Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE FAERIE QUEENE: BOOK 2, CANTOS 4-6, by EDMUND SPENSER



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THE FAERIE QUEENE: BOOK 2, CANTOS 4-6, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Guyon does furor bind in chaines
Last Line: And him restor'd to helth, that would have algates dyde.
Alternate Author Name(s): Clout, Colin


CANTO IV

Guyon does Furor bind in chaines,
And stops Occasion:
Delivers Phedon, and therefore
By Strife is rayld uppon.

I

IN brave poursuitt of honorable deed,
There is I know not what great difference
Betweene the vulgar and the noble seed,
Which unto things of valorous pretence
Seemes to be borne by native influence;
As feates of armes, and love to entertaine;
But chiefly skill to ride seemes a science
Proper to gentle blood: some others faine
To menage steeds, as did this vaunter; but in vaine.

II

But he, the rightfull owner of that steede,
Who well could menage and subdew his pride,
The whiles on foot was forced for to yeed,
With that blacke palmer, his most trusty guide,
Who suffred not his wandring feete to slide;
But when strong passion, or weake fleshlinesse,
Would from the right way seeke to draw him wide,
He would, through temperaunce and stedfastnesse,
Teach him the weak to strengthen, and the strong suppresse.

III

It fortuned, forth faring on his way,
He saw from far, or seemed for to see,
Some troublous uprore or contentious fray,
Whereto he drew in hast, it to agree.
A mad man, or that feigned mad to bee,
Drew by the heare along upon the grownd
A handsom stripling with great crueltee,
Whom sore he bett, and gor'd with many a wownd,
That cheekes with teares, and sydes with blood did all abownd.

IV

And him behynd, a wicked hag did stalke,
In ragged robes and filthy disaray:
Her other leg was lame, that she no'te walke,
But on a staffe her feeble steps did stay:
Her lockes, that loathly were and hoarie gray,
Grew all afore, and loosly hong unrold,
But all behinde was bald, and worne away,
That none thereof could ever taken hold,
And eke her face ill favourd, full of wrinckles old.

V

And ever as she went, her toung did walke
In fowle reproch and termes of vile despight,
Provoking him, by her outrageous talke,
To heape more vengeance on that wretched wight;
Somtimes she raught him stones, wherwith to smite,
Sometimes her staffe, though it her one leg were,
Withouten which she could not goe upright;
Ne any evill meanes she did forbeare,
That might him move to wrath, and indignation reare.

VI

The noble Guyon, mov'd with great remorse,
Approching, first the hag did thrust away,
And after, adding more impetuous forse,
His mighty hands did on the madman lay,
And pluckt him backe; who, all on fire streight way,
Against him turning all his fell intent,
With beastly brutish rage gan him assay,
And smott, and bitt, and kickt, and scratcht, and rent,
And did he wist not what in his avengement.

VII

And sure he was a man of mickle might,
Had he had governaunce, it well to guyde:
But when the frantick fitt inflamd his spright,
His force was vaine, and strooke more often wyde
Then at the aymed marke which he had eyde:
And oft himselfe he chaunst to hurt unwares,
Whylest reason, blent through passion, nought descryde,
But as a blindfold bull at randon fares,
And where he hits, nought knowes, and whom he hurts, nought cares.

VIII

His rude assault and rugged handeling
Straunge seemed to the knight, that aye with foe
In fayre defence and goodly menaging
Of armes was wont to fight; yet nathemoe
Was he abashed now, not fighting so,
But, more enfierced through his currish play,
Him sternly grypt, and, hailing to and fro,
To overthrow him strongly did assay,
But overthrew him selfe unwares, and lower lay.

IX

And being downe, the villein sore did beate
And bruze with clownish fistes his manly face;
And eke the hag, with many a bitter threat,
Still cald upon to kill him in the place.
With whose reproch and odious menace
The knight emboyling in his haughtie hart,
Knitt all his forces, and gan soone unbrace
His grasping hold: so lightly did upstart,
And drew his deadly weapon, to maintaine his part.

X

Which when the palmer saw, he loudly cryde,
'Not so, O Guyon, never thinke that so
That monster can be maistred or destroyd:
He is not, ah! he is not such a foe,
As steele can wound, or strength can overthroe.
That same is Furor, cursed cruel wight,
That unto knighthood workes much shame and woe;
And that same hag, his aged mother, hight
Occasion, the roote of all wrath and despight.

XI

'With her, who so will raging Furor tame,
Must first begin, and well her amenage:
First her restraine from her reprochfull blame
And evill meanes, with which she doth enrage
Her frantick sonne, and kindles his corage;
Then, when she is withdrawne, or strong withstood,
It's eath his ydle fury to aswage,
And calme the tempest of his passion wood:
The bankes are overflowne, when stopped is the flood.'

XII

Therewith Sir Guyon left his first emprise,
And turning to that woman, fast her hent
By the hoare lockes that hong before her eyes,
And to the ground her threw: yet n' ould she stent
Her bitter rayling and foule revilement,
But still provokt her sonne to wreake her wrong;
But nathelesse he did her still torment,
And catching hold of her ungratious tonge,
Thereon an yron lock did fasten firme and strong.

XIII

Then whenas use of speach was from her reft,
With her two crooked handes she signes did make,
And beckned him, the last help she had left:
But he that last left helpe away did take,
And both her handes fast bound unto a stake,
That she note stirre. Then gan her sonne to flye
Full fast away, and did her quite forsake;
But Guyon after him in hast did hye,
And soone him overtooke in sad perplexitye.

XIV

In his strong armes he stifly him embraste,
Who, him gainstriving, nought at all prevaild:
For all his power was utterly defaste,
And furious fitts at earst quite weren quaild:
Oft he re'nforst, and oft his forces fayld,
Yet yield he would not, nor his rancor slack.
Then him to ground he cast, and rudely hayld,
And both his hands fast bound behind his backe,
And both his feet in fetters to an yron rack.

XV

With hundred yron chaines he did him bind,
And hundred knots, that did him sore constraine:
Yet his great yron teeth he still did grind,
And grimly gnash, threatning revenge in vaine:
His burning eyen, whom bloody strakes did staine,
Stared full wide, and threw forth sparkes of fyre,
And more for ranck despight then for great paine,
Shakt his long locks, colourd like copperwyre,
And bitt his tawny beard to shew his raging yre.

XVI

Thus whenas Guyon Furor had captivd,
Turning about he saw that wretched squyre,
Whom that mad man of life nigh late deprivd,
Lying on ground, all soild with blood and myre:
Whom whenas he perceived to respyre,
He gan to comfort, and his woundes to dresse.
Being at last recured, he gan inquyre,
What hard mishap him brought to such distresse,
And made that caytives thrall, the thrall of wretchednesse.

XVII

With hart then throbbing, and with watry eyes,
'Fayre sir,' quoth he, 'what man can shun the hap,
That hidden lyes unwares him to surpryse?
Misfortune waites advantage to entrap
The man most wary in her whelming lap.
So me, weake wretch, of many weakest one,
Unweeting, and unware of such mishap,
She brought to mischiefe through occasion,
Where this same wicked villein did me light upon.

XVIII

'It was a faithlesse squire, that was the sourse
Of all my sorrow, and of these sad teares,
With whom from tender dug of commune nourse
Attonce I was upbrought, and eft, when yeares
More rype us reason lent to chose our peares,
Our selves in league of vowed love wee knitt:
In which we long time, without gealous feares
Or faultie thoughts, contynewd, as was fitt;
And, for my part I vow, dissembled not a whitt.

XIX

'It was my fortune, commune to that age,
To love a lady fayre of great degree,
The which was borne of noble parentage,
And set in highest seat of dignitee,
Yet seemd no lesse to love then loved to bee:
Long I her serv'd, and found her faithfull still,
Ne ever thing could cause us disagree:
Love, that two harts makes one, makes eke one will:
Each strove to please, and others pleasure to fulfill.

XX

'My friend, hight Philemon, I did partake
Of all my love and all my privitie;
Who greatly joyous seemed for my sake,
And gratious to that lady, as to mee;
Ne ever wight, that mote so welcome bee
As he to her, withouten blott or blame,
Ne ever thing, that she could thinke or see,
But unto him she would impart the same:
O wretched man, that would abuse so gentle dame!

XXI

'At last such grace I found, and meanes I wrought,
That I that lady to my spouse had wonne;
Accord of friendes, consent of parents sought,
Affyaunce made, my happinesse begonne,
There wanted nought but few rites to be donne,
Which mariage make: that day too farre did seeme:
Most joyous man on whom the shining sunne
Did shew his face, my selfe I did esteeme,
And that my falser friend did no lesse joyous deeme.

XXII

'But ear that wished day his beame disclosd,
He, either envying my toward good,
Or of himselfe to treason ill disposd,
One day unto me came in friendly mood,
And told for secret, how he understood,
That lady, whom I had to me assynd,
Had both distaind her honorable blood,
And eke the faith which she to me did bynd;
And therfore wisht me stay, till I more truth should fynd.

XXIII

'The gnawing anguish and sharp gelosy,
Which his sad speach infixed in my brest,
Ranckled so sore, and festred inwardly,
That my engreeved mind could find no rest,
Till that the truth thereof I did out wrest;
And him besought, by that same sacred band
Betwixt us both, to counsell me the best.
He then with solemne oath and plighted hand
Assurd, ere long the truth to let me understand.

XXIV

'Ere long with like againe he boorded mee,
Saying, he now had boulted all the floure,
And that it was a groome of base degree,
Which of my love was partener paramoure:
Who used in a darkesome inner bowre
Her oft to meete: which better to approve,
He promised to bring me at that howre,
When I should see that would me nearer move,
And drive me to withdraw my blind abused love.

XXV

'This gracelesse man, for furtherance of his guile,
Did court the handmayd of my lady deare,
Who, glad t' embosome his affection vile,
Did all she might, more pleasing to appeare.
One day, to worke her to his will more neare,
He woo'd her thus: "Pryene," (so she hight)
"What great despight doth Fortune to thee beare,
Thus lowly to abase thy beautie bright,
That it should not deface all others lesser light?

XXVI

'"But if she had her least helpe to thee lent,
T' adorne thy forme according thy desart,
Their blazing pride thou wouldest soone have blent,
And staynd their prayses with thy least good part;
Ne should faire Claribell with all her art,
Though she thy lady be, approch thee neare:
For proofe thereof, this evening, as thou art,
Aray thy selfe in her most gorgeous geare,
That I may more delight in thy embracement deare."

XXVII

'The mayden, proud through praise and mad through love,
Him hearkned to, and soone her selfe arayd,
The whiles to me the treachour did remove
His craftie engin, and, as he had sayd,
Me leading, in a secret corner layd,
The sad spectatour of my tragedie;
Where left, he went, and his owne false part playd,
Disguised like that groome of base degree,
Whom he had feignd th' abuser of my love to bee.

XXVIII

'Eftsoones he came unto th' appointed place,
And with him brought Pryene, rich arayd,
In Claribellaes clothes. Her proper face
I not descerned in that darkesome shade,
But weend it was my love with whom he playd.
Ah God! what horrour and tormenting griefe
My hart, my handes, mine eyes, and all assayd!
Me liefer were ten thousand deathes priefe,
Then wounde of gealous worme, and shame of such repriefe.

XXIX

I home retourning, fraught with fowle despight,
And chawing vengeaunce all the way I went,
Soone as my loathed love appeard in sight,
With wrathfull hand I slew her innocent;
That after soone I dearely did lament:
For when the cause of that outrageous deede
Demaunded, I made plaine and evident,
Her faultie handmayd, which that bale did breede,
Confest how Philemon her wrought to chaunge her weede.

XXX

'Which when I heard, with horrible affright
And hellish fury all enragd, I sought
Upon my selfe that vengeable despight
To punish: yet it better first I thought,
To wreake my wrath on him that first it wrought.
To Philemon, false faytour Philemon,
I cast to pay that I so dearely bought:
Of deadly drugs I gave him drinke anon,
And washt away his guilt with guilty potion.

XXXI

'Thus heaping crime on crime, and griefe on griefe,
To losse of love adjoyning losse of frend,
I meant to purge both with a third mischiefe,
And in my woes beginner it to end:
That was Pryene; she aid first offend,
She last should smart: with which cruell intent,
When I at her my murdrous blade did bend,
She fled away with ghastly dreriment,
And I, poursewing my fell purpose, after went.

XXXII

'Feare gave her winges, and rage enforst my flight:
Through woods and plaines so long I did her chace,
Till this mad man, whom your victorious might
Hath now fast bound, me met in middle space:
As I her, so he me poursewd apace,
And shortly overtooke: I, breathing yre,
Sore chauffed at my stay in such a cace,
And with my heat kindled his cruell fyre;
Which kindled once, his mother did more rage inspyre.

XXXIII

'Betwixt them both, they have me doen to dye,
Through wounds, and strokes, and stubborne handeling,
That death were better then such agony
As griefe and fury unto me did bring;
Of which in me yet stickes the mortal sting,
That during life will never be appeasd.'
When he thus ended had his sorrowing,
Said Guyon: 'Squyre, sore have ye beene diseasd;
But all your hurts may soone through temperance be easd.'

XXXIV

Then gan the palmer thus: 'Most wretched man,
That to affections does the bridle lend!
In their beginning they are weake and wan,
But soone through suff'rance growe to fearefull end.
Whiles they are weake, betimes with them contend:
For when they once to perfect strength do grow,
Strong warres they make, and cruell battry bend
Gainst fort of reason, it to overthrow:
Wrath, gelosy, griefe, love this squyre have laide thus low.

XXXV

'Wrath, gealosie, griefe, love do thus expell:
Wrath is a fire, and gealosie a weede,
Griefe is a flood, and love a monster fell;
The fire of sparkes, the weede of little seede,
The flood of drops, the monster filth did breede:
But sparks, seed, drops, and filth do thus delay;
The sparks soone quench, the springing seed outweed,
The drops dry up, and filth wipe cleane away:
So shall wrath, gealosy, griefe, love die and decay.'

XXXVI

'Unlucky squire,' saide Guyon, 'sith thou hast
Falne into mischiefe through intemperaunce,
Henceforth take heede of that thou now hast past,
And guyde thy waies with warie governaunce,
Least worse betide thee by some later chaunce.
But read how art thou nam'd, and of what kin.'
'Phedon I hight,' quoth he, 'and do advaunce
Mine auncestry from famous Coradin,
Who first to rayse our house to honour did begin.'

XXXVII

Thus as he spake, lo! far away they spyde
A varlet ronning towardes hastily,
Whose flying feet so fast their way applyde,
That round about a cloud of dust did fly,
Which, mingled all with sweate, did dim his eye.
He soone approched, panting, breathlesse, whot,
And all so soyld, that none could him descry.
His countenaunce was bold, and bashed not
For Guyons lookes, but scornefull eyglaunce at him shot.

XXXVIII

Behind his backe he bore a brasen shield,
On which was drawen faire, in colours fit,
A flaming fire in midst of bloody field,
And round about the wreath this word was writ,
Burnt I doe burne. Right well beseemed it
To be the shield of some redoubted knight:
And in his hand two dartes exceeding flit
And deadly sharp he held, whose heads were dight
In poyson and in blood of malice and despight.

XXXIX

When he in presence came, to Guyon first
He boldly spake: 'Sir knight, if knight thou bee,
Abandon this forestalled place at erst,
For feare of further harme, I counsell thee;
Or bide the chaunce at thine owne jeopardee.'
The knight at his great boldnesse wondered,
And though he scornd his ydle vanitee,
Yet mildly him to purpose answered;
For not to grow of nought he it conjectured.

XL

'Varlet, this place most dew to me I deeme,
Yielded by him that held it forcibly.
But whence shold come that harme, which thou dost seeme
To threat to him that mindes his chaunce t' abye?'
'Perdy,' sayd he, 'here comes, and is hard by,
A knight of wondrous powre and great assay,
That never yet encountred enemy,
But did him deadly daunt, or fowle dismay;
Ne thou for better hope, if thou his presence stay.'

XLI

'How hight he then,' sayd Guyon, 'and from whence?'
'Pyrochles is his name, renowmed farre
For his bold feates and hardy confidence,
Full oft approved in many a cruell warre;
The brother of Cymochles, both which arre
The sonnes of old Acrates and Despight,
Acrates, sonne of Phlegeton and Jarre;
But Phlegeton is sonne of Herebus and Night;
But Herebus sonne of Aeternitie is hight.

XLII

'So from immortall race he does proceede,
That mortall hands may not withstand his might,
Drad for his derring doe and bloody deed:
For all in blood and spoile is his delight.
His am I Atin, his in wrong and right,
That matter make for him to worke upon,
And stirre him up to strife and cruell fight.
Fly therefore, fly this fearfull stead anon,
Least thy foolhardize worke thy sad confusion.'

XLIII

'His be that care, whom most it doth concerne,'
Sayd he: 'but whether with such hasty flight
Art thou now bownd? for well mote I discerne
Great cause, that carries thee so swifte and light.'
'My lord,' quoth he, 'me sent, and streight behight
To seeke Occasion, where so she bee:
For he is all disposd to bloody fight,
And breathes out wrath and hainous crueltee:
Hard is his hap, that first fals in his jeopardee.'

XLIV

'Mad man,' said then the palmer, 'that does seeke
Occasion to wrath, and cause of strife!
Shee comes unsought, and shonned followes eke.
Happy who can abstaine, when Rancor rife
Kindles revenge, and threats his rusty knife:
Woe never wants, where every cause is caught,
And rash Occasion makes unquiet life.'
'Then loe! wher bound she sits, whom thou hast sought,'
Said Guyon: 'let that message to thy lord be brought.'

XLV

That when the varlett heard and saw, streight way
He wexed wondrous wroth, and said: 'Vile knight,
That knights and knighthood doest with shame upbray,
And shewst th' ensample of thy childishe might,
With silly weake old woman thus to fight!
Great glory and gay spoile sure hast thou gott,
And stoutly prov'd thy puissaunce here in sight.
That shall Pyrochles well requite, I wott,
And with thy blood abolish so reprochfull blott.'

XLVI

With that, one of his thrillant darts he threw,
Headed with yre and vengeable despight:
The quivering steele his aymed end wel knew,
And to his brest it selfe intended right.
But he was wary, and, ere it empight
In the meant marke, advaunst his shield atweene,
On which it seizing, no way enter might,
But backe rebownding left the forckhead keene:
Eftsoones he fled away, and might no where be seene.

CANTO V

Pyrochles does with Guyon fight,
And Furors chayne unbinds;
Of whom sore hurt, for his revenge
Attin Cymochles finds.

I

WHO ever doth to temperaunce apply
His stedfast life, and all his actions frame,
Trust me, shal find no greater enimy,
Then stubborne perturbation, to the same;
To which right wel the wise doe give that name;
For it the goodly peace of staied mindes
Does overthrow, and troublous warre proclame:
His owne woes author, who so bound it findes,
As did Pyrochles, and it wilfully unbindes.

II

After that varlets flight, it was not long,
Ere on the plaine fast pricking Guyon spide
One in bright armes embatteiled full strong,
That as the sunny beames doe glaunce and glide
Upon the trembling wave, so shined bright,
And round about him threw forth sparkling fire,
That seemd him to enflame on every side:
His steed was bloody red, and fomed yre,
When with the maistring spur he did him roughly stire.

III

Approching nigh, he never staid to greete,
Ne chaffar words, prowd corage to provoke,
But prickt so fiers, that underneath his feete
The smouldring dust did rownd about him smoke,
Both horse and man nigh able for to choke;
And fayrly couching his steeleheaded speare,
Him first saluted with a sturdy stroke:
It booted nought Sir Guyon, comming neare,
To thincke such hideous puissaunce on foot to beare;

IV

But lightly shunned it, and passing by,
With his bright blade did smite at him so fell,
That the sharpe steele, arriving forcibly
On his broad shield, bitt not, but glauncing fell
On his horse necke before the quilted sell,
And from the head the body sundred quight.
So him, dismounted low, he did compell
On foot with him to matchen equall fight;
The truncked beast, fast bleeding, did him fowly dight.

V

Sore bruzed with the fall, he slow uprose,
And all enraged, thus him loudly shent:
'Disleall knight, whose coward corage chose
To wreake it selfe on beast all innocent,
And shund the marke at which it should be ment!
Therby thine armes seem strong, but manhood frayl:
So hast thou oft with guile thine honor blent;
But litle may such guile thee now avayl,
If wonted force and fortune doe not much me fayl.'

VI

With that he drew his flaming sword, and strooke
At him so fiercely, that the upper marge
Of his sevenfolded shield away it tooke,
And glauncing on his helmet, made a large
And open gash therein: were not his targe,
That broke the violence of his intent,
The weary sowle from thence it would discharge:
Nathelesse so sore a buff to him it lent,
That made him reele, and to his brest his bever bent.

VII

Exceeding wroth was Guyon at that blow,
And much ashamd that stroke of living arme
Should him dismay, and make him stoup so low,
Though otherwise it did him litle harme:
Tho, hurling high his yron braced arme,
He smote so manly on his shoulder plate,
That all his left side it did quite disarme;
Yet there the steele stayd not, but inly bate
Deepe in his flesh, and opened wide a red floodgate.

VIII

Deadly dismayd with horror of that dint
Pyrochles was, and grieved eke entyre;
Yet nathemore did it his fury stint,
But added flame unto his former fire,
That welnigh molt his hart in raging yre;
Ne thenceforth his approved skill, to ward,
Or strike, or hurtle rownd in warlike gyre,
Remembred he, ne car'd for his saufgard,
But rudely rag'd, and like a cruel tygre far'd.

IX

He hewd, and lasht, and foynd, and thondred blowes,
And every way did seeke into his life;
Ne plate, ne male could ward so mighty throwes,
But yeilded passage to his cruell knife.
But Guyon, in the heat of all his strife,
Was wary wise, and closely did awayt
Avauntage, whilest his foe did rage most rife:
Sometimes a thwart, sometimes he strook him strayt,
And falsed oft his blowes, t' illude him with such bayt.

X

Like as a lyon, whose imperiall powre
A prowd rebellious unicorne defyes,
T' avoide the rash assault and wrathfull stowre
Of his fiers foe, him to a tree applyes,
And when him ronning in full course he spyes,
He slips aside; the whiles that furious beast
His precious horne, sought of his enimyes,
Strikes in the stocke, ne thence can be re-least,
But to the mighty victor yields a bounteous feast.

XI

With such faire sleight him Guyon often fayld,
Till at the last all breathlesse, weary, faint
Him spying, with fresh onsett he assayld,
And kindling new his corage seeming queint,
Strooke him so hugely, that through great constraint
He made him stoup perforce unto his knee,
And doe unwilling worship to the saint,
That on his shield depainted he did see:
Such homage till that instant never learned hee.

XII

Whom Guyon seeing stoup, poursewed fast
The present offer of faire victory,
And soone his dreadfull blade about he cast,
Wherewith he smote his haughty crest so hye,
That streight on grownd made him full low to lye;
Then on his brest his victor foote he thrust:
With that he cryde: 'Mercy! doe me not dye,
Ne deeme thy force by Fortunes doome unjust,
That hath (maugre her spight!) thus low me laid in dust.'

XIII

Eftsoones his cruel hand Sir Guyon stayd,
Tempring the passion with advizement slow,
And maistring might on enimy dismayd;
For th' equall die of warre he well did know:
Then to him said: 'Live, and alleagaunce owe
To him that gives thee life and liberty,
And henceforth by this daies ensample trow,
That hasty wroth, and heedlesse hazardry,
Doe breede repentaunce late, and lasting infamy.'

XIV

So up he let him rise; who, with grim looke
And count'naunce sterne upstanding, gan to grind
His grated teeth for great disdeigne, and shooke
His sandy lockes, long hanging downe behind,
Knotted in blood and dust, for griefe of mind,
That he in ods of armes was conquered;
Yet in himselfe some comfort he did find,
That him so noble knight had maystered,
Whose bounty more then might, yet both, he wondered.

XV

Which Guyon marking said: 'Be nought agriev'd,
Sir knight, that thus ye now subdewed arre:
Was never man, who most conquestes atchiev'd,
But sometimes had the worse, and lost by warre,
Yet shortly gaynd that losse exceeded farre:
Losse is no shame, nor to bee lesse then foe,
But to bee lesser then himselfe doth marre
Both loosers lott, and victours prayse alsoe:
Vaine others overthrowes who selfe doth overthrow.

XVI

'Fly, O Pyrochles, fly the dreadfull warre,
That in thy selfe thy lesser partes doe move,
Outrageous anger, and woe working jarre,
Direfull impatience, and hartmurdring love;
Those, those thy foes, those warrious far remove,
Which thee to endlesse bale captived lead.
But sith in might thou didst my mercy prove,
Of courtesie to mee the cause aread,
That thee against me drew with so impetuous dread.'

XVII

'Dreadlesse,' said he, 'that shall I soone declare:
It was complained that thou hadst done great tort
Unto an aged woman, poore and bare,
And thralled her in chaines with strong effort,
Voide of all succour and needfull comfort:
That ill beseemes thee, such as I thee see,
To worke such shame. Therefore I thee exhort
To chaunge thy will, and set Occasion free,
And to her captive sonne yield his first libertee.'

XVIII

Thereat Sir Guyon smylde: 'And is that all,'
Said he, 'that thee so sore displeased hath?
Great mercy sure, for to enlarge a thrall,
Whose freedom shall thee turne to greatest scath!
Nath'lesse now quench thy whott emboyling wrath:
Loe! there they bee; to thee I yield them free.'
Thereat he wondrous glad, out of the path
Did lightly leape, where he them bound did see,
And gan to breake the bands of their captivitee.

XIX

Soone as Occasion felt her selfe untyde,
Before her sonne could well assoyled bee,
She to her use returnd, and streight defyde
Both Guyon and Pyrochles: th' one (said shee)
Bycause he wonne; the other because hee
Was wonne: so matter did she make of nought,
To stirre up strife, and do them disagree:
But soone as Furor was enlargd, she sought
To kindle his quencht fyre, and thousand causes wrought.

XX

It was not long ere she inflam'd him so,
That he would algates with Pyrochles fight,
And his redeemer chalengd for his foe,
Because he had not well mainteind his right,
But yielded had to that same straunger knight:
Now gan Pyrochles wex as wood as hee,
And him affronted with impatient might:
So both together fiers engrasped bee,
Whyles Guyon, standing by, their uncouth strife does see.

XXI

Him all that while Occasion did provoke
Against Pyrochles, and new matter fram'd
Upon the old, him stirring to bee wroke
Of his late wronges, in which she oft him blam'd
For suffering such abuse as knighthood sham'd,
And him dishabled quyte. But he was wise,
Ne would with vaine occasions be inflam'd;
Yet others she more urgent did devise;
Yet nothing could him to impatience entise.

XXII

Their fell contention still increased more,
And more thereby increased Furors might,
That he his foe has hurt, and wounded sore,
And him in blood and durt deformed quight.
His mother eke, more to augment his spight,
Now brought to him a flaming fyer brond,
Which she in Stygian lake, ay burning bright,
Had kindled: that she gave into his hond,
That, armd with fire, more hardly he mote him withstond.

XXIII

Tho gan that villein wex so fiers and strong,
That nothing might sustaine his furious forse:
He cast him downe to ground, and all along
Drew him through durt and myre without remorse,
And fowly battered his comely corse,
That Guyon much disdeignd so loathly sight.
At last he was compeld to cry perforse,
'Help, O Sir Guyon! helpe, most noble knight,
To ridd a wretched man from handes of hellish wight!'

XXIV

The knight was greatly moved at his playnt,
And gan him dight to succour his distresse,
Till that the palmer, by his grave restraynt,
Him stayd from yielding pitifull redresse,
And said: 'Deare sonne, thy causelesse ruth represse,
Ne let thy stout hart melt in pitty vayne:
He that his sorow sought through wilfulnesse,
And his foe fettred would release agayne,
Deserves to taste his follies fruit, repented payne.'

XXV

Guyon obayd: so him away he drew
From needlesse trouble of renewing fight
Already fought, his voyage to poursew.
But rash Pyrochles varlett, Atin hight,
When late he saw his lord in heavie plight,
Under Sir Guyons puissaunt stroke to fall,
Him deeming dead, as then he seemd in sight,
Fledd fast away, to tell his funerall
Unto his brother, whom Cymochles men did call.

XXVI

He was a man of rare redoubted might,
Famous throughout the world for warlike prayse,
And glorious spoiles, purchast in perilous fight:
Full many doughtie knightes he in his dayes
Had doen to death, subdewde in equall frayes,
Whose carkases, for terrour of his name,
Of fowles and beastes he made the piteous prayes,
And hong their conquerd armes for more defame
On gallow trees, in honour of his dearest dame.

XXVII

His dearest dame is that enchaunteresse,
The vyle Acrasia, that with vaine delightes,
And ydle pleasures in her Bowre of Blisse,
Does charme her lovers, and the feeble sprightes
Can call out of the bodies of fraile wightes;
Whom then she does trasforme to monstrous hewes,
And horribly misshapes with ugly sightes,
Captiv'd eternally in yron mewes,
And darksom dens, where Titan his face never shewes.

XXVIII

There Atin fownd Cymochles sojourning,
To serve his lemans love: for he by kynd
Was given all to lust and loose living,
When ever his fiers handes he free mote fynd:
And now he has pourd out his ydle mynd
In daintie delices and lavish joyes,
Having his warlike weapons cast behynd,
And flowes in pleasures and vaine pleasing toyes,
Mingled emongst loose ladies and lascivious boyes.

XXIX

And over him, Art, stryving to compayre
With Nature, did an arber greene dispred,
Framed of wanton yvie, flouring fayre,
Through which the fragrant eglantine did spred
His prickling armes, entrayld with roses red,
Which daintie odours round about them threw;
And all within with flowres was garnished,
That, when myld Zephyrus emongst them blew,
Did breath out bounteous smels, and painted colors shew.

XXX

And fast beside, there trickled softly downe
A gentle streame, whose murmuring wave did play
Emongst the pumy stones, and made a sowne,
To lull him soft a sleepe, that by it lay:
The wearie traveiler, wandring that way,
Therein did often quench his thristy heat,
And then by it his wearie limbes display,
Whiles creeping slomber made him to forget
His former payne, and wypt away his toilsom sweat.

XXXI

And on the other syde a pleasaunt grove
Was shott up high, full of the stately tree
That dedicated is t' Olympick Jove,
And to his sonne Alcides, whenas hee
Gaynd in Nemea goodly victoree:
Therein the mery birdes of every sorte
Chaunted alowd their chearefull harmonee,
And made emongst them selves a sweete consort,
That quickned the dull spright with musicall comfort.

XXXII

There he him found all carelesly displaid,
In secrete shadow from the sunny ray,
On a sweet bed of lillies softly laid,
Amidst a flock of damzelles fresh and gay,
That rownd about him dissolute did play
Their wanton follies and light meriment;
Every of which did loosely disaray
Her upper partes of meet habiliments,
And shewd them naked, deckt with many ornaments.

XXXIII

And every of them strove, with most delights
Him to aggrate, and greatest pleasures shew;
Some framd faire lookes, glancing like evening lights,
Others sweet wordes, dropping like honny dew;
Some bathed kisses, and did soft embrew
The sugred licour through his melting lips:
One boastes her beautie, and does yield to vew
Her dainty limbes above her tender hips;
Another her out boastes, and all for tryall strips.

XXXIV

He, like an adder lurking in the weedes,
His wandring thought in deepe desire does steepe,
And his frayle eye with spoyle of beauty feedes:
Sometimes he falsely faines himselfe to sleepe,
Whiles through their lids his wanton eies do peepe,
To steale a snatch of amorous conceipt,
Whereby close fire into his heart does creepe:
So' he them deceives, deceivd in his deceipt,
Made dronke with drugs of deare voluptuous receipt.

XXXV

Attin, arriving there, when him he spyde
Thus in still waves of deepe delight to wade,
Fiercely approching, to him lowdly cryde,
'Cymochles! oh! no, but Cymochles shade,
In which that manly person late did fade!
What is become of great Acrates sonne?
Or where hath he hong up his mortall blade,
That hath so many haughty conquests wonne?
Is all his force forlorne, and all his glory donne?'

XXXVI

Then pricking him with his sharp-pointed dart,
He saide: 'Up, up! thou womanish weake knight,
That here in ladies lap entombed art,
Unmindfull of thy praise and prowest might,
And weetlesse eke of lately wrought despight,
Whiles sad Pyrochles lies on sencelesse ground,
And groneth out his utmost grudging spright,
Through many a stroke, and many a streaming wound,
Calling thy help in vaine, that here in joyes art dround.'

XXXVII

Suddeinly out of his delightfull dreame
The man awoke, and would have questiond more;
But he would not endure that wofull theame
For to dilate at large, but urged sore,
With percing wordes and pittifull implore,
Him hasty to arise. As one affright
With hellish feends, or Furies mad uprore,
He then uprose, inflamd with fell despight,
And called for his armes; for he would algates fight.

XXXVIII

They bene ybrought; he quickly does him dight,
And, lightly mounted, passeth on his way;
Ne ladies loves, ne sweete entreaties might
Appease his heat, or hastie passage stay;
For he has vowd to beene avengd that day
(That day it selfe him seemed all too long)
On him that did Pyrochles deare dismay:
So proudly pricketh on his courser strong,
And Attin ay him pricks with spurs of shame and wrong.

CANTO VI

Guyon is of Immodest Merth
Led into loose desyre;
Fights with Cymochles, whiles his brother
burnes in furious fyre.

I

A HARDER lesson to learne continence
In joyous pleasure then in grievous paine:
For sweetnesse doth allure the weaker sence
So strongly, that uneathes it can refraine
From that which feeble nature covets faine;
But griefe and wrath, that be her enemies,
And foes of life, she better can restraine;
Yet Vertue vauntes in both her victories,
And Guyon in them all shewes goodly maysteries.

II

Whom bold Cymochles traveiling to finde,
With cruell purpose bent to wreake on him
The wrath which Atin kindled in his mind,
Came to a river, by whose utmost brim
Wayting to passe, he saw whereas did swim
Along the shore, as swift as glaunce of eye,
A litle gondelay, bedecked trim
With boughes and arbours woven cunningly,
That like a litle forrest seemed outwardly.

III

And therein sate a lady fresh and fayre,
Making sweete solace to herselfe alone;
Sometimes she song, as lowd as larke in ayre,
Sometimes she laught, that nigh her breth was gone,
Yet was there not with her else any one,
That might to her move cause of meriment:
Matter of merth enough, though there were none,
She could devise, and thousand waies invent,
To feede her foolish humour and vaine jolliment.

IV

Which when far of Cymochles heard and saw,
He lowdly cald to such as were abord,
The little barke unto the shore to draw,
And him to ferry over that deepe ford.
The merry mariner unto his word
Soone hearkned, and her painted bote streightway
Turnd to the shore, where that same warlike lord
She in receiv'd; but Atin by no way
She would admit, albe the knight her much did pray.

V

Eftsoones her shallow ship away did slide,
More swift then swallow sheres the liquid skye,
Withouten oare or pilot it to guide,
Or winged canvas with the wind to fly:
Onely she turnd a pin, and by and by
It cut away upon the yielding wave;
Ne cared she her course for to apply:
For it was taught the way which she would have,
And both from rocks and flats it selfe could wisely save.

VI

And all the way, the wanton damsell found
New merth, her passenger to entertaine:
For she in pleasaunt purpose did abound,
And greatly joyed merry tales to faine,
Of which a store-house did with her remaine:
Yet seemed, nothing well they her became;
For all her wordes she drownd with laughter vaine,
And wanted grace in utt'ring of the same,
That turned all her pleasaunce to a scoffing game.

VII

And other whiles vaine toyes she would devize,
As her fantasticke wit did most delight:
Sometimes her head she fondly would aguize
With gaudy girlonds, or fresh flowrets dight
About her necke, or rings of rushes plight;
Sometimes, to do him laugh, she would assay
To laugh at shaking of the leaves light,
Or to behold the water worke and play
About her little frigot, therein making way.

VIII

Her light behaviour and loose dalliaunce
Gave wondrous great contentment to the knight,
That of his way he had no sovenaunce,
Nor care of vow'd revenge and cruell fight,
But to weake wench did yield his martiall might:
So easie was, to quench his flamed minde
With one sweete drop of sensuall delight;
So easie is, t' appease the stormy winde
Of malice in the calme of pleasaunt womankind.

IX

Diverse discourses in their way they spent,
Mongst which Cymochles of her questioned,
Both what she was, and what that usage Which in her cott
she daily practized.
'Vaine man!' saide she, 'that wouldest be reckoned
A straunger in thy home, and ignoraunt
Of Phaedria (for so my name is red)
Of Phaedria, thine owne fellow servaunt;
For thou to serve Acrasia thy selfe doest vaunt.

X

'In this wide inland sea, that hight by name
The Idle Lake, my wandring ship I row,
That knowes her port, and thether sayles by ayme;
Ne care, ne feare I, how the wind do blow,
Or whether swift I wend, or whether slow:
Both slow and swift a like do serve my tourne:
Ne swelling Neptune, ne lowd thundring Jove
Can chaunge my cheare, or make me ever mourne:
My little boat can safely passe this perilous bourne.'

XI

Whiles thus she talked, and whiles thus she toyd,
They were far past the passage which he spake,
And come unto an island, waste and voyd,
That floted in the midst of that great lake.
There her small gondelay her port did make,
And that gay payre issewing on the shore
Disburdned her. Their way they forward take
Into the land, that lay them faire before,
Whose pleasaunce she him shewd, and plentifull great store.

XII

It was a chosen plott of fertile land,
Emongst wide waves sett, like a litle nest,
As if it had by Natures cunning hand
Bene choycely picked out from all the rest,
And laid forth for ensample of the best:
No dainty flowre or herbe, that growes on grownd,
No arborett with painted blossomes drest,
And smelling sweete, but there it might be fownd
To bud out faire, and her sweete smels throwe al arownd.

XIII

No tree, whose braunches did not bravely spring;
No braunch, whereon a fine bird did not sitt;
No bird, but did her shrill notes sweetely sing;
No song, but did containe a lovely ditt:
Trees, braunches, birds, and songs were framed fitt
For to allure fraile mind to carelesse ease.
Carelesse the man soone woxe, and his weake witt
Was overcome of thing that did him please;
So pleased, did his wrathfull purpose faire appease.

XIV

Thus when shee had his eyes and sences fed
With false delights, and fild with pleasures vayn,
Into a shady dale she soft him led,
And laid him downe upon a grassy playn;
And her sweete selfe without dread or disdayn
She sett beside, laying his head disarmd
In her loose lap, it softly to sustayn,
Where soone he slumbred, fearing not be harmd,
The whiles with a love lay she thus him sweetly charmd:

XV

'Behold, O man, that toilesome paines doest take,
The flowrs, the fields, and all that pleasaunt growes,
How they them selves doe thine ensample make,
Whiles nothing envious Nature them forth throwes
Out of her fruitfull lap; how no man knowes,
They spring, they bud, they blossome fresh and faire,
And decke the world with their rich pompous showes;
Yet no man for them taketh paines or care,
Yet no man to them can his carefull paines compare.

XVI

'The lilly, lady of the flowring field,
The flowre deluce, her lovely paramoure,
Bid thee to them thy fruitlesse labors yield,
And soone leave off this toylsome weary stoure:
Loe, loe, how brave she decks her bounteous boure,
With silkin curtens and gold coverletts,
Therein to shrowd her sumptuous belamoure!
Yet nether spinnes nor cards, ne cares nor fretts,
But to her mother Nature all her care she letts.

XVII

'Why then doest thou, O man, that of them all
Art lord, and eke of Nature soveraine,
Wilfully make thy selfe a wretched thrall,
And waste thy joyous howres in needelesse paine,
Seeking for daunger and adventures vaine?
What bootes it al to have, and nothing use?
Who shall him rew, that swimming in the maine
Will die for thrist, and water doth refuse?
Refuse such fruitlesse toile, and present pleasures chuse.'

XVIII

By this she had him lulled fast a sleepe,
That of no worldly thing he care did take;
Then she with liquors strong his eies did steepe,
That nothing should him hastily awake:
So she him lefte, and did her selfe betake
Unto her boat again, with which she clefte
The slouthfull wave of that great griesy lake;
Soone shee that island far behind her lefte,
And now is come to that same place, where first she wefte.

XIX

By this time was the worthy Guyon brought
Unto the other side of that wide strond,
Where she was rowing, and for passage sought:
Him needed not long call; shee soone to hond
Her ferry brought, where him she byding fond
With his sad guide: him selfe she tooke a boord,
But the blacke palmer suffred still to stond,
Ne would for price or prayers once affoord,
To ferry that old man over the perlous foord.

XX

Guyon was loath to leave his guide behind,
Yet, being entred, might not backe retyre;
For the flitt barke, obaying to her mind,
Forth launched quickly, as she did desire,
Ne gave him leave to bid that aged sire
Adieu, but nimbly ran her wonted course
Through the dull billowes thicke as troubled mire,
Whom nether wind out of their seat could forse,
Nor timely tides did drive out of their sluggish sourse.

XXI

And by the way, as was her wonted guize,
Her mery fitt shee freshly gan to reare,
And did of joy and jollity devize,
Her selfe to cherish, and her guest to cheare.
The knight was courteous, and did not forbeare
Her honest merth and pleasaunce to partake;
But when he saw her toy, and gibe, and geare,
And passe the bonds of modest merimake,
Her dalliaunce he despisd, and follies did forsake.

XXII

Yet she still followed her former style,
And said, and did, all that mote him delight,
Till they arrived in that pleasaunt ile,
Where sleeping late she lefte her other knight.
But whenas Guyon of that land had sight,
He wist him selfe amisse, and angry said:
'Ah! dame, perdy ye have not doen me right,
Thus to mislead mee, whiles I you obaid:
Me litle needed from my right way to have straid.'

XXIII

'Faire sir,' quoth she, 'be not displeasd at all:
Who fares on sea may not commaund his way,
Ne wind and weather at his pleasure call:
The sea is wide, and easy for to stray;
The wind unstable, and doth never stay.
But here a while ye may in safety rest,
Till season serve new passage to assay:
Better safe port, then be in seas distrest.'
Therewith she laught, and did her earnest end in jest.

XXIV

But he, halfe discontent, mote nathelesse
Himselfe appease, and issewd forth on shore:
The joyes whereof, and happy fruitfulnesse,
Such as he saw, she gan him lay before,
And all, though pleasaunt, yet she made much more:
The fields did laugh, the flowres did freshly spring,
The trees did bud, and early blossomes bore,
And all the quire of birds did sweetly sing,
And told that gardins pleasures in their caroling.

XXV

And she, more sweete then any bird on bough,
Would oftentimes emongst them beare a part,
And strive to passe (as she could well enough)
Their native musicke by her skilful art:
So did she all, that might his constant hart
Withdraw from thought of warlike enterprize,
And drowne in dissolute delights apart,
Where noise of armes, or vew of martiall guize,
Might not revive desire of knightly exercize.

XXVI

But he was wise, and wary of her will,
And ever held his hand upon his hart:
Yet would not seeme so rude, and thewed ill,
As to despise so curteous seeming part,
That gentle lady did to him impart:
But fairly tempring fond desire subdewd,
And ever her desired to depart.
She list not heare, but her disports poursewd,
And ever bad him stay, till time the tide renewd.

XXVII

And now by this, Cymochles howre was spent,
That he awoke out of his ydle dreme,
And shaking off his drowsy dreriment,
Gan him avize, howe ill did him beseme,
In slouthfull sleepe his molten hart to steme,
And quench the brond of his conceived yre.
Tho up he started, stird with shame extreme,
Ne staied for his damsell to inquire,
But marched to the strond, there passage to require.

XXVIII

And in the way he with Sir Guyon mett,
Accompanyde with Phaedria the faire:
Eftsoones he gan to rage, and inly frett,
Crying: 'Let be that lady debonaire,
Thou recreaunt knight, and soone thy selfe prepaire
To batteile, if thou meane her love to gayn:
Loe! loe already, how the fowles in aire
Doe flocke, awaiting shortly to obtayn
Thy carcas for their pray, the guerdon of thy payn.'

XXIX

And therewithall he fiersly at him flew,
And with importune outrage him assayld;
Who, soone prepard to field, his sword forth drew,
And him with equall valew countervayld:
Their mightie strokes their haberjeons dismayld,
And naked made each others manly spalles;
The mortall steele despiteously entayld
Deepe in their flesh, quite through the yron walles,
That a large purple stream adown their giambeux falles.

XXX

Cymocles, that had never mett before
So puissant foe, with envious despight
His prowd presumed force increased more,
Disdeigning to bee held so long in fight:
Sir Guyon, grudging not so much his might,
As those unknightly raylinges which he spoke,
With wrathfull fire his corage kindled bright,
Thereof devising shortly to be wroke,
And, doubling all his powres, redoubled every stroke.

XXXI

Both of them high attonce their hands enhaunst,
And both attonce their huge blowes down did sway:
Cymochles sword on Guyons shield yglaunst,
And thereof nigh one quarter sheard away;
But Guyons angry blade so fiers did play
On th' others helmett, which as Titan shone,
That quite it clove his plumed crest in tway,
And bared all his head unto the bone;
Wherewith astonisht, still he stood, as sencelesse stone.

XXXII

Still as he stood, fayre Phaedria, that beheld
That deadly daunger, soone atweene them ran;
And at their feet her selfe most humbly feld,
Crying with pitteous voyce, and count'nance wan,
'Ah, well away! most noble lords, how can
Your cruell eyes endure so pitteous sight,
To shed your lives on ground? Wo worth the man,
That first did teach the cursed steele to bight
In his owne flesh, and make way to the living spright!

XXXIII

'If ever love of lady did empierce
Your yron brestes, or pittie could find place,
Withhold your bloody handes from battaill fierce,
And sith for me ye fight, to me this grace
Both yield, to stay your deadly stryfe a space.'
They stayd a while; and forth she gan proceed:
'Most wretched woman, and of wicked race,
That am the authour of this hainous deed,
And cause of death betweene two doughtie knights do breed!

XXXIV

'But if for me ye fight, or me will serve,
Not this rude kynd of battaill, nor these armes
Are meet, the which doe men in bale to sterve,
And doolefull sorrow heape with deadly harmes:
Such cruell game my scarmoges disarmes:
Another warre, and other weapons, I
Doe love, where Love does give his sweet alarmes,
Without bloodshed, and where the enimy
Does yield unto his foe a pleasaunt victory.

XXXV

'Debatefull strife, and cruell enmity,
The famous name of knighthood fowly shend;
But lively peace, and gentle amity,
And in amours the passing howres to spend,
The mightie martiall handes doe most commend;
Of love they ever greater glory bore,
Then of their armes: Mars is Cupidoes frend,
And is for Venus loves renowmed more,
Then all his wars and spoiles, the which he did of yore.'

XXXVI

Therewith she sweetly smyld. They, though full bent
To prove extremities of bloody fight,
Yet at her speach their rages gan relent,
And calme the sea of their tempestuous spight:
Such powre have pleasing wordes; such is the might
Of courteous clemency in gentle hart.
Now after all was ceast, the Faery knight
Besought that damzell suffer him depart,
And yield him ready passage to that other part.

XXXVII

She no lesse glad, then he desirous, was
Of his departure thence; for of her joy
And vaine delight she saw he light did pas,
A foe of folly and immodest toy,
Still solemne sad, or still disdainfull coy,
Delighting all in armes and cruell warre,
That her sweet peace and pleasures did annoy,
Troubled with terrour and unquiet jarre,
That she well pleased was thence to amove him farre.

XXXVIII

Tho him she brought abord, and her swift bote
Forthwith directed to that further strand;
The which on the dull waves did lightly flote,
And soone arrived on the shallow sand,
Where gladsome Guyon salied forth to land,
And to that damsell thankes gave for reward.
Upon that shore he spyed Atin stand,
There by his maister left when late he far'd
In Phaedrias flitt barck over that perlous shard.

XXXIX

Well could he him remember, sith of late
He with Pyrochles sharp debatement made:
Streight gan he him revyle, and bitter rate,
As shepheardes curre, that in darke eveninges shade
Hath tracted forth some salvage beastes trade:
'Vile miscreaunt!' said he, 'whether dost thou flye
The shame and death, which will thee soone invade?
What coward hand shall doe thee next to dye,
That art thus fowly fledd from famous enimy?'

XL

With that he stifly shooke his steelhead dart:
But sober Guyon hearing him so rayle,
Though somewhat moved in his mightie hart,
Yet with strong reason maistred passion fraile,
And passed fayrely forth. He, turning taile,
Backe to the strond retyrd, and there still stayd,
Awaiting passage, which him late did faile;
The whiles Cymochles with that wanton mayd
The hasty heat of his avowd revenge delayd.

XLI

Whylest there the varlet stood, he saw from farre
An armed knight, that towardes him fast ran;
He ran on foot, as if in lucklesse warre
His forlorne steed from him the victour wan;
He seemed breathlesse, hartlesse, faint, and wan,
And all his armour sprinckled was with blood,
And soyld with durtie gore, that no man can
Discerne the hew thereof. He never stood,
But bent his hastie course towardes the ydle flood.

XLII

The varlett saw, when to the flood he came,
How without stop or stay he fiersly lept,
And deepe him selfe beducked in the same,
That in the lake his loftie crest was stept,
Ne of his safetie seemed care he kept,
But with his raging armes he rudely flasht
The waves about, and all his armour swept,
That all the blood and filth away was washt,
Yet still he bet the water, and the billowes dasht.

XLIII

Atin drew nigh, to weet what it mote bee;
For much he wondred at that uncouth sight:
Whom should he, but his own deare lord, there see,
His owne deare lord Pyrochles in sad plight,
Ready to drowne him selfe for fell despight.
'Harrow now out, and well away!' he cryde,
'What dismall day hath lent this cursed light,
To see my lord so deadly damnifyde?
Pyrochles, O Pyrochles, what is thee betyde?'

XLIV

'I burne, I burne, I burne!' then lowd he cryde,
'O how I burne with implacable fyre!
Yet nought can quench mine inly flaming syde,
Nor sea of licour cold, nor lake of myre,
Nothing but death can doe me to respyre.'
'Ah! be it,' said he, 'from Pyrochles farre,
After pursewing Death once to requyre,
Or think, that ought those puissant hands may marre:
Death is for wretches borne under unhappy starre.'

XLV

'Perdye, then is it fitt for me,' said he,
'That am, I weene, most wretched man alive,
Burning in flames, yet no flames can I see,
And dying dayly, dayly yet revive.
O Atin, helpe to me last death to give.'
The varlet at his plaint was grieved so sore,
That his deepe wounded hart in two did rive,
And his owne health remembring now no more,
Did follow that ensample which he blam'd afore.

XLVI

Into the lake he lept, his lord to ayd,
(So love the dread of daunger doth despise)
And of him catching hold, him strongly stayd
From drowning. But more happy he then wise,
Of that seas nature did him not avise.
The waves thereof so slow and sluggish were,
Engrost with mud, which did them fowle agrise,
That every weighty thing they did upbeare,
Ne ought mote ever sinck downe to the bottom there.

XLVII

Whiles thus they strugled in that ydle wave,
And strove in vaine, the one him selfe to drowne,
The other both from drowning for to save,
Lo! to that shore one in an auncient gowne,
Whose hoary locks great gravitie did crowne,
Holding in hand a goodly arming sword,
By fortune came, ledd with the troublous sowne:
Where drenched deepe he fownd in that dull ford
The carefull servaunt, stryving with his raging lord.

XLVIII

Him Atin spying, knew right well of yore,
And lowdly cald: 'Help, helpe! O Archimage,
To save my lord, in wretched plight forlore;
Helpe with thy hand, or with thy counsell sage:
Weake handes, but counsell is most strong in age.'
Him when the old man saw, he woundred sore,
To see Pyrochles there so rudely rage:
Yet sithens helpe, he saw, he needed more
Then pitty, he in hast approched to the shore;

XLIX

And cald, 'Pyrochles! what is this I see?
What hellish fury hath at earst thee hent?
Furious ever I thee knew to bee,
Yet never in this straunge astonishment.'
'These flames, these flames,' he cryde, 'do me torment!'
'What flames,' quoth he, 'when I thee present see
In daunger rather to be drent then brent?
'Harrow! the flames which me consume,' said hee,
'Ne can be quencht, within my secret bowelles bee.

L

'That cursed man, that cruel feend of hell,
Furor, oh! Furor hath me thus bedight:
His deadly woundes within my liver swell,
And his whott fyre burnes in mine entralles bright,
Kindled through his infernall brond of spight,
Sith late with him I batteill vaine would boste;
That now I weene Joves dreaded thunder light
Does scorch not halfe so sore, nor damned ghoste
In flaming Phlegeton does not so felly roste.'

LI

Which when as Archimago heard, his griefe
He knew right well, and him attonce disarmd:
Then searcht his secret woundes, and made a priefe
Of every place, that was with bruzing harmd,
Or with the hidden fire too inly warmd.
Which doen, he balmes and herbes thereto applyde,
And evermore with mightie spels them charmd,
That in short space he has them qualifyde,
And him restor'd to helth, that would have algates dyde.





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