Page images
[blocks in formation]

What cher ? Gud cher ! gud cher, gud cher!

Be mery and glad this gud Newyere ! “Lyft up your hartes and be glad In Crystes byrth," the angell bad; Say eche to oder, yf any be sad, “What cher,” etc.


Now the kyng of hevyn his byrth hath take,
Joy and myrth we owght to make;
Say eche to oder for hys sake,
“What cher,” etc.


Lully, lulley, lulley, lulley !

The fawcon hath born my make 1 away!
He bare hym up, he bare hym down,
He bare hym into an orchard brown.
Lully, lulley, etc.

Yn that orchard there was an halle
That was hangid with purpill and pall.
Lully, lulley, etc.

6 And in that hall there was a bede, Hit was hangid with gold so rede.

Lully, lulley, etc.
And yn that bed there lythe a knyght,
His wowndis bledyng day and nyght.

Lully, lulley, etc.
By that bedis side kneleth a may,
And she wepeth both night and day.
Lully, lulley, etc.

15 And by that beddis side there stondith a

ston, Corpus Christi wretyn thereon. Lully, lulley, etc.


[blocks in formation]

I 2


[blocks in formation]



The lytyll, prety nyghtyngale,

Among the levys grene,
I wold I were with her all nyght !

But yet ye wote ? not whome I mene!
The nyghtyngale sat one a brere

Among the thornys sherp and keyn And comfort me wyth mery cher.

But yet ye wot not whome I mene! She dyd aper 3 all on - hur keynde 5

4 A lady ryght wel be-seyne, Wyth wordys of loff tolde me hur mynde.

But yet ye wot not whome I mene. Hyt dyd me goode upon hur to loke,

Hur corse was closyd all in grene; Away fro me hur herte she toke,

But yete ye wot not whome I mene. “Lady!” I cryed, wyth rufull mone,

“Have mynd of me, that true hath bene! For I loved none but you alone.” But yet ye wot not whome I mene.

mate, sweetheart ? know 3 appear in 5 nature

[blocks in formation]


1 together

2 room





SIR THOMAS MORE (1478-1535) and eche of them lese ' but theyr part : yet I

thinke ther will no printer lightly? be so A DIALOGUE OF SYR THOMAS MORE, hote 3 to put anye Byble in prynte at hys own KNYGHTE

charge, whereof the losse shoulde lye hole in

his owne necke, and than 4 hang upon a doutFROM THE THIRDE BOKE. THE 16.

ful tryal, whether the first copy of hys transCHAPITER

lacion was made before Wickliffes dayes or

since. For if it were made synce, it must be The messenger rehearseth some causes which he

approved before the prynting. hath herd laid by some of the clergie wherfore

"And surelye howe it hathe happed that in the Scripture should not be suffred in Englishe. all this whyle God hath eyther not suffered, or And the author sheweth his mind, that it wer con- not provided that any good verteous man hath venient to have the Byble in Englishe.

hadde the mynde in faithful wise to translate

it, and therupon ether the clergie or, at the “Syr,” quod your frende, "yet for al this, least wise, some one bishop to approve it, thys can I see no cause why the cleargie shoulde

can I nothing tell. But howesoever it be, I kepe the Byble out.of ley mennes handes, have hearde and heare so muche spoken in the that can ? no more but theyr mother tong.' matter, and so muche doute made therin, that “I had went,” 3 quod I, “that I had proved peradventure it would let and withdrawe any you playnely that they kepe it not from them.

one bishop from the admitting therof, without For I have shewed you that they kepe none the assent of the remenant. And whereas from them, but such translacion as be either

many thinges be laid against it : yet is ther in not yet approved for good, or such as be alredi

my mind not one thynge that more putteth reproved for naught, as Wikliffes was and

good men of the clergie in doubte to suffer it, Tindals. For as for other olde ones, that than thys: that they see sometime much of wer before Wickliffes daies, remain lawful, the worse sort more fervent in the calling for and be in some folkes handes had and read.” it, than them whom we find farre better. "Ye saye well," quod he. “But yet as weo- Which maketh them to feare lest such men men saye, ‘somewhat it was alway that the

desyre it for no good, and lest if it wer hadde cat winked whan her eye was oute. Surelye in every mannes hand, there would great peril so is it not for nought that the English Byble arise, and that sedicious people should doe is in so few mens handes, whan so many more harme therwith than good and honest woulde so fayne have it.” “That is very folke should take fruite thereby. Whiche trouth," quod I; "for I thinke that though feare I promise you nothyng feareth me, but the favourers of a secte of heretikes be so fer- that whosoever woulde of theyr malice or vent in the setting furth of their secte, that

folye take harme of that thing that is of it they let 5 not to lay their money together and selle ordeyned to doe al men good, I would make a purse among them, for the printyng of never for the avoyding of their harme, take an evill made, or evil translated booke:

from other the profit, which they might take, which though it happe to be forboden 6 and

and nothing deserve to lese. For elles 6 if burned, yet some be sold ere they be spyed, the abuse of a good thing should cause the

taking away thereof from other that would 1 alleged ? know 3 weened, thought - This word

use it well, Christ should hymself never have is the subject of remain, as well as a part of the been borne, nor brought hys fayth into the phrase in which it stands; the construction is curious but common. 5 hesitate forbidden

1 loseeasily 3 hot, ready then 5 else 95

world, nor God should never have made it WILLIAM TYNDALE (D. 1536) neither, if he should, for the losse of those that would be damned wretches, have kept THE GOSPELL OF S. MATHEW. THE away the occasion of reward from them that

FYFTH CHAPTER would with helpe of his grace endevor them to deserve it." “I am sure," quod your frend, "ye doubte

When he sawe the people, he went up into a not but that I am full and hole of youre mynde

mountaine, and wen he was sett, hys disciples in this matter, that the Byble shoulde be in

cam unto him, and he opened his mouth, and

taught them sayinge: "Blessed are the poure oure Englishe tong. But yet that the clergie is of the contrary, and would not have it so,

in sprete: for thers is the kyngdom of heven. that appeareth well, in that they suffer it not

Blessed are they that mourne: for they shalbe

comforted. Blessed are the meke: for they to be so. And over1 that, I heare in everye place almost where I find any learned man of

shall inheret the erthe. Blessed are they

which hunger and thurst for rightewesnes : for them, their mindes all set theron to kepe the Scripture from us. And they seke out for

they shalbe fylled. Blessed are the mercy,

full: for they shall obteyne mercy. Blessed that parte every rotten reason that they can find, and set them furth solemnely to the

are the pure in hert: for they shall se God.

Blessed are the maynteyners of peace: for shew, though syve of those reasons bee not woorth a figge. For they begyme as farre as

they shalbe called the chyldren of God.

Blessed are they which suffre persecucion for our first father Adam, and shew us that his wyfe and he fell out of paradise with desyre

rightewesnes sake: for thers is the kyngdom of knowledge and cunning. Nowe if thys

of heven. Blessed are ye when men shall

revyle you, and persecute you, and shal woulde serve, it must from the knowledge and studie of Scripture dryve every man, priest

falsly saye all manner of evle sayinges agaynst and other, lest it drive all out of paradise.

you for my sake. Rejoyce and be gladde, Than 2 saye they that God taught his disciples

for greate is youre rewarde in heven. For so many, thynges apart, because the people persecuted they the prophettes which were

before youre dayes. should not heare it. And therefore they woulde the people should not now be suffered

“Ye are the salt of the crthe, but ah! yf the

salte be once unsavery, what can be salted to reade all. Yet they say further that it is hard to translate the Scripiure out of one tong

there-with? it is thence-forthe good for nothinto an other, and specially they say into ours,

ynge, but to be cast out at the dores, and that which they call a tong vulgare and barbarous.

men treade it under fete. Ye arc the light of

the worlde. A cite that is sett on an hill But of all thing specially they say that Scripture is the foode of the soule. And that the

cannot be hyd, nether do men light a candle

and put it urder a busshell, but on a candelcomen people be as infantes that must be fedde but with milke and pappe. And if we

stycke, and it lighteth all those which are in have anye stronger meate, it must be

the housse. Se that youre light so schyne chammed 3 afore by the nurse, and so putte

before men, that they maye se youre good into the babes mouthe. But me-think though

werkes, and gloryfie youre Father, which is

in heven. they make us al infantes, they shall fynde many a shrewde brayn among us, that can

“Ye shall not thynke, that y am come to

disanull the lawe other 'the prophettes: no, y perceive chalke fro chese well ynough, and if they woulde once take 4 us our mcate in our

am not come to dysanull them, but to fulfyll own hand, we be not so evil-tothed 5 but that

them. For truely y say unto you, tyll heven within a while they shall see us cham it our

and ert he perysshe, one jott, or one tytle of self as well as they. For let them call us

the lawe shall not scape, tyll all be fullylled.

“Whosoever breaketh one of these leest yong babes and 6 they wil, yet, by God, they

commaundmentes, and shall teche men so, he shal for al that well fynde in some of us that an olde knave is no chylde.”

shalbe called the leest in the kyngdom of

heven. But whosoever shall observe and 1 besides 2 then 3 masticated 4 deliver 5 ill

teache them, that persone shalbe called greate toothed 6 if

in the kyngdom of heven.


“For I say unto you, except youre righte- the erth, For it is hys fote stole: Nether by wesnes excede the rightewesnes of the scrybes Jerusalem, for it is the cite of the greate kynge: and pharyses, ye cannot entre into the kyng- Nether shalt thou swere by thy heed, because dom of heven.

thou canst not make one heer whyte, or “Ye have herde howe it was sayd unto them blacke: But youre communicacion shalbe, of the olde tyme. Thou shalt not kyll. ye, ye: nay, nay. For whatsoever is more Whosoever shall kyll, shalbe in daunger of then that, commeth of evle. judgement. But I say unto you, whosoever “Ye have herde howe it is sayd, an eye for ys angre with hys brother, shalbe in daunger an eye: a tothe for a tothe. But I say unto of judgement. Whosoever shall say unto his you, that ye withstond 1 not wronge: But yf brother, Racha! shalbe in daunger of a a man geve the a blowe on thy right cheke, counseill. But whosoever shall say unto his turne to hym the othre. And yf eny man wyll brother, Thou fole ! shalbe in daunger of hell sue the at the lawe, and take thi coote from fyre. Therfore when thou offerest thy gyfte the, lett hym have thi clooke also. And att the altre, and there remembrest that thy whosoever wyll compell the to goo a myle, brother hath eny thynge agaynst the: leve goo wyth him twayne. Geve to him that there thyne offrynge before the altre, and go axeth: and from him that wolde borrowe thy waye fyrst and reconcyle thy silff to thy turne not away. brother, and then come and offre thy gyste. “Ye have herde howe it is saide: thou shalt

“Agre with thine adversary at once, whyles love thyne neghbour, and hate thyne enemy. thou arte in the waye with hym, lest thine But y saye unto you, love youre enemies. adversary delivre the to the judge, and the Blesse them that cursse you. Doo good to judge delyvre the to the minister, and then them that hate you, Praye for them which doo thou be cast into preson. I say unto the you wronge, and persecute you, that ye maye verely: thou shalt not come out thence tyll be the chyldren of youre hevenly Father: for thou have payed the utmoost forthynge.? he maketh his sunne to aryse on the evle and

“Ye have herde howe yt was sayde to them on the good, and sendeth his reyne on the of olde tyme, thou shalt not commytt ad- juste and on the onjuste. For if ye shall love voutrie. But I say unto you, that whoso- them, which love you: what rewarde shall ye ever eyeth a wyfe, lustynge after her, hathe have? Doo not the publicans even so ? commytted advoutrie with her alredy in his And if ye be frendly to youre brethren only: hert.

what singuler thynge doo ye? Doo nott the "Wherfore yf thy right eye offende the, · publicans lyke wyse? Ye shall therfore be plucke hym out and caste him from the, perfecte, even as youre hevenly Father is Better hit is for the, that one of thy membres perfecte." perysshe then that thy whole body shuld be caste in to hell. Also yf thy right honde

SIR THOMAS WYATT (1503-1542) offend the, cutt hym of and caste hym from the. Better hit is that one of thy membres perisshe, then that all thy body shulde be


HIMSELF WITH REMEMBRANCE “Hit ys sayd, whosoever put * awaye his THAT ALL WOMEN ARE BY wyfe, let hym geve her a testymonyall of her

NATURE FICKLE divorcement. But I say unto you: whosoever puti awaye hys wyfe (except hit be for

Divers doth use, as I have heard and know, fornicacion) causeth her to breake matrimony,

When that to change their ladies do begin, And who soever maryeth her that is divorsed, breaketh wedļocke.

To mourn, and wail, and never for to lynn; 3

Hoping thereby to 'pease their painful woe. “Agayne ye have herde, howe it was said

And some there be that when it chanceth so to them of olde tyme, thou shalt not forswere thysilfe, but shalt performe thine othe to God.

That women change, and hate where love

hath been, But I saye unto you swere not at all: nether

They call them false, and think with words by heven, for hit ys Goddes seate: nor yet by

to win 1 officer ? farthing 3 adultery "puts

I resist .2

many are accustomed



[blocks in formation]

The rocks do not so cruelly Repulse the waves continually, As she my suit and affection; So that I am past remedy, Whereby my lute and I have done.

[blocks in formation]

WRITTEN TO JOHN POINS My mother's maids, when they did sew and

spin, · They sang sometime a song of the field mouse That, for because her livelihood was but thin, Would needs go seek her townish sister's

house. She thought herself endurèd too much pain; The stormy blasts her cave so sore did souse That when the furrows swimmed with the

rain, She must lie cold and wet in sorry plight; And worse than that, bare meat there did

remain To comfort her when she her house had

dight; Sometime a barly corn; sometime a bean, For which she laboured hard both day and

night In harvest time whilst she might go and glean; And where store I was stroyed 2 with the flood,



[blocks in formation]

1 Then welaway ! for she undone was clean. Then was she fain to take instead of food Sleep, if she might, her hunger to beguile.

1 abundance

2 destroyed

« PreviousContinue »