Sidor som bilder

That for the very perfect bryghtnes

What of the tower and of the cleare sunne,
I could nothyng behold the goodlines

Of that palaice, whereas Doctrine did wonne:
Tyll at the last, with mysty wyndes donne,
The radiant brightnes of golden Phebus
Auster gan cover with clowde tenebrus.

Then to the tower I drewe nere and nere,
And often mused of the great hyghnes

Of the craggy rocke, which quadrant did appeare:
But the fayre tower, (so much of ryches
Was all about,) sexangled doubtles;



Gargeyld with greyhoundes, and with many lyons, 20 Made of fyne golde; with divers sundry dragons 1.

The little 'turretts' with ymages of golde

About was set, whiche with the wynde aye moved
With propre vices, that I did well beholde
About the tower, in sundry wyse they hoved
With goodly pypes, in their mouthes ituned,
That with the wynd they pyped a daunce
Iclipped Amour de la hault plesaunce.



The toure was great of marveylous wydnes,

To whyche ther was no way to passe but one,


Into the toure for to have an intres:

A grece there was ychesyld all of stone
Out of the rocke, on whyche men dyd gone
Up to the toure, and in lykewyse dyd I
Wyth bothe the Grayhoundes in my company 2:


Tyll that I came unto a ryall gate,

Where I saw stondynge the goodly Portres,

Ver. 25, towers. P. C.

1 Greyhounds, lions, dragons, were at that time the royal supporters.

2 This alludes to a former part of the poem.

Whyche axed me, from whence I came a-late;
To whome I gan in every thynge expresse
All myne adventure, chaunce, and busynesse,
And eke my name; I tolde her every dell:
Whan she herde this she lyked me right well.

Her name, she sayd, was called COUNTENAUNCE;
Into the 'base' courte she dyd me then lede,
Where was a fountayne depured of plesance,
A noble sprynge, a ryall conduyte-hede,
Made of fyne golde enameled with reed;
And on the toppe four dragons blewe and stoute
Thys dulcet water in four partes dyd spoute.

Of whyche there flowed foure ryvers ryght clere,
Sweter than Nylus3 or Ganges was ther odoure;
Tygrys or Eufrates unto them no pere:

I dyd than taste the aromatyke lycoure,
Fragraunt of fume, and swete as any floure;
And in my mouthe it had a marveylous scent
Of divers spyces, I knewe not what it ment.

And after thys further forth me brought
Dame Countenaunce into a goodly Hall,
Of jasper stones it was wonderly wrought:
The wyndowes cleare depured all of crystall,
And in the roufe on hye over all
Of golde was made a ryght crafty vyne;
Instede of grapes the rubies there did shyne.

The tore was paved with berall clarified,
With pillers made of stones precious,
Like a place of pleasure so gayely glorified,
It myght be called a palaice glorious,
So muche delectable and solacious;







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The hall was hanged hye and circuler
With cloth of arras in the rychest maner.
That treated well of a ful noble story,

Of the doubty waye to the Tower Perillous 4;
Howe a noble knyght should wynne the victory
Of many a serpente foule and odious.

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The Child of Elle.

Is given from a fragment in the Editor's folio MS.; which, though extremely defective and mutilated, appeared to have so much merit, that it excited a strong desire to attempt a completion of the story. The reader will easily discover the supplemental stanzas by their inferiority, and at the same time be inclined to pardon it, when he considers how difficult it must be to imitate the affecting simplicity and artless beauties of the original.

Child was a title sometimes given to a knight. See Gloss.

ON yonder hill a castle standes,
With walles and towres bedight,
And yonder lives the Child of Elle,
A younge and comely knighte.

The Child of Elle to his garden wente,


And stood at his garden pale,

Whan, lo! he beheld fair Emmelines page
Come trippinge downe the dale.

The Child of Elle he hyed him thence,

Y-wis he stoode not stille,


And soone he mette faire Emmelines page

Come climbing up the hille.

Nowe Christe thee save, thou little foot-page,

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And here shee sends thee a silken scarfe
Bedewde with many a teare,

And biddes thee sometimes thinke on her,
Who loved thee so deare.

And here shee sends thee a ring of golde
The last boone thou mayst have,


And biddes thee weare it for her sake,
Whan she is layde in grave.

For, ah! her gentle heart is broke,

And in grave soone must shee bee,

Sith her father hath chose her a new new love,
And forbidde her to think of thee.

Her father hath brought her a carlish knight,
Sir John of the north countràye,

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And within three dayes shee must him wedde,
Or he vowes he will her slaye.


Nowe hye thee backe, thou little foot-page,
And greet thy ladye from mee,

And telle her that I her owne true love

Will dye, or sette her free.

Nowe bye thee backe, thou little foot-page,
And let thy fair ladye know

This night will I bee at her bowre-windowe,
Betide me weale or woe.


The boye he tripped, the boye he ranne,
He neither stint ne stayd

Untill he came to fair Emmelines bowre,
Whan kneeling downe he sayd,

O ladye, Ive been with thy own true love,
And he greets thee well by mee;

This night will he bee at thy bowre-windowe,
And dye or sette thee free.

Nowe daye was gone, and night was come,
And all were fast asleepe,

All save the ladye Emmeline,


Who sate in her bowre to weepe:

And soone shee heard her true loves voice
Lowe whispering at the walle,

Awake, awake, my deare ladyè,

Tis I thy true love call.


Awake, awake, my ladye deare,

Come, mount this faire palfràye:

This ladder of ropes will lette thee downe,
Ile carrye thee hence awaye.

Nowe nay,

Nowe nay, nowe nay, thou gentle knight, this may not bee;


For aye sould I tint my maiden fame,
If alone I should wend with thee.

O ladye, thou with a knighte so true,
Mayst safelye wend alone,


To my ladye mother I will thee bringe,

Where marriage shall make us one.

"My father he is a baron bolde, Of lynage proude and hye;

And what would he saye if his daughter
Awaye with a knight should fly?


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