Sidor som bilder

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 Nylus 3 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 fore 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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V. 44, besy courte. P. C.

V. 49, partyes, P. C.

3 Nysus P. C.

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 aye she laments the deadlye feude
Betweene her house and thine.


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,

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 hye 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:

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Come, mount this faire palfraye:

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

Nowe nay, nowe nay, thou gentle knight,
Nowe nay, 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?


Ah! well I wot, he never would rest,

Nor his meate should doe him no goode, Till he had slayne thee, Child of Elle,

And seene thy deare hearts bloode."

O ladye, wert thou in thy saddle sette,
And a little space him fro,


I would not care for thy cruel father,
Nor the worst that he could doe.

O ladye, wert thou in thy saddle sette,
And once without this walle,


I would not care for thy cruel father,
Nor the worst that might befalle.

Faire Emmeline sighed, fair Emmeline wept,
And aye her heart was woe:


At length he seizde her lilly-white hand,
And downe the ladder he drewe:

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Quoth shee, My lord shall knowe of this,

Soe I shall have golde and fee.

Awake, awake, thou baron bolde!

Awake, my noble dame!

Your daughter is fledde with the Child of Elle,

To doe the deede of shame.



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