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ACHILLES RUSHES TO BATTLE.
10188 Thai told hym full tyte, the troiens with forse Gird doun the grekes, & the ground wan; Takyn þere tenttes, turnyt hom vnder;
Oppressit hom with payn & with pale strokes;
10192 And pai no pouer hade plainly to put hom abake. "And 3e, that hopyn in hele here for to leng, Sekir of your selfe, & no sore pole!
Hit shall hap you to haue in a hond while, 10196 ffyfty thowsaund fell folke out of Troy,
To take you with tene & tirne you to ground.
Thai haue no forse hom to fend, þaire fos are so
10200 Withouten socour of suremen pai sothely bene
Achilles for angur angardly swat;
So hatnet his hert in a hote yre,
be loue of his lady pan left was behynd, 10204 Welt into wodnes, wan to his armys,
Strode on a stith horse, stroke into batell.
As a wolfe in his wodenes with wethurs in fold:
10208 He hurlit of helmys, hedis within,
Rent thurgh ribbis, russhit vnfaire :
Tenyt so the troiens with his tore weppon,
That be bent was on blode blent with the erthe, 10212 ffor britnyng of buernes with his bright sword. ban Troiell with tene the tourfer beheld, Knew well the kyng by caupe of his hond,
Reiches his Reynis & his roile strykes,
10216 Caires to be kyng with a kant wille.
The kyng met hym with mayn, macchit hym
Derf dynttes pai delt po doghty betwene,
With paire fawchons fell, femyt of blode.
10220 Troiell carue at the kyng with a kene sword,
Enraged by the slaughter of his soldiers, he forgets his lady love;
(fol. 157 a.) mounts his
horse; and rushes upon the Trojans.
Night ends the battle.
Priam is grieved that Achilles has broken his pledge.
(fol. 157 b.) Polyxena too is disappointed.
Woundit hym wickedly in wer of his lyf, hat he was led to the loge, laid as for dede, But he langurd with lechyng long tyme after. 10224 Troiell in the toile truly was hurt,
But not so dedly his dynttes deiret as Achilles. Thus þai bykirt on the bent till the bare night, pan left þai for late, lordis and other, 10228 Turnyt vnto towne & the toile leuyt.
HERE FAGHT HAI XXT DAYES TO-GEDUR. Xxti dayes by dene with dynttes in feld, pan mett þai with mayn, & mony were kild: pat neuer restid po Renkes fro Risyng of sun, 10232 Of pat noyus note, till þe night come.
pan Priam the prise kyng hade payn at his hert,
ffor Achilles by chaunse hade chaungit his wille,
And breme was in batell his buernes to qwelle. 10236 He blamyt full bitturly pan his blithe qwene, bat euer he tentit hir tale for trifles of hym. He said þat his suranse sothely was fals,
And done for dissait, demit he non other.
Hym to husband haue hade, and hir hap shope.
pan hatnet his hert in a hote yre:
Achilles resolves 10248 To Troiell with tene, pat turnit hym vnder,
to kill Troilus.
And woundit hym wickedly, þes wordes said; "Doutles with dynttes he deghes of my hond, And er he fare out of fight haue a fowle end."
TREACHERY OF ACHILLES.
THE DETHE OF TROILUS, BY ACHILLES TRAYTURLY SLAYNE
IN THE XXJ BATELL.
10252 When hit turnyt to pe tyme torfer shuld rise,
Tho mighty on mold metton to fight,
With thaire batels full breme, bret full of pepull;
And mony bold were pere britnet vpon both
his knights how to capture Troilus.
10256 Achilles the c[h]oise kyng chargit his knightes, Achilles instructs Er þai busket to batell for baret on erthe, þat þai holly on a hepe held hom to-gedur, And mynd of no mater for myschef ne othir, 10260 Saue Troiell to take with torfer þat day; Prese hym with pyne in parties aboute; Cacche hym fro company, close hym within, In myddes his mirmydons þat mighty to hold; 10264 Stuff hym with strenght þat he ne stir might,
But hym-self hym to sle sleghly with hond.
When he meuyt his men pis malis to wirke,
10268 All his mirmydons mightely meuit hym after,
(fol. 158 a.)
The Greeks are driven back.
So britnet with his brond, & brisit the grekes,
10280 His comaundement to kepe kaston hom pen,
The Troiens with tene pai tirnyt to ground,
Kyld of hor knightes & comyns full mony;
The Myrmidons coming forward,
10284 Wet hom with woundis, warpit hom doune, And myche baret on bent to pe buernes did. pan the grekes agayne getton the feld;
ffell was the fight foynyng of speires.
Many fall on both 10288 Miche harme, in þat hete, happit to falle
The Myrmidons surround Troilus;
he defends himself bravely.
Achilles slays him:
(MS. has "mend.")
binds the dead body to his
(fol. 158 b.) horse's tail; and drags it through the
On aither parte with pyne, pat put were to dethe.
The Mirmydons hade mynd of þe mayne troiell, And laited hym on the laund as the lede faght; 10292 The compast the knight, closit hym within,
On yche syde vppon hepes hastely strikon :
& woundit hom wofully a wondurfull noumber.
þat all bare was the buerne aboue on his crowne; 10300 Yet he fendit hym fuersly, fele of hom kild, And gird hom to ground, þat greuyt hom most. Than Achilles with angur come angardly fast, Segh the hathell all to-hurlit, & his hede bare, 10304 And no helpe of his hynd (men) hastid him to. With a fauchon felle he flange at the knight, Slough him full slawthly with sleght of his hond, And hade of [his] hede vndur horse fete.
10308 He light doun lyuely, leuit hym not so,
Homer is reproved for
representing Achilles as the noblest of knights.
10312 Thow Omer, pat oft-tymes openly writis
Of þat buerne in þi boke, as best of his hondes,
HOMER NOT TRUSTWORTHY.
10316 How be reason, or right, or rewle, may pou
To deme hym so doghty in dedis of armys?
And nomly in þis note, so noblely pou sayes, Thurgh strenght of his strokes, stroyet he hase 10320 Two Ectors eger, & to end broght :
The prinse of pat prouynse, pat no pere hade,
One, the strongist in stoure, þat on stede rode.
10324 Lelly pi lesynges pou lappis full faire,
His partiality accounted for by
Thurgh affection & faithe pou fest with the his descent.
As pou said by pþi-selfe, þurgh sibradyn first, Thou was aliet to pat lynage, as by lyne olde, 10328 Or ellis wodenes be wrixlet, & pi wit failet,
And no reason by rewle pat Renke to comend.
10332 The strongest in stoure pat euer on stede rode :
When he caght hade a kyng, as come hym by
10336 And to pull hym of prese paynit hym fast,
10340 Saue the kyng to his company clenly to bryng.
þat þe grekes shuld haue greuyt, & pe gre lost. 10344 And troiell, the tru knight, trayturly he slogh, Noght purgh stowrenes of strokes, ne with
(“sibradyn”= sibreda, kindred, relationship.)
Did not Achilles slay Hector treacherously?
And did he not
slay Troilus when
he was sur
rounded and exhausted?