תמונות בעמוד

Ne fainers daies had in remembraunce,
Mo will had he to daliaunce.
To ferchen out a bellamie,
He had a sharp and licorous eie ;
But it wold bett abide a lcke,
Or onion, than the sight of Greke :
Wherefore, God yeve him shame, Boccace
Serv'd him for Basil and Ignace,
His vermeil cheke that shon wyth mirth,
Spake him the blitheft prieit on yearth :
At chyrch, to thew his lillied hond,
Full fetously he prank'd his bond;
Sleke weren his flaxen locks ykempt,
And Ifaac Wever was hc nempt.

Thilke clerke, echaufed in the groyne,
For a young damosell did pyne,
Born in East-Cheap; who, by my fay,
Ypert was as a popinjay :
Ne wit ne wordes did the waunt,
Wele cond she many a romaunt
Ore muscadine, or spiced ale,
She carrold foote as nightingale :
And for the nonce couth rowle her eyne,
Withouten fpeche; a speciall figne
She lack'd fomdele of what ech dame
Holds dere as life, yet dredes to name :
So was eftfoons by Isaac won,
To blissful consummation.

Here mought I now teilen the festes,
Who yave the bryde, low bibb’d the gheftes;

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But withouten such gawdes, I trow
Myne legend is prolix ynow.
Ryghte wele areeds Dan Prior's song,
A tale shold never be too long;
And sikerly in fayre Englond
None bett doeth taling understond.

She now, algates full fad to chaunge
The citee for her husbond's graunge,
To Kent mote ; for she wele did knowe
'Twas vaine ayenst the streme to rowe.
Sa wend they on one steed yfere,
Ech cleping toder life and dere;
Heven shilde hem fro myne Bromley host,
Or many a groat theyr meel woll cost.

Deem next ye maistress Wever sene
Yclad in fable bombasine;
The frankeleins wyves accost her blythe,
Curteis to guilen hem of tythe ;
And yeve honour parochiall
In pew, and eke at festivall.
Worship and wealth her husbond hath ;
Ne poor in aught, fave werks and faith :
Kepes bull, bore, stallion, to dispence
Large pennorths of benevolence.
His berne ycrammed was, and store
Of poultrie cackled at the dore ;
Ilis wyf grete joie to fede hem toke,
And was astonied at the cocke;
That, in his portaunce debonair,
On everich henn bestow'd a share


Of plesaunce, yet no genitours
She saw, to thrill his paramours :
Oftsithes she mokel mus'd theron,
Yet nift she howgates it was don.

One night, ere they to sleepen went,
Her Ifaac in her arms she hent,
As was her usage ; and did saie,
Of charite I mote thee praie,
To techen myne unconnyng wit
One thing it comprehendeth niet:
And maie the foul fiend harrow thee,
If in myne quest thou falfen me.

Our Chaunticlere loves everich hen,
Ne fewer kepes our yerd than ten ;
Yet romps he ore beth grete and small,
Ne ken I what he swinks wythall.
But on ech leg a wepon is,
Ypersent, and full starke I wys;
Doth he with hem at Pertelote play?
In footh theres werk inough for tway.

Qd. Ifaac, certes by Sainct Poule,
Myne lief thou art a simple foule ;
Foules fro the egle to the wren,
Bin harness'd othergise than men :
For the inales engins of delite,
Ferre in theyr entrails are empight ;
Els, par mischaunce, theyr merriment
Emong the breers mought fore be fhent.
Thus woxen hote, they much avaunce
Love of venereal jouisaunce ;


And in one month, the trouth to fayne,
Sirink mo than manhode in


O Benedicite! qd. the,
If kepyng hute so kindlych be,
Hie in thyne boweles truss thyne gere,
And eke the fkrippe that daungleth here.

Ne dame, he answerd, mote that bene;
For as I hope to be a dene,
Thilke Falstaffe-bellie rownd and big,
Was built for corny ale and pig :
Ne in it is a chink for these,
Ne for a wheat-straw, and tway pease.

Pardie, qd. fhe, futh theres nat room,
Swete Nykin! chafe hem in myne woom.

Τ Ο Μ R. Ρ Ο Ρ Ε.


In which the poet supposeth Apollo to have given

this answer to one who enquired who was the author

of the Iliad, *Ηειδον μεν Έγών, εχάρασσε δε θεία- “ΌμηρG.

Hæc modulabar ego, fcripfit divinus Homerus. WHEN Phæbus, and the nine harmonious Maids,

Of old assembled in the Thespian shades, What theme, they cry'd, what high immortal air, Befits these harps to sound, and thce to hear :


Reply'd the god, Your lofriest notes employ
Tosing young Peleus, and the fall of Troy.
The wondrous fong with rapture they rehearse,
Then ask who wrought that miracle of verse.
He answer'd with a frown: I now reveal
A truth, that Envy bids me not conceal.
Retiring frequent to his laureat vale,
I warbled to the lyre that favourite tale,
Which, unobferv'd, a wandering Greek and blind,
Heard me repeat, and treasur'd in his mind;
And, fir’d with thirit of more than mortal praise,
From me the god of wit ufurp'd the bays.

But let vain Greece indulge her growing fame,
Proud with celestial spoils to grace her name :
Yet when my arts shall triumph in the West,
And the White lile with female power is blest,
Fame, I foresee, will make reprisals there,
And the translator's palm to me transfer ;
With less regret my claim I now decline,
The world will think this English Iliad mine.



THENE'ER I wed, young Strephon cry'd,

Ye powers that o'er the noose preside,
Wit, beauty, wealth, good-humour give,
Or let me still a rover live :
But if all these no nymph can share,
Let mine, ye powers ! be doubly fair,


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