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And sayd, her love to lose she was full loth, But either he should neither of them have, or both.

11 So foorth they went, and both together giusted;
But that same younker soone was overthrowne,
And made repent that he had rashly lusted
For thing unlawful that was not his owne:
Yet since he seemed valiant, though unknowne,
She, that no lesse was courteous then stout,
Cast how to salve, that both the custome showne1
Were kept, and yet that Knight not locked out;
That seem'd full hard t' accord two things so far in dout.

12 The seneschall was cal'd to deeme3 the right Whom she requir'd, that first fayre Amoret Might be to her allow'd, as to a knight That did her win and free from chalenge set: Which straight to her was yeelded without let: Then, since that strange Knights love from him was quitted,

She claim'd that to herselfe, as ladies det,

He as a knight might iustly be admitted;

So none should be out shut, sith all of loves were fitted.

13 With that, her glistring helmet she unlaced; Which doft, her golden lockes, that were upbound

1 Salce, secure.

2 Showne, published.

8 Deeme, judge.

XII 1.-Seneschall.] the ceremonies. H.

4 Quitted, taken.
5 Of, with.

The household stewar?, or master o

Still in a knot, unto her heeles downe traced,
And like a silken veile in compasse round
About her backe and all her bodie wound:
Like as the shining skie in summers night,
What time the dayes with scorching heat abound,
Is creasted all with lines of firie light,

That it prodigious seemes in common peoples sight.

14 Such when those knights and ladies all about
Beheld her, all were with amazement smit,
And every one gan grow in secret dout

Of this and that, according to each wit:
Some thought that some enchantment faygned it;
Some, that Bellona in that warlike wise

To them appear'd, with shield and armour fit; Some, that it was a maske of strange disguise: So diversely each one did sundrie doubts devise.

15 But that young Knight, which through her gentle deed

Was to that goodly fellowship restor❜d,

Ten thousand thankes did yeeld her for her meed, And, doubly overcommen, her ador'd:

So did they all their former strife accord;

And eke fayre Amoret, now freed from feare,
More franke affection did to her afford;

And to her bed, which she was wont forbeare, Now freely drew, and found right safe assurance



XIII. 6. With lines of firie light.] This is a description of the Aurora Borealis. H.

16 Where all that night they of their loves did treat,'
And hard adventures, twixt themselves alone,
That each the other gan with passion great
And griefull pittie privately bemone.

The morow next, so soone as Titan shone,
They both uprose and to their waies them dight
Long wandred they, yet never met with none
That to their willes could them direct aright,
Or to them tydings tell that mote their harts delight.

17 Lo thus they rode, till at the last they spide
Two armed Knights that toward them did pace,
And ech of them had ryding by his side
A Ladie, seeming in so farre a space;
But ladies none they were, albee in face
And outward shew faire semblance they did beare
For under maske of beautie and good grace

Vile treason and fowle falshood hidden were,
That mote to none but to the warie wise appeare.

18 The one of them the false Duessa hight,

That now had chang'd her former wonted hew;
For she could d'on so manie shapes in sight,
As ever could cameleon colours new ;

So could she forge all colours, save the trew: The other no whit better was then shee, But that, such as she was, she plaine did shew; Yet otherwise much worse, if worse might bee, And dayly more offensive unto each degree.1

1 Treat, discourse.
2 Griefull, grief-full.

8 I. e. prepared for their journey 4 I. e. to persons of all sorts.

19 Her name was Atè, mother of debate
And all dissention which doth dayly grow
Amongst fraile men, that many a publike state
And many a private oft doth overthrow.
Her false Duessa, who full well did know
To be most fit to trouble noble knights
Which hunt for honor, raised from below

Out of the dwellings of the damned sprights, Where she in darknes wastes her cursed daies and nights.

20 Hard by the gates of hell her dwelling is;

There, whereas all the plagues and harmes abound Which punish wicked men that walke amisse: It is a darksome delve1 farre under ground, With thornes and barren brakes environd round, That none the same may easily out-win 2; Yet many waies to enter may be found, But none to issue forth when one is in: For discord harder is to end then to begin.

1 Delve, dell.

21 And all within, the riven walls were hung
With ragged monuments of times forepast,
All which the sad effects of discord sung:
There were rent robes and broken scepters plast;
Altars defyl'd, and holy things defast;
Disshivered speares and shields ytorne in twaine;
Great cities ransackt, and strong castles rast;
Nations captíved, and huge armies slaine:
Of all which ruines there some relicks did remaine.

2 Out-win, find the way out of.

22 There was the signe1 of antique Babylon;
Of fatall Thebes; of Rome that raigned long;
Of sacred Salem; and sad Ilion,

For memorie of which on high there hong
The Golden Apple, cause of their wrong,
For which the three faire goddesses did strive:
There also was the name of Nimrod strong;
Of Alexander, and his princes five

Which shar'd to them the spoiles that he had got alive:

23 And there the relicks of the drunken fray,
The which amongst the Lapithees befell;
And of the bloodie feast, which sent away
So many Centaures drunken soules to hell,
That under great Alcides furie fell:

And of the dreadfull discord, which did drive
The noble Argonauts to outrage fell,

That each of life sought others to deprive,

All mindlesse of the Golden Fleece, which made them


1 Signe, memorial, relic.

XXII. 8. His princes five.] Cassander, Lysimachus, Ptolemy, Seleucus, and Antigonus. UPTON.

XXIII. 1.- The drunken fray.] The well-known quarrel at the marriage of Pirithous.-3. The bloodie feast, &c. Hercules, while in pursuit of the Erymanthian boar, was entertained by Pholas, who had a cask of excellent wine. This being opened, the fragrance attracted a great crowd of the Centaurs, and Hercules drove them off with firebrands and arrows.-6. The dreadfull discord, &c.] Some vague allusions to quarrels among the C. Argonauts seem to be the only foundation for this account.

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