fol. 68r (cont.)I
Passus xvjussextus decimus .
NOw fayre falle ȝow quod I þoo  for ȝoure fayre schewyng
For haukyns loue þe actijf man  euere I schal ȝow louye
Ac ȝit I am in a weer  what charite is to mene
It is a ful tried tree quod he  trulich to telle
Mercy is þe moore þerof  þe myddel stokke is ruþe
Þe leues been lele wordis  þe lawe of holy chirche
Þe blosmes been buxum speche  & benynge lokyng
Pacience hatte þe pure tree  & pure symple of herte
And so þoruȝ god & good men  groweþ þe fruyt charite
I wolde trauayle quod I . þis tree to see  twenty hundrid myle
And to haue my fille of þat fruyt  forsake al oþer saule
Lord quod I if any wyȝt wite  whider out it groweþ
It groweþ in a gardeyn quod he  þat god made hym-selue
Amyddis mannes body  þe moore is of þat stokke
Herte hatte þe herber  þat it Inne groweþ
And liberum arbitrium  haþ þe loond to ferme
Vndir peers þe plowman  to piken it and weden it
PeersO.16.18: A decorative pattern of red and black vertical and horizontal lines, five line spaces in length, is appended to the descender of the <P> in Peers. þe plowman quod I þoo  & al for pure Ioye
fol. 68vI
Þat I herde nempne his name  anoon I swownede after
And lay longe in a loue-dreem  & at þe last me þouȝte
Þat peers þe plowman  al þe place me schewede
And bade me toten on þe tree  on toppe & on rote
Wiþ þre piles was it vndir-piȝt  I parceyuede it soone
Peers quod I . I preye þee  why stonden þeise piles heer
For wyndes . wilt þou wite quod he  to witen it fram fallyng
Cum ceciderit iustus  non collidetur quia dominus supponit manum suam
And in blowynge tyme abite þe flowris  but if þeise piles helpe
Þe werld is a wykkid wijnd  to hem þat willen truþe
Coueytise comeþ of þat wijnd  & crepeþ among þe leues
And forfretiþ nyȝ þe fruyt  þoruȝ many fayre siȝtis
Þanne wiþ þe first pile I pulle hym doun  þat is potencia dei patris
Þe flesch is a felle wijnd  & in flouryng tyme
Þoruȝ likyng ofO.16.33: OC2 alone have of; all other beta witnesses have and. lustis  so lowde he gynneþ blowe
Þat it norischeþ nyce siȝtes  & sum-tyme wordis
And wickede werkis þerof  wormes of synne
And forbiteþ þe blosmes  riȝt to þe bare leues
Þanne sette I to . þe secounde pile  sapiencia dei patris
Þat is þe passioun & þe power  of oure prynce iesus
Þoruȝ preyeris & penaunce  & goddis passioun in mynde
I saue it til I see it ripe  & sumdel yfruytid
And þanne fondiþ þe feend  my fruyt to distruye
Wiþ alle þe wyles þat he can  & waggedeO.16.42: OC2C alone have the preterite form. þe rote
And casteþ vp to þe croppe  vnkynde neyȝboris
Bacbiters breke-cheste  brawlers & chideris
And leiþ a ledder þerto  of lesyngys arn þe ronges
And feccheþ awey my flouris sum-tyme  afore boþe myne yen
Ac liberum arbitrium  letteþ hym sum tyme
Þat is lutenaunt to loken it wel  bi leue of my-selue
videatis qui peccat in spiritum sanctum  nonnumquam remittetur & cetera hoc est idem qui peccat per liberum arbitrium non repugnatO.16.49: This line begins in the right margin of l. 48, breaks after in, then wraps around to occupy the next full line space.
Ac whanne þe feend & þe flesch  forþ wiþ þe werld
Manacen bihynde me  my fruyt for to fecche
Þanne liberum arbitrium  laccheþ þe first plante
And palleþ adoun þe pouke  purilicheO.16.53: OC2 alone have the form puriliche; all other beta witnesses have pureliche. þoruȝ grace
And help of þe holy goost  & þus haue I þe maystrie
Now fayre falle ȝow peers quod I  so fayre ȝe discryuen
Þe power of þeise postes  & her propre myȝte
And I haue þouȝtes a þreue  of þeise þre piles
In what wode
fol. 69rI
IO.16.58: This capital is decorated with an elaborate spray in black and red, four lines in height.n what wode þei waxen  & where þat þei growedenO.16.58: O alone has the form groweden; most B manuscripts have growed.
For al yliche been þei longeO.16.59: OC2 alone have this form of the a-verse; most B manuscripts have "For alle are þei aliche longe."  non lasse þan oþer
And to my mynde as me þinkeþ  on oo moore þei growenO.16.60: GYOC2 alone have a present-tense form.
And of oo gretnesse & grene  of ooO.16.61: OC2 alone include the second occurrence of oo. greyn þei semen
Þat is soþ quod peers  so it myȝteO.16.62: GOC2 alone have myȝte in place of may. bifalle
I schal telle þee as tyte  what þis tree hatte
Þe ground þere it groweþ goodnesse it hiȝte
And I haue told þee . what hiȝte þe tree  þe trinite it meneþ
And egrelich he lokede on me  & þerfore I sparede 
To axen hym any more þerof  & bade hym ful fayre 
To discryue þe fruyt  þat so fayre hangeþ
Heer now bi-neþe quod he þoo  if I nede hadde
Matrimoyne I may nyme  a moyst fruyt wiþ-alle
ÞatO.16.71: GYOC2 alone have Þat in place of Thanne. contynence is neer þe crop  as aO.16.71: OC2 alone include a. calewey bastard
Þanne bereþ þe crop kynde fruyt  & clennest of alle
Maydenhed aungelis peres  & rapestO.16.73: YOC2 alone have rapest in place of raþest. woldeO.16.73: OC2 alone have wolde in place of wole. be ripe
And swete wiþ-outen swellyng  sour worþ it neuere
I preyede peers to pulle adoun  an appel & he wolde
And suffre me to assaye  what sauour it hadde
And peers caste to þe crop  & þanne comsede it to crye
And waggede wydewehod  & it wepte after
And whanne it mouede matrimoyne  it made a foule noyce
Þat I hadde ruþe whanne peers roggede  it gradde so rufulliche
For euere as þei droppedenO.16.81: O alone has the form droppeden in place of dropped. adoun  þe deuel was redy
And gaderede hem alle to-gyderes  boþe grete & smale
Adam and eueO.16.83: GYOC2 alone have eue in place of Abraham.  and ysaacO.16.83: OC2 alone have ysaac in place of Ysaye. þe prophete
Sampson & samuel  & seynt Ion þe baptist
Bar hem forþ boldeli  no-body hem lettede
And made of holyO.16.86: OC2 alone lack men before his. his hoord  in lymbo inferni
Þere is derkenesse & drede  & þe deuel mayster
And peers for pure tene  þat oo pile he lauȝte
And hitte after hym  happe how heO.16.89: CR23OC2 alone have he; most B manuscripts have it. myȝte
Filius bi þe fadir wille  & freenesse of spiritus sancti
To go robbe þat ragman  & reue þe fruyt from hym
And þanne spake spiritus sanctus  in gabrieles mouþe
To a mayden þat hiȝte marie  a meke þing wiþ-al
Þat oon iesus a iustises sone  muste iouke in hir chaumbre
Til plenitudo temporis  fulli comen were
Þat peers fruyt flourede  & fel to be ripe
Annis quingentis decies rursumque ducentis
vnus defuerat cum deus ortus eratO.16.98: A red parasign at the left, two lines in height and with a trailing descender, connects the preceding two lines, which appear in the bottom margin.O.16.97: Kane and Donaldson (224) exclude ll. 97-98, which occur only in OC2, on the grounds that they are scribal.
fol. 69vI
And þanne schalO.16.99: COC2 alone have schal in place of sholde.iesus iuste þerfore  bi iugement of armes
Wheþer schulde fonge þe fruyt  þe feend or hym-selue
Þe mayden myldeliche þoo  þe massager grauntede
And seyde heendeliche to hym  lo me his hande-mayden
For to wirchen his wille  wiþ-outen any synne
Ecce ancilla domini fiat michi & ceteraO.16.104: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after fiat, and a red parasign precedes the second line of text.
And in þatO.16.105: OC2 alone have þat in place of þe. wombe of þat wenche  was he fourty wokis
Til he wexe a faunt þoruȝ hir flesch  & of fyȝtyng couþe
To haue fouȝten wiþ þe feend  er ful tyme come
And peers þe plowman  parceyuede plener tyme
And lerede hym lechecraft  his lijf forto saue
Þat þouȝ he were woundid wiþ his enemy  to warische hymselue
And dide hym assaye his surgerie  on hem þat seek weren
Til he was parfiȝt practisour  if any perel fel
And souȝte out þe seke  & þe synful boþe
And saluede seke & synful  boþe blynde & croked
And comune wommen conuertede  & to good turnede
Non est sanis opus medico Set infirmis & ceteraO.16.116: OC2 alone include both infirmis and & cetera.O.16.116: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after medico, and a red parasign precedes the second line of text.
Boþe meseles & mute  & in þe menysoun blody
Ofte he helede swiche  he helde it for no maystrie
Saue þoo he lechede lazar  þat hadde yleyn in graue
Quotriduanus quelt  quyk dide hym walke
Ac as he made þe maystrie  mestus cepit esse
And wepte water wiþ hise yen  þere seyȝen it many
Summe þat þe siȝt seyȝen  seyden þat tyme
Þat he was leche of lijf  & lord of hye heuene
Iues iangledenO.16.125: O alone has the form iangleden; most B manuscripts have iangled. þer-aȝens  & iuggedenO.16.125: O alone has the form iuggeden; all other beta witnesses have Iuggede. lawes
And seyde he wrouȝte wiþ wichcraft  & wiþ þe deuelis myȝt
Demonium habes & ceteraO.16.127: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after demonium, so that it appears as two lines.
Þanne arn ȝe cherlis quod ich  & ȝoure children boþe
And sathan ȝoure saueour  ȝoure-self nowO.16.129: OC2MF alone lack a word between now and witnessen; most B manuscripts have ye. witnessen
For I haue saued ȝoure-self seiþ crist  & ȝoure sones after
Ȝoure bodyes . ȝoure beestis  & blynde men holpen
And fedde ȝow wiþ fisches  & wiþ fyue loues
And lafte baskettis ful of breed brokenO.16.133: O alone has breed broken in place of broke mete.  bere awey who-so wolde
And mysseyde þe Iues manlich  & manacede hem to bete
And knokkede on hem wiþ a koorde  & caste adoun her stalles
Þat in chirche chaffareden  or chaungeden any money
And seydeO.16.137: GOC2 alone lack a word between seyde and in; all other beta witnesses have it. in syȝt of hem alle  so þat alle herden
I schal ouer-turne þis temple  & adoun þrowe
And in þre dayes after  edifienO.16.139: OC2 alone have the form edifien; most B manuscripts have edifie. it newe
And maken it as myche ouþer more  in al manere poyntis
fol. 70rI
As euere it was . & as wyde  wherfore I hote ȝow
Of preyeris &O.16.142: GOC2 alone lack of before parfiȝtnesse. parfiȝtnesse  þis place þat ȝe calle
Domus mea domus oracionis vocabiturO.16.143: This line is written in the right margin.
Enuye & yuele wille  was in þe Iues
Þei castedenO.16.145: OC2 alone have the preterite form. & contreueden  to kille hym whanne þei myȝtenO.16.145: OC2 alone have the form myȝten in place of myȝte.
Iche day after oþerO.16.146: OC2 alone lack hir before tyme.  tyme þei awayteden
Til it befel on a friday  a litil bifore paske
Þe þorusday bifore  þere he made his maundee
Sittynge at þe soper  he seyde þeise wordis
I am sold þoruȝ oon of ȝow  he schal þe tyme rue 
Þat euere heO.16.151: A double solidus over each word indicates transposition of original he euere. his saueour solde  for siluer or ellis
Iudas ianglede þer-aȝens  ac iesus hym tolde
It was hymself soþeli  & seyde . tu dicis
Þanne wente forþ þat wickede man  & wiþ þe Iues mette
And tolde hem a tokene  how to knowe wiþ iesus
And which tokene to þis day  is to mycheO.16.156: GOC2 alone have ys to myche; most B manuscripts have to muche is. vsed
Þat is kyssyng & fayre contenaunce  & vnkynde wille
And so was wiþ Iudas  þoo he iesus bitrayede
Aue raby quod þat ribaude  & riȝt to hym he ȝede
And kiste hym to be cauȝt þerby  & killed of þe Iues
Þanne iesus to Iudas  & to þe Iues seyde
Falsnesse I fynde  in þi fayre speche
And gyle in þi glad chere  & galle in þi lawȝhyng
Þow schalt be aO.16.164: YOC2M alone include a. myrour  to many men to deceyue
Ac þe wers & þe wickednesse  schal worþe onO.16.165: GOC2F alone have on in place of vpon. þi-selue
Necesse est vt veniant scandala ve homini illi per quem & ceteraO.16.166: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after scandala, and a red parasign precedes the second line of text.
Þouȝ I . bi tresoun be taken  at ȝoure owne wille
Suffreþ myne apostelis in pays  & in pees gange
On a þorusday in þeO.16.169: OC2 alone include þe before þesternesse. þesternesse  þus wasO.16.169: An otiose mark appears above the <s> in was. he taken
Þoruȝ Iudas & Iues  iesus was his name
Þat on þe friday folewynge  for mankyndes sake 
Iustede . in ierusalem  a ioye to vs alle
On crosse vp-on caluarie  crist toke þe batayle
Aȝens þe deþ & þe deuel  distruyede her boþer myȝtes
Diede & deþ fordide  & day of nyȝt made
And I awakede þer-wiþ  & wipede myn yen
And after peers plowman  priede & starede
Estward & westward  I waytede after faste
And ȝede forþ as an idiot  in cuntree to aspieO.16.179: OC2 lack the following line attested by all other B manuscripts: "After Piers þe Plowman  many a place I souȝte."
And þanne mette I wiþ a man  on mydde-lente sunday
As hoor as an hawe-þorn  & abraham he hyȝte
fol. 70vI
IO.16.182: The initial capital is decorated with a red spray three lines in height. fraynede hym first  fram whennys he come
And of whennys he were  & whyderO.16.183: GYOC2 alone lack a word between whyder and he; most B manuscripts have þat. he þouȝte
IO.15.184: The initial capital is usually large and ornate. am feiþ quod þis freek  it falleþ not to lye
And of abrahams hous  an heroud of armes
I seke after a segge  þat I seyȝ onys
A ful boold bacheler  I knowe hym bi his blasen
What bereþ þat barn quod I þoo  so blisse þee be-tide
Þre leodes on oo lith  noon lenger þan oþer
Of oo mychel & oo magesteO.16.190: OC2 alone have mageste in place of myght.  in mesure & in lenkþe
Þat oon dooþ alle dooþ  & iche dooþ bi his one
Þe first haþ myȝt & mageste  maker of al þinge
Pater is his name  a persoone bi hym-selue
Þe liȝt of al þat lijf haþ  a loond & on waterO.16.193: The scribe here copies, then cancels, l. 197.
Þe secounde is of þat sire  soþfastnesse filius
Wardeyn of alO.16.195: OC2 alone include al. þat witt haþ  was euere wiþ-out gynnyng
Þe þridde haþhatteO.16.196: The error is shared by BmBo. þe holi goost  a persoone bi hym-selue
Þe liȝt of al þat lijf haþ  a londe & on water
Counfortour of creaturis  of hym comeþ al blisse
So þre bilongeþ for a lord  þat lordschip cleymeþ
Myȝt & mene  to knowe his owne myȝt
Of hym & of his seruaunt  & what þei suffrenO.16.201: OC2 alone have the form suffren; most B manuscripts have suffre. boþe
So god þat bigynnyngO.16.202: OC2Cot alone have bigynnyng in place of gynnyng. hadde neuere  but þoo hym good þouȝte
Sente forþ his sone  as for seruaunt þat tyme
To occupien hym heer  til issu were sprungenO.16.204: OC2 alone have sprungen; most B manuscripts have spronge.
Þat is children of charite  & holi chirche þe modir
Patriarkis & prophetis  & apostelis weren þe children
And crist & cristendom  & cristen holy chirche
II[n] menyng þat man muste  on oo god beleue
And þere hym likede & louede  in þre persoones hym schewedeO.16.209: Cr23OC2 lack the following line attested by all other B manuscripts: "And þat it may be so and sooþ [sheweþ it manhode]."
Wedlok & wydewehood  &O.16.210: OC2F alone have & in place of wiþ. virgynyte ynempned
In tokenyng of þe trinyte  was taken out of a man
Adam oure alþer fadir  eue was of hym-selue
And þe issu þat he hadde  it was of hem boþe
And eiþer is oþeres ioye  in þre sundry persoones
And in heuene & in erþe  oon synguler name
And þus is mankynde or manhed  of matrimoyn ysprungenO.16.216: O alone has ysprungen; most B manuscripts have spronge.
Myȝt is matrimoyn  þat multiplieþ þe erþe
And bitokeneþ truli  telle it if I durste
He þat first formede al  þe fadir of heuene
fol. 71rI
Þe sone is if I durste seye  resemblant to widewe
Deus meus deus meus vt quid dereliquisti meO.16.221: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after dereliquisti, and a red parasign precedes the second line of text, which appears above the first.
Þat is . creatour wexe creature  to knowe what was boþe
As widewe wiþ-outen wedlok  was neuere ȝit yseye
No more myȝte god be man  but if he modir hadde
So wydewe wiþ-oute wedlok  may not wel stonde
Ne matrimoyne wiþ-outen mulerie  is not myche to preyse
Maledictus homo qui non reliquit semen in israel .O.16.227: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after qui, and a red parasign precedes the second line of text.
Þus in þre persoones  is parfiȝtlich manhood
Þat is man & his make  & mulererO.16.229: O alone has the form mulerer; most B manuscripts have mulliere. children
And is not but gendre of generacioun  bifore iesu crist in heuene
So is þe fader forþ wiþ þe sone  & fre wille of boþe
Spiritus procedens &O.16.232: OC2 alone have & in place of a. patre & filioO.16.232: This line is written in the right margin.
Which is þeO.16.233: OC2 alone lack holy before goost. goost of al  & al is but oo god
Þus in somer I hym seyȝ  as I sate in my porche
I aroos vp & reuerencede hym  & riȝt fayre hym grette
Þre men to my siȝt  I made wel at ese
Wessche her feet & wipede hem  & afterward þei eten
Calues flesche & cake breed  & knewen what I þouȝte
Ful trewe tokenes bitwene vs been  to telle whanne me likeþ
First he fondede me  if I louede better 
Hym . or ysaak myn heir  þe which he hiȝte me kille
He wiste my wille bi hym  he wole me it alowe
I am ful siker in soule þerof  & my sone boþe
I circumciside my sone  siþ for his sake
My-self & my meyne  & alle þat male weren
Bledden blood for þat lordis sakeO.16.246: OC2 alone have sake in place of loue.  & hopen to blisse þe tyme
Myn affiaunce & my feiþ  is ferme in þis beleue
For hym-self bihyȝte to me  & to myn issu boþe 
Loond . & lordschip  & lijf wiþ-outen ende
To me & to myn issu  more ȝit he me grauntede 
Mercy . for oure mysdedis  as many tyme as we axe
Quam olim abrahe promisisti & semini eiusO.16.252: This line is written in the right margin. It is divided after promi-, and a red parasign precedes the second line of text.
And siþ he sente me to seye  I schudeschu[l]de do sacrifise
And do hym worschip wiþ breed  & wiþ wyn boþe
And callede me forþO.16.255: OC2 alone have forþ; most B manuscripts have foot. of his feiþ  hise folk for to saue
And defendede hem fro þe feend  folk þat on me leneden
Þus haue I been his heraud  heer & in helle
And counfortede many careful  þat after his comyng wayten
And þus I seke hym he seyde  for I herde seyn late
Of a barn þat baptisede hym  ion baptist was his name
Þat to patriarkes & prophetis  & oþere peple in derkenesse
Seyde . þat he seyȝ hymO.16.262: GOC2 alone have hym; most B manuscripts have here.  þat schulde saue vs alle
Ecce agnus dei & ceteraO.16.263: This line is written in the right margin.
fol. 71vI
I hadde wondir of hise wordis  & of hise wyde cloþis
For in his bosum he bare a þing  þat he blessede euere
And I lokede on his lappe  a lazar lay þer-inne
Amongys patriarkes & prophetis  pleyinge to-gyderes
What awaytist þou quod he þooO.16.268: OC2 alone include þoo.  & what woldist þou haue
I wolde wite quod I þoo  what is þisO.16.269: OC2 alone include þis. in ȝoure lappe
Loo quod he & lete me see  lord mercy I seyde
Þis is a present of myche price  what prynce schal it haue
It is a precious present quod he  ac þe pouke it haþ atached
And me þer-myd quod þat man  may no wed vs quyte
Ne no barn be oure boruȝ  ne brynge vs fram his daunger
Out of þe poukis pynfold  ne no meinpriseO.16.275: OC2 alone lack may before vs. vs fecche
Til he come þat I carpe of  crist is his name
Þat schal delyuere vsO.16.277: OC2 alone lack som day before out, and thus lack the second alliterating stave. out  of þe deuelis power
And better wed for vs legge  þan we been alle worþi
Þat is lijf for lijf  or ligge þus euere
Lollynge in my lappe  til swich a lord vs fecche
Allas I seyde þat synne  so longe schal lette 
Þe myȝt of goddis mercy  þat myȝte vs alle amende
I wepte for hise wordis  wiþ þat sawȝ I an-er
Rapelich renne forþ  þe riȝt weye he wente
I fraynede hym first  from whennys he come
And what he hiȝte & whidir he wolde  & whiȝtlich he tolde