fol. 87r (cont.)I
passus xxus de visione & primus
Passus xxusvicesimus & primus de dobest
ThanneL.20.1: A small guide letter <t> appears in the left margin. The ornamental capital is in a different style from the other passus beginnings. as I went by þe way · whan I was þus awaked
Heuy-chered I ȝede · and elynge in herte
I ne wiste where to ete · ne at what place
And it neighed nyeghe þe none · & with nede I mette
That afronted me foule · and faitour me called
CoudestowL.20.6: LF alone read Coudestow; other B manuscripts have Kanstow. nouȝte excuse þe · as dede þe Kynge & other
Þat þow toke to þi bylyf · to clothes and to sustenance
AsL.20.8: LCrM read As; most B manuscripts have And. Among C manuscripts, PEcRcMcVcAcQScZNc also read As here. by techynge & by tellynge · of spiritus temperancie
And þow nome namore · þan nede þe tauȝte
And nede ne hath no lawe · ne neure shal falle in dette
For þre thynges he taketh · his lyf forto saue
That is mete whan men hym werneth · & he no moneye weldeth
fol. 87vI
Ne wyght none wil ben his borwe · ne wedde hath none to legge
And he cauȝte in þat cas · & come þere-to by sleighte
He synneth nouȝte sothelich · þat so wynneth his fode
And þough he come so to a clothe · and can no better cheuysaunce
Nede anon-riȝte · nymeth hym vnder meynpryse
And if hym lyst for to lape · þe lawe of kynde wolde
That he dronke at eche diche · ar he for thurste deyde
So nede at grete nede · may nymen as for his owne
Wyth-oute conseille of conscience · or cardynale vertues
So þat he suwe & saue · spiritus temperancie
For is no vertue by fer to spiritus temperancie
Neither spiritus iusticie · ne spiritus fortitudinis
For spiritus fortitudinis · forfaiteth ful oft
He shal do more þan mesure · many tyme & ofte
And bete men ouer bitter · and somme of hem to litel
And greue men gretter · þan goode faith it wolde
And spiritus iusticie  shal iuggen wolhe nolhe
After þe kynges conseille · & þe comune lyke
And spiritus prudencie · in many a poynte shal faille
Of þat he weneth wolde falle · if his wytte ne were
Wenynge is no wysdome · ne wyse ymagynacioun
Homo proponit & deus disponit · & gouerneth alle good vertues
Ac nede is next hym · for anon he meketh
And as low as a lombe · for lakkyng of þat hym nedeth
Wyse men forsoke wele · for þey wolde be nedy
And woneden in wildernesse · & wolde nouȝte be riche
And god al his grete ioye · gostliche he left
And cam & toke mankynde · and bycam nedy
So nedy he was as seyth þe boke · in many sondry places
Þat he seyde in his sorwe · on þe selue Rode
Bothe fox & foule · may fleighe to hole & crepe
And þe fisshe hath fyn · to flete with to reste
Þere nede hath ynome me · þat I mote nede abydeL.20.45: The letter <a> was squeezed into the space left as a word break by the original scribe in response to a partially erased corrector's <+> in the left margin.
And suffre sorwes ful sowre · þat shal to ioye tourne
For-þi be nouȝte abasshed · to byde and to be nedy
Syth he þat wrouȝte al þe worlde · was wilfullich nedy
Ne neuer none so nedy · ne pouerere deyde
Whan nede had vndernome me þus · anon I felle aslepe
And mette ful merueillously · þat in mannes forme
Antecryst cam þanne · and al þe croppe of treuthe
Torned it vp-so-doune · and ouertilte þe rote
And fals sprynge & sprede · & spede mennes nedes
In eche a contre þere he cam · he cutte awey treuthe
And gert gyle growe þere · as he a god were
fol. 88rI
L.20.57ff.: This leaf, the last of quire 11, and the first leaf of the final quire are quite faded, though entirely legible, probably reflecting some damage while the manuscript was unbound. Freres folwed þat fende · for he ȝaf hem copes
And religiouse reuerenced hym · and rongen here belles
And al þe couent forth cam · to welcome þat tyraunt
And alle hise · as wel as hym · saue onlich folis
Which folis were wel leuer to ...?...deye þan to lyue
Lengore sith lenten  was so rebuked
And a fals fende antecriste · ouer alle folke regned
And þat were mylde men & holy · þat no myschief dredden
Defyed al falsenesse · and folke þat it vsed
And what Kynge þat hem conforted · knowynge hem any whileL.20.66: A largely erased corrector's <+> appears to the left of the following line. There is no evidence of error or of a correction in that line, but it is possible that he any in this line is written over an erasure. Kane-Donaldson emend conjecturally to hir gile, based on the C variants and alpha's hem/hym gyle. Cf. the note to L.12.123.
L.20.67: The corrector's mark is largely erased and somewhat easier to see in the manuscript than in the color image. See the note to the preceding line. They cursed and her conseille · were it clerke or lewed
Antecriste hadde thus sone · hundredes at his banere
And Pryde it bare · boldely aboute
With a lorde þat lyueth · after lykynge of body
That cam aȝein conscience · þat kepere was & gyoure
Ouer kynde ...crystene · and cardynale vertues
I conseille quod conscience þo · cometh with me ȝe foles
In-to vnyte holy cherche · and holde we vs there
And crye we to kynde · þat he come & defende vs
Foles · fro þis fendes lymes · for Piers loue þe plowman
And crye we to alle þe comune / þat þei come to vnite
And þere abide and bikere · aȝein beliales children
Kynd conscience þo herde · and cam out of þe planetes
And sent forth his foreioures feures and fluxes
Coughes and cardiacles · crampes and tothaches
Rewmes & radegoundes · and roynouse scalles
Byles and bocches · and brennyng agues
Frenesyes & foule yueles · forageres of kynde
Hadde yprykked and prayed polles of peple
Þat largelich a legioun · leseL.20.86: L alone reads lese (R has lose); most other B manuscripts have loren or losten. her lyf sone
There was harrow and help · here cometh kyndeL.20.87: In the right margin are some dark brown pen strokes and evidence of something scraped.
With deth þat is dredful · to vndone vs alle
The lorde that lyued after lust · tho alowde cryde
After ....conforte a knyghte · to come and bere his banere
Alarme alarme quod þat lorde eche lyf kepe his owne
And þanne mette þis men · ar mynstralles myȝte pipe
And ar heraudes of armes · hadden descreued lordes
Elde þe hore · he was in þe vauntwarde
And bare þe banere bifor deth · by riȝte he it claymed
Kynde come after · with many kene sores
As pokkes and pestilences · and moche poeple shente ·
fol. 88vI
L.20.98ff.: This page, though pale, looks like the original scribe's usual script. A streak of damage has affected the first words of the first three lines, but they are readable. So kynde þorw corupciouns · kulled ful manye
Deth cam dryuendeL.20.99: LRF have the -ende form of the present participle; most other B witnesses read dryuynge. See the Linguistic Description § III. after · and al to doust passhed
Kynges & Knyȝtes · kayseres and popes
Lered ne lewed · he let no man stonde
That he hitte euene · þat euere stired after
Many a louely lady · and lemmanes of knyghtes
Swouned and swelted · for sorwe of dethes dyntes
Conscience of his curteisye · to kynde he bisouȝte
To cesse & ..suffre · and see where þei wolde
Leue pryde pryuely · and be parfite cristene
And kynde cessed tho · to se þe peple amende
Fortune gan flateren thenne · þo fewe þat were alyue
And byhight hem longe lyf · and lecherye he sent
Amonges al manere men · wedded & vnwedded
And gadered a gret hoste · al agayne conscience
This lecherye leyde on · with a laughyng chiere
And with pryue speche · and peynted wordes
And armed hym in ydelnesse · and in hiegh berynge
He bare a bowe in his hande · and manye blody arwes
Weren fethered with faire biheste · and many a false truthe
WitL.20.118: The corrector's <+> beside the following line probably refers to the scribe's rendering of Wit for Wiþ here. The corrector marked the same form at L.5.612. It was not corrected either place. his vntydy tales · he tened ful ofte
Conscience and his compaignye · of holicherche þe techeres
Thanne cam coueityse · and caste how he myȝte
Ouercome conscience · and cardynal vertues
And armed hym in auaryce · and hungriliche lyued
His wepne was al wiles · to wynnen & to hyden
With glosynges and with gabbynges · he gyled þe peple
Symonye hym sent · to assaille conscience
And preched to þe peple · and prelates þei hem maden
To holden with antecryste · her temperaltes to saue
And come to þe kynges conseille · as a kene baroun
And kneled to conscience in courte afor hem alle
And gart gode feith flee · and fals to abide
And boldeliche bar adown · with many a briȝte noble
Moche of þe witte and wisdome · of westmynster halle
He iugged til a iustice · and iusted in his ere
And ouertilte al his treuthe · with take þis vp amendement
And to þe arches in haste · he ȝede anone after
And torned Ciuile in-to symonye · and sitthe he toke þe official
For a mentel of menyuere · he made lele matrimonye
Departen ar deth cam · & deuos shupte
Allas quod conscience & cried þo · wolde criste of his grace
That Coueitise were cristeneL.20.139: The last three letters of the catchword have faded or been partially erased.
fol. 89rI
That coueityse were cristene · þat is so kene a fiȝter
And bolde and bidyng · while his bagge lasteth
And þanne lowgh lyf · and leet dagge his clothes
And armed hym in haste · in harlotes wordes
And helde holynesse a iape · and hendenesse a wastour
And lete leute a cherle · and lyer a fre man ·
Conscience and conseille · he counted it aL.20.146: LHmMW alone have a. folye ·
Thus relyed lyf · for a litel fortune
And pryked forth with pryde preyseth he no vertue
AL.20.149: A probably was written for "he." careth nouȝte how kynde slow · and shal come atte laste
And culle alle erthely creatureL.20.150: LYR alone have the singular form creature; all other B manuscripts have the plural. · saue conscience one
Lyf leep asyde · and lauȝte hym a lemman
Heel & I quod he · and hieghnesse of herte
Shal do þe nouȝte drede · noyther deth ne elde
And to forȝete sorwe · and ȝyue nouȝte of synne
This lyked lyf · and his lemman fortune
And geten in her glorie · a gadelyng atte laste
One þat moche wo wrouȝte · sleuthe was his name
Sleuthe wex wonder ȝerne · and sone was of age
And wedded one wanhope · a wenche of þe stuwes
Her syre was a sysour · þat neure swore treuthe
One Thomme two tonge · ateynte at vch a queste
This sleuthe was war of werre · and a slynge made
And threwe drede of dyspayre · a dozein myle aboute
For care conscience þo · cryed vpon elde
And bad hym fonde to fyȝte · and afere wanhope
And elde hent good hope · and hastilich he shifte hym
And wayued awey wanhope · and with lyf he fyȝteth
And lyf fleigh for fere to fysyke after helpe
And bisouȝte hym of socoure · and of his salue hadde
And gaf hym golde good woon · þat gladded his herte
And þei gyuen hym agayne a glasen houve
Lyf leued þat lechecrafte · lette shulde elde
And dryuen awey deth · with dyas and dragges
And elde auntred hym on lyf · and atte laste he hitte
A Fisicien with a forred hood · þat he fel in a palsye
And þere deyed þat doctour · ar thre dayes after
Now I see seyde lyf · þat surgerye ne Fisyke
May nouȝte a myte auaille · to medle aȝein elde
And in hope of his hele · gode herte he hente
And rode so to reuel · a ryche place and a merye
fol. 89vI
L.20.181ff.: This page is extremely faded. The companye of conforte · men cleped it sumtyme
And elde anone after me · and ouer myne heed ȝede
And made me balled bifore · and bare on þe croune
So harde he ȝede ouer myn hed · it wil be seen eure
Sire euel ytauȝte elde quod I · vnhende go with the
Sith whanne was þe way · ouer menL.20.186: L alone reads men; all other B manuscripts have mennes. hedes
Haddestow be hende quod I · þow woldest haue asked leue
Ȝe leue lordeyne quod he · and leyde on me with age
And hitte me vnder þe ere · vnethe may ich here
He buffeted me aboute þe mouthe · & bett out my tethe
And gyued me in goutes · I may nouȝte go at large
And of þe wo þat I was in · my wyf had reuthe
And wisshed ful witterly · þat I were in heuene
For þe lyme þat she loued me fore · and leef was to fele
On nyȝtes namely · whan we naked were
I ne myght in no manere · maken it at hir wille
So elde and she sothly · hadden it forbeten
And as I seet in þis sorwe · I say how kynde passed
And deth drowgh niegh me · for drede gan I quake
And cried to kynde · out of care me brynge
Loo elde þe hoore · hath me biseye
Awreke me if ȝowre wille be · for I wolde ben hennes
Ȝif þow wilt ben ywroken · wende in-to vnite
And holde þe þere eure · tyl I sende for þe
And loke þow conne somme crafte ar þow come þennes
Conseille me kynde quod I · what crafte is best to lerne
L.20.207: The scribe skipped a line as for a strophe break, but the rubricator failed to supply a paraph. A few other B manuscripts, including RW, supply a parasign at this point.Lerne to loue quod kynde · & leue of alle othre
How shal I come to catel so · to clothe me and to fede
And þow loue lelly quod he · lakke shal þe neure
Mete ne wordly wede · whil þi lyf lasteth
And þere by conseille of kynde · I comsed to rowme
Thorw contricioun & confessioun · tyl I cam to vnite
And þere was conscience constable · cristene to saue
And biseged sothly · with seuene grete gyauntz
Þat with Antecriste helden · hard aȝein conscience
Sleuth with his slynge · an hard saut he made
Proude prestes come with hym moo þan a thousand
In paltokes & pyked shoes · & pisseres longe knyues
Comen aȝein conscience · with coueityse þei helden
fol. 90rI
L.20.220: The rubricating scribe failed to erase the <cc> guide from the left margin. By Marie quod a mansed preste · of þe marche of yrlonde
I counte namore conscience · bi so I cacche syluer
Than I do to drynke · a drauȝte of good ale
And so seide sexty of þe same · contreye
And shoten aȝein with shotte · many a shef of othes
And brode hoked arwes · goddes herte & his nayles
And hadden almost vnyte · and holynesse adowne
Conscience cryed helpe · clergye or ellis I falle
Thorw inparfit prestes · and prelates of holicherche
Freres herden hym crye · and comen hym to helpe
Ac for þei couth nouȝte wel her craft · conscience forsoke hem
Nede neghed tho nere · and conscience he tolde
That þei come for coueityse · to haue cure of soules
And for þei arn poure par-auenture · for patrimoigne hem failleth
Thei wil flatre to fare wel · folke þat ben richeL.20.234: There is no evidence of correction within the line, but a corrector's <+> has been erased from the right margin.
And sithen þei chosen chele · and cheytifteL.20.235: LWR read cheytifte; most B witnesses have chaytyf. pouerte
Lat hem chewe as þei chese · and charge hem with no cure
     id est sepius
For lomerL.20.237: The gloss id est sepius is written over lomer. he lyeth · þat lyflode mote begge
Þan he þat laboureth for lyflode · & leneth it beggeres
And sithen Freres forsoke · þe felicite of erthe
Lat hem be as beggeres · or lyue by angeles fode
Conscience of þis conseille þo · comsed for to laughe
And curteilichcurtei[s]lichL.20.242: A marginal corrector's <+> notes the scribe's omission of <s> from curteislich. conforted hem · and called in alle freres
And seide sires sothly · welcome be ȝe alle
To vnite and holicherche · ac on thyng I ȝow preye
Holdeth ȝow in vnyte · and haueth none envye
To lered ne to lewed · but lyueth after ȝowre rewle
And I wil be ȝowre borghe · ȝe shal haue bred and clothes
And other necessaries anowe · ȝow shal no thyng faille
With þat ȝe leue logyk · and lerneth for to louye
For loue laft þei lordship · bothe londe and scole
Frere Fraunceys and Dominyk · for loue to ben holy
And if ȝe coueyteth cure · kynde wil ȝow teche
That in mesure god made · alle manere thynges
And sette it at a certeyne · and at a syker noumbre
And nempned names newe · and noumbred þe sterres
Qui numerat multitudinem stellarum · & omnibus eis &c
Kynges & knyghtes þat kepen and defenden
Han officers vnder hem · and vch of hem certeyne
And if þei men to werre · þei write hem in noumbre
Wil no tresorere hem paye · trauaille þei neure so sore
Alle other in bataille · ben yholde bribours
fol. 90vI
Pilours and pykehernois · in eche a place ycursed
Monkes and monyals · and alle men of Religioun
Her ordre and her reule wil · to han a certeyne noumbre
Of lewed and of lered · þe lawe wol and axeth
A certeyn for a certeyne · saue onelich of freres
For-þi quod conscience by cryst · kynde witte me telleth
It is wikked to wage ȝow · ȝe wexeth out of noumbre
Heuene hath euene noumbre · and helle is with-out noumbre
For-þi I wolde witterly · þat ȝe were in þe Registre
And ȝowre noumbre vndre notarie sygne · & noyther mo ne lasse
Enuye herd þis · and heet freres to go to scole
And lerne logyk and lawe · and eke contemplacioun
And preche men of plato · and preue it by seneca
Þat alle þinges vnder heuene · ouȝte to ben in comune
And ȝit he lyeth as I leue · þat to þe lewed so precheth
For god made to men a lawe · and Moyses it tauȝte
Non concupisces rem proximi tui
And euele is þis yholde · in parisches of engelonde
For parsones and parishprestesparish prestes þat shulde þe peple shryue
Ben curatoures called · to knowe and to hele
Alle þat ben her parisshiens · penaunce to enioigne
And shulden be ashamed in her shrifte · ac shame maketh hem wende
And fleen to þe freres · as fals folke to westmynstre
That borweth and bereth it þider · and þanne biddeth frendes
Ȝerne of forȝifnesse · or lenger ȝeres leueL.20.286: LR alone read leue (or perhaps lene); most other B manuscripts have loone.
Ac whil he is in westmynstre · he wil be bifore
And make hym merye with other mennes goodis
And so it fareth with moche folke · þat to þe freres shryueth
As sysours and excecutours · þei wil þeue[ȝeue þe] freresL.20.290: The b-verse of most B manuscripts reads þei wol (or schul) ȝyue þe freres. The original scribe wrote þe before freres. A corrector's <+> appears in the left margin, and þe was later changed to þeue by a supralinear addition, although the corrector presumably meant yeue þe. The confusion of <y> and <þ> is not characteristic of this scribe. See the note to L.7.59.
A parcel to preye for hem · & make hem-self myrye
With þe residue and þe remenaunt · þat other men biswonke
And suffre þe ded in dette · to þe day of dome
Enuye herfore · hated conscience
And freres to philosofye · he fonde hem to scole
The while coueytise and vnkyndenesse · conscience assailled
In vnite holycherche · conscience helde hym
And made pees porter · to pynne þe ȝates
Of alle taletellers · and tyterers in ydel
Ypocrisye and he · an hard saut þei made
Ypocrysie atte ȝate · hard gan fiȝte
And wounded wel wykkedly · many wise techer
Þat with conscience acorded · and cardinale vertues
fol. 91rI
Conscience called a leche · þat coude wel shryue
Go salue þo þat syke ben · þorw synne ywounded
Shrifte shope sharpe salue · and made men do penaunce
For her mysdedes þat þei wrouȝte hadden
And þat piers were payed · redde quod debes
Somme lyked nouȝte þis leche · and lettres þei sent
Ȝif any surgien were þe seggeL.20.310: A later hand has lined through the second <g> of segge. The manuscripts differ considerably here. Alpha and Cr have in þe sege, but most beta witnesses have þe segge. At first glance the second <g> may appear to have been damaged by a worm hole. · þat softer couth plastre
Sire lief to lyue in leccherye · lay þere and groned
For fastyng of a fryday · he ferde as he wolde deye
Ther is a surgiene in þis sege · þat soft can handle
And more of phisyke bi fer · and fairer he plastreth
One frere flaterere is phisiciene and surgiene
Quod contricioun to conscience · do hym come to vnyte
For here is many a man herte · þorw ypocrisie
We han no nede quod conscience · I wote no better leche
Than persoun or parissh prest · penytancere or bisshop ·
Saue Piers þe plowman · þat hath powere ouer hem alle
And indulgence may do · but if dette lette it
I may wel suffre seyde conscience · syn ȝe desiren
That frere flaterer be fette · and phisike ȝow syke
The Frere her-of herde · and hyed faste
To a lorde for a lettre · leue to haue to curen
As a curatour he were · and cam with his lettres
Baldly to þe bisshop · & his brief hadde
In contrees þere he come in · confessiouns to here
And cam þere conscience was · and knokked atte ȝate
Pees vnpynned it · was porter of vnyte
And in haste asked · what his wille were
In faith quod þis frere · for profit and for helthe
Carpe I wolde with contricioun · & þerfore come I hider
He is sike seide pees · and so ar many other
Ypocrisie hath herte hem · ful harde is if þei keure
I am a surgien seide þe segge · and salues can make
Conscience knoweth me wel · and what I can do bothe
I preye þe quod pees þo · ar þow passe ferther
What hattestow I preye þe · hele nouȝte þi name
Certes seyde his felow sire penetrans domos
Ȝe go þi gate quod pees · bi god for al þi phisyk
But þow conne somme crafte · þow comest nouȝt her-Inne
I knewe such one ones · nouȝte eighte wynter passed
Come in þus ycoped · at a courte þere I dwelt
fol. 91vI
And was my lordes leche · & my ladyes bothe
And at þe last þis limitour · þo my lorde was out
He salued so owre wommen · til somme were with childe
Hende speche het pees · opene þe ȝates
Late in þe frere and his felawe · and make hem faire chere
He may se and here · so it may bifalle
That lyf þorw his lore shal leue coueityse
And be adradde of deth · and with-drawe hymL.20.352: The ink above hym is offset from the following leaf. fram pryde
And acorde with conscience · and kisse her either other
Thus thorw hende speche entred þe frere
And cam in to conscience · and curteisly hym grette
Þow art welcome quod conscience canstow hele þe syke
Here is contricioun quod conscience · my cosyn ywounded
Conforte hym quod conscience and take kepe to his sores
The plastres of þe persoun · and poudres biten to sore
He lat hem ligge ouerlonge · and loth is to chaunge hem
Fro lenten to lenten · he lat his plastres bite
That is ouerlonge quod this limitour · I leue I shal amende it
And goth and gropeth contricioun · and gaf hym a plastre
Of a pryue payement · and I shal praye for ȝow
For alle þat ȝe ben holde to · al my lyf-tyme
And make ȝow my lady · in masse and in matynes
As freres of owre fraternite · for a litel syluer
Thus he goth and gadereth · and gloseth þere he shryueth
Tyl contricioun hadde clene forȝeten · to crye & to wepe
And wake for his wykked werkes · as he was wont to done
For confort of his confessour · contricioun he lafte
Þat is þe souereynest salue · for alkyn synnes
Sleuth seigh þat · and so did pryde
And come with a kene wille · conscience to assaille
Conscience cryde eft · and bad clergye help hym
And also contricioun · forto kepe þe ȝate
He lith and dremeth · seyde pees · and so do many other
The Frere with his phisik · þis folke hath enchaunted
And plastred hem so esyly · þei drede no synne
Bi cryste quod conscience þo · I wil bicome a pilgryme
And walken as wyde · as al þe wordle lasteth
To seke Piers þe plowman · þat pryde may destruye
And þat freres hadde a fyndyng · þat for nede flateren
And contrepleteth me conscience · now kynde me auenge
And sende me happe and hele · til I haue piers þe plowman
passus ijus de Dobest
And sitthe he gradde after grace · til I gan awakeL.20.386: In the left margin below the final line of text the scribe has written passus ijus de Dobest as an (ignored) instruction for the rubricator. It has been cropped, lacking initial pass- or explicit pass-.

Explicit hic dialogus petri plowman