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That each to other made, as oft befell:
For Amoret right fearefull was and faint,
Lest she with blame her honor should attaint,
That everie word did tremble as she spake,
And everie looke was coy and wondrous quaint,'

And everie limbe that touched her2 did quake; Yet could she not but curteous countenance to her


6 For well she wist, as true it was indeed,
That her lives lord and patrone of her health
Right well deserved, as his duefull meed,
Her love, her service, and her utmost wealth:
All is his iustly that all freely dealth.
Nathlesse her honor dearer then her life
She sought to save, as thing reserv'd from stealth ;

Die had she lever 4 with Enchanters knife
Then to be false in love, profest a virgine wife.

7 Thereto feare was mad so much the greater,

Through fine abusion of that Briton mayd;
Who, for to hide her fained sex the better
And maske her wounded mind, both did and sayd
Full many things so doubtfull to be wayd,
That well she wist not what by them to gesse:
For otherwhiles to her she purpos made

i Quaint, nice.

3 1. e. defender of her safety. 2 1. e. Britomart.

4 Lever, rather. 5 Otherwhiles otherwhiles, sometimes - sometimes. 6 Purpos, discourse.

Wounded that is, with love for

VII. 4.- Wounded mind.) Arthegall. H.

Of love, and otherwhiles of lustfulnesse, That much she feard his mind would grow to some


8 His will she feard; for him she surely thought
To be a man, such as indeed he seemed ;
And much the more, by that he lately wrought,
When her from deadly thraldome he redeemed,
For which no service she too much esteemed:
Yet dread of shame and doubt of fowle dishonor
Made her not yeeld so much as due she deemed.

Yet Britomart attended duly on her,
As well became a knight, and did to her all honor.

9 It so befell one evening that they came

Unto a Castell, lodged there to bee,
Where many a knight, and many a lovely dame,
Was then assembled deeds of armes to see:
Amongst all which was none more faire then shee,

of them mov’d to eye her sore. The custome of that place was such, that hee,

Which had no love nor lemman there in store, Should either winne him one, or lye without the


10 Amongst the rest there was a iolly Knight,

Who, being asked for his love, avow'd
That fairest Amoret was his by right,
And offred that to iustifie alowd.
The warlike Virgine, seeing his so prowd
And boastfull chalenge, wexed inlie wroth,
Bat for the present did her anger shrowd;

And sayd, her love to lose she was full loth, But either he should neither of them have, or both.

11 So foorth they went, and both together giusted;

But that same younker soone was overthrowne,
And made repent that he had rashly lusted
For thing unlawfull that was not his owne:
Yet since he seemed valiant, though unknowne,
She, that no lesse was courteous then stout,
Cast how to salve, that both the custome showne ?

Were kept, and yet that Knight not locked out; That seem'd full hard t'accord two things so far in dout.

12 The seneschall was cald to deemes the right

Whom she requir'd, that first fayre Amoret
Might be to her allow'd, as to a knight
That did her win and free from chalenge set:
Which straight to her was yeelded without let :
Then, since that strange Knights love from him was

She claim'd that to herselfe, as ladies det,

He as a knight might ius:ly be admitted ; So none should be out shut, sith all of loves were


13 With that, her glistring helmet she unlaced ;

Which doft, her golden lockes, that were upbound

1 Salve, secure.
2 Showne, published.
8 Deeme, judge.

4 Quitted, taken.
6 Of, with.

The househcld stewar-, or master of

XII. 1. — Seneschall.] the ceremonies. H.

Still in a knot, unto her heeles downe traced,
And like a silken veile in compasse round
About her backe and all her bodie wound:
Like as the shining skie in summers night,
What time the dayes with scorching heat abound,

Is creasted all with lines of firie light,
That it prodigious seemes in common peoples sight.

14. Such when those knights and ladies all about

Beheld her, all were with amazement smit,
And every one gan grow in secret dout
Of this and that, according to each wit :
Some thought that some enchantment faygned it;
Some, that Bellona in that warlike wise
To them appear’d, with shield and armour fit;

Some, that it was a maske of strange disguise :
So diversely each one did sundrie doubts devise.

15 But that young Knight, which through her gentle

deed Was to that goodly fellowship restor’d, Ten thousand thankes did yeeld her for her meed, And, doubly overcommen, her ador'd : So did they all their former strife accord ; And eke fayre Amoret, now freed from feare, More franke affection did to her afford ;

And to her bed, which she was wont forbeare, Now freely drew, and found right safe assurance

theare :

XIII. 6. With lines of firie light.] This is a description of the Aurora Borealis. H.

16 Where all that night they of their loves did treat!

And hard adventures, twixt themselves alone,
That each the other gan with passion great
And griefull” pittie privately bemone.
The morow next, so soone as Titan shone,
They both uprose and to their waies them dighta
Long wandred they, yet never met with none

That to their willes could them direct aright,
Or to them tydings tell that mote their harts delight

17 Lo thus they rode, till at the last they spide

Two armed Knights that toward them did pace,
And ech of them had ryding by his side
A Ladie, seeming in so farre a space;
But ladies none they were, albee in face
And outward shew faire semblance they did beare
For under maske of beautie and good grace

Vile treason and fowle falshood hidden were,
That mote to none but to the warie wise appeare.

18 The one of them the false Duessa hight,

That now had chang’d her former wonted hew;
For she could d'on so manie shapes in sight,
As ever could cameleon colours new;
So could she forge all colours, save the trew :
The other no whit better was then shee,
But that, such as she was, she plaine did shew;

Yet otherwise much worse, if worse might bee,
And dayly more offensive unto each degree.*

1 Treat, discourse.
2 Griefull, grief-full.

8 I. e. prepared for their journey 4 1. e. to persons of all sorts.

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