« ZurückWeiter »
Such is the crueltie of womenkynd,
“Clarin,” said she, “thou seest yond Fayry knight, When they have shaken off the shamefast band, Whom not my valour, but his owne brave mind With which wise Nature did them strongly bynd Subiected hath to my unequall might ! T' obay the heasts of mans well-ruling hand, What right is it, that he should thraldome find That then all rule and reason they withstand For lending life to me a wretch unkind, To purchase a licentions libertie :
That for such good him recompence with ill! But vertuous women wisely understand,
Therefore I cast how I may him unbind, That they were borue to base bumilitie,
And by his freedome get his free goodwill; Unlesse the Heavens them lift to lawfull soveraintie. Yet so, as bound to me he may continue still: Thus there long while continu'd Artegall,
“ Bound unto me; but not with such hard bands Serving proud Radigund with true subiection :
Of strong compulsion and streight violence, However it his noble heart did gall
As now in miserable state he stands; T'obay a womans tyrannous direction,
But with sweet love and sure benevolence, That might have had of life or death election:
Voide of malitious mind or foule offence: But, baving chosen, now he might not chaunge. To which if thou canst win him any way During which time the warlike Amazon,
Without discoverie of my thoughts pretence, Whose wandring fancie after lust did raunge,
Both goodly meede of him it purchase may, Gan cast a secret liking to this captive straunge.
And eke with gratefull service me right well apay, Which long concealing in her covert brest,
" Which that thou mayst the better bring to pass, She chaw'd the cud of lovers carefull plight; Yet could it not so thoroughly digest,
Loe! here this ring, which shall thy warrant bee Being fast fixed in her wounded spright,
And token true to old Eumenias, But it tormented her both day and night:
From time to time, when thou it best shalt see, Yet would she not thereto yeeld free accord
That in and out thou mayst have passage free. To serve the lowly vassall of her might,
Goe now, Clarinda; well thy wits advise, And of her servant make her soverayne lord : [hord. And all thy forces gather unto thee, So great her pride that she such basenesse much ab- Armies of lovely lookes, and specches wise, (entise.”
With which thou canst even love himselle to love So much the greater still her anguish grew, Through stubborne handling of her love-sicke bart; The trustie mayd, conceiving her intent, And still the more she strove it to subdew,
Did with sure promise of her good endevour The more she still augmented her owne smart, Give her great comfort and some harts content : And wyder made the wound of th' hidden dart. So from her parting she thenceforth did labour, At last, when long she struggled had in vaine, By all the meanes she might, to curry favour She gan to stoupe, and her proud mind convert With the Elfin knight, her ladies best beloved : To meeke obeysance of Loves mightie raine, With daily shew of courteous kind behaviour, And him entreat for grace that had procur'd her Even at the marke-white of his hart she roved, paine.
And with wide-glauncing words one day she thus
him proved : Unto herselfe in secret she did call Her nearest handmayd, whom she most did trust, “ Unhappie knight, upon whose bopelesse state And to her said; “ Clarinda, whom of all
Fortune, envying good, hath felly frowned, I trust alive, sith I thee fustred first ;
And cruell Heavens have beapt an heavy fate; Now is the time that I untimely must
I rew that thus thy better dayes are drowned Thereof make tryall, in my greatest need!
Iu sad despaire, and all thy senses swowned It is so hapned that the Heavens uniust,
In stupid sorow, sith thy juster merit Spighting my happie freedome, have agreed
Might else bave with felicitie bene crowned : To thrall my looser life, or my last bale to breed.” | Looke up at last, and wake thy dulled spirit (rit.” With that she turn'd her head, as halfe abashed,
To thinke how this long death thou mightest disinheTo hide the blush which in her visage rose And through her eyes like sudden lightning Hashed, Much did he marvell at her uncouth speach, Decking her cheeke with a vermilion rose:
Whose hidden drift he could not well perceive; But soone she did her countenance compose,
And gan to doubt least she him sought t' appeach And, to her turning, thus began againe;
Of treason, or some guilefull traine did weave, “ This griefes deepe wound I would to thee disclose, Through which she might his wretched life bereave: Thereto compelled through hart-murdring paine;
Both which to barre he with this answere met her; But dread of shame my doubtfull lips doth still re
“ Faire damzell, that with ruth, as I perceare, strainę."
Of my mishaps art mov'd to wish me better,
For such your kind regard I can but rest your detter. “ Ah! my deare dread," said then the fearefull mayd,
“ Yet weet ye well, that to a courage great 1 “Candread of onght your dreadlesse hart withhold, It is no lesse beseeming well to beare That many hath with dread of death dismayd, The storme of Fortunes frowne or Heavens threat, And dare even Deathes most dreadfull face behold? Then in the sunshine of her countenance cleare Say on, my soverayne ladie, and be bold :
Timely to joy and carrie comely cheare: Doth not your handmayds life at your foot lie ?" For though this cloud have now me overcast, Therewith much comforted she gan unfold
Yet doe I not of better times despeyre ; The cause of her conceived maladie;
And though (unlike) they should for ever last, As one that would confesse, yet faine would it denie. Yet in my truthes assurance I rest fixed fast."
* But what so stonie minde," she then replyde, But sayd, that he was obstinate and sterne, “ But if in his owne powre occasion lay,
Scorning her offers and conditions vaine ; Would to his bope a windowe open wyde,
Ne would be taught with any termes to leme And to his fortunes helpe make readie way?” So fond a lesson as to love agaire: “ Unworthy sure," quoth he, “ of better day, Die rather would he in penurious paine, That will not take the offer of good hope,
And his abridged dayes in dolour wast, And eke pursew, if he attaine it may."
Then his foes love or liking entertaine : Which speaches she applying to the scope
His resolution was, both first and last, Of her intent, this further purpose to him shope:
His bodie was her thrall, his hart was frecly plast. " Then why doest not, thou ill-advized man,
Which when the cruell Amazon perceived, Make meanes to win thy libertie forlorne,
She gan to storme, and rage, and rend her gall, And try if thou by faire entreatie can
For very fell despight, which she conceived,
To be so scorned of a base-borne thrall,
Of which she vow'd with many a cursed threat, As that, albe all love of men she scorne,
That she therefore would him ere long forstall. She yet forgets that she of men was kynded : Natblesse, when calmed was her furious heat, And sooth oft seene that proudest barts base love She chang'd that threatfull mood, and mildly gan hath blynded."
entreat: " Certes, Clarinda, not of cancred will,”
“ What now is left, Clarinda? what remaines, Sayd he, “ nor obstinate disdainefull mind,
That we may compasse this our enterprize?
Great shame to lose so long employed paines, I bare forbore this duetie to fulfill : For well I may this weene, by that I fynd,
And greater shame t'abide so great misprize,
With which he dares our offers thus despize : That she a queene, and come of princely kynd, Both worthie is for to be sewd unto,
Yet that his guilt the greater may appeare, Chiefely by him whose life her law doth bynd,
And more my gratious mercie by this wize,
I will awhile with his first folly beare, (neare, And eke of powre her owne doomc to undo, And als' of princely grace to be inclyn'd thereto.
Till thou have tride againe, and tempted him more " But want of meanes hath bene mine onely Ict
“ Say and do all that may hereto prevaile ; From seeking favour where it doth abound;
Leave nought unpromist that may him perswade, Which if I might by your good office get,
Life, freedome, grace, and gifts of great availe, I to yourselfe should rest for ever bound,
With which the gods themselves are mylder made : And ready to deserve what grace I found.”
Thereto adde art, even womens witty trade, She feeling him thus bite upon the bayt,
The art of mightie words that men can charme;
With which in case thou canst him not invade, Yet doubting least his hold was but unsound And not well fastened, would not strike him strayt, Who will not stoupe with good shall be made stoupe
Let him feele hardnesse of thy heavie arme: But drew him on with hope, fit leasure to awayt.
with harme. But foolish mayd, whyles heedlesse of the hooke
“ Some of his diet doe from him withdraw; She thus oft-times was beating off and on,
For I him find to be too proudly fed : Througb slipperie footing fell into the brooke,
Give him more labour, and with streighter law, And there was caught to her confusion :
That he with worke may be forwearied : For, seeking thus to salve the Amazon,
Let him lodge hard, and lie in strawen bed, She wounded was with her deceipts owne dart,
That may pull downe the courage of his pride ; And gan thenceforth to cast affection,
And lay upon him, for his greater dread, Conceived close in her beguiled hart,
Cold yron chaines with which let him be tide; To Artegall, through pittie of his causelesse smart. And let, whatever he desires, be him denide. Yet durst she not disclose her fancies wound, “ When thou hast all this doen, theu bring me newes Ne to himselfe, for doubt of being sdayned, Of his demeane; thenceforth not like a lover, Ne yet to any other wight on ground,
But like a rebell stout, I will him use: For feare ber mistresse shold have knowledge gayn- For I resolve this siege not to give over, But to herselfe it secretly retayned (ed; Till I the conquest of my will recover." Within the closet of her covert brest :
So she departed full of griefe and sdaine, The more thereby her tender hart was payned : Which inly did to great impatience move her: Yet to awayt fit time she weened best,
But the false mayden shortly turn'd againe
There all her subtill nets she did unfold,
So cunningly she wrought her crafts assay,
That both her ladie, and herselfe withall, As she her face had wypt to fresh her blood : And eke the knight attonce she did betray; Tho gan she tell her all that she had donne, (wonne. But most the knight, whom she with guilefull call And all the wayes she sought bis love for to have Did cast for to allure, into her trap to fall,
As a bad nurse, which, fayning to receive Yet in the streightnesse of that captive state
To his owne love his loialtie he saved :
Brought in untimely boure, ere it was sought ; His miserie to be augmented more,
For, after that the utmost date assynde And many yron bands on him to lade;
for his returne she waited had for nought, All which nathlesse she for his love forbore: She gan to cast in her misdoubtfull mynde [fynde. So praying him t'accept her service evermore, A thousand feares, that love-sicke fancies faine to And, more then that, she promist that she would, Sometime she feared least some bard mishap In case she might finde favour in his eye,
Had him misfalne in his adventurous quest; Devize how to enlarge him out of hould.
Sometime least his false foe did him entrap
In traytrous trayne, or had unwares opprest;
Least some new love had him from her possest;
One whyle she blam'd herselfe; another whyle So daily he faire semblant did her shew,
She him condemn'd as trustlesse and untrew: Yet never meant he in his noble mind
And then, her griefe with errour to beguyle, To his owne absent love to be untrew:
She fayn'd to count the time agaiue anew, Ne ever did deceiptfull Clarin find
As if before she had not counted trew: In her false hart his bondage to unbind;
For houres, but dayes; for weekes that passed were, But rather how she mote him faster tye.
She told but moneths, to make them seeme more few; Therefore unto her mistresse most unkind
Yet, when she reckne:) them still drawing neare, She daily told her love he did defye;
Each hour did seeme a moneth, and every moneth And him she told her dame bis freedome did denye.
a yeare. Yet thus much friendship she to him did show,
But, whenas yet she saw him not returne, That his scarse diet somewhat was amended,
She thought to send some one to seeke him out; And his worke lessened, that his love mote grow :
But none she found so fit to serve that turne, Yet to her dame him still she discommended,
As her owne selfe, to ease herselfe of dout. That she with him mote be the more offended.
Now she deriz'd, amongst the warlike rout Thus he long while in thraldome there remayned,
Of errant knights, to seeke her errant knight; Of both beloved well, but little friended;
And then againe resolv'd to hunt him out Untill his owne true love his freedome gayned:
Amongst loose ladies lapped in delight : [spight. Which in another canto will be best contayned.
And then both knights envide, and ladies eke did
She to a window came, that opened west,
Towards which coast her love bis way addrest:
There looking forth shee in her beart did find
Many vain fancies working her unrest;
And sent her winged thoughts more swift then wind
There as she looked long, at last she spide Some men, I wote, will deeme in Artegall
One comming towards her with basty speede; Great weaknesse, and report of him much ill, Well weend she then, ere him sbe plaine descride, For yeelding so himselfe a wretched thrall
That it was one sent from her love indeede: To th' insolent commaund of womens will; Who when he nigh approacht, shee mote arede That all his former praise doth fowly spill : That it was Talus, Artegall his groome: But he the man, that say or doe so dare,
Whereat her hart was fild with hope and drede; Be well adviz'd that he stand stedfast still; Ne would she stay till he in place could come, For never yet was wight so well aware,
But ran to meete hinn forth to know bis tidings But he at first or last was trapt in womens snare.
Even in the dore him meeting, she begun; “ Ah wellaway!” sayd then the yron man,
Not by strong hand compelled thereunto,
But his owne doome, that none can now undoo." Of his ill newes, did inly chill and quake,
“ Sayd I not then," quoth she, “ere-while aright, And stood still mute, as one in great suspence; That this is thinge compacte betwixt you two As if that by his silence he would make
Me to deceive of faith unto me plight, Her rather reade his meaning then himselfe it spake. Since that he was not forst, nor overcome in figlit pis Till she againe thus sayd; “Talus, be bold, With that he gar at large to her dilate And tell whatever it be, good or bad,
The whole discourse of his captivance sad, That from thy tongue thy hearts intent doth hold.” In sort as ye have heard the saine of late: To whom he thus at length; “ The tidings sad, All which when she with hard enduravuce lad That I would hide, will needs I see be rad.
Heard to the end, she was right sore bestad, My lord (your love) by hard mishap doth lie With sodaine stounds of wrath and grief attone; In wretched bondage, wofully bestad.”
Ne wouldi abide, till she had aunswere made; * Ay me," quoth she, “what wicked destinie ! But streight herselfe did dight, and armor don, And is he vanquisht by his tyrant enemy?” And mounting to her steede bad Talus guide her on. “ Not by that tyrant, his intended foe;
So forth she rode uppon her ready way, But by a tyrannesse,” he then replide,
To seeke her knight, as Talus ber did guide : That himn captived hath in haplesse woe.” Sadly she rode, and never word did say "Cease thoa, bad newes-man; badly doest thou hide Nor good nor bad, ne ever lookt aside, Thy maisters shame, in harlots bondage tide; But still right downe; and in her thought did hide The rest myselfe too readily can spell.”
The felnesse of her heart, right fully bent With that in rage she turn d from him aside, To fierce avengement of that womans pride, Forcing in vaine the rest to her to tell;
Which had her lord in her base prison pent, And to her chamber went like solitary cell. And so great honour with so fowle reproch had blent. There she began to make her moanefull plaint So as she thus melancholicke did ride, Against her knight for being so untrew;
Chawing the cud of griefe and inward paine, And him to touch with falshuods fowle attaint, She chaunst to meete toward the eren-tide That all his other honour overthrew.
A knight, that softly paced on the plaine, Oft did she blame herselfe, and often rew,
As if briunselte to solace he were faine: For yeelding to a straungers love so light,
Well shot in yeares he seem'd, and rather bent Whose life and manners strange she never knew; To peace then needlesse trouble to constraine ; And evermore she did him sharpely twight
As well by view of that his vestiment, For breach of faith to her, which he had firmely As by his modest semblant, that no evill ment. plight.
He comming neare gan gently ber salute And then she in ber wrathfull will did cast
With curteous words, in the most comely wize; How to revenge that blot of honour blent,
Who though desirous rather to rest mute,
Yet rather then she kinduesse wonld despize,
She would herselfe displase, so himn requite.
Of things abrode, as next to hand did light, slight: Yet did she not lament with loude alew, (few. And many thiugs demaurd, to which she answerd As women wont, but with deepe sighes and singults
For little lust had she to talke of ought, Like as a wayward childe, whose sounder sleepe Or ought to beare that mote del ghtfull bee; Is broken with some fearefall dreames allright, Her minde was whole possessed of one thought, With froward will doth set himselfe to weepe, That gave none other place. Which when as hee Ne can be stild for all his nurses might,
By outward signes (as well he might) did see, Bat kicks, and squais, and shriekes for fell despight; He list no lenger to use lothfull speach, Now scratching her, and her loose locks misusing, But her besought to take it well in gree, Now seeking darkenesse, and now seeking light, Sith shady datape had dimd the Heavens reach, Then craving sucke, and then the sucke refusing : To lodge with him that night, unles good cause cmSuch was this ladies fit in her loves fond accusing. peach. But when she had with such unquiet fits
The championesse, now seeing night at dore, Herself there close afflicted long in raine,
Was glad to yeeld unto his good request;
Not farre away, but little wide by west,
In seemely wise, as them beseemed best;
Yet Talus after them apace did plie,
That here and there like scattred sheepe they lay.
He to her told the story of that fray, Which she would sure performe betide her weleor wo. And all that treason there intended did bewray. Which when their host perceiv'd, right discontent Wherewith though wondrous wroth, and inly burning In minde he grew, for feare least by that art
To be avenged for so fowle a deede,
Yet being forst tabide the daies returning,
She there remain’d; but with right wary heede,
Least any more such practise should proceede. Restlesse, recomfortlesse, with heart deepe-grieved,
Now mote ye know (that which to Britomart Not suffering the least twinckling sleepe to start
Unknowen was) whence all this did proceede; Into her eye, which th' heart mote have relieved;
And for what cause so great mischiévous smart But if the least appear'd, her eyes she streight re
Was ment to her that never evill ment in bart. prieved. “Ye guilty eyes;” sayd she, “ the which with guyle The goodman of this house was Dolon hight; My heart at first betrayd, will ye betray
A man of subtill wit and wicked minde, My life now too, for which a little whyle
That whilome in his youth had bene a knight, Ye will not watcb? false watches, wellaway!
And armes had borne, but little good could finde, I wote when ye did watch both night and day
And much lesse honour by that warlike kinde Unto your losse ; and now needes will ye sleepe?
Of life: for he was nothing valorous, Now ye have made my heart to wake alway,
But with slie shiftes and wiles did underminde Now will ye sleepe? ah! wake, and rather weepe
All noble knights, which were adventurous, To thinke of your nights want, that should yee And many brought to shame by treason treacherous. waking keepe.”
He had three sonnes, all three like fathers sonnes, Thus did she watch, and weare the weary night Like treacherous, like full of fraud and guile, In waylfull plaints, that none was to appease ; Of all that on this earthly compasse wonnes : Now walking soft, now sitting still upright,
The eldest of the which was slaine erewhile As sundry chaunge her seemed best to ease. By Artegall, through his owne guilty wile; Ne lesse did Talus suffer sleepe to seaze
His name was Guizor ; whose untimely fate His eye-lids sad, but watcht continually,
For to avenge, full many treasons vile Lying without her dore in great disease;
His father Dolon had deviz'd of late (hate. Like to a spaniell wayting carefully
With these his wicked sors, and shewd his cankred Least any should betray his lady treacherously.
For sure be weend that this his present guest What time the native belman of the night,
Was Artegall, by many tokens plaine ; The bird that warned Peter of his fall,
But chiefly by that yron page he ghest, First rings his silver bell t' each sleepy wigit,
Which still was wont with Artegall remaine; That should their mindes up to devotion call,
And therefore ment him surely to have slaine : She heard a wondrous noise below the hall:
But by Gods grace, and her good heedinesse, All sodainely the bed, where she should lie,
She was preserved from their traytrous traine. By a false trap was set adowne to fall
Thus she all night wore out in watchfulnesse, Into a lower roome, and by and by
Ne suffred slothfull sleepe her eyelids to oppresse. The loft was raysd againe, that no man could it spie. With sight whereof she was dismayd right sore,
The morrow next, so soone as dawning houre
Discovered had the light to living eye,
She forth yssew'd out of her loathed bowre,
With full intent t'avenge that villany
On that vilde man and all his family: Wayting what would ensue of that event.
And, comming down to seeke them where they wond, It was not long before she heard the sound Of armed men comming with close intent
Nor sire, nor sondes, nor any could she spie; Towards her chamber; at which dreadfull stound
Each rowme she sought, but them all empty fond : She quickly caught her sword, and shield about her They all were fled for feare; but whether, nether
kond. bound. With that there came unto her chamber dore She saw it vaine to make there lenger stay, Two knights att armed ready for to fight; But tooke her steede; and thereon mounting light And after them full many other more,
Gan her addresse unto her former way. A raskall rout, with weapons rudely dight: She had not rid the mountenance of a flight, Whom soone as Talus spide by glims of night, But that she saw there present in her sight He started up, there where on ground he lay, Those two false brethren on that perillous bridge, And in his hand his thresber ready keight: On which Pollente with Artegall did fight. They, seeing that, let drive at bim streightway, Streight was the passage, like a ploughed ridge, And round about him preace in riotous aray, That, if two met, theone mote needsfallo'er the lidge.