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And kest him in his awin dungeoun,

Allane withouttin feir,
With hungir, cauld, and confusioun,

As full weill worthy weir.

Syne brak the bour, had hame the Bricht, 16

Unto hir Fadir deir.
Saw evill wondit was the Knycht,

That he behuvit17 to de.
Unlufum was his likame18 dicht,

His sark was all bludy;
In all the warld was thair a wicht

So peteouss for to se!

The Lady murnyt, and maid grit mone,

With all hir mekle micht: “I luvit nevir lufe, bot one,

That dulfully now is dicht! God sen my lyfe wer fra me tone,

Or I had sene yone ficht; Or ellis in begging evir to gone

Furth with yone curtass Knycht.”

He said, “Fair Lady now mone I

De,19 trestly20 ye me trow:
Tak ye my sark that is bludy,

And hing it forrow yow.
First think on it, and syne on me,

Quhen men cumis yow to wow.”21
The lady said, “Be22 Mary fre,

Thairto I make a vow."

Quhen that scho lukit to the serk,

Scho thocht on the persoun:
And prayit for him with all hir harte,

That lowsd hir of bandoun : 23

16 bright, fair; i. e., the Lady. 20 truly.

18 body,

17 must.

"bog che Lady

19 die.
23 bondage

21 woo.

22 by.

Quhair scho was wont to sit full merk24

In that deip dungeoun:
And evir quhill scho wes in quert, 25

That wass hir a lessoun.

So weill the Lady luvit the Knycht,

That no man wald scho tak. So suld we do our God of micht

That did all for us mak;
Quhilk fullely to deid wes dicht,

For sinfull manis saik.
Sa suld we do, both day and nycht,

With prayaris. to him mak,


This King is lyk the Trinitie

Baith in hevin and heir.
The26 Manis saule to the Lady:

The Gyane to Lucefeir.
The Knycht to Chryst, that deit on tre,

And cofta? our synnis deir: The pit to hell, with panis fell;

The26 syn to the woweir. 28

The Lady was wowd, but scho said “Nay”

With men that wald hir wed; Sa suld we wryth29 all syn away,

That in our breist is bred. I pray to Jesu Chryst verrey

For us his blud that bled, To be our help on Domysday,

Quhair lawis ar straitly led.

The saule30 is Godis dochtir deir,

And eik his handewerk,
That was betrasit with Lucifeir,

Quha sittis in hell, full merk. 2 joyful.

28 "The" is superfluous.

24 dark. 28 wooer.

27 bought. 30 soul.

29 remove.

Borrowit31 with Chrystis angell cleir,

Hend32 men! will ye nocht herk?
For his lufe that bocht us deir,

Think on the Bludy Serk!

WILLIAM DUNBAR (1460?–1520?]


Swet rois of vertew and of gentilness,
Delytsum lily of everie lustyness,

Richest in bontie and in bewtie clear,

And everie vertew that is (esteemèd] deer, Except onlie that ye ar mercyless.

Into your garth this day I did persew;
There saw I flowris that fresche wer of hew;

Baith quhyte and reid most lusty wer to seyne,

And halesome herbis upon stalkis grene; Yet leaf nor flowr fynd could I nane of rew.

I dout that Merche, with his cauld blastis keyne, Has slain this gentil herbe, that I of mene,

Quhois piteous death dois to my heart sic paine

That I wald mak to plant his root againeSo confortand his levis unto me bene. a redeemed.

32 courteous.

JOHN SKELTON (1460?-1529]


As mydsomer flowre;
Jentill as fawcoun
Or hawke of the towere:
With solace and gladnes,
Moche mirthe and no madness,
All good and no badness,

So joyously,
So maydenly,
So womanly,
Her demenyng
In every thynge,
Far, far passynge
That I can endyght,
Or suffyce to wryghte,
Of mirry Margarete,
As mydsomer flowre,
Jentyll as fawcoun
Or hawke of the towre:
As pacient and as styll,
And as full of good wyll
As faire Isaphill;
Swete pomaunder,
Goode cassaunder;
Stedfast of thought,
Wele made, wele wrought;
Far may be sought,
Erst that ye can fynde
So corteise, so kynde,
As mirry Margaret,
This mydsomer floure,
Jentyll as fawcoun
Or hawke of the towre.




The king sits in Dumferling toune,

Drinking the blude-reid wine:
“O whar will I get guid sailor,

To sail this schip of mine?”

Up and spak an eldern knicht,

Sat at the kings richt kne:
“Sir Patrick Spence is the best sailor,

That sails upon the se.”

The king has written a braid letter,

And signd it wi his hand,
And sent it to Sir Patrick Spence,

Was walking on the sand.

The first line that Sir Patrick red,

A loud lauch lauchèd he;
The next line that Sir Patrick red,

The teir blinded his ee.

“O wha is this has don this deid,

This ill deid don to me,
To send me out this time o' the yeir,

To sail upon the se!

“Mak hast, mak haste, my mirry men all,

Our guid schip sails the morne:” “O say na sae, my master deir,

For I feir a deadlie storme.

“Late, late yestreen I saw the new moone,

Wi the auld moone in hir arme,
And I feir, I feir, my deir master,

That we will cum to harme.”

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