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GEOFFREY CHAUCER


BALLADE TO TRUTH




lee fro the prees and dwelle with sothfastnesse;
 Suffyce unto thy thing, though it be smal,
 For hord hath hate, and climbing tikelnesse,
 Prees hath envye, and wele blent overal.
 Savour no more than thee bihove shal,
 Reule wel thyself that other folk canst rede,
 And trouthe thee shal delivere, it is no drede.
 Tempest thee noght al croked to redresse
 In trust of hir that turneth as a bal;
 Gret reste stant in litel besinesse.
 Be war therfore to sporne ayeyns an al,
 Stryve not, as doth the crokke with the wal.
 Daunte thyself, that dauntest otheres dede,
 And trouthe thee shal delivere, it is no drede.
 That thee is sent, receyve in buxumnesse;
 The wrastling for this world axeth a fal.
 Her is non hoom, her nis but wildernesse:
 Forth, pilgrim, forth! Forth, beste, out of thy stal!
 Know thy contree, look up, thank God of al;
 Hold the heye wey and lat thy gost thee lede,
 And trouthe thee shal delivere, it is no drede.
 Therfore, thou Vache, leve thyn old wrecchednesse;
 Unto the world leve now to be thral.
 Crye him mercy, that of his hy goodnesse
 Made thee of noght, and in especial
 Draw unto him, and pray in general
 For thee, and eek for other, hevenlich mede;
 And trouthe thee shal delivere, it is no drede.


CHAUCER'S WORDS UNTO ADAM SCRIVEYN


dam scriveyn, if ever it thee bifalle
Boece or Troylus for to wryten newe,
Under thy long lokkes thou most have the scalle,
But after my makyng thow wryte more trewe;
So ofte adaye I mot thy werk renewe,
It to correcte and eke to rubbe and scrape,
And al is thorugh thy negligence and rape.




THE COMPLAINT OF CHAUCER TO HIS PURSE

o yow, my purse, and to noon other wight
Complayne I, for ye be my lady dere.
I am so sory, now that ye been lyght;
For certes but yf ye make me hevy chere,
Me were as leef be layd upon my bere;
For which unto your mercy thus I crye,
Beth hevy ageyn, or elles mot I dye.
Now voucheth sauf this day or hyt be nyght
That I of yow the blisful soun may here
Or see your colour lyk the sonne bryght
That of yelownesse hadde never pere.
Ye be my lyf, ye be myn hertes stere.
Quene of comfort and of good companye,
Beth hevy ageyn, or elles moot I dye.
Now purse that ben to me my lyves lyght
And saveour as doun in this world here,
Out of this toune helpe me thurgh your myght,
Syn that ye wole nat ben my tresorere;
For I am shave as nye as any frere.
But yet I pray unto your curtesye,
Beth hevy agen, or elles moot I dye.
O conquerour of Brutes Albyon,
Which that by lyne and free eleccion
Been verray kyng, this song to yow I sende,
And ye, that mowen alle oure harmes amende,
Have mynde upon my supplicacion.


If any gentle reader would like to contribute to this website they can do so at http://www.umilta.net/pp.html which places funds in the bank account of the Aureo Anello Associazione of which I am President and which maintains websites, restores Florence's 'English' Cemetery and helps integrate Roma families into gadgé society.

Much of this research is based on the1974 Berkeley doctoral dissertation, which went into three editions as a published book, The Pilgrim and the Book: A Study of Dante, Langland and Chaucer, https://isbnsearch.org/isbn/08204209051992, its Dante sections also published in an Italian edition in De strata francigena XX/1, 2012.

 


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