« AnteriorContinuar »
The scorching flame sore swinged all his Full of great vertues, and for med’cine face,
231 good. And through his armour all his body seard, Whylome, before that cursed dragon got That he could not endure so cruell cace, That happy land, and all with innocent But thought his armes to leave, and hel blood met to unlace.
Defyld those sacred waves, it rightly hot?
The Well of Life, ne yet his8 vertues had Not that great champion of the antique
XXX Whom famous poetes verse so much doth
For unto life the dead it could restore, vaunt,
And guilt of sinfull crimes cleane wash And hath for twelve huge labours high
Those that with sicknesse were infected So many furies and sharpe fits did haunt,
sore When him the poysoned garment did en- It could recure: and aged long decay 265 chaunt,
Renew, as one were borne that very day. When centaures blood and bloody verses Both Silo this, and Jordan, did excell, charmd,
| And th’ English Bath, and eke the German As did this knight twelve thousand i Spau; dolours daunt,
Ne can Cephise, nor Hebrus, match this Whom fyrie steele now burnt, that erst well: him armd;
Into the same the knight back overThat erst him goodly armd, now most of
270 all him harmd.
Now gan the golden Phæbus for to steepe Faynt, wearie, sore, emboyled,” grieved,
His fierie face in billowes of the west, brent, 3
And his faint steedes watred in ocean With heat, toyle, wounds, armes, smart,
deepe, and inward fire,
Whiles from their journall labours they
245 That never man such mischiefes did tor
did rest, ment;
When that infernall monster, having kesto Death better were, death did he oft desire,
His wearie foe into that living well, 276 But death will never come when needes re
Gan high advaunce his broad discoloured
brest quire. Whom so dismayd when that his foe be
Above his wonted pitch, with countenance held, He cast4 to suffer him no more respire,5 250And clapt his yron wings, as victor he did But gan his sturdy sterne about to weld,
dwell. And him so strongly stroke, that to the ground him feld.
Which when his pensive lady saw from farre,
Great woe and sorrow did her soule assay, 10 It fortuned (as fayre it then befell,) As weening that the sad end of the warre, Behynd his backe, unweeting, where he | And gan to highest God entirely pray stood,
That feared chaunce from her to turne Of auncient time there was a springing away: well,
With folded hands, and knees full lowly From which fast trickled forth a silver bent,
All night shee watcht, ne once adowne
would lay I singed.
2 boiled. * planned.
7 was called.
Her dainty limbs in her sad dreriment, For till that stownd could never wight But praying still did wake, and waking did him harme lament.
By subtilty, nor slight, nor might, nor XXXIII
mighty charme. The morrow next gan earely to appeare, That Titan rose to runne his daily race;290
And therewith scourge the buxome* aire
That to his force to yielden it was faine; At last she saw where he upstarted brave
Ne ought his sturdy strokes might stand Out of the well, wherein he drenched lay: As eagle, fresh out of the ocean wave,
| That high trees overthrew, and rocks in Where he hath lefte his plumes all hory | gray,
peeces tore. And deckt himselfe with fethers youthly gay,
XXXVIII Like eyas hauke up mounts unto the The same advauncing high above his skies,
head, His newly-budded pineons to assay, With sharpe intended sting so rude him And marveiles at himselfe stil as he flies:
335 So new this new-borne knight to battell That to the earth him drove, as stricken new did rise.
Ne living wight would have him life beXXXV
hott: Whom when the damned feend so fresh | The mortall sting his angry needle shott did spy
Quite through his shield, and in his No wonder if he wondred at the sight,
I shoulder seasd," And doubted whether his late enimy Where fast it stucke, ne would thereout be It were, or other new supplied knight. 310 gott: He now, to prove his late-renewed might,
The griefe thereof him wondrous sore High brandishing his bright deaw-burning diseasd, blade,
Ne might his rancling paine with patience Upon his crested scalp so sore did smite, be appeasd. That to the scull a yawning wound it made:
XXXIX The deadly dint bis dulled sences all dis
But yet, more mindfull of his honour maid.
315 deare XXXVI
Then of the grievous smart which him did I wote not whether the revenging steele wring, Were hardned with that holy water dew From loathed soile he can him lightly Wherein he fell, or sharper edge did feele, reare,
345 Or his baptized hands now greater grew, | And strove to loose the far infixed sting: Or other secret vertue did ensew; 320 Which when in vaine he tryde with strugEls never could the force of fleshly arme, geling, Ne molten mettall, in his blood embrew;2
- yielding. 1 know.
2 stain itself.
The performed bea
Inflam'd with wrath, his raging blade he
The other foote, fast fixed on his shield, And strooke so strongly, that the knotty
Whenas no strength, nor stroks motes string
380 Of his huge taile he quite a sonder clefte;
To loose, ne yet the warlike pledge to Five joints thereof he hewd, and but the
That nought so wondrous puissaunce Hart cannot thinke what outrage and might sustaine: what cries,
Upon the joint the lucky steele did light, With fowle enfouldred? smoake and flash And made such way that hewd it quite ing fire,
385 hell-bred beast threw forth unto the The paw yett missed not his minisht skies,
might, That all was covered with darknesse dire: But hong still on the shield, as it at first Then, fraught with rancour and en
was pight. 10 gorged yre,
XLIV He casto at once him to avenge for all, For griefe thereof and divelish despight, 11 And, gathering up himselfe out of the mire
From his infernall fournace forth he With his uneven wings, did fiercely fall
threw Upon his sunne-bright shield, and grypt it
Huge flames, that dimmed all the hevens fast withall. 360 light,
Enrold in duskish smoke and brimstone Much was the man encombred with his
As burning Aetna from his boyling stew12 In feare to lose his weapon in his paw,
Doth belch out flames, and rockes in Ne wist" yett how his talaunts to un
peeces broke, fold;
And ragged ribs of mountaines molten Nor harder was from Cerberus greedy jaw new, To plucke a bone, then from his cruell
Enwrapt in coleblacke clowds and filthy claw
smoke, To reave by strength the griped gage
That al the land with stench, and heven away:
with horror choke. Thrise he assayd it from his foote to draw, And thrise in vaine to draw it did assay; It booted nought to thinke to robbe him | The heate whereof, and harmefull pesof his pray.
tilence, So sore him noyd,13 that forst him to re
tire Tho,” when he saw no power might pre
| A little backeward for his best defence, vaile,
To save his body from the scorching His trusty sword he cald to his last aid,
400 Wherewith he fiersly did his foe assaile,
Which he from hellish entrailes did exAnd double blowes about him stoutly laid,
pire. That glauncing fire out of the yron plaid,
It chaunst, (Eternall God that chaunce As sparkles from the andvile use to fly, 375
I did guide) When heavy hammers on the wedge are
As he recoiled backeward, in the mire swaid;
His nigh foreweriedl4 feeble feet did slide, Therewith at last he forst him to unty
And downe he fell, with dread of shame One of his grasping feete, him to defend
sore terrifide. thereby.
14 wearied out.
By this the drouping day-light gan to fade, There grew a goodly tree him faire beside,
And yield his rowme to sad succeeding Loaden with fruit and apples rosy redd,
night, As they in pure vermilion had been dide,
Who with her sable mantle gan to shade Whereof great vertues over all? were
The face of earth, and wayes of living redd;2
440 For happy life to all which thereon fedd,410
And high her burning torch set up in
And And life eke everlasting did befall:
heaven bright. Great God it planted in that blessed
stedd With his Almighty hand, and did it call | When gentle Una saw the second fall The Tree of Life, the crime of our first Of her deare knight, who, weary of long fathers fall.
And faint through losse of blood, moov'd XLVII
not at all, In all the world like was not to be fownd, But lay, as in a dreame of deepe delight, 445 Save in that soile, where all good things Besmeard with pretious balme, whose did grow,
vertuousø might And freely sprong out of the fruitfull Did heale his woundes, and scorching grownd,
heat alay, As incorrupted Nature did them sow, Againe she stricken was with sore affright, Till that dredd dragon all did overthrow. | And for his safetie gan devoutly pray, Another like faire tree eke grew thereby,420 And watch the noyous? night, and wait Whereof whoso did eat, eftsoones did know
for joyous day.
450 Both good and ill: O mournfull memory! That tree through one mans fault hath
LI doen“ us all to dy.
The joyous day gan early to appeare; XLVIII
And fayre Aurora from the deawy bed
Of aged Tithone gan herselfe to reare From that first tree forth flowd, as from With rosy cheekes, for shame as blushing a well,
red: A trickling streame of balme, most so Her golden locks for hast were loosely veraine I shed
455 And dainty deare, which on the ground About her eares, when Una her did marke still fell,
Clymbe to her charet, all with flowers And overflowed all the fertile plaine,
spred, As it had deawed bene with timely raine: From heven high to chace the chearelesse Life and long health that gracious oint
darke; ment gave,
With mery note her lowd salutes the And deadly wounds could heale, and
mounting larke. reare againe
430 The sencelesse corse appointed for the
grave. Into that same he fell, which did from
Then freshly up arose the doughty death him save.
460 All healed of his hurts and woundes wide,
And did himselfe to battaile ready dight;8 XLIX
Whose early foe awaiting him beside For nigh thereto the ever damned beast | To have devourd, so soone as day he spyde, Durst not approch, for he was deadly When now he saw himselfe so freshly made,
465 And al that life preserved did detest; 435 | As if late fight had nought him damniYet he it oft adventur'd to invade.
fyde, I everywhere. ? told. place. caused. place. efficacious. grievous. & make ready.
And madent life pre
He woxe dismaid, and gan his fate to
feare; Nathlesse with wonted rage he him ad
She saw not stirre, off-shaking vaine af
fright She nigher drew, and saw that joyous
end: Then God she praysd, and thankt her
faithfull knight, That had atchievde so great a conquest by his might.
great load to Was payntea
So downe he fell, and forth his life did
breath, That vanisht into smoke and cloudes
swift; So downe he fell, that th' earth him under
neath Did grone, as feeble so great load to
lift; So downe he fell, as an huge rocky clift, Whose false foundacion waves have washt
away, With dreadfull poyse is from the mayne
land rift, And, rolling downe, great Neptune doth
dismay; So downe he fell, and like an heaped
Calme was the day, and through the trem
bling ayre Sweete breathing Zephyrus did softly
play, A gentle spirit, that lightly did delay Hot Titans beames, which then did glyster
fayre: When I, whom sullein care, Through discontent of my long fruitlesse
stay In princes court, and expectation vayne Of idle hopes, which still doe fly away, Like empty shaddowes, did aflict my
brayne, Walkt forth to ease my payne
10 Along the shoare of silver streaming
Themmes; Whose ruttys bancke, the which his river
hemmes, Was paynted all with variable flowers, And all the meades adornd with daintie
gemmes, Fit to decke maydens bowres, And crowne their paramours, Against the brydale day, which is not
long: Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I
end my song. There, in a meadow, by the rivers side, A flocke of nymphes I chaunced to espy, 20 All lovely daughters of the flood thereby, With goodly greenish locks all loose un
tyde, As each had bene a bryde: And each one had a little wicker basket, Made of fine twigs entrayled curiously, 25 In which they gathered flowers to fill their
flasket; And with fine fingers cropt full feateouslylo The tender stalkes on hye.
The knight him selfe even trembled at
his fall, So huge and horrible a masse it seemd; And his deare Lady, that beheld it all, Durst not approch for dread which she misdeemd;
490 But yet at last, whenas the direfull feend grew.
' at once. • pierced o force.