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* O, lightsome Day, the lampe of highest love, And, in the midst thereof, one pretious stone
Like Hesperus emongst the lesser lights,
Both glorious brightnesse and great terrour bredd: Thrise did she sinkr adowne in deadly swound, For all the crest a dragon did enfold And thrise be her reviv'd with busie paine.
With greedie pawes, and over all did spredd At last when L fe recover'd had the raine,
His golden winges; his dreadfull hideous hedd, And Grer-wrestled his strong enimy,
Close couched on the bever, seemd to throw With foltring tonz, and trenbling everie vaine, From flaming mouth bright sparckles fiery redd, * Tell on," quoth she, “the wofull tragedy, That suddeine horrour to faint hartes did shuw; The which these reliques sad present unto mine eye: And scaly tayle was stretcht adowne his back full
low. * Tempestuous Fortune hath spent all her spight, And thrilling Sorrow thruwne his utmost dart: ['pon the top of all his loftie crest, Thy sad tong cannot tell more heavy plight A bounch of heares discolourd diversly, Then that I fee'e, and barbour in mine hart: With sprincled pearle and gold full richly drest, Who hath endurd the whole, can beare ech part. Did shake, and seemd to daunce for iollity; If death it be; it is not the first wound,
Like to an almond tree ymounted hye That launched bath my brest with bleeding smart. On top of greeve Selinis all alone, Begin, and end the bitter balefull stound;
With blossoms brave bedecked dainti!y ; Flesse then that I feare, more favour I have found.” Whose tender locks do tremble every one
At everie little breath, that under Heaven is blowne. Then gan the dwarfe the whole discourse declare; The subtile traines of Archimago old;
His warlike shield all closely cover'd was, The wanton loves of false Fidessa fayre,
Ne might of mortall eye be ever seene; Bought with the blood of vanquisbt Paynim bold ; Not made of steele, nor of enduring bras, The wretched payre transformd to reën mould ; (Such earthly mettals soon consumed beene) The House of Pryde, and perilles round about; But all of diamond perfect pure and cleene The combat, which he with Sansioy did bould; It framed was, one massy entire mould, The lucklesse conflict with the gyaunt stout, Hew'n out of adamant rocke with engines keene, Whereia captívd, of life or death he stood in doubt. That point of speare it never percen could,
Ne dint of direfull sword divide the substance would. She heard with patience all unto the end; And strore to maister sorrowfull assay,
The same to wight he never wont disclose, Which greater grew, the more she did contend, But whenas monsters huge he would dismay, And almost rent her tender bart in tway;
Or daunt unequall armies of his foes, And love fresh coles unto her fire did lay:
Or when the flying Heavens he would affray: For greater love, the greater is the losse.
For so exceeding shune his glistring ray, Was never lady loved dearer day
That Phæbus golden face it did attaint, Theo she did love the knight of the Redcrosse; As when a cloud bis beames both over-lay; For whose deare sake so many troubles her did tosse. And silver Cynthia wexed pale and faynt, (straint.
As when her face is staynd with magicke arts conAt last when fervent sorrow slaked was, She up arose, resolving him to find
No magicke arts hereof bad any might, Alive or dead; and forward forth doth pas, Nor bloody wordes of bold enchaunters call; All as the dwarfe the way to her assynd;
But all that was not such as seemd in sight And evermore, in constant carefull mind,
Before that shield did fade, and suddeine fall: She fedd her wound with fresh renewed bale: And, when him list the raskall routes appall, long tost with stormes, and bet with bitter wind, Men into stones therewith he could transmew, High over hills, and love adowne the dale, [vale. And stones to dust, and dust to nought at all: She wandred many a wood, and measurd many a And, when him list the prouder lookes subdew,
He would them gazing blind, or turne to other hew. At last she chaunced by good hap to meet A goodly knight, faire marching by the way, Ne let it seeme that credence this exceedes; Togetber with his squyre, arrayed meet:
For he, that made the same, was knowne right well His glitterand armour sbined far away,
To have done much more admirable deedes: Like glauncing light of Phoebus brightest ray; It Merlin was, which whylome did excell From top to toe no place appeared bare,
All living wightes in might of magicke spell: That deadly dint of steele endanger may:
Both shield, and sword, and armour all he wrought Athwart his brest a bauldrick brave he ware, For this young prince, when first to armes he fell; That shind, like twinkling stars, with stones most But, when he dyde, the Faery queene it brought pretious rare;
To Faerie lond; where yet it may be seene, if sought. A gentle youth, his dearely loved squire,
« Till that their cruell cursed enemy, His speare of heben wood behind him bare, An huge great dragon, horrible in sight, Whose harmeful head, thrise heated in the fire, Bred in the loathly lakes of Tartary, Had riven many a brest with pikehead square; With murdrous ravine, and devouring might, A goodly person; and could menage faire Their kingdome spoild, and countrey wasted quight: His stubborne steed with curbed canon bitt, Themselves, for feare into his iawes to fall, Who under him did trample as the aire,
He forst to casile strong to take their flight; And chauft, that any on his backe should sitt ; Where, fast embard in mighty brasen wall, [thrall. The yron rowels into frothy fome he bitt.
He has them now fowr years besiegd to make them Whenas this knight nigh to the lady drew,
“ Full many knights, adventurous and stout, With lovely court be gan her entertaine;
Have enterpriz'd that monster to subdew: But, when he heard her aunswers loth, he knew
From every coast, that Heaven walks about, Some secret sorrow did her heart distraine :
Have thither come the noble martial crew, Which to allay, and calme ber storming paine, That famous harde atchievements still pursew; Faire feeling words he wisely gan display,
Yet never any could that girlond win, And, for ber humor fitting purpose faine,
But all still shronke; and still he greater grew: To tempt the cause it selfe for to bewray; (to say;
All they for want of faith, or guilt of sin, Wherewith enmovd, these bleeding words she gan The pitteous pray of his fiers cruelty have bin. “ What worlds delight, or ioy of living speach, Can hart, so plingd in sea of sorrowes deep,
“ At last, yled with far reported praise, And heaped with so huge misfortunes, reach?
Which flying fame throughout the world had spred, The carefull Cold beginneth for to creep,
Of doughty knights, whom Pary land did raise, And in my heart his yron arrow steep,
That noble order hight of Maidenhed, Soone as I thinke upon my bitter bale.
Forthwith to court of Gloriane I sped, Such helplesse harmes yts better hidden keep,
Of Gloriane, great queene of glory bright, Then rip up griefe, where it may not availe;
Whose kingdomes seat Clevpolis is red; My last left comfort is my woes to weepe and waile." There to obtaine some such redoubted knight,
That parents deare from tyrants powre deliver might. “Ah, lady deare,” quoth then the gentle knight, “ Well may I ween your griefe is wondrous great; “ Yt was my chaunce (my chaunce was faire and For wondrous great griefe groneth in my spright, There for to find a fresh unproved knight; (good) Whiles thus I heare you of your sorrowes treat. Whose manly hands imbrewd in guilty blood But, woefull lady, let me you intrete
Had never beene, ne ever by his might For to unfold the anguish of your hart:
Had throwne to ground the unregarded right: Mishaps are maistred by advice discrete,
Yet of his prowesse proofe he since hath made And counsell mitigates the greatest smart; (I witnes am) in many a cruell fight; Found never help, who never would his hurts impart.” The groning ghosts of many one dismaide “O! but,” quoth she, "great griefe will not be tould,
Have felt the bitter dint of his avenging blade. And can more easily be thought then said.” “ Right so," quoth he;." but he, that never would, His biting Sword, and his devouring Speare,
“ And ye, the forlorne reliques of his powre, Could never: will to might gives greatest aid.”
Which have endured many a dreadfull stowre, “But griefe,” quoth she, “ does greater grow dis- Can speake his prowesse, that did earst you beare, plaid,
And well could rule; now he hath left you heare If then it find not helpe, and breeds despaire.”
To be the record of bis ruefull losse, “ Despaire breeds not," quoth he, " where faith is
And of my dolefull disaventurous deare: staid.”
[paire.” O heavie record of the good Redcrosse, “ No faith so fast," quoth she, “but flesh does “ Flesh may empaire,” quoth he, " but reason can
Where have ye left your lord, that could so well repaire.”
you tosse ? His goodly reason, and well-guided speach, “ Well hoped I, and faire beginnings had, So deepe did settle in her gracious thought,
That he my captive languor should redeeme: That her perswaded to disclose the breach
Till all unweeting an enchaunter bad
His sence abusd, and made him to misdeeme
That rather death desire then such despight.
Be judge, ye Heavens, that all things right esteeme, Or that your prowesse cau me yield reliefe ; [briefe. How I him lov'd, and love with all my might ! Then heare the story sad, which I shall tell you
So thought I eke of him, and think I thought aright. “ 'The forlorne maiden, whom your eies have seene “ Thenceforth me desolate he quite forsooke, The laughing stocke of Fortunes mockeries, To wander, where wilde Fortune would me lead, Am th’onely daughter of a king and queene, And other bywaies he himselfe betooke, Whose parents deare (whiles equal destinies Where never foote of living wight did tread, Did ronne about, and their felicities
That brought not backe the balefull body dead; The favourable Heavens did not envy)
In which him chaunced false Duessa meete, Did spred their rule through all the territories, Mine onely foe, mine onely deadly dread ; Which Phison and Euphrates floweth by,
Who with her witchcraft, and misseeming sweete, And Gehons golden waves doe wash continually: Inveigled him to follow her desires unmeete.
" At last, by subtile sleights she him betraid The same before the geaunts gate he blew, Unto his foe, a gyaunt huge and tall;
That all the castle quaked from the grownd, Who bim disarmed, dissolute, dismaid,
And every dore of free-will open flew. Unwares surprised, and with mighty mall
The gvaunt selfe dismaied with tbat sownd, The monster mercilesse him made to fall,
Where he with his Duessa dalliaunce fownd, Whose fall did never foe before behold :
In hast came rushing forth from inner bowre, And now in darkesome dungeon, wretched thrall, With staring countenaunce sterne, as one astownd, Remédilesse, for aie he doth him hold: (told." | And staggering steps, to weet what suddein stowre This is my cause of griefe, more great then may be Had wrought that horror strange, and dard his
dreaded powre. Ere she had ended all, she gan to faint :
And after him the proud Duessa came, Bat he her comforted, and faire bespake;
High mounted on her many-headed beast; “ Certes, madáme, ye have great cause of plaint,
And every head with fyrie tongue did fame, That stoutest heart, I weene, could cause to quake.
And every head was crowned on his creast, But be of cheare, and comfort to you take;
And bloody mouthed with late cruell feast. For, till I have acquit your captive knight,
That when the knight bebeld, his mightie shild Assure your selfe, I will you not forsake." His chearefull words reviv'd her chearelesse spright: Upon his manly arme he soone addrest, So forth they went, the dwarfe them guiding ever
And at bim fiersly flew, with corage fild,
And eger greedinesse through every member thrild.
And lifting up his dreadfull club on hight,
All armd w th ragg d snubbes and knottie graine,
Him thought at first encounter to have slaine. Faire virgin, to redeeme her deare,
But wise and wary was that noble pere;
And, lightly leaping from so monstrous maine, Who slayes the gyaunt, wounds the beast,
Dd fayre avoide the violence him nere; [beare; And strips Duessa quight.
It boo ed nought to thinke such thunderbolts to Ay me, how many perils doe enfold
Ne shame he thought to shonne so hideous might: The righteous man, to make him daily fall, The ydle stroke, enforcing furious way, Were not that heavenly grace doth him uphold, Missing the marke of his misaymed sight, And stedfast Truth acquite him out of all!
Did fall to ground, and with his heavy sway Her love is firme, her care continuall,
So deepely dinted in the driven clay, So oft as he, through his own foolish pride That three yardes deepe a furrow up did throw : Or weaknes, is to sinfull bands made thrall : The sad earth, wounded with so sore assay, Els should this redcrosse knight in bands have dyde, Did grope full grievous underneath the blow; For whose deliverance she this prince doth thether And, trembling with strange feare, did like an erthguys.
quake show. They sadly traveild thus, untill they came
As when almightie love, in wrathfull mood, Nigh to a castle builded strong and hye:
To wreake the guilt of mortall sins is bent, Then cryde the dwarfe, “ Lo yonder is the same, Enrold in flames, and smouldring dreriment,
Hurles forth his thundring dart with deadly food, In which my lord, my liege, doth lucklesse ly Thrall to that gyaunts hatefull tyranny :
Through riven cloudes and molten firmament; Therefore, deare sir, your mightie powres assay." Both loftie towres and highest trees hath rent,
The fiers threeforked engin, making way,
And all that might bis angry passage stay; (clay. To see what end of fight should him befall that day. And, shooting in the earth, castes up a mount of
His boystrous club, so buried in the grownd, So with his squire, th' admirer of his might,
He could not rearen up againe so light, He marched forth towardes that castle wall; But that the knight him at advantage fownd; Whose gates he fownd fast shutt, ne living wight And, whiles he strove his combred clubbe to quight To warde the same, nor answere commers call.
Out of the earth, with blade all burning bright Then tooke that squire an borne of bugle small, He smott off bis left arme, which like a block Which hong adowne his side in twisted gold Did fail to ground, depriv'd of native might; And tasselles gay; wyde wonders over all
Large streames blood out of the truncked stock Of that same hornes great vertues weren told,
Forth gushed, like fresh-water streame from riven Which bad approved bene in uses manifold.
rocke. Was never wight that heard that shrilling sownd, Dismayed with so desperate deadly wound, But trembling feare did feel in every vaine:
And eke impatient of unwonted payne, Three miles it might be easy heard arownd, He lowdly brayd with beastly yelling sownd, And ecchoes three aunswer'd it selfe againe: That all the fieldes rebellowed againe: No faulse enchauntment, nor deceiptfull traine, As great a noyse, as when in Cymbrian plaine Might once abide the terror of that blast, An heard of bulles, whom kindiy rage doth sting, But presently was void and wholly vaine : Doe for the milky mothers want complaine, No gate so strong, no locke so firme and fast, And fill the fieldes with troublous bellowing: (ring. But with that percing noise flew open quite, or brast. The neighbor woods arownd with hollow murmur
That when his deare Duessa heard, and saw And in his fall his shield, that covered was,
Did loose bis vele by chaunce, and open flew; Unto his ai le she hastily did draw
The light whereof, that Herens light did pas, Her dreadfull beast; who, swo'ne with blood of late, Such blazing brightnesse through the ayer threw, Came rainping forth with proud presumpteous gale, That eye mote not the same endure to vew. And threarned all his heades like faming brandes Which when the gyaunt spyde with staring eye, But him the quire made quickly to retrate, He downe let fall his arme, and soft withdrew Encountring fiers with single sword in hand; His weapon huge, that heaved was on hye [lye. And twixt him and his lord did like a bulwarkestand. For to have slain the man, that on the ground did
The prond Duessa, full of wrathfull spight
And eke the fruitfull-beaded beast, amazd And fiers disdaine, to be affronted so,
At flashing beames of that sunshiny shield, Enforst her purple beast with all her might, Became stark blind, and all his sences dazd, That stop out of the way to overthree,
That downe he tumbled on the durtie field, Scorn og the let of so unequall fne:
And seemd himselfe as conquered to yield. But nathënore would that corage us swayne
Whom when his maistresse proud perceiv'd to fall, To her yeeld passage, gainst his lord to goe; Whiles yet his feeble feet for faintnesse reeld, But with outrageous strokes did him restraine, Unto the gyaunt lowdly she gan call; And with his body bard the way atwixt them twaine. “O! helpe, Orgoglio; helpe, or els we perish all." Then tooke the angry witch her golden cup,
At her so pitteous cry was much amoov'd Which still she bore, replete with magick artes;
Her champion stout; and, for to ayde his frend, Death and despeyre did many thereof sup,
Againe his wonted angry weapon proov'd, And secret poyson through their inner partes; But all in vaine ; for be has redd his end Th' eternall bale of heavie wounded harts:
In that bright shield, and all their forces spend Which, afterc armes and some enchauntments said, Themselves in vaine: for, since that glauncing sight, She lightiy sprinkled on bis weaker partes : He hath no powre to hurt, nor to defend. Therewith bis sturdie corage soon was quayd, As where th' Almighties lightning brond does light, And all his sences were with suddein dread dismayd. It dimmes the dazed eyen, and daunts the sences
quight. So downe he fell before the cruell beast, Who on bis neck his bloody clawes did seize,
Whom when the prince, to batteill new addrest That life nigh crusht out of his panting brest :
And threatning high his dreadfull stroke, did see, No porre he had to stirre, nor will to rize. His sparkling blade about his head be blest, That when the carefull knight gan well avise,
And smote off quite his left leg by the knee, He lightly left the foe with whom he fought,
That downe he tombled; as an aged tree, And to the beast gan turne his enterprise;
High growing on the top of rocky clift, For wondrous anguish in his hart it wrought,
Whose hart-strings with keene steele nigh hewen be; To see his loved squyre into such thraldom brought: The mightie trunck halfe rent with ragged rift
Doth roll adowne the rocks, and fall with fearefull And, high advauncing his blood-thirstie blade,
drift. Stroke one of those deformed heades so sure,
Or as a castle, reared high and round, That of his puissavnce proud ensample made;
By subtile engins and malitious slight His monstrous scalpe down to his teeth it tore,
Is undermined from the lowest ground, And that misformed shape misshaped more: And her foundation forst, and feebled quight, A sea of blood gusht from the gaping wownd, At last donne falls; and with her heaped hight That her gay garments staynd with filthy gore, Her hastie ruine does more heavie make, And overflowed all the field arownd;
And yields it selfe unto the victours might: That over shoes in blood he waded on the grownd.
Such was this gyaunts fall, that seemd to shake Thereat he rored for exceeding paine,
The stedfast globe of Earth, as it for feare did quake. That, to have heard, great horror would have bred; The knight then, lightly leaping to the pray, And scourging th' emptie ayre with his long trayne, With mortall steele him smot againe so sore, Through great impa:ience of his grieved hed, That headlesse his unweldy bodie lay, His gorgeous ryder from her loftie sted
All wallowd in his owne fowle bloody gore, Would bave cast downe, and trodd in durty myre, which flowed from his wounds in wondrous store. Had not the gyaunt soone her succou ved ;
But, soone as breath out of his brest did pas, Who, all enrag'd with smart and frantick yre, (tyre. That huge great body, which the gyaunt bore, Camc burtling in full fiers, and forst the knight re- Was vanisht quite; and of that monstrous mas
Was nothing left, but like an emptie blader was. The force, which wont in two to be disperst, In one alone left hand he now unites, [erst; | Whose grievous fall when false Duessa spyde, Which is through rage more strong than both were Her golden cup she cast unto the ground, With which his hideous club aloft he dites,
And crowned mitre rudely threw asyde: And at his foe with furious rigor smites,
Such percing griefe her stubborne hart did wound, That strongest oake might seeme to overthrow: That she could not endure that dolefull stound; The stroke upon his shield so heavie lites,
But, leaving all behind her, fled away: That to the ground it doubleth him full low:- The light-foot squire her quickly turnd around, What mortall wight could ever beare so monstrous And, by bard meanes enforcivg her to stay, blow?
So brought unto his lord, as his deserved pray.
The roiall virgin which beheld from farre, Then asked he, which way he in might pas : In pensive plight and sad perplexitie,
He could not tell, againe he answered. The mbole atchievement of this doubtfull warre, Thereat the courteous knight displeased was, Came running fast to greet his victorie,
And said; “ O'd syre, it seemes thou hast not red With sober gladnesse and myld modestie;
How ill it sits with that same silver hed, And, with sweet ioyons cheare, him thus bespake: In vaine to mocke, or mockt in vaine to bee: * Fayre braunch of noblesse, flowre of chevalrie, But if thou be, as thou art pourtrahed That with your worth the world amazed make, With Natures pen, in ages grare degree, How shall I quite the paynes, ye suffer for my sake? Aread in graver wise what I demaund of thee.” " And you, fresh budd of vertue springing fast, His answere likewise was, He could not tell. Whom these sad eyes saw nigh unto Deaths dore, Whose sencelesse speach, and dotrd ignorance, What hath poore virgin for such perill past Whenas the noble prince had marked well, Wherewith you to reward ? Accept therefore He ghest his nature by his countenance; My simple selfe, and service evermore.
And calm'd his wrath with goodly temperance. And He that high does sit, and all things see Then, to him stepping, from his arme d'd reache With equall eye, their merites to restore,
Those keyes, and made himselfe free enterance. Bebold what ye this day have done for mee; Each dore he opened without any breach: And, what I cannot quite, requite with usuree! There was no barre to stop, nor foe him to empeach. “But sith the Heavens, and your faire handeling, There all within full rich arayd he found, Have made you master of the field this day; With royall arras, and resplendent gold, Your fortune maister eke with governing,
And did with store of every thing abound, And, well begonne, end all so well, I pray ! That greatest princes presence inight behold. Ne let that wicked woman scape away;
But all the Hoore (too filthy to be told) For she it is, that did my lord bethrall,
With blood of guiltlesse babes, and innocents trew, My dearest lord, and deepe in dongeon lay; Which there were slaine, as sheepe ont of the fuld, Where he his better dayes hath wasted all: Defiled was; that dreadfull was to vew; O heare, how piteous he to you for ayd does call!" And sacred ashes over it was strowed new, Forthwith he gave in charge unto his squyre, And there beside of marble stone was built That scarlot whore to keepen carefully;
An altare, carv'd with cunning ymagery; Whyles he himselfe with greedie great desyre On which trew Christians blood was often spilt, Into the castle entred forcibly,
And holy martyres often doen to dye, Where living creature none he did espye:
With cruell malice and strong tyranny : Then gan he lowdly through the house to call; Whose blessed sprites, from underneath the stone, But no man car'd to answere to his crye:
To God for vengeance cryde continually; There raignd a solemne silence over all;
And with great griefe were often heard to grone; Nor voice was heard, nor wight was seene in bowre That hardest heart would bleede to hear their pite.
or hall! At last, with creeping crooked pace forth came Through every rowme he sought, and everie bowr; An old old man, with beard as white as snow; But no where conld he find that wofull thrall. That on a staffe his feeble steps did frame,
At last he came unto an vron doore, And guyde his wearie gate both too and fro; That fast was lockt; but key found not at all For his eye sight him fayled long ygo :
Einongst that bounch to open it withall; And on his arme a bounch of keyes he bore, But in the same a little grate was pight, The which unased rust did overgrow :
Through which he sent his vovce, and lowd did call Those were the keyes of every inner dore ; (store. With all his powre, to weet if living wight But he could not them use, but kept them still in Were housed therewithin, whom he enlargen might. Bat very úncouth sight was to behold,
Therewith an hollow, dreary, murmuring voyce How he did fashion bis untoward pace;
These pitteous plaintes and dolours did resound; For as be forward moov'd his footing old,
“O! who is that, which bringes me happy choyce So backward still was turnd his wrincled face: Of death, that here lye dying every stound, Unlike to men, who ever, as they trace,
Yet live perforce in balefull darknesse bound? Both feet and face one way are wont to lead. For now three moones have changed thrice their hew, This was the auncient keeper of that place,
And have been thrice hid underneath the ground, And foster father of the gyaunt dead;
Since I the Heavens chearefull face did vew: [trew." His name Ignaro did his nature right aread. O welcome, thou, that doest of death bring tydings His reverend heares and holy gravitee
Which when that champion heard, with percing The knight much honord, as beseemed well; Of pitty deare his hart was thrilled sore; [point And gently askt, where all the people bee, And trembling horrour ran through every ioynt, Which in that stately building wont to dwell: For ruth of gentie knight so fowle forlore : Who answerd him full soft, He could not tell. Which shaking off, he rent that yron dore Again he askt, where that same knight was layd, With furious force and indignation fell; Whom great Orgoglio with his puissance fell Where entred in, his font could find no flore, Had made his caytive thrall: againe he sayde, But all a de pe descent, as dark as Hell, He could not tell; ne ever other answere made. That breathed ever forth a tilthie banefull smell.