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From whom doscondeth by the rightful line
That in his youthe doth so clcrely shine,
Your noble grace and excellent highness
This little book, opprest with rudeness
Of your predecessor4 the fifth King Henry
Right famous books of perfect memory,
The Light of Truth I lack cunning to cloke,
Nor hide my matter with a misty smoke,
Beseeching your grace to pardon mine ign'runce
Have so compiled now without doubtunce
For under a colour n truth may rise,
As was the guise in old antiquitie
To cloke the truth of their infirmitie
Or yet on joy to have mortalitie.
I me excuse if by negligence
That I do offend for lack of science.7
The poem then begins by telling how Graundamoure, who speaks in his own person, walked in spring-time into a flowery meadow. He went forth in a fair path that he found, not knowing whither it would
'A> Henry VIII.
1 In Becms to be lost as a syllable in the preceding sound of "shine," as ed was commonly left unpronounced when added to verba ending in d or t.
3 The, Honk of Bury, John Lydgate.
* The short e iu the second syllable of "predecessor" is not sounded.
1 fatal, dealing; with the destinies of men; "The Fulls of Princes," *<■.
<■ Uv is slurred in pronunciation before ttuutcr, as in the preceding libe the before (race.
: These two lines are evidently corrupt in the ISM edition, from which "The Pastime of Pleasure" was reprinted, in 1815, for the Percy Society. As negligence and lack of knowledge are separate causes of offence, possibly " that " has slipped out of its place after "if" in the first line, and "or" is omitted before "for" in the second.
lead, until he saw an image with hands jwintiug towards two highways; and in the right hand was this description:—
"'This is the straight way of contemplation
"And in the other8 hand right faire written was
Graundamoure took the way of Active Life, and, noticing the charm of pleasant byways, went straight on, until at evening he came to a figure which had inscribed in its breast,
"This is the way and the situation
Unto the Tower of famous Doctrine;
As he rested by this image, Sloth caught his head in a net, and while he yet slept there came a royal blast of a great horn that awoke him. There were the red clouds of daybreak in the sky, and he sa* riding from a far valley a goodly lady—Fameenvironed with tongues of fire as bright as any star, on a palfrey swift as the wind, with two white greyhounds before her. Espying Graundamoure, the greyhounds ran to him, and leapt and fawned u(>oii him; their names, written in diamond on their gold collars, were Governance and Grace. The lady who followed marvelled that her greyhounds were so friendly with him, and asked his name. He was Graundamoure, who sought her direction to the Tower of Doctrine and she f—She was Fame, whose horn had blo*n after the death of many a champion:
'• And after this, Fame gan to express
Of jeopardous way to the Tower Perilous,
Fame told the perils of the way, but promised Graundamoure the victory if he followed her direction.
"To the Tower of Doctrine ye shall take your way.
And Countenance, the goodly portress,
Shall let you in full well and nobly,1
Of all the seven sciences right notably.
These in your mind you may ententively
the youth to begin, and undergo his years of education in the Tower of Doctrine, whose seven stages rise from Grammar with her A B C to heavenly contemplations of Theology. Countenance was the portress who admitted Graundamoure, and showed him on the arras of the entrance-hall an image of the career before him, setting forth how in the labour towards La Bel Pucell "a noble knight should win the victory." Then the portress introduced the adventurer to the lady Grammar, into whose chamber "the right noble Dame Congruity" admitted him. Dame Grammar told him how to the wise of old it was their whole delight, for common profit of
Unto Dame Doctrine give perfect audience,
Fame left Graundamoure with the greyhounds. He travelled on, again rested till morning, and then saw set on a rock "the royal tower of moral document," made of fine copper, with turrets that shone against the sun. It is the pilgrimage of man, whose way was first over the flowery fields of childhood till a path in life had to l>e chosen; the path of Active Life being chosen, fame of the prize to be won nerved
1 Nobly. Pronounced noM-i/, as three syllables. See Dr. Abbot's "Shakespearian Grammar," section 477, " Liquids in dissyllables are frequently pronounced as though an extra vowel were introduced between them and the preceding consonant" So in "Comedy of Errors," act v., scene 1, "And these two Dromios, one in sernb-l-ance;" "Coriolanus," act iii., scene 2, "Be thus to them. You do the nob-l-cr." Two Hues farther on " sciences " is pronounced " science," the s being merged in the similar final sound of the word.
humanity, to study the seven sciences many a long winter's night. After this she taught Graundamoure right well, first his Donet,2 and then his accidence. When he had been taught by Grammar, he went up to the bright chamber of Logic; and when that fair lady had instructed him, " then above Logic up we went a stair," and there was the star of famous eloquence, the Lady Rhetoric to kneel to. Rhetoric explained to him at length the five parts of her science, which was founded by Reason—
"Man for to govern well and prudently;
* Hia Donet. .T:lm - Donatus, born about A.d. 333, was the teacher of St. Jerome. He wrote an elementary book on the eight parts of speech applied to Latin, and the long-continued use of this in elementary teaching caused a Donatus, or a Donet, to become the common name for a grammar, or a first book of instruction upon any subject. We have seen (page 121) Reginald Pecock giving the name of " Donet" to a book on the First Principles of Faith.
This section of the poem closes with loving lines to the memory of Chaucer and of Lydgate, whom Stephen Hawes honoured more especially as the master upon whose trace he would seek to follow. Graundamoure next passed to the chamber of Arithmetic,
"With gold depainted, every perfect number,
The next stage led Graundamoure to the tower of Music, and in her chamber, advanced by knowledge to a sense of the harmonies of life, he first saw La Bell PucelL
"There sat Dame JIusic with all her minstrelsy,
1 Lhtnj (" detrahere"), to draw away, subtract.
aside to conceal, in a temple, hope, doubt, and despair; the coming again of Graundamoure, led by Good Counsel, to declare his love to the lady in a long
* The Tabor was a small drum usually played with aceomp of fife. The Sackbut was a bass-trumpet with Mops, and sa its i "aambuca" was derived from the elder-tree, it was probably fa of wood, a sort of bassoon. The Recorder was a flageolet or fcu**' pipe, so named from the word " record " once commonly applied * the singing of birds, as in an eclogue by Drayton :—
"Fair Philomel, night music of the spring, Sweetly records her tuneful harmony." The Crowd, "crwth" of the Cymry, was the old British tdd> "chrotta Britanna canat," wrote Venantius Fortunatus at tbe «•* of the sixth century. Invented in Britain, and returned to ns *trk improvements by the Arabs, the fiddle in a simple form, still caDad t "crowd," and the fiddler a "crowder," remained familiar the people. Cymphans were "symphonies," or " chyfonies;" n in the " Boman de Brut"—
"Symphonies, salterions, Monocordes, tyinbres, comma.'* They were large stringed instruments, a sort of harp. !«• ■ dialogue of alternate stanzas which ended in her acceptance of his suit. But he must seek her by a long and dangerous way, for now she is withdrawn from him to a far country :—
"To me to come is hard and dangerous
So Graundamoure was parted from the fair ideal of life which he had touched, and with which he had kept step when his heart was young and he had been trained up to a perception of true harmony. His friend Good Counsel bade him never flinch, but complete his training by the Seven Sciences, and then go forward to the tower of Chivalry, and be armed for the battles of the life before him. Forth he went, therefore, to the tower of Geometry, and from her to the green meadow whence Astronomy looks heavenward, and where he learnt from her that
"God himself is chief astronomer
That made all things according to His will;
More is taught by Astronomy of the works of Nature and the wits of man, of the high influence of stars and planets as the instruments to Nature's working in every degree.
Instructed in the seven sciences, the Quadrivium of Grammar, Logic, Rhetoric, Arithmetic, and the Trivium of Music, Geometry, Astronomy,5 Graundamoure with a varlet called Attendance and his greyhounds Grace and Governance, proceeded over a hill and down a dale to the Tower of Chivalry, where a horn hung by a shield and helmet at the entry. The loud blast of the horn brought to the tower door its gentle porter, Steadfastness, who admitted him into the base-court.3 There he saw four images of armed knights on horseback, contrived to meet in shock of arms by craft of Geometry, with wheels, and cogs, and cords. Beside this tower was a temple which Graundamoure entered. It was the temple of Mars, whose image he saw therein on a wheel-top in the embrace
(dulcimer) was a stringed instrument, usually triangular, with about fifty wires, cast over a bridge at each end, struck with little iron rods. The dulcimer was laid on a table and played with a small rod in each hand. The Clavi-cimbal was a kind of spinet, which the French called clavecin, and the Italian cembalo Some of Bach's concertos were written " a due cembali." Like the clavichord, it was pluyed with keys, and ranks with the ancestors of the pianoforte. The Bebeck is another form of rustic fiddle, taking a corruption of the name rebab, or rebebbe, by which the British crwth or crowd, played with a bow, was returned to Europe from the East by the Crusaders. Use of the fiddle-bow is said to have had its origin in ancient Britain. 'Two. In the original" With two," the first syllable being dropped in the scanning.
* Tririum and Quairirutm. .(Sec " Shorter English Poems," Note 2, pa?e 12.)
• BaM-caurt, outer or lower court.
of Lady Fortune, who had two faces under one hood. Of Mars Graundamoure prayed for grace to secure enduring fame. To Mars he said that in the thirtyfirst year of his young flowering age he thought himself escaped from childish ignorance, and that his wit could withstand and rule Venus and Cupid, but she had wounded him with fervent love, and set before him perilous adventure in which he needed help from Mara. Mara answered that Graundamoure was born under the rule of Venus, and therefore, when he had learned perfectly to govern himself by prudent chivalry, he must go humbly to the temple of Venus and make his oblation, suing to her by the disposition which constrained him to love ladies witli a true affection. But here Fortune with the two faces, from behind Sir Mara, laughed at the notion that Mars could have aid to give in the search, where all depended upon Fortune's ordering. Then Fortune declared at large the power of the turning of her wheel; Mars had less might; to her, therefore, Graundamoure must sue. Mars answered that she was nothing substantial, neither spiritual nor terrestrial, and nothing can do nothing. He said to her,
"The Man is Fortune, in the proper deed,
While yet marvelling at the argument between Mara and Fortune, Graundamoure was approached by Minerva, who led him into her own hall. Knights were there playing at chess, who left their play gently to welcome him; especially was he welcomed by Sir Nurture and his brother Courtesy. They took him up a stair into a chamber gaily glorified. At its door stood a knight named Truth, who told Graundamoure that before entry he should promise to love him. The chamber door was held in custody for King Melezius, that no man might enter wrongfully, and seek without Truth to be chivalrous. King Melezius admitted Graundamoure :—
"'With all my heart I will,' quoth he, 'accept
Presented to Melezius, armed and taught by Minerva, he was prepared for knighthood, and when knighted was thus taught his duty by the King :—
"' Knighthood,' he said, 'was first established
"' For knighthood is not in the feats of war,
♦ Dr/iir, defer, leave Time to right. Or solve, as in Robert of Brnnne's version of Langtoft's Chronicle, "defare," undo.
And no quarrel' a knight ought to tako
"' For first Good Hope his leg harness should be;
His rich placard ■ should be Good Business,
"' Also true widows he ought to restore
Unto their right for to attain their dower,
The wealth of maidens with his mighty power.
So taught, and armed, and mounted on the fair barbed steed Minerva brought him, Graundamoure went forward again with his two greyhounds, Grace and Governance, and his varlet, Good Attendance. The knight Truth rode out to put him on his way with a fair company of other knights—Sir Fortitude, Sir Justice, Sir Misericorde, Sir Sapience, Sir Courtesy, with famous Nurture, and then Sir Concord. Each took him by the hand when he at last departed :—
'"Adieu!' they said, 'and Grace with you stand
\nd good dame Minerve unto me then said:
Be bold, and hardy, and no thing afraid,
On urard went Graundamoure into the wilderness, and in the darkness of night slept under a hill-side till the neigh of his steed Galantise aroused him at sunrise. Then, as he rode on with his varlet and his greyhounds, he was joined by one
"on a little nag,
A foolish dwarfc, no thing for the war,
'Qmiml. Pronounced as three syllables, lu-ar-reJ.
* Placard, a kind of breast-plate, a man's jewelled stomacher.
* Bmndi-M, supported.
* "The Sword of the 8pirit. which is the Word of God " (Epbesinns vi. 17). "For the Word of God is quick, aud powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of the joints anil marrow, ami is a rtiscemer of the thoughts aud intents of the heart " (Hebrews iv. 121.
1 The hood with a bell on its point and the fox-tail for playful flapping about were badges of the fool. "A flap with the foxtail" thus lfecame a phrase for a jest. "In a pyed coat," a coat of motley, like the magpie.
* BryijQe-a-brawc (French "De brie et de broc"), anyhow, hither and thither. Whtnce bric-d-bvac.
A repulsive sketch of the dwarf is given, and thr poem then breaks for a time from the seven-lined Troilus Verse or Chaucer Stanza, vulgarly calM rhyme royal, because James I. of Scotland followed his master Chaucer in the use of it. This verse Lai been fixed for us by Chaucer's example in the san> position that had been given by the genius of Boo caccio to octave rhyme in Italy, as the standard measure for sustained poetic narrative. So it remained until after the accession of Elizabeth, and so. therefore, it was adopted by Stephen Hawes for hi. "Pastime of Pleasure," and significantly dropped when this character of empty prating slander, Fal-e Report, under the name of Godfrey Gobelive, is set t> try Graundamoure's temper by gross slander against woman. The verse chosen for this part of the narrative is Chaucer's Riding Rhyme, so called from its use by Chaucer in description of his pilgrims on the road to Canterbury :—
"'Welcome,' I said; 'I pray thee now tell
With this scorner of women by his side, Graunda moure visited the Temple of Venus, where i-< . applied himself in his own way to Dame Sapience, her secretary. For Graundamoure, Dame Sapiet».v drew up a Supplication, and with the setting forth of this the poeni resumes its original measure. Venaj bade Graundamoure abide with her awhile, andcaof*i Sapience next to write a letter to La Bell PoceL with thrice nine " Wo worths" in it, in case she <h' not redress his pains. Cupid fled with the letter t< La Bell Pucell, and Graundamoure ottered a turtle *> Venus.
Then he went forward upon his way, but Godfrw Gobelive came running
"With 's little nag. and cried 'Tarf: t.iry!
His company uj)on the road again reduces th? verse into riding rhyme, for he resumed his mem ment at the expense of women, till he was overUk'n by a lady from the Tower of Chastity called Dune Correction, who, with a knotted whip, set Godfre.T skipping, and declared him to be False Reportescaped from the prison in which he had been he« with Villain-Courage and vile False Conjecture. Graundamoure then went as a guest to the Tower,; Chastity, and False Report as a prisoner, with h> feet fettered underneath his nag. There he »a* "V bright hall of jet glazed with crystal, and redan' with light of the carbuncle hung from its goluV* roof; he saw the goodly company, and saw also "•* dungeons of the scorner and the wronger. Hw^ with their heads down in hollv bushes and scow;
I am, used to represent a rustic speech. Fust-Eoo*