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of a bad age." Hawes was a native of Suffolk, but the dates of his birth and death are not known. He studied in the University of Oxford and afterwards travelled much, becoming "a complete master of the French and Italian poetry."]
LOKED about and saw a craggy roche,
The royal tower of MORALL Document,
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,
Gargeyld' with grayhoundes, and with manylyons,20
* Greyhounds, Lions, Dragons, were at that time the royal supporters.
2 dark. 3 from gargoyle the spout of a gutter.]
The little turrets with ymages of golde
About was set, whiche with the wynde aye moved. Wyth propre vices,' that I did well beholde
About the towers, in sundry wyse they hoved'
The toure was great and of marvelous wydnes,
Into the toure for to have an intres :*
A greces there was y-chesyled all of stone
Where I sawe stondynge the goodly Portres,
* This alludes to a former part of the Poem.
2 heaved. 3 called. 4 entrance. a flight of steps. 6 busy. Percy reads base or lower court. 7 purified.]
Of whyche there flowed foure ryvers ryght clere, 50 Sweter than Nylus* or Ganges was theyr odoure; Tygrys or Eufrates unto them no pere:
I dyd than taste the aromatyke lycoure,
Dame Countenaunce into a goodly Hall,
The flore was paved with berall clarified,
That treated well of a ful noble story,
Of the doubty waye to the Tower Perillous;t Howe a noble knyght should wynne the victory Of many a serpente fowle and odious.
THE CHILD OF ELLE,
S given from a fragment in the Editor's folio MS. which, tho' 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.
[The Child of Ell, as it appears in the folio MS., is a fragment without beginning or ending, so that Percy was forced to add some verses in order to fit it for his book, but the above note does not give any adequate notion of his contributions to the ballad. The verses that are entirely due to the bishop's pen are placed between brackets, and it will be seen from the copy of the original printed at the end that the remaining thirty lines are much altered from it. It is unfortunate that Percy's taste was not sufficient to save him from adding sentimental verses so out of character with the directness of the original as—
"Fair Emmeline sighed, fair Emmeline wept,
And aye her heart was woe:
At length he seized her lilly-white hand,
And downe the ladder he drewe."
On the other hand, the poem as it stands is certainly elegant, and Sir Walter Scott was justified in his high praise when he pointed out the beauty of verses 181-184.
"The baron he stroked his dark brown cheek,
And turned his head aside
To wipe away the starting tear,
He proudly strave to hide."
Scott published a ballad called "Erlinton" for the first time in his Border Minstrelsy, which he says seems to be the rude original, or perhaps a corrupt and imperfect copy of The Child of Elle."
The original fragment from the MS. is worth reading for its own sake as a genuine antique, which must outweigh in interest all manufactured imitations.]
N yonder hill a castle standes
With walles and towres bedight,1
The Child of Elle to his garden wente,
Whan, lo! he beheld fair Emmelines page
The Child of Elle he hyed him thence,
And soone he mette faire Emmelines page
Nowe Christe thee save, thou little foot-page,
Oh telle me how does thy ladye gaye,
My lady shee is all woe-begone,
And the teares they falle from her eyne;
And here shee sends thee a silken scarfe
And biddes thee sometimes thinke on her,
And here shee sends thee a ring of golde