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But who wyl knowe all the experience,
It behoveth hym to have great lernynge
In many thinges, wyth true intelligence,
Or that he can have perfyte rekenynge
In every nombre by expert connynge.
To reherse in Englysshe more of this science,
It were foly and the great neclygence.
I thought full longe, till I had a syght
Of La Bell Pucell, the most fayre ladye;
My minde upon her was bothe day and nyght,
The fervent love so perst me inwardly,
Wherfore I went anone right shortly
Unto the toure swete and melodyous,
Of dame Musyke so gaye and gloryous.
OF MUSIKE: MUNDAIN, HUMAYN, AND INSTRUMENTAL.
WHAN splendent Phebus, in his midday spere,
Was hyght in Gemine in the fresshe season
Of lusty Maye, with golden beames clere,
And derke Diane made declynacion;
Whan Flora florisshed in this nacion,
I called to mynde right inwardly
The reporte of Fame so muche ententifly
Of La Bell Pucell in the toure musycall,
And ryght anone unto the toure I went;
Where I sawe a temple made of christal,
In whiche Musyke, the lady excellent,
Played on base organs expedient,
Accordyng well unto dyopason,
Dyapenthe, and eke dyetesseron.
In this temple was great solempnyte,
And of muche people there was great prease;
I loked about whether I coude se
La Bell Pucell, my langour to cease;
I coude not se her; my payne dyd encrease,
Tyl that I spyed her above, in a vaute,
Whiche to my hert did make so sore assaute,
Wyth her beaute clere and swete countenaunce,
The stroke of love I coulde nothynge resyste:
And anone, wythout lenger cyrcumstaunce,
To her I wente, or that her person wyste;
Her thought I knewe not, she thought as she lyst;
By her I stode, with herte sore and faynte,
And dyd my selfe wyth her sone acquaynt.
The comyn wyt dyd full lytell regarde
Of dame Musyke the dulcet armony;
The eres herde not, for the mynde inwarde
Venus had rapte and taken fervently:
Imaginacion wrought full prively.
The fantasy gave perfyte jugement
Alway to her for to be obedyent.
By estymacion muche doubtfully I cast
Whether I should by long tyme and space
Atteyne her, or els to love in wast.
My herte sobbed and quaked in this case;
I stode by her ryght nere in the place,
Wyth many other fayre ladyes also,
But so fayre as she I never sawe no mo.
The feste done, dame Musyke dyd go;
She folowed after, and she wolde not tary.
Fare well, she sayde, for I must parte you fro.
Alas! thought I, that fortune doth so vary;
My sadde body my hevy hert did cary;
I coude not speke, my herte was nere broken,
But wyth my head I made her a token.
Whan she was gone, inwardly than wrought
Upon her beaute my mynde retentyfe;
Her goodly fygure I graved in my thought;
Except her selfe all were expulcyfe;
My mynde to her was so ententyfe,
That I folowed her into a temple ferre,
Replete wyth joy, as bryght as any sterre;
Where dulcet Flora her aromatyke dewe
In the fayre temple adowne dyd dystyll,
All abrode the fayre dropes dyd shewe,
Encensynge out all the vapours yll;
With suche a swetenes Flora dyd fulfyll
All the temple, that my gowne well shewed
The lycoure swete of the droppes endewed.
And so to a chambre full solacyous
Dame Musyke wente wyth La Bell Pucell;
All of jasper, wyth stones precyous,
The rofe was wrought, curyously and well;
The wyndowes glased marvaylously to tell.
With cloth of tyssue in the rychest maner
The walles were hanged hye and cyrculer.
There sat dame Musyke, with all her mynstrasy;
As tabours, trumpettes, with pipes melodious,
Sakbuttes, organs, and the recorder swetely,
Harpes, lutes, and crouddes ryght delycyous;
Cymphans, doussemers, wyth claricimbales glorious.
Rebeckes, clarycordes, eche in theyr degre,
Dyd sytte aboute theyr ladyes mageste.
Before dame Musike I dyd knele adowne,
Saying to her: O fayre lady plesaunt,
Your prudence reyneth most hye in renowne,
For you be ever ryght concordant
With perfyte reason, whiche is not variaunt;
I beseche your grace, with all my diligence,
To instructe me in your noble science.
It is, she sayde, right gretely proffitable;
For musike doth sette in all unyte
The discorde thynges whiche are variable
And devoydeth myschiefe and greate iniquite.
Where lacketh musyke there is no pleynte;
For musyke is concorde and also peace,
Nothyng without musyke may well encreace.
The vii. scyences in one monacorde,
Eche upon other do full well depende;
Musyke hath them so set in concorde,
That all in one may right well extende.
All perfite reason they do so comprehende,
That theyr waye and perfite doctryne
To the joye above, whiche is celestine.
And yet also the perfite physyke,
Which appertayneth well to the body,
Doth well resemble unto the musyke,
Whan the inwarde intrayles tourneth contrary,
That nature can not worke dyrectly;
Then doth physike the partes interiall
In ordre set to their originall.
But yet physyke can not be lyberall
As the vii. science by good auctorite,
Which ledeth the soule the way in specyall
By good doctrine to dame Eternite;
Onely of phisike it is the properte
To ayde the body in every sekenes,
That is right frayle and full of bryttilnes.
And because phisyke is appendaunt
Unto the body by helpe of medecyne,
And to the soule nothing approtenaunt,
To cause the body for to enclyne
In eternal helth so the soule to domyne,
For to the body the science seven
Doth teche to lede the soule to heven.