Page images
PDF
EPUB

33 Tho, when the Beast saw he mote nought availe
By force, he gan his hundred tongues apply,
And sharpely at him to revile and raile
With bitter termes of shamefull infamy;
Oft interlacing many a forged lie,

Whose like he never once did speake, nor heart,
Nor ever thought thing so unworthily:

Yet did he nought, for all that, him forbeare, But strained him so streightly that he chokt him

neare.

At last, when as he found his force to shrincke And rage to quaile, he took a muzzell strong Of surest yron made with many a lincke; Therewith he mured up his mouth along, And therein shut up his blasphemous tong, For never more defaming gentle knight, Or unto lovely lady doing wrong: And thereunto a great long chaine he tight, With which he drew him forth, even in his own de

spight.

Like as whylóme that strong Tirynthian swaine
Brought forth with him the dreadfull dog of hell
Against his will fast bound in yron chaine,
And roring horribly did him compell

To see the hatefull sunne, that he might tell

1 Streightly, closely.
2 Mured, closed.

8 I. e. to prevent, &c.
4 Tight, tied.

XXXV. 1 — Like as, &c.] The reference is of course to the legend of Hercules and Cerberus.

To griesly Pluto what on earth was donne, And to the other damned ghosts which dwell For aye in darkenesse which day-light doth shonne: So led this knight his captyve with like conquest

wonne.

16 Yet greatly did the Beast repine1 at those Straunge bands, whose like till then he never bore, Ne ever any durst till then impose;

And chauffed inly, seeing now no more

Him liberty was left aloud to rore:

Yet durst he not draw backe, nor once withstand The proved powre of noble Calidore;

But trembled underneath his mighty hand,

And like a fearefull dog him followed through the land.

37 Him through all Faery Land he follow'd so,
As if he learned had obedience long,
That all the people, whereso he did go,

Out of their townes did round about him throng,
To see him leade that beast in bondage strong,
And, seeing it, much wondred at the sight;
And all such persons as he earst did wrong
Reioyced much to see his captive plight,

And much admyr'd' the Beast, but more admyr'd' the

Knight.

3

1 Repine, fret.

2 Admyr'd, wondered at.

VOL. IV.

14

18 Thus was this monster, by the maystring might Of doughty Calidore, supprest and tamed, That never more he mote endammadge wight

8 Maystring, mastering.

With his vile tongue, which many had defamed, And many causelesse caused to be blamed: So did he eeke long after this remaine, Untill that, (whether wicked fate so framed Or fault of men,) he broke his yron chaine, And got into the world at liberty againe.

39 Thenceforth more mischiefe and more scath1 he wrought

To mortall men then h. had done before; Ne ever could, by any, more be brought Into like bands, ne maystred any more: Albe that, long time after Calidore, The good Sir Pelleas him tooke in hand, And after him Sir Lamoracke of yore, And all his brethren borne in Britaine land; Yet none of them could ever bring him into band.

40 So now he raungeth through the world againe,
And rageth sore in each degree and state;
Ne any is that may him now restraine,
He growen is so great and strong of late,
Barking and biting all that him doe bate,2
Albe they worthy blame, or cleare of crime;
Ne spareth he most learned wits to rate,
Ne spareth he the gentle poets rime;
But rends, without regard of person or of time.

8

11 Ne

may this homely verse, of many meanest, Hope to escape his venemous despite,

3 Albe they, whether they be

1 Scath, injury.
Bate, bait.

More then my former writs, all were they cleanest
From blamefull blot, and free from all that wite,'
With which some wicked tongues did it backebite,
And bring into a mighty Peres displeasure,
That never so deserved to endite.2

Therfore do you, my rimes, keep better measure, And seeke to please; that now is counted wisemens threasure.

1 Wite, blame.

2 Endite, indict, accuse.

XLI. 6. Mighty Peres displeasure.] This is probably the Lord Treasurer Burleigh, who is well known to have been unfriendly to the poet. He is supposed to have been offended with Spenser's satire upon Bishop Aylmer (Ellmor), under the name of Morell, in the seventh eclogue of the Shepherd's Calendar. H.

TWO CANTOS

OF MUTABILITIE:

WHICH, BOTH FOR FORME AND MATTER, APPEARE TO BR PARCELL OF SOME FOLLOWING BOOKE OF

THE FAERIE QUEENE,

UNDER

THE LEGEND OF CONSTANCIE."

CANTO VI.

Proud Change, not pleasd in mortall things
Beneath the moone to raigne,

Pretends as well of gods as men

To be the soveraine.

I WHAT man that sees the ever-whirling wheele
Of Change, the which all mortall things doth sway,
But that therby doth find, and plainly feele,

How Mutability in them doth play
Her cruell sports to many mens decay 1?

1 Decay, destruction.

*These two cantos, and the fragment of the third, were not published during Spenser's life. They appeared for the first time in the folio edition of the Faerie Queene, published in 1609, with out any farther preface or explanation than is given above. H.

« PreviousContinue »