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By leue of the lord þat pe lond aght. After custome to kepe as the Kyng set, 380 Chethes full soberly & with sad wordes,

Has grauntid godely pat he go shuld,
Soiorne pere a season, assay when hym lyke.
Be pan burdes were bred in the brade halle,
384 And po mighty to meite meuit belyue,

With all deintes on dese put were dere holden;
Walid wyne for to wete wantid þai none,
In grete goblettes of gold yche gome hade.

388 The Kyng was full curtais, calt on a maiden,

Bede his doughter come downe & his dere heire,
To sit by pat semely, and solas to make.
This maiden full mylde, Medea was callid,
Whan she sought into sale salute hom all,
With loutyng full low to hir lefe fadir.
She was eldist & heire etlit to his londes,
Hym chefet thurghe chaunse childer no mo;
And she at hond for to haue husband for age,
Byg ynoghe vnto bed with a bold knight.
She was luffly of lere & of lore wise,


All the cause of his come to Calcos was pan: ffor the flammond fles pat fele had desyrid, He hade wille for to wyn & away lede,

And kyndly hade conyng in the clene artis : 400 pere was no filisofers so fyn found in pat lond, Might approche to put precious apoint of her wit.



Of nygramansi ynogh to note when she liket, And all the fetes full faire in a few yeres. 404 Wyndis at hir wille to wakyn in the aire,

Gret showres to shede & shynyng agayne,
Haile from the heuyn in a hond while,

And the light make les as hir lefe thought;
Merke at the mydday & the mone chaunge,


To clere Sune into Clippis & the cloudes dym;
The Elementes ouerturne & the erthe qwake,
fflodes with forse flow agayne the hilles;
Bowes for to beire in the bare winttur,
ffor to florisshe faire & pe frute bryng;
Yong men yepely yarke into Elde,

And the course agayne calle into clere youthe.

416 All thies Japes ho enioynit as Gentils beleued, All thies maistres & mo she made in hir tyme, Als put is in poisé and prikkit be Ouyd,

bat feynit in his fablis & other fele stories. 420 Hit ys lelly not like, ne oure belefe askys,


bat suche ferlies shuld fall in a frale woman ;
But only gouernaunse of God þat þe ground

And ilke a planet hase put in a plaine course, 424 pat turnys as pere tyme comys, trist ye non other.

As he formed hom first flitton þai neuer ;

Ne the clere Sune neuer clippit out of course yet, But whan Criste on the crosse for our care deghit; 428 Than it lost hade the light as our lord wold, Erthe dymmed by dene, ded men Roose, The gret tempull top terned to ground. This Medea the maiden, pat I mynt first, 432 pat gay was in garmentes & of good chere,

Book II.


and Ovid sung; but such power is impossible in a frail woman, and belongs only to God.

The bright sun was never eclipsed

out of course but

when Christ died "for our care."

And als wemen haue wille in þere wilde youthe,
To fret hom with fyn perle, & paire face paint,
With pelur and pall & mony proude rynges,
436 Euyn set to pe sight and to seme faire :

This gentill by Jason ioinet was to sit,

(fol. 9 a.) Medea richly

beside Jason, as the king commands.

As be comaundement in courtte of hir kynd fader. dressed sits Hit is wonder of the wit of this wise kyng, 440 Wold assent to pat sytting pat hym sewet after, And his doughter to dresse in daunger of loue, To sit with pat semely in solas at þe meite. Syn wemen are wilfull & pere wit chaunges,

Book II.

When Medea is set between her father and Jason she blushes for shame. With fear and longing she glances at each, till,

quite overcome with love, she can neither eat nor drink.

(fol. 9 b.)

But she keeps it close in her heart, and speaks thus with herself:

"I would yon worthy had wed me! At board and bel I were blessed.


And so likrus of loue in likyng of yowthe, bis vnwarnes of wit wrixlis hys mynd. What forthers pi fare and pi false goddes, And Mars the mighty þat þu mykill trist? 448 Agayne pe wyles of wemen to wer is no bote.


When this mylde in hir maner was at þe meite


Betwene hir fader and pe freke, þat I first ment,
Hir shire fface all for shame shot into rede,
452 And a likyng of loue light in her hert;

Hir Ene as a trendull turned full rounde,
ffirst on hir fader, for feare pat she hade,

And sethyn on pat semely with a sad wille;
456 Smale likyng of loue lurkit in hir mynde,

And she light on pat lede with a loue egh ;
ffirst on his face fresshe to beholde,
And his lookes full louely lemond as gold,
460 And all ffeturs to ffynd fourmed o right.


The sight of pat semely sanke in hir herte,
And rauysshed hir radly pe rest of hir sawle,
Sho hade no deintithe to dele with no deire


464 And hir talent was taken for tastyng of wyne.

Soche likyng of loue lappit hir with in,

That euyn full was þat fre and no fode touchet
And pat keppit she close in hir clene hert,

That no wegh pat hir waited wist of hir thought;
But hir semblaund so sad was semond to hom.
Mony thoughtes full thro thrange in hir brest,
And pus sho spake in hir sprete if ho spede

472 "I wold yonder worthy weddit me hade,
Bothe to burde to bede blessid were I:
So comly, so cleane to clippe vpon nightes,

So hardy, so hynd in hall for to se,


476 So luffly, so lykyng with lapping in armys;
Well were that woman might weld hym
Dissyring full depely in her derne hert,
As maner is of maydons pat maynot for shame,
480 ffor to languysshe in loue till pere lere chaunge:
Shentyng for shame to shew furth pere ernd,


As pai wylne to be woghit pere worship to saue. Mony burdys bene broght to paire bare dethe, 484 þat wondyn for wonderfful paire wille for to



488 Be leue of pe lordes and pe ledys all.

Whan pe fest and þe fare was faren to the ende,
And burdes borne downe, burnes on fote,
Medea myldly mevet to chaumber

The Knightes at the Kyng cachyn pere leue,
Intill a chaumber full choise chosen þere way
Be comaundement of pe Kyng, & pe courtte

Medea the mylde, þat I ment first,
Wox pale for pyne in hir priuy chamber,
In a longyng of loue as the lowe hote,
With a Sykyng vnsounde, pat souet to hir hert;
496 She compast kenly in hir clene wit

ffor to bring it aboute & hir bale voide.

Thus sho drof forth hir dayes in hir depe thoght,
With weping and wo all the woke ouer,

500 Till it fell hir by fortune, as I fynd here,

Book II.


Medea retires to her own chamber,

and in a longing

of love seeks to compass her desire.

(fol. 10 a.)

On a day, as the Dukes were ouer des set,
And comynd with the Kyng of Knighthode in King are

One day, as the
Dukes and the


cominuning, Eetes bids her come and sit by the knights to

Chethes for pat semly sent into chamber, 504 Bade his doughter come doune to hir dere fader: solace them.

And sho obeit his bone, & of boure come
In clothes as be-come for a kynges doughter,
And obeit the bolde, and bowet hir fader;

Book II.

She sits beside Jason; and while the company are eagerly listening to Hercules, the lovers are left to themselves.

Medea excuses herself to Jason for speaking to him so freely.

(fol. 10 b.)

Such courtesy is due to him as a stranger.


And he assignet hir a seite, pat hir-selfe liket,
With chere for cherys the chiualrus Knightes,
As maner was of Maidones, with hir myld chere.
His comaundment to kepe sho hir course held,
512 And Joynet by Jason iustly to sit;

And he welcomed þat worthy as he well kouthe:
A litill set hym on syde, & a seet leuet,

ffor to mele with pat maidyn & hir mode here. 516 The Kyng with other knightes hade comford to


Ercules of armes, & auntres to telle

Of chiualry & chaunce, pat cheuyt hym before, þat no lede was lelly po louers betwene,

520 But þai might say by hom-self all pere sad wille.




With a compas of clennes to colour hir speche. 524 In sauyng hir-seluen and serche of his wille, "Now frynd," quod pat faire, "as ye bene fre holden,


The woman was war þat no wegh herd,

And vnder shadow of shame shewid forth hir

Will ye suffer me to say, and the sothe telle?
Voidis me noght of vitius, [ne] vilaus of tunge;
Ne deme no dishonesty in your derfe hert,
hof I put me pus pertly my purpos to shewe.
Hit sittes, me semeth, to a sure knyghte,
bat ayres into vnkoth lond auntres to seche,
532 To be counseld in case to comfford hym-seluyn,

Of sum fre pat hym faith awe, & pe fete knoweth ;
This curtysy he claymes as for clere det,

And be chaunce may chere hym & cheue to pe


I wot ssir, ye are wight & a wegh nobill,
Auntrus in armes, & able of person;

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