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And said, Why Archimago, lucklesse syre,
What doe I see? what hard mishap is this,
That hath thee hither brought to taste mine yre?
Or thine the fault, or mine the error is,
Instead of foe to wound my friend amis ?
He answered nought, but in a traunce still lay,
And on those guilefull dazed eyes of his
The cloude of death did sit.
Which doen away,
He left him lying so, ne would no lenger stay :
But to the virgin comes, who all this while
Amased stands, her selfe so mockt to see
By him, who has the guerdon of his guile,
For so misfeigning her true knight to bee :
Yet is she now in more perplexitie,
Left in the hand of that same Paynim bold,
From whom her booteth not at all to flie;
Who, by her cleanly garment catching hold,
Her from her Palfrey pluckt, her visage to behold.
But her fierce servant, full of kingly awe
And high disdaine, whenas his soveraine Dame
So rudely handled by her foe he sawe,
With gaping jawes full greedy at him came,
And ramping on his shield, did weene the same 365
Have reft away with his sharpe rending clawes :
But he was stout, and lust did now inflame
His corage more, that from his griping pawes
He hath his shield redeem'd, and foorth his swerd he drawes
O then too weake and feeble was the forse
Of salvage beast, his puissance to withstand :
For he was strong, and of so mightie corse,
As ever wielded speare in warlike hand,
And feates of armes did wisely understand.
Eftsoones he perced through his chaufed chest
With thrilling point of deadly yron brand,
And launcht his Lordly hart : with death opprest
He roar'd aloud, whiles life forsooke his stubborne brest.
Who now is left to keepe the forlorne maid
From raging spoile of lawlesse victors will ?
Her faithfull gard remov'd, her hope dismaid,
Her selfe a yielded pray to save or spill.
He now Lord of the field, his pride to fill,
With foule reproches, and disdainfull spight
Her vildly entertaines, and will or nill,
Beares her away upon his courser light:
Her prayers nought prevaile, his rage is more of might.
And all the way, with great lamenting paine,
And piteous plaints she filleth his dull eares,
That stony hart could riven have in twaine,
And all the way she wets with flowing teares :
But he enrag'd with rancor, nothing heares.
Her servile beast yet would not leave her so,
But followes her farre off, ne ought he feares,
To be partaker of her wandring woe,
More mild in beastly kind, then that her beastly foe.
To sinfull house of Pride, Duessa
guides the faithfull knight,
Where brother's death to wreak Sansjoy
doth chalenge him to fight.
Young knight whatever that dost armes professe,
And through long labours huntest after fame,
Beware of fraud, beware of ficklenesse,
In choice, and change of thy deare loved Dame,
Least thou of her beleeve too lightly blame,
And rash misweening doe thy hart remove :
For unto knight there is no greater shame,
Then lightnesse and inconstancie in love;
That doth this Redcrosse knights ensample plainly prove.
Who after that he had faire Una lorne,
Through light misdeeming of her loialtie,
And false Duessa in her sted had borne,
Called Fidess', and so supposd to bee ;
Long with her traveild, till at last they see
A goodly building, bravely garnished,
The house of mightie Prince it seemd to bee :
And towards it a broad high way that led,
All bare through peoples feet, which thither traveiled.
Great troupes of people traveild thitherward
Both day and night, of each degree and place,
But few returned, having scaped hard,"
With balefull beggerie, or foule disgrace;
Which ever after in most wretched case,
Like loathsome lazars,o by the hedges lay.
Thither Duessa bad him bend his pace :
For she is wearie of the toilesome way,
And also nigh consumed is the lingring day.
A stately Pallace built of squared bricke,
Which cunningly was without morter laid,
Whose wals were high, but nothing strong, nor thick,
And golden foile all over them displaid,
That purest skye with brightnesse they dismaid :
High lifted up were many loftie towres,
And goodly galleries farre over laid,
Full of faire windowes and delightful bowres ;
And on the top a Diall told the timely howres.
It was a goodly heape for to behould,
And spake the praises of the workmans wit;
But full great pittie, that so faire a mould
Did on so weake foundation ever sit:
For on a sandie hill, that still did flit
And fall away, it mounted was full hie,
That every breath of heaven shaked it :
And all the hinder parts, that few could spie,
Were ruinous and old, but painted cunningly.
Arrived there, they passed in forth right;
For still to all the gates stood open wide :
Yet charge of them was to a Porter hight
Cald Malvenù, who entrance none denide :
Thence to the hall, which was on every side
With rich array and costly arras dight:
Infinite sorts of people did abide
There waiting long, to win the wished sight
Of her that was the Lady of that Pallace bright.
By them they passe, all gazing on them round,
55 And to the Presence mount; whose glorious vew Their frayle amazed senses did confound : In living Princes court none ever knew Such endlesse richesse, and so sumptuous shew; Ne Persia selfe, the nourse of pompous pride
30 Like ever saw.
And there a noble crew Of Lordes and Ladies stood on every side, Which with their presence faire the place much beautifide.
High above all a cloth of State was spred,
And a rich throne, as bright as sunny day,
On which there sate most brave embellished
With royall robes and gorgeous array,
A mayden Queene, that shone as Titans ray,
In glistring gold, and peerelesse pretious stone:
Yet her bright blazing beautie did assay
To dim the brightnesse of her glorious throne,
As envying her selfe, that too exceeding shone.