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His hardy herte might him helpe nought,
He most abyde whan that he was caught,
By force, and eek by composicioun.
Who sorweth now but woful Palamoun,
That moot nomore gon agayn to fight ?
And whan that Theseus had seen that sight,
He cryed, “Hoo! nomore, for it is doon !
Ne noon schal lenger unto his felaw goon.
I wol be trewe juge, and nought partye.
Arcyte of Thebes schal have Emelye,
That hath by his fortune hire i-wonne.”
Anoon ther is noyse bygonne
For joye of this, so lowde and hey withalle,
It semed that the listes wolde falle.
What can now fayre Venus doon above?
What seith sche now? what doth this queen of love ?
But wepeth so, for wantyng of hir wille,
Til that hire teeres in the lystes fille:
Sche seyde: “I am aschamed douteles.”
Satournus seyde: “Doughter, hold thy pees. 2670
Mars hath his wille, his knight hath his boone,
And by myn heed thou schalt be esed soone.”
The trompes with the lowde mynstralcy,
The herawdes, that ful lowde yolle and cry,
Been in here joye for daun Arcyte.
But herkneth me, and stynteth but a lite,
Which a miracle bifel anoon.
This Arcyte fersly hath don his helm adoun,
And on his courser for to schewe his face
He priked endlange in the large place,
Lokyng upward upon this Emelye ;
And sche agayn him cast a frendly yghe,
(For wommen, as for to speke in comune,
Thay folwe alle the favour of fortune)
And was alle his in cheer, and in his hert.
Out of the ground a fyr infernal stert,
From Pluto send, at the request of Saturne,
For which his hors for feere gan to turne,
And leep asyde, and foundred as he leep:
And or that Arcyte may take keep,
He pight him on the pomel of his heed,
That in that place he lay as he were deed,
His brest to-broken with his sadil bowe.
As blak he lay as eny col or crowe,
So was the blood y-ronne in his face.
Anon he was y-born out of the place
With herte sore, to Theseus paleys.
Tho was he corven out of his harneys,
And in a bed y-brought ful fair and blyve,
For yit he was in memory and on lyve,
And alway cryeng after Emelye.
Duk Theseus, and al his companye,
Is comen hom to Athenes his cité,
With alle blys and gret solempnité.
Al be it that this aventure was falle,
He nolde nought discomforten hem alle.
Men seyde eek, that Arcita schuld nought dye,
He schal be helyd of his maladye.
And of another thing they were as fayn,
That of hem alle ther was noon y-slayn,
Al were they sore hurt, and namely oon,
That with a spere was thirled his brest boon.
To other woundes, and to broken armes,
Some hadde salve, and some hadde charmes,
Fermacyes of herbes, and eek save
They dronken, for they wolde here lyves have.
For which this noble duk, as he wel can,
Comforteth and honoureth every man,
And made revel al the lange night,
Unto the straunge lordes, as was right.
Ne ther was holden no discomfytyng,
But as a justes or as a turneying;
For sothly ther was no discomfiture,
For fallynge is but an adventure.
Ne to be lad with fors unto the stake
Unyolden, and with twenty knightes take,
A person allone, withouten moo,
And rent forth by arme, foot, and too,
And eke his steede dryven forth with staves,
With footemen, bothe yemen and eke knaves,
It was aretted him no vylonye :
Ne no maner man heldn it no cowardye.
For which Theseus lowd anon leet crie,
2714, 2715.—charmes-save. It may be observed that the salves charms, and cies of herbs, were the principal remedies of the physican in the age of Chaucer. Save (salvia, the herb sage), was considered one of the most universally efficient of the medieval remedies.
To stynten al rancour and al envye,
The gree as wel on o syde as on other,
And every side lik, as otheres brother :
And gaf hem giftes after here degré,
And fully heeld a feste dayes thre:
And conveyed the knightes worthily
Out of his toun a journee largely.
And hom went every man the righte way,
Ther was no more, but “Farwel, have good day!"
Of this batayl I wol no more endite,
But speke of Palamon and of Arcyte.
Swelleth the brest of Arcyte, and the sore
Encresceth at his herte more and more.
The clothred blood, for
Corrumpith, and is in his bouk i-laft,
That nother veyne blood, ne ventusyng,
Ne drynk of herbes may ben his helpyng.
2750 The vertu expulsif, or animal, Fro thilke vertu cleped natural, Ne may the venym voyde, ne expelle. The pypes of his lounges gan to swelle, And every lacerte in his brest adoun Is schent with venym and corrupcioun. Him gayneth nother, for to get his lyf,
2738.-dayes thre. Three days were the usual duration of a feast among our early forefathers. As far back as the seventh century, when Wilfred consecrated his church at Ripon, he held—magnum convivium trium dierum et noctium reges cum omni populo lætificantes. Eddius, Vit. S Wilf. c. 17. I am told that in Scotland these feasts of three days and three nights, have been preserved traditionally to a comparatively recent period.
Vomyt up-ward, ne doun-ward laxatif;
Al is to broken thilke regioun ;
Nature hath now no dominacioun.
And certeynly wher nature wil not wirche,
Farwel phisik; go bere the man to chirche.
This al and som, that Arcyte moste dye.
For which he sendeth after Emelye,
And Palamon, that was his cosyn deere.
Than seyd he thus, as ye schul after heere.
"Naught may the woful spirit in myn herte
Declare a poynt of my sorwes smerte
To you, my lady, that I love most;
But I byquethe the service of my gost
Syn that my lyf may no lenger dure.
Allas, the woo! allas, the peynes stronge,
That I for you have suffred, and so longe !
Allas, the deth! allas, myn Emelye!
Allas, departyng of our companye!
Allas, myn hertes queen! allas, my wyf !
Myn hertes lady, ender of my lyf!
What is this world? what asken men to have ?
Now with his love, now in his colde grave
Allone withouten eny companye.
Farwel, my swete, farwel, myn Emelye!
And softe take me in your armes tweye,
For love of God, and herkneth what I seye.
I have heer with my cosyn Palamon
Had stryf and rancour many a day i-gon,