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RE following Glossary is intended to facilitate the reading of Chaucer, by explaining in our prefent language luch of his words and phrates as are now become difficult to be understood either from a total difufc or from any smaller alterations of orthography or infiection. Many of these words and phrafes having been already explained in the Notes of this edition, it has been thought fufficient in that case to refer the reader to thofe Notes. For the rest, it is hoped that this Work may be of ufe in removing some of the most material difficulties which occur not only in 'The Canterbury Tales, but also in the other genuine* compositions of Chaucer, as far as the present state of their text makes it safe to attempt any explanation of them.
It would beinjustice to the learned authoroftheGlofsary to Mr. Urry's edition f not to acknowledge that I have built upon his foundations, and often with his materials: in particular, I have followed and have endeavoured to improve upon his example, by constantly citing one or more places in which the word or phrase explained is to be found f. Where the places cited by him were appofite and satisfactory I have generally fpared myself the trouble of hunting for others, with
* At the end of this Advertisement! thall add a thort account of what I conceive to be the genuine Forks of Chaucer, and of those which have been either falsely ascribed to him or improperly intermixed with his in the editions: those under the two latter descriptions may be of use to illuftratctheWorks of Chaucer, but thould not be confounded with them.
+ Mr.Timothy Thomas. See App. to the Preface, (A.) n. (n.)
| 'The expediency of this practice is obvious; it enables thic reader to apprehend more clearly the interpretation of the glor. Tarift when right, and it affords him an opportunity of correct. ing those mistakes to which we are all so exceeu ingly liable.
this caution however, that I have not made use of any one of his references without having first verified it by actual inspection, a caution which every compilerought to take in all cases, and which in the present case was indispensably necessary on account of the numerous and gross errours in the text of that edition * to which Mr. Thomas' glossary was adapted.
For the further prevention of uncertainty and confusion care has been taken to mark the part of speech to which each word belongs, and to distribute all homonymous words into separate articles f. The numbers, cases, modes, times, and other inflections of the declinable parts of speech, are also marked, whenever they are expressed in a manner differing from modern usage.
Etymology is so clearly not a necessary branch of the duty of a glossarift, that I trust I shall be easily excused for not having troubled the reader with longer or more frequent digressions of that sort : in general I have thought it sufficient to mark shortly the original language from which each word is probably to be derived, according to the hypothesis which has been more fully explained in the Elay, &c. part the second, that the Norman-Saxon dialect, in which Chaucer
* See App. 10 the Preface, (A.) vol. i. 81.
+ The neglect of this precaution and of that juft mentioned has made Mr. Hearne's gloffaries to Robert of Gloucefter and Robert of Brunne of very little use. Who would place any confidence in such interpretations as the following ?-8. G. ár, as, after, before, ero, tiil. Bet, better, bid, bad, desired, prayed, be,are.-P. L. Ame, aim, esteem, love, defire, reckon'd, aim'd, fathon, tell. Bidene, biting, abiding, tarrying ,bidding, pray ing, bidden, being bidden, being desired, continually, commanded, judged, adjudged, readily.
wrote, was almost entirely composed of words derived from the Saxon and French languages *.
As every author must be allowed to be the best expositor of his own meaning, I have always endeavoured to establish the true import of any doubtful word or phrase by the usage of Chaucer himself in some other similar passage ; where it has been necessary to call in foreign assistance recourse has been chiefly had to such authors as wrote before him, or at least were contemporary with him in some part of his lifef.
* A few words are marked as having been taken immedi. ately from the Latin language; the number has increased very confiderably since the time of Chaucer. It is observable that the verbs of this sort are generally formed from the participle paft, whereas those which have come to us through France are as generally formed from the infinitive mode.--In referring words to the other two great classes a precise accuracy has not been attempted. The small remains of the genuine Anglo-Sax. on language which our lexicographers have been able to colleat do not furnith authorities for a multitude of words, which however may be fairly derived from that source, because they are to be found with little variation in the other collateral languages descended from the Gothick; the term Saxon there. fore is here used with such a latitude as to include the Gothick and all its branches. At the same time as the Francick part of the French language had a common original with the AngloSaxon, it happens that some words may be denominated elther Frenchor Saxon with almoft equal probability. In all such cases the final judgment is left to those who have leisure and inclination (according to our Author's parale, ver. 15246,) to boult the matter to the bren.
+ Someoftheseauthorshave been pointed outinthe Flay,&c. $8. n. 24. ; of the others the moft confiderable are the author of TheVisions of Pierce Ploughman, Gower, Occleve, and Lydgate.--In the Flay, &c. n. 57. a circumttance is mentioned which thews that The Visions of Pierce Plouglıman were written after 1350; I have fince taken notice of a paffage which
The proper names of persons and places as they occur in Chaucer are often either fo obscure in themfelves or so disguised by a vitious orthography that they stand in as much need of an interpreter as the most obsolete appellative: some other proper names, particularly of authors quoted, though fufficiently known and clear, have been inserted in this Glossary, in order to make it in that respect anfwer the purposes of an index.
As there are several passages of which after all my researches I am unable to give any probable explanation, I shall follow the laudable example of the learned editor of Ancient Scottish Poems, from the mf. of George Bannatyne, Edin. 1770, by subjoining a list of such words and phrases as I profess not to understand; I only with the reader may not find occasion to think that I ought to have made a considerable addition to the number,
I will just add, for the sake of those who may be disposed to make use of this Glossary in reading the Works of Chaucer not contained in this edition, that it will be found to be almost equally well adapted to every edition of those Works except Mr. Urry's: Mr. Urry's edition should never be opened by any one for the purpose of reading Chaucer.
will prove, I think, that they were written after 1362. The great storm of wind alluded to in fol. 20, b. I. 14. ;
And the soutbwelterne winde on Satterdaic at even, &c. is probably the ftorm recorded by Thorn, inter X Script. c. 2122, Waljingham, p. 178, and moft particularly by the continuator of Adam Murimuth, p. 115" A. D. 1362—15 die Januarii, “ circa boram vefperarum, ventus vehemens notus Aufiralis “ Africus tantâ rabie erupit," &C.- The 15th of January in the year 1362, N. S. was a Saturday.