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This was my fyrst conceite,—that all her ruth arose
mone." This pleasaunt aunswer heard, the lady partes agayne, And Capilet, the maydens syre, within a day or twayne, Conferreth with his frendes for marriage of his daughter, And many gentilmen there were, with busy care that sought her; Both, for the mayden was well-shaped, yong and fayre, As also well brought up, and wise; her fathers onely heyre.
Emong the rest was one inflamde with her desyre,
“ Madame, I marvell much, that you so lavasse are Of me your childe your jewell once, your onely joy and care, As thus to yelde me up at pleasure of another, Before you know if I do lyke or els mislike my lover. Doo what you list; but yet of this assure you still, If you do as you say you will, I yelde not there untill. For had I choyse of twayne, farre rather would I choose My part of all your goodes and eke my breath and lyfe to loose, Then graunt that he possess of me the smallest part: Fyrst, weary of my painefull lyfe, my cares shall kill my hart; Els will I perce my brest with sharpe and bloody knife; And you, my mother, shall becomme the murdresse of my lyfe, In geving me to him whom I ne can, ne may, Ne ought, to love: wherefore, on knees, deere mother, I you
pray, To let me live henceforth, as I have lived tofore; Ceasse all your troubles for my sake, and care for me no more ; But suffer Fortune feerce to worke on me her will, In her it lyeth to do me boote, in her it lyeth to spill. For whilst you for the best desyre to place me so, You hast away my lingring death, and double all my woe."
So deepe this aunswere made the sorrowes downe to sinke Into the mothers brest, that she ne knoweth what to thinke
Of these her daughters woords, but all appalde she stândes,
leysure; Ne on her tears or plaint at all to have remorse, But, if they cannot with her will, to bring the mayde perforce. The message heard, they part, to fetch that they must fet, And willingly with them walkes forth obedient Juliet. Arrived in the place, when she her father saw, Of whom, as much as duety would, the daughter stoode in awe, The seryantes sent away (the mother thought it meete), The wofull daughter all bewept fell groveling at his feete, Which she doth wash with teares as she thus groveling lyes; So fast and eke so plenteously distill they from her eyes When she to call for grace her mouth doth thinke to open, Muet she is ; for sighes and sols her fearefull talke have broken.
The syre, whose swelling wroth her teares could not asswage, With fiery eyen, and skarlet cheekes, thus spake her in his rage (Whilst ruthfully stood by the maydens mother mylde): “ Listen (quoth he) unthankfull and thou disobedient childe; Hast thou so soone let slip out of thy mynde the woord, That thou so often times hast heard rehearsed at my boord ? How much the Romayne youth of parentes stoode in awe, And eke what powre upon theyr seede the parentes had by
Whom they not onely might pledge, alienate, and sell,
Even by his strength I sweare, that fyrst did geve me lyfe,
breath. Advise thee well, and say that thou are warned now, And thinke not that I speake in sporte, or mynde to break my
vowe. For were it not that I to Counte Paris gave My fayth, which I must keepe unfalst, my honor so to save, Ere thou go hence, my selfe would see thee chastned so, That thou shouldst once for all be taught thy dutie how to knowe; And what revenge of olde the angry syres did fynde Agaynst theyre children that rebeld, and shewd them selfe un
kinde.” These sayde, the olde man straight is gone in haste away; Ne for his daughters aunswere would the testy father stay. And after him his wyfe doth follow out of doore, And there they leave theyr chidden childe kneeling upon the
floore, Then she that oft had seene the fury of her syre. Dreading what might come of his rage, nould farther styrre his
yre. Unto her chaumber she withdrew her selfe aparte, Where she was wonted to unlode the sorrows of her hart. There did she not so much busy her eyes in sleping, As (overprest with restles thoughts) in piteous booteless weep
ing. The fast falling of teares make not her teares decrease, Ne, by the powring forth of playnt, the cause of plaint to cease. So that to thend the mone and sorow may decaye, The best is that she seeke somme meane to take the cause away. Her wery bed betyme the woful wight forsakes, And to saint Frauncis church, to masse, her way devoutly takes. The fryer forth is calde; she prayes him heare her shrift; Devotion is in so young yeres a rare and pretious gyft. When on her tender knees the daynty lady kneeles, In mynde to powre foorth all the greefe that inwardly she feeles, With sighes and salted teares her shriving doth beginne, For she of heaped sorrowes hath to speake, and not of sinne.
Her voyce with piteous playnt was made already horce,
When thys her heavy tale was told, her vowe eke at an ende, Her gasing here and there, her feerce and staring looke, Did witnes that some lewd attempt her hart had undertooke. Whereat the fryer astonde, and gastfully afrayde Lest she by dede perfourme her woord, thus much to her he
sayde: “ Ah! Lady Juliet, what nede the wordes you spake ? I pray you, graunt me one request, for blessed Maries sake. Measure somewhat your greefe, hold here a while your peace, Whilst I bethinke me of your case, your plaint and sorowes cease. Such comfort will I geve you, ere you part from hence, And for thassaults of Fortunes yre prepare so sure defence, So holesome salve will I for your afflictions fynde, That you shall hence depart againe with well contented mynde." His wordes have chased straight out of her hart despayre, Her blacke and ougly dredfull thoughts by hope are waxen fayre. So fryer Lawrence now hath left her there alone, And he out of the church in haste is to the chaumber gonne; Where sundry thoughtes within his carefull head aryse; The old mans foresight divers doutes hath set before his eyes. His conscience one while condemns it for a sinne To let her take Paris to spouse, since he him selfe hath byn The chefest cause that she unknown to father or to mother, Nor five monthes past, in that selfe place was wedded to another. An other while an hugy heape of daungers dred His restles thoughts hath heaped up within his troubled hed. Even of itselfe thattempte he judgeth perilous ; The execution eke he demes so much more daungerous, That to a womans grace he must him selfe commit, That yong is, simple and unware, for waighty affayres unfit.