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XXXIX. It fortuned one day, when Calidore Was hunting in the woods, as was his trade, A lawlesse people, Brigants 1 hight 2 of yore,. That never usde to live by plough nor spade, But fed on spoile and booty, which they made Upon their neighbours which did nigh them border, The dwelling of these shepheards did invade;
And spoyld their houses, and themselves did murder, And drove away their flocks; with other much disorder.
XL. Amongst the rest, the which they then did pray, 3 They spoyld old Melibee of all he had, And all his people captive led away; Mongst which this lucklesse Mayd away was lad, Faire Pastorella, sorrowfull and sad, Most sorrowfull, most sad, that ever sigh't, Now made the spoile of theeves and Brigants bad,
Which was the conquest of the gentlest Knight
That ever liv’d, and th’onely glory of his might.
With them also was taken Coridon,
And carried captive by those theeves away ;
Who in the covert of the night, that none
Mote them descry, nor reskue from their pray,
Unto their dwelling did them close convay:
Their dwelling in a little island was,
Covered with shrubby woods, in which no way
' Brigants, brigands, robbers.
3 Pray, plunder.
* Lad, led.
XL. 9. – Th' onely glory.] The chief or principal glory.
Appeared for people in nor out to pas,
Nor any footing fynde for overgrowen gras:
For underneath the ground their way was made
Through hollow caves, that no man mote discover
For the thicke shrubs, which did them alwaies shade
From view of living wight and covered over;
But Darkenesse dred and daily Night did hover
Through all the inner parts, wherein they dwelt;
Ne lightned was with window, nor with lover,
But with continuall candle light, which delt
A doubtfull sense of things, not so well seene as felt.
Hither those Brigants brought their present pray,
And kept them with continuall watch and ward;
Meaning, so soone as they convenient may,
For slaves to sell them for no small reward
To Merchants, which them kept in bondage hard,
Or sold againe. Now when faire Pastorell
Into this place was brought, and kept with gard
Of griesly theeves, she thought herself in hell, [dwell. Where with such damned fiends she should in darknesse
But for to tell the dolefull dreriment 1
And pittifull complaints which there she made,
(Where day and night she nought did but lament
Her wretched life shut up in deadly shade,
XLII. 5. – Daily Night.] Night or darkness in the day-time. Church proposes to read deadly for daily.
XLII. 7. – Looer.] Lover, or louder, (from the French oudrer, to open,) is an opening in the roof to let out smoke.
And waste her goodly beauty, which did fade
Like to a flowre that feeles no heate of sunne
Which may her feeble leaves with comfort glade 1 ;)
And what befell her in that theevish wonne, 2
Will in another Canto better be begonne.
The Theeves fall out for Pastorell,
Whilest Melibee is slain:
Her Calidore from them redeemes,
And bringeth backe againe.
The ioys of love, if they should ever last
Without affliction or disquietnesse
That worldly chaunces doe amongst them cast,
Would be on earth too great a blessednesse,
Liker to heaven then 1 mortall wretchednesse:
Therefore the winged god, to let men weet ?
That here on earth is no sure happinesse,
A thousand sowres bath tempred with one sweet,
To make it seeme more deare and dainty, as is meet.
Like as is now befalne to this faire Mayd,
Faire Pastorell, of whom is now my song:
Who being now in dreadfull darknesse layd
Amongst those Theeves, which her in bondage strong
Detaynd; yet Fortune, not with all this wrong
Contented, greater mischiefe on her threw,
II. 2. — Faire Pastorell, &c.] “This pastoral part of the Faerie Queene seems to have been occasioned by Sidney's Arcadia, and in conformity to the common fashion of the times, which abounded in pastoral poets.” — Warton.
And sorrowes heapt on her in greater throng ;
That whoso heares her heavinesse, would rew1
And pitty her sad plight, so chang'd from pleasaunt hew
Whylest thus she in these hellish dens renayned,
Wrapped in wretched cares and hearts unrest,
It so befell, as Fortune had ordayned,
That he which was their Capitaine profest,
And had the chiefe commaund of all the rest,
One day, as he did all his prisoners vew,
With lustfull eyes beheld that lovely guest,
Faire Pastorella, whose sad mournefull hew
Like the faire morning clad in misty fog did shew.
At sight whereof his barbarous heart was fired,
And inly burnt with flames most raging whot,
That her alone he for his
Of all the other pray which they had got,
And her in mynde did to himselfe allot.
From that day forth he kyndnesse to her showed,
And sought her love by all the meanes he mote;
With looks, with words, with gifts he oft her wowed,3 And mixed threats among, and much unto her vowed.
But all that ever he could do or say
Her constant mynd could not a whit remove,
Nor draw unto the lure of his lewd lay,
To graunt him favour or afford him love:
Yet ceast be not to sew, and all waies prove,
By which he mote accomplish bis request,
Saying and doing all that mote behove;