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And offred hope of comfort did despise,
Her golden lockes most cruelly she rent,
And scratcht her face with ghastly dreriment1;
Ne would she speake, ne see, ne yet be seene,
But hid her visage, and her head downe bent,
Either for grievous shame, or for great teene,2
As if her hart with sorrow had transfixed beene:


16 Till her that Squyre bespake: "Madame, my liefe,
For Gods deare love be not so wilfull bent,
But doe vouchsafe now to receive reliefe,
The which good fortune doth to you present.
For what bootes it to weepe and to wayment*
When ill is chaunst, but doth the ill increase,
And the weake minde with double woe torment?"
When she her Squyre heard speake, she gan appease
Her voluntarie paine, and feele some secret ease.

17 Eftsoone she said: "Ah! gentle trustie Squyre, What comfort can I, wofull wretch, conceave! Or why should ever I henceforth desyre To see faire heavens face, and life not leave, Sith that false Traytour did my honour reave 5.?" "False traytour certes," saide the Faerie Knight, "I read the man that ever would deceave


A gentle lady, or her wrong through might: Death were too little paine for such a fowle despight.7

1 Dreriment, sorrow.

2 Teene, grief.

3 Liefe, dear.

4 Wayment, lament.

5 Reave, take away.

6 Read, declare.

7 Despight, injury.

18 "But now, fayre Lady, comfort to you make, And read1 who hath ye wrought this shamfull plight,

That short revenge the man may overtake, Whereso he be, and soone upon him light.” "Certes," saide she, "I wote not how he hight, But under him a gray steede he did wield, Whose sides with dapled circles weren dight2; Upright he rode, and in his silver shield He bore a bloodie crosse, that quartred all the field.”

19 "Now by my head," saide Guyon, " much I muse,3 How that same knight should do so fowle amis, Or ever gentle damzell so abuse:

For may I boldly say, he surely is


A right good knight, and trew of word ywis
I present was, and can it witnesse well,

When armes he swore, and streight did enterpris 5 Th' adventure of the Errant Damozell;

In which he hath great glory wonne, as I heare tell.

20 "Nathlesse he shortly shall againe be tryde, And fairely quit him of th' imputed blame; Els, be ye sure, he dearely shall abyde,

1 Read, declare.

2 Dight, covered, marked.

3 Muse, wonder.

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4 Yuis, surely.

5 Enterpris, undertake.

XIX. 8. Errant Damozell.] Una. He was present at the court of the Faerie Queene when the Red-cross Knight had this adventure assigned to him. H.

Or make you good amendment for the same: All wrongs have mendes, but no amendes of shame. Now therefore, Lady, rise out of your paine, And see the salving of your blotted name." Full loth she seemd thereto, but yet did faine ; For she was inly glad her purpose so to gaine.

21 Her purpose was not such as she did faine,
Ne yet her person such as it was seene;
But under simple shew, and semblant plaine,1
Lurkt false Duessa secretly unseene,

As a chaste virgin that had wronged beene;
So had false Archimago her disguysd,

To cloke her guile with sorrow and sad teene2:
And eke himselfe had craftily devisd

To be her Squire, and do her service well aguisd.3

22 Her, late forlorne and naked, he had found Where she did wander in waste wildernesse, Lurking in rockes and caves far under ground, And with greene mosse cov'ring her nakednesse, To hide her shame and loathly filthinesse,


Sith her Prince Arthur of proud ornaments And borrowd beauty spoyld: her nathëlesse Th' Enchaunter finding fit for his intents Did thus revest,5 and deckt with dew habiliments.

23 For all he did was to deceive good knights, And draw them from pursuit of praise and fame

1 Semblant plaine, honest appearance.

2 Teene, grief.

3 Aguisd, dressed.

4 Sith, since.

5 Revest, reclothe.

To slug1 in slouth and sensuall delights,
And end their daies with irrenowmed2 shame,
And now exceeding griefe him overcame,
To see the Redcrosse thus advaunced hye;
Therefore this craftie engine he did frame,
Against his praise to stirre up enmitye
Of such, as vertues like mote unto him allye.

24 So now he Guyon guydes an uncouth way Through woods and mountaines, till they came at last

Into a pleasant dale that lowly lay

Betwixt two hils, whose high heads, overplast,
The valley did with coole shade overcast ;
Through midst thereof a little river rold,

By which there sate a knight with helme unlaste, Himselfe refreshing with the liquid cold,

After his travell long and labours manifold.

25 "Lo! yonder he," cryde Archimage alowd, "That wrought the shamefull fact which I did shew;

And now he doth himselfe in secret shrowd,
To fly the vengeaunce for his outrage dew;
But vaine; for ye shall dearely do3 him rew :
(So God ye speed and send you good successe!)
Which we far off will here abide to vew."

So they him left inflam'd with wrathfulnesse, That streight against that Knight his speare he did


1 Slug, live idly.

2 Irrenowmed, inglorious.

3 Do, make.

26 Who, seeing him from far so fierce to pricke,
His warlike armes about him gan embrace,
And in the rest his ready speare did sticke;
Tho,1 whenas still he saw him towards pace,
He gan rencounter him in equall race.
They bene ymett, both ready to affrap,2
When suddeinly that warriour gan abace
His threatned speare, as if some new mishap
Had him betide, or hidden danger did entrap;

27 And cryde, "Mercie, Sir Knight! and mercie, Lord,
For mine offence and heedelesse hardiment,
That had almost committed crime abhord,
And with reprochfull shame mine honour' shent,3
Whiles cursed steele against that badge I bent,
The sacred badge of my Redeemers death,
Which on your shield is set for ornament!'
But his fierce foe his steed could stay uneath,4

Who prickt with courage kene, did cruell battell breath.

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1 Tho, then.

2 Affrap, strike.


28 But when he heard him speake, streight way

His errour; and, himselfe inclyning, sayd:
"Ah! deare Sir Guyon, well becommeth you,
But me behoveth rather to upbrayd,

Whose hastie hand so far from reason strayd,
That almost it did haynous violence
On that fayre ymage of that heavenly Mayd,

3 Shent, disgraced.

4 Uneath, scarcely.

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