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There never light of cheerful day
Dispers’d the hideous gloom;
Around the wretched room :
And adders, snakes, and toads therein,
As afterwards was known,
And were to monsters grown.
Into this foul and fearful place,
The fair one innocent
Her malice to content.
This maid no sooner enter'd is,
But straight, alas! she hears
Then grievously she fears.
Soon from their holes the vipers creep,
And fiercely her assail :
And her sad fate bewail.
With her fair hands she strives in vain
Her body to defend : With shrieks and cries she doth complain,
But all is to po end.
A servant, list’ning near the door,
Struck with her doleful noise, Straight ran his lady to implore;
But she'll not hear his voice.
With bleeding heart he goes again
To mark the maiden's groans; And plainly bears, within the den,
How she herself bemoans.
Again he to his lady bies.
With all the haste he may : She into furious passion flies,
And orders him away.
Still back again does he return
To hear her tender cries;
Which fill'd him with surprise.
In grief, and horrour, and affright,
He listens at the walls;
He to his lady calls.
"Too sure, O lady, now,' quoth he,
• Your cruelty hath sped; Make haste, for shame, and come and see ;
I fear the virgin's dead.'
She starts to hear her sudden fate,
And does with torches run:
For death his worst had done.
The door being open'd, straight they found
The virgin stretch'd along: Two dreadful snakes had wrapp'd her rounds
Which her to death bad stung.
One round her legs, her thighs, her waist,
Had twin'd his fatal wreath :
And stopp'd her gentle breath.
Their bellies were so fillid,
Thus with their prey were killd.
With horrour straight ran mad; So raving died, as was most right,
'Cause she no pity had.
Of jealousy beware:
And is the Devil's snare. Anonymous.
THE SPANISH LADY'S LOVE. WILL you hear a Spanish lady,
How she woo'd an Englishman? Garments gay, as rich as may be,
Deck'd with jewels had she on: Of a comely countenance and grace was she, Both by birth and parentage of high degree. As his prisoner there he kept her,
In his hands her life did lie; Cupid's bands did tie them faster,
By the liking of an eye. In his courteous company was all her joy, To favour him in any thing she was not coy.
But at last there came commandment
For to set all ladies free,
None to do them injury.
To a lady in distress ;
For to die in heaviness : Thou hast set, this present day, my body free, But my heart in prison still remains with thee.' • How shouldst thou, fair lady, love me,
Whom thou know'st thy country's foe? Thy fair words make me suspect thee;
Serpents lie where flowers grow.' "All the harm I wish on thee, most courteous knight, God grant upon my head the same may fully light! • Blessed be the time and season
That thou cam'st on Spanish ground! If you may our foes be termed,
Gentle foes we have you found : With our city, you have won our hearts each one, Then to your country bear away that is your own.'
Rest you still, most gallant lady:
Rest you still, and weep no more; Of fair flowers you have plenty,
Spain doth yield you wondrous store.' Spaniards fraught with jealousy we oft do find, But Englishmen throughout the world are counted
Leave me not unto a Spaniard,
Thou alone enjoy'st my heart; I am lovely, young, and tender,
Love is likewise my desert: Still to serve thee day and night my mind is press'd; The wife of ev'ry Englishman is counted bless'd.' "It would be a shame, fair lady,
For to bear a woman hence; English soldiers never carry
Any such without offence," 'I will quickly change myself, if it be so, And, like a page,will follow thee where'er thou go." I have neither gold nor silver,
To maintain thee in this case : And to travel is great charges,
As you know, in ev'ry place.' "My chains and jewels ev'ry one shall be thy own, And eke ten thousand pounds in gold that lies up
On the seas are many dangers,
Many storms do there arise,
And force tears from watry eyes.'
Courteous lady, leave this folly,
Here comes all that breeds the strife;
A sweet woman to my wife;