fol. 44v (cont.)I
Incipit Passus Nonus.
ASF.9.1: The ornamental capital is in red and green ink with red and green flourishes running from the top to the bottom of the page in the left margin. y lay & lokede forþ / lowe vp-on þe greene.
I fel in a slumbrynge / & sone to me cam keende.F.9.2: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "And slepynge I seiȝ al þis and siþen cam kynde."
& nempnyd me by my name / & bad me nemyn hede.
Of þe worchynge of þis world / wit for to take.
& on heyȝ Mounteyn / þat Mydlerd hette.F.9.5: F omits Bx's "as me þo þouȝte."
I was þidir fet forþ / ensamples to knowe
Þoru euery creatures keende / my creatur to loveye.
I sey þe sunne & þe see / & þe sond after.
& bryddis & beestis / by here makes wentyn.
& wyȝlde wluesF.9.10: F uniquely reads wlues. Other B manuscripts have wormes. wlues, "wolves." Though appearing only this one time in F, the use of <w> alone for <wu> appears once in R as well (wlueliche R15.131, KD15.116) and may perhaps be attributed to alpha. in wodis / & wondirful foulis.
With flekkede fedres / & fele faire coloures.
Boþe man & his make / ful manye seyȝ y þere.F.9.12: F uniquely reads "ful manye seyȝ y þere." R has "I miȝte se bothe," and beta manuscripts have "I myȝte boþe biholde."
Boþe pouerte & plente / & eek pees & werre.
Blisse & also bale / y seyȝ þere boþe at oonysatoonys.
& men tooke Meede / & Mercy for-soke
Thanne Resoun shewede me / alle manere beestis.F.9.16: F's line is substantially revised. Other B manuscripts have "Reson I seiȝ sooþly sewen alle beestes." Alpha is likely to have been responsible for shewede since R has schewen.
In etynge & drynkynge / in gendrynge of keende.
& after cours of concepcioun / non took keep of oþir.F.9.18: F omits the following three lines from Bx:
As whan þei hadde ryde in Rotey tyme anoon riȝt þer-after
Males drowen hem to males amorwenynges by hemselue
And in euenynges also ȝede (or beta's þe?) males fro femelles.
Þar was non kow þoru kyȝnde / þat conceyvid hadde.
Þat wolde belwe after bole / ne boor after sowe.
Ne grete hors ne hakeneys / afterire beestis.
Ne þey medlid not with here makis / save man oone.
I be-held bryddis also / in busshis þey made nestis.
Was neuere ȝit wyȝe / hadde wit / to wirche þe leeste.
fol. 45rI
I hadde wondir of whom / & where þe pyȝe lernede.F.9.25: The scribe has written in red with red flourishes the numeral "IX" in the top right margin to indicate the passus number.
Stykkis to legge / in lengþe & in breede.F.9.26: F's reading is unique. Other B manuscripts have "To legge þe stikkes in which she leyeþ and bredeþ."
Þere is no wryghte as y wene / can wirche to hire paye.F.9.27: F's b-verse is unique. Bx reads "sholde werche hir nest to paye."
Ne Masoun to make a Moolde þerto / myche merveyleF.9.28: F uniquely reads merveyle. Bx has wonder. it were.
Ȝyt merveylid y moore / ofF.9.29: FG alone read of. Other B manuscripts have how. manye oþire bryddis.
Þey heledyn & heddyn / here heggysF.9.30: An inverse spelling for eggys. ful derne.
With MoosF.9.31: Moos, "moss." / in þe Maryȝs / þat men ne sholde hem fyȝnde.F.9.31: F is revised significantly. Bx reads as follows:
In Mareys and moores for men sholde hem noȝt fynde
And hidden hir egges whan þei þerfro wente.
& feer of oþire fowlys / & for wyȝlde beestys.
Summe tredyn here makys / & on trees breden.
& brynge forþ here bryddis / al a-bove þe grounde.
& summe blowe bele in bele / & with here breeþ conseyve.F.9.35: Other B witnesses read: "And some briddes at þe bile þoruȝ breþyng conceyued."
& summe kawkede y tok keep / as pekokys wirche.
Mychil merveylede me þan / what mayster þey hadde.
& who tawhte hem on trees / to tyȝmbre so hyȝe.
Fram alle beestys / here bryddis to save.F.9.39: F's line is unique. Other B manuscripts have "Ther neiþer burn ne beest may hir briddes rechen."
& after y lookede on þe see / & on þe sterris bryghte.
& manye selkouþis y seyȝ / y may not seyȝ nowþe.
I seyȝ flowres in þe frythȝ / with ful fayre colourys.F.9.42: The <c> is written more like <t> with an ascender.
Þat a-mongis þe grene gras / grewe ful soote.
Summe soote & summe sowr / gret selkouþ me þouhte
But of here keende coloures / to carpe were to longe.
But þat most merveyled me / & made my mood to change.
Þat Resoun took reward / & rewlede alle beestis.
Save man / & his make / manye tymesF.9.48: Alpha is responsible for unmetrical tymes. Beta manuscripts have tyme. & ofte.
No resoun rewlyþ hem / & y rebewkyd hym þanne.
& þus sadly to hym / my-seluen y seyȝde.
I have wondir of þe . quod y  þat Resoun art holde.
Þou makst man & his make / no myschef hem folwe.F.9.52: F has miscomprehended the sense here. Bx reads "Why þow ne sewest man and his make þat no mysfeet hem folwe." Alpha was quite possibly corrupt since R has schewest for sewest.
Þan Resoun a-ratid me / & seyde recche þe neuere.
Why y suffre . or not suffre / þou hast not to doone.
A-mende it / þou myght not / but tyȝme y a-byȝde.F.9.55: This line represents a succession of small errors followed by scribal smoothing in an attempt to make sense of botched copy. Bx reads as follows: "Amende þow it if þow myȝt for my tyme is to abide."
Suffrance is a souereyn vertu / & vengable is vengaunceF.9.56: The b-verse in other B manuscripts reads "and a swift vengeaunce."
Suffrance god suffrede / to goomes as y leve.F.9.57: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "Who suffreþ moore þan god quod he no gome as I leeue."
He myghte a-mende hem in a while / alle þat mys-fonde.F.9.58: MED, s. v. misfōn, "to make a mistake," occurs only here and in an early thirteenth-century devotional text, though the word is common in Old English. Bx reads "al þat mysstandeþ."
& ȝit he suffreþ / for sum mannys goode / & so is oure bettre.
Holy writ . quod þat weyȝ / wyssheþF.9.60: The scribe wrote <ssh> where we might expect <ss> for this word. Wyssheþ here is a form of wisseþ, "teaches, counsels, instructs." men to suffre. These thirteen lines appear only in alpha.
Propter deum  subiecti estote  omni creature.
Now wille ȝe leere a tale / was told me in towne.
How Frensshe men in France / a-faytyn here childryn.
fol. 45vI
Beele vertue est suffraunce  mal dire est pety vengance.
Bien dire & bien suffre  fait lui suffrant a bien venir.
/ [¶] For-þy  y rede þe Resoun / þou rewle better þy tunge.
& er þou my lyf lakke / looke þyn be to preyse.
For þere is no creature vndir criȝst / can formen hym-selue.
& yf a man myghte / make lakles hym-selue.
Ech man wolde ben lakles / leve þou non oþir.
Ne shalt fyȝnde but fewe / fayn wolde heere.
Of here fowle defawtys / be-fore here face reersed.
Þe witty wyȝsman / wroot wel in þe byble.
De re que te non molestat non certaueris . & in iudicioiniudic ioF.9.74: F alone adds "& in iudicio," from Ecclus. 11:9 which reads "De ea re quae te non molestat ne certeris; et in iudicio peccantium ne consistas."
/ [¶] For be a man fair or foul / It falleþ not hym to lakke.
Þe shap ne þe shafte / þat god shoop hym-selue.
For alle þynges he wrouhte wel / as þe writ wytnessiþ.
Et vidit deus cuntacun[c]ta que fecerat  & erant ualde bona.
God bad ech creature / in his kyȝnde encrese.
& al was to merthe with man / þat most woo þolyeþ
In foondynge of his fleshȝ / & of þe feend boþe.
For man was maad of mater / he may not fro it sterte.
Þat sum-tyme hym but suffre / to folwe his keȝnde.
Catoun a-cordiþ þerto / nemo sine crimine viuit.
/ [¶] Þo cawhte y colour a-non / & cumsede to ben a-shamed.
& y awakede þere-with / & woo was y thanne.
Þat y ne myghte in Metelys / more matere y-knowe.
Þanne chidde y my-selue / & seyde þese woordis.F.9.88: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "And þanne seide I to myself and chidde þat tyme."
Now what Dowel ys quod y  by dere god y knowe.
& as y keste vp myn eyȝes / oon lokede on me & askede.
What þyng þat Dowel ys / y-wis sire y not y seyde.F.9.91: F revises two problematic lines from Bx into one. Bx reads as follows:
Of me what þyng it were ywis sire I seide
To se muche and suffre moore certes quod I is dowel.
Þan seyde he haddist þou suffred / þo þou on slepe were.
Þou sholdist have knowe it of Clergye / & conseyvid it be resoun.
For Resoun wolde have reersyd þe / ryght as Clergye seydeF.9.94: F omits the following line from Bx: "Ac for þyn entremetynge here artow forsake."
Philosophus esses  si tacuisses.
Adam whilis he was heere / he hadde paradyȝs at his wille.
& whan he mamelede on his mete / he menede to knowe.
Þe wisdomF.9.98: The red ink on <d> appears to be unintended. of his god / & he was pyt fram blysse.
& ryȝht so ferde Resoun / be þyn rude speche.
Þou lakkedist lordly þyng / þat longyd þe not to done.
He hadde after no lykynge / for to leere þe moore.
/ [¶] & now wil priȝde & presumsyoun / paraunter þe a-peele.
fol. 46rI
Þat Clergyȝe inF.9.103: Alpha is responsible for in, which is omitted in Beta manuscripts. þyn cumpanye / nowht coueytyþF.9.103: F uniquely reads "nowht coueytyþ." Other B manuscripts have "ne kepeþ noȝt." eft to sytte.F.9.103: Alpha reads "eft to sytte." Beta manuscripts have "to suwe."
ForF.9.104: Alpha and some C manuscripts read For, which is not in beta manuscripts. shal neuere more no chydyngeneuere [chalangynge ne] chidynge / chastyse a man sunnere.
Þan shal needful shame / if he shape hym to a-mende.
For leete a drunke daffe / in a deep dyȝk falle.
& lete hym lygge longe þere / tyl hym lyste to ryȝse.
& þey Resoun rebewke hym / ȝit rekkeþ he neuere. Beta omits these verses through eye-skip on Bx's "hym þanne."
Of Clergye ne of his conseil / he a-cownteþ not a resshe.
For to betyn hym þanne / it were but pure synne.
But whan neede nemeþ hym vp / for dowhte leest he sterve.F.9.111: F omits Bx's "And shame shrapeþ hise cloþes and hise shynes wassheþ."
Þanne whot þat drunke daffe / wherfore he is to blame.
Ȝee seyn sooþ quod y be my sowle / y haue seyȝ þat ofte.
Þere smyt no man so smerte / ne skumfyȝteþF.9.114: F uniquely reads skumfyȝteþ. Other B manuscripts have smelleþ. non so sore
As shame dooþ þere he sheweth hym / no man loveþ his felachipe.F.9.115: Alpha is responsible for the b-verse. Beta manuscripts have the also defective reading "for euery man hym shonyeþ."
/ [¶] Why wyȝsse ȝee me þus . quod y  for y rebewked so Resoun.
Sertys quod he þat ys sooþ / & shoop hym for to walke.
& gan faren on hys weyȝ / & y folwede after.F.9.118: F has recomposed the line. Bx reads "And I aroos vp riȝt wiþ þat and folwed hym after."
& prayede hym of his curtesyȝe / to telle me his name.
BPassus 12
I am ymagenatyf quod he / ydel am y neuere.
Þowhȝ y sytte be my-selue / in seeknesse or in helthe.
& y have folwid þe in feyþ / fyve & fowrty wynter.
& manye tyme have mevid the / to þynkyn on þyn ende.F.9.123: F omits Bx's "And how fele fernyeres are faren and so fewe to come."
& on þyn wyȝlde wantounnesse / þo þow in ȝowthe were.
To a-mende þe in mydde age / a lestlest þy myght fayle after.
& in þyn olde elde / þanþa[t] canst evele suffre.
Ony pouerte or penaunce / or prayerys to byddyn.
Si non in prima vigilia nec in secunda
A-mende þe while þou myght / þou hast be warned ofte.
With seeknesses / & penancesF.9.130: F is responsible for substituting seeknesses for poustees, but alpha had already changed pestilences to penances. / with pouertes & angris.
For with þo bittre baleyse / god beteþ hise chyldryn.
Qvem diligo  castigo.F.9.132: Alpha omits the following two lines:
And Dauid in þe Sauter seiþ of swiche þat loueþ Iesus
Virga tua & baculus tuus ipsa me consolata sunt.
/ [¶] Al-þeyhȝ þou strike me with goddis staf / with-outyn stykkes soreF.9.133: The b-verse makes little sense. Bx reads "wiþ stikke or wiþ yerde."
It is but merthe to me / to a-mende my sowle.
Why medlyst þe with makyngF.9.135: Alpha and M have the possibly correct singular form. Beta manuscripts have the plural makynges. þan / þou myght bettre go praye.
& bydde for hem þat ȝeve þe breed / for þere be bookis y-nouwe.
To tellyn what ys . dobet / & Dowel . bothe.F.9.137: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "To telle men what dowel is dobet and dobest boþe."
& prechoures to preve what it is / of many a peyre freris.
Þan wiste y wel he seyde sooþ / & þouhte me to excuse.
fol. 46vI
&F.9.140: Alpha is responsible for &. Beta manuscripts omit it. seyde Catoun confortyd his sone / ful konyngly y wene.F.9.140: F's b-verse is unique. Bx reads "þat clerk þouȝ he were."
Sum-tyme to solace hym-selue / & sum-tymesadly to stodie.F.9.141: F's reading for this line is unique. Bx reads "To solacen hym som-tyme as I do whan I make." The excision of sadly to before stodie by lining through is not entirely characteristic of this scribe, and it is possible that he did not intend to omit to.
F.9.142: The scribe has left a space for a Lombard capital <I>. nterpone[I]nterpone tuis  interdum gaudia curis.
& also of holy men here y / hou þat þey oþir-while.
Pleyedyn þe parfyȝtere to been / in here prayeres after.F.9.144: F's b-verse is unique and represents an attempt to correct a corrupt archetype. Bx has erroneous "in manye places."
Nou if þere where ony wyht / þat wolde me telle.
What were Dowel . & Dobet . & Dobest þe þrydde.
Wolde y neuere do werk / but weendyn to holy chirche.
& þere byddyn my bedis / but whan y eete or slepe.
See Poulis pistil quod he  he preueþ what ys Dowel.
F.9.150: Space was left for a Lombard capital <F>. Ides[F]ides . Spes . Karitas . MaiorF.9.150: Alpha is responsible for the omission of et before Maior. horum est Karitas.
He seyþ feyþ . hope . & Charite . alleF.9.151: Alpha lacks beta's and before alle. ben goode.
& savyn men sundry tymes / but non soneF.9.152: F uniquely omits so before sone. as charite.
For he doþ wel with-outyn dowte / þat doþ as lewte techiþ.
Þat ys  If þat þou be maryed / þou love þy make leelly.
& lyve as lawe wille / þeF.9.155: Alpha's þe is lacking in beta. whilis ȝee lyven bothe.
/ [¶] Also If þou be Relygous / renne þou neuere fram home.
To Rome ne to Roche-madoure / but as þyn rewle tellyþ.
& holde þe vndir obedyence / þat is þe heye wey to hevene.
& if þou be a Mayde meeke / & þou myghte wel þe contenue.
Seeke þou neuere seynt forthere / for þyn sowle helthe.
For what made Lucifer / to leese þe hyȝe hevene.
Er salomon his sapience / or sampson his strengthe.
Er Ioob al his Ioyȝe / of hise Ientile childryn.F.9.163: F has substantially revised the line. Bx reads "Iob þe Iew his ioye deere he it abouȝte."
Er Arystotil or virgyle / & ypocraas þe wise.
Er Alysaundre þat al wan / & alengelyF.9.165: alengely, "wrechedly." he endide.
Al was but catel & vn-kende wit / a-cumbred hem alle.F.9.166: F has extensively revised this line. Bx has "Catel and kynde wit was combraunce to hem alle."
Er Felyce for hire fayrnesse / yt fel hire al to sklaundre.
& Rosemound ryght soo / rewfully she be-sette.
Þe Bewhte of hire body / in badde vseF.9.169: Alpha reads "badde vse" for beta's "baddenesse she." dispendyd.
Of manye swyche may yF.9.170: The word order "may y" is owed to alpha. rede / boþe of men & wommen.
Þat wyse wordys wolde shewe / & wirche þe contrarye.
F.9.172: Space was left for a Lombard capital <S>. unt[S]unt homines nequam bene de virtute loquentes.
/ [¶] Þere ben ryche renkys þat do so / þat gadren & sparen.
Paraunter þem þey moost haten / mynystre here goodys.F.9.174: F's b-verse is unique. Other B manuscripts have "mynistren it at þe last."
& þat ys / for þey ofte seen / so fele nedy folkys.
& loveþ hem nouht as godF.9.176: F substitutes god for oure lord. The same substitution appears in GYOC 2CB. Cf. F9.316, 388. bit / þey lese here owen soule.
fol. 47rI
God byddis ȝou do þusF.9.177: The a-verse is unique to F. / date  & dabitur uobis.
& þerfore catel & vnkynde wit / a-cumbreþ ful manye. These lines are attested only in alpha.
WooF.9.179: An otiose curl appears above the first <o>. ys hym / þat hem weldiþ / but he hem wel dispende.
F.9.180: Space was left for a Lombard capital <S>. cienti[S]cienti bonum & non facienti  uarijs flagellis uapulabit.
Þe book seiþ þat sapyence / swellyþ a mannys sowle.
F.9.182: Space was left for a Lombard capital <S>. apiencia[S]apiencia inflat
/ [¶] & also / Rycchesse doþ ryȝt so / but if þe roote be trewe.
But grace ys grateF.9.184: F attempts to make sense of alpha's grace, attested by R, or confuses <c> with <t>, losing the B text's pun on gras meaning "a plant or herb of healing power" MED s.v. gras n. 2(b). þerforeF.9.184: Alpha reads þerfore. Beta manuscripts have þerof. / þo grevaunces to a-bate.
But grace growyþ / nowher / but a-mongys lowe.F.9.185: F omits Bx's "Pacience and pouerte þe place is þer it groweþ."
& in men in leele lyvynge / & in lyf-holy.
& þat gaf hem þe holy goost / as þe gospel tellyþ.
F.9.188: Space was left for a capital <S>. piritus[S]piritus ubi vult spirat.
Clergye & kende wit / comeþ of syghte & techynge.
As þe book beriþ wytnesse / to beurnys þat kunne rede.
F.9.191: Space was left for a capital <Q>. vod[Q]vod simus loquimur & quod uidimus testamur.
Of quod simus loquimurF.9.192: F uniquely repeats loquimur from the preceding line. Other B manuscripts omit it. komeþ clergye / aF.9.192: Alpha is responsible for a. Beta manuscripts have and. conynge of hevene.
& of quod vidimus komeþ wit / þoru syghte of oure eyȝes.
But grace is a gifte of god / & of gret love springiþ.
Ȝit knew neuere clerk hou he comeþ / be kende witys weyes.F.9.195: F's b-verse is unique. Other B manuscripts have "ne kynde wit þe weyes."
F.9.196: Space was left for a capital <N>. escit[N]escit aliquis vnde venit aut quo vadit
But ȝit is Clergye to comende / & kende wit boþe.
& namely Clergye for cristis love / for he knoweth þe roote.F.9.198: Bx reads "þat of Clergie is roote."
For god wroot to Moyses / þat he sholde wisse þe peple. The elaborate hypotactic structure of Bx and the loss of a line in alpha appear to have defeated the revising scribe. He retains key words, but fails adequately to capture the sense. Bx reads for this passage:
For Moyses witnesseþ þat god wroot for to wisse þe peple
In þe olde lawe as þe lettre telleþ þat was þe lawe of Iewes
That what womman were in auoutrye taken wher she riche or poore
Wiþ stones men sholde hir strike and stone hire to deþe
A womman as we fynden was gilty of þat dede
Ac crist of his curteisie þoruȝ clergie hir saued
For þoruȝ caractes þat crist wroot þe Iewes knewe hemselue
Giltier as afore god and gretter in synne.
Affter þe lettre tellyþ / þe lawe so was to þe Iewis.
What womman was take in a-vowtery / where she ryche or pore.
With stonys she sholde be stryken / & stoned to dethe.F.9.202: Alpha omits the following line from Bx: "A womman as we fynden was gilty of þat dede."
& Cryst of his curtesye / o womman he savede.
For þoruh cristis carectysF.9.204: Alpha's a-verse, reflected here, is more laconic than beta's "For þoruȝ caractes þat crist wroot." / þe Iewys knewe hem-selue.
Geltyere a-fore god / & grettere was here synne.
Þan þe womman þat þere stood / & wentyn a-wey for shame.
Þus þoruh clergye þere / confortyd was þe womman.
Holy chircheF.9.208: Alpha is responsible for the failure in alliteration here. Beta witnesses have kirke. In view of F-Redactor's interventionist tendencies and the evidence elsewhere that his own dominant form was kirke, his leaving this form indicates the sporadic and unsystematic nature of his interventions. knoweth wel / þat cristis wrytynge hire savede.
& so ys Clergye gret confort / to creatures þat wille repente.
& also to manshide men / in Mischeef at here nede.
For goddis body myghte not be of breed / with-outyn clergye.
Þe wiche body in forme of breedF.9.212: F alone has "in forme of breed." / ys boote to þe ryghtful.
& deþ / & dampnacioun to hem / þat dyȝen in vn-klennesse.
fol. 47vI
ButF.9.214: Alpha had But or R's Ac. Beta witnesses have As. cristis carecte confortid hire / & alle þei were coupable.
For þe womman þat þe Iewis brouhte / cryst þouhte to save.
F.9.216: Space was left for a capital <N>. olite[N]olite iudicare  & non Iudicabimini.
/ [¶] Ryght so goddis dere body / but it be worthyly take.
Dampneþ vs at þe day of dome / as dideF.9.218: An otiose <e> abbreviation follows <d>. þe carecteF.9.218: The word order and the singular form of carecte are alpha's. Beta witnesses have "as þe carectes dide." þe Iewis.
For-þy / y conseile þe for cristis sake / clergye þat þou lovye.
For keende wit . is of his ken / & neer kosynes be boþe.
To oure lord leve þou me / for-þy / love hem y reede.
For boþe been as Mirroures / to a-mende oure defautis
& leederis to lewede men / & for lettryd boþe.
/ [¶] For-þy  lakke þou neuere logyk lawe / ne hise leve customys.
Ne countreplete no clerkys / y conseyle þe for euere.
For as man may not see / þat mysseþ his syghte.F.9.226: Alpha is responsible for syghte. Beta and C manuscripts have eiȝen.
No more can no clerk clergye / but he cacche it in bokis.
& al-þeyhȝ man make bookys / ȝit god is Mayster
& seynt spiryȝt þe saumplarie / to þe man þat wryt yt.F.9.229: F miscomprehended the sense of the passage. The b-verse in Bx reads "& seide what men sholde write."
For ryght as wit seruyþ a man / to seen in þe strete.
Ryght so leryþ lettrure / man to knowe resoun.F.9.231: F's b-verse is unique. Bx reads "lewed men to Reson."
& as a blynd man in bataile / beriþ wepyn to fyȝte.
& haþ non hap with hax / his enemy to hytte.
No more can a lewid manF.9.234: F's a-verse perhaps reflects corruption in alpha. If R's almost nonsensical "kende wedded man" in place of beta's "kynde witted man" reflects alpha, F's omitting kynde and substitution of "lewed man" represents an attempt to make sense of the half-line. / but clerkes hym teche.
For al ysF.9.235: ys, "his." kende wit / to be cristnyd & savyd.
Wiche ys coffre of cristis tresor / & clerkysF.9.236:An otiose curl appears over the <c>. kepe þe keyȝe.
To vnloke it at here lykyng / vnto þe lewid peple.
& graunteþ mercy for mysdedis / yf men wille yt aske.
Buxumly & benygnly / & bydde it / of grace.
/ [¶] Archa dei in þe olde lawe / levites it kepten.
Hadde neuere lewid man leve / to leyn hond þere-onne.
But he were prest or prestis sone / patriarch or prophete.
Saul for his mys-sacrifyse / sorwe hym by-tydde. These lines are attested only in alpha.
& hise sones also / for þat synne myschevedyn.
& manye mo oþire men / þat weryn none levites.
Þat with archa dei wentyn / with worchepeful reuerencis.
& leyde on hond / & lyfte it vp / & lurn here lyf after.
/ [¶] For-þy  y conseyle alle creatures / no clergye ȝee dispise.
fol. 48rI
Ne settiþ lyght be here scyence / what so þei do hem-selue.
Tak here wordis at worþ / here wytnesses be trewe.
& medle not meche with hem / to meve hem to wratthe.
Leest Charyte be chased owtF.9.252: R, the only other witness to this line, reads "Lest cheste chasen vs." / þan ech man choppethir.
F.9.253: Space was left for a capital <N>. olite[N]olite tangere Cristos meos.
Clergyȝe is keye & kepereF.9.254: R reads "kynge and kepere" for F's "keye & kepere," while beta witnesses have only "kepere." / vndvnd[ir] cryȝst of hevene.
Whas þere neuere no knyght / but Clergyȝe hym made.
For keende wyt komeþ / of alle kenne syghtys.
Of beestys & of bryddis / of trewþe / & of disseytys.
/ [¶] Lyuerys be-fore vs / leernede bookys to make.F.9.258: Bx fails in alliteration, and both alpha and F attempted correction. Bx has "Lyueris toforn vs vseden to marke." Alpha and Cr have make in place of beta's marke.
Þe selkowthis þat þey seyȝen / here sones for to teche.
& helde it an heyȝ scyence / here wittys to knowe.
But þorhȝ here scyencis soþly / was neuere sowle savid.
Ne bowhtF.9.262: Alpha introduced the reading bowht. Beta witnesses read broȝt. be here bookys / to blysse ne to Ioyȝe.
For al here kende knowynge / cam of dyuerse syghtys.
Boþe Patriarchis & prophetis / repreven here scyencis.
& seyn he wordhe[re] word[is] ne here scyenceF.9.265: F uniquely reads scyence. Other B manuscripts have wisdome (R) or plural wisdomes (beta). / was al but folye.
As to þe Clergyȝe of crist / a-cowntyd it is a trefle.
Sapiencia huius mundi  Stulticia est apud deum.F.9.267: Alpha omitted the following lines attested in beta:
For þe heiȝe holy goost heuene shal tocleue
And loue shal lepe out after into þis lowe erþe
And clennesse shal cacchen it and clerkes shullen it fynde
Pastores loquebantur ad inuicem
He spekeþ þere of riche men riȝt noȝt ne of riȝt witty
Ne of lordes þat were lewed men but of þe hyeste lettred oute
Ibant magi ab oriente &c.
If any frere were founde þere I ȝyue þee fyue shillynges
Ne in none beggers cote was þat barn born
But in a burgeys place of Bethlem þe beste
Set non erat ei locus in diuersorio et pauper non habet diuersorium.
/ [¶] To Pastores & to poetis / aperede anF.9.268: Alpha is responsible for an. Beta manuscripts and C have þe. angil.
& bad hem goon to Bedleem / cristis berthe honowre[to] honowre.
He song a song of solace / wiche wasF.9.270: The scribe left the remainder of the line blank. Bx reads "Gloria in excelsis deo."
Ryche men rowhted þoo / þat in here reste weryn. These two lines are attested only in alpha.
Whan to shepperdis a sterre shon / a shewere of blysse.
&F.9.273: Alpha is responsible for &. Beta manuscripts and C omit it. Clerkis knewen it wel / & kemen with presentis.
& dyde omage & honour / to hym þat was al-myghty.
Why y have told þis tale / y took ful good heede.
How þou contraryedist Clergye / with þy crabbide wordis.
Þat lewede men / lyghtlokere / þan lettrid men weryn savid.
& Clerkys / þan cleer wittyd men / of þe cristene peple.F.9.278: The scribe's inattention turns the line on its head. Bx reads "Than clerkes or kynde witted men of cristene peple." Partially erased, partially legible characters appear in the right margin. The legible <a> and partially legible <. .g . ll> may have been intended to identify the speaker (the he of l.270) with the angel of l.268. Additional erased and illegible characters appear immediately below.
& þou seydist soþ of summe / & see an ensample.F.9.279: F's b-verse is unique, and the corruption of R suggests that he has attempted to repair a defective exemplar. R has "ac se in whanere" in place of beta's "ac se in what manere."
/ [¶] Tak two stronge men / & in Temse hem caste.
& looke boþe ben naked / noon be / but as oþyr.
Þat oon can wel swymme / & konynge to dyve.F.9.282: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "That oon haþ konnynge and kan swymmen and dyuen."
& þat oþir is lewyd to laboure / for he lerned it neuere.
Wiche trowist þou of hem two / in temse shal drenche.
But he þat nevere dyvede / ne neuere cowhde of swymmyng
For þe swymmere is saaf / yf so hym-selue yt lyke.F.9.286: F and Cot omit the following line from Bx: "Ther his felawe flet forþ as þe flood likeþ."
fol. 48vI
& þat oþir man ys in drede to drechedre[n]che / for he dyde neuere swymme.F.9.287: Alpha omits the following line attested by beta witnesses: "That swymme kan noȝt I seide it semeþ to my wittes."
Ryght so quod þe renke / ryght / Resoun shewyþ.
He þat knoweth Clergyȝe / can sunnere a-ryȝse.
Owt of synne to be saf / þey he synne ofte.
If hym lyke & lyste / þanne ony lewede gooky.F.9.291: F uniquely reads gooky. Other B manuscripts have leelly.
For if þe Clerk be konynge / he knoweth what ys synne.
& þorhu contrisyoun & confessioun / confortyd ys his sowle.F.9.293: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "And how contricion wiþoute confession conforteþ þe soule."
As þou seest in þe Sawter / in a spalm it tellethȝF.9.294: F's b-verse is unique. Other B manuscripts read: "in Salmes oon or tweyne." Alpha and L have singular spalm for beta's plural Salmes.
How Contricyoun ys comendid / for he caste a-wey synne.
Beati quorum remisse sunt iniquitates . & quorum tecta sunt peccata.F.9.296: Alpha and Hm have peccata. Beta manuscripts omit it.
Þis vers conforteþ euery clerk / & kenneþF.9.297: Alpha is responsible for kenneþ. Beta manuscripts have couereþ. hym fram wanhope.
In wiche þe foule fendF.9.298: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "In which flood þe fend." / fondeþ a man hardest.
Þere þe lewid man lyþ stylle / & after lewtele[n]te lookeþ.
& haþ no contricyoun ne shryfte / for þere-of / ne can he telle.F.9.300: F's reading is unique. Bx is corrupt, reading "And haþ no contricion er he come to shrifte & þanne kan he litel telle."
But as hise loorys-men lerne hym / so he be-leveþ & troweth.
After his parsoun or parshe prest / parawnter þey be vnkonynge boþe.F.9.302: F's b-verse is unique. R reads "and par auenter bothe," and beta witnesses have "and parauenture" with Vnkonnynge in the following a-verse.
F omits Bx's "Vnkonnynge to lere lewed men as luc bereþ witnesse."
Dum cecus ducit cecumF.9.303: Alpha omitted the following line attested by beta witnesses: "Wo was hym marked þat wade moot wiþ þe lewed."
Weel may þatþat [barn] blesse hym / þat sette hym fyrst to skole.F.9.304: The revised b-verse is to be attributed to alpha. R reads "hym sette to scole," while beta manuscripts read "þat hym to book sette."
Þat þorhu his lettrure lerned / his lyf is savid & sowleF.9.305: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "That lyuynge after lettrure saued hym lif and soule."
Dominus pars hereditatis mee / ys a merye versikleF.9.306: The b-verse is written over an erasure, and the <k> of versikle is corrected from <c> in a different ink by a contemporary hand.
It haþ take fram Tyburne / ten thowsende þeuys.F.9.307: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "twenty stronge þeues."
Þere lewede þevis be lollyd vp / loo  who haþ þe bettre.F.9.308: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "loke how þei be saued."
Þe theef þat hadde grace of god / on good fryday to speke.
Was for he ȝeeldid hym to criȝst / & knowleched hym gylty.F.9.310: Alpha omits the following line: "And grace asked of god and he is euere redy."
& buxum was in meende / his Mercy was to crave.F.9.311: F substantially revised this line which in Bx reads "That buxomliche biddeþ it and ben in wille to amende hem."
/ [¶] But þeyhȝ þat þeef hadde hevene / he hadde non heyȝ blysse.
As seynt symound or stevene / þat have disservid yt better.F.9.313: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "As Seint Iohan and oþere Seintes þat deserued hadde bettre."
Ryght as Man ȝeve me / meete a-myddis his halle.
F.9.315: Scribal ".a." appears in the left margin, indicating that the scribe intended that this line, originally written after F9.317, should precede it instead. The actual order in the manuscript is the order of Bx, and presumably this reflects's F's immediate exemplar, but we have followed the scribe's instruction as to his own intention. The change is attributable not to F-Redactor but to the immediate scribe. & sytte boordles beggerely / be my-selue on grownde.
F.9.316: The scribe has written ".b." in the left margin by this line. See the textual note to the preceding line for discussion. I have meete ryght a-nowh / but not so myche worchepe.
As þey þat syttyn at þe tableF.9.317: F's omission of the alliterating stave syde before table is shared by GYOC2CB, probably reflecting the FG scribes' sense that a side table is not the place for the sovereign. The omission makes more sense in FG where or is omitted before with than in the other manuscripts that make the change. For other agreements among these manuscripts, see F9.176, 388. / with þe souereyn of þe place.
So it fareþ be þat feloun / þat on good fryday was savid.
He syt neyþir with Iohan ne Iemes / with Ierom / ne with awstyn.F.9.319: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "He sit neiþer wiþ Seint Iohan Symond ne Iude." Alpha is responsible for the omission of Seint in the a-verse, but F revised the line to fit a new alliterative stave.
Ne with Martyres ne confessoures / ne with Maydenys clene.F.9.320: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "Ne wiþ maydenes ne with martires ne (R only) Confessours ne wydewes."
But be hym-selue as a soleyn / þat seruyd ys in þe halle.
For he þat ys oonys a theef / he is euere after in dawnger.
& as lawe wille lyke / to make hym lyve or dyȝe.
De peccato propiciato / noli esse sine metu.
fol. 49rI
But for toF.9.325: The to is added above the line in a different ink by a contemporary hand, we think the original scribe's. servyn a seynt / & swich a þeef to-gydres.
It were neyþir resoun ne reyght / to rewarde hem y-lyche.
& ryght as Troianus þe knyght / tylte not in-to helle.
Þat crist hadde hym lyghtly owt / so leve y it be in heveneF.9.328: Alpha had omitted thief, and F revised to make sense of what he found. Beta witnesses read "so leue I þe þef be in heuene."
For he is in þe lowest in hevene / if oure be-leve trewe[be] trewe.
& wolF.9.330: The same spelling occurs in R, reflecting an alpha reading. loosly / he lolleþ þere / be lawe of holy chirche.
Þere þe byble seyþF.9.331: F uniquely introduces the Latin tag with this a-verse, but R has And. Beta witnesses begin the line with Qui or Quia. . RedditeF.9.331: Alpha reads Reddite. Beta manuscripts have reddit. vnicuique iuxta opera sua.
But why þat oon þeef on þe croos / creaunt gan hym ȝeelde.
Rathere þan þat oþir theef / þou þynkst me to a-pose.
Alle þe Clerkys vndir crist / ne cunne þe skylle telle.F.9.334: Alpha is responsible for telle. Beta manuscripts have assoille.
Qvare placuit  quia deusF.9.335: F uniquely reads deus. Other B manuscripts omit it. voluit.
/ [¶] And so y seyȝ to the / þat sekyst after þo weyȝes.
& hast y-resoned Reson / with rebewkyng as it were.
& wylnest of wyȝlde bryddys / of here bredyng to knowe. Beta attests these lines in a different order, exchanging 339 with 338 and 341 with 340.
Why summe lowe[be] lowe & summe on lofte / þy lykynge were to here.
& how þe flowres in þe frythȝ / have so faire hewes.
Wher-of þey kacchen here colourF.9.341: Alpha has singular colour. Beta manuscripts have plural colours. / so cleer & so bryghte.
& of þe stones & þe sterrys / þou stodyest in þyn meende.
How þey may so styken / & shynen fram þe walkene.F.9.343: This line replaces the following one from Bx: "How euere beest ouþer brid haþ so breme wittes."
Clergye ne keende wit / knew neuere þe cause.
But keende knoweth þe cause / no creature ellis.
He ys þe Pyes patrone / & pit it in hys ere.
Þat there þe thorn ys thykkest / þere to bygge & brede.F.9.347: Alpha reads "þere to builde and brede." F and C independently supply the synonymous bygge. Beta manuscripts have "to buylden and brede."
& keende kenneþ þe Pekook / to kawken with his make.
& keende kennede Adam / to knowe hise priue membrys.
& tawhte hym & Eve / to hele hem with leevys.
/ [¶] But lewed men manye tymes / Maystris a-pose.
Why Adam heled not hys mowþ / whan he eet þe appil.
Rathere þan his lykam lowe / þis is a lewid mannys maunde.F.9.353: F's b-verse is unique. Bx reads "lewed asken þus clerkes."
Keende knoweth why he dyde so / but no Clerk ellis.
Of bryddis & of beestys / men be olde tymes.
Ensamples tooken be termes / as tellyn þe Poetys.
How þe fayrest foul / fowlest þey gendren.
& feblest foul of flyght / þat fleeþ or swymmeþ.
Þat ys þe prowhde Pookok / & ryche men he be-tokneþ.
For þe pokok &F.9.360: The ampersand here stands for an, "if." he be pursued / he may not flee hyȝe.
For trayle of his tayl / ouer-take ys he soone.
fol. 49vI
& his fleshe ys foul fleshe / & hise feet foule bothe.
& he haþ an vnlovely steveneF.9.363: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "And vnlouelich of ledene." F substitutes stevene for ledene again at F9.381. / & loþly to here.
Ryght so þe ryche man / if he his rycchesse kepiþ.
& deleþ it not tyl his deþ-day / þe tayl of alle sorwe.
Ryght as þe pennys of þe Pekok / peyneþ hym in fleyng.
So is possessioun peyne to þe ryche / of pens & of noblys.
& to alle hem þat syluer holdiþ / tyl here tayl be plukkyd.F.9.368: An otiose mark is written over the <p>.
& þeyhȝ þe ryche repente þanne / & be-rewe þe tyme.
Þat euere he gadrede so grete / & gaf þerof so lytyl.
Þeyhȝ he þanne criȝe to crist / with clene wyl y leve.
Ful lytil grace ys grauntyd hym / for god may not hym heere.F.9.372: This line replaces the following one from Bx: "His ledene be in oure lordes ere lik a pies."
But whan his kareyn ys kowchyd / & in kave beryed.
I leve it flawmeþ foule / þe foolde al a-bowten.
Þat yt envenymeþ þere it lyþ / alleire þoru his atter.
Be þe poo feet ys vndirstonde / as it seyþ in Avenet.
Executoris be þo false frendis / þat fulfylle not his wille.
Al is wrete to bere witnesse / to wirche as heF.9.378: Alpha reads he. Beta manuscripts have it. wolde.
Ryght as þe Poete preveþ þe pookok / men pulle hise fedres.F.9.379: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "Thus þe Poete preueþ þat þe pecok for hise feþeres is reuerenced."
Ryght so is þe ryche man / be-reeft hym fram hise goodis.F.9.380: F's reading is unique. Bx reads "Riȝt so is þe riche by reson of hise goodes."
Þe Larke þat is a lasse foul / ys more lovely of stevene.
& wel a-wey of wenge / & swyftere / þan þe pookok.
& of fleshȝ be fele fold / boþe fattere & swettere.
Ryght so / to lowe lyvynge men / þe larke may be lykned.F.9.384: F uniquely reads "may be lykned." Other B manuscripts have "is resembled."F.9.384: An otiose mark appears over the <n>.
ForF.9.385: Alpha is responsible for For. Beta manuscripts omit it. Aristotil þe grete clerk / swiche talis he tellyþ.
Þe larke he lykneþ in his gloseF.9.386: Alpha is responsible for glose. Beta manuscripts and C have logik. R has glosing. / þe leeste foul owte.
& for-soþe of Salomon / no Scripture can telle.F.9.387: In relation to Bx this line and the next are transposed.
Wheyþir he be saaf / or nonF.9.388: The omission of saaf (2) is shared by CrGYOC2CB. Cf. F9.176, 316. / þe soþe telliþ no byble.F.9.388: F's b-verse is unique. Bx reads "þe soþe woot no clergie."
But god is so good y hope / þat sytthe he gaf hym wyttis.
To wysshen wyȝen þere-with / þat wyssen vs be saved.
& þe bettre for hise bookis / to bydde for hym we be holde.
Þat god of his grete grace / grawnte his sowle reste.F.9.392: Alpha is responsible for grawnte and the singular phrase "his sowle." Beta manuscripts have gyue and "hir soules."
For lettrid men weryn lewede / ne were loore of bookys.
Alle þese Clerkys quod y tho  þat on crist be-leven
Seyn in here sermonys / þat neyþir Iewys ne sarsyȝnes.
Ne no creature lyȝk to crist / with-outyn cristnyng worþ saved.
Contra quod ymagenatyf þo  & komsede for to lowre.
& seyde vix saluabitur iustus in die Iudicij.
Ergo  Saluabitur quod he / & seyde no more latyn.
fol. 50rI
Troianus þat trewe knyght / took neuere no cristendomF.9.400: The scribe has written "X" in red with red flourishes in the top right margin to indicate the passus number.
& he is saaf as seyþ þe book / & his soule in blysse.
ButF.9.402: Alpha is responsible for F's But and R's Ac. Beta manuscripts have For. þere is fullyng in þe funt / & also in blood shedyng.
& þoru þe holy goostF.9.403: F alone reads "holy goost" in place of correct fire. An intelligent sophistication, it is perhaps attributable to the F redactor. is fullyng / & þat ys ferme be-leve.
Aduenit ignis diuinus non comburens sed illuminans.
But þe knyghtF.9.405: Though alpha is responsible for the omission of þat before trespased, F alone among B witnesses substitutes þe knyght for truþe. trespased neuere / ne tranuersydtran[s]uersydF.9.405: CrLR also read transuersed, a reading appearing in numerous C manuscripts. Beta has trauersed. See Kane-Russell's Piers Plowman: The C Version (London: Athlone Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles: U of California P, 1997), p. 487. a-geyn his lawe.
& be-leved as was tawht hym / for he ne knew no bettre. F attempted to simplify this notoriously difficult passage, translating loosely. Bx reads as follows:
But lyueþ as his lawe techeþ and leueþ þer be no bettre
And if þer were he wolde amende and in swich wille deieþ
Ne wolde neuere trewe god but trewe truþe were allowed.
& if he were wykke he wolde a-mende / & in swich a wille dyȝeþ.
Ne wolde neuere trewe god / but his wil were a-lowed.
& were it worþ . or not worþ / þe beleve ys gret in trewþe.
& an hope hangynge þerin / þerfore meede to have.F.9.410: Bx reads "to haue a mede for his truþe."
For deus dicitur quasi dans vitam eternam suis . idF.9.411: F uniquely reads id. Bx has hoc. est . fidelibus.
Et alibi . Si ambulauero in medio vmbre mortis non timebo mala quoniam tu mecum es domine.F.9.412: F uniquely reads "non timebo mala quoniam tu mecum es domine." Other B manuscripts conclude the line with mortis.
The glose grawntiþ vpon þat vers / a gret meede of trewþe.
Boþe wit & wysdom quod þat wyȝ / weryn sumtyme a tresor.
To kepe hem fram[wiþ a] comoun / no catelle was bettre.
& myche merthe & manhed / & with þat word he vanshede.
Explicit Passus Nonus.