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Then Ire came in with sturt' and strife: His hand was aye upon his knife,

He brandished like a bear: Boasters, braggers, and bargainérs, After him passed in in pairs,

All clad in garb of weir;10
In jacks, and mail, and bonnets of steel,
They were in armour to the heel,

Full froward was their air;
Some upon other with brands beft,"
Some jaggit others to the heft,

With knives that sharp could shear.




Next in the dance followed Envy,
Filled full with feud and felony,

Hid malice and despite;
For privy hatred that traitor trembled;
Him followed many a rogue dissembled

With feigned wordės white:
And flatterers untó men's faces;
And backbiters in secret places

To lie that had delight;
And whisperers of false lesings, 12
Alace! that courts of noble kings

Of them can never be quyte. 13


I that in health was and gladnéss,
Am troubled now with great sicknéss,
And feeble with infirmity;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
Our pleasunce here is all vain glory,

5 This false warld is but transitory, The flesh is bruckle, 2 the Fiend is slee;:

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
The state of man does change and vary,
Now sound, now sick, now blithe, now sary,* 10
Now dancing merry, now like to dee;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
No state on earth stands fast, I find;
As osiers light wave in the wind,
So waveth this warld's vanity;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
Down unto death go all estates,
Prelates, and kings, and potentates,
Baith rich and poor of all degree;
Timor Mortis conturbat me.

20 Death strikes the knichts up n the field, Full armoured, under helm and shield, Victor in every fight is he;

Timor Mortis conturbat me. That strong, unmerciful tyránd5

25 Taks, on the mother's breast sowkand, The babe full of benignity;


Next him in dance came Covetice,

55 Root of all ill, and ground of vice,

That never could be content:
Catiffs, wretches, and usurers,
Misers, hoarders, gatherers,
All with that warlook went:

60 Out of their throats they shot on other Hot, molten gold, me thocht, a futher14

As fire-flaught15 maist fervent;
Aye, as they emptied them of shot,
Fiends filled them new up to the throat,

With gold of all kind prent.16
Nae minstrels played to them nae doubt, 103
For gleemen there were holden out,
By day and eke by nicht;

Timor Mortis conturbat me. 17 Breve of Recto, a writ which in feudal Scotland established a right to succession.

18 In Dunbar's time and for long after, the Highlanders were regarded with a feeling of mingled dread and contempt by the more settled and prosperous people of the South. Cf. the attitude of Baillie Nichol Jarvie in Scott's Rob Roy.

19 An opponent of Wallace, the Scotch patriot. After swearing allegiance to Edward Ist, Makfadyane fled to a cave, where he was surprised and killed. Hence the assertion that he was fetched from a

in the northwest." 20 Scotch, Gaels. 21 Croak. 22 Smothered. 1 Poets.

2 Brittle. • Sorry.

5 Tyrant.

6 Sucking.

105 3 When Dunbar wrote, French fashions were in vogue at the Scottish Court. 4 At once.

6 Empty dwellings. & For the nonce.

7 Cheat.

8 Groang. Disturbance. 10 War.

14 Load. 16 Lightning.

16 Of every impress.


11 Beat.

12 Lieg.

13 Quit.

3 Sly.

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He taks the champion in the stour,'
The captain closed in the tour,
The lady in bour ful of beautie;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
He spares no lord for his puissánce,
No clerk for his intelligence;
His awful stroke may no man flee;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
Masters of magic and astrology,
Of rhetoric, logic or theology,
Are helped by no conclusions slee;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
In medecine the best practicians,
Of leeches, surgeons, and physiciáns,
Themselves from death may not supplie; 8

Timor Mortis conturbat me. I see that Makers, amang the lave, Play here their pageants, then go to grave; Death does not spare their facultie;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
He came most piteously to devour
The noble Chaucer, 10 of Makers' flower,
The Monk of Bury, and Gower, all three;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
The gude Sir Hugh of Eglington,
And eke Heriot, and Wyntown,
He hath ta'en out of this countree;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
He hath restrained (that scorpion dark)
Maister James Afflek and John Clerk
Frae ballad-making and tragedy;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
Holland and Barbour he has bereft;
Alas, he has not with us left
Sir Mungo Lockhart of the Lea!

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
Clerk of Tranent eke he has ta’en,
That made th' adventures of Gawain,
Sir Gilbert Hay ended has he;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
He has blind Harry and Sandy Traill
Slain with his shot of mortal hail,
Which Patrick Johnstoun micht not flee;

Timor Mortis conturbat me.
He has reft11 Merseir his endite,12
That did of luve so lively write,
So short, so quick, of sentence hie;13

Timor Mortis conturbat me.

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WELCOME TO THE SUMMER SUN (From the Prologue to the Æneid,' Bk. XII) Welcome, the lord of licht, and lamp of day, Welcome, fost'rer of tender herbés green, Welcome, quick’ner of blooming blossoms

sheen, Welcome, support of every root and vein, Welcome, comfort of all-kind fruit and grain, 5 Welcome, the birdės bield? upon the brere, 3 Welcome, maister and ruler of the year, Welcome, welfare of farmers at the ploughs, Welcome, repairer of woods, trees, and boughs, Welcome, depainter of the blooming meads, 10 Welcome, the life of everything that spredes, Welcome, the strength of all-kind bestial, Welcome be thy bricht beamés gladding all, Welcome, celestial mirror and aspy,5 Arresting all that practise sluggardy.




7 Storm, stir or tumult of battle. & Defend.

. Among the rest. 10 Among the twenty-four poets celebrated by Dunbar, Chaucer alone remains a living power in literature. Barbour, Gower, Lydgate and Henryson hold a secure and honorable place; while a few others, as Blind Harry and Walter Kennedy, although less known, are still nominally remembered. Some of the remainder are more or less securely established on the right side of oblivion, while others, in Sir T. Browne's phrase, “Subsist under naked nominations, without deserts and noble acts, which are the balsam of our memories. 11 Snatched. 12 Manuscript.

13 High

14 Has run down. 15 Remedy. 16 Prepare.

i The translation of the Æneid is generally acknowl. edged to be Douglas's most important work. It is noteworthy as the earliest attempt to reproduce a great classical poem in English verse. The prologues prefaced to tbe various books, contain some vivid and forcible descriptions of Nature, and are intrinsically the most interesting parts of the work, 2 Nest.

3 Briar. *i. e. the one who gives success to the farmer's labors. the source of his welfare.

> Sentinel.

Sir David Lyndsay




(From The Monarchy,' 1553)
Gentle redár, have at me na despite,
Thinking that I presumptuously pretend,
In vulgar tongue sa high mattere to write: 540
But, where I miss, I pray thee to amend,
By the unlearned I would the cause were kend,
of our maist miserable travail and tormént,
And how in earth na place is permanent.

The prophet David, King of Israel,

664 Compiled the pleasant psalms of the Psaltair In his ain proper tongue, as I hear tell, And Solomon, who was his son and heir, Did mak his buke intill the tongue vulgair, Why should not their saying be to us shown 669 In our language, I would the cause were known. Let doctors write their curious questióuns, And arguments, sown full of sophistrie; Their logic, and their high opinióuns, And their dark judgments of astronomie, Their medicine, and their philosophie; Let poets show their glorious ingyne, o As ever they please, in Greek, or in Latine: But let us have the bookės necessare To commonweal and our salvatióun, Justly translated in our tongue vulgaire: And so I mak the supplicatioun, O gentle redar, have na indignatióun, Thinking I meddle with so high mattair: Now to my purpose forward will I fare.




Howbeit that divers devoted cunning clerks,
In Latin tongue have written sundry books: 546
Our unlearned know little of their werks;
Mair than they do the raving of the rooks:
Wherefore to colliers, carters, and to cooks,
To Jock and Tom, my rime shall be directet,
By cunning men howbeit it will be lacket.


James Wedderburn

c. 1500-1564-5

Though every common may not be a clerk,
And have no lore except their tongue maternal,
Why should of God the marvellous heavenly

Be hid from them, I think it not fraternal: 555
The Father of heaven, who was and is eternal,
To Moses gave the law on Mount Sináy
Neither in Greek nor Latin, as I hear say.


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He writ the law in tables hard of stone,
In their ain vulgar language of Hebrew;
That all the bairns of Israel, every one,
Micht know the law, and so the same ensue.
But had he writ in Latin or in Grew,5
It had to them been but a savourless jest,
Ye may well wist God wrought all for the best.



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(Psalm XXVII, 9)
Ah! my Lord, leave me not,
Leave me not, leave me not,
Ah! my Lord, leave me not,

Thus mine alone:
With ane burden on my back
I may not bear, I am so weak,
Lord, this burden from me tak,

Ór else I am gone.
With sins I am laden sair,
Leave me not, leave me not,
With sins I am laden sair,

Leave me not alone:
I pray thee, Lord, therefore,
Keep not my sins in store;
Loose me, or I am forlore,2

And hear thou my moan.
With Thy hands Thou hast me wrought,
Leave me not, leave me not,
With Thy hands Thou hast me wrought,

Leave me not alone:
I was sold and Thou me bought,
With Thy blood Thou hast me coft;3
Now am I hither sought

To Thee, Lord, alone.




Writ not in Caldie language, nor in Grew;
Nor yet writ in the language Saracene;
Nor in the natural & language of Hebrew; 575
But in the Roman tongue, as may be seen,
Whilk was their proper language, as I ween,
When Romans ranked dominators, indeed,
The ornate Latin was their proper leid.' ... 579

· The Monarchy, or Ane Dialog betwir Experience and ane Courteour, Lyndsay's last poem, is a lengthy survey of the history of the world, with a prophecy of the millenium, when all things shall be made new.

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? Lat. rulgaris, popular. * Learned writers.

Dispraised. Greek.

6 Said. Lat. ornatus, means here proper or fitting,

• Language.

* Original.

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‘Busk ye, bowne ye, my merry men all,

For John shall go with me;
For I'll go seek yond wight yeomen

In greenwood where they be."
They cast on their gown of green,

A shoothing gone are they, Until they came to the merry greenwood,

Where they had gladdest be; There were they ware of a wight yeoman,

His body leaned to a tree.




All they that laden be,
Thou bidst them come to Thee,
Then shall they saved be,

Through Thy mercy alone.
Thou savest all the penitent,
And leav'st them not, and leav'st them not.
Thou savest all the penitent,

And leav'st them not alone.
All that will their sins repent,
None of them shall be shent,
Suppose Thy bow be ready bent,

Of them Thou killest none.
Faith, hope, and charity,
Leave me not, leave me not,
Faith, hope, and charity,

Leave me not alone.
I pray Thee, Lord, grant me,

45 These godly giftės three, Then shall I saved be,

Doubt have I none.



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A sword and a dagger he wore by his side,

Had been many a man's bane, And he was clad in his capull-hide,

Top, and tail, and mane. "Stand you still, master," quoth Little John, 35

“ Under this trusty tree, And I will go to yonder wight yeoman,

To know his meaning trulý." “Ah, John, by me thou sett'st no store,

And that's a farley8 thing; How oft send I my men before,

And tarry myself behind?
"It is no cunning a knave to ken,

An' a man but hear him speak;
An it were not for bursting of my bow,

John, I would thy head break."
But often words they breeden bale, 1

That parted Robin and John; John is gone to Barnesdale,

The gates'' he knows each one. And when he came to Barnesdale,

Great heaviness there he had; He found two of his fellowes

Were slain both in a slade, 12

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When shawst be sheen, and shradds2 full fair,

And leaves both large and long,
It is merry, walking in the fair forest,

To hear the small birds' song.



And Scarlett afoot a-flying was,

Over stocks and stone, For the sheriff with seven score men

Fast after him is gone.

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The witwall: sang, and would not cease,

Sitting upon the spray,
So loud, he wakened Robin Hood,

In the greenwood where he lay.
"Now by my fay," said jolly Robin,

A sweven. I had this night,
I dreamt me of two wight yeomen,

That fast with me gan fight. “Me thought they did me beat and bind,

And took my bow me fro;
If I be Robin alive in this land,

I'll be wrocken) on both them two." “Sweavens are swift, master," quoth John,

"As the wind that blows o'er a hill:
For if it be never so loud this night,
Tomorrow it may be still."

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6 Glory. 1 Groves.

2 Coppices. ? The great spotted woodpecker. * Dream.

5 Avenged.

11 Paths. 13 Prepared.

14 Remedy,

If. 12 Valley.


This shot it was but loosely shot,

The arrow flew in vain, And it met one of the sheriff's men;

Good William of Trent was slain.

“Lead on, good fellow," said Sir Guy,

"Lead on, I do bid thee:" “Nay, by my faith," quoth Robin Hood,

The leader thou shalt be."

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The first good shot that Robin led,

Did not shoot an inch the prick fro; Guy was an archer good enough,

But he could ne'er shootė so.
The second shot Sir Guy shot,

He shot within the garland;21
But Robin Hood shot it better than he,
For he clove the good prick-wand.

130 “God's blessing on thy heart!” says Guy,

“Good fellow, thy shooting is good; For an thy heart be as good as thy hands,

Thou were better than Robin Hood. "Tell me thy name, good fellow," quoth Guy, “Under the leaves of lyne:''

136 "Nay, by my faith," quoth good Robín,

“Till thou have told me thine." “I dwell by dale and down," quoth Guy,

“And I have done many a curst turn; And he that calls me by my right name,

Calls me Guy of good Gisborne.” “My dwelling is in the wood,” says Robin;

"By thee I set right nought; My name is Robin Hood of Barnesdale, 145

A fellow thou hast long sought.”
He that had neither been of kith nor kin

Might have seen a full fair sight,
To see how together these yeomen went,

With blades both brown and bright.
To have seen how these yeomen together

fought Two hours of a summer's day; It was neither Guy nor Robin Hood

That fettledthem to fly away.
Robin was reckless of a root,

And stumbled at that tide, 23
And Guy was quick and nimble withal,

And hit him o'er the left side.
“Ah, dear Lady!” said Robin Hood,

"Thou art both mother and may! 24 I think it was never man's destiny

To die before his day."
Robin thought on Our Lady dear,

And soon leapt up again,
And thus he came with an awkward 25 stroke; 165

Good Sir Guy he has slain.
He took Sir Guy's head by the hair,

And stuck it on his bow's end:
“Thou hast been traitor all thy life,

Which thing must have an end."
21 The ring around the centre of the target.
22 Made ready.
24 Maid, virgin.



Let us leave talking of Little John,

For he is bound fast to a tree,
And talk of Guy and Robin Hood

In the greenwood where they be.
How these two yeomen together they met,

Under the leaves of lime,
To see what merchandise they made

Even at that same time. “Good morrow, good fellow," quoth Sir Guy; 95

"Good morrow, good fellow,” quoth he; “Methinks by this bow thou bear'st in thy hand

A good archer thou seems to be." "I am wilful of my way," quoth Sir Guy,

“And of my morning tide:"15 “I'll lead thee through the wood," quoth Robin,

“Good fellow, I'll be thy guide.” “I seek an outlaw," quoth Sir Guy,

“Men call him Robin Hood; I had rather meet with him


a day Than forty pound of gold.” "If you two met, it would be seen whether were

better Afore ye did part away; Let us some other pastime find,

Good fellow, I thee pray. "Let us some other masteries 18 make,

And we will walk in the woods even; We may chance meet with Robin Hood

At some unset steven.''17 They cut them down the summer shroggs18 115

Which grew both under a brere, 19 And set them three score rods in twain,

To shoot the pricks20 full neare.






25 Unexpected

15 Time. 18 Trials of skill. 17 Unappointed time. * Stunted shrubs.

19 Briar. 38 A wand or white mark used as the bull's eye of the target.

23 Time.

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