Passus quartus de visione vt supra

Cesseth sei[de]Bx.4.1: seide: The past tense in alpha and Hm is shared with AC. þe kynge · I suffre ȝow no lengere
Ȝe shal sauȝtne for-sothe · and serue me bothe
Kisse hir quod þe kynge · conscience I hote
¶ Nay bi criste quod conscience · congeye me for euereBx.4.4: for euere: This is secure for Bx, though A has rather, as does beta4, with F reading rather sone, presumably by contamination or by anticipation of the next line. The three best mss. of the X family of C have are, "sooner", but all others have rather.
But resoun rede me þer-to · rather wil I deye
¶ And I comaunde þe quod þe Kynge · to conscience þanne
Rape þe to ride · and resoun þow fecche
Comaunde hym þat he come · my conseille to here
For he shal reule my rewme · and rede me þe besteBx.4.9: Following this line, O (supported by Cr23C2Y) has the line "Of Mede & of moo oþere . & what man schal hir wedde", adopted from AC but absent from Bx.
And acounte with þe conscience · so me cryst helpe
How þow lernest þe peple · lered and lewedeBx.4.11: lered and lewede: The reading of R (= alpha?) supported by Cx, and by seven A mss. Beta includes the definite article twice, presumably in response to a short b-verse. F has boþe ... & þe.
¶ I am fayne of þat forwarde · seyde þe freke þanne
And ritte riȝte to resoun · and rowneth in his ere
And seide as þe kynge baddeBx.4.14: seide ... badde: F has tolde hym as þe kyng seide. Cx has sayde for both verbs. Ax has Seide ... sente. · and sithen toke his leue
¶ I shal arraye me to ride quod resoun [·] reste þe a whileBx.4.15: L omits punctuation, and its position varies in other mss. W and alpha have it after resoun, MO after ride.
And called catoun his knaue · curteise of speche
And also tomme trewe tonge · telle me no tales
Ne lesyng to lawȝe of · for I loued hem neuere
And sette my sadel vppon suffre · til I se my tyme
And lete warrok itBx.4.20: it: The reference is to the saddle securely fastened with girths. This is clearly the reading of Bx. Burrow (1990), 139-44, calls the text "hopelessly confused", and discusses the possibility of taking vppon in l. 19 as an adverb. Galloway (2006), 381 considers this further. Beta2 and GF smooth by altering it to him, as in AC. wel · with witty wordes gerthes
And hange on hym þe heuy brydel · to holde his hed lowe
For he wil make wehe · tweyeBx.4.22: tweye: The form is supported by LMR; see Adams (2000), 176. er he be there
¶ Thanne conscience vppon his caple · kairethBx.4.23: kaireth: Sound support from LM and alpha against the form carieth in beta2 and G. For the same variation, see Bx.P.29, 2.164, 5.310. forth faste
And resoun with hym ritte · rownynge togideres
Whiche maistries Mede · maketh on þis ertheBx.4.25: erthe: The reversed word-order in alpha is an error; both the alliterative scheme and the order in the revised line in Cx support beta.
¶ One waryn wisdom · and witty his fere
Folwed hemBx.4.27: hem: The attestation of LMO + alpha, with support from AC, guides choice of this reading over CrWHmG hym. faste · hauedBx.4.27: haued: It looks as though Bx lost for þei before haued. The obvious omission is corrected, perhaps partly on the basis of Ax, in all but the two most reliable mss., LR. Note, however, that M, also independent at this stage, expands to for he, probably by conjecture. The line is marked for correction in L. to done
In þe cheker and atBx.4.28: and at: The reading of Bx is uncertain. L's and at has support from R's atte, and LR agreement is usually decisive. However, MGF have and, which could be the archetypal reading, expanded differently by other scribes. Yet Beta2 and CO are supported by Ax with and in (the line is not in C), and also by the same a-verse in Bx.P.93 (and RK.P.91). þeBx.4.28: þe (2): Not in MHmF. Most A mss. have neither instance of þe in the line. Cf. the same a-verse in Bx.P.93 (without either article) and RK.P.91 (where readings vary). chauncerie · to be discharged of þinges
And riden fast for resoun [·] shulde rede hem þe besteBx.4.29: Following the punctuation of CO + alpha. L has nothing and MWHm punctuate after shulde.
For to saue hem for siluer · fro shame and fram harmes
¶ And conscience knewe hem wel · þei loued coueitise
And bad resoun ride faste · and recche of her noither
Þere aren wiles in here wordes · and with Mede þei dwelleth
There as wratthe and wranglyng is · þere wynne þei siluer
¶ Ac þereBx.4.35: þere(1): "where"; beta2 and F have where. is loue and lewte · þei wil nouȝte come þere
Contricio & infelicitas in vijs eorum &c
Þei ne gyueth nouȝte of god · one gose wynge
Non est timor dei ante oculos eorum
For wot god þei wolde do more · for a dozeine chickenes
Or as many capones · or for a seem of otes
Þan for loue of owre lorde · or alle hise leue seyntes
For-þi resounBx.4.42: resoun: Alpha omits, losing the alliteration. lete hem ride · þo riche bi hem-seluen
For conscience knoweth hem nouȝte · ne cryst as I trowe
[¶]Bx.4.44: : Alpha's paraph finds support from the paragraph in Cr. And þanne resoun rode faste · þe riȝte heiȝe gate
As conscience hym kenned · til þei come to þe Kynge
¶ Curteisliche þe kynge þanne · come aȝein resoun
And bitwene hym-self and his sone · sette hym on benche
And wordeden wel wyseli · a gret while togideres
¶ And þanne come pees in-to parlement · and put forth a bille
How wronge aȝeines his wille · had his wyf taken
And how he rauisshed Rose · Reginoldes loue
And Margarete of hir maydenhode · maugre here chekis
Bothe my gees & my grys · his gadelynges feccheth
I dar nouȝte for fere of hymBx.4.54: hym: Only WHm have hem (theym G). There is the same variation in A mss. · fyȝte ne chyde
He borwed of me bayard · heBx.4.55: he (2): Thus beta, against alpha + CrHm and. Most A mss. have the alpha reading, as does the P family of C, but the X family has the beta reading. We follow copy-text. brouȝte hym home neure
Ne no ferthynge þer-fore · for nauȝteBx.4.56: nauȝte: LM + alpha give this strong support for Bx against ought in all other mss. AC also have nouȝt. I couthe plede
He meyneteneth his men · to morther myne hewen
ForstallethBx.4.58: Forstalleth: So beta and Ax; R has He forstalleth, and F & to for-staleþ (sic). Cx begins the line with And. my feyres · and fiȝteth in my chepynge
And breketh vp my bernes doreBx.4.59: bernes dore: So LWHmR, against berne dore in MCrF, and berne dores in GO. AC vary similarly. · and bereth aweye my whete
And taketh me but a taile · for ten quarteres of otesBx.4.60: of otes: Agreement of LR (together with WCO) suggests that this is perhaps the Bx reading, though since Ax and Cx have otes only, this could equally represent Bx.
And ȝet he bet me þer-to · and lyth bi my Mayde
I [am]Bx.4.62: am: LC have nam but all others are supported by AC. (M originally had ham, with h altered to n). The alliteration of the line is on /h/ and vowel, not /n/. Cf. Bx.5.424, 443. nouȝte hardy for hym · vneth to loke
¶ The kynge knewe he seide sothe · for conscience hym tolde
Þat wronge was a wikked luftBx.4.64: luft: "evil person". This unusual nominal use (MED lift adj. 3(b)) provokes confusion and avoidance among the scribes. Cx simplifies to man. · and wrouȝte moche sorweBx.4.64: wrouȝte moche sorwe: Perhaps Cx inherited R's word order, muche sorwe wrouȝte, altering sorwe to wo for the alliteration.
¶ Wronge was afered þanne · and wisdome he souȝte
To make pees with his pens · and profered hym manye
And seide had I loue of my lordeBx.4.67: my lorde: Cr and Alpha omit, losing the alliteration. This heavy a-verse is Ax, but Cx drops þe kynge. þe kynge · litel wolde I recche
Theiȝe pees and his powere · pleyned hymBx.4.68: hym: HmR have hem (G theym). A mss. are split; Cx rewrites as he pleyne(de). The more obvious pl. suggest that powere was understood as "supporters" (so Kane (2005), s.v.), rather than "legal power" (so Alford (1988), 199). eure
¶ Þo wanBx.4.69: wan: So LCR, as well as the parallel a-verse in A (K.4.53); Kane (2005) glosses "profited". M is corrected to wente, the reading of the other B mss. See Adams (2000), 181. F omits this and the next three lines. wisdome · and sire waryn þe witty
For þat wronge had ywrouȝte · so wikked a dede
And warned wronge þo · with suche a wyse tale
Who-so worcheth biBx.4.72: bi: Supported by Ax against the variants by my in MO and my in C. wille · wratthe maketh ofte
I seye it bi þi-selfBx.4.73: þi-self: So LO + alpha. The a-verse means "I say that with reference to you". M is altered to my-self, the reading of CrWHmCG and some A mss., on the basis of the phrase recorded in Bx.4.139, where it means "I give it as my own opinion". · þow shalt it wel fynde
But if Mede it make · þi myschief is vppe
For bothe þi lyf and þi londe · lyth in his grace
¶ Thanne wowed wronge · wisdome ful ȝerne
To make his pees with his pens · handi-dandi payed
Bx.4.78: WHm and R have a paraph.Wisdome and witte þanne [·] wenten togideres
And toke Mede myd hem [·] mercy to winne
¶ Pees put forþ his hed · and his panne blody
Wyth-outen gilte god it wote · gat I þis skaþe
Conscience and þe comune · knowen þe sothe
¶ Ac wisdom and witte · were about faste
To ouercome þe kynge · with catel ȝif þei myȝte
¶ Þe kynge swore bi crist · and bi his crowne bothe
Þat wronge for his werkis · sholde wo þolye
And comaunded a constable · to casten hym in yrens
And late hym nouȝte þis seuene ȝere · seen his feet ones
¶ God wot quod wysdom · þat were nauȝte þe beste
And he amendes mowe make · late meynprise hym haue
And be borwgh for his bale · and biggen hym bote
And so amende þat is mysdo · and euermoreBx.4.92: euermore: The beta reading, supported by AC. þe bettere
¶ Witt acorded þer-with · and seide þe same
BettereBx.4.94: Bettere: The beta reading, supported by AC against alpha's Þat bettere. is þat bote · bale adoun brynge
Þan bale be ybette · & bote neuere þe bettere
¶ And þanne gan Mede to me[k]enBx.4.96: meken: The alpha reading, supported by AC against beta's mengen, which nevertheless makes good sense, "get involved" (MED 3(c)). here · and mercy sheBx.4.96: she: Clear support as Bx, though not in Ax or most C mss. bisought
And profred pees a present · al of pure golde
Haue þis man of me quod she · to amende þi skaþe
For I wil wage for wronge · he wil do so namore
¶ Pitously pees þanne · prayed to þe kynge
To haue mercy on þat man · þat mys-did hym so ofte
For he hath waged me wel · as wisdome hym tauȝte
And I forgyue hym þat gilte · with a goode wille
So þat þe kynge assent · I can seye no bettere
For Mede hath made m[yn]Bx.4.105: myn: The alpha reading, supported by AC against beta's me. amendes · I may namore axe
¶ Nay quod þe Kynge þo · so me crystBx.4.106: cryst: So beta, against alpha's non-alliterating god. In Ax the b-verse is so god ȝiue me blisse (K.4.91); in Cx the line is revised to Nay by crist quod þe kyng for Consiences sake (RK.4.99). helpe
Wronge wendeth nouȝte so awaye · arst wil I wite more
For loupe he so liȝtly · laughen he wolde
And efte þe balder be · to bete myne hewen
But resoun haue reuthe on hym · he shal rest in my stokkes
And þat as longe as he lyueth · but lowenesse hym borwe
¶ Somme men redde Resoun þo · to haue reuthe on þat schrewe
And for to conseille þe Kynge · and conscience after
That Mede moste be meynpernour · resoun þei bisouȝte
¶ Rede me nouȝte quod resoun · no reuthe to haue
Til lordes and ladies · louien alle treuthe
And haten al harlotrye · to heren itBx.4.117: it(1): So LCO and alpha, as well as the X family of C; erased in M, in line with beta2 + G, together with the P family of C. or to mouthen it
Tyl pernelles purfil · be put in here hucche
And childryn cherissyng · be chastyngBx.4.119: chastyng: "chastisement" (MED chastiinge); clearly Bx, with HmF chastised the easier reading though also that of Ax. Cx has chasted. with ȝerdes
And harlotes holynesse · be holden for an hyneBx.4.120: an hyne: lit. "servant", in context something of small consequence. R replaces it with nauȝte, F with vanyte. Beta is supported by Ax but Cx revises. For discussion see Galloway (2006), 405-6; Turville-Petre (2006), 233-4.
Til clerken coueitise be · to clothe þe pore and to fedeBx.4.121: to fede: Despite the scribal tendency to add to with an infinitive, the agreement of LR (+ CO) suggests that this is Bx, with other scribes dropping to from a b-verse that is already heavy. There is no parallel in A, and C is revised to be cloth for þe pore (RK.4.114).
And religious romares · recordare in here cloistres
As seynt Benet hem bad · Bernarde and Fraunceys
And til prechoures prechyng · be preued on hem-seluen
Tyl þe kynges conseille · be þe comune profyte
Tyl bisschopes baiardes · ben beggeres chambres
Here haukes and her houndes · helpe to pore Religious ·
¶ And til seynt Iames be souȝte · þere I shal assigne
That no man go to Galis · but if he go for euere
And alle Rome-renneres · for robberes ofBx.4.130: of: So LMCOR, supported by Ax, revised in C. byȝende
Bere no siluer ouer see · þat signe of kynge sheweþ
Noyther graue ne vngraue · golde noither siluer
Vppon forfeture of þat fee · who-so fynt hymBx.4.133: hym: i.e. "if anyone catches him". Beta2 corrupts to it; A mss. vary between the two pronouns, while C mss., although split between hym and hem, effectively support Bx. at Douere
But ifBx.4.134: if: The agreement of LR and CrWCGO would suggest that this is from Bx, though MHmF without it are paralleled by AC. it be marchaunt or his man · or messagere with lettres
Prouysoure or prest · or penaunt for his synnes
¶ And ȝet quod resoun bi þe Rode · I shal no reuthe haue
While Mede hath þe maistrye · in þis moot halle
Ac I may shewe ensaumples · as I se other-while
I sey it bi my-self quod he · and it so were
That I were kynge with crowne · to kepen a Rewme
Shulde neuere wronge in þis worlde · þat I wite myȝte
Ben vnpunisshed in my powere · for peril of my soule
Ne gete my grace [þorw]Bx.4.143: þorw: Alpha's preposition is supported by AC against beta's for. giftes · so me god saue
Ne for no Mede haue mercy · but mekenesse it makeBx.4.144: make: Alpha (with CrHm) has the past tense. A mss. are similarly split, and C rewrites.
¶ For nullum malum þe man · mette with inpunitum
And badde nullum bonum · be irremuneratum
¶ Late ȝowre confessoure sire Kynge · construe þis vnglosed
And ȝif ȝe worken it in werke · I wedde myne eres
That lawe shal ben a laborere · and lede a-felde donge
And loue shal lede þi londe · as þe lief lyketh
¶ Clerkes þat were confessoures · coupled hem togideres
Alle to construe þis clause · andBx.4.152: and: This has the support of LR and WHmC, though F reads al and MCrGO omit, presumably reacting to its oddity. In both A and C the b-verses are quite different. for þe kynges profit
Ac nouȝte for conforte of þe comune · ne for þe kynges soule
¶ For I seiȝe mede in þe moot halle · on men of lawe wynke
And þei lawghyng lope to hire · and lafte resoun manye
¶ Waryn wisdome · wynked vppon Mede
And seide Madame I am ȝowre man · what-so my mouth ianglethBx.4.157: iangleth: Alpha + WHm have subjunctive, which may be right, but the indicative is not uncommon in such expressions. See Mustanoja (1960), 468, and cf. "what-euere þe boke telleth" (Bx.5.495). The line is not in AC.
I falle in floreines quod þatBx.4.158: þat: So beta, against alpha's þe. Either could be Bx. See KD, p. 143. freke · an faile speche ofte
¶ Alle riȝtful recorded · þat resoun treuthe tolde
And witt acorded þer-with · and comended his wordes
And þe moste peple in þe halle · and manye of þe grete
And leten mekenesse a maistre · and Mede a mansed schrewe
¶ Loue lete of hir liȝte · and lewte ȝitBx.4.163: ȝit: Beta is supported by Cx against wel in Hm and alpha. lasse
And seide it so heiȝe [·] þat al þe halle it herde
Who-so wilneth hir to wyf · for welth of her godis
But he be knowe for a kokewolde · kut of my nose
¶ Mede mourned þo · and made heuy chere
For þe moste comune of þat courte [·] called hire an hore
Ac a sysoure and a sompnoure · sued hir faste
And a schireues clerke · byschrewed al þe route
For ofte haue I quod heBx.4.171: he: F takes the form to be feminine, referring to Mede, and MHm alter to she, but the reference is obviously to the sheriff's clerk. · holpe ȝow atte barre
And ȝit ȝeue ȝe me neuere · þe worthe of a russhe
¶ The kynge called conscience · and afterwardes resoun
And recorded þat resoun [·] had riȝtfullich schewed
And modilichBx.4.175: modilich: In L a corrector has added <w> to read mowd-. vppon Mede · with myȝte þe Kynge lokedBx.4.175: Alpha's b-verse is perhaps a response to the clumsy reading of Bx, as recorded by beta. Cx patches to "many tyme lokede" (RK.4.167).
And gan wax wrothe with lawe · for Mede almoste had shent it
And seide þorw ȝowre lawe as I leue · I lese many chetes
Mede ouer-maistrieth lawe · and moche treuthe letteth
Ac resoun shal rekene with ȝow · ȝif I regne any while
And deme ȝow bi þis day · as ȝe han deserued
Mede shal nouȝte meynprise ȝow · bi þe Marie of heuene
I wil haue leute in lawe · and lete be al ȝowre ianglyng
And as mosteBx.4.183: moste: There seems nothing to choose between beta and alpha's alle except the scribal tendency to exaggerate. There is no parallel line in AC. folke witnesseth welBx.4.183: wel: R's a-verse presumably represents alpha, with F's as alle wyȝes witnesse an effective attempt to improve the alliteration. · wronge shal be demed
¶ Quod conscience to þe kynge · but þe comune wil assent
It is ful hard bi myn hed · here-to to brynge it
Alle ȝowre ligeBx.4.186: lige: In omitting the adjective, R probably represents alpha, with F attempting to improve alliteration, as in l. 183. Beta is supported by AC. leodes · to lede þus euene
¶ By hym þat rauȝte on þe rode · quod resoun to þe kynge
But if I reule þus ȝowre rewme · rende out my guttes
Ȝif ȝe bidden buxomnes · be of myne assente
¶ And I assent [quod]Bx.4.190: quod: Support is strong from alpha + HmGO, together with Ax. M's seith is a correction. On the other hand, the alliterative pattern would support seith as in LCrWC. In C the line is rewritten to alliterate on /w/ (RK.4.183). þe kynge · by seynte Marie my lady
Be my conseille comen [·]Bx.4.191: L misplaces the punctuation after clerkis. of clerkis and of erlis
Ac redili resoun [·] þow shalt nouȝte ride fro me
For as longe as I lyue · lete þe I nelle
¶ I am aredyBx.4.194: aredy: LMOR have this form; Cr has redy (as does Ax); WHmCGF have al redy. quod resoun · to reste with ȝow euere
So conscience be of owreBx.4.195: owre: M's yowre is paralleled in a number of A mss. conseille · I kepe no bettere
And I graunt quod the kynge · goddes forbode [he]Bx.4.196: he: R shares this reading with Ax. Both F (with þou) and beta (with it) miss the reference to Conscience. faile
Als longe as owre lyf lastethBx.4.197: lasteth: There is no particular reason to prefer alpha's subjunctive form. For not very precise parallels, cf. Bx.6.295, 20.211. · lyue we togideres