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Thought I, by Saint Thomas of Kent
This were a feble foundément
To buildin on a place so hie;
He ought hym lite to glorifie
That heron builte, God so me save.

Tho fawe I all the hall igrave
With famous folkis namis fele
That haddin ben in mochil wele,
And ther famis full wide iblowe,
But well unnethis might I knowe
Any lettiris for to rede
Ther namis by, for out of drede
Thei werin almoste of thawed so
That of the lettirs one or two
Were molte awaic of every name,
So unfamous was wexe ther fame;
But men saie, Wbat maie evir laft?
Tho
gan

I in
That thei were molte awaie for hete,
And not awaie with stormis bete,
For on that othir fide I sey
Of this hill, that northward yley,
How it was writin full of names
Of folke that had afore grete fames

thei
As freshe as men had written 'hem there
The self daie, or that verry houre,
That I on 'hem began to poure;

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myne hertè cast

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Of oldè tyme,

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But well I wistè what it made,
It was conservid with the shade,
All the writyng which that I fie,
Of a castill that stode on hie,
And stode eke in so cold a place
That hete ne might it not deface.

Tho gan I on this hill to gone,
And found upon the coppe a wone,
That all the men that ben on live
Ne han the connyng to discrive
The beaute of that ilkè place,
Ne coudin castin no compace
Soche an othir for to ymake
That might of beautie be his make,
Ne one so wondirly iwrought,
That it astonieth yet my thought,
And makith all my witte to swinke,
Upon this castill for to thinke,
So that the wondir grete beautie,
Caste, craft, and curiositie,
Ne can I not to you devise,
My witte ne maie me not suffise,
But nathèlefse all the substaunce
I have yet in my remembraunce;
For why? me thoughtin, by Saint Gile,
That all was stone of berile
Bothè the castill and the toure,
And eke the hall and every boure,

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Withoutin pecis or joynynges,
But many subtill compafsynges,
As barbicans and pinnacles,
Imageries and tabernacles,
I sawe, and full eke of windowes,
As flakis fallin in grete fnowes,
And eke in eche of the pinacles
Ywerin fondrie habitacles,
In whiche ftodin all withoutin
Full the castill all aboutin
Of all manir of minstralis
And jeftours, that tellin talis
Bothe of wepyng and eke of game,
And all that longith unto Fame:
There herde I playing on an harpe,
That ylounid bothe well and sharpe,
Hym Orpheus full craftily,
And on this othir side fast by
Ysatte the harpir Orion,
And Gacides Chirion,
And othir harpirs many one,
And the Briton Glaikirion,
And smalè harpirs with ther glees
Satte vndir ’hem in divers fees,
And gone on 'hem upwarde to gape,
And counterfaited 'hem as an ape,
Or as Crafte counterfeitith Kinde.

Tho sawe I sandin 'hem behinde,

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Afarre from 'hem, all by 'hem felve,
Many a thousande tymis twelve,
That madin loudè minstralfies
In cornmuse and eke in shalmies,
And in many an othir pipe,
That craftily began to pipe
Bothe in douced and eke in rede,
That ben at feslis with the brede,
And many' a floite and litlyng horne,
And pipis made of grenè corne,
As have these little herdègromes
That kepin bestis in the bromes.

There sawe I then Dan Citherus,
And of Athenes Dan Proserus,
And Mercia, that lofte her fkinne
Bothe in the face, bodie, and chinne,
For that she would envyin, lo!
To pipin bette than Apollo.

There sawe I famous old and yong
Pipiris of all the Duche tong,
To lernin love dauncis springis,
Reyis, and the straungè thingis.

Tho sawe I in ar othir place,
Ystandyng in a large space,
Of 'hem that makin blodie foua
In trumpè, beme, and clarioun,
For in fight and in blodelhedynges
Is ufid glad clarionynges.

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There herde I trumpin Meffenus,
Of whom that spekith Virgilius.

There herd I Joab trumpe also,
Theodomas, and othir mo,
And all that usid clarion
In Casteloigne and Aragon,
That in ther tymis famous were,
To lernin sawe I trumpin there.

There sawe I fit in othir sees,
Playing on othir sondrie glees,
Whiche that I can not now nevin,
Mo then sterris ben in hevin,
Of whiche I n'ill as now not rime
For ese of you and losse of time,
For Tyme ilox, this knowin ye,
By no waie maie recovered be.

There sawe I playing jogèlours,
Magiciens and tragètours,
And Phetonisfis, charmereflis,
And olde witchis and sorceressis,
That usen exorsisacions
And eke subfumigacions,
And clerkis eke which connin well
All this magike hight Naturell,
That craftily doe ther ententes
To maken in certain ascendentes
Imagis, lo! through whiche magike
To maken a man ben whole or like.

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