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THE GRIEF OF PRIAM AND HIS FAMILY,

283

Book XXI.

The body of þat bold was broght to his fader,
With all the kynges full clene, & þe kid Dukes. Hector is borne to
With myche care & crie pai comyn hym with,

the palace.
All the Trojan

leaders 8700 Rent of þere riche clothes, ryuyn þere chekes,

accompany it, And setton hym full sorily þat souerain before. with loud

wailing. When Priam, the prise kyng, on the prinse

loked,

Suche a sorow full sodenly sanke in his hert, 8704 Dat he fainted for feble fell on his corse In a swone & a swogh, as he swelt wold. The grief of

Priam and his He was ded, as to deme, þat day mony tymes, family,

ffor the dole & the deire of his dere sone.
8708 Ne hade the buerne from the body bigly ben

draghen,
He hade doutles be dede, & his day comyn.
Miche bale hade his brether, and his blithe

sister :

Hom hade leuer then the lond out of lyue be. 8712 What of Ecuba the honerable, þat was his aune

moder?
The sorow þat ho suffert were solly to here;
& the dole of Andromaca, þat was his dere wife, and or

Andromacha, no
What blod & bright watur on hir brest light !

tongue can tell. 8716 & the sobbyng & the sorow, þat sought hir

within, Hit were tore any tunge tell hit with mouthe! (fol. 155 a.) The dole for þat doghty of his dere fryndes,

Of wepyng, & wayle, & wryngyng of hondes, 8720 Clamur & crie, crakkyng of fyngurs,

Of po ledis þat hym louyt, no lettur might tell !
The body of this bold, þat barely is ded,

Most follow by fourme the freeltie of man : 8724 Hit may not long vpon loft ly vncorruppit,

Ne be keppit thurgh kynd for vnclene ayre.
Then Priam, the prise kyng, prestly gert come

with wise masters Maistu full mony, & men þat were wise. how they might

Priam consults

Book XXI.

a

adorned with

8728 He fraynet at þo fre, with a fyn wille, keep the body of

How the korse might be keppit in his kynd Hector without corruption, and

holl, without sepulture.

ffresshe, vndefacede, & in fyne hew,

As a lede vpon lyue, likyng to se;
8732 And not orible, ne vgly of odir to fele.

Then po maisturs gert make a meruelous toumbe,
Honerable & auonand, in Apolyn temple,

At the prayer of Priam, of a prise werke, 8736 Beside Tiberian, þat in Troy was a triet yate,

ffoundit full faire fele yeres past. They erect a

There set was full solenly besyde the high rich tabernacle on four pillars

aulter, of gold,

A tabernacle triet & tristyly wroght,
8740 Of foure pillers vp pight all of pure gold :

Like ymages were all, abill of shap, images of angels,

Lokend full lyuely as any light angels,

ffro aboue to pe base bright to be-hold, 8744 With full corius korse, & craftely grauen.

Hit was atiryt vmb the top all with triet stones,

Of all kyndes to ken, þat clerkes cold denyse. and gleaming

Hai lemet so light, þat ledes might se with precious 8748 Aboute midnyght merke as with

3; And on dayes to deme, as by due sight, As beamys of bright sun, þat braunchis olofte,

This tabernacle tristy was tyrit on hegh, 8752 Vpon cristall full clere, clustrit with greses, As a gate fro the ground to the gay

herse : hat weghes might walke & waite þerapon.

Aboue on bis bright, as the boke sayes, tabernacle they set a great image 8756 Thos maisturs gert make a meruelous ymage, of gold,

All grauen of gold, a gret & a longe, representing

Amyt after Ector, abill of shap, Hector menacing

With a noble sword & a nait naked in his honil, a naked sword.

8760 Vp holdand on high as he þat wold stryke :

Turnyt to the tenttes of the torr grekes,

stones.

mayn torches

(fol. 135 6.)

Alrove the

the Greeks with

[blocks in formation]

Book XXI.

under the

arrange it that

fine ointment to

head, and flow

With a lyuely loke, ledis to be-hold:

The same fawchon full fell, þat þe freke bere, 8764 bat had greuit mony grekes, & to ground broght,

Hit was burnisshed full bright & of blade kene;
And in mynd of þat man for manas was holdyn.
The body of þat bold, as buerne vppon lyue, They set the

body of Hector 8768 Was full solemly set in a seate vnder,

tabernacle; and Ymydward the mayne towmbe with maistres

it might seem deuyse.

to be still alive. All the feturs of þat fre, fresshe to be-hold,

Iche lede on to loke, lemys & other 8772 All set for to se, saue the fete one,

In soche apparell full pure, as the prince vsit.
han po maisturs gert make, amyddes his hede,

A hole þurgh his herne-pon hertely by craft; They cause a 8776 There-in put was a pipe, with a prise oyntment drop into the

Of bavme & of balsamom, þat brethede full swete, all over the body
With oper maters mynget, þat most were of to preserve it.

strenght,

Conseruatours by craft, þat cointly were made. 8780 The bavme burghe his brayn all on brod ran,

And the forhed before fresshly within ;
So hit entrid to be Ene, & evyn to his nase,

And so be craft & by course come to his chekes, 8784 Goyng to his gomys and the ground of his tethe, (fol. 136 a.)

þat keppit hom be crafte all in clene vertue.
So the face of þat freike was fresshe to be-hold, Ry this means
With the here on his hede, þat hogely was features of the

hero are kept mekyll,

fresh and life8788 And grew fro the ground, þat gomys might

know,
As a lede vpon lyue ; lefe if ye will !
ffro thethen the lycour belyue launchit doun

evyn,

Thurgh the goters of his gorge, & the grete pype, 8792 To the brest of the buerne and the bare shulders;

the face and

like.

Book XXI.

So also the arms and hands,

legs and feet.

а

They set round the body four lamps of gold, whose fire could never be extinguished.

And past so by proces to his prise armys,
Bret thurgh the bones and the big senowis,

Euer folowand the fell to be fyngur endys.
8796 So hit soght to the sydes & serchit with-in,

And keppit hom full cleane in hor kynd hew, þat as a lede vpon lyue to loke on þai ware.

Den hit sewit furth soberly, & sanke fro aboue, 8800 By the lyndes of the lede, to the leell theghes,

Passond by poris into þe pure legges ;
And so, be corse of the craft, com to his fete.

In whiche fete pere was formyt fresshly another, 8804 ffull of bawme þat was bright, & of brethe noble.

Thus keppit was this corse of the clene prinse,
As a lede vpon lyue a full long tyme.
ben þos maisters gert make, all with mayn

crafte,
8808 ffovre lampis full light, ledis to beholde,

hat gay were & grete, all of gold fyne ;
ffild vp with fyre, þat fynet not to bren;

pat no watur þen wete in world might hom let, 8812 Ne the light make lesse ne the low fade.

When this taburnacle atyrit was tally to end,
Thai closit hit full clanly, all with clene ambur,

Vmbe the borders aboue, þat no buerne entrid, 8816 With a dore þat was derne, all for dere fryndes

ffor to loke on þat lede, when hom lefe þought, Or þat soght hym to se in his sete holl.

Then Priam, the prise kyng, puruait to leng 8820 Mony seruondis full solemne in the same

temple, Of prestes to pray, and pure men of lyffe, With worship to wale goddis, & wakyng on

nightes.

He gafe Renttes full Rife, & myche Ranke godis, 8824 All þo ledis on to lyf, þat longit perto,

Bothe prestes and prise clerkes prudly to fynd.

(fol. 136 1).)

To this temple Priam appoints many priests, and rich endowments.

THE COUNSEL OF AGAMEMNON.

237

Book XXI.

THE COUNSAILL OF AGAMINON AFTER THE DETHE OF

ECTOR.

Agamemnon proposes to his

Hector's death :

When Ector done was to dethe, & his day past,
Achilles woundit full wothely in were of his

lyffe,
8828 All the grete of the grekes gedrit were sone,

By ordinaunce of the Emperoure, þat after hom

sent. Thus he spake for his spede his specials vnto :"Now fryndes, in faith, vs is faire happont, captains that

they should thank 8832 And þroly, me thinke, we thanke shuld oure their gods for

goddes,
bat hase grauntid vs þat grace of þe gome Ector,
To be drepit to dethe thurgh dughty Achilles.

ffor, while the lede was on lyf, & his lymes holl, 8836 We hade hertely no hope here for to spede,

Yonder toun for to take, ne tene hom within,
Ne in this lond, at our lust, lykyng to haue.
ffor he hase kyld of our kynges, to count hom for he had slain

so many of the by nome,

Greeks and their 8840 Prothesselon, Patroculus, & Policene alse;

Myrion the mighty, & the mayn Sedymon ;
Prothenor the pert, & the prinse Xancipun.

Alphenor the fuerse flung he to dethe; 8844 Archillagon the choise choppit to ground;

Domen the doughty, & derf Polexenas;
Isum, also, abill of his dedys.

Polipheten, a prise mon, he put out of lyue ; 8848 Letabion on the laund þere left he for ded;

And mony grete of our grekes he to ground

broght. Syn he be destany is dede, what dem þar vs ellus, And now that he

is dead, Troy and But the Citie to sese, & slyng it to ground; the Trojans will

be easily taken. 8852 All the pepull to pyne put, and dethe at oure (fol. 137 a.)

lust?

allies,

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