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called an avaritious man or an chinch, as well should and brought into great personal danger ; but, partly ye keep you and govern you in such wise, that men through accidental circumstances, and partly through call you not fool-large; therefore, saith Tullius, The goods of thine house ne should not ben hid ne kept so close, but that they might ben opened by pity and debonnairety, that is to sayen, to give 'em part that han great need ; ne they goods shoulden not ben so open to be every man's goods.
Afterward, in getting of your riches, and in using of 'em, ye shulen alway have three things in your heart, that is to say, our Lord God, conscience, and good name. First ye shulen have God in your heart, and for no riches ye shulen do nothing which may in any manner displease God that is your creator and maker ; for, after the word of Solomon, it is better to have a little good, with love of God, than to have muckle good and lese the love of his Lord God ; and the prophet saith, that better it is to ben a good man and have little good and treasure, than to be holden 2 shrew and have great riches. And yet I say furthermore, that ye shulden always do your business to get your riches, so that ye get 'em with a good conscience. And the apostle saith, that there nis thing in this world, of which we shulden have so great joy, as when our conscience beareth us good witness; and the wise man saith, The substance of a man is full good when sin is not in a man's conscience. Afterward, in getting of your riches and in using of 'em, ye must have great business and great diligence that your good name be alway kept and conserved; for Solomon saith, that better it is and more it availeth a man to have a good name than for to have great riches; and therefore he saith in another place, Do great diligence (saith he) in keeping of thy friends and of thy good name, for it shall longer abide with
Wickliffe thee than any treasure, be it never so precious; and certainly he should not be called a gentleman that, the friendship of the Duke of Lancaster (the friend after God and good conscience all things left, ne doth of Chaucer, and probably also of Gower), he escaped his diligence and business to keepen his good name ; every danger, and at last died in a quiet country and Cassiodore saith, that it is a sign of a gentle rectory, though not before he had been compelled heart, when a man loveth and desireth to have a good name. * * And he that trusteth him so muckle in his good conscience, that he despiseth or setteth at nought his good name or los, and recketh not though he kept not his good name, nis but a cruel churl.
JOHN WICKLIFFE (1324-1384) was a learned ecclesiastic and professor of theology in Baliol College, Oxford, where, soon after the year 1372, he began to challenge certain doctrines and practices of the Romish church, which for ages had held unquestioned sway in England. The mental capacity and vigour requisite for this purpose, must have been of a very uncommon kind; and Wickliffe will ever, accordingly, be considered as one of the greatest names in our history. In contending against the Romish doctrines and the papal power, and in defending himself against the vengeance of the ecclesiastical courts, he produced many controversial works, some of which were in English. But his greatest work, and that which was qualified to be
Chair of Wickliffe. most effectual in reforming the faith of his country
to retract some of his reputed heresies. Upwards of men, was a translation of the Old and New Testa
forty years after his death, in consequence of a dements, which he executed in his latter years, with the assistance of a few friends, and which, though
but the announcement has been made, that Mr Forshall and taken from the Latin medium, instead of the origi- Mr
Mr Madden, both of the British Museum, are now engaged in nal Hebrew and Greek, and though performed in a preparing an edition, which is to issue from the University timid spirit with regard to idioms, is a valuable press of Oxford. Mr Baber, after much research, has come to relic of the age, both in a literary and theological the conclusion, that no English translation of the entire Bible view.* Wickliffe was several times cited for heresy, preceded that of Wickliffe. (See “Historical Account of the
Saxon and English versions of the Scriptures previous to the * Wickliffe's translation of the New Testament has been opening of the fifteenth century," prefixed by Mr Baber to twice printed. by Mr Lewis in 1731, and Mr Baber in 1810. his edition of the New Testament, p. lxviii.) Portions of it His version of the Old Testament still remains in manuscript ; had, however, been translated at various times.
cree of the Council of Constance, his bones were For he hath behulden the mekenesse of his handdisinterred and burnt, and the ashes thrown into a mayden: for lo for this alle generatiouns schulen seye brook. “This brook,” says Fuller, the church his that I ain blessid. torian, in a passage which brings quaintness to the For he that is mighti hath don to me grete thingis, borders of sublimity,“ hath conveyed his ashes into and his name is holy. Avon, Avon into Severn, Severn into the narrow And his mercy is fro kyndrede into kyndredis to seas, they into the main ocean : and thus the ashes men that dreden him. of Wickliffe are the emblem of his doctrine, which lle hath made myght in his arm, he scatteride is now dispersed all the world over."
proude men with the thoughte of his herte. As a specimen of the language of Wickliffe, his He sette doun myghty men fro seete, and enhauntranslation of that portion of Scripture which con side meke men. He hath fulfillid hungry men with tains the Magnificat, may be presented
goodis, and he has left riche men voide.
He heuynge mynde of his mercy took up Israel [The Magnificat.]
his child. And Marye seyde, My soul magnifieth the Lord. As he hath spokun to ourc fadris, to Abraham, and And my spiryt hath gladid in God myn helthe. to his seed into worlds.
FROM 1400 TO 1558.
| walking in the adjacent garden. This lady, a daugh
ter of the Earl of Somerset, was afterwards married ZHILE such to the young king, whom she accompanied to Scotminds as Chaucer's take shape, in some measure, from the state of learnsing and civili
sation which may prevail in their time, it is very clear that they are
never altogether created or brought into exercise by such circumstances. The rise of such men is the accident of nature, and whole ages may pass without producing them. From the death of Chaucer in 1400, nearly two hundred years elapsed in England, before any poet comparable to him arose, and yet those two centuries were more enlightened than the times of Chaucer. This long period, however, produced several poets not destitute of merit.
JAMES I. OF SCOTLAND. Among these was JAMES I. of Scotland, whose mind and its productions, notwithstanding his being a native of that country, must be considered as of English growth. James had been taken prisoner in his boyhood by Henry IV. of England, and spent the nineteen years preceding 1424 in that country, where he was instructed in all the learning and polite ac
James I. of Scotland. complishments of the age, and appears, in particular, to have carefully studied the writings of Chaucer. land. While in possession of his kingdom, he is The only certain production of this young sovereign said to have written several poems descriptive of is a long poem, called The King's Quhair, or Book, humorous rustic scenes; but these cannot be cerin which he describes the circumstances of an attach- tainly traced to him. He was assassinated at Perth ment which he formed, while a prisoner in Windsor in the year 1437. Castle, to a young English princess whom he sawl The King's Quhair contains poetry superior to
any besides that of Chaucer, produced in England Of her array the forın if I shall write, before the reign of Elizabeth—as will be testified by | Towards her golden hair and rich attire, the following verses :
In fretwise couchitl with pearlis white
And great balas2 leaming as the fire, [James I., a Prisoner in Windsor, first secs Lady Jane
With mony ane emeraut and fair sapphire;
And on her head a chaplet fresh of hue,
Of plumis parted red, and white, and blue. Despaired of all joy and remedy,
Full of quaking spangis bright as gold, For-tired of my thought, and woe-begone,
Forged of shape like to the amorets, And to the window gan I walk in hyl
So new, so fresh, so pleasant to behold, To see the world and folk that went forbye, ?
The plumis eke like to the flower jonets, 4 As, for the time, though I of mirthis food
And other of shape, like to the flower jonets ; Might have no more, to look it did me good.
And above all this, there was, well I wot, Now was there made, fast by the towris wall,
Beauty enough to make a world to doat. A garden fair; and in the corners set
About her neck, white as the fire amail,5 Ane arbour green, with wandis long and small
| A goodly chain of small orfevory, Railed about, and so with trees set Was all the place, and hawthorn hedges knet,
Whereby there hung a ruby, without fail,
Like to ane heart shapen verily, That lyf was none walking there forbye,
That as a spark of low, so wantonly That might within scarce any wight espy
Seemed burning upon her white throat, So thick the boughis and the leavis green
Now if there was good party,8 God it wot. Beshaded all the alleys that there were,
And for to walk that fresh May's morrow, And mids of every arbour might be seen
Ane hook she had upon her tissue white, The sharpe greene sweete juniper,
That goodlier had not been seen to-forow,9 Growing so fair with branches here and there,
As I suppose ; and girt she was alite, 10 That as it seemed to a lyf without,
Thus halflings loose for haste, to such delight The boughis spread the arbour all about.
It was to see her youth in goodlihede, And on the smalle greene twistis3 sat,
That for rudeness to speak thereof I dread. The little sweete nightingale, and sung
In her was youth, beauty, with humble aport, So loud and clear, the hymnis consecrat
Bounty, richess, and womanly feature, Of lovis use, now soft, now loud among,
God better wot than my pen can report : That all the gardens and the wallis rung
Wisdom, largess, estate, and cunning ll sure, Right of their song.
In every point so guided her measure, - Cast I down mine eyes again,
In word, in deed, in shape, in countenance,
That nature might no more her child avance !
And when she walked had a little thraw
Under the sweete greene boughis bent, For which sudden abate, anon astart, 4
| Her fair fresh face, as white as any snaw, The blood of all my body to my heart.
She turned has, and furth her wayis went ;
But tho began mine aches and torment, And though I stood abasit tho a lite,5
To see her part and follow I na might;
Methought the day was turned into night.
JOHN THE CHAPLAIN, THOMAS OCCLEVE, a lawyer, There was no token in her sweete face.
and John LYDGATE, were the chief immediate folAnd in my head I drew right hastily,
lowers of Chaucer and Gower. The performances And eftesoons I leant it out again,
of the two first are of little account. Lydgate, who And saw her walk that very womanly,
was a monk of Bury, flourished about the year 1430. With no wight mo', but only women twain.
His poetical compositions range over a great variety Then gan I study in myself, and sayn,6
of styles. “His muse," says Warton, “ was of uniAh, sweet! are ye a worldly creature,
versal access; and he was not only the poet of the Or heavenly thing in likeness of nature ?
monastery, but of the world in general. If a dis
guising was intended by the company of goldsmiths, Or are ye god Capidis own princess,
a mask before his majesty at Eltham, a Maygame And comin are to loose me out of band ?
for the sheriff's and aldermen of London, a mumming Or are ye rery Nature the goddess,
before the Lord Mayor, a procession of pageants Tkat hare depainted with your heavenly hand,
from the Creation for the festival of Corpus Christi, This garden full of flowers as they stand ?
or a carol for the Coronation, Lydgate was consulted, What shall I think, alas ! what reverence
| and gave the poetry.” The principal works of this Shall I mister7 unto your excellence ?
versatile writer are entitled, "The History of Thebes, If ye a goddess be, and that ye like
The Fall of Princes, and The Destruction of Troy. He To do me pain, I may it not astart:8
had travelled in France and Italy, and studied the If ye be warldly wight, that doth me sike, 9
poetry of those countries; and though his own writWhy list 10 God make you so, my dearest heart, To do a secly 1l prisoner this smart,
1 Inlaid like fretwork. A kind of precious stone. That loves you all, and wot of nought but wo?
A kind of lily. It is conjectured that And therefore mercy, sweet ! sin' it is so.' * sono the royal poet may here allude covertly to the name of his mis
tress, which, in the diminutive, was Janet or Jonet.-ThomFlaste. ? Past. 3 Twigs. Went and came.
son's Edition of King's Quhair. Ayr, 1924. 5 Confounded for a little while.
7 Minister. 5 Enamel Gold work. 7 Flame. 8 Match. * Fly. Makes me sigh. 10 Pleased. n Wretched. Before. 10 Slightly. 11 Knowledge.
ings contain only a few good passages, he is allowed | One bade me buy a hood to cover my head ;
There was harp, pipe, and minstrelsy; few who acquired any tincture of letters in that age.
Yea by cock ! nay by cock! some began cry; In the words of Mr Warton, “there is great soft
Some sung of Jenkin and Julian for their meed; ness and facility” in the following passage of Lyd But, for lack of money, I might not speed. gate's Destruction of Troy :
Then into Cornhill anon I yode, [Description of a Sylran Retreat.]
Where was much stolen gear among ; Till at the last, among the bowes glaile,
I saw where hung mine owne hood, Of adventure, I caught a pleasant shade;
That I had lost among the throng ; Full smooth, and plain, and lusty for to seen,
To buy my own hood I thought it wrong :
I knew it well, as I did my creed ;
The tarerner took me by the sleeve,
"Sir,' saith he, will you our wine assay ?' That I me laid adown upon the grass,
I answered, “That can not much me griere, Upon a brinke, shortly for to tell,
A penny can do no more than it may ;' Beside the river of a crystal well;
I drank a pint, and for it did pay; And the water, as I reherse can,
Yet, sore a-hungered from thence I yede,
And, wanting money I could not speed, &c.
The reigns of Edward IV., Richard III., and Henry
VII., extending between the years 1461 and 1509, A fugitive poem of Lydgate, called the London Lyck- were barren of true poetry, though there was no penny, is curious for the particulars it gives respect- lack of obscure versifiers. It is remarkable, that ing the city of London in the early part of the this period produced in Scotland a race of genuine fifteenth century. The poet has come to town in poets, who, in the words of Mr Warton, " displayed search of legal redress for some wrong, and visits, in a degree of sentiment and spirit, a command of phrasuccession, the King's Bench, the Court of Common seology, and a fertility of imagination, not to be Pleas, the Court of Chancery, and Westminster found in any English poet since Chaucer and LydHall.
gate." Perhaps the explanation of this seeming
mystery is, that the influences which operated upon The London Lyckpenny.
Chaucer a century before, were only now coming Within the hall, neither rich, nor yet poor
with their full force upon the less favourably situWould do for me ought, although I should die : ated nation which dwelt north of the Tweed. OverWhich seeing, I gat me out of the door,
looking some obscurer names, those of Henryson, Where Flemings began on me for to cry,
Dunbar, and Douglas, are to be mentioned with Master, what will you copenor buy!
peculiar respect. Fine felt hats? or spectacles to read ? Lay down your silver, and here you may speed.'
ROBERT HENRYSON. Then to Westminster gate I presently went,
Of this poet there are no personal memorials, When the sun was at high prime :
except that he was a schoolmaster at Dunfermline, Cooks to me they took good intent. 2
and died some time before 1508. His principal poem And proffered me bread, with ale, and wine, is The Testament of Cresscid, being a sequel to Ribs of beef, both fat and full fine;
Chaucer's romantic poem, Troylus and Cresseide. A fair cloth they gan for to spread,
He wrote a series of fables, thirteen in number, and But, wanting money, I might not be sped.
some miscellaneous poems, chiefly of a moral cha
racter. One of his fables is the common story of Then unto London I did me hie,
the Toucn Mouse and Country Mouse, which he treats Of all the land it beareth the price;
with much humour and characteristic description, Hot peascods ! one began to cry,
and concludes with a beautifully expressed moral. ‘Strawberry ripe, and cherries in the rise !'3
One bade me come near and buy some spice; [Dinner giren by the Town Mouse to the Country Mouse.] Pepper, and saffron they gan me beed ;
* their harboury was tane But, for lack of money, I might not speed.
Intill a spence, where victual was plenty, Then to the Cheap I gan me drawn,
Baith cheese and butter on lang shelves richt hie, Where much people I saw for to stand ;
With fish and flesh enough, baith fresh and salt, One offered me velvet, silk, and lawn,
And pockis full of groats, baith meal and malt. Another he taketh ine by the hand,
After, when they disposit were to dine, Here is Paris thread, the finest in the land !'
Withouten grace they wuishl and went to meat, I never was used to such things, indeed ;
On every dish that cookmen can divine, And, wanting money, I might not speed.
Mutton and beef stricken out in telyies grit; Then went I forth by London Stone, 5
Ane lordis fare thus can they counterfeit, Throughout all Canwick Street :
Except ane thing—they drank the water clear Drapers much cloth me offered anon ;
Instead of wine, but yet they made gude cheer. Then comes me one cried “hot sheep's feet; | With blyth upcast and merry countenance, One cried mackerel, rushes green, another gan greet, The elder sister then spier'd at her guest,
Gif that sho thoucht by reason difference 1 Koopen, (Flem.) is to buy. 2 Took notice; paid attention. Betwixt that chalmer and her sairy2 nest. 8 On the twig.
4 Offer. 6 A fragment of · Yea, dame,' quoth sho, .but how lang will this last?" London Stone is still preserved in Cannon Street, formerly called Canwick, or Candlewick Street.
I Washed. Sorry.
“For evermair, I wait,' and langer too ;'
How, fair sister, cry peep, where'er thou be.'
Of my defence now frae yon cruel beast;
[From the Moral.]
The Garment of Good Ladies.
And work after my will,
Gar make her body till.
Upon her head to wear,
Na deeming should her deir.2
Of chastity so white:
The same should be perfyte.
Lacit with lesum5 love ;
For never to remove.
Well ribbon’d with renown;
Furrit with fine fashioùn.
About her middle meet;
To thole 9 both wind and weit. 10
And her tippet of truth;
Her hals-ribbon of ruth.12
To keep her fra despair :
To hide her fingers fair.
In sign that she not slide ;
I should for her provide.
1 Cause to be made to her shape.
? No opinion should injure her. 3 Shift. 4 Perfect. 5 Lawful.
6 Eyelet holes for lacing her kirtle. Parfilé (French), fringed, or bordered. 8 Each. 9 Endure. 10 Wet. 11 Thinking. 12 Iler neck ribbon of pity.