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And if it hap a man be in disease,
She doth1 her business and her full pain2
With all her might him to comfort and please,
If fro bis disease him she might restrain :
In word ne deed, I wis, she woll not faine ;
With all her might she doth her business
To bringen him out of his heaviness.

Lo, here what gentleness these women have,
If we could know it for our rudéness !
How busye they be us to keep and save
Both in helet and also in sickness,
And alway right sorry for our distress!
In every manére thus shew they ruth,5
That in them is all goodness and all truth.

WHEN that Phæbus his chair? of gold so high
Had whirled up the starry sky aloft,
And in the Bulls was entered certainly ;
When showers sweet of rain descended soft,
Causing the ground, felétimis and oft,
Up for to give many an unwholesome air,
And every plainé was yclothed fair

With newé green, and maketh10 smallé flowers
To springen, here and there, in field and mead;
So very good and wholesome bell the showers,
That they renewen that12 was old and dead
In winter time; and out of every seed
Springeth the herbé, so that every wight13
Of this season waxeth right glad and light.

1 Exerts.

2 Endeavour. : Our rudeness being an obstacle to our knowing it. For the etymology and applica tions of for, see Tookc and thc dictionaries.

« Health; the cognates are hail, hale, whole.

6 Compassion; from ruc, (Ang. Sax. lIreoucan, to lament); the same analogy exists in true, truth. Kue, the herb, said to be from Pu519 (rucin), to deliver; “quia, ut Dicscorides docet, valetudinem conservat."--Vossius.)

6 The Sun-god. The names of the Greek deities are said to be of uncertain etymology. Phæbus is traced both to Qaw (phao), I shine; and Poliw (phobco), I terrify. The name Apollo is said to be from a chlui (apollumi), I destroy.

? This is a frequent image in the elder poetry; so Ben Johnson, in the Hymn to Cyntthia;

" Seated in thy silver chair,

State in wonted manner keep."-(Cynthia's Revels.) . The second sign of the zodiac.

9 Many. (German t'icl.) 19 There seems a confusion of nominatives here between Phæbus, shorters, and plain. 11 Be was forinerly used indicatively; we employ it now only in the subjunctive or con ditional sense. 12 Supply the relative echich.

A person; from Ang. Sax. vitan, to know; hence wight is a being that knows and feels. It is an appellation of warriors in Scottish poetry," Wallace wight." It is often used as an cpithet of contempt or ridicule.



And so I, gladé of the season sweet
Was happid' thus ; upon a certain night
As I lay in my bed, sleep full unmeet
Was unto me; but why that I ne might
Rest I ne wist, for there n' 'asa earthly wight,
As I suppose, had more of hertís ease
Than I, for I n' 'ads sickness nor disease.

Wherefore I marvell’d greatly of myself
That I so long withouten sleepé lay,
And up I rose three hours after twelve,
About the springingt of the gladsome day.
And on I put my gear and mine array,
And to a pleasant grove I 'gan to pass,
Long or the bright sunné uprisen was ;

In which were oakés great, straight as a line,
Under the which the grass so fresh of hue
Was newly sprung, and an eight foot or nine
Every tree welle from his fellow grew
With branches broad, laden with leavés new,
That springen out against the sonné sheen,
Some very red, and some a light glad green,

Which, as me thought, was a right pleasant sight;
And eke the burdís songs for to hear,
Would have rejoiced any earthly wight,
And I, that couth not yet in no manère
Hearen the nightingale of all the year,
Full busily hearkened with heart and ear
If I her voice perceive could any where. 8

And at the last a path of little brede
I found, that greatly had not used be,
For it forgrowén10 was with grass and weed,
That well unneathisll a wight might it see.
Thought I, “ this path some whider goth, pardé !" 12

I Situatod by fortune.

2 Was not.

3 Had not 4 The dawn is called the “ day-spring." Job xxxviii. 12.; Luke i. 78.

$ The indefinite article is often in plural expressions used in a collective sense; "a thousand things," "a few names," "a many thousand warlike French."-Shakesp. ; and the collective word seems to have a tendency to assume the singular shape; as, ten fish, thirty horec, eight foot.

* At a convenient distance; well is often used as an adverb of extent or degree : good ts taken in the same sense: bien is user similarly in French.

During; at any time selected from all the year. Cognates ; Gothic, af; Lat. ab : Greek, asso, ap'. # This is beautiful and natural.

9 Breadth. 10 For, (prefix, Gerinan, r07): for, as a prefix, is sometimes privative, sometimes intendive; it is often uscil in the latter sense in Scotch, " forfcuchten."-Burns.

And the heavy ploughman snores

All with weary tilsk fordone."--Shakesp). Midsummer's Night's Dream. 1 Bencath; the Scotch form is aneath.

12 Fr. par-dieu.

And so I followed it till it me brought
To a right pleasant herbir? well ywrought,

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Within, in feres so well and cunningly,
That every branch and leaf grew by measure
Plain as a board, of an height by and by ;'
I seelo never a thing, I you ensure,
So well ydonc; for he that took the curell
It for to make, I trow, 12 did all his pain, 13
To make it pass all tho14 that men have seen. 15

And eke this house hath of entreès
As many as leaves ben 16 on trees
In summer, when that they ben green;
And on the roof yet men may sene17
A thousand bolis, 18 and well mo,
To letten the sound out ygo.
And by day, in every tide, 19
Ben all the doorés open wide;

1 Arbour.

2 This double relative is still used in the vulgar dialect. 3 Plural of turf.

This is marked with the minuteness of Shakespeare's eye. $ Went round; surrounded: yede, part. yode, to go.

& Applied to the great maple tree, though there is little resemblance between it and the oriental sycamore.

i Eglantine. "Skinner and Junius both say rosa sylvestris, (wild rose.) Warton asserts the eglantine and the sweet-briar to be the same plant; and that by twisted eglantine," Milton therefore meant the honey-suckle."- Richardson.

8 Together ; in company : fere signifies also a companion, an associate, a lorer. “Here's my hand, my trusty fere."- Burns. “Fresh feres will dry the bright blue eyes." -Byron. Chaucer uses the word in both these senses. The alleged etymology in Ang. Sax, is faran, to go. It might seem to have some connection with friend.

9 All along. 10 Have seen. This expression is retained in the vulgar dialect. 11 Care, (Lat. cura.) 22 (From Ang. Sax. treowa, faithful); hence true, truth. 13 Exerted his endeavour. 14 Surpass all those. Tho is also an adverb meaning then.

15 The sequel of this description is very beautiful. The whole poem is full of delightful imagery and pictures. It seems to have suggested Edwin's vision in Beattie's " Minstrel,"

10 Are; plur. of be. “With every thing that pretty bin."--Shakesp. Cymbeline, Act ii. Sc. 3.

17 See infinitive. 18 Holes; apertures; retained in this sense in Scotch. Bole is also the trunk of a tree: Armenian bolc; a species of earth.

19 A specific time, as noontide; eventide; (German zeit): applied to the periods of the ocenn's ebb and flow. "Alike to him was time or tide," -Scott; f. e. duration or specific


“ Thou art the ruins of the noblest man
That ever lived in the tides of time."

Shakesp. Jul. Crs. Act lii. Sc. 2. i. c. epochs of duration. The common reading is "tide of times." Tidy, betide, are de rivatives.


And by night each one is unshette ;1
Ne porter is there none to let,2
Ne manere tidings in to pace;8
Ne never rest is in that place,
That it n' is filled full of tidings,
Either loud, or of whisperings.
And, ever, all the House's angles
Is full of rowningst and of jangles ;
Of wars, of peace, of marriages,
Of rests, of labour, of viages,
Of abode, of death, of life,
Of love, of hate, accord, of strife;
Of loss, of lore, and of winnings,
Of health, of sickness, or lesings;7
Of fairé weather, and tempestis,
Of qualm, of folké, and of beastis;
Of divers transmutations
Of éstates and of regions ;
Of trust, of dread, of jealousy,
Of wit, of winning, of follù ;
Of plenty, and of great famine;
Of cheap, of dearth, and of ruine;
Of good, or of misgovernment,
Of fire, and divers accident.

But, sith 'tis so there is a trespass done,
Unto Mercy let yield the trespassour,
It is her office to redress it soon;
For Trespass is to Mercy a mirròur.
And like as the sweet hath the price by sour,
So by Trespass, Mercy hath all her might:
Without Trespass, Mercy hath lack of light.

What should Physic do but if Sickness were ?
What needeth salve but iflo there were a sore ?

What needeth drink where thirst hath no power ? 1 Unshut.

? Hinder. (Ang. Sax. letlan); let, to permit, (Ang. Sax. laetan); let, applied to leasing of property, is used in the same sense as the Latin, locare.

3 Go, Roron, roune, or round, to whisper: alleged etymology, “to mutter like a Runic en. chantcr."-Jamieson.

6 Journeys. (Fr. voyage. Lat. via.) • Boding; prognostication ; "Nay, such abodes ben not worth an haw." -Chauc. Troilus and Cressida. (Ang. Sax. bodian.)

1 Lics. Lose was anciently written lese : "For lesing of richesse and liberty."_Chauc. Monk's Tale ; lose is substantially the same word with loose. Lesing is also lying; retained in the law phrase "leasing-making."

8 Cheapness; plenty. (Ang. Sax. cyppan, to traffic; German, kaufen :)-coft, bought, (Scotch.) “Pormerly good-chcap, and bad-chcap, i. c. well or ill bought, were the modes of expression. The modern fashion uses the word only for good-cheap."--Tooke. Cheap, a market, as Eastchcap, Cheapside ;-to chaffer, to bargain ;-chapman, a purchaser. Compare the French phrase, à bon marché.

* This passige is an example of Chaucer's nervous simplicity of style; of the facility with which his imagination crowds objects into his pictures; and of his ustal unskilfulness in grouping and arrangement. The original of the " House of Farne" is Ovid, Metamph. xii. 39. See also Pope's "Temple of Famc," souudcd on Chaucer's poem. 10 Unless or without.

What should Mercy do, but? Trespass go afore ?
ButTrespass, Mercy woll be little store ;3
Without Trespass near execution, 3
May Mercy have ne chief perfection.


(Died 1402.) Gower was a gentleman of property, a contemporary of Chaucer, but several years his junior. The “grave and sententious turn” of his poetry earned for him, from Chaucer and others, the appellation of the Moral Gower. His " capital work” is in three parts ; Speculum Meditantis, (in French Thyme :) Vox Clamantis, (in Latin Elegiacs) ; and Confessio Amantis, (in English, Octo-syllabics.) He was a man of varied learning ; but far inferior to Chaucer in the natural qualities of a true poet, “ By a cultivation of his native language,” says Warton," he laboured to reform its irregularities, and to establish an English style. In these respects he resembled his friend and contemporary Chaucer ; but he participated no considerable portion of Chaucer's spirit, imagination, and elegance. His language is tolerably per spicuous, and his versification often harmonious.” The following extract from the Confessio Amantis, Warton terms “no bad specimen of Gower's most poetical manner.” It appears, he says, to be an imitation of Chaucers Flower and Leaf, vid. supra, p. 14.

WHEN come was the month of May,
She would walk upon a day,
And that was ere the sun arist,
Of women but a few it wist.
And forth she went privily
Unto a park was fast by,
All softe walkends on the grass,
Till she came there the land was
Through which ran a great rivère.
It thought her fair, and said, “Here
" Will I abide, under the shaw ;"9
And bade her women to withdraw.
And there she stood alone still,
To think what was in her will.
She saw the sweet flowers spring ;

She hcard (the) glad fowls sing;
1 Unless or without. 2 In liitle estimation. 3 About to be punished.
• Only a few of her women know.


5 Walking. o Supplc, uchcre : the omission of the relative has been noticed above.

It appeared to her. Sec notc 15, p. 6. & Supple slc. but the nominative is understood in the preceding her. • Shade, (Ang. Sax. Scua : Grock oxid, skia.)

* Whither ridest thou under this greon shaw."-Chaucer. This form of the word is familiar in Scotch.

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