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24 Up then, up, dreary Dame, of darknesse Queene;
Go, gather up the reliques of thy race;
Or else goe them avenge; and let be seene
That dreaded Night in brightest day hath place,
And can the children of faire Light deface.
Her feeling speeches some compassion mov'd
In hart, and chaunge in that great mothers face :
Yet pitty in her hart was never prov'd
Till then : for evermore she hated, never lov'd:
25 And said, Deare daughter, rightly may I rew
The fall of famous children borne of mee,
And good successes, which their foes ensew:
But who can turne the streame of destinee,
Or breake the chayne of strong necessitee,
Which fast is tyde to Joves eternall seat ?
The sonnes of Day he favoureth, I see,
And by my ruines thinkes to make them great :
To make one great by others losse is bad excheat. 26 Yet shall they not escape so freely all;
For some shall pay the price of others guilt :
And he, the man that made Sansfoy to fall,
Shall with his owne bloud price that he has spilt.
But what art thou, that telst of nephews kilt ?
I that do seeme not I, Duessa am,
(Quoth she) how ever now in garments gilt
And gorgeous gold arayd I to thee came;
Duessa I, the daughter of Deceipt and Shame.
27 Then bowing downe her aged backe, she kist
The wicked witch, saying; In that faire face
The false resemblance of Deceipt, I wist
Did closely lurke; yet so true-seeming grace
It carried, that I scarse in darkesome place
Could it discerne, though I the mother bee
Of Falshood, and roote of Duessaes race.
O welcome, child, whom I have longd to see,
And now have seene unwares. Lo now I goe with thee.
28 Then to her yron wagon she betakes
And with her beares the fowle welfavourd witch:
Through mirkesome aire her ready way she makes.
Her twyfold teme, of which two blacke as pitch,
And two were browne, yet each to each unlich,
Did softly swim away, ne ever stamp,
Unlesse she chaunst their stubborne mouths to twitch;
Then, foming tarre, their bridles they would champ,
And trampling the fine element would fiercely ramp. 29 So well they sped, that they be come at length
Unto the place, whereas the Paynim lay
Devoid of outward sense and native strength,
Coverd with charmed cloud from vew of day
And sight of men, since his late lucklesse fray.
His cruell wounds with cruddy bloud congeald
They binden up so wisely as they may,
And handle softly, till they can be heald :
So lay him in her charet, close in night conceald.
30 And, all the while she stood upon the ground,
The wakefull dogs did never cease to bay,
As giving warning of th' unwonted sound,
With which her yron wheeles did them affray,
And her darke griesly looke them much dismay:
The messenger of death, the ghastly owle,
With drery shriekes did also her bewray ;
And hungry wolves continually did howle
At her abhorred face, so filthy and so fowle.
31 Thence turning backe in silence soft they stole,
And brought the heavy corse with easy pace
To yawning gulfe of deep Avernus hole:
By that same hole an entrance, darke and bace,
With smoake and sulphur hiding all the place,
Descends to hell : there creature never past,
That backe returned without heavenly grace;
But dreadfull Furies, which their chaines have brast,
And damned sprights sent forth to make ill men aghast.
32 By that same way the direfull dames doe drive
Their mournefull charet, fild with rusty blood,
And downe to Plutoes house are come bilive:
Which passing through, on every side them stood
The trembling ghosts with sad amazed mood,
Chattring their yron teeth, and staring wide
With stonie eyes; and all the hellish brood
Of feends infernall flockt on every side,
To gaze on earthly wight, that with the Night durst ride. 33 They pas the bitter waves of Acheron,
Where many soules sit wailing woefully;
And come to fiery flood of Phlegeton,
Whereas the damned ghostes in torments fry,
And with sharp shrilling shriekes doe bootlesse cry,
Cursing high Jove, the which them thither sent.
The house of endlesse paine is built thereby,
In which ten thousand sorts of punishment
The cursed creatures doe eternally torment.
34 Before the threshold dreadfull Cerberus
His three deformed heads did lay along,
Curled with thousand adders venomous,
And lilled forth his bloudy flaming tong:
At them he gan to reare his bristles strong,
And felly gnarre, untill dayes enemy
Did him appease; then downe his taile he hong,
And suffered them to passen quietly:
For she in hell and heaven had power equally.
35 There was Ixion turned on a wheele,
For daring tempt the Queene of heaven to sin;
And Sisyphus an huge round stone did reele
Against an hill, ne might from labour lin;
There thirsty Tantalus hong by the chin;
And Tityus fed a vultur on his maw;
Typhoeus joynts were stretched on a gin;
Theseus condemnd to endlesse slouth by law;
And fifty sisters water in leke vessels draw.
36 They, all beholding worldly wights in place,
Leave off their worke, unmindfull of their smart,
To gaze on them; who forth by them doe pace,
Till they be come unto the furthest part;
Where was a cave ywrought by wondrous. art,
Deepe, darke, uneasy, dolefull, comfortlesse,
In which sad Aesculapius far apart
Emprisond was in chaines remedilesse;
For that Hippolytus rent corse he did redresse.
40 Such wondrous science in mans witt to rain
When Jove avizd, that could the dead revive,
And fates expired could renew again,
Of endlesse life he might him not deprive,
But unto hell did thrust him downe alive,
With flashing thunderbolt ywounded sore:
Where long remaining, he did alwaies strive
Himselfe with salves to health for to restore,
And slake the heavenly fire that raged evermore.
41 There auncient Night arriving, did alight
From her nigh-weary waine, and in her armes
To Aesculapius brought the wounded knight:
Whom having softly disaraid of armes,
Tho gan to him discover all his harmes,
Beseeching him with prayer, and with praise,
If either salves, or oyles, or herbes, or charmes
A fordonne wight from dore of death mote raise,
He would at her request prolong her nephews daies. 42 Ah Dame (quoth he) thou temptest me in vaine
To dare the thing, which daily yet I rew,
And the old cause of my continued paine
With like attempt to like end to renew.
Is not enough, that, thrust from heaven dew,
Here endlesse penaunce for one fault I pay,
But that redoubled crime with vengeance new
Thou biddest me to eeke? can Night defray [day?
The wrath of thundring Jove, that rules both night and
43 Not so (quoth she) but sith that heavens king
From hope of heaven hath thee excluded quight,
Why fearest thou, that canst not hope for thing;
And fearest not that more thee hurten might,
Now in the powre of everlasting Night ?
Goe to then, O thou far renowmed sonne
Of great Apollo, shew thy famous might
In medicine, that else hath to thee wonne
Great pains, and greater praise, both never to be donne. 44 Her words prevaild: And then the learned leach
His cunning hand gan to his wounds to lay,
And all things else, the which his art did teach :
Which having seene, from thence arose away
The mother of dredd darknesse, and let stay
Aveugles sonne there in the leaches cure;
And, backe retourning, took her wonted way
To ronne her timely race, whilst Phoebus pure
In westerne waves his weary wagon did recure.
45 The false Duessa, leaving noyous Night,
Returnd to stately pallace of Dame Pride;
Where when she came, she found the Faery knight
Departed thence; albe (his woundes wide
Not throughly heald) unready were to ride.
Good cause he had to hasten thence away;
For on a day his wary Dwarfe had spide
Where in a Dungeon deepe huge nombers lay
Of caytive wretched thralls, that wayled night and day :
46 A ruefull sight as could be seene with eie;
Of whom he learned had in secret wise
The hidden cause of their captivitie;
How mortgaging their lives to Covetise,
Through wastfull Pride and wanton Riotise,
They were by law of that proud Tyrannesse,
Provokt with Wrath and Envies false surmise,
Condemned to that Dongeon mercilesse,
Where they should live in woe, and die in wretchednesse.