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Whereof when newes was to that tyrant brought, Downe streight to ground fell his astonisht steed, How that the lady Belgè now had found
And eke to th' earth his burden with him bare; A champion, that had with his champion fought, But he himselfe full lightly from him freed, And laid his seneschall low on the ground,
And gan himselfe to fight on foote prepare:
And laught so loud, that all his teeth wide bare
Eftsoones againe his axe he raught on hie, And forth he fard with all his many bad,
Ere he were throughly buckled to his geare, Ne stayed step, till that he came at last
And can let drive at him so dreadfullie, Unto the castle which they conquerd had:
That had he chaunced not his shield to reare, There with huge terrour, to be more ydrad, Ere that huge stroke arrived on him neare, He sternely marcht before the castle gate, He had him surely cloven quite in twaine : And, with bold vaunts and ydle threatning, bad But th' adamantine shield which he did beare Deliver him his owne, ere yet too late,
So well was tempred, that for all his maine To which they had no right, nor any wrongefullstate. It would no passage yeeld unto his purpose vaine. The prince staid not his aunswere to devize, Yet was the stroke so forcibly applide, But opening streight the sparre forth to him came, That made him stagger with uncertaine sway, Full nobly mounted in right warlike wize;
As if he would have tottered to one side: And asked him, if that he were the same,
Wherewith full wroth he fiercely gan assay Who all that wrong unto that wofull dame That curt'sie with like kindnesse to repay, So long had done, and from her native land And smote at him with so importane might, Exiled her, that all the world spake shame. That two more of his armes did fall away, He boldly aunswerd him, he there did stand Like fruitlesse braunches, which the hatchets slight That would his doings iustifie with his owne hand. Hath pruned from the native tree and cropped quight. With that so furiously at hit he few,
With that all mad and furious he grew, As if he would have over-run liim streight;
Like a fell mastiffe through enraging heat, And with his huge great yron axe gan hew And curst, and band, and blasphemies forth threw So hideously uppon his armour bright,
Against his gods, and fire to them did threat, As he to peeces would have chopt it quight; And Hell unto himselfe with horrour great : That the bold prince was forced foote to give Thenceforth he car'd no more which way he strooke, To his first rage, and yeeld to his despight; Nor where it light; but gan to chaufe and sweat, The whilest at him so dreadfully he drive, And gnasht his teeth, and his head at him shooke, That seem'd a marble rocke asunder could have And sternely him beheld with grim and ghastly looke. rive.
Nought fear'd the childe his lookes, ne yet his threats; Thereto a great advauntage eke he has
But onely wexed now the more aware Through his three double hands thrise multiplyde, To save himselfe from those his furious heats, Besides the double strength which in them was : And watch advauntage how to worke his care, For stil, when fit occasion did betyde,
The which good fortune to him offred faire :
His side all bare and naked overtooke, (strooke. The wicked stroke did wound his enemy
And with his mortal steel quite through the body Behinde, beside, before, as he it list apply.
Through all three bodies he him strooke attonce, Which uncouth use whenas the prince perceived, That all the three attonce fell on the plaine, He gan to watch the wielding of his hand,
Else should he thrise have needed for the nonce Least by such slight he were unwares deceived; Them to have stricken, and thrise to have slaine. And ever, ere be saw the stroke to land,
So now all three one sencelesse lumpe remaine, He would it meete and warily withstand.
Enwallow'd in his owne blacke bloudy gore, One time when he his weapon faynd to shift, And byting th' earth for very Deaths disdaine ; As he was wont, and chang'd from hand to hand, Who, with a cloud of night him covering, bore He met him with a counter-stroke so swift,
Downe to the House of Dole, his daies there to de That quite smit off his arme as he it up did lift.
plore. Therewith all fraught with fury and disdaine Which when the lady from the castle saw, He brayd aloud for very fell despight;
Where she with her two sonnes did looking stand, And sodainely, t'avenge himselfe againe
She towards him in hast herselfe did draw Gan into one assemble all the might
To greet him the good fortune of his hand : Of all his hands, and heaved them on hight, And all the people both of towne and land, Thinking to pay him with that one for all : Which there stood gazing from the citties wall But the sad steele seizd not, where it was hight, Uppon these warriours, greedy t’ understand Uppon the childe, but somewhat short did fall, To whether should the victory befall, And lighting on his horses head him quite did mall. Now when they saw it falne, they eke him greeted all.
But Belgè with her sonnes prostráted low An huge great beast it was, when it in length
Thereto the body of a dog she had,
Full of fell ravin and fierce greedinesse; And her recomforted the best he might,
A lions clawes, with powre and rigour clad, Saying; “ Deare lady, deedes ought not be scand To rend and teare whatso she can oppresse ; By th' authors manhood, nor the doers might, A dragons taile, whose sting without redresse But by their trueth and by the causes right : Full deadly wounds whereso it is empight ; That same is it wbich fought for you this day. And eagles wings, for scope and speedinesse, What other meed then need me to requight, Toat nothing may escape her reaching might, But that which yeeldeth vertues meed alway? Whereto she ever list to make her hardy flight. That is, the vertye selfe, which her reward doth pay.”
Much like in foulnesse and deformity She humbly thankt him for that wondrous grace, Unto that monster, whom the Theban knight, And further sayd; “ Ah ! sir, but mote ye please, The father of that fatall progeny, Sith ye thus farre have tendred my poore case, Made kill herselfe for very hearts despight As from my chiefest foe me to release,
That he had red her riddle, which no wighs That your victorious arme will not yet cease, Could ever loose, but suffred deadly doole: Till ye have rooted all the relickes out
So also did this monster use like slight Of that vilde race, and stablished my peace." To many a one which came unto her schoole, • What is there else," sayd he “left of their rout? Whom she did put to death deceived like a foole. Declare it boldly, daine, and doe not stand in dout.”
She comming forth, whenas she first beheld " Then wote you, sir, that in this church hereby
The armed prince with shield so blazing bright There stands an idole of great note and name,
Her ready to assaile, was greatly queld, The which this gyant reared first on hie,
And much dismayd with that dismayfull sight, And of his owne vaine fancies thought did frame: That backe she would have turd for great atlright: To whom, for endlesse horrour of his sharpe, But be gan her with courage fierce assay, lle offred up for daily sacrifice
That forst her turne againe in her despight My children and my people, burnt in flame To save herselfe, least that he did her slay ; With all the tortures that he could devize, [guize. And sure he had herslaine, had she not turnd her way. The more t'aggrate his god with such bis blouddy “ And underneath this idoll there doth lie
Tho, when she saw that she was forst to fight, An hideous inonster, that doth it defend,
She flew at him like to an hellish feend, And feedes on all the carkasses that die
And on his shield tooke hold with all her might,
As if that it she would in peeces rend,
Or reave out of the Hand that did it hend:
Strongly he'strove out of her greedy gripe
To loose his shield, and long while did contend;
But, when he could not quite it, with one stripe Even blasphémous words, which she doth bray Out of her poisnous entrails fraught with dire decay." Her lions clawes he from her feete away did wipe. Which when the prince heard tell, his heart gan eafue
With that aloude she gan to bray and yell, For great desire that monster to assay;
And fowle blasphemous speaches forth did cast, And prayd the place of her abode to learne:
And bitter curses, horrible to tell; Which being shew'd, he gan bimselfe streightway
That even the temple, wherein she was plast, Thereto addresse, and his bright shield display. Did quake to heare, and nigh asunder brast ; So to the church lic came, where it was told Tho with her huge long taile she at him strooke, The monster underneath the altar lay;
That made him stagger and stand halfe agbast There he that idoll saw of massy gold
With trembling joynts, as he for terrour shooke; Most richly made, but there no monster did behold. Who nought was terrifide but greater courage tooke. Upon the image with bis naked blade
As when the mast of some well-timbred hulke Three times, as in defiance, there he strooke; Is with the blast of some outra gious storme And, the third time, out of an hidden shade Blowne downe, it shakes the bottome of the bulke, There forth issewd from under th' altars smooke And makes her ribs to cracke as they were torne ja A dreadfull feend with fowle deformed looke, Whilest still she stands as stonisht and forlorne; That stretcht itselfe as it had long lyen still; So was he stound with stroke of her huge taile: And her long taile and fethers strongly shooke, But, ere that it she backe againe had borne, That all the temple did with terrour fill;
He with his sword it strooke, that without faile Yet himn nought terrifide that feared nothing ill. He joynted it, and mard the swinging of her faile.
Then gạn she cry much louder than afore, There as he traveld by the way, he met
The use of armes, and battell quite forgone: But then the feend herselfe more fiercely teard To whom as he approcht, he knew anone Uppon her wide great wings, and strongly flew That it was he which whilome did attend With all her body at his head and beard,
On faire Irene in her affliction, That had he not foreseene with heedfull vew, (rew: When first to Faery court he saw her wend, And thrown his shield atween, she had him done to Unto his soveraine queene her suite for to commend.
But, as she prest on him with heavy sway, Whom by his name saluting, thus be gart;
Well tride in all thy ladies troubles than
Whiles she alone is left, and thou here found?
“ For she presuming on th' appointed tyde,
And then and there for triall of her right
“And now he hath to her prefixt a day, Whom when she saw so joyously come forth,
By which if that no champion doe appeare, She gan reioyce and shew triumphant chere,
Which will her cause in battailous array Lauding and praysing his renowned worth
Against him justifie, and prove her cleare By all the names that honorable were.
Of all those crimes that he gainst her doth reare, Then in he brought her, and her shewed there
She death shall sure aby." Those tidings sad The present of his paines, that monsters spoyie,
Did much abash sir Artegall to heare, And eke that idoll deem'd so costly dere;
And grieved sore, that through his fault she had Whom he did all to peeces breake, and foyle
Fallen into that tyrants hand and usage bad. In Gilthy durt, and left so in the loathely soyle.
Then thus replide; “ Now sure and by my life, Then all the people which beheld that day Too much am I to blame for that faire maide, Gan shout aloud, that unto Heaven it rong; That have her drawne to all this troublous strife, And all the damzels of that towne in ray
Through promise to afford her timely aide, Came dauncing forth, and ioyous carrols song: Which by default I have not yet defraide: So him they led through all their streetes along But witnesse unto me, ye Heavens ! that know Crowned with girlonds of immortal baies;
How cleare I am from blame of this upbraide: And all the vulgar did about them throng
For ye into like thraldome ne did throw, To see the man, whose everlasting praise
And kept from complishing the faith which I didowe: They all were bound to all posterities to raise.
“ But now aread, sir Sergis, how long space There be with Belgè did awhile remaine
Hath he her lent a champion to provide.”
“Ten daies," quoth he," he graunted hath of grace,
For that he weeneth well before that tide With safe assuraunce and establishment.
None can have tidings to assist her side : Then to his first emprize his mind he lent,
For all the shores, which to the sea accoste, Full loath to Belgè and to all the rest ;
He day and night doth ward both farre and wide, Of whom yet taking leave thenceforth he went,
That none can there arrive without an hoste : And to his former iourney him addrest;
So her he deemes already but a damned ghoste." On which long way he rode, ne ever day did rest. But turne we now to noble Artegall;
“ Now turne againe," sir Artegall then sayd; Who, having left Mercilla, streightway went “ For, if I live till those ten daies have end, On his first quest, the which him forth did call, Assure yourselfe, sir Knight, she shall have ayd, To weet, to worke Irenaes franchisement,
Though I this dearest life for her doe spend." And eke Grantortoes worthy punishment.
So backeward he attone with him did wend. So forth he fared, as his manner was,
Tho, as they rode together on their way, With onely Talus wayting diligent,
A rout of people they before them kend, Through many perils; and much way did pas, Flocking together in confusde array ; Till nigb unto the place at length approcht he has. As if that there were some tumultuous affray.
To which as they approcht the cause to know, “And now he hath this troupe of villains sent They saw a knight in daungerous distresse
By open force to fetch her quite away: Of a rude rout him chasing to and fro,
Gainst whom myselfe I long in vaine have bent That sought with lawlesse powre him to oppresse, To rescue her, and daily meanes assay, And bring in bondage of their brutishnesse : Yet rescue her thence by no meanes I may; And farre away, amid their rakehell bands, For they doe me with multitude oppresse, They spide a lady left all succourlesse,
And with unequall might doe overlay, Crying, and holding up her wretched bands [stands. That oft I driven am to great distresse, To him for aide, who long in vaine their rage with And forced to forgoe th' attempt remédilesse.” Yet still he strives, ue any perill spares,
“ But why have ye,” said Artegall, “ forborne To reskue her from their rude violence;
Your owne good shield in daungerous dismay? And like a lion wood amongst them fares,
That is the greatest shame and foulest scorne, Dealing his dreadfull blowes with large dispence, Which unto any knight behappen may, Gainst which the pallid death findes no defence : To loose the badge that should his deedes display." But all in vaine; their numbers are so great, To whom sir Burbon, blushing halfe for shame; That naught may boot to banishe them from thence; “ That shall I unto you," quoth he, “ bewray; For, soone as he their outrage backe doth beat, Least ye therefore mote happily me blame, (came. They turne afresh, and oft renew their former threat. And deeme it doen of will, that through inforcement And now they doe so sharpely, him assay, “ True is that I at first was dubbed knight That they his shield in peeces' battred have, By a good knight, the knight of the Redcrosse; And forced him to throw it quite away,
Who, when he gave me armes in field to fight, Fro dangers dread his doubtfull life to save; Gave me a shield, in which he did endosse Albe that it most safety to him gave,
His deare Redeemers badge upon the bosse : And much did magnifie his noble name:
The same long while I bore, and therewithall
“ But for that many did that shield envie,
That bloudie scutchiv being battred sore
I layd aside, and have of late forbore ; They were, as well approv'd in many a doubt, Hoping thereby to have my love obtayned : Backe to recule; untill tbat yron man
Yet can I not my love have nathëmore; With his huge flaile began to lay about;
For she by force is still fro me detayned, (ed." From whose sterne presence they diffused ran, [fan. And with corruptfull brybes is to untruth mistraynLike scattred schaffe, the which the wind away doth
To whom thus Artegall; “ Certes, sir Knight, So when that knight from perill cleare was freed, Hard is the case the which ye doe complaine ; He drawing neare began to greete them faire, Yet not so hard (fur nought so hard may light And yeeld great thankes for their so goodly deed, That it to such a streight mote you constraine) In saving him from daungerous despaire
As to abandon that which doth containe Of those which sought his life for to empaire: Your honours stile, that is, your warlike shield. Of whom sir Artegail gan then enquere
All perill ought be lesse, and lesse all paine The whole occasion of his late misfare,
Then losse of fame in disaventrous field: And who he was, and what those villaines were, Dye, rather then doe ought that mote dishonour The which with mortall malice him pursu'd so nere.
yield!" To whom he thug ; "My name is Burbon hight, “ Not so," quoth he; “ for yet, when time doth Well knowne, and far renow med heretofore, My former shield I may resume againe: (serve, Untill late mischiefe did uppon me light,
To temporize is not from truth to swerve, That all my former praise hath blemisht sore : Ne for advantage terme to entertaine, And that faire lady, which in that uprore
Whenas necessitie doth it constraine." Ye with those caytives saw, Flourdelis hight, “ Fie on such forgerie,” said Artegall, Is mine owne love, though me she have forlore; “ Under one hood to shallow faces twaine: Whether withheld from me by wrongfull might, Kuights ought be true, and truth is one in all : Or with her owne good will, I cannot read aright. Of all things, to dissemble, fouly may befall!" “ But sure to me her faith she first did plight “ Yet let me you of courtesie request," To be my love, and take me for her lord;
Said Burbon, “ to assist me now at need Till that a tyrant, which Grandtorto hight, Against these pesants which have me opprest, With golden giftes and many a guilefull word And forced me to so infamous deed, Entyced her to him for to accord.
That yet my love may from their hands be freed." O, who may not with gifts and words be tempted! Sir Artegall, albe he earst did wyte Sith which she hath me ever since abbord,
His wavering mind, vet to his aide agreed, And to my foe hath guilefully consented :
And buckling him eft sounes unto the fight (might. Ay me, that ever guyle in wemen was invented !
Did set upon these troupes with all his powre and
Who flocking round about them, as a swarme Nathlesse the yron man did still pursew
Ne ceasscd not, till all their scattred crew
Artegall doth sir Burbon aide,
And blames for changing shield: The raskall manie soone they overthrew ; [subdew. He with the great Grantorto fights, But the two knights themselves their captains did And slaieth him in field. At last they came whereas that ladie bode, O Sacred hunger of ambitious mindes, Whom now her keepers had forsaken quight And impotent desire of men to raine! To save themselves, and scattered were abrode: Whom neither dread of God, that devils bindes, Her halfe dismayd they found in doubtfull plight, Nor lawes of men, that common-weales containe, As neither glad nor sorie for their sight;
Nor bands of nature, that wilde beastes restraine, Yet wondrous faire she was, and richly clad Can keepe from outrage and from doing wrong, In roiall robes, and many iewels dight;
Where they may hope a kingdome to obtaine: Bat that those villens through their usage bad No faith so firme, no trust can be so strong, Thein fouly rent, and shamefully defaced had. No love so lasting then, that may enduren long. But Burbon, streight dismounting from his steed, Witnesse may Burbon be; whom all the bands, Unto her ran with greedie great desyre,
Which may a knight assure, had surely bound, And catching her fast by her ragged weed
Untill the love of lordship and of lands Would have embraced her with hart entyre:
Made him become most faithless and unsound: But she, backstarting, with disdainefull yre And witnesse be Gerioneo found, Bad him avaunt, ne would unto his lore
Who for like cause faire Belgè did oppresse, Allured be for prayer nor for meed:
And right and wrong most cruelly confound : Whom when those knights so froward and forlore And so be now Grantorto, who no lesse Beheld, they her rebuked and upbrayded sore. Then all the rest burst out to all outragiousnesse. Saya Artegall; “What foule disgrace is this Gainst whom sir Artegall long having since To so faire ladie, as ye seeme in sight,
Taken in hand th' exploit, (being theretoo
Appointed by that mightie Faerie prince,
Through other great adventures hethertoo
Had it forslackt: but now time drawing ny,
To the sea-shore he gan his way apply, Whose goodly light then Phoebus lampe doth shine To weete if shipping readie he mote there descry, more cleare?
Tho, when they came to the sea-coast, they found “ Why then will ye, fond dame, attempted bee A ship all readie, as good fortune fell, Unto a strangers love, so lightly placed,
To put to sea, with whom they did compound For guiftes of gold or any worldly glee,
To passe them over where them list to tell : To leave the love that ye before embraced, The winde and weather served them so well, And let your fame with falshood be defaced ? That in one day they with the coast did fall; Fie on the pelfe for which good name is sold, Whereas they readie found, them to repell, And honour with indignitie debased !
Great hostes of men in order martiall, Dearer is love then life, and fame then gold; [ho!d.” Which them forbad to land, and footing did forstali. But dearer then them both your faith once plighted
But nathëmore would they from land refraine: Much was the ladie in her gentle mind
But, whenas nigh unto the shore they drew Abasht at bis rebuke, that bit her neare;
That foot of man might sound the bottome plaire, Ne ought to answere thereunto did find :
Talus into the sea did forth issew
[threw; But, hanging down her head with heavie cheare, Though darts from shore and stones they at huius Stood long amaz'd as she amated weare:
And wading through the waves with stedfast sway, Which Burbon seeing, her againe assayd;
Maugre the might of all those troupes in vew, And, clasping twixt his armes, her up did reare Did win the shore; whence he then chast away Upon his steede, whiles she no whit gainesayd : And made to fly like doves, whom th' eagle doth So bore her quite away nor well nor ill apayd.