Incipit liber secundus.
Now herkeneth, every maner man
That Englissh understonde kan, 510
And listeneth of my drem to lere.
For now at erste shul ye here
So sely an avisyon,
That Isaye, ne Scipion,
Ne kyng Nabugodonosor, 515
Pharoo, Turnus, ne Elcanor,
Ne mette such a drem as this!
Now faire blisfull, O Cipris,
So be my favour at this tyme!
And ye, me to endite and ryme 520
Helpeth, that on Parnaso duelle,
Be Elicon, the clere welle.
O Thought, that wrot al that I mette,
And in the tresorye hyt shette
Of my brayn, now shal men se 525
Yf any vertu in the be,
To tellen al my drem aryght.
Now kythe thyn engyn and myght!
This egle, of which I have yow told,
That shon with fethres as of gold, 530
Which that so hye gan to sore,
I gan beholde more and more,
To se the beaute and the wonder;
But never was ther dynt of thonder,
Ne that thyng that men calle fouder, 535
That smot somtyme a tour to powder,
And in his swifte comynge brende,
That so swithe gan descende
As this foul, when hyt beheld
That I a-roume was in the feld; 540
And with hys grymme pawes stronge,
Withyn hys sharpe nayles longe,
Me, fleynge, in a swap he hente,
And with hys sours ayen up wente,
Me caryinge in his clawes starke 545
As lyghtly as I were a larke,
How high, I can not telle yow,
For I cam up, y nyste how.
For so astonyed and asweved
Was every vertu in my heved, 550
What with his sours and with my drede,
That al my felynge gan to dede;
For-whi hit was to gret affray.
Thus I longe in hys clawes lay,
Til at the laste he to me spak 555
In mannes vois, and seyde, "Awak!
And be not agast so, for shame!"
And called me tho by my name,
And, for I shulde the bet abreyde,
Me mette, "Awak," to me he seyde, 560
Ryght in the same vois and stevene
That useth oon I koude nevene;
And with that vois, soth for to seyn,
My mynde cam to me ageyn,
For hyt was goodly seyd to me, 565
So nas hyt never wont to be.
And here-withal I gan to stere,
And he me in his fet to bere,
Til that he felte that I had hete,
And felte eke tho myn herte bete. 570
And thoo gan he me to disporte,
And with wordes to comforte,
And sayde twyes, "Seynte Marye!
Thou art noyous for to carye,
And nothyng nedeth it, pardee! 575
For, also wis God helpe me,
As thou noon harm shalt have of this;
And this caas that betyd the is,
Is for thy lore and for thy prow; --
Let see! darst thou yet loke now? 580
Be ful assured, boldely,
I am thy frend." And therwith I
Gan for to wondren in my mynde.
"O God!" thoughte I, "that madest kynde,
Shal I noon other weyes dye? 585
Wher Joves wol me stellyfye,
Or what thing may this sygnifye?
I neyther am Ennok, ne Elye,
Ne Romulus, ne Ganymede,
That was ybore up, as men rede, 590
To hevene with daun Jupiter,
And mad the goddys botiller."
Loo, this was thoo my fantasye!
But he that bar me gan espye
That I so thoughte, and seyde this: 595
"Thow demest of thyself amys;
For Joves ys not theraboute --
I dar wel putte the out of doute --
To make of the as yet a sterre.
But er I bere the moche ferre, 600
I wol the telle what I am,
And whider thou shalt, and why I cam
To do thys, so that thou take
Good herte, and not for fere quake."
"Gladly," quod I. "Now wel," quod he, 605
"First, I, that in my fet have the,
Of which thou hast a fere and wonder,
Am dwellynge with the god of thonder,
Which that men callen Jupiter,
That dooth me flee ful ofte fer 610
To do al hys comaundement.
And for this cause he hath me sent
To the; now herke, be thy trouthe!
Certeyn, he hath of the routhe,
That thou so longe trewely 615
Hast served so ententyfly
Hys blynde nevew Cupido,
And faire Venus also,
Withoute guerdon ever yit,
And never-the-lesse hast set thy wit -- 620
Although that in thy hed ful lyte is --
To make bookys, songes, dytees,
In ryme, or elles in cadence,
As thou best canst, in reverence
Of Love, and of hys servantes eke, 625
That have hys servyse soght, and seke;
And peynest the to preyse hys art,
Although thou haddest never part;
Wherfore, also God me blesse,
Joves halt hyt gret humblesse, 630
And vertu eke, that thou wolt make
A-nyght ful ofte thyn hed to ake
In thy studye, so thou writest,
And ever mo of love enditest,
In honour of hym and in preysynges, 635
And in his folkes furtherynges,
And in hir matere al devisest,
And noght hym nor his folk dispisest,
Although thou maist goo in the daunce
Of hem that hym lyst not avaunce. 640
"Wherfore, as I seyde, ywys,
Jupiter considereth this,
And also, beau sir, other thynges;
That is, that thou hast no tydynges
Of Loves folk yf they be glade, 645
Ne of noght elles that God made;
And noght oonly fro fer contree
That ther no tydynge cometh to thee,
But of thy verray neyghebores,
That duellen almost at thy dores, 650
Thou herist neyther that ne this;
For when thy labour doon al ys,
And hast mad alle thy rekenynges,
In stede of reste and newe thynges,
Thou goost hom to thy hous anoon; 655
And, also domb as any stoon,
Thou sittest at another book
Tyl fully daswed ys thy look,
And lyvest thus as an heremyte,
Although thyn abstynence ys lyte. 660
"And therfore Joves, thorgh hys grace,
Wol that I bere the to a place
Which that hight the Hous of Fame,
To do the som disport and game,
In som recompensacion 665
Of labour and devocion,
That thou hast had, loo causeles,
To Cupido, the rechcheles!
And thus this god, thorgh his merite,
Wol with som maner thing the quyte, 670
So that thou wolt be of good chere.
For truste wel that thou shalt here,
When we be come there I seye,
Mo wonder thynges, dar I leye,
And of Loves folk moo tydynges, 675
Both sothe sawes and lesinges;
And moo loves newe begonne,
And longe yserved loves wonne,
And moo loves casuelly
That ben betyd, no man wot why, 680
But as a blynd man stert an hare;
And more jolytee and fare,
While that they fynde love of stel,
As thinketh hem, and over-al wel;
Mo discordes, moo jelousies, 685
Mo murmures, and moo novelries,
And moo dissymulacions,
And feyned reparacions;
And moo berdys in two houres
Withoute rasour or sisoures 690
Ymad, then greynes be of sondes;
And eke moo holdynge in hondes,
And also moo renovelaunces
Of olde forleten aqueyntaunces;
Mo love-dayes and acordes 695
Then on instrumentes be cordes;
And eke of loves moo eschaunges
Then ever cornes were in graunges, --
Unnethe maistow trowen this?"
Quod he. "Noo, helpe me God so wys!" 700
Quod I. "Noo? why?" quod he. "For hyt
Were impossible, to my wit,
Though that Fame had alle the pies
In al a realme, and alle the spies,
How that yet she shulde here al this, 705
Or they espie hyt." "O yis, yis!"
Quod he to me, "that kan I preve
Be reson worthy for to leve,
So that thou yeve thyn advertence
To understonde my sentence. 710
"First shalt thou here where she duelleth,
And so thyn oune bok hyt tellith;
Hir paleys stant, as I shal seye,
Ryght even in myddes of the weye
Betwixen hevene, erthe, and see; 715
That what so ever in al these three
Is spoken, either privy or apert,
The way therto ys so overt,
And stant eke in so juste a place
That every soun mot to hyt pace, 720
Or what so cometh from any tonge,
Be hyt rouned, red, or songe,
Or spoke in suerte or in drede,
Certeyn, hyt moste thider nede.
"Now herkene wel, for-why I wille 725
Tellen the a propre skille
And a worthy demonstracion
In myn ymagynacion.
"Geffrey, thou wost ryght wel this,
That every kyndely thyng that is 730
Hath a kyndely stede ther he
May best in hyt conserved be;
Unto which place every thyng,
Thorgh his kyndely enclynyng,
Moveth for to come to, 735
Whan that hyt is awey therfro;
As thus: loo, thou maist alday se
That any thing that hevy be,
As stoon, or led, or thyng of wighte,
And bere hyt never so hye on highte, 740
Lat goo thyn hand, hit falleth doun.
Ryght so seye I be fyr or soun,
Or smoke, or other thynges lyghte;
Alwey they seke upward on highte.
While ech of hem is at his large, 745
Lyght thing upward, and dounward charge.
And for this cause mayst thou see
That every ryver to the see
Enclyned ys to goo by kynde,
And by these skilles, as I fynde, 750
Hath fyssh duellynge in flood and see,
And treës eke in erthe bee.
Thus every thing, by thys reson,
Hath his propre mansyon,
To which hit seketh to repaire, 755
Ther-as hit shulde not apaire.
Loo, this sentence ys knowen kouth
Of every philosophres mouth,
As Aristotle and daun Platon,
And other clerkys many oon; 760
And to confirme my resoun,
Thou wost wel this, that spech is soun,
Or elles no man myghte hyt here;
Now herke what y wol the lere.
"Soun ys noght but eyr ybroken, 765
And every speche that ys spoken,
Lowd or pryvee, foul or fair,
In his substaunce ys but air;
For as flaumbe ys but lyghted smoke,
Ryght soo soun ys air ybroke. 770
But this may be in many wyse,
Of which I wil the twoo devyse,
As soun that cometh of pipe or harpe.
For whan a pipe is blowen sharpe,
The air ys twyst with violence 775
And rent; loo, thys ys my sentence;
Eke, whan men harpe-strynges smyte,
Whether hyt be moche or lyte,
Loo, with the strok the ayr tobreketh;
And ryght so breketh it when men speketh. 780
Thus wost thou wel what thing is speche.
"Now hennesforth y wol the teche
How every speche, or noyse, or soun,
Thurgh hys multiplicacioun,
Thogh hyt were piped of a mous, 785
Mot nede come to Fames Hous.
I preve hyt thus -- take hede now --
Be experience; for yf that thow
Throwe on water now a stoon,
Wel wost thou, hyt wol make anoon 790
A litel roundell as a sercle,
Paraunter brod as a covercle;
And ryght anoon thow shalt see wel,
That whel wol cause another whel,
And that the thridde, and so forth, brother, 795
Every sercle causynge other
Wydder than hymselve was;
And thus fro roundel to compas,
Ech aboute other goynge
Causeth of othres sterynge 800
And multiplyinge ever moo,
Til that hyt be so fer ygoo,
That hyt at bothe brynkes bee.
Although thou mowe hyt not ysee
Above, hyt gooth yet alway under, 805
Although thou thenke hyt a gret wonder.
And whoso seyth of trouthe I varye,
Bid hym proven the contrarye.
And ryght thus every word, ywys,
That lowd or pryvee spoken ys, 810
Moveth first an ayr aboute,
And of thys movynge, out of doute,
Another ayr anoon ys meved,
As I have of the watir preved,
That every cercle causeth other. 815
Ryght so of ayr, my leve brother;
Everych ayr another stereth
More and more, and speche up bereth,
Or voys, or noyse, or word, or soun,
Ay through multiplicacioun, 820
Til hyt be atte Hous of Fame, --
Take yt in ernest or in game.
"Now have I told, yf thou have mynde,
How speche or soun, of pure kynde,
Enclyned ys upward to meve; 825
This, mayst thou fele, wel I preve.
And that same place, ywys,
That every thyng enclyned to ys,
Hath his kyndelyche stede:
That sheweth hyt, withouten drede, 830
That kyndely the mansioun
Of every speche, of every soun,
Be hyt eyther foul or fair,
Hath hys kynde place in ayr.
And syn that every thyng that is 835
Out of hys kynde place, ywys,
Moveth thidder for to goo,
Yif hyt aweye be therfroo,
As I have before preved the,
Hyt seweth, every soun, parde, 840
Moveth kyndely to pace
Al up into his kyndely place.
And this place of which I telle,
Ther as Fame lyst to duelle,
Ys set amyddys of these three, 845
Heven, erthe, and eke the see,
As most conservatyf the soun.
Than ys this the conclusyoun,
That every speche of every man,
As y the telle first began, 850
Moveth up on high to pace
Kyndely to Fames place.
"Telle me this now feythfully,
Have y not preved thus symply,
Withoute any subtilite 855
Of speche, or gret prolixite
Of termes of philosophie,
Of figures of poetrie,
Or colours of rethorike?
Pardee, hit oughte the to lyke! 860
For hard langage and hard matere
Ys encombrous for to here
Attones; wost thou not wel this?"
And y answered and seyde, "Yis."
"A ha!" quod he, "lo, so I can 865
Lewedly to a lewed man
Speke, and shewe hym swyche skiles
That he may shake hem be the biles,
So palpable they shulden be.
But telle me this, now praye y the, 870
How thinketh the my conclusyon?"
[Quod he]. "A good persuasion,"
Quod I, "hyt is; and lyk to be
Ryght so as thou hast preved me."
"Be God," quod he, "and as I leve, 875
Thou shalt have yet, or hit be eve,
Of every word of thys sentence
A preve by experience,
And with thyne eres heren wel
Top and tayl, and everydel, 880
That every word that spoken ys
Cometh into Fames Hous, ywys,
As I have seyd; what wilt thou more?"
And with this word upper to sore
He gan, and seyde, "Be seynt Jame, 885
Now wil we speken al of game!"
"How farest thou?" quod he to me.
"Wel," quod I. "Now see," quod he,
"By thy trouthe, yond adoun,
Wher that thou knowest any toun, 890
Or hous, or any other thing.
And whan thou hast of ought knowyng,
Looke that thou warne me,
And y anoon shal telle the
How fer that thou art now therfro." 895
And y adoun gan loken thoo,
And beheld feldes and playnes,
And now hilles, and now mountaynes,
Now valeyes, now forestes,
And now unnethes grete bestes; 900
Now ryveres, now citees,
Now tounes, and now grete trees,
Now shippes seyllynge in the see.
But thus sone in a while he
Was flowen fro the ground so hye 905
That al the world, as to myn yë,
No more semed than a prikke;
Or elles was the air so thikke
That y ne myghte not discerne.
With that he spak to me as yerne, 910
And seyde, "Seest thou any toun
Or ought thou knowest yonder doun?"
I sayde, "Nay." "No wonder nys,"
Quod he, "for half so high as this
Nas Alixandre Macedo; 915
Ne the kyng, Daun Scipio,
That saw in drem, at poynt devys,
Helle and erthe and paradys;
Ne eke the wrechche Dedalus,
Ne his child, nyce Ykarus, 920
That fleigh so highe that the hete
Hys wynges malt, and he fel wete
In myd the see, and ther he dreynte,
For whom was maked moch compleynte.
"Now turn upward," quod he, "thy face, 925
And behold this large space,
This eyr; but loke thou ne be
Adrad of hem that thou shalt se;
For in this region, certeyn,
Duelleth many a citezeyn, 930
Of which that speketh Daun Plato.
These ben the eyryssh bestes, lo!"
And so saw y all that meynee
Boothe goon and also flee.
"Now," quod he thoo, "cast up thyn yë. 935
Se yonder, loo, the Galaxie,
Which men clepeth the Milky Wey,
For hit ys whit (and somme, parfey,
Kallen hyt Watlynge Strete)
That ones was ybrent with hete, 940
Whan the sonnes sone, the rede,
That highte Pheton, wolde lede
Algate hys fader carte, and gye.
The carte-hors gonne wel espye
That he koude no governaunce, 945
And gonne for to lepe and launce,
And beren hym now up, now doun,
Til that he sey the Scorpioun,
Which that in heven a sygne is yit.
And he, for ferde, loste hys wyt 950
Of that, and let the reynes gon
Of his hors; and they anoon
Gonne up to mounte and doun descende,
Til bothe the eyr and erthe brende;
Til Jupiter, loo, atte laste, 955
Hym slow, and fro the carte caste.
Loo, ys it not a gret myschaunce
To lete a fool han governaunce
Of thing that he can not demeyne?"
And with this word, soth for to seyne, 960
He gan alway upper to sore,
And gladded me ay more and more,
So feythfully to me spak he.
Tho gan y loken under me
And beheld the ayerissh bestes, 965
Cloudes, mystes, and tempestes,
Snowes, hayles, reynes, wyndes,
And th'engendrynge in hir kyndes,
All the wey thrugh which I cam.
"O God!" quod y, "that made Adam, 970
Moche ys thy myght and thy noblesse!"
And thoo thoughte y upon Boece,
That writ, "A thought may flee so hye,
Wyth fetheres of Philosophye,
To passen everych element; 975
And whan he hath so fer ywent,
Than may be seen, behynde hys bak,
Cloude," -- and al that y of spak.
Thoo gan y wexen in a were,
And seyde, "Y wot wel y am here; 980
But wher in body or in gost
I not, ywys; but God, thou wost!"
For more clere entendement
Nas me never yit ysent.
And than thoughte y on Marcian, 985
And eke on Anteclaudian,
That sooth was her descripsion
Of alle the hevenes region,
As fer as that y sey the preve;
Therfore y kan hem now beleve. 990
With that this egle gan to crye,
"Lat be," quod he, "thy fantasye!
Wilt thou lere of sterres aught?"
"Nay, certeynly," quod y, "ryght naught."
"And why?" "For y am now to old." 995
"Elles I wolde the have told,"
Quod he, "the sterres names, lo,
And al the hevenes sygnes therto,
And which they ben." "No fors," quod y.
"Yis, pardee!" quod he; "wostow why? 1000
For when thou redest poetrie,
How goddes gonne stellifye
Bridd, fissh, best, or him or here,
As the Raven, or eyther Bere,
Or Arionis harpe fyn, 1005
Castor, Pollux, or Delphyn,
Or Athalantes doughtres sevene,
How alle these arn set in hevene;
For though thou have hem ofte on honde,
Yet nostow not wher that they stonde." 1010
"No fors," quod y, "hyt is no nede.
I leve as wel, so God me spede,
Hem that write of this matere,
As though I knew her places here;
And eke they shynen here so bryghte, 1015
Hyt shulde shenden al my syghte,
To loke on hem." "That may wel be,"
Quod he. And so forth bar he me
A while, and than he gan to crye,
That never herde I thing so hye, 1020
"Now up the hed, for al ys wel;
Seynt Julyan, loo, bon hostel!
Se here the Hous of Fame, lo!
Maistow not heren that I do?"
"What?" quod I. "The grete soun," 1025
Quod he, "that rumbleth up and doun
In Fames Hous, full of tydynges,
Bothe of feir speche and chidynges,
And of fals and soth compouned.
Herke wel; hyt is not rouned. 1030
Herestow not the grete swogh?"
"Yis, parde!" quod y, "wel ynogh."
"And what soun is it lyk?" quod hee.
"Peter! lyk betynge of the see,"
Quod y, "ayen the roches holowe, 1035
Whan tempest doth the shippes swalowe;
And lat a man stonde, out of doute,
A myle thens, and here hyt route;
Or elles lyk the last humblynge
After the clappe of a thundringe, 1040
Whan Joves hath the air ybete.
But yt doth me for fere swete!"
"Nay, dred the not therof," quod he;
"Hyt is nothing will byten the;
Thou shalt non harm have trewely." 1045
And with this word both he and y
As nygh the place arryved were
As men may casten with a spere.
Y nyste how, but in a strete
He sette me fair on my fete, 1050
And seyde, "Walke forth a pas,
And tak thyn aventure or cas,
That thou shalt fynde in Fames place."
"Now," quod I, "while we han space
To speke, or that I goo fro the, 1055
For the love of God, telle me --
In sooth, that wil I of the lere --
Yf thys noyse that I here
Be, as I have herd the tellen,
Of folk that doun in erthe duellen, 1060
And cometh here in the same wyse
As I the herde or this devyse;
And that there lives body nys
In al that hous that yonder ys,
That maketh al this loude fare." 1065
"Noo," quod he, "by Seynte Clare,
And also wis God rede me!
But o thing y will warne the
Of the whiche thou wolt have wonder.
Loo, to the Hous of Fame yonder, 1070
Thou wost now how, cometh every speche;
Hyt nedeth noght eft the to teche.
But understond now ryght wel this,
Whan any speche ycomen ys
Up to the paleys, anon-ryght 1075
Hyt wexeth lyk the same wight
Which that the word in erthe spak,
Be hyt clothed red or blak;
And hath so verray hys lyknesse
That spak the word, that thou wilt gesse 1080
That it the same body be,
Man or woman, he or she.
And ys not this a wonder thyng?"
"Yis," quod I tho, "by heven kyng!"
And with this word, "Farewel," quod he, 1085
"And here I wol abyden the;
And God of heven sende the grace
Some good to lernen in this place."
And I of him tok leve anon,
And gan forth to the paleys gon. 1090
Explicit liber secundus.