And driuen away death with dias and dragges ,
And dryuen awey deeþ . wiþ Dyas and droggesW.20.173: W alone reads drogges, "drugs"; most other manuscripts have dragges, "sweet medicines." Scribes are apt to confuse the two words (e.g. Chaucer, Canterbury Tales Prologue 426).
and dryuen awey deþ · wyþ dyas and dragesHm.20.173: The spelling is unique among B manuscripts. See MED, s. v. dragge n.(2) and drogge n. ·
And dryue away deth · with dias and dragges
& dryuven a-way deathe wyth diapenidionG.21.171: The G scribe clearly did not understand the majority B reading dyas and dragges and he makes use of another technical medical term which he has already encountered, i.e. diapenidion, defined by Kane as a "medical confection of sugar candy." See G.6.125, and George Kane, Piers Plowman Glossary: Will's Visions of Piers Plowman, Do-Well, Do-Better and Do-Best, A Glossary of the English Vocabulary of the A,
B, and C Versions as Presented in the Athlone Editions (London and New York: Continuum, 2005).
And toR.20.148: Beta omits to. More than half a dozen of the P family
manuscripts of C concur with alpha on this reading, but the
rest—and all of the X family—agree with beta's omission. driue awaye
deth with dayesR.20.148: R's dayes occurred as an error in alpha for dyas, witnessed in beta and in Cx. and dragges .R.20.148:
After this line, the R scribe failed to leave a blank line, his usual custom for dividing
verse strophes. No reason is apparent.
& to dryveF.16.174: Alpha is responsible for to dryve. Beta witnesses have dryuen. a-wey deþ / with dayesF.16.174: The lection dayes occurred in alpha for dyas. þo[&] dragges.F.16.174: dragges, "drugs."