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The ground besprinkled was with blood :

Tarquin began to yield;
For he gave back for weariness,

And low did bear his shield.

This soon Sir Lancelot espied,

He leapt upon him then,
He pulld him down upon his knee,

And rushing * off his helm,

Forthwith he struck his neck in two,

And, when he had so done, From prison threescore knights and four

Delivered every one.

* Tearing.

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THE FROLICKSOME DUKE, OR THE TINKER'S

GOOD FORTUNE.

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N

court,

para os 2 AOW as fame does report, a young duke keeps a

court, One that pleases his fancy with frolicksome sport :

But amongst all the rest, here is one I protest, Which will make you to smile when you hear the true jest : A poor tinker he found, lying drunk on the ground, As secure in a sleep as if laid in a swound.

The duke said to his men, William, Richard, and Ben,
Take him home to my palace, we'll sport with him then.
O’er a horse he was laid, and with care soon convey'd
To the palace, altho' he was poorly array'd :
Then they stript off his clothes, both his shirt, shoes, and hose,
And they put him to bed for to take his repose.

Having pulld off his shirt, which was all over dirt,
They did give him clean holland, this was no great hurt :
On a bed of soft down, like a lord of renown,
They did lay him to sleep the drink out of his crown.
In the morning when day, then admiring he lay,
For to see the rich chamber both gåudy and gay.

Now he lay something late, in his rich bed of state,
Till at last knights and squires, they on him did wait ;
And the chamberlain bare,* then did likewise declare,
He desir'd to know what apparel he'd wear :
The poor tinker amaz’d, on the gentleman gazd,
And admired of how he to this honour was rais'd.

Tho' he seem'd something mute, yet he chose a rich suit,
Which he straitways put on without longer dispute ;
With a star on his side, which the tinker oft ey'd,
And it seem'd for to swell him no little with pride ;
For he said to himself, Where is Joan my sweet wife?
Sure she never did see me so fine in her life.

From a convenient place, the right duke his good grace Did observe his behaviour in every case.

* Bare-headed.

+ Wondered.

To a garden of state, on the tinker they wait,
Trumpet sounding before him : thought he, this is great :
Where an hour or two, pleasant walks he did view,
With commanders and squires in scarlet and blue.

A fine dinner was drest, both for him and his guests,
He was plac'd at the table above all the rest,
In a rich chair or bed, lind with fine crimson red,
With a rich golden canopy over his head :
As he sat at his meat, the music play'd sweet,
With the choicest of singing his joys to complete.

While the tinker did dine, he had plenty of wine,
Rich canary with sherry and tent superfine.
Like a right honest soul, faith, he took off his bowl,
Till at last he began for to tumble and roll
From his chair to the floor, where he sleeping did snore,
Being seven times drunker than ever before.

Then the duke did ordain, they should strip him amain,
And restore him his old leather garments again :
Twas a point next the worst, yet perform it they must,
And they carried him strait, where they found him at first;
Then he slept all the night, as indeed well he might ;
But when he did waken, his joys took their flight.

For his glory to him so pleasant did seem,
That he thought it to be but a mere golden dream;
Till at length he was brought to the duke, where he sought
For a pardon, as fearing he had set him at nought;
But his highness he said, Thou’rt a jolly bold blade,
Such a frolic before I think never was play'd.

Then his highness bespoke him a new suit and cloak, Which he gave for the sake of this frolicksome joke; Nay, and five hundred pound, with ten acres of ground, Thou shalt never, said he, range the countries around, Crying “old brass to mend,” for I'll be thy good friend, Nay, and Joan thy sweet wife shall my duchess attend.

Then the tinker reply'd, What! must Joan my sweet bride
Be a lady in chariots of pleasure to ride ?
Must we have gold and land ev'ry day at command ?
Then I shall be a squire I well understand :
Well I thank your good grace, and your love I embrace,
I was never before in so happy a case.

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