjld and doone 
Apcordyng to thy wyll I have: 
Father, cow all i«y w-j'll in thia, 
Koto mortem peceatoris. 

Father, behold my paynes most b 

Takyn for man on evry sjde, 
Evj-n from my byrtli to deth most tart ; 
No kynd of payne I have deiiyed, 
But suffred all for love of thie, 
Nolo mortem pecoaiori't. 

Behold my byrth, in what degree 

Into thys wrechid worlde I 
Takyng mans vyle nature on 

Wythe all the myrieries of the same. 
Save onelye ayn ; and all for this, 
Nolo mortem peccator 

Beholde my teudre iniancy 

Scante viij. dayes old, but that 1 was 
Cut in my fleashe moat paynfullye. 
To slicdd my bloodo for mans treupas 
I not disdanid, for love of this, 
Nolo mortem peccatorii. 

Heere dwell I tbyrtye yeares and three, 

In hoonger, thyrst, in cold and heate. 

In greate contempt of the world at i\ 

For my goode deedes and travelles greate 
Takyn for man, and all for this. 
Nolo mortem peccatorii. 



When thyrtye yearee and three were run, 
Tyme drawyng ncare of my most woe ; 



NOLO MOKTEM PECCATORIS. 

Oh I Father, now beliold thy soone. 
My paynes increcyng moe and moe • 
For which, O ! Father, liarken to thia. 
Nolo mortem peccatorit. 

Behold my eyghea, my soruwfut hart, 

lieholde my teares, my hlooddyp sweatt ! 
Behold my paju«s in erry parte 
Had on tlie mowut of Olivet, 
Betbre my death, decUtryog tliis, 
Nolo mortem peeeatorit. 

Beholde the Juea moBt fearae and wood«, 

Thyaoone they sowght wyth glayves and bylles ! 
Behold thy Soonc most meake of moode^ 
tlevyn to there handeo to do there wylles. 
To whomo 1 bowed my wyll (or this, 
Nolo mortem pecfatorit. 

Then to a ^>09t fast viAn 1 teyde, 

Scorgyd and be ten on evry syde, 
Tyll uo Bcin loft, but as one fleyde, 

Ther stode thy soniie in Mode all dyde, 
Moet Hiekely suffryng all for thya. 
Nolo mortem peeeatoria. 

Beholde, also, then how the browght 

Thy innocent lambe before ther judges, 
Aa one that had all mygchefe wrowght, 
C'ondemd to deth upon ther gnidgee 
Orowen agaynst me for prdchyng thia. 
Nolo mortem peeeatorU. 

Behold my hed then how they crowned 
Wythe themes, ye, percyng nere the br&yne ! 




NOLO MORTEM PECCATORIS. 

My face, laj nei-ke, in blood all drowned. 
My fleslie all tremblyiig in evry vayne. 
For paaayng pay no ; and all for this, 
Ifolo nwrtem peecatoris. 

To bore my croHse then forth they drave me, 
Tyll the grete wayte threw me tlier under, 
But then hard strokes inowe they gave me, 
Betyng me forth wyth shame and wunder .' 
All whych I mekely auffred for tliis, 
Holo mortem peccatoru. 

My garmentee then to me fast clevyng. 

Most violently fro me they drew ; 
The flesLe evyn from th» bone then ryvyng. 
My bloddy woondes they dyd renew 

With no small payne ! oh, Father! yet this, 
Nolo mortmn pHCcataris. 

But then behold those cruell folke. 

One at ech arme, wone at ech fote, 
Thorow fleah and bone grete nayles they stroke, 
The stremes of blod were set aflote ; 

To washe tber eyn that wrowght all this, 
Aolo mortem peccatoru. 

Then up aloft, my croase they cast, 
The fall wherof downo in the rest 
My joyntea and sinowea all to-brast! 

Whych payne of payues was not the lest, 
That I ther mekely auffryd for thia, 
Nolo mortem peccatorU. 

Upon that pros behold how 1 there 
Hong thrc long howres or lyfe wer gor, 



3 



NOLO MORTEM PECCATORIS. 

Havynj; no stay n»y body to bere, 

But those hard naylea tliorow fleshe aud bone ; 
Yet I pvyn tlier declarjd this, 
Noh mortem peceatoris. 

When all my blode was lliorowly spent. 

My flesh dried up tur lack of lycker. 
Then wytli a spero my liart they rent, 
To trye my dethe for man most sycker ; 
The whkh I mekely suffred for this. 
Nolo mortem peccatorit. 

Who may expres those paynes to rae deli ! 

Who may bethynk them to dysclose. 
Id myne humanity sensyblye felt ; 

Yet is ther one payne more then those. 
Oh ! Father, why showld I say this S 
Nolo mortem peccatorU. 

This my most payne, this my most care, 

Is for to see mans unkyndncs ; 
For all my deth he wyll not spare 
Me to offend, my lawes transgres. 
And all in hope and trust of this, — 
Nolo mortem pecfatorit. 



The world, the flesh, ye, and the di'vyll, 

Man wyll not spare to serve all three, 

Takj-ng occasion of all this evyll 

Of myne owne wurdes ; sayng to me. 
Whatever we do, yet Cryst saytb thi^ 
Nolo mortem peccatoru. 

But unto man I say agayne, 
Deth of a sinner wyll not I, 




FRAGMENT OF AN INTERLUDE. 73 

Yf he amend and sin refrayne ; 
But when in syn styll he wyll lye, 
Then unto him I speak not this, 
Noh mortem peccataris. 

O man, for thy love have I dyede ! 

I ax no more of the therfore. 
But love for love in thy dedes tryed ; 
Forsake thy syn and kepe my lore, 
And then to the I say evyn this. 
Nolo mortem peccatoris. 

Now here an end of this our song ; 

Now to that Lord that dyed for man 
Geve thankes, and pray for grace among, 
To kepe his lawes, that we may then 
Enjoy his mercyfiill woordes in thys. 
Nolo mortem peccatoris. 

Finis quod Mr. Bedford. 



[FRAGMENT OF AN INTERLUDE.] 

Corage/ 

Shall we three joyne in unitee 
To cheere these gestes I 

Kyndnes. 
By my trothe, ye. 

Clbnnes cumth in^ and Con. stelytA away. 
Not so, my freendes, here me speake. Mum ! 

* This fragment is cancelled in the manuBcript. 



FAIR WORDS MAKE POOLS FAIH. 

COBAGE. 
Where is Concupiscence becum ! 

Clenneb. 
My preaene hath put her to Sjght I 
Where Gleuces doth in place apeere, 
Ther is Concupiscence gone quighte. 



[FAIR WORDS MAKE FOOLS FAIN.] 

In youthfiill yeares, when first my yonge desires heganne 
To pricke me tbrth to serv^ in court, a sclender, tall yonge 

manne : 
My fathers blessinge then I asked uppon my knee. 
Who, blessinge me wyth treuiblinge hand, these woordes 

gan say to me : 
My Sonne, God guide thy waye, and sbielde thee from 

niischauDce, 
And make thy just desartes in court, thy pare estate to 

advaunce : 
But when thou art become one of that conrtlie tniyn©, 
Thinke on this proverbe olde, quod he, that fairo woordes 

make tools faine. 

This oounsellgraveliegBven, moat atraungeappeares to rae. 
Till tract of time with open eyea had made me plainelie 



fitli frendlie ahowea the simple 



What subtill sleites are wrought by painted talkea do- 
vise, 

When liollowe hartes 
dooe entise 

To thinke all golde that shines, to fede their fonde desier. 

Whose sliiveringe coulde is warmdc with amoke, in stedo 
of tlaminge tier ; 



PAIR WORDS MAKE FOOLS FAIN. 75 

Sith talke of tickle trust dootli brcede a hopu most vaine, 
Tliis proverbe true by profe I finde, that (aire woordea 
make fooles faine. 

Faire speache alwaye dootli well, whearos deedes iasue 

faire woordes ; 
Faire speach againe alwaye dootb evill, that bushes geves 

for birdes j 
Who hopes to have feire woordes to trie his lackie lott, j 
If I niaye counsell, let him rtrike it while the yron is 

whot ! 
But them that feede on cloddes, instede of pi easaunt grapes, 
Aud after warninge geveu,*for better lucke still gapes, 
Full loth I am, yet I must tell them in woordes plaine. 
This proverbe olde proves true in age, that fiiire woordea 

makes fooles Mue ! 



Wo worth the time that woordea so slowelye prove to 

deedes .' 
Wo worth the time that faire swete flowers ar tumde to 

rotten wedes ! 
But thrise woo worth the time, that tmth awaye is fled, 
Wherein I see howe simple hartes with woordes are v^no- 

lie fed .' 
Trust not faire woordes, therefore, where no dedes dooe 

ensue ; 
Trust woordes aa skilMl falkeuora dooe trust haukes that 

never flewe ; 
Trust dedes; let wordes be woordes, which never wrought 

me gaine ; 
Let my experience make you wise, and let woordes make 

fooles faine ! 

Ftuis. 



76 SLEEP COMPARED WITH DEATH. 



[SLEEP COMPARED WITH DEATH.] 

Lett not the sluggish sleape 

Glose up thy wakinge eye, 
Untill with jud<]^meiit deepe 

Thy daylie deedes thou trie. 

He which one sinne in conscience kepes. 

When hee to quiet goes. 
More venterous is then he that sleepes 

With twentie mortall fooes. 



Wherefore at night, call unto minde 
How thou the daye hast spent ; 

Praise God, if nought amisse thou finde ; 
If ought, in time repent. 

And sith thy bed a pateme is 

Of death and iatall hearse, 
Bedward it shall not bee amisse 

Thus to record in verse ! 

My bedd is like the grave so coulde, 
And sleape which shuts mine eye 

Resemble death : clothes which me folde. 
Declare the moulde so drie. 

The friskinge fleas resemble well 
The wringlinge worme to me, 

Which with me in the grave shall dwell^ 
Wheare I no light shall see. 

The nightlie bell which I dooe heare, 
As I in bed dooe lye, 



INVOCATION TO GOOD ACTIONS. 77 ^| 


Tlie passinge bell may seme t*apere, ^^M 


Which soundea wlien I must dye. ^H 


The risinge in the mome likewise, H 


When slepie night is past, ^H 


Puttea me in minde howe I shall rise ^^^^^H 


To judgment at the last. |^^^^| 


1 gooe to bed aa to my grare, ^H 


God knowes when I shall wake ! ^M 


But, Lord ! I trust thou wilt me save, ^M 


And me to mercie take I ^H 


Finii. H 


[INVOCATION TO GOOD ACTIONS.] ^ 


Man, for thyne yll lyfe formerly. 


And tor thine ill lyfe presently, 


Let penitence penitently 


Declare good liffe consequently. 


As loving iaythe may frutfully 


Bringe hoope of end mercifully 


By Christ, whose wuundes moat bledlngly 


Wyne metcye most excedingly. 


For whose sweate love incessantly. 


Take no hard liappe displesantly ; 


Lokc what thou sufferist rightfiilly, 


That sufferance take paciently. 


And what thou sufferest wrongfiilly. 


■ That sufferance take rejoycyngly ; 


B Take ryght or wrong contentidlye ; 


^^k Man, bero the cros consentedlye ! 



SONO AGAINST IDLENESS. 

And yf thy foea delyghtfiilly 
Show yll for good most apightftillye. 
Show good for yll most wyllynglye. 
To showo Qodes woord fiilfyllynglye ; 
Thy foe fautyng offendynglye, 
Wyn ae thow noayBt amend jTiglye, 
But in no wyse iutendynglye 
Requite thy foe revenginglye. 

Bere all thyne enmyes quietlye, 
Forgeve thyne enmyes hartelye, 
And axe forgeveneas humbly e. 
Where thow oSeadst offensyvelye ; 
Premeditate advyeedly, 
What troobles may fall folowynglye, 
Lest troblfi towch the terreblye 
By towchjTig the to sodeoly. 

Fancy not grevea more dredfiillye 
Then atandth wyth reson nedefiillye ; 
Yf meiie greveB towch hut tenderlye, 
Those groves ean greve but stenderlye ; 
Yf mayn^ greves grype tlje gredelyo, 
Those greves remove them spedylye : 
Let comfort vanquyah cherefiillye, 
Faynt fancyea fallyng ferefullye. 

Syns welth and wo abydynglye, 
Remayne not here but slydynglye, 
The wealth and wo enauenglye 
Remaynyiig aye renewynglye ; 
Man, pray for grace continuallye 
To pas from all paynea (ynallye, 
Both erthly and infernally. 
To hevenly joyes etemallye. 

Ftnir qitod J/ioh /lei/vootf. 



What hart can tbynk or tooiig expres 
The liarme that groweth of idlenes ! 




This idlenca in sum of us 

Is Bene to seme a thyng but sleyght, 

But yf that sum the sums discus, 

The totall sum doth show us streygbt 
This idlenea to way such wayght, 

That it no tounge can well expres 

The harme that growght of idlenes, 

Tliis vice i lykeu to a weede 

Tliat liusbond-men have named tyue, 

Tlie whych in come doth roote or brede"; 
The gniyne to grownd yt doth inclyne, 
Yt never rypyth but rottyth in fyne ; 

And evyn a lyke thyng is to gease 

Agaynst all vertu, idellnes. 

The prowd man may be pacyent. 

The ireful! may bo lyherall, 
The glotonus may be continent, 

The covetous may geve almes all, 

The lecher may to prayer fall ; 
Ech vyce bydyth sum good busynes, 
Save only idle idlenes. 

As sum one vertu may by grace 

Supresse of vycea many one, 
So ys one vyce once taken place 

Distroyeth all vertnes evrychone ; 

Whore this vyce cumth, all vertues ar gone. 



LONa HAVE I BEEN A SINGING MAN. 

For noe kynd of good busynea 
Can oumpany with idlenca. 

An yll wynd that blowth no man good, 
Tiie blower of whycb blast ia she ; 

The lyther lustes breJ of her broode 
Can no way brede good propertye ; 
Wherforo I say, as we now ae, 

No hart can thynke or toong expres 

The hanne that growgth of idlenes .' 

To dense tlio come, as men at nede 

Wede out all wedcF, and tyne for chefe, 

Let dilygence our wedohooke weede 
All vice from us for lyko releefe ; 
Ab fayth may faythfully show preefe, 

By fiiythfull frutefiill busynea, 

To wede out ftiitles idlenes. 

Finh quod Jhon Ifeinrood. 



b 



[LONG HAVE I BEEN A SINGING MAN.] 

Long have I bene a singyng man, 
And sondry partes oft have I aoong. 

But one part, eina I fyrst began, 

1 cowld nor can syng, old nor yong ; 

The meane I mene, whych part ahowth well 

Above all partes most to excell, 

Tke base and treble are extrcms : 

The tenor atandyth aturdely ; 
The cownter rangyth then, me aema ; 

The mene must make our melodye ; 



Marke well the maner of the mene. 
And therby tyme and tune our aonge 

Unto the meane, where all partes lene. 
All partes ar kept from syngyng wrong; 

Thowghe syngyng men take this not well, 

Yet doth the mene in thys excell. 



The mene in cunipas is so lai'ge, 
That evry parte must joyne therto ; 

Yt hath an ore in evry barge, 

To syng, to say, to thynke, to doo ; 

Of all thefl partes thia part ahowth well 

Above all partes most to oscell. 




To low, to bye, to lowde, to softe, 
To few, to many at a part ; 

To awyft, to slowe, to sealde, to oft. 
Where imperfection woold pervart, 

There doth the mene aprove ryght well 

Above ail partes most to excell. 

The mene is so commodious. 

That sang we but that part alone, 

Tlie mene is more melodious 

Then all those partes, lackyng that o 

VVherby the mene comparyth well 

Among all partes most to exceli. 

The mene in losse, the mene in gayne. 

In welth or in adversytye ; 
The mene in helth, the mene in payne. 

The mene menyth sUwayes e<]iiitye; 



tilVE PLACE TO HONEST RECREATION. 

This IB the mene who menyth well, 
Of all our partee moat to cxcell. 

To me and inyne, with all the rest, 

And God grant grace with harty voyc« 

To syng the mene that menyth best, 
All partes in the best to rejoyce; 

Whyeh mene in nienyng menyth well. 

The mene of menes that doth excell. 

Jhon Red/ord. 



[GIVE PLACE TO HONEST KECREATION.] 

T/ie/yrgt gon^ in the play 0/ Science. 

Gyve place, gyve place to Honest Recreaoion ; 
Gyve place, we say, now for thy oousolacion. 

Wlien travelles grete in matters thyeke 
Have duld your wyttea and made them sycke. 
What medson than vour wyttes to quycke, 
Yf ye wyll know the best phisycke, 

Is to geve place to Honest Reereacion ; 

Gyve place, we say, now for thy conaolacion. 

Where is that Wjt that we seeke than ! 
Alafi ! he lyeth here palo and wan ! 
Heipe hym at once now, yf we can : 
Wyt, how doest thow I looke up, man ! 

Wyt, gevB place to Honest Recreacion ! 

Gyve place, we say, now for thy consolacion. 

After place gj'vyn, let eare obay, 

Gyve an eare, W yt ! now w« tht pr»y 



THE SOXO OF EXCEEDING MEASURE. 



8.T 



Gyve eare to that we syng and say; 

Gyve an eare, and healp wyll cum strayghteway ; 
Gyve an eare to Uoneet Becreacign, 
Gyve an ere, now, for thy consolacion. 

After eare gyvyn, now gyve an eye; 

Behold thy freendea abowte the lye, 

Recreacion I, and Comfort I, 

Quicknea am I, and Strength herebye ; 
Gyve an eye to Honest Recreacion, 
Gyre an eye, now, for thy conBolacion. 

After eye gyvyn, an hand gyve ye ; 

Gyve an hand, Wyt, feele that ye see, 

R«creacion feele, feeic Comfort fre, 

Feele Quicknes here, feale Strength to the ; 
Gyve an hand to Honest Recreacion, 
Gyve an hand, now, for thy consolacion. 

Upon his feete woold God he were ! 

To rayae hym now we neede not fere ; 

Stay you hya handea, whyle we here here ; 

Now all at once upryght him rere ! 

Wyt, gyve place to Honest Recreation, 
Gyve place, we say, now for thy consolacion. 

Ftnit, 



[THE SONG OF EXCEEDING MEASURE.] 
Tie ij. tong. 



Exceedyng mesure wyth paynes continewall, 
LangneNh^-ng in absenit, alas ! what shall I doe f 



84 WELCOME MINE OWN. 

Infortunate wretch, devoyde of joyes all, 
Syghes upon syghes redoublyng my woe. 
And teares downe fallyng fro myne eyes toe ; 
Bewty wyth truth so doth me constrayne. 
Ever to serve where 1 may not attayne ! 

Truth byndyth me ever to be true, 

How so that fortune iaverth my chance ; 

Duryng my lyfe, none other but you 

Of my tru hart shall have the governance ! 
O, good swete hart, have you remembrance 

Now of your owne, whych for no smart 

Exyle shall yow fro my tru hart ! 

Finis. 



[SONG OF WELCOME MINE OWN.] 

TTie thyrd Song. 

Wellcum myne owne, 
Wellcum myne owne. 

Wyt and his Cumpanys. 

O ladye deere. 
Be ye so neere 

To be knowne ! 
My hart yow cheere 
Your voyce to here ; 

Wellcum myne owne ! 

Science and Air Cumpanye. 

As ye rejoyse 
To here ray voyce 

Fro me thus blowne ; 



WELCOME MINE OWN. 85 

So in my choyco 
I show my voyce 

To be your owne. 

Wyt and his companys. 

Then drawe we neere 
To see and heere 

My love long growne. 
Where is my deere ! 
Here I apeere 

To see myne owne. 

Science and hir cumpanye. 

To se and try 
Your love truly 

Till deth be flowne, 
Lo ! here am I, 
That ye may spie 

I am your owne. 

Wtt and his cumpanye. 

Then let us meete 
My love so sweete 

Halfe way heere throwne. 

SiENS and hit cumpanye. 

I wyll not sleete 
My love to greete ; 

Wellcum myne owne ! 

Wyt and his cumpanye. 
Wellcum myne owne ! 

All $ing. 
Wellcum mvne owne ! 

Finis. 



[WILL ANU POWER.] 

Where Power witli Wyll can not agre, 

There Wyll can not be salyafied ; 
Where thes too want equalytye, 

No unj-tye can be aplyed ; 

Which in mysealf I have eapied. 
In that that Power cannot fhlfill 
The faythfiill inenyiig of my Wyll. 

My Wyll ia to do that I owght, 

But Powre therto cannot attayne ; 
Thus Wyll to pas cannot be browght, 

As Wyll to have yt woold be layne ; 

Yet wyllyng Wyll shall styll remayn 
Thowgh Powre be able in no wyse 
My wyllyng Wyll for to saffyse. 

Thus Wyll I have, but Powre I want, 

Whych showM to Wyll be healp at nede ; 

Syns Power so far is discordaiite 

From Wyll, alas ! Wyll can not apeedi), 
Thowghe Wyll deserve both thanke and meede; 

That want of Powre then may I wayle, 

Wherby good Wyll can not prevayle. 

yiui* quod Join Hedford. 



[SONG OF A GREEN WILLOW.] 




Ail a greue wyllow, wyllow, w. w. 
All a grcne wyllow is my garland. 



Alaa .' by what meue may I make ye to know, 
The unkyndnea for kyndnea that to me Joth growe! 
That wone who most kynd love on me ehoold bestow, 
Most ankynd ankyndnes to me she doth show. 
For all a grone wyllow is my garland I 

To have love and hold love, wher love is B 
Oh ! delycate tbode to the lover so fed ! 
From love wood to love lost wher lovers be led, 
Oh ! desperate dolor, the lover is deade ! 

For all a grene wyllow is his garland ! 

She sayde she dyd love me and woold love me still. 
She sware above all men I had her good wytl ; 
She sayde and she sware she woold my will fal611 : 
The promyse all good, the performans all yll, 
For all a grene wyllow is my garland ! 

Now, wo wurth the Wyllow, and wo wurth the wyght. 
That wyndj-th ivyllow, wyllow garland to dyght ! 
That dole delt in allniys is all amys quyght ! 
Wher lovers ar begers for allmys in syght, 

No lover doth beg tor this wj-llow garland ! 



Of this wyllow garland the burden semth siiial. 
But my brocko neck burden I may yt well call ; 
Lyke the sow of Imle on my bed it doth fell ! 
Breke hed and breke neckc, back, bones, brayn, hart, and all ! 
A U partes prest in peces ! 

To yll for her thynk I best thinges may be had, 
To good for me thyiikthe she thynges beyng most bad, 
All I do present her that may make her glad, 
All she dothe present me that may make me sad ; 

This uquyt4 have I with this wyllowe garland ! 



88 THE LAMENTATION OF DIDO. 

Cowld I forget thee, as thow canst forget me. 
That were my sownde fawlte, which can not nor shalbe ! 
Thowghe thow, lyke the soryng hawlke, evry way fle, 
I wylbe the tmile most stedfast still to the, 

And paciently were this grene wylow garland ! 

All ye that have had love and have my lyke wrong. 
My lyke truthe and paciens plante still yow among ; 
When femynyne &ncis for new love do long. 
Old love can not howld them, new love is so strong. 
For all. 

FtnU^ quod Jhon Heyteood. 



[THE LAMENTATION OF DIDO.] 

Behowlde of pensyfiies the pycture here in place, 
Beholde myne eyes whose teres do moyst my paled jGsbce; 
Beholde myne eres denyde of there desyrid solas, 
Beholde my playntes of yll, my momyng hevy case ! 

I Dido, quene of Carthage cooste, 

For Eneas love my lyfe have lost ! 

My fame, my love, mysealfe, I gave into his hand ! 
My kingdome and my welth at his ovme heast did stand ! 
Yet promis nor desartes cowld binde his harte in trothe band, 
But fled, alas ! fro me by nyght out of my land ! 

Forgettyng all respectes of trothe, 

He falste his honor and his othe ! 

As the whyte swan dothe singe towardes her dieng day, 
And as the turtle tru her mone doth make alway. 



So I, pore Dido, do my iiiysfries here bewraye, 
And with my death my dolet'ull desteny display ! 
O, lawles love, no hcarbe is fowiid 
To salve tlie sore wlier thow dost woond ! 

O worthy women all, of hye and lowe d 

A merror Dido make Eneas lovo to fl 

Trust not mens wordcs a 

Which moat tymes deceiptfiiU be, 

And are, alas ! the baytea that breedea our inisserie ! 

Suffieeth for my love I die, 

That you may live and loarnc thereby. 

rockio ruthlessc liartow, 
Vour owno with spite to spill ! 
curased crewell men. 
How can you worke such ill i 

doltiiU deepe dixpaier, 

Riuge out my carefiill ends knill ! 
Welcome to me, swete death '. 
To me my grave, yt is my wyll ! 

1 came of earth and wylbe thyne. 

By trayno of liym whom I thought myue ! 

Finis Thomas Pndioxe. 



[ARISE, ARISE, I SAY!; 



Aryae, Aryse, Aryse, I say; 

A ryae for shamei, yt ys fiiyre day ! 



After mytiiiyght, when dremes do fall, 
Sum what before the mornyng graye, 



L 



ARISK, AB19E, I SAY. 

Me thowght a voyoe thus djd me kail, 
lusty yowth, aryso I say 1 

youth, he sayH, lyft up tlii hed ! 

Awakti ! awake ! yt ys foyre day .' 
How canst tliow slepe or kepe thy bed 

This feyre raornyng ! aiyae, I say. 

The Sonne is up with hys bryght beames, 
As tUoughe ho woolde with the now fraye. 

And bete the up out of thy dreamea 
To r.iyse the up : aryse I say. 

Hark how the byrdes all with wone voyce 
Of one Concorde theire cordes the kay, 

Wythe joyfull tewnes the to rejoyse 
And chere the up ! Arise, I say. 

Beholde the fealde now ia lyke foorme, 

Furnisht with flowrea both swet« and gay ; 

It aaythe to tliee, tliow slotiifuU woomie. 
Cum walke in me ! arise, I say. 

The day, the soone, the byrd, the fealde, 
Syns all thes call, thow lampe of clay ! 

Unlen shainoles now be thy sheelde, 
For very shame aryse, I say. 

With tbia me thowghte the voice reherste 
Hya wonles and sayde, youthe, I the praye 

Wliat nieanth thya day and all tlie rest 
That saythe to the, arise, I say. 

Truly tliys day now to dysclose 
Is C'ritJtL^ fayth, that long liyd lay. 



Altl8£, ARISE, I SAY. 

And now full tayre and olere it shouae 
To rayae the up. Aiyse I eay. 

What is this snn that shyoith so brighte ! 

The veri sun of God, no nay ! 
Whoose beames of Grace be bent even ryghte 

To beate the up ! Aryee, I say. 

\Vhat are thes byi-des that 80 accurde, 
That eche swete eorde eche ere woolde tay ! 

Truly, tru prechers of the Lord, 
At whoa swete cordea aryae I any. 

What is this fealde furnisht so &yre 
With fluweres ao Bwet in ther araye 

The word of God most awete of ayre 
To waike therin. Aiyae, I say. 

And ue thow walk among thea flowrea. 
Not for to paijtiuie, jest, aad play, 

But reverently pressyag tliy powres 
From wanton prjde. Aryae, I say. 

For ularkea thcr liath bene many a woiie, 
That in this feald ihemsylves dyd alay, 

Trusting to muche themselves upon ; 
Beware ther fiilt ! Aryse, I aay. 

The surest way to walke is thys, 
Meakcly on Cristys church to atay ; 

The lower thow walkeat in hart sure ia, 
The hyer thow alialt aryse, I aaye. 

Now syns thow knowst both wher to walke, 
And how to walke thow knovset the ways : 



THE PLEASURE OF GODUSESS. 

Let age lye still as drye lis chalke, 
And lustye youtlie, arise, I eaye. 

To this me thought douhting the trathe. 
And lest this voice shoulde me betrayei, 

I saide, O voyce, why more to youtlie 
Than unto age, arise, I saye. 

That thynge, aaide he, I shall declare. 
This youthe and age now to bewraye, 

The Jwea and GentillB suer they are ! 
Now gese to whome arise I saye. 

The Jwe he is so olde and wome, 

That speke to him in vaigne ye maye. 

Bat thow youthe art newlye borne ; 
Whcrfore to the arise I saye. 

Sins Christ thy lorde hath chose thy atock 
And lest his owne flocke go aetraye ; 

Now shew thyselfe a lovinge flocke, 
And unto Christ arise I aaye. 

Thia aaide, I harde no more to tell. 
Hut waked, and eeing faire clere daye, 

Saide to myselfe, these words might well 
Be saide to me — Arise, I saye ! 

Finii. 



[THE PLEASURE OF GODLINESS.jj 



Now will you bo merye, 
And can yon be merye! 



THE PLEASURE OF (iODUNEftS. !)3 

We praye you be merye, 

Merye, merye, metye ! 
We praye you be merye, 

Merye, merye, merye, 
Merye, merye, merye, merye ! 

From Cliristmas to Ester 
Be as merye »a you can. 
So you maye please botbe God and man. 

From Ester to Whytsontide 
Let ua all now joye and singe. 
Be merye all in Christ risinge ! 

Ohe iiatho this songe bene put in tire. 
That honest myrtlie doth vertew allure ; 
But now of mirthe who will be suer, 
He must begine at vertuze pure; 
For vertu bringithe chefe mirthe to man : 
In Tertuouae mirthe be merye than. 

This vortuouee mirthe now to begine. 
To men of feithe we spoake here in — 
Is to feare God and fle frome sinue, 
^Vhich feare of God dothe wisdome wine ; 
Which wisdome bringethe all knowlage to man. 
In Tertwe how to be merje than ! 

Where wisdome joyneth and ruilethe the harte, 
Man knowithe himaelfe in everye parte ; 
God and hia lawes with all thy harte 
Obayed of man syn to auhvarte. 
The daungerouB dawnger unto man ; 
How can man but he merve than ? 



THE PI.EASL'BK OF fiOPUNESS. 

Whan God's worde hathe put syne to flyght. 
In eommetho Cleaue Consyeuce Bhyninge bright. 
In whome man tyudetlie ao greate delyglit, 
That she can naythar daye nor night 
Be absent trome the harte of man ; 
How can man but be merye than ! 

Whan Cleane Consyence in harte ia sett, 
Faithe rysethe up, and withowte let 
Saithe unto man, This howae is net 
Met to reoey ve a goat ryght greate ; 
What yf tby Lorde whoulde prise the man. 
How can niau but be merye than ? 

Faithe, saithe man, what haste thow tolde i 
Yf that my liowse were made of golde. 
And I muehe bettar a thowsande folde. 
Yet so to think were overbolde 
My lorde to vysett me, wretched man ; 
But oh ! how mexy showld I be than. 

Why man, saithe Faithe, dost thow dowte me! 
No, no, saithe man, I dowte not the. 
What dowghtest thow, than ! saith futhe, tell t 
Myne owns unworthynes, saithe he. 
Deapayre not, man, saithe Faithe to man. 
No, no, saithe man, Faithe gone were than. 



As man and Fa>-the be thus talkinge, 

In Dommethe Suar Hope to man runnynge: ' A< I 

man, sayethe be, thy lorde and lunge 

Senthe me to the to gyve warmngf ; 

This daye will he dyne with the, man ; 

Prepare now to be merye than. 



THE PLEASl KE OF (lODLINEfiS. 

Make spede, sayetbe roan, &yre conayence clei 
With fajtLe and hope, thow measingere, 
And ladye love, cum all you nere ; 
Let all dylygenoe in you appere 
In welcumynge my lordo to man, 
TLat we in Lym be merye than ! 

Cleane Conecyenoe saithe, as I ever must 
To trayne this liowse is all nij lust ; 
Love saitlie, my dedes shall shew, I trust, 
How my Lordea presence I do tliurete ; 
Hope aaithe, tlion trust well, dowte not, man ! 
man saytlie, Faythe, be merye than l 

Man havinge now greate goatlye care 
For his deare Lorde well to prepare, 
His power to weake his wyll to declare ; 
Sodanlye a-none, or man beware, 
Oure Lorde imbraaethe the harte of man ! 
O man, how arte thow merye than ? 

Where man waa late in carefiiU plighte 

His Lurde to see reeeyved ryght, 

Now hathe he lost bothe tounge and myght ! 

Welcnni, my Lorde, he cryethe in sprite; 

For joye no word can pase fro man. 

In harte man is so merye than. 

Now roaye mm thinke himselfe now blest 
To se hia Lorde become his geat. 
To lodge and kepe howse in hya brest ; 
Noe townge can tell that joyfull feat. 
That IB betwene now flod and man ! 
Man ya with God so mery than ! 



THE PLEASVRE OF OODLINESS. 

Now mail, with Mary, takth good hede 
What from hys lorde dothe there precede ; 
Hys liolly woordes doo man so fede. 
That man in wysedome is now indede, 
Ye, more lyke angell then lyke man ; 
Gret cawse hath man to he mery than ! 

Man showth furth marthaae dylygens 

To chere hys gest in evry sena ; 

Hys gest dothe know by hys pretena 

How glad he ia of Iiys presenH, 

For whych hym lykth to dwell with man ; 

How can man but be mery than i 

With gostly wyeodome man thus fedde, 
Of goatly strength now ia ehe apedd, 
Hys gostly fooea under to treadd ! 
All goatly myrthe in hym is apred ; 
No carefiiU care can now hurt man ! 
What man can not be mery thnn ? 

Man sayth our Lord synce in good quarto, 
Thow art by me now as thow art. 
So show thyeelfe in outward part, 
Therby thy brother to convart ; 
Won man to wyn another man, 
That man wythc man be mery than. 




Man, with Zacheua, then, saytli he, 

Lo I Lord, even halfe my goodes fro mo 

I geve to the pore for love of the ; 

Man saythe, our Lord, glad mayst thow be I 

Thys day ia heltb to thys howee of man ! 

O man, how art thow merye than l 



THE GOODNESS IIF AI.I. ROD S GIFTC. 

Man heryng tliia, man is not ecilcnt, 
But witli dew thankes and hart reverent, 
WitL Peter and Jliou he doUi frequent 
Unto the temple, with prayer fervent ; 
Man talklhe with God, and God with man. 
Id whom man is full meiye than. 

Man now desj-rtli none other gajne. 
But aa hye LordeH dyecyples twayue. 
Going to Emawce dyd conatrayne 
Ther Lord to tarj' with them ho fayne ; 
So tary with me, Loi-d, Bayth man, 
That we allway may be mory than ! 

Man, sayth our Lotde, 1 am with the 
Unto the worldes end, I so decre ! 
Walke in my wayes and thow shall be 
Never voyde of myrtli, but dwell with me 
In endles myrtli, prepard for man, 
For ever to be merye than ! 

grarioua God, what wordes be theesc, 
To stere all folke of all degreea 
To myrth in God, wherby man sees 
That endles niyrthe shalbe hya fees ! 
Which myrtli GoJ grawnt us evrj- man, 
That we may all be merye than ! 

Finh, quod Jhon Bedford. 



[THE GOODNESS OF ALL GOD'S GIFTS.] 

Jr-HL'S. 

Walkyng alone ryght Bficretly, 
Musyng on thynges late sene with eye, 



THE OOOnNK33 OF Al-t. Gon S RI 

All sortea of peple yoiig and olde 
Sort.yd in sorte.s, as ahalbe tolde ; 
Sum liye, eum low, sum ryeho, sum poors; 
.Sum Icnid, sum unlonid, sum le«se, sum i 
Sum hole, sum sycke, aum iu such rnte 
As notiiyng pleede witli there estate. 

Sodaynly metliowghte I hard a sownd, 
That from the hevona dyd relwwndo ! 

A 9ong yt somd seutens to tramo 

To evi-y BOrt that I cowld name, 

Which eownd or songo dyd both rpprevo. 

And generally allso releve, 

But ayugulerly the senteua ran, 

As ye shall here thus yt befran. 

Yf gyftea of grace in all tyme pa-et, 
Yf gyftas of grace in tyme present, 

Yf gyftes of grace to cum at last, 
Yf al be gyftes ryght exceleiit, 
Yf all wlr.'-h gyftes be gevon and mcnt 

To make the myiid thy Lord so kynde, O ir 

Mynd well my gyftes, and thanke me than ! 

Yf I made the to myne owne lyknes, 

Yf reson, wyll, and memorye, 
Yf aowle and bodye, lyfe and quiknes, 

Yf thes to the be gyftes most hye ; 

Yf all my creatures els worldlye 
TJnlyke to the be made for the, man. 
Why thankst not me, thy Maker, than I 



Yf thow were lost by Adams syn, 
Yf ryghtwysenea condemd thn quyte. 



Vf Adams syn danid all h;a kyn, 
Yf dethe were dew to the ofrj'glite; 
Yf I, of my mere inen-ye pyghte, 
Bow^lite tlie from detli by royne owne deth, O man. 
Why thankes not thy Redsmer than ! 




Yf thow hast dayly gyftea of mn, 
Yf I geve thee gyftes Daturali, 

Yf I geve worldJye gyftea to the, 
Yf I geve gyftea epyrytuall, 
Yf thow deaervest no gyfte at all. 

But geven of me frelye to the, O man. 

Why thankat not me, the gy ver, than ! 



Yf dy vera wayes my gyftea I plant, 
Yf I geve the gyftes above other, 

Yf I geve the that other want, 

Yf I geve the gyftes for tliy brother, 
Vf all be gyvyn won for an other, 

To helps wyth mede where thow seyst nede, O n 

Aa I geve the, geve other than I 

Yf I geve the gyftes grete and manye, 

Yf I to hy degree the kail, 
Yf I geve the cure over anye, 

Yf I geve the cure over all ; 

Yf thow for all make answer shull 
That I set the to kepe for mee, man, 
Remember where I set the than ! 

Yf I set the in low estate, 

Yf I geve the lest cause to boste, 

Yf I geve the gyftes in ech rate, 

Yf my lest gyfte may make the moate ; 
Yf paciens he a gyft« thaw knowste 

H 2 



I THE SlNFUl-SFM OF MAN. 

Of all to wyn tlie pryce tlierin, man. 
In paciencu be tliow tfaankfull tlinn ! 

yf I send the sycknes ur liealtlie, 
Yf I Beud the pleaare or payiie, 

Yf I send the scarciieB ur welthe, 
Yf I knowe best what is thy gayne, 
Yf for the beat I send all playne, 

Aa thow shallt see by profe to thee, O man. 

Take well all that I send the thau ! 

Synce these my gyftea thow dost achpve, 
Synce of my gyftas thow canst none niysse. 

Synce wyth my gyftea I the releve, 

Synce by my gj"ft«8 my love showde is ; 
Synco for my gyftes I axe bnt thya. 

Thy love for myne to lyve in fyne, man, 

Now love and lyve for ever than ! 

Ft/Ilia quod Jhon Reil/iird^. 



[THE SINFULNESS OF MAN.] 

Wher Ryghtwysnes doth eny, 

Lorde, for my synffull partes, 
Tn wrath tliow sfaowldest me paye 

Vengeance for my deseartes ! 
I can it not denye. 

But nedcs I must confer 
How that contytmaliye 

Thy lawes I doo transgres ! 



Bnt yf yt be thy wyll 
With Rynners to Dont«nde, 



THE SINFULNESS OF MAN. 101 

Theu all thy flok shall spjll, 

And be lost wythout ende ; 
For whoo ly vthe here so ryghte. 

Thai he can ryghtly eaye, 
He synthe not in thy syghte 

Full oft and evry day i 

Thy Scrypture playne telth me, 

The ryghtwyse man offendes 
Seven tymes a day to the, 

Wheron thy wrath depends ; 
So that the ryghtwyese man 

Doth walke in no such pathe, 
But he faith now or than 

In danger of thy wrath ! 

Then synce the cace so standes, 

That even the man ryghtwyse 
Faith oft in synfuU bandes, 

Wherby thy wrath may ryse ; 
Lorde, I that am unjust, 

And ryghtwysenes none have, 
Wherto shall I then trust 

My synfuU sowle to save. 

But only to the poste, 

Wherto I cleve and shall, 
Whyche is thy mercye moste ? 

Lord let thy mercye fall, 
And mytygate thy nioode, 

Or els we peryshe all ! 
The pryce of thys thy bloode, 

Wherin mercye I enlle ! 

Thy Bcrypture <loth declare 
No droppe of blood in tlie. 



IN I'RMSTi OF LEAIINIXH AND VlHTfK 

But that thow dydst not spare 
To tihedd ech droppe for me ! 

Now let thos droppe moat weete. 
To dense my hart most drye, 

That I wyth eyii replete, 
My lyve and syn may dye ! 

That being mortylj'ed, 

Thys Byn of myne in ma, 
1 may be sanctyij'ed 

By grace of thyne in the ! 
So that 1 never fall 

Into such dedlye syn. 
That my foes infernall 

Bejoyse my dethe tlierin ! 

But voutaafe me to kepe 

From thoa infernall foes, 
And from that lake so depe, 

^Vheraa no meirye growes, 
And I shall syng the soages 

Coiifynned with the juste, 
That unto the belonges, 

AVhyche art myne onlye troste ! 

F^nys quod Master li«i/oriif. 



[IN PRAISE OF LEARNING AND VIRTUE 



In worldlye wclthe for maua releafe 
Vertu and lemyng are ihe rheafe ! 



Well ys the man that dothe beetowe 
Hye tyme in vertu here to spende. 



J 




For sure ther is no mau duLlie knowe, 

Excepte the same he do alteiide. 
What qiiietnca thfir duth ensue 
To those that lerne and trade vertue. 

For sure these too the sal'ogarde are, 
Wherby we paw tlie sturdje streuies, 

And the grete Btormes of worldly c 
For never eytees, landes nor remes, 

That can atayne prosperyt^, 

L'ulea thoa too regarded be. 

To vertu yet have thya respecte. 
Whoa prayse la allway pentianeute. 

For leminge ia of amall effccte 
Wher vertu is not reaydeiit ; 

But wber they both are knit in place, 

Oh that man ys in happye case ! 

Sum oidye lerne for knowledge Hake, 

But that is kewrioayte ; 
And aum for prayse grete paynes do take, 

But that ia foolyshe vanity ; 
Sum lerne for gayne, but lyghtly tho. 
Do leve the texte, and use to gloap ! 

Now all thea aames, and nil thya sorte, 
Have lust ther labor and ther warke. 

For Bum ahotte wydc and aum shotte eborte, 
Yet all iu tyne do niys the marke ! 

Wlierfore lei vertue futst be plaste, 

Or els ia leruyng quigbte dysgraste ! 

Thus may ye evydeutlye set- 
How lerninge joyiide with vertuous lyfe 



BE MEHIiy, n!IE»D0. 

Sliowld of I'ch man regardyii bee. 
For Ji_vl liatli tliys prorogatyve, 
Tliat God liyniselte dothe tliose inihrace 
Tliat trede the patliea of vertuse trace * 

Syijce God and man doiLe lovp that mau 
That Btudyeth to lyve vertuoualye^J 

Wlio wyll not styfflye labor than 
To folowe vertue instaatlyo, 

Wlien he therby wliall sure obtayDe 

The joyes that pvei' Rhall remaynei 

Fi/iiis, quod J lion Thome. 



[BE MKItRV, FRIENDS'] ' 

Be nierye, frondes, take ye no thowglite. 
For worldlyc cares viae ye ryght nowghte ; 
For who 8o Jofhe, when all ya sowghle. 
Shall see that thoivghte avaylethe nowgbte 

Be rnory, frendes '. 



All suclic as have all wealths at wyll, 
Ther wjlW at wyll for to fulHyll, 
From greafe or grudge or anye yll. 
1 nede not ayng thys tliein untyll, 
Be merye, frendea '. 



But unto suche aa wyelie and waute 
Of worldly? welthe wroghtc them so scante. 
That welthe by wurke tliey can not plante. 
To them I nyng at thj-» insliinle, 
Be nierv. frendes ! 



\ 



'liinte, ^^M 



BE MKRHY, KRIi:Sn». 

And Buclie as when the rest seino nexte, 
Then be they strajte extretnelye vexle ; 
And suche as be in ptorin<?3 j^erplexte. 
To those I syng thya shorte swete texte, 
Be mery, frendes .' 

To lawghe and wyn och niau ajp-eea, 
But ectie man can not lawhe and lese, 
Yet lawhyn^' in the laate of these 
Hathe bene alowdo of sage deerece; 
Be inerye, frendes ! 

Be nieiye with sorowe, wyae men saydo, 
Wliyche saynge bojnge wyeelye wayde, 
Yt seainyth a lesson lyvelye layde. 
In thys sayde sens to bee a an eyde ; 
Be merye, frendes ! 

Make ye not too sorowes of none, 
For of wone grecfe graffedd alone 
To graB'e a sorowe tlier upon, 
A aowrer crabbe we can grafte none ; 
Be inerye, fi-endes ! 



Takynge our sorowcs sorowfuUye, 
Sorowe auguieutythc our maladye; 
Takynge our soruwea nierylye, 
Myrthe salvythe sorowes m()8te sowudlye . 
Bf luerye, frendes ! 

Of greves to cum standynge in fraye, 
Provyde defence the best we uiaye ; 
Whyche done, no more to doo or saye, 
C'nm what cum shall cum, rare awaye ! 
He nicrye, frendep ! 



1 MY CONSTANCY IN LOVK, 

In Buche tliynges as wee can not flee, 
But iieades tliey must abydden btie. 
Let contentashyn bs decree 
Make vertue of neasesBytee ; 
Jk' nierye, freiides ! 

To likkke or loae ihat we woolde wyn, 
Su that our iknte be not therein ; ' 

Whftt wo or wante end or begynne, 
Take never sorowe but for syne ! < 

Be uierye, frtudea ! 

lu los of treendes, in lakke of tiealtbe, i 

In los of goodeH, in lokke of welthe, 
Wlier lybertee restraynte expelthe, 
Wlier all tlies lak, yet as thys telthe, ' 

Be niery, frendes ! 

Man hardly hath a rjchor tliyng 
Then honest inyrth, the whyche well-sprynj; 
Watryth thee rootes of rejoysyng, 
Feedyng the flowers of flooryshynge ; 
Be niery, freendes '. 

Bee inet<ry in fcrod, aaynt Powle sayth playoe. 
And yet, saytli be, be mery agayne ; 
Synce whose advyce is not in vayne, 
The feet therof to entertayne. 
Be inety, treeudea .' 



L 



F^nit, quod Master Hayaood. 



[MY CONSTANCY IN LOVE.] 



Yf love for lore of long tymc hui 
May joync \vith 'y>y. iind viiiv I 



O HEAR ME, LORD. 107 

Then may remenibrans make me glad, 

Dayes weekes and yeares in all tyme past,^ 
My love hath lovyd me bo loovyngly, 
And I wyll love her as trewlye ! 

And as we twayne have lovd and doo, 

So be we fyxyd to love evyn styll ; 
The lawe of love hath made us too 

To wurk to wylles in wone wyll : 
My love wyll love me so loovyngly, 
And I wyll love her as trewlye. 

Ye lovers all in present place, 

That long for love contynuall, 
I wysh to you lyke plesant case. 

As ye perse ve by me doth fell, 
And yours to love as lovyngly ! 

FyniSy quod Master Hayu;ood. 

[O HEAR ME, LORD, AND GRANT MERCY.] 

O Lord, whych art in hevyn on hye, 
And seest the synnes of synners all. 

For grace, Lord, to tlie I crye, 
Withowt the whych perysh I shall ! 

O here me, Lord, and grawnt mercye ! 

My syns, O Lord, I can not hyde 
From thy prescns ; therfore I crave 

Thy grace in erth to be my guide, 
That thow my synfiiU sowle mayst save ! 

here me. Lord, and grant mercye ! 

1 The above four lines are repeated in the MS. by a clerical 
error in the preceding song. 



o nivAH Mt; Loitn. 

No rygbtwjaenes iu mee doth ra^iie. 
Hut Bynne I knowe and wyckediies ; 

Uiiles tliy grace I doo obtajue. 
Dew unto mee is deth endlea ! 

O, liere me, Lonl, and grant mercye ! 

Fi-om thi justiue. Lord, I apele, 
No sinner in thy syght can stand, 

Hut thy mercy my eowle may hele, 

The wliych I crave, Lord, at thy hand ! 

Oh here 

SuSer not me, thy creature, 

Lord ! to peryshe in thy syghte ! 

Thowe cittist make cleiie that is nnpure ! 
dense me, Lord, a wofiill wyght l 

here me, Lord, and grant mercje ! 

Alaa ! good Lord, yf I coutciide 
By thy justyce my wurkes to trye, 

Then am I damned wythont end 
Fro thy presence eternallye f 

O heere me, Lord, and grant mereye ! 

Lord, what woold it profyt the. 

That tliow ma^le nie to thyne owne lykne^ J 
Yf I shoold now condemned be 

To hell, for mjne owne wyckednes i 
O here me. Lord, and grante mereye ! 



O Lord, sytli grace so needtull ys 

To mee, poore wretch, with ayn infect, 

Let thy mereye eseeede justyce, 
Tliat I may be thyne owne elect t 

O hci-e iiif, Lonl, iiiid (jnvnt mereye! 



ON LAWFUL LIBERTY. 109 

But yet, Lord, in thee I trust. 

That as thow hast created mee, 
I confessyng my synne unjust, 

Thow wylt not cast mo of from the ! 
O here me, Lord, and grant mercye ! 

Finis quod Myles Huggarde, 



[ON LAWFUL LIBERTY.] 

Men most desyre, as most men most tymes see. 
To banyshe bondage and at lybertce to bee. 

Men take lybertee to man, as thyng most plesant, 
Whych tale to bee true wee agree to grante, 
In case that wee our lybert^ do use, 
Enbracyng vertu and vyce cleerly refuse. 

But yf wee wyll abuse our lybertee, 

Then lybertee ia mean to bryng captyvytee. 

So that lybertee yll usyd or understonde, 

Is onlye the thyng that makthe freemen bonde, 

As hath bene scene in folke of all degrees, 

And dayly is scene, whych syghte ech wyse man sees ! 

Thys danger done, who wyll leme to eschewe, 
Mark well thys lesson that after doth ensue. 

Synce our lybert^'use makthe good and yll, 
And that lybertee wee wyll desyre sty 11, 
Wysh we to use lybert^ in eche thynge 
As standeth with the lawes of God and our kynge. 

Fynis, 



THIS WORLD IS BIT A VANITV, 



[THIS WORLD IS BUT A VANITlj 

Who shall profoundlye way ami ocan 
Tlje unassured state of man, 
Shall well perseve by resou than 
That where is no stabylytee, 
All la subject to vauitee ! 

Now mortall man, behold and se» 
This world is but a vanit:5 ! 

If thow be kyiiff or emperowr", 
Prj'Uce ether lord of myghtt' and powTe, 
Thy poore aubjectes doo not devowre : 
Beware of prj'de and cruelty 
Lose not thy fame for vanity I 

Yf thow be set to do justice, 
Regard vertu and pooiiysh Tyce ; 
! pres no man, I the advyce ; 
Abuse not thyne auctorj-tee 
To vexe poore men for vanity ! 



Yf thow have landes and poodos grete ston, 
Consyder then thy charge la more, 
Synce thow must make aeownt therfore ; 

They are not thyne, but lent to the. 

And yet they are bot vanitee ! 

If thow be stronjie or fiiyre of face, 
Syknes or aire dotli both dysgrace ; 
Then be ""• ""owd in ony case. 

For Wt more fo!y b« 

Tli -de of vanittW 




IN PRAISB OP A GOOD WELCOME. Ill 

But yf thow fortune to be poore, 
So that thow go fro dore to dore, 
Humbly geve thankes to God therfore. 

And thynke in thine adversity, 

Tliis world &c. 

But yf thow have mens sowles in cure, 

Thy charge is grete I the ensure ; 

In woord and deed tliow must be pure : 

All vertu must abownd in the, 

Thow must exchew all vauyte ! 

Then since ye do perseve right clere. 
That all is vayne as doth apeere, 
Leme to bestow, while thow art heere, 

Your wyt, your powre, your landes, your fees ; 

Leme to bestow thes vanitees ! 

Now, fynallye, be not infect 
Wyth worly cares, but have respecte 
How God rewardth hys tru elocte 
With most perfyt felycytee, 
Fre from all worldly vanity ! 
Now, moi'tall man, behold and see 
Thys world is but a vanytee ! 

Fynis^ quod Mr. Tharne. 



[IN PRAISE OF A GOOD WELCOME.] 

Ye be wellcum, ye be wellcum, 
Ye be wellcum won by wone ; 



! IN PRAISE OP i GOOD WBLCOMF. 

Ve be bsrtely wellcuni. 

Ye he bartelv welkoin every choi 

When freendes lyke &eendca do frendlj-e slxnre 
Unto ech other bye or low. 
What cheere encret^e of love doth grove. 
What better cbeere than they to knowe f 

Thys » welcam '. 
To bread or drynke, to flesh or fydie. 
Yet wellcum is tbe bt«t drsh ! 

In all oar fare, in all oar chwre 
Of deintye met«s, eowght far or nere, 
Most fyne most costive to apeero, 
What for all thys, yf all thys ge«re 

Lak thyg welciim ! 
Thys cheere, lo i ya not wurth won rysb^^.l 
For welcum is the best dynhe .' 

Where welcum is, thowgh fare be smalle, 
Yet honest hartea be plese withal! ; 
Where wellcum wanthe, thowgbe grete fiuw | 
No boQcst hart content it ahall 

Wythout wellcum ; 
For honest hartea do ever wyshe 
To have wellcnm to the beet dyshe. 



Sum with email fare be not plesde. 
Sum with much fare be much dysaesde ; 
Sum with mene fere be scant apesed. 
But of all sums none is dysplesed 

To be wellcum ! 
Then all good chore to a'^omplyshe, 
Wellciini must be the beat dyshe. 



IN PRAISE OF A GOOD WELCOME. 113 

Yet sum to thys wyll say that they 
Without wellcum with mete lyve maye. 
And wyth welcnim without meate, naye ! 
Wherfore mete seemth best dysh, thay saye, 

And not wellcum ! 
But thys vayne sayng to banishe, 
We wyll proove wellcum here best dyshe. 

Thowgh in sum case, for mannes releafe, 
Meate without wellcum may be cheafe ; 
Yet wher men cum, as here in preefe. 
Much more for love then hoongeres greafe. 

Here is wellcum. 
Thorow;?he all the chore to fumvshe. 
Here is wellcum the best dyshe. 

What is thys wellcum now to tell ? 
Ye are wellcum, ye are cum well, 
As hart can wysh youre cummyng fell. 
Your cummyng gladth my hart ech dell ! 

Thys is welcum ! 
Wherfore all dowtes to relynquishe, 
Youre wellcum is your best dyshe. 

Now as we have in woordes heere spent 
Declard the fecte of wellcum ment, 
So pray we you to take thentent 
Of tliys poore dyshe that wee present 

To youre wellcum, 
As hartely as hart can wysh ; 
Your wellcum ys here youre best dyshe ! 

Finis quod Jhon Haywood, 



AOAINST Sr,ANnF,R AXn SI.\NDF.RH 



[AGAINST SLANDER AND SLANDEfl 

Gar call hyni dovvne, 
Gar kail hym downe. 

Gar kail hym downe, dowiie, ey. 

God send the fa</i;tou 
Of all detraL'ciou, 

Kail du^vne and caat awaje '. 

Allmyghty Gfld 
Doth shake hvB rod 

Of Justys on all those, 
Tliat nniustlye 
Detrartivelye 

Detract ther frendes or foes. 

He telth ech wone, 
Thow shall judge nope, 

And yf thow judge iinhydden, 
Thyselfe, sayth he, 
Shall judged be ! 

Thys lesson is not liyddpii. 

To thys now eturd, 
Thya is concurde. 

Which wylth us in ech dowght« 
To denie the beet, 
That may be gest, 

Tyll tyme the trothe trye out. 

Knowyng by thya. 
That thynke aniys 

Agaynst no man we uiay ; 



AGAINST SLANDER AND SLANDERERS. 1 1 5 

Much more must we 
111 language ilee, 

And call hyt downe, downe, ey ! 
Grar call hym downe ! 

With sword or skajne 
To see babes slayne 

Abhorth to looke upon ! 
Attend to raee, 
And ye shall see 

Murder and sklander one ! 

Lyke as a knyfe 
Berevyth lyfe. 

So sklander fame hath slayne ; 
And both once doone, 
Both alyke soone 

May be undoone agayne. 

Then what more yll, 
Wyth knyfe to kyll. 

Then wyth the toonge to styng ? 
Wyth knyfe or toonge, 
Stryke old or yong. 

All in effect one thyug ! 

Thes woordes ar short, 
But they importe 

Sentence at length to way ; 
Of all whych sens, 
To fle thWence, 

To call them downe, downe, ey ! 
Gar call hym ! 

When vyce is sowghte. 
All vyce is nowghte. 

But sum yyce wurs then sum ; 

I2 



A<:AIK4T SLANDl^R AND SLAND£ltEU8. 

And echo man eeea 
Soon dry degrees. 

In ech vyee selfe doth cum. 

Now synce the least 
We showld detest 

Vyce or degrfi in vyce; 
Yf in the most 
We show our boat. 

That showth us most uuwyue ! 

If I in the 

Such fawtes onco set). 

As no man els doth kiiowe, 
To the alone, 

And other none. 

Those fawtes I owght to sh.-we. 

Then of intent 
Yf I invent 

Falce tales, and thi-ni dyB|ilaye ; 
That is most vyle, 
Whych t« excyle 

God kalthe yt downe, dowue, eye. 

Sum cowut no charge 
To talk at large 

Such yil as they doo Iieru ; 
But Godes accoWDt 
Doth not amownt 

To take sucli talkers cleere. 



Of work ill wrowghte 
When we hora owghte. 
In tetiyug fuorth the same. 



AGAINST SLANDER AND SLANDERERS. 117 

Thowgh it be true, 
The taike may brue 
Diynke of damnable blame ! 

To frame excuse 
For toonges mysuse. 

We have no manor meaue ; 
So that by this 
No way ther is 

YU tales to cary cleane : 

Whych makth me call 
Upon you all, 

As calyng call you may, 
Tales felce or trew, 
Meete to eschowe. 

To kail them downe, downe, ay. 
Gar call hym. 

Sklander to feare, 
Or to forbeare, 

Thys texte standth well in place. 
Wo be the toong, 
Whereby is sproong 

Sklander in any case. 

Cryst cryth owt styll, 
Say good for yll ; 

But we say harme for harme ; 
Ye, yll for good 
Yll toonges do brood, 

Wrath is in them so warnie ? 

To sleko thys fyre 
Of sklandrus yro 

Repentance must devyse 



AtlAlNST MALICK AND REVENGE, 

To set all liaudes 
To quench the braiidca 
^V'ytll water of our eies ! 

Wliych brandea theu blowe 
To make tliitn) ^jlowe. 

As grace by grace may stay ; 
And by rosort 
Of good report, 

Call ttkluiidur dowue, I say '. 

FynU, ijuod J/wh UeyKood. 



fc 



[AGAINST MALICE AND REVENGE 

Mao, yf thow niynd heven to obtayne, 
Bere no males to no wyghte hnoiayne ! 

Whoever thow hate la good ur yll ; 

Yf lie be good, hate showth the nowght ; 

Yf he bo yll, and yll shalbe Btyll, 
Wherby at end he hath 8U wrowght^ 
That to damnacion he bee browght. 

Then charyt^ showth much more roaon 

To pitye liys payne, thou inalyugne liys parsou '. 
Man, yf thow. 

If he be nowght to whom thow art fooe, 
And shall here aHer so amend, 

That he be t^avid, and thow allao. 

Then ahai! he love the tynio without end f 
Then why showldes thow thys tynie preteU 

In mallys towardes him to persever, 

That shall hereafi'ter love thp for ever. 
Man, vf ihow. 




7 this thow mayst iu resoii see 

To hate the good is wretchednes ; 
To hate the yll lakkyth charity ; 

To good or yll theu hero no malles. 

But love the good for ther <;oodiios. 
And for the ill coiitiiiuaUye, 
Pray for aDiendiiient lovjngly ! 
Man, yf thow. 

Sum wyll perehanB objecte to thya, 

That good folke wyth good cousciena may 

Wyah haniie to hym that liarmfiill is, 
Wherby the harmles may allway 
Unharnied be in quiet stay ; 

But of this roote the brauchos are 

Far over long now to declare. 
Man, yf thow. 

But for breafe end, by rayne aasent, 

All such as be of meno degree 
Desyue or devise of ponishnient, 

Let us remyt to those that be 

Joyned therto by auctorytee, 
Wlios wysdooms do by grace attend 
To ponysh the yll, and the good defend. 
Man, yf thow. 

And wher we suppose ani man in bart 

To bee any wurse then wee woold he were. 
Let us, I aay, set mallea apart, 
And looTj-nly fall we to prayer 
For hys amendment in tbys maner ; 
As by our owne fawte we see in deede 
(Jur owne amendment of prayer hath ueade ! 
Man, yf thow. 
F'jiiii. '/iwd J/ion hfti/wooiff. 



AITIIFUL HEABT. 



[KEEP SURE A FAITHFUL HEART.] 

Yt liatli beene oft both aayde and soonge. 

Take lieede wliat wordes do pas the toongo ; 

But DOW say we to olde aud yonj^e. 

Take heede what thowghtea in harte ar sprooiige. 

For of all partes cownt every parte, 

No parte compartli to a faythfuU harte ! 

The tooiig is but an instrument 

Onlye to show the hartes entent ; 

Except the hart doo fyrst consent. i 

What good or yll ran tooiig inveut J 

Syu«e in the toouge lytb not tliat parte. 

Be eure to keepe a &ythfall hart. 

For as the harte la good or yll. 

So by the toong apeere yt wyll ; 

Yf tlie liart bo good, tong good wyll styli ; 

Yf'the hart bo yll, toong sure wyll kyll ; 

Thus j-f tlie hart rule toong ech partiB, 

Be sure to keepe a faythfull harte. 

Yet sumtynie toonges full foyre can glyde. 
When harteis full faico from toouges be wyJe 
But what soever hartes do hyde, 
By toongos at length it wylbe spyed : 
Then ie not toong the surest part. 
Wherefore keepe sure a faythfull hart. 



How oft see wee now in our dayos, 

Toonges thowght most sure prove unsure stB^M ; 

By wyne, or yre, or other wayes. 

The rloeeBt hart the tonn;: bewrayes f 



KEEP SURE A FAITHFUL HEART. 121 

Synce Jaylye playde we see thys parte, 
He sure to keepe a faythfiiU hart. 

Then synce our toonges be nothyng sure. 
Except our hartes all pure endure, 
And that our hartes beeing all pure, 
Our toonges can put none yll in ure ; 
Then bo wee sure the surest parte 
Ys to keepe sure a faythfiiU hart. 

Whych faythfull hartes God grawnt to spryng 

In us and all the harts lyvyng ; 

But specialy now let us syng 

Fyrst unto God and next our kynge, 

As we be bowno in thes owr partes, — 

God grawnt us all good faythfull hartes ! 

Fynia quod Master Knyght. 




Page 1, line 9, Trycke.] Neat, elegant. 

Puge 2, line 13, Ajte.] One at the many genuine ^Vnglo-Samu 
low considered vulgnrisiua. 

The kynge these thre demandes aretk. 

To the knight this Iswe he taseth. 

That he shall gone and conte agcine 

The thirde wckc, and tell him pleinc 

To every point, what it aiaounteth, 

Aud if BO be that he miscountetb. 

To make in his aiwwere a faile. 

There shall none other thyng availe. 

The kynge oaitli, but be shall be deade. 

And Icsc hi» goodes and bis head. 

Goaer't Caa/rstio Atnanlit, fol. 1554, f. 2i 

For he bath waged me wel, 

As Wisdom hym tnugble, 

And I forgyvc bym that gilt 

^Vith a good wille, 

So that the kyng aasente, 

1 kan seje no bettre; 

For Mede hath mc aniendcs niaad, 

I may na raoorc axe. 

Piers Ploughman, ed. Wriglit, p. 71 
pBge-2, lini; 14, Lccse.] To !o9C. (A.8.) ^ 

And as Daniel divined, ^^M 

In dcde it fel aAer; ^^M 

The kyng lees [hat] his lordahipe, "^B 

And lower men it hadde. 

Piert Ploughnon, cd, Wright, ji. I4S 



I 

54, r. 2i 

I 



NOTES. 



Elt^antlj. The term o 



12S 
n tht Tenj- 



IVe 3, line 22, Fwtely.] 
piM and tbe Wiuter'a Tiile. 

P«ge 7, line 3, Huftur,] A deceiver. 

For when he goetb to it, he is no ka/ier ; 
Ue driukcth dronke for two daycs ancr. 

Doclour Donbbh Ale, n. il. 
Page 7, line 20, The budje of me.] A common (.'xclamaiion, enprea- 
eive iirastoniBhmeDt. 

Page g, liuc 20, Pecbya.] Cunning tricks. 

Here fetches ; 
The images of revolt and fiying off. 
Fetch me a better onsiver. 

King Lear, act ii., «e. 4. 
Page 8, line 33, Pash.] To break by striking. "Pll paab bim over 
tbe face." — 'Vroiim and Cressida. 

Page 9, line 20, Doth thy stomak serve the to fygbt now.] That is, 
have you any inclination to fight The phrase is not unusual. "Fall 
to them, as you find your stomach serves you." — Tamitiff of the Shrew. 
Page 13, line 15, Abasse.] A kiss. 

Page 15, line 19, Tbe galjord.] A quick and lively dance, introduced 
into thb country about tbe year 1541. It is alluded to in Tweiab Night. 
Ptige 17, line 9, Calat.] A scold, or drab. "Callut of boundless 
tongue." — H'iater'i Tale. 

O good condycyon to faer bousbonde, 

Yf be call her calat, she ealleth hym knave agayne. 

She sbyll not dye in bis dette. 

Cocke Lorelles Bote, Sig. B. i. 
Page 18, line 2, Twydlyng.] Porley has, " Tunddle, to be busy and 
bestow seeming pains about the merest tritles. £x. — What are yon 
twiddling about there ?" — Vocabulary of East Anglia, p. 360. This ia 
undoubtedly the same word used by Kedford. 
Page 18, line 12, Perseve.] Peseve, MS. 
Page 19, line 25, Itowte.] Snore. 
Page 30, line 4, In such takynge.] Fright, o 
taking was he in, when your husband asked who w 
Merry Wives of Windtor. 

Page 31, Ime 14, Chyll.] I will. Provincial. 
Page 31, line 26, masteries.] Without a master. 
Cymbelin*, act ii, se. 4. 

Page 34, line 3, To avBwi;ce.] To advance ; to 



>T dilemma. "What a 
i the basket." — 



The term o 



12+ 



NOTES. 



Page 35, tine 33, Conjecte.] Ta think; to cocjectnn. Then 
occurs in an early edition of Othello, lii., 3, in [dace of eoueeilt in tha 
foliu. 

Se ye not dnyly of nil inaner estate, 
How in the Uwc they travers and conjfct. 

Tht Hye If'ny to the Spyllell Hoia, n. d. 

Page 36. line 18, Wnrrantyse.] Warrant, or »urety. The tcnn i> 
used in Shakespeare's Henry VI., First Part. 

Page 36, line 25, Curamc] Ctmne, MS. 

Page 37, line 10, Trym.] Neatly. " He that shot io trim." — Romeo 
and Juliet. 

Page 37, line 27, Qucoye.] Squeamish, sick with naiues. Hence, 
metaphorically, troubled. Shakcsperian commentators have not entered 
quite iiilly into the uses of this word, which occurs in Much Ado about 
Nothing, Antony and Cleopatra, and Lear. " So manie of hir Majesties 
privie councell aa could in that guesie time be assembled." — Bolinabed, 
Chronicles of Ireland, p. 136. 

Page 38, line 8, Sparljng.] The smelt was so called, but I do not 
remember to have seen the term used elsewhere as one of endeftrmenL 

Page 39, line 5, Gre.] Agree. — Merchant of Venice. 

Page 40, line 16, Dysplesant.] Unpleaaing. See Dnaa/uS of Rohert 
Earl of Huntington, act i., sc. 1. 

Page 41, line 23, Lowted.] This word occura in 1 Henry VI., incor- 
rectly explained by all editors. See my Dictionary of Archais77a,p.53}. 

Page 45, line II, Monyshyd.] Admonished. 

Page 53, line 1, To wry.] To turn.— See Cymbeline. 

Page 65, line 12, Hey nony nnnye.] It is scarcely necessary to ob- 
serve this is a burden in a song in Much Ado about Nothing. 

Page 59, line 8, I bare the pryce.] Excelled, bore away the prize. 
Sche seyde, y have welle sped. 
That sochc a lorde hath me wedd, 
That beryth the pryce in prcei. 

MS. Caatah., Ff. ii. 38, f. 82. 

Page 5i), line 12. Provde.] Prnve, MS. 

Page 62, line 4, Urownd,] Burden. 

Page 63, line 5, To-rcnt.] Tear in pieces. (A.S.) 

Page 63. line 7, Peclde.] Pilled, luld. It seenu to be used here m a 
term of contempt. 

Page 64, line 6, Siimtyme.) This line appears to have liccn Icfl unfi- 



NOTES. 



ISS 



Page 64, line 12, By thes ten bones.] Tbia,of conrw, nllmlcB W the 
fingera of the speaker. " By these ten bones, my lords, ho did spenk 
them to me in the garret one night, as we were scouring my lord of 
Tork-g armour."— 2 Henry VI. 

Page 64, line 29, Nest.] Company. "A nest of traiton." — H'iater's 
TaU. act ii.,sc3. 

Foge 6o, line 8, The hunt ys up.] Thia was the name of the song or 
tune used for waking hunters in the morning, "Hunta-up to the day." 
— Romeo and JuUet. 

Page 65, line 21, Expolce.] To eipcl. Shakespeare uses the term in 
the First Part of Henry VI. 

Page 68, line 18, Persever.] This fine old word, the accent, of course, 
on the second syllable, should never be lost sight of by our editors. 
Page 70, Hue 11, Woode.] Mad. 

Page 71, line 5, Dnive me,] "A troubled mind drave me to w»lk." — 
Romeo and Juliet. 

Page 71, line 2a, To-brast.] Burst in pieces. 

Page 72, line 9, Which L] An unnecessary alteration is made here in 
the original manuscript. 

Page 74, line 7, Fair words make fools fain.] This poem was written 
by Edwards, and is printed in the "Paradise of Dayntie Devises." The 
variations between the copies are very triSing. 

Page 7A, line 1, Tickle.] Uncertain ; inconstant. " Stands on a tickle 
point." — 2 Henry VI. 

Page 77, line 18, Bringe.] Brange, MS. 
Page 78, line 5, Fautyng.] Committing faults. 
Page 78, line 22, Remove them.] Origiually, must take in. 
Page 80, line 5, Lyther.] Wicked. (A. S.) 

Page SO, line 19, Long have I.] There is another copy of this song in 

MS. Cotton. Vcspas. A. xxv , which is printed in Collier's Annals of the 

Stage, i., 70. It contains many variatious from the version here priiiled. 

Page BO, line 27, Bangyth-] Rei/pttthe. Cotton. MS 

Page 81, line 2, Above all partes.] The next stanza in the Coltuuiuu 

MS. fol. 141, is as follows, — 

Of all our partes, if any e Jarre, 

Blame not the meaue, beinge songe trewe < 
The meane must make, it mayo not marre; 
Lackinge the mcanc, our mlrthe adewe t 
Thus showthe the meane not nieanelic well, 
Yet dolhe the meane in this cxcell. 



1 2l> NOTEB. 

It should be observed that in the Cottonisn manuscript this song ia 
bnted to Heywood, but the MS, here printed is, I suspect, a better antho- 
rity on that point, and it is there ascribed to Itedford. 

Page B1,)ine 17, Bealde.] Seldom. The nord i» used bv Shakeiipesre 
in Troilus and Cressida. 

Page 86, line 25, All a grene wyllow.] This ia perhaps the earliest 
song with the willow burden, a choru« inunortalized by Shakespeare in 
Utbello. The following copy of the later song i« taken from MS Adilil. 
15117, in the Ilritish MuBeum, written about (he year 1633. 
The poore Boule sate sighinge by a dckamore tree. 

Singe willo, willo, willo; 
With his hand in hb bosoiu, and his hcade u)x>n bis ki 

O willo, willo, willo! 
0, willo, willo, willo, willo, shatbe my gsrclandf 
Singe all a greeue willo, 
Willo, willo, willo ! 
Aye roe, the greene willo must be my gareland. 

He sight in his singinge and made a greate moanc. siugc &c. 
I ain deode to all pleasure, my trewe love he is gone, &c. 
The niutc bird sate by bym was made tame by his moancs, See. 
The trewe teares fell from hym would have nicltcd the stones, i 

Cant all you forsaken and nioume you with mee, 

AVho Bpeake« of a blue love, myncs falser then shcc. singe Sec. 

liet love no more boast her in pallas nor bower ; 

It budds, but it blast«the ere il be a flowere. singe be. 

Tbowe faire and more false, I dye w"' thy wounde; 

Thowe bast lost the truest lover that goes ujKin the ground I ni^ Ac 

Let nobody chydc her, her scornes I approve; 

Bhee was borne to be false, and I tn dye for love, singe he. 




Take this for my farewell and latest adewe; 

Write this on ray toml^ that in love I was trewe. nioge &c. 
PigB 88, line 13, Behowlde.] The tune of Queen Dido 
k great fikvourite, and Mr. Collier considers this to he ihc original 
Page 96, line 19, In good quarte.J In great joy. 
Page 98, line 10, Name.] Ame. MS. 
Page 99, line 3, Pyghtc.] Prepared. Literally, jilaced. 




I 

fonnerl/ ^H 
al ballad. H 

filed. It^l 



NOTES. 127 

occnrain King Lear, and Troilui ami Crcoidn; "Tound him pight toduit." 
Page 100, line 10, Achevc] Originally written achyve. 
Pnge 101, line 6, And.] OrigiDalty written the. 
Page IOl', line 14, Rejoyse.] R^ose, MS. 

Page 104, line 13, Be merye, frendes.] A mtMlcrnized copy of this 
ballad, printeO about the year 1600, is printed in Collier'a Roichnrghe 
Ballads, p. 135. 

Page 106, line 4, Make vertiie of nesaesfytce.] This isa very old pro- 
verb, aDd is not obsolete. 

Arc you content to be our general, 

To make a virtue of necesaity. 

And live, as we do, in this wildemcaa. 

Two Gtnlhtnen of Vtrona, act iv., k. 1. 
Page lOfi, line 13, Be mery.] The five concluding stunzas of the 
modemiiod ballad take the place of (he two last ones of that here printed ; 
and I give them, were they merely to aflbrd an examptc of Sly's phrnae, 
"let the world slide," in Taming of the Shrew, induction. 
The loss of wealth is loss of dirt, 
As sages in all times assert \ 
The happy 's man's without a shirt, 

Be merrv, friends. 



i 



All seasons are to him the Spring, 
In flowers bright and florishing, 
With birds upon the tree or wing. 
Who in their flwhion alway sing 
Be merrj", friends. 

If that thy doublet ba« « hole in. 
Why, it can keep the less thy soule in. 
Which rangeth Iborth bej'ond conirouUing, 
Whilst thou hasi nought to do but trolling, 
Be merrv, friends. 



Be merry in God, St. Paule saith plaii 
Be merry in God, I say again. 
And let not his advice be vain ; 
Or, if thou wilt, thou caiinol complaii 
Be merry, friends! 



I^ the world sliilv, let the world go : 



Afigf. 



Hill a fig for w 



If I CMit pay, why. 1 ci 



And death make^ tHiuall I)ie liigb and low. 
Bl' merry, frieoda I 
Page 107, liue 2, All tynie.] A duplicate reraion of tbis line i 
MS- rends torrowes. 

Page 111, Ifne 6, But yf thow.] The errangement of tbe aOue 
tluB poem in tbe US, is somewhat obscure, and niny be intcipretMl i 
nays, following one series of dirccliouK, the preseut stunck tron 
the fourth. 

Page lll,linul3, Thow.] This word U not in the MS. 
Pagu 111, line 16, bifeut.] Infected, tainted. So in TftUau 
Cresoidu, — 

Arid in the imitation of these twain. 
Who, an Ulysaea eays, opinion crowt 
With an inipcTial voice, many are infect, 
Page Hi, line 5. Cheere.] Qu. cleere 9 
Page 112, line 10, Fare.] Faree,MS. 
Page ll'J, line i9, Then all good, &c.] Originally thui 
Wherfure all doubtcs to rulinquiabe. 



] A kind of scimitar. 
I persuver.J His tu pcrwver, MS. 
tJi*e. It is occasionally used Car tm 



o Bteale, I U 



Page 114, line 2, Gar.] 

Page 115, line 5, Skayo 

Page 118, liue 27, Him 

Page 1-21, line 6, Ure.] tJi*e. It is 
fortune. 

And some men are so prune 
It is as nat'rall as their roeate and drinke; 
They arc borne tu't, and cannot doe withall, 
And must be filching still, whale'r hefall, 
A wispe of rushes, or a clod of laud. 
Or any waddc of hay that's next to hand, 
They'l Bteale, and for it have a good excuse. 
They doe't to keejx: their hands in urf or use. 
Taylor's Workea. fol. ICSO, 



4S. 



I 



J 






»«• 



"Stanford Unlyersity Utirary 

* >"* Stanford, California 

He "T "f" 

In order Ibst others may use this book, 
please return it as soon ss possible, but 
not later than the date due. 



I 

i