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Title: Animaduersions uppon the annotacions and corrections of some imperfections of impressiones of Chaucer's workes - 1865 edition
Author: Thynne, Francis, 1545?-1608
Language: English
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The text is based on the 1865 EETS edition of Thynne’s _Animadversions_.
Two purely typographic features have been adopted from the 1876 Chaucer
Society re-edition of the same MS. Passages printed in brackets in 1865
have been changed to 1876’s parentheses; conversely, letters and whole
words supplied by the editor are shown in brackets, reserving italics
for expanded abbreviations. A few apparent errors were corrected from
the 1876 text. Some other differences between the two editions are
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as a table of contents.]



  Chaucer’s Workes.

    The author is vexed that Master Speight did not consult him on
      his new edition of Chaucer.
    Also vexed at a side blow at his father’s edition, and justifies
      him as editor.
    His father’s collection of MS. Chaucers and their curiosity.
    The Pilgrime’s Tale telling forth the evil lives of churchmen.
    William Thynne in favour with Henry VIII., who promiseth to
      countenance him.
    The promise broken through the power of Wolsey.
    The most part of Colin Clout written at William Thynne’s house
      at Erith.
    Chaucer’s works like to be destroyed by parliament.
    Reasons why the Pilgrime’s Tale should be Chaucer’s.
    How William Thynne’s collection of Chaucer’s MS. was dispersed
    He differeth from Master Speight on Chaucer’s family.
    Chausier, one who hoseth or shueth a man.
    Chaucer his arms injustly undervalued.
    Philippa of Henault came not over with Prince Edward.
    Bartholomew de Burgersh sent for Philippa of Henault.
    The conjecture that Chaucer’s ancestors were merchants, of no
    Master Speight misquoteth Gower.
    Chaucer submitteth his works to Gower, not Gower to Chaucer.
    Gower the poet was not of the Gowers (or Gores) of Stittenham.
    Gower’s chaplette for knighthood not for poetry.
    The chaplette of roses a peculiar ornament of honour.
    The knighting of Erle Mortone of Normandye.
    Chaucer being a grave man unlikely to beat a Franciscan Fryer but?
    The lawyers not in the temple till the latter part of Edward III.
    Speight knoweth not the name of Chaucer’s wife, nor doth Thynne.
    The children of John of Gaunt born pre-nupt, and legytymated by
      the Pope and the Parliament.
    Chaucer’s children and their advauncement and of the Burgershes.
    Serlo de Burgo uncle and not brother to Eustace.
    Jane of Navarre maryed to Henry IV., in the 5th year of his reign.
    The de la Pools gained advancement by lending the King money, but
      William was not the first that did so.
    The clergy offended that the temporal men were found as wise as
    A merchant by Attorney is no true merchant.
    Alice, the wife of Richard Neville, was daughter of Thomas
    He correcteth Master Speight his dates and history of printing.
    The Romante of the Rose began by Guillm̄ de Loris, and finished
      by John de la Meune.
    Why the dream of Chaucer cannot be the book of the Duchess.
    John of Gaunt, his incontinency.
    Doubteth master Speight’s ability in the exposition of old words,
      but commendeth his diligence and knowledge.
    Aketon or Slevelesse jacket of plate for the war.
    A besant is a besant, and not a duckett.
    Fermentacione is fermentacione, and not dawbing even
    Orfrayes not Goldsmith’s work, but frysed cloth of gold,
      a manufacture peculiar to the English.
    Oundye and Crispe meaneth wavy like water.
    Resager is ratsbane or arsenic.
    Begyns are nuns, though it cometh to mean superstitious and
      hypocritical women from their nature.
    Citrinatione or perfect digestion.
    Forage is old and hard provision made for horses and cattle in
      winter, or metaphorically, or to help out the ryme it may mean
    Heroner is a long-winged hawk for the heron.
    The Hyppe is the berye of the sweet bryer or eglantine.
    Nowell meaneth more than Christmas.
    Porpherye is a peculiar marble, not marble in common.
    Sendale, a sylke stuffe.
    The trepegett is not the battering-ram, but an engine to cast
    Wiuer or Wyvern, a serpent like unto a dragon.
    Autenticke meaneth a thing of auctoritye, not of antiquitye.
    Abandone is not liberty though Hollyband sayeth so.
    Of the Vernacle.
    Master Thynne would read Campaneus for Capaneus, and giveth
    Liketh the reading of Eros, but preferreth that of Heros,
      and giveth reasons.
    Of florins and their name from the Florentines.
    Sterling money taketh its name from the Esterlings.
    King John of France, his ransom of three millions of florens.
    Of the oken garland of Emelye.
    Eyther for euerye, an overnice correction.
    The intellect of Arcite had not wholly gone, or he would not have
      known Emelye.
    Straught, a better word than haughte.
    Visage for vassalage, an impertinent correction.
    Leefe for lothe, a nedeless correction.
    It is more likely that Absolon knocked than that he coughed at
      the window.
    Surrye or Russye, indifferent which.
    Cambuscan is Caius canne.
    “That may not saye naye,” better than “there may no wighte say
    Theophraste, not Paraphraste.
    The wife of Bath’s Prologue taken from the author of Policraticon.
    Country, not Couentry.
    Maketh, not waketh.
    Hugh of Lincoln.
    “Where the sunne is in his ascensione,” a good reading.
    Kenelm slain by Queen Drida.
    Master Speight mistaketh his almanack.
    The degrees of the signe are misreckoned, not the signe itself.
    Mereturicke is a corruption of Merecenrycke, or the kingdom of
    Pilloures of silver borne before Cardinalls.
    Liketh best the old reading of “change of many manner of meates.”
    And also the old reading of “myters” more than one or two for
      the sake of the meter.
    The lordes sonne of Windsore is in the French Romant of the rose,
      but is there spelled Guindesores.
    Master Thynne knoweth not clearly why the Baron should be called
      of Windsor.
    The ordeal was not tryall by fier only, but also by water, nor
      for chastity only, but for many other matters.
    The fyery ordeal was by going on hote shares and cultors, not
      going through the fyre. The mother of Edward confessor passed
      over nine burnynge shares.
    The ordeal taken away by the court of Rome, and after by Henry
    The stork bewrayeth not adultery but wreaketh the adultery of
      his owne mate.
    The plowman’s tale is wrong placed.
    Chaucer’s proper works should be distinguished from those
      adulterat and not his.
    There were three editions of Chaucer before William Thynne
      dedicated his to Henry VIII.
    The first editions being very corrupt, William Thynne augmented
      and corrected them.
    Master Speight hath omytted many auctors vouched by Chaucer.
    It should be Harlottes, and not Haroldes.
    The king of Ribalds or Harlottes, an officer of great accompt
      in times past.
    Johannes Tyllius maketh mention of a Rex Ribaldorum.
    Also Vincentius Luparius maketh him an honourable officer.
    The Rex Ribaldorum was like unto our Marshall. The Marshalls
      duties and his powers over Harlotts and lost men.
    Master Thynne being a herold liketh not that false semblance
      should be thought one.
    Hate was a Moueresse or stirrer of debate, not a minoresse.
    Molinet calleth Hate a Ducteress, or leader.]



  uppon the Annotacions and correct{i}ons of some
  imperfect{i}ons of impress{i}ones
  of Chaucer’s workes (sett
  downe before tyme and
  nowe) reprinted in the
  yere of our lorde

  Sett downe by

  “Sortee pur bien ou ne sortee rien.”

  Now Newly Edited from the MS. in the
  Bridgewater Library


  G. H. KINGSLEY, M.D., F.L.S.

  Published for the Early English Text Society,
  by N. Trübner & Co., 60, Paternoster Row.


  John Childs and Son, Printers.


Although only the grandson of the first of his name, the author of the
following interesting specimen of 16th-century criticism came of a
family of great antiquity, of so great an antiquity, indeed, as to
preclude our tracing it back to its origin. This family was originally
known as the “De Botfelds,” but in the 15th century one branch adopted
the more humble name of “Thynne,” or “of the Inne.” Why the latter name
was first assumed has never been satisfactorily explained. It can hardly
be supposed that “John de la Inne de Botfelde,” as he signed himself,
kept a veritable hostelry and sold ale and provender to the travellers
between Ludlow and Shrewsbury, and most probably the term Inn was used
in the sense which has given us “Lincoln’s Inn,” “Gray’s Inn,” or
“Furnivall’s Inn,” merely meaning a place of residence of the higher
class, though in this case inverted, the Inn giving its name to its

However obtained, the name has been borne by the most successful branch
of the De Botfelds down to the present Marquess of Bath, who now
represents it. Much interesting matter connected with the family was
collected by a late descendant of the older branch, Beriah Botfeld, and
published by him in his “Stemmata Botvilliana.”

The first “John of the Inn” married one Jane Bowdler, by whom he had a
son Ralph, who married Anne Hygons, and their son William became clerk
of the kitchen, and according to some, master of the household to Henry
VIII. He married in the first place a lady who, however she may have
advanced her husband’s prospects at court, behaved in a manner which
must have considerably marred his satisfaction at her success. Those who
wish to study the matrimonial sorrows of “Thynnus Aulicus,” as he calls
him, may consult Erasmus in his Epistolæ, lib. xv. Epist. xiv.

His second marriage to Anne Bond, daughter of William Bond, clerk of
green cloth and master of the household to Henry VIII., was more
fortunate, and by her he had daughters and one son, our Francis Thynne.

Though his son gives him no higher position in the court of Henry VIII.
than the apparently humble one of clerk of the kitchen, he is careful to
let us know that the post was in reality no mean one, and that “there
were those of good worship both at court and country” who had at one
time been well pleased to be his father’s clerks. That he was a man of
superior mind there is no question, and we have a pleasant hint in the
following tract of his intimacy with his king, and of their mutual
fondness for literature. To William Thynne, indeed, all who read the
English language are deeply indebted, for to his industry and love for
his author we owe much of what we now possess of Chaucer. Another
curious bit of literary gossip to be gleaned from this tract is that
William Thynne was a patron and supporter of John Skelton, who was an
inmate of his house at Erith, whilst composing that most masterly bit of
bitter truth, his “Colin Clout,” a satire perhaps unsurpassed in our

William Thynne rests beside his second wife, in the church of
Allhallows, Barking, near the Tower of London, where there are two
handsome brasses to their memory. That of William Thynne represents him
in full armour with a tremendous dudgeon dagger and broadsword, most
warlike guize for a clerk of the kitchen and editor of Chaucer. The
dress of his wife is quite refreshing in its graceful comeliness in
these days of revived “farthingales and hoops.” These brasses were
restored by the late Marquess of Bath. Would that the same good feeling
for things old had prevented the owners of the “church property” from
casing the old tower with a hideous warehouse.

The Sir John Thynne mentioned in the “Animadversions” was most probably
a cousin of Francis. He married the daughter of Sir Thomas Gresham, the
builder of the Royal Exchange, part of whose wealth was devoted by his
son-in-law to the building of the beautiful family seat of Long Leat,
in Wiltshire, in which work he was doubtless aided indirectly by the
Reformation, for, says the old couplet,

  “Portman, Horner, Popham, and Thynne,
  When the monks went out they came in.”

Francis Thynne was born in Kent, probably at his father’s house at
Erith, about 1550. He was educated at Tunbridge school under learned
Master Proctor, thence to Magdalen College, Oxford, and then, as the
manner was, to the Inns of Court, where he lay at Lincoln’s Inn for a
while. Some men are born antiquarians as others are born poets, and we
may be pretty certain that it was at Thynne’s own desire that his court
influence was used to procure him the post of “Blanch Lyon pursuivant,”
a position which would enable him to pursue studies, the results of
which, however valuable in themselves, but seldom prove capable of being
converted into the vulgar necessities of food and raiment. Poor John
Stowe, with his license to beg, as the reward of the labour of his life,
is a terrible proof of how utterly unmarketable a valuable commodity may

Leading a calm and quiet life in the pleasant villages of Poplar and
Clerkenwell, in “sweet and studious idleness,” as he himself calls it,
the old herald was enabled to accumulate rich stores of matter, much of
which has come down to us, principally in manuscript, scattered through
various great libraries, which prove him to have deserved Camden’s
estimate of him as “an antiquary of great judgment and diligence.” It
would seem that he had entertained the idea of following in his father’s
footsteps, and of becoming an editor of Chaucer, and that he had even
made some collections towards that end. The appearance of Speight’s
edition probably prevented this idea being carried out, and the evident
soreness exhibited in this little tract very probably arose from a
feeling that his friend had rather unfairly stolen a march upon him.
However the wound was not deep, and Speight made use of Thynne’s
corrections, and Thynne assisted Speight, in new editions, with all
friendship and sympathy.[1] I suspect him of dabbling in alchemy and
the occult sciences. He shows himself well acquainted with the terms
peculiar to those mysteries, and hints that Chaucer only “enveyed”
against the “sophisticall abuse,” not the honest use of the Arcana.
Moreover in the British Museum (MS. add. 11,388) there is a volume
containing much curious matter collected by him on these subjects, and
not only collected but illustrated by him with most gorgeous colours and
wondrous drawing, worthy of the blazonry of a Lancaster Herald. The
costumes however are carefully correct, and give us useful hints as to
the fashion of the raiment of our ancestors. From the peculiar piety and
earnestness (most important elements in the search for the philosopher’s
stone), of the small “signs” and prayers appended to these papers, it
is, I think, clear, that he was working in all good faith and belief.
Possibly the following lines, which seem to have been his favourite
motto, may have been inspired by the disappointment and dyspepsia
produced by his smoky studies and their ill success,

  “My strange and froward fate
    Shall turn her whele anew
  To better or to payre my fate,
    Which envy dothe pursue.”

    [Footnote 1: “To the readers. After this booke was last printed,
    I understand that M. Francis Thynn had a purpose, as indeed he
    hath when the time shall serve, to set out Chaucer with a coment
    in our tongue, as the Italians have Petrarke and others in their
    language. Whereupon I purposed not to meddle any further in this
    work, although some promise made to the contrarie, but to referre
    all to him; being a gentleman for that purpose inferior to none,
    both in regard to his own skill, as also of those helps left to
    him by his father. Yet notwithstanding, Chaucer now being printed
    againe I was willing not only to helpe some imperfections, but
    also to add some things whereunto he did not only persuade me, but
    most kindly lent me his helpe and direction. By this means most of
    his old words are restored: proverbes and sentences marked: such
    Notes as were collected, drawne into better order and the text by
    olde copies corrected.” Speight’s Chaucer, 1602.]

On the 22nd of April, 1602, he was with great ceremony advanced to the
honour of Lancaster Herald. He never surrendered his patent, and as his
successor entered on that post in November, 1608, he is supposed to have
died about that date, though some postpone his death till 1611. He
married Elizabeth, daughter and co-heiress of Thomas de la Rivers of
Bransbe, but left no issue.

There are many points of interest to be picked out of the following
honest and straightforward bit of criticism, if we examine it closely:
and, firstly, as to its author? Is there not something very
characteristic in its general tone, something dimly sketching a shadowy
outline of a kindly, fussy, busy, querulous old man, much given to tiny
minutiæ, a careful copier with a clean pen, indefatiguable in collecting
“contributions” to minor history; one jealous of all appearance of
slight to his office, even to being moved to wrath with Master Speight
for printing “Harolds” instead of “Harlotts,” and letting him know how
mightily a “Harold” like himself would be offended at being holden of
the condition of so base a thing as False Semblance? Perhaps the more so
from a half-consciousness that the glory of the office was declining,
and that if the smallest opening were given, a ribald wit might create
terrible havock amongst his darling idols. How delicately he snubs
Master Speight for not calling on him at Clerkenwell Green (How would
Speight have travelled the distance in 1598? It was a long uphill walk
for an antiquarian, and the fields by no means safe from long-staff
sixpenny strikers); and how modestly he hints that he would have derived
no “disparagement” from so doing; showing all the devotion to little
matters of etiquette of an amiable but irritable old gentleman of our
own day.

But mark this old gentleman’s description of his father’s collection of
Chaucer’s MS.! Had ever a Bibliophile a more delightful commission than
that one of William Thynne’s, empowering him to rout and to rummage
amongst all the monasteries and libraries of England in search of the
precious fragments? And had ever a Bibliophile a greater reward for his
pleasant toils? “Fully furnished with a multitude of books, emongst
which one coppye of some part of his works subscribed in various places
‘Examinatur Chaucer’!” Where is this invaluable MS. now? It is worth the
tracing, if it be possible, even to its intermediate history. Was it one
of those stolen from Francis Thynne’s house at Poplar by that
bibliomaniacal burglar? or was it one of those which in a fit of
generosity, worthy of those heroic times, he gave to Stephen Batemann,
that most fortunate parson of Newington? Is this commission to be
regarded as some slight proof that the spoliation of the monasteries was
not carried on with the reckless Vandalism usually attributed to the

We learn from this tract that William Thynne left no less than
twenty-five copies of Chaucerian MS. to his son, doubtless but a small
tything of the entire number extant, showing that there were men amongst
the monks who could enjoy wit and humour even when directed against
themselves, and that there must have been some considerable liberality
if not laxness of rule amongst the orders of the day. It would, I fancy,
be difficult to find amongst the monkeries of our own time (except
possibly those belonging to that very cheery order the Capuchines) an
abbot inclined to permit his monks to read, much less to copy, so
heretical a work as the Canterbury Tales, however freely he winked at
the introduction of French nouvellettes.

But though some may have enjoyed Chaucer in all good faith, there were
others who saw how trenchant were the blows he dealt against the
churchmen of his time, and what deadly mischief to their pre-eminence
lurked under his seeming _bonhommie_. Wolsey thought it worth his while
to exert his influence against him so strongly as to oblige William
Thynne to alter his plan of publication, though backed by the promised
protection of Henry VIII. And the curious action of the Parliament
noticed in the tract (p. 7) was doubtless owing to the same
influence:[2] an assumption of the right of censure by the Parliament
which seems to have gone near to deprive us of Chaucer altogether. The
Parliament men were right in regarding the works of Chaucer as mere
fables, but they forgot that fables have “morals,” and that these morals
were directed to the decision of the great question of whether the
“spiritual” or the “temporal” man was to rule the world, a question
unhappily not quite settled even in our own time.

    [Footnote 2: Urry, in his Ed. of Chaucer, says that the Canterbury
    Tales were exempt from the prohibition of the Act of 34 Henry
    VIII. “For the advancement of true religion.” I find no notice of
    this in the Act in the “Statutes at large,” 1763. He also refers
    to Foxe’s Acts and Monuments, which is also merely negative on the

The notice of that other sturdy reformer, John Skelton (p. 7) is also
very interesting, and gives us a hint of the existence of a “protesting”
feeling in the Court of Henry VIII. before there was any reason for
attributing it to mere private or political motives. From the way in
which it is mentioned here, I suspect that the more general satire
“Colin Clout” preceded the more directly personal one of “Why come ye
nat to court?” which lashes Wolsey himself with a heartily outspoken
virulence which would hardly have been tolerated by him when in the
zenith of his power. It was not improbably written whilst its author was
safe in sanctuary under Bishop Islip. William Thynne, court favourite
though he was, could never have kept Skelton’s head on his shoulders
after so terrible a provocation.

Wherever he may be placed, John Skelton stands alone amongst satirists,
there is no one like him: possibly from a feeling that he was writing on
the winning side, and sure of sympathy and protection, he scorns to hide
his pearls under a dunghill like Rabelais, and utters fearlessly and
openly what he has to say. Even in our own time,

  “Though his rime be ragged
  Tattered and iagged
  Rudely rain-beaten
  Rusty and moth-eaten
  _If ye talke well therewyth
  Yt hath in it some pith_.”

Thynne’s note on the family of Gower (p. 14) is of value as agreeing
with later theories, which deny that Gower the poet was of the Gowers of
Stittenham, the ancestors of the present houses of Sutherland and
Ellesmere. The question is not, however, finally decided, and we have
reason to believe that all the Gowers of Great Britain are descended
from the same family of Guers still flourishing in Brittany. Early
coat-armours are not much to be depended on, and Thynne as a Herald may
lean a little too much towards them. The question is, however, in good
hands, and I hope that before long some fresh light may be thrown
upon it.

The old story of Chaucer’s having been fined for beating a Franciscan
friar in Fleet Street is doubted by Thynne, though hardly, I think, on
sufficient grounds. Tradition (when it agrees with our own views) is not
lightly to be disturbed, and remembering with what more than feminine
powers of invective “spiritual” men seem to be not unfrequently endowed,
and also how atrociously insolent a Franciscan friar would be likely to
be (of course from the best motives) to a man like Chaucer, who had
burnt into the very soul of monasticism with the caustic of his wit,
I shall continue to believe the legend for the present. If the mediæval
Italians are to be believed, the cudgelling of a friar was occasionally
thought necessary even by the most faithful, and I see no reason why
hale Dan Chaucer should not have lost his temper on sufficient
provocation. Old men have hot blood sometimes, and Dickens does not
outrage probability when he makes Martin Chuzzelwit the elder, fell Mr
Pecksniff to the ground.

Much of the tract is taken up by corrections of etymologies, and the
explanation of obscure and obsolete words. It is a little curious that
the word “orfrayes,” which had gone so far out of date as to be
unintelligible to Master Speight, should, thanks to the new rage for
church and clergy decoration, have become reasonably common again. The
note on the “Vernacle” is another bit of close and accurate antiquarian
knowledge worth noting. It is most tantalizing that after all he says
about that mysterious question of “The Lords son of Windsor,” a question
as mysterious as that demanding why Falstalf likened Prince Henry’s
father to a “singing man” of the same place, we should be left as wise
as we were before. We have here and there, too, hints as to what we have
lost from Thynne’s great storehouse of information; how valuable would
have been “that long and no common discourse” which he tells us he might
have composed on that most curious form of judicial knavery, the ordeal;
and possibly much more so is that of his “collections” for his edition
of Chaucer! This last may, however, be still recovered by some fortunate
literary mole.

The notice, by no means clear, but certainly not complimentary, of “the
second editione to one inferior personne, than my father’s editione
was,” may refer to any of the editions of Chaucer which, according to
Lowndes, were printed more or less from William Thynne’s edition in
1542, 1546, and 1555; but from another passage hinting that Speight
followed “a late English corrector whom I forbear to name,” I suspect
that the “inferior personne” was poor John Stowe, and the edition to
have been that edited by him in 1561, the nearest in point of date to
that of Speight.

The manuscript from which this tract is reprinted is, like most of the
treasures of the Bridgewater Library, wonderfully clean and in good
order. It is entirely in the Autograph of Francis Thynne, and was
evidently written purposely for the great Lord Chancellor Egerton,
and bears his arms emblazoned on the title-page. Master Speight most
probably got _his_ copy of Animadversions in a more humble form.

In conclusion may I remark that, as usual, the green silk ribands,
originally attached to the vellum and gold cover, are closely cut away,
probably for the purpose of being converted into shoe-ties, which Robert
Green informs us was the usual destination of those appended to
presentation copies, hinting at the same time that they were generally
the only solid advantage gained by the dedicatee from the honour done


1. The perfect Ambassador, treating of the Antiquity, Privileges, and
Behaviour of men belonging to that Function. 12mo, 1651 & 1652.

(This was first published in 1651 under the title “The application of
certain histories concerning Ambassadors and their functions.” The
title-page only is new. MS. note by Bliss. British Museum, 8005--a.)

2. Annals of Scotland, in some part continued from the time in which Ra.
Holinshead left, being an. 1571 unto the year 1586. London, 1586. fol.

3. “There are also the catalogues of the Protectors, Governors, or
Regents of Scotland during the King’s minority, or the minority of
several kings, or their insufficiency of government. There are also the
catalogues of all Dukes of Scotland by creation or descent, of the
Chancellors of Scotland; Archbishops of St Andrews and divers writers of
Scotland.” _A. a’ Wood._

4. Catalogue of English Cardinals set down in R. Holinshed’s Chronicle
at the end of Q. Mary.

5. “A Discourse of Arms,” dated “Clerkenwell Grene, 5th of Jan., 1593.”
MS. in the College of Arms.

6. “Catalogue of the Chancellors of England.” MS. in the Bridgewater

7. “Collections for the History of England.” MS. in Bridgewater Library.

8. Animadversions on Speight’s Chaucer, MS. in Bridgewater Library.

9. Several Collections of Antiquities. Notes concerning Arms, monumental
Antiquities, &c. MS. Cotton’s Lib. Cleopatra, C. 3. p. 62.

10. A discourse of the duty and office of a Herald of Arms, ad. 1605.
MS. Bib. Ashmol. n. 835.

11. Missellanies of the Treasury. MS. 1599.

12. Matters concerning Heralds, and Tryal of Armes and the Court
Military. MS. Bib. Ashmol. 12 (printed in Hearne’s Collection of Curious

13. Names of the Earls Marshall of England, A.D. 1601. MS. Bib. Ashmol.

14. Epitaphia. Sive monumenta Sepulchrorum Anglici et Latini quam
gallice. MS.

“In the castrations to Hollingshed’s Chronicles are the four following
discourses by this Author, which were suppressed from political motives,
they have been added to the late quarto Edition.”

15. The Collection of the Earls of Leicester, compiled in 1585.

16. The lives of the Archbishops of Canterbury, written in 1586.

17. Treatise of the Lord Cobham. (Is this the “Lives of the Lords Cobham
of Cobham, Randale and Harborough,” British Mus. MS. add. 12,514.
f. 56?)

18. The catalogue of the Lord Wardens of the Cinque Ports, and
constables of Dover Castle, as well in the time of King Edward surnamed
the Confessor, as since the reign of the conqueror. MS. 1585 (Was in the
library of More, Bishop of Eley, and now in the British Museum. MS. add.

19. Of Stirling Money.

20. Of what antiquity shires were in England.

21. Of the antiquity and etymology of terms and fines for administration
of justice in England.

22. Of the antiquity of the houses of Law.

23. Of Epitaphs.

24. On the antiquity, &c., of the high Steward of England.

25. The antiquity and office of Earl Marshall. (These last seven are
printed in “Hearne’s Curious Discourses.” 8vo, 1775.)

26. Discourse of bastards. Brit. Mus. MS. add. 4176, fol. 139.

27. The Plea between the advocate and the anti-advocate concerning the
Bath and Batchelor Knights. Brit. Mus. MS. add. 12,530.

28. Annals of England. Mus. Brit. MS. add. 926, 1017, 12,514.

29. The kinges book of all the border Knyghtes, Squiers, and gentlemen
of this realm of England, by Francis Thynne, 1601, MS. Mus. Brit. MSS.
add. 11,388.

(The same volume contains much curious matter collected and illustrated
by Thynne--principally bearing on the philosopher’s stone. The principal
paper is a rhyming Latin poem, “De Phenicæ sive de Lapide Philosophico,”
referred to in the tract.)

Collections out of Domus Regni Angliæ. Nomina Episcoporum in Somerset.
Nomina Saxonica de Donatoribus a Regibus Eadfrido, Eadgare et Edwardo,
Catalogus Episcoporum, Barton and Wells. A book of collections and
commentaries de historia et Rebus Britannicis.

Collections out of manuscript, Historians Registers of Abbies, Leger
books, and other antient manuscripts.


+To the righte Honorable his singular goode Lorde Sir Thomas
Egertone knighte lorde keper of the greate seale and Master of
the Rooles of the Chancerye.+

It was (Ryghte honorable and my verye good lorde) one annciente
and gretlye estemed custome emongste the Romans in the heigh[t]e
of their glorye, that eche one, accordinge to their abylytye or
the desarte of his frende, did in the begynnynge of the monthe
of Januarye (consecrated to the dooble faced godd Janus one the
fyrste daye whereof they made electione of their cheife officers
and magystrates) presente somme gyfte unto his frende as the
noote and pledge of the contynued and encresed amytye betwene
them, a pollicye gretlye to be regarded, for the manye good
effectes whiche issue from so woorthye cause. This custome not
restinge in the lymyttes of Italye, but spredinge with the
Romans (as did their language and many other their usages and
lawes) into euerye perticuler Countrye where theyr powre and
gouermente stretched. passed also ouer the Oceane into the litle
worlde of Brytannye, being neuer exiled from thence, nor frome
those, whome eyther honor, amytye, or dutye doth combyne. ffor
whiche cause lest I myghte offende in the breche of that moste
excellente and yet embraced Custome, I thynke yt my parte to
presente unto yo{u}r Lo{rdship} suche poore neweyeres gyfte as
my weake estate and the barrennesse of my feble skyll will
permytte: Wherefore, and because Cicero affirmethe, that he
whiche hathe once ouer passed the frontiers of modestye must for
euer after be impudente, (a grounde w{hi}che I fynde fully
veryfyed in my selfe, havinge once before outgonne the boundes
of shamefastnesse in presentinge to yo{u}r Lordshippe my
confused collect{i}ons and disordered discourse of the
Chauncelors)[3] I ame nowe become utterlye impudente in not
blusshinge to salute you agayne (in the begynnynge of this newe
yere) with my petye animadvers{i}ons, uppon the annotac{i}ons
and corrections delivered by Master Thomas Speghte uppon the
last edit{i}one of Chaucer’s workes in the yere of oure
redempt{i}one 1598; thinges (I confesse) not so answerable to
yo{u}r Lordshippes iudgmente, and my desyre, as boothe your
desarte and my dutye doo challenge. But althoughe they doo not
in all respectes satisfye youre Lordshippes expectac{i}one and
my goode will, (accordinge as I wyshe they sholde), yet I dobt
not but yo{u}r lordshippe (not degeneratinge from youre former
curtesye wontinge to accompanye all youre act{i}ons) will
accepte these trifles from yo{u}r lovinge well-willer, in suche
sorte, as I shall acknowledge my selfe beholdinge and endebted
to yo{u}r Lordshippe for the same. whiche I hoope yo{u}r
Lordshippe will the rather doo (with pardonynge my presumptione)
because you haue, by the former good acceptance of my laste
booke, emboldened me to make tryall of the lyke acceptance of
this pamfelette. Wherefore yf yo{u}r Lordshippe shall receve yt
curteouslye (and so not to dischorage mee in my sweete and
studiouse idlenesse) I will hereafter consecrate to yo{u}r
lykinge some better labor of moore momente and higher subiecte,
answerable to the excellencye of yo{u}r iudgemente, and mete to
declare the fulnesse of the dutyfull mynde and service I beare
and owe unto your Lordshippe, to whome in all reuerence I
commytte this simple treatyce. Thus (withe hartye prayer
comendinge youre estate to the Almightye (who send to yo{u}r
  Lordshippe manye happye
  and helthfull yeres
  and to me the
  contynuance of
  youre honorable fauo{r})
  I humblye take my leave.
  Clerkenwell grene
  the xx of
  Yo{u}r Lordshippes wholye to
  Francis Thynne.

    [Footnote 3: “_The names and Armes of the Chancellors
    collected into one Catologue by ffrancis Thynn declaring the
    yeres of the reignes of the kinges and the yere of our Lorde in
    whiche they possessed that office._” --_Folio MS. Bridgewater

TO MASTER THOMAS SPEIGHTE ffrancis Thynn sendeth greeting.

[Sidenote: The author is vexed that Master Speight did not
consult him on his new edition of Chaucer.] THE INDUSTRYE AND
LOVE (MASTER SPEIGHT) whiche you haue used, and beare, uppon and
to oure famous poete Geffrye Chaucer, deseruethe bothe
comendat{i}one and furtherance: the one to recompense yo{u}r
trauayle, the other to accomplyshe the duetye, whiche we all
beare (or at the least yf we reuerence lernynge or regarde the
honor of oure Countrye, sholde beare) to suche a singuler
ornamente of oure tonge, as the woorkes of Chaucer are: Yet
since there is nothinge so fullye perfected, by anye one,
whereine some imp{er}fect{i}one maye not bee founde, (for as the
prouerbe is Bernardus, or as others have Alanus, non videt
omnia,) you must be contented to gyve me leave in discharge of
the duetye and love whiche I beare to Chaucer, (whome I suppose
I have as great intereste to adorne withe my smale skyll as anye
other hath, in regarde that the laborious care of my father made
hym most acceptable to the worlde in correctinge and augmentinge
his woorkes,) to enter into the examinat{i}one of this newe
edit{i}one, and that the rather, because you with _Horace_ his
verse “si quid novisti rectius istis, candidus imperti,” have
willed all others to further the same, and to accepte yo{u}r
labors in good p{ar}te, whiche as I most willingly doo, so
meaninge but well to the worke, I ame to lett yo{u} understande
my conceyte thereof, whiche before this, yf yo{u} wolde have
vouchesafed my howse, or have thoughte me worthy to have byn
acqueynted with these matters, (whiche yo{u} might well have
donne without anye whatsoeuer dispargement to yo{ur}selfe,) you
sholde haue understoode before the impressione, althoughe this
whiche I here write ys not nowe uppon selfe will or fonnd
conceyte to wrangle for one asses shadowe, or to seke a knott in
a rushe, but in frendlye sorte to bringe truthe to lighte,
a thinge whiche I wolde desire others to use towardes mee in
whatsoeuer shall fall oute of my penne. Wherefore I will here
shewe such thinges as, in mye opynione, may seme to be touched,
not medlinge withe the seconde editione to one inferior personne
then my fathers editione was.

[Sidenote: Also vexed at a side blow at his father’s edition,
and justifies him as editor.] Ffyrste in yo{ur} forespeche to
the reader, yo{u} saye “secondly the texte by written copies
corrected” by whiche worde corrected, I maye seme to gather,
that yo{u} imagine greate imperfect{i}one in my fathers
editione, whiche peraduenture maye move others to saye (as some
unadvisedlye have sayed) that my father had wronged Chaucer:
wherefore to stoppe that gappe, I will answere, that Chaucers
woorkes haue byn sithens printed twyce, yf not thrice, and
therfore by oure carelesse (and for the most p{ar}te unlerned)
printers of Englande, not so well performed as yt ought to bee:
so that of necessytye bothe in matter, myter and meaninge, yt
must needes gather corrupt{i}one, passinge throughe so manye
handes, as the water dothe the further yt run{n}ethe from the
pure founteyne. To enduce me and all others to iudge his
edit{i}one (whiche I thinke yo{u} neuer sawe wholye together,
beinge fyrst printed but in one coolume in a page, whereof I
will speake hereafter) was the p{er}fectest: ys the ernest
desire and love my father hadde to have Chaucers woorkes
rightlye to be publy{s}hed. for the performance whereof, my
father not onlye used the helpe of that lerned and eloquent
kn[i]ghte and antiquarye Sir Briane Tuke, but had also made
greate serche for copies to p{er}fecte his woorkes, as apperethe
in the ende of the squiers tale, in his edit{i}one printed in
the yere 1542; [Sidenote: His father’s collection of MS.
Chaucers and their curiosity.] but further had comiss{i}one to
serche all the liberaries of Englande for Chaucers works, so
that oute of all the Abbies of this Realme (whiche reserved anye
monumentes thereof) he was fully furnished w{i}th multitude of
Bookes. emongst w{hic}he one coppye of some p{ar}te of his
woorkes came to his handes subscribed in diuers places withe
“examinatur Chaucer.” By this Booke, and conferringe manye of
the other written copies together, he deliuered his edit{i}one,
fullye corrected, as the amendementes under his hande, in the
fyrst printed booke that euer was of his woorkes (beinge stamped
by the fyrste impress{i}one that was in Englande) will well
declare, at what tyme he added manye thinges w{hi}che were not
before printed, as you nowe haue donne soome, of whiche I ame
p{er}swaded (and that not w{i}thoute reasone) the originall came
from mee. [Sidenote: The Pilgrime’s Tale telling forth the evil
lives of churchmen.] In w{hi}che his edit{i}one, beinge printed
but w{i}th one coolume in a syde, there was the pilgrymes tale,
a thinge moore odious to the Clergye, then the speche of the
plowmanne; that pilgrimes tale begynnynge in this sorte;

  “In Lincolneshyre fast by a fenne,
  Standes a relligious howse who doth yt kenne,” &c.

In this tale did Chaucer most bitterlye enveye against the
pride, state, couetoussness, and extorc{i}one of the Bysshoppes,
their officialls, archdeacons, vicars generalls, comissaryes,
and other officers of the spirituall courte. The invent{i}one
and order whereof (as I have herde yt related by some nowe of
good worshippe bothe in courte and countrye but then my fathers
clerkes,) was, that one comynge into this relligious howse,
walked upp and down the churche, beholdinge goodlye pictures of
Bysshoppes in the windowes, at lengthe the manne contynuynge in
that contemplatione, not knowinge what Byshoppes they were,
a grave olde manne withe a longe white hedde and berde, in a
large blacke garment girded unto hym, came forthe and asked hym,
what he iudged of those pictures in the windowes, who sayed he
knewe not what to make of them, but that they looked lyke unto
our mitred Byshoppes; to whome the olde father replied, yt is
true, they are like, but not the same, for oure byshoppes are
farr degenerate from them, and withe that, made a large
discourse of the Byshoppes and of their courtes.

[Sidenote: William Thynne in favour with Henry VIII., who
promiseth to countenance him.] This tale when kinge henrye the
eighte had redde, he called my father unto hym saying Williame
Thynne I dobte this will not be allowed, for I suspecte the
Byshoppes will call the in questione for yt, to whome my father,
beinge in great fauore with his prince, (as manye yet lyvinge
canne testyfye,) sayed yf yo{ur} grace be not offended, I hoope
to be protected by yo{u}, whereuppon the kinge bydd hym goo his
waye and feare not. All whiche not withstandinge, [Sidenote:
The promise broken through the power of Wolsey.] my father was
called in quest{i}one by the Bysshoppes and heaved at by
cardinall Wolseye his olde enymye, for manye causes, but mostly
for that my father had furthered Skelton to publishe his Collen
Cloute againste the Cardinall, [Sidenote: The most part of Colin
Clout written at William Thynne’s house at Erith.] the moste
p{ar}te of whiche Booke was compiled in my fathers howse at
Erithe in Kente. But for all my fathers frendes, the Cardinalls
p{er}swadinge auctorytye was so greate withe the kinge, that
thoughe by the kinges favor my father escaped bodelye daunger,
yet the Cardinall caused the kinge so muche to myslyke of that
tale, that chaucer must be newe printed and that discourse of
the pilgrymes tale lefte oute, and so beinge printed agayne,
some thynges were forsed to be omitted, and the plowmans tale
(supposed, but untrulye, to be made by olde Sir Thomas Wyat,
father to hym which was executed in the firste yere of Quene
Marye, and not by Chaucer,) with muche ado p{er}mitted to passe
with the reste, [Sidenote: Chaucer’s works like to be destroyed
by parliament.] in suche sorte that in one open parliamente
(as I have herde St. Johne Thynne reporte, beinge then a member
of the howse,) when talke was had of Bookes to be forbidden,
chaucer had there for euer byn condempned, had yt not byn that
his woorkes had byn counted but fables. [Sidenote: Reasons why
the Pilgrime’s Tale should be Chaucer’s.] Whereunto yf yo{u}
will replye, that their colde not be any suche pilgrymes tale,
because Chaucer in his prologues makethe not mentione of anye
suche persoune, whiche he wolde haue doune yf yt had byn so: for
after that he had recyted the knighte, the squyer, the squiers
yeomane, the prioresse, her noone, and her thre prests, the
monke, the fryer, the marchant, the clerke of Oxenforde,
seriante at the lawe, franckleyne, haberdassher, goldsmythe,
webbe, dyer and tapyster, cooke, shypmane, Doctor of physecke,
wyfe of Bathe, p{ar}soune and plowmane, he sayeth at the end of
the plowmans prologue,

  There was also a Reue, and a Millere
  A sumpneure, and a Pardoner
  A manciple and my selfe there was no mo.

All whiche make xxx persons with Chaucer: wherefore yf there had
byn anye moore, he wolde also haue recyted them in those verses,
whereunto I answere, that in the prologes he lefte oute some of
those w{hic}he tolde their tales; as the chanons yomane, because
he came after that they were passed out of theyre Inne, and did
overtake them, as in lyke sorte this pilgrime did or mighte doo,
and so afterwardes be one of their companye, as was that chanons
yeomane, althoughe Chaucer talke no moore of this pilgrime in
his prologe then he doothe of the chanons yeomane; whiche I
dobte not wolde fullye appere, yf the pilgrimes prologe and tale
mighte be restored to his former light they being nowe looste,
as manye other of Chaucers tales were before that, as I am
induced to thinke by manye reasons.

[Sidenote: How William Thynne’s collection of Chaucer’s MS. was
dispersed abroad.] But to leave this, I must saye that in those
many written Bookes of Chaucer, w{hic}he came to my fathers
hands, there were manye false copyes, whiche Chaucer shewethe in
writinge of Adam Scriuener, (as yo{u} have noted) of whiche
written copies there came to me after my fathers deathe some
fyve and twentye; whereof some had moore and some fewer tales,
and some but two and some three. w{hic}he bookes beinge by me
(as one nothinge dobting of this whiche is nowe donne for
Chaucer) partly dispersed aboute xxvj years agoo, and partlye
stoolen out of my howse at Popler: I gave divers of them to
Stephen Batemanne person of Newington, and to div{er}s other,
whiche beinge copies unp{er}fecte and some of them corrected by
my fathers hande yt maye happen soome of them to coome to some
of yo{ur} frendes handes, whiche I knowe yf I see agayne: and yf
by anye suche written copies yo{u} have corrected Chaucer, yo{u}
maye as well offende as seme to do good. But I judge the beste,
for in dobtes I will not resolve with a settled judgement,
althoughe yo{u} may iudge this tediouse discourse of my father a
needlesse thinge in setting forthe his diligence in breaking the
yce, and givinge lighte to others, who may moore easely
p{er}fecte then begyne any thinge, for facilius est addere
qua{m} Invenire, and so to other matters.

[Sidenote: He differeth from Master Speight on Chaucer’s
family.] Under the tytle of chaucers countaye,[4] yo{u} seme to
make yt probable that Richarde Chaucer vinetener of Londone, was
Geffrye Chaucers father, But I holde that no moore the{n} that
Johne Chaucer of Londone, was father to Richarde; of whiche
Johne I fynde in the recordes in Dorso Rotulor. patent. 24 de
anno 30. Ed. 1. in the towre. that kinge Edwarde the firste had
herde the compleinte of Johne chaucer of London, who was beaten
and hurte, to the domage of one thousand pownde (that some
amountinge at this daye to thre thowsande pownde;) for whiche a
comiss{i}one went forthe to enquire thereof. wherbye yt semethe
that he was of some Reconynge. But as I cannott saye that Johne
was father to Richarde, or hee to Geffroye: So yet this muche I
will deliuer in settinge downe the antiquytye of the name of
chaucer, that his anncesters (as you well coniecture) were
strangers, as the etymon of his name (beinge frenche in Englishe
synyfyinge one who shueth or hooseth a manne) dothe prove,
[Sidenote: Chausier, one who hoseth or shueth a man.] for that
dothe the Etymon of this worde chausier presente unto us, of
whiche name I have founde (besides the former recyted Johne) on
Elias chauseryr lyvinge in the tyme of Henrye the thirde and of
Edwarde the firste, of whome the record of pellis exitus in the
receyte of the Exchequier in the firste yere of Edwarde ye
firste hathe thus noted: “Edwardus dei gra{tia} &c. Liberate de
thesauro Nostro Elie chauseryr decem solidos super arreragia
triu{m} obuloru{m} diurnoru{m} quos ad vita{m} sua{m} per
litteras domini. H. Regis patris nostri, percepit ad
scaccar{iu}m nostru{m}. datu{m} per manu{m} Walleri Merton
cancellarii nostri apud West {minsteriu}m 24 Julii anno regni
nostri primo.” with whiche carractres ys Geffry Chausyer written
in the Recordes in the tyme of Edwarde the thirde and Richarde
the seconde. So that yt was a name of office or occupat{i}one,
whiche after came to be the surname of a famelye, as did Smythe,
Baker, Porter, Bruer, Skynner, Cooke, Butler, and suche lyke,
and that yt was a name of office apperethe in the recordes of
the towre, where yt is named Le Chaucer, beinge more annciente
then anye other of those recordes; for in Dorso clause of
10: H. 3 ys this: Reginaldus mirifir^s et alicia uxor eius
attornaveru{n}t Radulfu{m} le Chausier contra Joh{ann}em Le
furber et matildem uxorem eius de uno messuagio in London. This
chaucer lyvinge also in the time of kinge John. And thus this
muche for the Antiquytye and synificat{i}one of Chaucer,
w{hic}he I canne prove in the tyme of Edward the 4 to signyfye
also, in oure Englishe tonge, bootes or highe shoes to the calfe
of the legge: for thus hathe the Antique recordes of Domus Regni
Anglie, ca. 53 for the messengers of the kinges howse to doo the
kings comanndementes: that they shalbe allowed for their Chauses
yerely iiij^s viij^d: But what shall wee stande uppon the
Antiquyte and gentry of Chaucer, when the rolle of Battle Abbeye
affirmeth hym to come in with the Conquerer. [Sidenote: Chaucer
his arms injustly undervalued.] Under the title of Chaucers
countrye, yow sett downe that some Heraldes are of opyny-o{n}e
that he did not discende of any great howse; whiche they gather
by his armes. This ys a slender coniecture, for as honorable
howses and of as greate Antiquytye haue borne as meane armes as
Chaucer, and yet Chaucers armes are not so meane eyther for
coolo{r}, chardge or partic{i}one as some will make them.
And where yo{u} saye, yt semethe lykelye, Chaucers skill in
Geometrye considered, that he tooke the groundes and reasons
of his armes oute of seuen twentye and eight and twentye
proposit{i}ones of Euclide’s first booke, that ys no inference
that his armes were newe or fyrst assumed by hym oute of
Geometricall proportions, because he was skyllfull in Geometrye:
for so yo{u} maye saye of all the auncient armes of England
w{hic}he consyste not of anymalls or vegitalls. for all other
armes whiche are not Anymalls and vegitalls, as Cheuerons,
pales, Bendes, Checkes, and suche lyke, stande uppon
geometricall proport{i}one{s}. And therfore howe greate so euer
their skyll bee, which attribute that choyce of armes to Chaucer
[they] had no moore skyle in armes then they needed.

    [Footnote 4: _Error for family?_]

[Sidenote: Philippa of Henault came not over with Prince
Edward.] In the same title also, yo{u} sett downe Quene
Isabell, &c. and her sonne prince Edwarde withe his newe maried
wyfe retourned oute of Henalte. In whiche are two
unperfect{i}ons. the first whereof ys, that his wyfe came oute
of Henalte w{it}h the prince, but that is not soo, for the
prince maryed her not before he came into England, since the
prince was onlye slenderly contracted and not maryed to her
before his arryvall in Englande, beinge two yeres and moore
after that contracte, (betwene the erle of henalt and his
mother,) about the latter ende of the seconde yere of his
reigne, thoughe others haue the firste, the solempnytye of that
mariage beinge donne at Yorke. besides she came not ouer with
Quene Isabell and the prince, but the prince sent for her
afterwardes, and so I suppose sayeth Hardinge in his cronicle,
yf I do not mysconceve yt, not havinge the historye now in my
handes. But whether he saye so or no, yt ys not materiall,
because the recordes be playne, that he sent for her into
Henalte in the seconde yere of his reigne in october, and she
came to the kinge the 23 of Januarye followinge, w{hic}he was
aboute one daye before he beganne the thirde yere of his reigne,
wherunto he entred the 25 of Januarye. and for prooffe of the
tyme when and whoome the Kinge sente, and what they were allowed
therefore, the pellis exitus of the Exchequier remayninge in
master warders office hathe thus sett downe to the forthe daye
of februarye [Sidenote: Bartholomew de Burgersh sent for
Philippa of Henault.] “Bartholomeo de Burgershe nuper misso ad
partes Douor ad obuiandu{m} filiæ comitis Hannoniæ consorti
ipsius Regis &c.” but this recorde followinge is most pleyne,
shewing bothe who went for her, the day when they tooke their
yourneye towardes henalte, with the daye when and where they
presented her to the kinge after their retorne into Englande,
and the daye one whiche they wer payed their charges, beinge the
forthe of marche one w{hic}he daye yt is thus entred in the
records of pellis exitus, Michaell. 2. ed. 3. “Rogero couentry
&c Lichefeld episcopo nuper misso in nuntiu{m} domini Regis ad
partes Hannoniæ pro matrimonio inter dominu{m} Regem et filiam
comitis Hannoniæ contrahendo, ab octavo die octobris proxime
preterito, quo die reessit de Notingha{m} ipso domino Rege
ibidem existente, arripiendo iter suu{m} predictu{m}, versus
partes predictas, usqu{e} vicesimu{m} tertiu{m} diem Januarii
proxime sequente{m}, quo die rediit ad ipsu{m} Regem predictu{m}
apud Eboru{m} in comitatiua filiæ comitis Hannoniæ predictæ
utroqu{e} die computato pro cviij diebus percipiendo per diem
iij.^li vj.^s viij.^d pro expensis suis.” Thus muche the
recorde, whiche confirmethe that w{hi}che I go aboute to prove,
that she came not into Englande with prince Edwarde, and that he
was not maryed at that tyme, no, not contracted, but only by
agremente betwene the erle and his mother. [Sidenote: The
conjecture that Chaucer’s ancestors were merchants, of no
valydytye.] Next yo{u} seme to implye by a coniecturall
argumente, that Chaucers auncesters sholde be m{e}rcha{n}ts,
for that in place where they haue dwelled the armes of the
marchantes of the staple haue bin seene in the glasse windowes.
This ys a mere coniecture, and of no valydytye. For the
m{a}rchantes of the staple had not any armes granted to them
(as I haue bin enformed) vntill longe after the deathe of
Chaucers parentes, w{hi}che was aboute the 10 or 12 of Edwarde
the thirde; and those merchantes had no armes before the tyme of
Henrye the sixte, or muchewhat thereaboutes, as I dobt not but
wilbe well proued, yf I be not mysenformed. But admytte the
staplers had then armes, yt ys no argume{n}te that chaucers
auncesters were merchantes because those armes were in the
wyndowes, as you shall well p{er}ceave, yf yo{u} drawe yt into a
syllogisme, and therefore yo{u} did well to conclude, that yt
was not materiall whether they were merchants or noo.

[Sidenote: Master Speight misquoteth Gower.] In the title of
Chaucer’s educat{i}one, yo{u} saye that Gower in his booke
entituled confessio amantis termethe Chaucer a worthye poet,
and maketh hym as yt were the iudge of his woorkes; in w{hi}che
Booke, to my knowledge, Gower dothe not terme hym a worthye
poet, (althoughe I confesse he well deserueth that name, and
that the same may be gathered oute of Gower comendynge hym,)
nether doth he after a sorte (for any thinge I canne yet see)
make hym iudge of his workes, (whereof I wolde be glad to be
enformed,) since these be Gowers woordes, vttered by Venus in
that booke of confessio Amantis:

  And grete well Chaucer when ye mete,
  As my disciple and my poet:
  for in the flowere of his youthe,
  In sondrye wise, as he well couthe,
  of dytyes and of songes glade
  the whiche for my sake he made,
  the laude fulfilled is ouer all:
  wherefore to hym in especiall
  aboue all others I am most holde;
  for thy nowe in his dayes olde,
  thow shalt hym tell this message,
  that he vppon his latter age
  sett an ende of all his werke,
  as he whiche is myne owne clerke
  do make his _testament of Love_,
  as thow hast done thy shrift ab[o]ue,
  so that my Courte yt may recorde, &c.

[Sidenote: Chaucer submitteth his works to Gower, not Gower to
Chaucer.] These be all the verses w{hi}che I knowe or yet canne
fynde, in whiche Gower in that booke mentioneth Chaucer, where
he nether nameth hym worthye poet, nor after a sorte submyttethe
his workes to his iudgmente. But quite contrarye Chaucer doth
submytte the correctione of his woorks to Gower in these playne
woordes, in the latter ende of the fyfte booke of Troylus:

  O Morall Gower, this booke I directe
  To the, and the philosophicall stroode,
  To vouchesafe where nede is to correcte
  Of your benignityes and zeales good.

But this error had in you byn p{ar}doned, yf you had not sett yt
downe as your owne, but warranted with the auctorytye of Bale in
Scriptoribus Anglie, from whence yo{u} haue swallowed yt.
[Sidenote: Gower the poet was not of the Gowers (or Gores) of
Stittenham.] Then in a marginall note of this title yo{u} saye
agayne oute of Bale, that Gower was a Yorkshire manne; but you
are not to be touched therfore, because you discharge yo{ur}
selfe in vouching yo{ur} auctor. Wherfore Bale hath muche
mistaken yt, as he hath donne infynyte thinges in that Booke de
scriptoribus Anglie, beinge for the most parte the collect{i}ons
of Lelande. For in truth yo{u}r armes of this S^r Johne Gower
beinge argent one a cheuerone azure, three leopardes heddes or,
do prove that he came of a contrarye howse to the Gowers of
Stytenham in Yorkeshyre, who bare barrulye of argent and gules a
crosse patye florye sable. Whiche difference of armes semethe a
difference of famelyes, vnlesse yo{u} canne prove that, beinge
of one howse, they altered their armes vppone some iuste
occas{i}one, as that soome of the howse maryinge one heyre did
leave his owne armes and bare the armes of his moother; as was
accustoomed in tymes paste. But this differe{n}ce of Cootes for
this cause, or anye other, (that I colde yet euer lerne,) shall
you not fynde in this famelye of Gower: and therefore seuerall
howses from the fyrst originall. Then the marginall note goeth
further out of Bale, that Gower had one his hedde a garlande of
ivye and rooses, the one the ornamente of a knyghte, the other
of a poet. [Sidenote: Gower’s chaplette for knighthood not for
poetry.] But Bale ys mystaken, for yt ys not a garlande, vnlest
you will metaphoricallye call euerye cyrcle of the hedde a
garlande as Crownes are sometymes called garlandes, from whence
they had their originall, nether ys yt of Ivye, as any manne
whiche seethe yt may well iudge, and therefore not there sett
for anye suche intente as an ensigne of his poetrye, but ys
symplye a chapplett of Roses, suche as the knyghtes in olde tyme
vsed ether of golde, or other embroderye, made after the
fasshone of Roses, one of the peculier ornamentes of a knighte,
as well as his coller of SSS, his guilte swoorde, and spurres.
[Sidenote: The chaplette of roses a peculiar ornament of
honour.] W{hi}che chaplett or cyrcle of Rooses was as well
attributed to knights, the lowest degree of honor, as to the
hygher degrees of Duke, Erle, &c. beinge knyghtes, for so I haue
seene Johne of Gaunte pictured in his chaplett of Rooses; and
kinge Edwarde the thirde gaue his chaplett to Eustace Rybamonte,
only the difference was, that as they were of lower degree, so
had the[y] fewer Rooses placed on their chaplett or cyrcle of
golde, one ornament deduced frome the Dukes crowne whiche had
thee rooses vppon the toppe of the cyrcle, when the knighte had
them onlye vppon the cyrcle or garlande ytselfe. of whiche dukes
crowne to be adorned with little rooses, [Sidenote: The
knighting of Erle Mortone of Normandye.] Mathewe Paris,
speakinge of the creatinge of Johne erle Mortone, duke of
Normandye, in the yere of Christe 1199, dothe saye, Interim
comes Johannes Rothomagu{m} veniens in octavis pasche gladio
ducatus Normaniæ cinctus est, in matrice ecclesia, per
ministeriu{m} Waltheri Rothomage{n}sis Archie{pisco}pi, vbi
Archiepiscopus memoratus ante maius altare in capite eius posuit
circulu{m} aureu{m} habente{m} in su{m}mitate per gyru{m}
rosulas aureas artificialiter fabricatas, whiche chaplett of
Rooses came in the ende to be a bande aboute oure cappes, sette
with golde Buttons, as may be supposed.--In the same title yo{u}
saye, yt semethe that these lerned menne were of the Inner
Temple; [Sidenote: Chaucer being a grave man unlikely to beat a
Franciscan Fryer but?] for that, manye yeres since, master
Buckley did see a recorde in the same howse, where Geffrye
Chaucer was fined two shillinges for beatinge a Franciscane
Fryer in flete-streate. This is a hard collect[i]one to prove
Gower of the Inner Temple, althoughe he studyed the lawe. for
thus yo{u} frame yo{ur} argumente. Mr Buckley founde a recorde
in the Temple, that Chaucer was fyned for beatinge the fryer;
ergo, Gower and Chaucer were of the Temple. But for myne owne
parte, yf I wolde stande vppon termes for matter of Antiquytye
and ransacke the originall of the lawiers fyrst settlinge in the
Temple, I dobte whether Chaucer were of the temple or noe,
vnless yt were towardes his latter tyme, for he was an olde
manne, as appereth by Gower in Confessione Amantis in the xvi
yere of R. 2: when Gower wroote that Booke. [Sidenote: The
lawyers not in the temple till the latter part of Edward III.]
And yt is most certeyne to be gathered by cyrcumstances of
Recordes, that the lawyers were not in the temple vntill
towardes the latter parte of the reygne of kinge Edwarde the
thirde; at w{hi}che tyme Chaucer was a grave manne, holden in
greate credyt, and employed in embassye, so that me thinkethe he
sholde not be of that howse; and yet, yf he then were, I sholde
iudge yt strange that he sholde violate the rules of peace and
gravytye yn those yeares. But I will passe over all those
matters scito pede, and leave euerye manne to his owne
iudgemente therein for this tyme.

[Sidenote: Speight knoweth not the name of Chaucer’s wife, nor
doth Thynne.] IN THE TITLE OF Chawcer’s mariage yo{u} saye,
yo{u} cannotte fynde the name of the Gentlewomanne whome he
maryed. Trulye, yf I did followe the conceyte of others,
I sholde suppose her name was Elizabethe, a waytinge womanne of
Quene philippe, wyfe to Edwarde the thirde & daughter to
Willi{a}m erle of Henalte. but I favor not their oppynyone, for,
althoughe I fynde a recorde of the pellis exitus, in the tyme of
Edwarde the thirde, of a yerely stypende to Elizabethe Chawcer,
domicellæ reginæ Philippæ, wh{ic}he domicella dothe signyfye one
of her waytinge gentlewomen: yet I cannott for this tyme thinke
this was his wyfe, but rather his sister or kinswomanne, who
after the deathe of her mystresse Quene philippe did forsake the
worlde, and became a nonne at Seinte Heleins in london,
accordinge as yo{u} haue touched one of that profess{i}one in
primo of kinge Richarde the seconde.

[Sidenote: The children of John of Gaunt born pre-nupt, and
legytymated by the Pope and the Parliament.] In the Latyne
stemme of Chawcer you saye, speakinge of Katherine Swyneforde,
Que postea nupta Johanni Gandauensi tertij Edwardi Regis filio,
Lancastriæ duci, illi procreavit filios tres et vnica{m}
filia{m}. Wherbye we may inferre that Johne of Gaunte had these
childrene by her after the mariage. Whiche is not soo for he had
all his children by her longe before that mariage, so that they
beinge all illegitimate were enforced afterwarde vppon that
maryage to be legytymated by the poope; & also by acte of
Parliamente, aboute the two & twentythe of kinge Richarde the
seconde; so that yo{u} cannott saye, que postea nupta procreavit
Lancastriæ duci tres filios, etc.

[Sidenote: Chaucer’s children and their advauncement and of the
Burgershes.] In the title of Chawcers children and their
advauncemente, in a marginall noote yo{u} vouche master Campdene
that Barthelmewe Burgershe, knyghte of the Garter, was he from
whome the Burgershes, whose daughter & heyre was maryed to
Thomas Chawcer, did descende. But that is also one error. for
this Barthelmewe was of a collaterall lyne to that S^r Johne
Burgershe the father of Mawde wyfe to Thomas Chawcer; and
therefore coulde not that S^r Johne Burghershe be descended of
this Barthelmewe Burgershe, though hee were of that howse.
[Sidenote: Serlo de Burgo uncle and not brother to Eustace.]
Then, in that title, yo{u} vouche oute of Mr. Campdene that
Serlo de Burgo brother to Eustachius de Vescye builte
Knaresborowe Castle. but that ys not right for this Serlo beinge
called Serlo de Burgo siue de Pembroke was brother to Johne
father to Eustace Vescye, as haue the recordes of the towre, and
so vncle and not brother to Eustace. [Sidenote: Jane of Navarre
maryed to Henry IV., in the 5th year of his reign.] for one
other marginall noote in that tytle, yo{u} saye, that Jane of
Navarre was maryed to Henrye the forthe in the fourthe yere of
his reygne, wherein you followe a late englishe cronicler whome
I forbeare to name.[5] But Walsingha{m} bothe in his historye of
Henry the fourthe, & in his ypodigma, sayethe that she was
maryed the 26 of Januarye in the yere of Christe 1403, whiche
was in the fyfte yere of the kinge, yf you begynne the yere of
oure lorde at the annu{n}tiat{i}one of the Virgine, as we nowe
doo; but this is no matter of great momente. [Sidenote: The de
la Pools gained advancement by lending the King money, but
William was not the first that did so.] ffourthlye in that title
yo{u} seme to attribute the advancemente of the Pooles to
Williame de la poole, merchante of Hull, that lente the kinge a
greate masse of moneye. But this Williame was not the fyrste
advancer of that howse because his father Richarde at Poole
beinge a cheife gouernor in hull, and serving the kings
necessytye with money, was made pincerna Regis, one office of
great accompte; by the same gyvinge the fyrste advancemente to
the succedynge famelye. Whereof the Record to prove Ric. de la
Poole pincerna Regis is founde in the pryvye seales of the
eleventhe yere of kinge Edwarde the thirde, in master wardoures
office, the lorde treasurers clerke. Where yt is in this manner:
Edwardus dei gratia rex Angliæ et dux Acquitaniæ, &c.
Supplicavit nobis dilectus noster Richardus de la Poole Pincerna
noster, vt quum ipse de expensis officii Pincernariæ ac omnibus
aliis officiu{m} illud tangentibus, ad dictu{m} Scaccariu{m} a
festo sancti michaelis anno regni nostri decimo, vsque ad ide{m}
festu{m} proxime sequens plenarie computaverit, et 2090^li:
13^s: et 11^d et vnus obulus sibi per computu{m} illud de claro
debeatur: volumus ei solutione{m} inde, seu aliàs
satisfactione{m} sibi fieri competentem: Nos eius supplicationi
in hac parte, prout iustu{m} est, an{n}uentes, vobis mandamus,
etc. Datu{m} apud Westmonasteriu{m} 14 Decembris, anno regni
nostri vndecimo. To whose sonne this Williame de la Poole the
older, and to his sonne Michaell de la Poole (who was after
Chauncelor) and to his heyres, the kinge graunted fowre hundred
markes by yere out of the custome of Hull, as apperethe in the
record of pellis exitus of 46 Ed. 3. the same Michaell de la
Poole recevinge the arrerages of that Annuytye. for thus yt is
entred in Michaelmas terme one the first of December of that
yere: Michaeli de la poole filio et heredi Will{iel}mi de la
poole senioris per Tallia{m} levata{m} isto die continentem
iij^c lxx^li xviij^s 1^d ob. eidem michaeli liberat per compotum
suum factum ad Scaccariu{m} computator virtute cuiusdam brevis
de magno sigillo, Thesaurario et Baronibus Scaccarii directum
pro huius compoto faciendo, de quoda{m} annuo certo iiij^c marc.
per annu{m} quas dominus rex Willielmo de la Poole seniori
defuncto, et michaeli filio suo et heredibus suis de corpore suo
exeuntibus, de Custumia in portis ville de kingeston super Hull
per litteras suas patentes concess: percipendu{m} qua{m}diu
vij^c xxxv^li xviij^s i^d ob. eidem Michaeli per compotu{m}
predictu{m} sic debitu{m}, etc. D{omi}n{u}s Rex mandat vt ei
satisfactionem vel assignationem competentem (in locis vbi ei
celeriter satisfieri poterit) fieret et haberet, per breve de
magno sigillo inter mandata de termino Paschæ anno quadragesimo
tercio, etc. So that Richarde, Michaell de la Pooles
grandfather, (a magistrate of greate welthe in Hull,) was the
fyrste that gaue advancemente to that howse: although Williame,
father to this michaell, were of lyke estate and a knyghte.
nether canne I fynde (nor ys yt lyke) that michaell de la poole
was a marchante, (havinge two such welthy marchantes to his
ancestors before hym,) notwithstandinge that Walsingha{m}
[Sidenote: The clergy offended that the temporal men were found
as wise as themselves.] (moore offended than reasone, as all the
Clergye were against temporall menne who were nowe become chief
officers of the realme; and the spyrituall menne, till then
possessinge those offices, displaced, w{hic}he bredd greate
Sorseye in the Church menne againste them); sayethe that
michaell de la poole fuerit à pueritia magis mercimoniis (vtpote
Mercator Mercatoris filius) quam militia occupatus. [Sidenote:
A merchant by Attorney is no true merchant.] And yet yt may bee
that he mighte have some factors in merchandise, and deale by
his attorneyes as many noble menne and great persons have donne,
whereuppon Walsingham (who wroote longe after) might seme to
call hym merchante by reasone of others mens dealinge for hym,
althoughe in troothe he was neuer merchante in respecte of his
owne persone, (for whiche they are properly called merchantes,)
as may be supposed. [Sidenote: Alice, the wife of Richard
Neville, was daughter of Thomas Montacute.] ffyftlye in the same
title yo{u} saye, that Alice, wyfe of Williame de la poole duke
of Suffolke, had a daughter, by her seconde husbande thomas
montague erle of Sarisberye, named, after her mother, Alice,
maryed to Richarde Neville sonne to Raphe Neuill erle of
Westmerlande, by whome he had issue Richarde, Johne, and George.
But this is nothinge so. for this Alice, the wyfe of Richarde
Neville, (erle of Sarisbery in the righte of the same Alice,)
was daughter of Thomas Montacute erle of Salisburye and of Alice
his wyfe, daughter of Thomas Hollande erle of Kente; and not of
Alice daughter to Thomas Chawcer and widdowe to William de la
Poole duke of Suffolke.

    [Footnote 5: Stowe.]

[Sidenote: He correcteth Master Speight his dates and history of
printing.] IN THE LATTER END of the title of Chawcers deathe
yo{u} saye, that printinge was brought oute of Germanye in the
yere 1471 being the 37. H. 6. into Englande, beinge fyrst founde
at Magunce by one Johne Cuthembergus, and broughte to Roome by
Conradus one Almayne. But the yere of Christe 1471 was not the
37. H. 6. but the eleuenthe of kinge Edward the fourthe; and, as
some have yt, was not fyrste founde at Magonce or mentz but at
Strasborowe, and perfected at Mago{n}ce. David Chytreus in his
historye sayethe, yt was fyrst founde in anno 1440, and brought
to Rome by Henricus Han[6] a Germane in the yere 1470; whereof
Antonius Campanus framed this excellente epigrame:

  Anser Tarpeii custos Jovis, vnde, quòd alis
    Constreperis, Gallus decidit; vltor adest
  Vlricus Gallus, ne quem poscantur in vsum,
    Edocuit pennis, nil opus esse tuis.

    [Footnote 6: “Hahn,”--German, a cock. “Cognomine Latino
    _Gallus_,” Maittaire _Ann. Typ._ i. 52.]

But others do suppose that yt was invented at Argenterote,
as dothe Mathewe Parker in the lyfe of Thomas Bourchier
Archbyshoppe of Canterburye; whiche for the incertentye thereof
I leave at this tyme to farther examinat{i}one, not havinge nowe
presente leysure therefore.

[Sidenote: The Romante of the Rose began by Guillm̄ de Loris,
and finished by John de la Meune.] IN THE TITLE OF THE augmente
to euerye tale and booke you write, that the Romante of the
Roose was made in frenche by Johne Clopinell alias Johne Moone;
when in truthe the booke was not made by hym alone: for yt was
begonne by Guillame de Loris, and fynished fourtye yeres after
the death of Loris, by Johne de Meune alias Johne Clopinell, as
apperethe by Molinet, the frenche author of the moralytye vppon
the Romante of the Roose, ca. 50. fo. 57. and may further appere
also in the frenche Romante of the Roose in verse, w{hic}h
Chaucer w{i}th muche of that matter omytted, not havinge
translated halfe the frenche Romante, but ended aboute the
middle thereof. Againste whiche Booke Gersone compiled one
other, intituled La reprobat{i}o{ne} de la Romante del Roose; as
affirmethe the sayed Molinett, in the 107 chapter of the sayed
moralizatione, where he excusethe Clopinell and reprouethe
Gersone for that Booke, because Gersone soughte no further
meanynge than what was conteyned in the outewarde letter, this
Clopinell begynnynge the Romante of the Rose, in these verses of

  Alas my wane hoope nay, pardyee;
  for I will neuer dispayred bee:
  yf happe me fayle, then am I
  vngratious and vnworthy, &c.

[Sidenote: Why the dream of Chaucer cannot be the book of the
Duchess.] Secondlye, under that title yo{u} saye, the woorke,
before this last edit{i}one of Chaucer, termed the Dreame of
Chaucer, is mystermed, and that yt is the Booke of the Duches,
or the Deathe of Blanche. wherein you bee greatlye mysledde in
my conceyte, for yt cannott bee the Booke of the Duches or of
the Deathe of Blanche, because Johne of Gaunt was then but fowre
and twentye yere olde when the same was made, as apperethe by
that tretyse in these verses:

  Then founde I syttinge euen vprighte
  A wonder well faringe knighte,
  By the manner me thought so,
  Of good mokell, and right yonge thereto,
  Of the age of twentye fowre yere,
  Vppon his bearde but little heare.

Then yf he were but fowre and twentye yeres of age, being born,
as hath Walsingha{m}, in the yere of Christ 1339 the 13. of
kinge Edwarde the thirde; and that he was maryed to Blanche the
fourtene calendes of June 1359, the 33 of Ed: the thirde; he was
at this mariage but twentye yeres of age; who within fower yeres
after sholde make his lamentac{i}on for Blanche the duchesse
which must be then dedde. But the duchesse Blanche dyed of the
pestilence in the yere of xxe 1368, as hath Anonimus MS, or
1369, as hath Walsinghame w{hi}che by the first accompte was the
{ix.} and by the last the {x.} yere after the mariage, and sixe
or at the least five yeres after this lamentatione of Johne of
Gaunte made in the fowre and twentye yere of his age. Wherfor
this cannott be the boke of the Duches because he colde not
lamente her deathe before she was deade. And yf you replye that
yt pleinlye apperethe the same treatyce to be mente of the
duches Blaunche, whiche signyfyethe whyte, by which name he
often termethe his ladye there lamented, but especially in these

  Her throte, as I haue memoyre,
  semed as a round towre of yuoire,
  of good gretnesse and not to greate,
  and fayre white she hete,
  that was my ladies name righte;
  she was thereto fayre and brighte,
  she had not her name wronge,
  right fayre sholders and body longe, &c.

I will answere, that there is no necessitye that yt must be of
Blanche the Duchesse because he sayeth her name was white; since
there ys a famelye of that denominatione, and some female of
that lyne myghte be both white in name, and fayre and white in
p{er}sonne; and so had not her name wronge or in veyne, as
Chaucer sayeth. or yt mighte be some other louer of his called
Blanche, [Sidenote: John of Gaunt, his incontinency.] since he
had many paramou{r}s in his youthe, and was not verye contynente
in his age. Wherefore, to conclude, yt apperethe as before, that
yt coulde not be mente of the Duchesse Blanche his wyfe, whiche
dyed long after that compleinte. for whiche cause that Dreame of
Chaucer in mye opynyone may well (naye rather of righte sholde)
contynewe his former title of The Dreame of Chaucer. for that,
wh{ic}he you will haue the Dreame of Chaucer, is his Temple of
Glasse; as I haue seene the title thereof noted, and the thinge
yt selfe confirmethe.

[Sidenote: Doubteth master Speight’s ability in the exposition
of old words, but commendeth his diligence and knowledge.] IN
THE EXPOSITIONE of the olde wordes, as yo{u} shewe greate
diligence and knowledge, so yet in my opynione, unlesse a manne
be a good saxoniste, french, and Italyane linguiste, (from
whence Chaucer hathe borowed manye woordes,) he cannott well
expounde the same to oure nowe vnderstandinges, and therefore
(thoughe I will not presume of much knowledge in these tounges)
yt semeth yet to mee, that in your expositione, soome woordes
are not so fullye and rightlye explaned as they mighte bee,
althoughe peradventure yo{u} haue framed them to make sence.
Wherefore I haue collected these fewe (from many others lefte
for moore leysure) whiche seme to mee not to be fully explaned
in their proper nature, thoughe peradventure yo{u} will seme to
excuse them by a metaphoricall gloose.

[Sidenote: Aketon or Slevelesse jacket of plate for the war.]
Aketon or Haketone you expounde a jackett w{i}thoute sleves,
without any further addit{i}one, that beinge an indiffynyte
speache, and therefore may be entended a comone garmente daylye
vsed, suche as we call a jerken or jackett withoute sleues:
But _haketon_ is a slevelesse jackett of plate for the warre,
couered withe anye other stuffe; at this day also called a
jackett of plate, suche aketon Walter Stapletone, Bishoppe of
Excester and Custos or Wardene of Londone, had vppon hym
secretlye, when he was apprehended and behedded in the twentyeth
yere of Edwarde the seconde.

[Sidenote: A besant is a besant, and not a duckett.] Besante you
expounde a duckett, But a duckett ys farre from a besante, bothe
for the tyme of the invent{i}one, and for the forme; and as I
suppose for the valewe, not withstandinge that Hollybande in his
frenche-Englishe dictionarye make yt of the valewe of a duckett,
whiche duckett is for the most part eyther venetiane or
spanyshe, when the Besante ys mere Grekishe; a coyne well knowen
and vsed in Englande (and yet not therefore one auncient coyne
of Englande, as Hollybande sayethe yt was of france,) emongst
the Saxons before, and the Normans after the Conqueste; the
forme whereof I will at other tyme describe, onlye nowe settinge
downe, that this besante (beinge the frenche name, and in
armorye rightlye accordinge to his nature, for a plate of
golde,) was called in Latine Byzant{i}um, obteyninge that name
because yt was the coyne of Constantinople sometyme called
Bizant{i}um; and because you shall not thinke this any
fic{ti}one of myne owne, I will warrante the same with Williame
of Malmesberye in the fourthe booke De Regibus, who hathe these
wordes: Constantinopolis prim{u}m Bizantiu{m} dicta forma{m}
antiqui vocabuli preferu{n}t imperatorii nu{m}mi Bizantiu{m}
dicta; where one other coppye for nummi Bizantiu{m} hath
Bizantini nu{m}mi, and the frenche hath yt besante or Bezantine,
makinge yt an olde coyne of france, (when he sholde haue sayed
one olde coyne in France and not of France,) of the valewe of a

[Sidenote: Fermentacione is fermentacione, and not dawbing even
metaphorically.] Fermentac{i}o{n}e yo{u} expounde Dawbinge,
whiche cannott anye way be metaphoricallye so vsed in Chaucer,
althoughe yt sholde be improperlye or harsely applied. For
fermentac{i}one ys a peculier terme of Alchymye, deduced from
the bakers fermente or levyne. And therefore the Chimicall
philosophers defyne the fermente to bee anima, the sowle or
lyfe, of the philosophers stoone. Whereunto agreethe Clauiger
Bincing, one chimicall author, sayinge, ante viuificatio{ne}m id
est fermentac{i}o{ne}m, w{hi}che is before tinctinge, or gyvinge
tincture or cooler; that beinge as muche to saye as gyvinge
sowle or lyfe to the philosophers stoone, wherby that may
fermente or cooler or gyue lyfe to all other metaline bodyes.

[Sidenote: Orfrayes not Goldsmith’s work, but frysed cloth of
gold, a manufacture peculiar to the English.] Orfrayes yo{u}
expounde Goldsmythes worke, w{hi}che ys as nere to goldsmythes
woorke as clothe of golde, for this worde orefrayes, beinge
compounded of the frenche worde (or) and (frays, or fryse,) the
Englishe is that w{hi}che to this daye (beinge now made all of
one stuffe or substance) is called frised or perled cloothe of
gold; in Latyne, in tymes past, termed aurifrisium or
aurifrixori{u}m. A thinge well knowen to the Saxons in Englande
before, as to the Normans after, the Conqueste, and therfore
fullye to satisfye you thereof, I will produce twoo
auctorauctors of the weavinge and vse thereof before the
conquest and since, wherin you shall pleynely see what yt was,
and in what acco{m}pt yt was holden, beinge a worke peculier to
the Englishe. The lieger booke of Elye, speakinge of Ediswetha
daughter to Brightnothus, aldermanne, erle or duke, of
northumberlande before the Conquest sayethe; cui tradita
Coveneia, locus monasterio vicinus, vbi aurifrixorie et texturæ
secretiùs cu{m} puellis vacabat; and a little after, Tunica
Rubra purpura per gyrum et ab humeris aurifri vndiq{ue}
circumdatu{m}. Then, after the conquest, mathew Paris speakethe
thereof aboute ornamentes to be sente to the Poope. but because
I haue not my mathewe Paris here, I will vouche one whose name
hathe muche affinytye with hym, and that is Mathewe Parker
Archbyshoppe of Canterburye, who, in the Lyfe of Bonifacius
Archbishoppe of that see, hathe these wordes. “A^o. Domini 1246,
Romæ multi Anglicani aderant Clerici, qui capis vt aiu{n}t
chorealibus, et infulis, ornamentisq{ue} ecclesiasticis, ex
Anglice tunc more gentis, ex lana tenuissima et auro artificiosè
intexto fabricatis, vterentur. Huius modi ornamentoru{m} aspectu
et concupiscentia provocatus Papa, rogavit cuiusmodi essent.
Responsu{m} est, aurifrisia appellari, quia et eminens ex panno
et lana qua{m} Angli fryse appellant, simul contexta sunt. Cui
subridens et dulcedine captus Papa, Vere, inquit,” (for these
are the woordes of Mathewe Paris whiche lyved at that tyme,)
“Hortus noster delitiaru{m} est Anglia, verus puteus est
inexhaustus, et vbi multa abundant, de multis multa sumere
licet. Itaq{ue}, concupiscentia illectus oculorum, litteras
suas Bullatas sacras misit ad Cistercienses in Anglia Abbates,
quoru{m} orationibus se devotè commendabat, vt ipsi hec
aurifrisia speciosissima ad suum ornandu{m} choru{m}
compararent. Hoc Londoniensibus placuit, quia ea tum venalia
habebant, tantiq{ue} quanti placuit vendiderunt.” In whiche
discourse you not onlye see that orefryes was a weued clothe of
golde and not goldsmythe worke, and that Englande had before and
since the conqueste the arte to compose suche kynde of delicate
Cloothe of golde as Europe had not the lyke; for yf yt hadd,
the poope wolde haue made suche prouis{i}one thereof in other
places, and not from Englande. And because you shall not thinke
that yt was onlye vsed of the Clergye, you shall fynde in a
record of the Towre that yt was also one ornamente of the kings
garmente, since the Conqueste, for, in Rotulo Patentiu{m} 6.
Joh{ann}is in Dorso (in whiche the kinge comaunded the templers
to deliuer suche jewells, garmentes, and ornamentes as they had
of the kings in kepinge,) are these wordes: “Dalmaticam de eodem
samitto vrlatani de orfreyes et cu{m} lapidibus.” Whiche is to
saye, the kings Dalmaticall garmente of the same samitte (spoken
of before, whiche was crymsone,) vrled or bordrede (suche as we
nowe calle garded) withe orfreyes.

[Sidenote: Oundye and Crispe meaneth wavy like water.] fforthlye
Oundye and Crispe is by you expounded slyked and curled, whiche
sence althoughe yt may beare after some sorte; yet the proprytye
of the true sence of oundye (beinge an especiall terme
appropriate to the arte of Heraldye) dothe signifye wavinge or
movinge, as the water dothe; being called vndye, of Latyne vnda
for water, for so her haire was oundye, that is, layed in rooles
vppone and downe, lyke waves of water when they are styrred with
the winde, and not slyked or playne, etc.

[Sidenote: Resager is ratsbane or arsenic.] ffyftlye You
expounde not Resager, beinge a terme of Alchymye; as yo{u} leave
manye of them vntouched. This worde sholde rather be resalgar,
wherefore I will shewe yo{u} what resalgar ys in that abstruse
science, whiche Chawcer knewe full well, althoughe he enveye
againste the sophisticall abuse thereof in the chanons Yeomans
Tale. This Resalgar is that w{hi}che by some is called
Ratesbane, a kynde of poysone named Arsenicke, which the
chimicall philosophers call their venome or poysone. Whereof I
coulde produce infynyte examples; but I will gyve yo{u} onlye
these fewe for a taste. Aristotle, in Rosario Philosophoru{m},
sayethe, “nullu{m} tingens venenum generatur absq{ue} sole et
eius vmbra, id est, uxore.” whiche venome they call by all names
presentinge or signifyinge poysone, as a toode, a dragon,
a Basilyske, a serpente, arsenicke, and suche lyke; and by manye
other names, as “in exercitacio{n}e ad turbam philosophorum,”
apperethe, wher aqua simplex is called venenu{m}, Argentum
vivum, Cinnabar, aqua permanens, gumma, acetu{m}, urina, aqua
maris, Draco, serpens, etc. And of this poysone the treatyce _de
phenice_,[7] or the philosophers stoone, written in Gothyshe
rymynge verse, dothe saye;

  Moribunda, corporis virus emanabat
  quod materna{m} faciem ca{n}dida{m} fœdabat.

    [Footnote 7: A copy of this curious poem in Thynne’s
    hand-writing, and marvellously illustrated by him, is in the
    Brit. Mus., MSS. Add. No. 11,388.]

[Sidenote: Begyns are nuns, though it cometh to mean
superstitious and hypocritical women from their nature.] Begyn
and Bigott yo{u} expounde sup{er}sticious hypocrites, whiche
sence I knowe yt maye somewhat beare, because yt sauorethe of
the disposit{i}one of those begins, or Beguines, for that ys the
true wrytinge. But this woorde Begyn sholde in his owne nature
rightlye haue ben expounded, sup{er}sticious or hipocriticall
wemenne, as appereth by chaucer himselfe, w{hi}che nombrethe
them emongest the wemen in the Romante of the Roose when he

  But empresses, & duchesses,
  These queenes, & eke countesses
  These abbasses, & eke Bigins,
  These greate ladyes palasins.

And a little after, in the same Romante, he doth write,

  That dame abstinence streyned
  Tooke one a Robe of camelyne,
  And ganne her gratche as a Bygin.
  A large cover-cherfe of Thredde
  She wrapped all aboute her hedde.

These wemene the Frenche call Beguynes or nonnes; being in
Latyne called Bigrinæ or Biguinæ. Whose originall order,
encrease, and contynuance are sett downe by mathewe Paris and
Mathewe Westm{inster}. But as I sayed, since I haue not my
mathewe Paris at hand, I will sett you downe the wordes of
mathewe Westmynster (otherwise called “Flores Historiarum” or
“Florilegus”) in this sorte. Sub eisdem diebus (w{hi}ch was in
the yere of Christe 1244, and aboute the 28 of kinge Henry the
thirde,) quidam in Almania precipuè se asserentes vitam et
habitu{m} relligionis elegisse, in utroq{ue} sexu, sed maximè
in muliebri, continentia{m}, cu{i}u{s} vitæ simplicitate
profitentes, se voto priuato deo obligaru{n}t. Mulieresq{ue},
quas Bigrinas vulgaritèr vocamus, adeò multiplicatæ sunt, quòd
earu{m} numerus in vna ciuitate, scilicèt Colonia, ad plus quam
mille asseritur ascendisse, etc. After whiche, speakinge yn the
yere of Christe 1250 of the encrease of relligious orders, he
sayeth, Item in Alemania et Francia mulieres, quas Biguinas
nominant, etc.

[Sidenote: Citrinatione or perfect digestion.] Citrinatione
yo{u} do not expounde, beinge a terme of Alchymye. Whiche
Citrinatione is bothe a color and parte of the philosophers
stoone. for, as hathe Tractatus Avicennæ (yf yt be his and not
liber suppositi[ti]us, as manye of the Alchimicall woorkes are
foysted in vnder the names of the best lerned authors and
philosophers, as Plato, Aristotle, Avicen, and suche others,) in
parte of the 7 chapter. Citrinatio est que fit inter albu{m} et
rubru{m}, et non dicitur coolor perfectus, whiche
Citrinat{i}one, as sayethe Arnoldus de Nova Villa, li. i. ca. 5.
nihil aliud est quàm completa digestio. For the worke of the
philosophers stoone, following the worke of nature, hathe lyke
color in the same degree. for as the vrine of manne, being
whityshe, sheweth imp{er}fecte digestione: But when he hathe
well rested, and slepte after the same, and the digestione
p{er}fected: the vrine becomethe citrine, or of a depe yellowe
cooler: so ys yt in Alchymye. whiche made Arnolde call this
citrinatione perfect digestion, or the cooler provinge the
philosophers stoone broughte almoste to the heigh[t]e of

[Sidenote: Forage is old and hard provision made for horses and
cattle in winter,] Forage in one place you expounde meate, and
in other place fodder. boothe whiche properly cannott stande in
this place of chaucer in the reves prologue, where he sayeth,
“my fodder is forage.” for yf forrage be fodder, then is the
sence of that verse, “my fodder is fodder.” But fodder beinge a
generall name for meate gyven to Cattle in winter, and of
affynytie withe foode applied to menne and beasts, dothe onlye
signyfye meate. And so the sence is, “my meate ys forage,” that
is, my meate is suche harde and olde provis{i}one as ys made for
horses and Cattle in winter. for so doth this worde forragiu{m}
in latyne signyfye. and so dothe Chaucer meane. for the word
next before dothe well shewe yt, when the Reve sayeth,

  I ame olde, me liste not play for age,
  Grasse tyme is donne, my fodder is forrage.

[Sidenote: or metaphorically, or to help out the ryme it may
mean grass.] Yet metaphorically yt may be taken for other than
drye horse meate, although improperlye; as Chaucer hathe, in Sir
Topas Ryme, where he makethe yt grasse for his horse, and vseth
the woorde rather to make vpp the ryme than to shewe the true
nature thereof; sayinge,

  That downe he layed hym in that place,
  to make his steede some solace
  and gyve hym good forage.

[Sidenote: Heroner is a long-winged hawk for the heron.] Heroner
yo{u} expounde a certeyne kynde of hawke, whiche is true, for a
gowshawke, sparrowe hawke, tassell, &c. be kyndes of hawkes. But
this heroner, is an especiall hawke (of anye of the kyndes of
longe winged hawkes) of moore accompte then other hawkes are,
because the flighte of the Herone ys moore daungerous than of
other fowles, insomuch, that when she fyndeth her selfe in
danger, she will lye in the ayre vppon her backe, and turne vpp
her bellye towardes the hawke; and so defile her enymye with her
excrementes, that eyther she will blinde the hawke, or ells with
her byll or talons pierce the hawkes brest yf she offer to cease
vppon her.

[Sidenote: The Hyppe is the berye of the sweet bryer or
eglantine.] The Hyppe is not simplye the redde berrye one the
Bryer, vnlest yo{u} adde this epithetone and saye, the redde
Berrye one the swete Bryer, (which is the Eglantyne,) to
distinguyshe yt from the comone Bryer or Bramble beringe the
blacke Berye, for that name Bryer ys comone to them boothe; when
the Hyppe is proper but to one, neither maye yt helpe yo{u} that
yo{u} saye the redd Berye, to distinguyshe yt from the Blacke,
for the blacke berye ys also redde for a tyme, and then may be
called the redde Berye of the Bryer for that tyme.

[Sidenote: Nowell meaneth more than Christmas.] Nowell yo{u}
expounde Christmasse, whiche ys that feaste and moore, for yt is
that tyme, whiche is properlye called the Advente together with
Christmasse and Newe yeres tyde, wherefore the true etymologye
of that worde ys not Christmasse, or the twelve dayes, but yt is
godd with us, or, oure Godde, expressinge to vs the comynge of
Christe in the fleshe, whiche p{er}adventure after a sorte, by
the figure synecdoche, yo{u} may seeme to excuse, placinge ther
xþemas (_Christmasse_) a p{ar}te of this tyme of Nowell for all
the tyme that Nowell conteynethe. for in the same worde is
conteyned sometyme xx, but for the most p{ar}te thirtye dayes
before Christmesse, aswell as the Christmesse yt selfe, that
woorde being deduced as hathe Will{iel}m{u}s Postellus in
Alphabet. 12 Linguarum, from the hebrue worde Noell: for thus he
writethe: ‏‏ נאלnoel, sonat deus noster sive Deus nobis advenit,
solitaq{ue} est hec vox cantari a plebe ante xþi ({Christi})
natalitia viginti aut triginta dies quodam desiderio.

[Sidenote: Porpherye is a peculiar marble, not marble in
common.] Porpherye you expounde marble, w{hi}che m{ar}ble ys
genus, but porpherye is species, for as there is white and grey
marble, so ys there redde marbell, whiche is this porpherye,
a stone of reddish purple coolor, distincte or enterlaced with
white veynes as yo{u} may see in the great pillars entringe into
the royall exchange or burse in Cornhill.

[Sidenote: Sendale, a sylke stuffe.] Sendale you expounde a
thynne stuffe lyke cypres. but yt was a thynne stuffe lyke
sarcenette, and of a rawe kynde of sylke or sarcenett, but
courser and narrower, than the sarcenett nowe ys, as my selfe
canne remember.

[Sidenote: The trepegett is not the battering-ram, but an engine
to cast stones.] Trepegett you expounde a ramme to batter
walles. But the trepegete was the same that the magonell;
for Chaucer calleth yt a trepegett or magonell; wherefore the
trepegett and magonell being all one, and the magonell one
instrumente to flynge or cast stones (as youre selfe
expounde yt) into a towne, or against a towne walles, (an engine
not muche vnlyke to the catapulte, an instrumente to cast forthe
dartes, stones, or arrowes,) the trepeget must nedes also be one
instrumente to cast stones or such lyke against a wall or into a
towne, and not a Ramme to batter wales; since the Ramme was no
engine to flinge anye thinge, but by mens handes to be broughte
and pusshed againste the walles; a thinge farr different in
forme from the magonell or catapulte, as appereth by Vigetius
and Robertus Valturius de re militari.

[Sidenote: Wiuer or Wyvern, a serpent like unto a dragon.] Wiuer
yo{u} expounde not. Wherefore I will tell you, a wyuer is a
kynde of serpent of good Bulke, not vnlyke vnto a dragon, of
whose kinde he is, a thinge well knowen vnto the Heroldes,
vsinge the same for armes, and crestes, & supporters of manye
gentle and noble menne. As the erle of Kent beareth a wiuer for
his creste and supporters, the erle of Pembroke, a wiuer vert
for his creste; the erle of Cumberlande, a wiuer geules for his

[Sidenote: Autenticke meaneth a thing of auctoritye, not of
antiquitye.] Autenticke yo{u} expounde to be antiquytye. But
howe yo{u} may seme to force and racke the worde to Chaucers
meaninge, I knowe not; but sure I ame the proper
signyficat{i}one of autenticke is a thinge of auctoritye or
credit allowed by menne of auctoritye, or the originall or
fyrste archetypu{m} of any thinge; whiche I muse that you did
not remember.

[Sidenote: Abandone is not liberty though Hollyband sayeth so.]
Abandone you expounde libertye; whiche in all Italiane, Frenche,
and Spanishe, signifyeth relinquere, to forsake and leave a
thinge; w{hi}che me thinkethe yo{u} most hardely stretche to
libertye, vnlest yo{u} will saye that, when one forsakethe a
thinge, he leaveth yt at libertye; whiche ys but a streyned
speche, although the frenche Hollybande, not vnderstandinge the
true energye of our tongue, hath expounded yt libertye; whiche
may be some warrante vnto you.

VNDER THE TITLE OF YOURE Annotacions and Corrections.

[Sidenote: Of the Vernacle.] IN YOURE ANNOTACIONS you describe,
oute of the prologues, the vernacle to be a broche or figure,
wherein was sett the instruments wherewith Christe was
crucyfyed, and withall a napkyn whereine was the printe of his
face. but the vernacle did not conteyne the instrumentes of his
deathe, but only the clothe wherein was the figure of his face;
as I conceve yt with others.

[Sidenote: Master Thynne would read Campaneus for Capaneus, and
giveth reasons.] Fo: 1. pa: 2. For Campaneus you wolde reade
Capaneus, wherunto I cannott yelde. for althoughe Statius and
other latine authors do call hym Capaneus; yet all the writers
of Englande in that age call him campaneus; as Gower, in
confessione amantis, and Lidgat in the historye of Thebes taken
out of Statius, and Chaucer hym selfe in many other places. so
that yt semethe they made the pronu{n}tiatione of Campaneus to
be the dialecte of our tongue for Capaneus. Besides chaucer is
in this to be p{ar}doned, in that taking his knightes tale out
of the Thesayde of Bocas, written in Italiane (and of late
translated into frenche,) doth there, after the Italiane manner,
call him campaneus; for so the Italians pronounce woordes
beginninge with cap: with the interposit{i}one of the l{ette}re
m, pronouncinge yt camp: for, that w{hi}che the Latins call
capitoliu{m}, the Italians call campidoglio; and suche lyke.
Wherefore since yt was vniversallye receued in that age, to call
him Campaneus: lett vs not nowe alter yt, but p{er}mytte yt to
have free passage accordinge to the pronuntiat{i}one and
wrytinge of that age. since, in deducinge woordes from one
language to one other, there ys often additione and
substract{i}one of letters, or of Sillabes, before, in the
middle, and in the ende of those wordes. whereof infynyte
examples mighte be produced, whiche I nowe shonne for brevytye.

[Sidenote: Liketh the reading of Eros, but preferreth that of
Heros, and giveth reasons.] Fo: 3. pa: 2. (“Noughte comelye lyke
to lovers maladye of Hereos.”) for whiche woorde hereos you
reade eros, i. cupide, a very good and probable correct{i}one,
well gathered out of Luciane. But (salua patient{i}a vestra,
and reservinge to myselfe better iudgmente hereafter yf I nowe
mystake yt,) I wolde, for the printed hereos of Chaucer, read
heroes. whiche two woordes onlye differ in misplacinge of the
letters; a comone thinge for the printer to do, and the
corrector to overpasse. for Arcyte, in this furye of his love,
did not shewe those courses of gouer[n]mente, whiche the Heroes,
or valiante p{er}sons, in tymes past vsed, for thoughe they
loued, yet that passione did not generallye so farre overrule
them (althoughe yt mighte in some one p{ar}ticuler personne) as
that theye lefte to contynewe the valor, and heroicke actions,
whiche they before performed. for the Heroes sholde so love, as
that they sholde not forgett, what they were in place, valor, or
magnanymytye, whiche Arcite, in this pass{i}one, did not observe
“lyke to lovers malady of Heroes.” Whereof I coulde produce six
hundred examples, (as the proverbe ys,) were yt not that I
avoyde tedious prolixytye.

[Sidenote: Of florins and their name from the Florentines.]
Fo: 6. pa: 2. (“Manye a florence.”) In whiche noote yo{u} expounde
a florence to be ij^s frenche, and a gelder to be the same in
dutche. Wherein yo{u} mistake the valewe of the florens, suche
as was vsed in Chaucers tyme, w{hic}he taking his name of the
woorkemenne, beinge florentynes, (of the terrytorye of florence
in Italye,) were called Florens; [Sidenote: Sterling money
taketh its name from the Esterlings.] as sterlinge money tooke
their name of Esterlinges, whiche refyned and coyned the silver
in the tyme of kinge Henry the seconde. for two shillinges
frenche ys not equall in valewe (as I nowe take yt) to two
shillinges Englishe: and much lesse equall to the florens in
Chaucers tyme, whiche was of the valewe of thre shillings, fowre
pence, or halfe a noble, or, at the leaste, of two shillinges
tenne pence farthinge, as apperethe by recorde and historye:
some of them being called florens de scuto or of the valewe of
the shelde or frenche crowne and some of them called florens
regall. Whereof yo{u} shall fynde, in the recorde of pellis
exitus in the exchequer in michelmas terme 41. Ed. 3. this note.
Bartholomeo de Burgershe militi in denariis sibi liberatis in
parte solutionis 8000 florenoru{m} de scuto pretii petii iij^s.
iiij^d. sibi debitis de illis 30000 florenoru{m} de scuto in
quibus Rex tenebatur eidem Bartholomeo pro comite de Ventadoure,
prisonario suo apud Bellu{m} de Poyters in guerra capto, et ab
eodem Bartholomeo ad opus Regis empt{o}, vt patet per litteras
Regis patentes, quas idem Bartholomeus inde penes se habet. in
Dors. de summa subscripta, per bre{ve} de magno sigillo, inter
mandata de Term. Michaelis de anno 36 --xx^li. To the valewe
whereof agreeth Hipodigma Neustriæ, pa. 127, [Sidenote: King
John of France, his ransom of three millions of florens.] where
setting downe the ransome of the frenche kinge taken at Poyters
to the valewe of thre milliones of florens, he sayethe “of
w{hic}he florens duo valebant vj^s. viij^d.” These florens the
same Walsingha{m} in another place callethe scutes or frenche
crownes, pa. 170, sayinge: Rex quidem Franciæ pro sua
redemptione soluit regi Angliæ tres milliones scutoru{m},
quoru{m} duo valent vnu{m} nobile, videlicet, sex solidos et
octo denarios. Whiche scutes in lyke manner, in the tyme of
kinge Henry the sixte were of the same valewe, as apperethe in
Fortescues commentaries of the lawes of Englande. But as those
florens for the redempt{i}one of the frenche kinge, were of the
valewe of half one noble: so at the tyme of that kings reigne
there were also one other sorte of florens, not of lyke valewe,
but conteyned within the price of ij^s. x^d. [QR]. called
florene regales, as apperethe in this record, of Easter terme,
of Pellis exitus before sayed, where yt is thus entred one the
sixte of Julye: Guiscardo de Angles. Domino de pleyne martyne,
In denariis sibi liberatis per manus Walteri Hewett militis in
pretio 4000 florenoru{m} regaliu{m} pretii petii --ij^s. x^d.
[QR] de quibus florenis regal{ibus} 7 computantur pro tribus
nobilibus, eidem Guiscardo debitis. Whereby yo{u} see the
meanest of these florens did exceed the valewe of ij^s. frenche,
(although you sholde equall that with ii^s. Englishe,) as yt did
also in other countryes. for in the lowe countryes at those
dayes yt was much aboute the valewe of iij^s. iiij^d. beinge
halfe a pistolet Italiane or Spanyshe. for so sayethe Heuterius
Delphicus, (in the Historye of Burgundye, in the lyfe of
Philippe le hardye,) lyving at that tyme, and sonne to the
frenche kinge taken prisoner by the Inglishe. Heuterius’ woordes
be these. Illustris viri aliorumq{ue} nobiliu{m} mors adeò
comite{m} com{m}ovit, vt relicta obsidione exercitus ad
co{m}meatus ducendos in proxima loca distribuerit. Decem
millibus florenorum (moneta Belgica est semipistoletu{m}
Italicu{m} pendens) pro Anglicani, aliorumq{ue} nobiliu{m}
cadaverum redemptione solutis, &c.

[Sidenote: Of the oken garland of Emelye.] Fo: 7. pa: 2. For
unseriall yo{u} will vs to reade cerriall, for cerrus[8] is a
kynde of tree lyke one oke, bearinge maste; and therefore by
yo{ur} correct{i}one yt sholde be a garland of grene oke
cerriall: But for the same reasone (because cerrus ys a kynde of
oke as ys also the Ilex) I judge yt sholde not be redde cerriall
but unseriall, that ys, (yf you will nedes have this worde
cerriall,) a garlande of greene oke not cerriall, as who sholde
saye, she had a Garlande of Grene oke, but not of the oke
Cerriall. and therefore a garlande of oke unseriall, signifyinge
a garlande that was freshe and Grene, and not of dedd wannyshe
Coolor as the oke Cerriall in some parte ys. for the Cerrus,
being the tree w{hi}che we comonly call the holme oke,
(as Cooper also expoundeth the ilex to be that which wee call
holme,) produceth two kyndes; whereof the one hathe greater, and
the other lesser acornes, whose leaves beinge somewhat grene one
the one syde, and of one ouer russett and darkyshe Coolor on the
other syde, were not mete for this garland of Emelye, whiche
sholde be freshe and Grene one everye parte, as were her younge
and grene yeres, lyke to the goddesse to whome she sacryfyced,
and therefore a garlande of Grene oke unseriall, not beinge of
oke cerriall, for yf yt had byn oke serriall, yt wolde haue
shewed duskyshe and as yt were of dedishe leaves, and not freshe
and orient as chaucer wolde haue her garlande. And this for
yo{u}r e[x]posit{i}one of unseriall, in some parte: for I wolde
suppose that this worde unseriall dothe not vnaptly signifye
perfectione of coolor, so that She having a Garlande of Grene
oke unseriall, doth signyfye the oke to be grene and unseriall,
that is, (as some do expounde this worde unseriall,) unsered,
unsinged, unwithered, of freshe coolor, lyke unto the oke
Quercus whiche hath no sered nor withered cooloor in his leafes.
And yt was of necessytye that Emely (sacryfysinge to Diana) must
haue a garlande of the Grene oke Quercus, because that they
whiche sacryfyced vnto Diana, otherwise called Hecate, (which
name is attribute to Diana, as natalis Comes affirmethe with
statius in his Acheleidos in his first Booke sayinge,

  Sic vbi virgineis Hecate lassata pharetris,

being Diana adorned with her bowe and arrowes, called also
Triuia because Luna, Diana, and Heccate, were all one, whereof
Virgil speaketh,

  Tergemina{m}q{ue} Hecaten, tria virginis ora Dianæ,)

were adorned w{i}th a crowne of the grene oke Quercus, because
that Heccate was wont to be crowned therewith, as hath Pierius
Valerianus in his 51 booke of Hieroglyphes, sayinge, Heccate
quoquè Quercu coronari solita est. for although Quercus be
consecrate to Jupiter, because he gave his oracles in the same
in Sylva Dodonea, and therefore called Jupiter Dodoneus; yet
Antiqutye adorned and crowned Diana Heccate with the same crowne
also. Wherefore I conclude, since she (Emelye) had a garlande of
Grene oke, (as Chaucer of purpose addeth that woorde Greene to
explane unseriall, whiche signyfyethe unsered, unparched,
unwithered in every parte, not lyke to the oke Serriall, whose
leafe one the one syde is duskyshe as though yt were somewhat
withered,) that the same word unseriall must stand unamended,
as well (as I sayed before) by youre owne correct{i}one and the
nature of the worde; as for that Diana, called Heccate, was
crowned with the oke Quercus and not with the oke cerrus. But yf
yo{u} obiecte to mee that, in this place, yt must be a garlande
of oke cerriall accordinge to the woordes of Chaucer in one
other place, because that he in the flower and the leafe (newely
printed by yo{u}) hath these woordes;

  I sie come first all in theire clokes white
  a companye that were for delight.
  Chapletts freshe of oke serriall
  Newly spronge and Trompetts they were all;

I denye that therefore in the Knightes Tale yt must be oke
serriall. for yt may well bee, that such meane persons as
trompettes might be crowned with so base one oke as the serriall
ys, whiche I call base in respecte of the oke Quercus (dedicate
to the godd Jupiter) wherewithe Heccate was crowned, and whereof
Garlands were gyven to the Romans for their nooble desarts in
the warres, as apperethe in the Quernall crowne gyven to those
whiche had saved a cytyzen. Wherefore Chaucer dothe rightly (and
of purpose with great iudgm{en}t in my conceyte) make a
difference in the chaplettes of the Trompettes and the garlands
of Emelye, in that the trompetts chapletts were of oke seriall
newly spronge; and not come to perfect{i}one, whiche yet yf they
had byn p{er}fecte wolde not haue byn soo oryente and Greene one
bothe sydes as ys the oke Quercus, wherewithe he wolde haue this
Emelye crowned, as was her goddesse Heccate Diana (to whom she
dyd sacryfyce) accustomed to bee. for so in tymes past (as I
sayed before) the sacryfycer sholde be adorned with garlandes of
suche thinges, as were consecrate to the goddes to whome they
sacryfyced. for whiche cause also I ame not moved, thoughe
Caxtone in his seconde editione do call yt one oke serriall. for
I knowe (not withstandinge his fayre prologe of printing that by
a true copye) there be manye imperfections in that Booke.

    [Footnote 8: _The Quercus cerris, the mossy cupped oak?_]

[Sidenote: Eyther for euerye, an overnice correction.] Fo: 9.
pa: 1. For euerye) yo{u} will us to reade eyther. But the sence
ys good, as well that they dyd ryde one euerye syde of hym, as
of eyther syde of him. for they boothe colde not ryde of euerye
syde of hym, no moore then they both colde ryde of eyther syde
of him; and therefore they two ryding one euerye side of hym,
canne haue noone other construct{i}one then that the one did
ryde of the one syde and the other one the other side, aud
therefore an ouer nice correct{i}one, thoughe some coppies do
warrant yt:

[Sidenote: The intellect of Arcite had not wholly gone, or he
would not have known Emelye.] Fo: 10. pa: 1. for save only the
intellecte,) yo{u} wolde haue us to reade “and also the
intellecte.” But yf yo{u} well consider the woordes of Chaucer,
(as I have donne in all the written copyes whiche I haue yet
seene,) his meaninge ys not that the intellecte was wholye
goonne, as yt wolde bee yf yo{u} sholde reade, “and also the
intellecte” for “save only the intellecte.” for Chaucers
meanynge ys, that all his streng[t]he and vitall Sprites aboute
his outewarde partes were gonne, save onlye the intellecte or
vnderstandinge, w{hi}che remayned sounde and good, as apperethe
after by the followinge woordes, for when deathe approched, and
that all outwarde senses fayled, he (Arcite) yet cast eye vppon
Emelye, remembringe her, thoughe the cheifest vitall sprite of
his harte and his streng[th]e were gonne from hym. but he colde
not haue cast his eye vppon Emelye, yf his intellecte had fayled
hym. Yet yf you liste to reade, “and also the intellecte,” for
saue only the intellecte, yt may after a sorte somewhat be borne
withall, notwithstandinge that a pointe at streng[t]he is
looste; and a parenthesis includynge (Save only the intellecte,
without moore,) will make the sence good in this sort as I have
here pointed yt:

  And yet moore ouer from his armes two
  the vital streng[t]he is lost; and all agoo
  (save only the intellecte without moore)
  that dwelleth in his hart sicke and sore
  gan faylen: When the hart felt death &c.

[Sidenote: Straught, a better word than haughte.] Fo: 10. pa: 2.
For armes straughte you wolde reade yt haughte, when straughte
is moore significa{n}t (and moore answerable to Chaucers woordes
whiche followethe) than haughte ys. for he speakethe of the
Bredthe and spredinge of the boughes or armes or branches of the
tree, whiche this woorde straughte doth signyfye, and is moore
aptlye sett downe for stretched, then this woorde haughte,
whiche signyfyethe catchinge holde, or holdinge faste, or (yf
you will streyne yt againste his nature) stretching on heigh,
whiche agreethe not well with Chaucers meanynge. for these be
his words:

  And twenty fadome of breedth, armes straughte;
  That is to sayen, the Bowes were so broode, &c.

[Sidenote: Visage for vassalage, an impertinent correction.]
Fo: 11. pa: 1. For all forgotten in his vassalage, yow wolde haue
vs reade, “for all forgotten is then his visage;” a thinge mere
impertinente. for the forgettinge of his visage and personage is
not materiall, nor regarded of anye to haue his face forgotten,
but yt is muche materiall (and so ys Chaucers meanynge) that his
vassalage, and the good service donne in his youthe, shold be
forgotten when he waxethe olde. And therefore yt must bee “his
vassalage forgotten;” as presently after Chaucer sayeth, better
for a manne to dye when he is yonge, and his honor in price,
than when he is olde, and the service of his youthe forgotten;
w{hic}he I coulde dilate and prove by manye examples; but I
cannott stande longe vppon euerye pointe, as well for that I
wolde not be tedious vnto yo{u}, as for that leysure serveth me
not thereunto.

[Sidenote: Leefe for lothe, a nedeless correction.] Fo: 13.
pa: 1. For lothe yo{u} bidde vs reade leefe, which annotacione
neded not to haue byn there sett downe, because the verye woorde
in the texte is lefe.

[Sidenote: It is more likely that Absolon knocked than that he
coughed at the window.] Fo: 14. pa: 1. for knocked yo{u} reade
coughed, but, the circumstance considered, (althoughe they may
both stande,) yt is moore probable that he[9] knocked at her[10]
windowe, than that he coughed. for although those woordes “with
a semely sownde” may haue relatione to the voyce, yet they may
as well and with as much consonancye haue reference to a semely
and gentle kynde of knockinge at the windowe as to the voyce,
and so his meanynge was by that sounde to wake her, whiche wolde
rather be by the noyse of a knocke than of a coughe. for so he
determyned before to knocke, as apperethe in these verses, when
he sayed,

  So mote I thryve, I shall at cockes crow
  Full priuily knocke at his windowe:

And so apperethe by the tale afterwarde that he knocked, as he
did before, although he coughed also at the latter tyme, for he
knocked twyce.

    [Footnote 9: [_Absolon._]]

    [Footnote 10: [_The Carpenter’s wife’s._]]

[Sidenote: Surrye or Russye, indifferent which.] Fo: 23. pa: 2.
For Surrye you read Russye. true yt is, that some written copies
haue Russye, and some Surrye. And therefore indifferent after
the written copies, and some auncient printed copies before my
fathers editione. But yf I shall interpone my opynione, I wolde
more willingly (for this tyme) receve Surrey, because yt is most
lykelye that the tartarians whiche dwelt at Sara (a place yet
well knowen, and bordering vppon the lake Mare Casp{iu}m,) are
nerer to Sorria or the countryes adioynynge called Syria, than
to Russya. For as Hato the Armeniane, in his Tartariane
Historye, sayeth, The cyttye of Sara was auncyently the famous
cyttye of the countrye of Cumania; and the Tartarians obteyned
the kingdome of Syria in the yere 1240, w{hi}che must be in the
tyme of the fyrst Tartariane emperor called Caius canne,
[Sidenote: Cambuscan is Caius canne.] beinge (as I suppose) he
whome Chaucer namethe Cambiuscan, for so ys the written copies,
such affynytye is there betwene those two names. And, as I
gather, yt was after that tyme that the Tartarians had warres in
Russia. But I leave yt indifferent at this tyme, as meanynge
further to consider of yt.

[Sidenote: “That may not saye naye,” better than “there may no
wighte say naye.”] Fo: 31. pa: 2. for these woordes, “that may
not saye naye,” yo{u} reade “there may no wighte say naye.”
bothe whiche are good, and boothe founde in written coppyes; and
yet the firste will better stande, in my conceyte, because [_the
king of Faerie_] there speakinge to his wyfe, he urgethe her
that she cannott denye yt; when he sayeth, my wyfe that cannott
say naye, as who sholde saye yo{u} cannot denye yt because you
knowe yt; and experience teacheth yt, so that these woordes,
“that cannott say naye,” must be taken as spoken of his wyfes
knowledge, and so as good or rather better than “there may no
wighte saye naye,” consideringe that these wordes “that cannott
saye naye,” dothe signyfye, “whoe cannott saye naye,” in such
sorte that this relatyve (that) meanynge (whoe) must haue
reference to his antecedente, i. e. this worde wyfe.

[Sidenote: Theophraste, not Paraphraste.] Fo: 35. pa: 2. For “He
cleped yt valerye and theophraste,” you saye some wolde haue vs
reade “Valery and his Paraphraste.” But as yo{u} haue left yt at
libertee to the reader to iudge, so I thinke yt must nedes be
Theophraste; as the author [of] Policraticon in his eighte
Booke, ca. 11. [Sidenote: The wife of Bath’s Prologue taken from
the author of Policraticon.] (from whome Chaucer borrowethe
almost worde for worde a great parte of the Wyfe of Bathes
Prologe,) doth vouche yt, for the author of that booke, Johannes
Sarisburiensis, lyvinge in the tyme of Henrye the seconde,
sayethe, Fertur authore Hieronimo Aureolus Theophrasti liber, de
nuptiis, in quo quæritur an vir sapiens ducat vxorem, etc. And
the frenche molinet, moralizinge the Romant of the roose in
frenche, and turnynge it oute of verse into proese, writeth,
Ha si i’eusse creu Theophraste, &c. Oh, yf I had beleved
Theophraste, I had never maried womanne, for he doth not holde
hym wise that marieth anye womanne, be she fayre, foule, poore,
or riche; as he sayeth in his Booke Aureolle; whiche verye
wordes chaucer doth recyte.

[Sidenote: Country, not Couentry.] Fo: 38. pa: 2. for this worde
Countrye you will vs to reade Couentrye. But in my writtene
copies yt is, “in my Countrye,” whiche I holde the truer and for
the sence as good yf not better.

[Sidenote: Maketh, not waketh.] Fo: 41. pa: 1. This woorde
makethe is corrected by you, who for the same do place wakethe;
w{hi}che cannott well stande, for Chaucers woordes being, “this
maketh the fende,” dothe signyfye (by a true conuers{i}one after
the dialecte of our tonge, w{hi}che with beawtye vsethe suche
transmutac{i}one as I coulde gyve yo{u} manye pretye instances,)
that the sence thereof ys, “the fende makethe this,” for whiche
Chaucer vseth these wordes by Transposit{i}one, (accordinge to
the rhethoricall figure Hiperbatone) “This makethe the fende:”
Whiche this? Anger: for that comethe, ys made, or occasioned,
by the deuell. But yf yt sholde be wakethe, then must the sence
bee, that this (whiche is the anger he speakethe of before)
wakethe the fende; whiche oure offences cannot do, because he
cannott be waked, in that he neyther slumbrethe nor slepethe,
but alwayes watcheth and howrely seekethe occas{i}one to
destroye us, lyke a roringe lyone. But yf you will nedes saye
“this wakethe the fende,” that is, by conuersione after this
manner, “the fende waketh this,” whiche signyfyeth the fende
waketh or styrreth this in manne, yt may, after a harde and
over-streyned sorte, beare some sence, whiche yet hath not that
energye, sprite or lyfe, w{hi}che haue Chaucers woordes, “this
maketh the fende.” Whiche woordes are in my written copies, and
in all written and auncient printed copies whiche I have yet

[Sidenote: Hugh of Lincoln.] Fo: 96. pa: 2. vppon these woordes,
“O hughe of Lincolne sleyne also, &c.” You saye, that in the 29.
H. 3. eightene Jewes were broughte fro{m} Lincolne, and hanged
for crucyfyinge a childe of eight yeres olde. Whiche facte was
[in] the 39. H. 3. so that yo{u} mighte verye well haue sayed,
that the same childe of eighte yeres olde was the same hughe of
Lincolne; of whiche name there were twoe, viz. thys younger
Seinte Hughe, and Seinte Hughe bishoppe of Lincolne, whiche dyed
in the yere 1200, long before this litle seinte hughe. And to
prove [that] this childe of eighte yeres olde and that yonge
hughe of Lincolne were but one; I will sett downe two
auctoryties out of Mathewe Paris and Walsinghame, whereof the
fyrste wryteth, that in the yere of Christe 1255, beinge the 39.
of Henrye the 3, a childe called Hughe was sleyne by the Jewes
at Lyncolne, whose lamentable historye he delyvereth at large;
and further, in the yere 1256, being 40. Hen. 3, he sayeth,
Dimissi sunt quieti 24 Judei à Turri London, qui ibidem infames
tenebantur compediti pro crucifixione sancti Hugonis Lincolniæ:
All whiche Thomas Walsingham, in Hypodigma Neustriæ, confirmeth;
sayinge, A^o. 1255. Puer quidam Christianus, nomine HUGO, à
Judeis captus, in opprobriu{m} Christiani nominis crudelitèr est

[Sidenote: “Where the sunne is in his ascensione,” a good
reading.] Fo: 86. pa: 8. (Where the sunne is in his
ascensione, &c.) You will us to reade for the same,

  Ware the soone in his ascensione
  Ne fynde you not replete of humors hotte,
  For yf yt doe, &c.

But, savinge correct{i}one, the former sence is good: for these
woordes: Where the sonne is in his ascensione, must haue
relat{i}one to the woordes of the verse before,

  Ye be righte colericke of complex{i}one,

and then is the sence, that she [_the fair Pertelote_] willed
hym to purge, for that he was righte (that is, extremelye and in
the highest degree) collericke of complex{i}one, where (whiche
signyfyeth when) the sonne is in his ascent{i}one. Wherefore he
must take heede, that he did not fynde hym repleate (at that
tyme of the sonnes being in his ascent{i}one) of hoote humors,
for yf he did, he sholde surelye haue one ague. And this will
stand with the woordes Where the sonne is in his ascentione,
taking where for when, as yt is often vsed. But yf yo{u} mislyke
that gloosse, and will begyn one new sence, as yt is in some
written copyes, and saye, Ware the sonne in his ascentione ne
fynde you not repleate, &c. yet yt cannott bee that the other
wordes, (for yf yt doo,) canne answer the same, because this
pronoune relative (yt) cannot haue relat{i}one to this worde
(you) which wente before in this lyne, Ne fynde yo{u} not
repleate of humors hotte. So that yf you nowe will nedes reade
ware for where, yet the other parte of the followinge verse must
nedes be, “for yf you doe,” and not “for yf yt dooe;” vnleste
you will saye that this woorde (yt) must haue relat{i}one to
these woordes, (the sonne in his ascentione,) whiche yt cannott
have, those woordes goinge two lynes before, and the pronowne
(you) interposed betwene the same and that his correlative (yt.)
Wherefore these woordes, (for yf yt doe,) must nedes stande as
they did before, though you will correcte “Where the sonne &c.”
and saye “Ware the sonne &c.” W{hi}che yf you will nedes haue,
you must correcte the rest in this sorte:

  Ware the sonne in his ascentione
  that yt fynde you not repleat of humors hotte,
  for yf yt do, &c.

But this correct{i}one (savinge, as I sayed, correct{i}one)
semeth not so good as the former texte.

[Sidenote: Kenelm slain by Queen Drida.] Fol: 86. pa: 2. Vppon
these woordes, (Lo, in the lyfe of Kenelme we reade,) you saye
that Kenelme was sleyne by his sister Quenda, whiche sholde be
Quendrida; as Williame of Malmsberye and Ingulphus have. Whiche
Quendrida dothe signyfye Quene Drida; as the author of the
Antiquyties of Seint Albons and of the Abbottes thereof
(supposed to be Mathewe Paris) dothe expounde yt. for that
auctor, speakinge of the wyfe of Offa the greate kinge of
Mercia, (a wicked and proude womanne because she was of the
stocke of Charles the greate,) dothe saye, that she was called
Drida, and being the kings wyfe was termed Quendrida, id est,
Regina Drida.

[Sidenote: Master Speight mistaketh his almanack.] Fo: 87. p: 1.
Vppon these woordes of “Taurus was fortye degrees and one,” you
saye that this place ys misprinted, as well in not namynge of
the sygne, as of the misreckonynge of the degrees, that the two
and twentye of Marche the sunne is in Aries, and that but eleven
degrees or thereaboutes, and hathe in all but thirtye degrees.
In whiche, in semynge to correcte the former printe (whiche in
truthe deseruethe amendement, but not in that order,) you seme
to mee to erre, as farre as heauen and yerthe, in mistakinge
Chaucers meanynge and his woordes, as well for the daye of the
monthe, as for the signe. for where yo{u} suppose that Chaucere
meanethe the two and twentithe daye of Marche, you mistake yt.
for although yt should be the 22 of the monthe, as the printed
booke hathe; yet canne yt not be the 22 daye of Marche, but must
of necessytye be the two and twentythe of Aprille: and so the
signe Taurus trulye named. But first I must saye, the number of
the dayes are misprinted, for where yt is twentye dayes and two,
yt must be (and so are my written copies) thirtye dayes and two,
whiche must be the seconde of Maye, as yo{u} shall well see by
the woordes of Chaucer, for whether yowe recken thirtye two
dayes, withe the truthe, as hathe the written copye, or xxii
dayes, withe the printe: yet must yo{u} begynne to recken them
from after the last of Marche. for so dothe Chaucer, sayinge
Marche was compleate, in these woordes:

  When the month in whiche the worlde began,
  That hight Marche, when God first made man,
  Was complete, and passed were also
  Since Marche byganne, &c.

Wherebye yo{u} see, that yo{u} must begynne to recken the nomber
of dayes from the tyme of marche complete; and then woulde the
signe fall out to be in Taurus. Yf yo{u} holde yo{u} to the
printe (for the 22 daye after Marche, which is the 22 daye of
Aprill in which the sonne is aboute xi degrees in Taurus;) or to
the written copye of thirtye two dayes, (w{hi}che is the seconde
of maye at what tyme the sonne ys also aboute some xxi degrees
in Taurus;) the signe is not misreckoned or misnamed, as yo{u}
suppose. nether canne these woordes, since Marche beganne, helpe
you to recken them from the begynnynge of Marche, (as you seme
to doo;) because they muste answere and be agreable to the
former wordes of Chaucer, w{hi}che sayethe M{ar}che was
complete, and, for that we shoulde not dobte thereof, he addethe
also farther, And passed were also since Marche beganne; where
the worde beganne ys mysprinted for be gonne, that is, since
marche be gonne, this word begonne being put for is gonne, or
gonne bye, or departed. so that the genuyniell sence hereof is,
When march was complete, and also were passed, since march is
gonne, or gonne by, or departed. for, in many olde inglishe
woordes, this syllable (be) is sett before to make yt moore
signyficante and of force, as for moone we saye bemone, for
sprincled, besprincled; for dewed, bedewed, &c. as in this case
for gonne ys sett downe begonne. But although there be no
misnaminge of the [Sidenote: The degrees of the signe are
misreckoned, not the signe itself.] signe; yet yt is true the
degrees of the signes are misreckoned, the error whereof grewe,
because the degree of the signe, is made equall with the degree
of the sonne ascended above the Horizon, beinge at that tyme xli
degrees in heighte from the Horizon. But to remedye all this,
and to correcte yt accordinge as Chaucer sett yt downe in myne
and other written copies; and that yt may stande w{i}th all
mathematicall proport{i}one, whiche Chaucer knewe and observed
there, the print must be corrected after those written copies
(whiche I yet holde for sounde till I maye disprove them) having
these woordes:

  when that the month in whiche the worlde beganne,
  that hight Marche, when god first made manne,
  was complete, and passed were also
  since marche begonne thirty dayes and two:
  befell that Chanteclere in all his pride,
  his seven wives walkinge him beside,
  cast vp his eyen to the bright sonne,
  that in the signe of Taurus had yronne
  Twentye degrees and one and somewhat moore;
  And knewe by kynde and by noone other loore
  That yt was pryme, and crewe with blisful steven:
  The sunne, quoth he, is clomben vp on heaven
  Fortye degrees and one, and moore, ywis, &c.

And that this shoulde be mente xxxij dayes after Marche, and the
seconde of Maye, there be manye reasons, besides those that
Chaucer nameth; which are, that the sonne was not farre from the
middle of his ascent{i}one, and in the signe Taurus. ffurther,
since I am now in Chantecler’s discourse, I must speake of one
woorde in the same, deservinge correct{i}one, w{hi}che I see you
overslipped; and because I thinke yo{u} knewe not what to make
of yt, (as in dede by the printinge few menne canne
vnderstande yt,) I will sett downe the correct{i}one of the
same; [Sidenote: Mereturicke is a corruption of Merecenrycke,
or the kingdom of Mercia.] being the worde Mereturicke, farr
corrupted for Mercenricke, in saxon Meþecenþÿke which is the
kingdome of Mercia, for so was Kenelme the sonne, and Kenulphus
the father, both kinges of Mercia; the one reignynge 36 yeres,
and the other murdred by his sister Quendrida, as ys before
noted. And that yt is the kingdome of Mercia, the etymon of the
woorde doth teache; for þÿk in the saxon tonge signyfyethe a
kingdome; meþcen signyfyethe markes or boundes or marches of
Countryes. So that Mercenricke is regnu{m} Merciæ, or the
kingdome of Mercia, or of the boundes so called, because almost
all the other kingdoms of the saxons bounded vppon the same, and
that lykewise vppon them, since that kingdome did lye in the
middle of England, and conteyned most of the shires thereof.

[Sidenote: Pilloures of silver borne before Cardinalls.] Fo: 90.
pa: 2. for pilloure you will vs to reade Pellure, signifyinge
furres. but althoughe the Clergye ware furres, and some of them
had their outwarde ornamentes thereof when they came to their
service, as the Chanons had their Grey amises; yet in this
place, to shewe the proude and stately ensignes of the Clergye,
he there nameth the popes crowne, and the Cardinalls pilloures,
yf I be not deceved. for euery cardinall had, for parte of his
honorable ensignes borne before hym, certein silver pillers; as
had Cardinall Wolsey, in the tyme of kinge Henrye the eighte,
and Cardinall Poole, in my memory. So that pilloure in that
place is better than pellure, because pilloures were a note of
more pride and maiestye (againste whiche the Plowmanne dothe
enveye in those woordes,) than in the weringe of furres.

[Sidenote: Liketh best the old reading of “change of many manner
of meates.”] Fo: 90. pa: 2. for these wordes, with change of
many manner of meates, yo{u} wolde have vs reade, They eate of
many manner of meates. Touchinge whiche, althoughe the sence
stande well, yet sure Chaucer followeth this matter in many
staues together with this preposit{i}one (cu{m}, with,) and this
coniunctione (et, and;)--as, “With pride misledd the poore, and
with money filled manye a male, &c.” so he contynuethe yt still
with that prepositione, “with change of many meates;” w{hi}che
is as good as the other, for euery one knoweth Chaucers meanynge
to be that they eate of many meates, when they haue change of
many meates; for why sholde they haue change of meates, but for
varyetye to please the palates taste in eatynge. [Sidenote: And
also the old reading of “myters” more than one or two for the
sake of the meter.] In the next staffe, (for myters moe then one
or two) you teache vs to reade, “myters they weare mo then one
or two;” whiche, me thinkethe, nedeth not. For the wearinge of
their myters is included in these woordes, And myters more then
one or two. W{hi}che wordes are curteyled for the verse his
cause, that the same mighte kepe an equall proport{i}one and
decorum in the verse, whiche would be lengthened one foote or
sillable moore than the other verses, yf your readinge shoulde
stande. But yf yo{u} saye, that in this and other thinges I am
overstreyghte laced and to obstinatlye bente to defende the
former printed editione, in that I woulde rather allowe one
imperfecte sence, and suche as must be vnderstoode, when yt ys
not fully expressed, than a playne style, I will answere withe a
grounde of the lawe, quod frustra fit per plura quod fieri
potest per pauciora, and quod subintelligitur non deest.
Wherefore yt is nedelesse to make that playner by addit{i}one of
woordes, when yt maye be as well conceyved in any reasonable
mens vnderstandinge without such addit{i}one. But on these and
suche petit matters, I will not nowe longe insiste, (being
things of no greate momente,) vntill I haue further examyned
more written copyes to trye, whether wee shall reade the olde
texte or your newe correctione.

[Sidenote: The lordes sonne of Windsore is in the French Romant
of the rose, but is there spelled Guindesores.] Fo: 122. pa: 2.
The lordes sonne of Windsore.) Vppon these woordes you saye,
this maye seme strange bothe in respecte that yt is not in the
frenche, as also for that there was no lorde Windsore at those
dayes. But yt semeth to me moore strange that these woordes
shoulde seme strange to yo{u}, not to bee in the frenche, where
yo{u} shall fynde them. For thus hathe the frenche written
Romante, as maye appere in the old frenche vsed at the tyme when
the Romante was composed, in this sorte:

  Pris a Franchise lez alez
  Ne sai coment est apelles,
  Biaus est et genz, se il fust ores
  Fuiz au seign{eur} de Guindesores:

Whiche is thus englished: Next to Franchise went a young
bacheler, I knowe not howe he was called, he was fayre and
gentle, as yf he had byn sonne to the lorde of Windsore. Where
in olde frenche this word fuiz (vsed here as in manye places of
that Booke) is placed for that whiche we wryte and pronounce at
this daye for filz or fitz, in Englishe sonne. and that it is
here so mente, you shall see in the Romante of the Roose turned
into proese, moralized, by the french Molinet, and printed at
Paris in the yere 1521, who hathe the same verses in these
woordes in proese. A Franchise s’estoit prins vn ieune Bacheler
de qui ne scay le nome, fors bell, en son temps filz du
seigneure de Guindesore. Whiche yo{u} mighte have well seene,
had you but remembered their orthographie, and that the latyne,
Italiane, frenche, and spanyshe have no doble w, as the Dutche,
the Englishe, and such as haue affynytye with the Dutche, since
they vse for doble w (a letter comone to vs) these two letters
Gu, as in Gulielmus, which we wryte Willielmus; in guerra, which
we call and writte warre, in Gualterus, which we write Walter;
in guardeine, which we pronounce and write wardeyne; and suche
lyke; accordinge to whiche in the frenche yt is Guindesore for
Windesore. [Sidenote: Master Thynne knoweth not clearly why the
Baron should be called of Windsor.] for your other coniectures,
whye that Chaucer sholde inserte the loordes sonne of Windesore,
they are of [{no}?] great momente, neque adhuc constat that
Chaucer translated the Romante, whene Windsore Castle was in
buildinge. for then I suppose that Chaucer was but yonge;
whereof I will not stande at this tyme, no moore than I will
that there was no lord Windsore in those dayes; althoughe I
suppose that sir William Windsore, being then a worthye knighte
and of great auctorytye in Englande and in the partes beyond the
seas under the kinge of Englande, mighte be lord Windsore, of
whom the Frenche tooke notice, being in those partes, and by
them called seigneure de Windesore, as euery gouerno{r} was
called seigneure emongst them. But whether he were a Baron or no
in Englande, I cannott yet saye, because I haue not my booke of
Somons of Barons to parliamente in my handes at this instante.

[Sidenote: The ordeal was not tryall by fier only, but also
by water, nor for chastity only, but for many other matters.]
Fo: 171. pa: 2. by ordall, &c. Vppone whiche yo{u} write thus.
“Ordalia is a tryall of chastytye, throughe the fyre, as did
Emma, mother of the Confessor, or ells over hoote burnynge
culters of yrone barefotte, as did Cunegunde, &c.” But in
this describinge definit{i}one, you have commytted manye
imp{er}fect{i}ons. first, that ordell was a tryall by fyre,
w{hi}che is but a species of the ordell; for ordaliu{m} was a
tryall by fyre and water: secondlye, that yt was a tryall of
Chastitye whiche was but parcell thereof; for the ordale was a
tryall for manye other matters. [Sidenote: The fyery ordeal was
by going on hote shares and cultors, not going through the fyre.
The mother of Edward confessor passed over nine burnynge
shares.] Thirdlye, yo{u} saye yt was by goinge throughe the
fyre. when the fyery ordale was onlye by goinge one hoote shares
or cultores, or by holdinge a hoote pece of yrone in the hande,
and not going through the fyre. fourthlye, that Emma, mother to
Edwarde the confessor, receued this tryall by goinge through the
fyre: But she passed not through the fyre as you bringe her for
one example of your ordale but passed barefotte vppone nyne
burnynge shares, fowr for her selfe, and fyve for Alwyne
Bishoppe of Winchester, with whome she was suspected with
incontynencye, whiche historye you maye see at large in
Ranulphus Higden, in his policronicone li: 6. ca: 23, and in
other auctors; of whiche ordale I colde make a longe and no
commone discourse; of the manner of consecrating the fyre and
water, how yt was vsed emongst the saxons before, and the
normans since, the Conqueste, and of many other thinges
belonging vnto yt. but I will passe them ouer, and only deliuer
to you a thinge knowen to fewe, [Sidenote: The ordeal taken away
by the court of Rome, and after by Henry III.] how this ordale
was contynued in Englande in the tyme of kinge Johne, as
appereth in Claus. 17. Johīs, m. 25, vntill yt was taken awaye
by the courte of Rome; and after that, in Englande, by the
auctorytye of kinge Henrye the thirde, whereof you shall fynde
this recorde in the towre Patente. 3. H. 3. mem. 5, where yt
speakethe of iudgmente and tryall by fyer and water to be
forbydden by the Churche of Roome, and that yt sholde not be
vsed here in Englande; as apperethe in the woordes of that
record: Illis vero qui mediis criminibus vectati sunt, et quibus
competeret iudiciu{m} ignis vel aquæ si non esset prohibitum, et
de quibus si regnum nostru{m} abiurarent, nulla fieret postea,
maleficiendi suspitio, regnu{m} nostru{m} abiurent &c.

[Sidenote: The stork bewrayeth not adultery but wreaketh the
adultery of his owne mate.] Fo: 246. pa: 1. speaking of the
storke, you saye that Chaucers woordes “wreaker of adulterye”
shoulde rather bee “bewrayer of Adulterye;” w{hi}che in truth
accordinge to one propryetye of his nature may be as you saye,
but according to another propryetye of his nature, yt sholde be
“the wreaker of Adulterye,” as Chaucer hathe; for he ys a
greater wreaker of the adulterye of his owne kynde and female
than the bewrayer of the adulterye of one other kynde, and of
his hostesse one the toppe of whose howse he harborethe. for
Aristotle sayeth Bartholomeus de proprietatibus reru{m} li: 12.
cap. 8. with many other auctors, that yf the storke by any
meanes perceve that his female hath brooked spousehedde, he will
no more dwell with her, but stryketh and so cruelly beateth her,
that he will not surcease vntill he hathe killed her yf he maye,
to wreake and revenge that adulterye.

These and suche lyke in my conceyte are worthye to be touched in
your Annotac{i}ons, besides other matters whiche you haue not
handled; whereof (because tyme requirethe after all this tedious
treatyce to drawe to one ende) I will not now treate; but onlye
speake a little moore of fyve especiall thinges, woorthye the
animadvers{i}one, of which the fyrste ys, [Sidenote: The
plowman’s tale is wrong placed.] that yo{u} make the Plowmans
tale to go next before the persons tale, suffering the persons
corrupted prologue to passe with this begynnynge, “By that the
plowmanne had his tale ended,” when all written copies, (whiche
I coulde yet see,) and my fathers editione, haue yt, “By that
the mancyple had his tale ended.” And because my father colde
not see by any Prologues of thee other tales, (whiche for the
most parte shewe the dependancye of one Tale vppone one other,)
where to place the plowmans tale, he putt yt after the persons
tale, whiche, by Chaucers owne woordes, was the laste tale; as
apperethe by the persons prologue, where the hooste sayethe,
that “euery manne had tolde his Tale before.” So that the
plowmans tale must be sett in some other place before the
manciple and persons tale, and not as yt ys in the last

[Sidenote: Chaucer’s proper works should be distinguished from
those adulterat and not his.] One other thinge ys, that yt would
be good that Chaucers proper woorkes were distinguyshed from the
adulterat and suche as were not his, as the Testamente of
Cressyde, the Letter of Cupide, and the ballade begynnynge
“I have a ladye where so she bee,” &c. whiche Chaucer never
composed, as may sufficientlye be proved by the things

[Sidenote: There were three editions of Chaucer before William
Thynne dedicated his to Henry VIII.] The thirde matter ys, that
in youre epistle dedicatorye to Sir Roberte Cecille, yo{u} saye,
“This Booke whene yt was first published in printe was dedicate
to kinge Henrye the eighte.” But that is not soo. for the firste
dedicatione to that kinge was by my father, when diverse of
Chaucers woorkes had byn thrise printed before; whereof two
editions were by Will{ia}m Caxtone, the firste printer of
Englande, who first printed Chaucers Tales in one columne in a
ragged letter, and after in one colume in a better order; and
the thirde edit{i}one was printed, as farre as I remember, by
Winkin de Worde or Richarde Pynson, the seconde and thirde
printers of Englande, as I take them.[11] [Sidenote: The first
editions being very corrupt, William Thynne augmented and
corrected them.] Whiche three edit[i]ons beinge verye unperfecte
and corrupte occasioned my father (for the love he oughte to
Chaucers learnynge) to seeke the augmente and correct{i}one of
Chaucers Woorkes, w{hi}che he happily fynyshed; the same being,
since that tyme, by often printinge much corrupted. of this
matter I sholde have spooken first of all, because yt is the
first imperfect{i}one of your paynfull and comendable labors:
Yet because the proverb ys better late than never, I hold yt
better to speake of yt here then not at all.

    [Footnote 11: _Caxton_, 1475-1481-2. _Wynkyn de Word_,

[Sidenote: Master Speight hath omytted many auctors vouched by
Chaucer.] The fourthe thinge ys, that, in the catalogue of the
auctors, you haue omytted many auctors vouched by chaucer; and
therefore did rightlye intitle yt, moost, and not all, of the
auctors cited by Geffrye Chaucer.

[Sidenote: It should be Harlottes, and not Haroldes.] The fyfte
matter ys in the Romante of the Roose, fo. 144, that the worde
Haroldes in this verse,

  My kinge of Haroltes shalte thou bee,

must, by a mathesis or transpositione of the letters, be
Harlotes, and not Haroltes, and the verse thus,

  My kinge of Harlottes shalt thou bee

And so ys yt in the edit{i}one of Chaucer’s Works, printed in
anno Domini 1542, accordinge to the frenche moralizatione of
Molinet, fo. 149. where he is called “Roye des Ribauldez,”
[Sidenote: The king of Ribalds or Harlottes, an officer of great
accompt in times past.] w{hi}che is, the kinge of Ribaldes or
Harlottes or evill or wicked persons; one officer of great
acco{m}pte in tymes paste, and yet vsed in the courte of France
but by one other name, in some parte beinge the office of the
marshall of Englande. All whiche, because yo{u} shall not thinke
I dreame, (though yt may seme strange to the ignorant to have so
greate one officer intituled of suche base p{er}sons as to be
called kinge or gouernor of Ribauldes,) [Sidenote: Johannes
Tyllius maketh mention of a Rex Ribaldorum.] yo{u} shall here
Joh{ann}es Tyllius (in his seconde booke de rebus Gallicis vnder
the title de Prefecto pretorio Regis) confirme in these woordes:
In domesticis regu{m} constitutionibus, quos proximo capite
nominavimus, fit mentio Regis Ribaldorum, officii domestici,
quem semper oportet stare extra Portam pretorii, &c. and a litle
after the explanynge of their office, he addeth; “sic autem
appellantur, quia iam tum homines perditi Ribaldi, et Ribaldæ
mulieres puellæq{ue} perditæ vocantur. Regis nomen superiori aut
Iudici tribuitur, Quemadmodu{m} magnus Cubicularius dicitur Rex
Mercatorum,” &c. Where he maketh the “Regem Ribaldoru{m}” an
honorable officer for manye causes, [Sidenote: Also Vincentius
Luparius maketh him an honourable officer.] as Vincentius
Luparius in his fyrste booke of the Magistrates of france doth
also, vnder the title of “Rex Ribaldoru{m} et prouostus
Hospitii;” makinge the Iudex pretorianus and this rex ribaldorum
or provostus hospitii to seme all one, addinge further (after
manye other honorable partes belonginge to this office) that
“meretricibus aulicis hospitia assignare solebat.” In whiche
pointe, bothe for orderinge and correctinge the harlottes and
evill persons followinge the Courte of Englande, (whiche is the
duty of the marshall,) the frenche and wee agree. [Sidenote: The
Rex Ribaldorum was like unto our Marshall. The Marshalls duties
and his powers over Harlotts and lost men.] Wherefor, touching
that parte, yo{u} shall heare somewhat of the Marshalls office
sett downe and founde in the Customes, whiche Thomas of
Brothertonne (sonne to kinge Edwarde the fyrste) challenged to
his office of Marshalcye; where, emongst other thinges, are
these woordes: eoru{m} (w{hi}che was of the marshalls deputyes
executinge that he shoulde ells do hym selfe) interest virgatam
à meretricibus prohibere, et deliberare, et habet, ex
consuetudine mariscallus ex quâlibet meretrice com[m]uni infra
metas hospitii inventa iiij^d. primo die. Quæ, si iteru{m}
inventa in Balliuâ suâ inveniatur, capiatur; et coram
seneschallo inhibea{n}tur ei hospitia Regis et Reginæ et
liberoru{m} suorum, ne iteru{m} ingrediatur, &c. And so
afterwarde shewethe what shall be done to those women, yf they
be founde agayne in the Kinges courte, in suche sorte, that, as
by Tillius, this Rex Ribaldorum his auctorytye was over homines
perditos, mulieres puellasq{ue} perditas. And that yt was, by
Lupanus, to assigne to Ribaldes lodginge out of the courte, (for
so modestye willeth vs to vnderstande, because they shoulde not
offende and infecte the courte with their sighte and manners,)
so ys yt our Marshalls office, to banyshe those harlottes the
courte, and bestowe them in some other place, where they might
be lesse annoyance. [Sidenote: Master Thynne being a herold
liketh not that false semblance should be thought one.]
Wherefore I conclude w{i}th the frenche, and the former
edit{i}one of Chaucer in the yere of Christe 1542, that False
Semblance was of righte to be made kinge of Harlottes, and not
of Haroldes, who wolde mightely be offended to haue them holden
of the conditions of false semblance. Nowe here be nugæ in the
Romante of the Roose, I cannott (as the proverb ys) take my hand
from the table, (fyndinge go manye oversightes in the two last
editiones,) but must speake of one thing more, deserving
correctione, in these woordes of the Romante, fo. 116 of the
last impress{i}one:

  Amide saw I hate stonde,
  That for wrathe and yre & onde
  Semed to be a minoresse;

[Sidenote: Hate was a Moueresse or stirrer of debate, not a
minoresse.] Where this woorde Minoresse shoulde be Moueresse,
signyfyinge a mover or styrrer to debate, for these be the
frenche verses in the oldest written copye that euer was (to be
founde in Englande, yf my coniecture fayle me not,) by the age
of the frenche wordes, which are these:

  Enz euz le milieu vi hayne,
  qui de courouz et datayn
  Sembla bien estre moueresse,
  et courouse et teucerresse.

Beinge thus englyshed, as of righte they oughte, accordinge to
the frenche:

  Amyde sawe I hate stonde,
  That of wrathe and yre & onde
  Semed well to be mooveresse,
  An angry wighte and chyderesse.

[Sidenote: Molinet calleth Hate a Ducteress, or leader.] Whiche
woord mooveresse the learned molinet, in his moralizat{i}one of
that Romant, dothe turne into Ducteresse, a leader or leadresse,
so that they agree yt shoulde not be a minoresse, but a
mooveresse or leadresse of and to anger and yre; anye of whose
woordes will as well and rather better fytt the sence and verse
of Chaucer, and better answere the Frenche originall and
meanynge, than the incerted woorde Minoresse.

Thus hooping that yo{u} will accepte in good and frendlye parte,
these my whatsoever conceytes vttered vnto you, (to the ende
Chawcers Woorkes by much conference and many iudgmentes mighte
at leng[t]he obteyne their true p{er}fect{i}one and glory, as I
truste they shall, yf yt please godde to lend me tyme and
leysure to reprinte, correcte, and comente the same after the
manner of the Italians who have largely comented Petrarche;)
I sett end to these matters; comyttinge yo{u} to god, and me to
your curtesye.

  Clerkenwell Greene,
  the xvi of december 1599.
  Your lovinge frende,


  Abandone, p. 33.
  Absalom, whether he coughed or knocked, p. 42.
  Aketon, a sleeveless jacket of plate for the war, p. 24.
  Arcite, his intellect, p. 40.
  Authentic, a thing of authority, p. 33.

  Bath, Wife of, her Prologue, p. 44.
  Begyns, superstitious women, p. 29.
  Besant, a coin of Bizantium, p. 25.
  Burgersh, Bartholomew de, sent into Henault for Philippa, p. 12.
  Burgo, Serlo de, built Knaresborough Castle, p. 18.

  Cambuscan, or Caius, Cause, p. 43.
  Campaneus, reading of, p. 34.
  Chaucer, MSS., collection made by William Thynne, p. 5.
  Chaucer, MSS., dispersed by his son, p. 8.
  Chaucer’s parentage, p. 9.
  Chaucer and the Franciscan friar, p. 16.
  Chaucer’s marriage, p. 17.
  Chaucer’s coat-of-arms, p. 10.
  Chaucer’s children, p. 17.
  Chaucer, his education, p. 13.
  Chaucer, his skyll in Geometrye, p. 11.
  Chaucer, his ancestors, whether merchants of the staple or no,
      pp. 12, 13.
  Chaucer, the stemme of, p. 17.
  Chaucer, his children and their advancement, p. 17.
  Chaucer, Thomas, married to Maude, daughter of Sir John Burgersh,
      p. 18.
  Chaucer, his dream, not the book of the Duchess, pp. 22, 23.
  Chaucer, early editions of, p. 56.
  Chausier, one who hoseth or booteth a man, p. 9.
  Citrination, a term of Alchemy, p. 30.
  Colin Clout, written in William Thynne’s house at Erith, p. 7.

  Drida, Queen, slayeth Kenelm, p. 47.

  Fermentacione, a term of Alchemy, p. 25.
  Florius, concerning, p. 35.
  Forage, winter provision, p. 30.

  Garland, oken of Emelye, p. 37.
  Gaunt, John of, his children born pre-nupt, p. 17.
  Gaunt, John of, his incontinency, p. 23.
  Gaunt, John of, his marriage, p. 23.
  Gower, query whether of the
  Gowers of Stittenham, p. 14.
  Gower, his greeting to Chaucer, p. 13.

  Harlottes, King of, p. 57.
  Heroner, a hawk for a heron, p. 31.
  Hyppe, the berye of the eglantine, p. 31.

  John of France, his ransome, p. 36.

  Knaresborough Castle, built by Serlo de Burgo, p. 18.
  Kenelm, slain by Queen Drida, p. 47.

  Leefe, for lothe, p. 42.
  Lincoln, Hugh of, p. 44.

  Mortone, John, Earl of, the manner of his creation, p. 16.
  Merecenrycke, p. 50.

  Navarre, Joan of, married to Henry IV., p. 18.
  Neville, Richard, Earl of Salisbury, his wife, p. 21.
  Nowell, meaning of, p. 32.

  Orfrayes, a sort of cloth of gold, p. 26.
  Ordeal, the manner of, p. 54.
  Oundye meaneth wavy, p. 28.

  Philippa, of Henault, her marriage, p. 11.
  Pilgrime’s Tale, setting forth the evil lives of churchmen, p. 6.
  Plowman’s Tale, not made by Sir T. Wyat, p. 7.
  Porpherye, a peculiar marble, p. 32.
  Printing, notes on the history of, p. 21.
  Pillars, silver, borne before Churchmen, p. 51.
  Poole, William de la, Merchant of Hull, lendeth money to the King,
      p. 18.
  Poole, Richard de la, a chief governor of Hull and Pincerna Regis,
      p. 18.
  Poole, Michael de la, Chancellor, p. 19.

  Resager, or Ratsbane, p. 28.
  Ribalds, king of, p. 57.
  Roses, chaplet of, for knighthood, not for poesy, p. 15.
  Rose, Romant of, notes on, p. 21.

  Sendale, a sylke stuffe, p. 32.
  Staple, Merchants of the, had no arms till 10 or 11 Ed. III., p. 13.
  Sterling money, p. 35.
  Straught, a better word than haughte, p. 41.
  Stork, the, wreaketh adultery, p. 55.
  Surrye or Russye, p. 43.

  Temple, lawyers not in the, till the latter part of Ed. III., p. 16.
  Theophraste, not Paraphraste, p. 44.
  Trepegett, an engine to cast stones, p. 33.
  Thynne, Sir John, reports that the parliament was minded to forbid
      Chaucer’s tales, p. 7.
  Thynne, William, in favour with Henry VIII., p. 6.
  Thynne, William, his collection of Chaucer’s MSS., p. 5.
  Thynne, William, protecteth John Skelton, p. 7.

  Vernacle, of the, p. 34.
  Veseye, Eustace de, p. 18.
  Visage for vassalage, p. 42.

  Walsingham, offended at temporall men being preferred to office,
      p. 20.
  Windsore, Lords son of, p. 52.
  Wiuer or Wivern, a serpent like unto a dragon, p. 33.
  Wolsey, his enmity to William Thynne, p. 7.
  Wolsey, his great power with the King, p. 7.
  Wyat, old Sir Thomas, did not make the Plowmans Tale, p. 7.


       *       *       *       *       *
           *       *       *       *
       *       *       *       *       *

_Errors and Inconsistencies_

Non-Roman Scripts

  In the 1865 text, thorn þ is used for Saxon “r” ꞃ:
    in saxon Meþecenþÿke which is the kingdome of Mercia, for so was
    Kenelme the sonne, and Kenulphus the father, both kinges of Mercia;
    the one reignynge 36 yeres, and the other murdred by his sister
    Quendrida, as ys before noted. And that yt is the kingdome of
    Mercia, the etymon of the woorde doth teache; for þÿk in the saxon
    tonge signyfyethe a kingdome; meþcen signyfyethe markes.

  The 1876 text uses the Saxon letterforms:
    Meꞃecenꞃÿke, ꞃÿk, meꞃcen.

_At the time of preparation (June 2009), Saxon letters had been assigned
Unicode values, but font support was extremely limited. Your text reader
will probably not be able to display the character._

  Similarly for Greek Χρ (Chi, rho):
    placinge ther xþemas (_Christmasse_) a p{ar}te of this tyme of
    Nowell .... ante xþi (_Christi_) natalitia viginti aut triginta
    dies quodam desiderio.
  The 1876 text gives only the expanded (Roman script) form of words
  in Chr-.

    for thus he writethe: נאל noel
      [_both editions misprint באל with bet ב for nun נ_]


  a careful copier with a clean pen, indefatiguable  [_unchanged_]
  a ribald wit might create terrible havock [_unchanged_]
  Footnote 2 [_reference missing, supplied from 1876 edition_]
  Martin Chuzzelwit the elder [_unchanged_]
  demanding why Falstalf [_unchanged_]

List of Thynne’s Works

  18 ... since the reign of the conqueror.  [_extraneous close quote_]

Errors corrected from 1876 edition:

  _This list includes missing letters that were silently supplied in
  1865: that is, the text is right but the MS reading was wrong. It
  does not include misplaced italics such as “tri{u}m” for “triu{m}”._

  the Romans in the heigh[t]e of their glorye  [heighe]
  selfe will or fonnd conceyte  [found]
  Chaucers woorkes haue byn sithens printed twyce  [sitheus]
  that lerned and eloquent kn[i]ghte  [knighte]
  as I have herde S^r Johne Thynne reporte  [St. Johne]
  as the chanons yomane  [chanous]
    [_all occurrences of “chanons” in this passage are printed
    “chanous” in 1865_]
  the recordes in Dorso Rotulor. patent.  [Rolulor]
    [_1876 edition also adds “me{m}b.” after “patent.”_]
  datu{m} per manu{m} Walteri Merton  [Walleri]
  consorti ipsius Regis &c.”  [_close quote missing_]
  “Rogero couentry &c  [_open quote missing_]
  so had the[y] fewer Rooses placed  [they]
  euerye manne to his owne iudgemente  [iudgemte]
  Gersone soughte no further meanynge   [meanyuge]
  tantiq{ue} quanti placuit vendiderunt.”  [_close quote missing_]
  (otherwise called “Flores Historiarum” or “Florilegus”)
    [_printed with open parenthesis, close bracket_]
  almoste to the heigh[t]e of perfect{i}one  [heighte]
  solitaq{ue} est hec vox cantari a plebe  [cantaria]
  shewe those courses of gouer[n]mente,  [gouernmente]
  (“Manye a florence.”)  [’ for ”]
  in another place callethe scutes or frenche crownes  [calle the]
  yo{u}r e[x]posit{i}one of unseriall  [exposit{i}one]
  tria virginis ora Dianæ,)  [_close parenthesis missing_]
  that all his streng[t]he and vitall Sprites  [strengthe]
  a pointe at streng[t]he is looste  [strengthe]
  agreethe not well with Chaucers meanynge  [Chancers]
  Whiche facte was [in] the 39. H. 3.  [_“in” not bracketed_]
  with change of many manner of meates,  [_superfluous close bracket_]
  Regis nomen superiori aut Iudici tribuitur,
    [_superfluous close quote_]
  Rex Ribaldoru{m} et prouostus Hospitii
    [_“pro-/vuostus” at line break_]
  si iteru{m} inventa in Balliuâ suâ  [Ballinâ]
  many iudgmentes mighte at leng[t]he obteyne  [lengthe]

Shared anomalies:

  Thus (withe hartye prayer comendinge
    [both versions have extra open bracket/parenthesis]
  I will passe over all those matters scito pede
    [both versions have “scito”: error for “cito”?]
  The lordes sonne of Windsore.)
    [both versions missing open bracket/parenthesis]
  by a mathesis or transpositione  [shared error for “metathesis”]

Textual differences, with 1876 reading shown in brackets:

  p{ar}soune and plowmane  [p{ar}sonne]
  Under the tytle of chaucers countaye,[4]  [countrye, no footnote]
  H. Regis patris nostri  [Henrici Regis]
  apud West {minsteriu}m  [Westm{onasterium}]   316
  In whiche are two unperfect{i}ons.  [imperfect{i}ons]
  thus sett downe to the forthe daye of februarye
    [... in the ferthe daye ...]
  with the daye when and where they presented her
    [_“with de daye” with footnote “MS. plainly de”_]
  apud Eboru{m} in comitatiua  [Ebor{ac}u{m}]
  the laude fulfilled is ouer all  [lande]  346
  For in truth yo{u}r armes of this S^r Johne Gower  [{th}e armes]
  an ensigne of his poetrye  [one]
  for he was an olde manne  [one]
  Ric. de la Poole  [Ric{hard}]
  continentem iij^c lxx^li xviij^s 1^d  [I^d (capital Eye for One)]
  factum ad Scaccariu{m} computator  [computator{is}]
  iiij^c marc.  [marc{as}]
  (a magistrate of greate welthe in Hull,)  [a marchante]
  Walsingham (who wroote longe after)  [w{hic}he wroote]
  by reasone of others mens dealinge
    [_“othere mens dealing{es}” with footnote “MS. others”_]
  and, as some have yt
    [and, [printinge,] as some have yt]
  In the title of the augmente  [argumente]
  w{hic}h Chaucer w{i}th muche of that matter omytted
    [w{i}th Chawcer,]
    [_footnote “? _for_ which Chaucer englisht”_]
  In the expositione of the olde wordes
    [_Footnote: “+of+ of” with first “of” boldface_]
  to oure nowe vnderstandinges  [vnderstandinge]
  beinge an indiffynyte speache  [one]
  an olde coyne of france  [one]
  I will produce twoo auctorauctors  [twoo Auctors]
  written in Gothyshe rymynge verse  [verses]
  That dame abstinence streyned
    [_“weyned” with footnote (MS) “streyned”_]
  And ganne her gratche as a Bygin.
    [_footnote (MS) “graithe”_]
  A large cover-cherfe of Thredde  [cover-cheife]
  whiche is true, for a gowshawke
    [_“goshawke”, with footnote “MS. gowshake”_]
  with her byll or talons  [talentes]
  an engine not muche vnlyke to the catapulte  [one engine]
  a Ramme to batter wales  [wal[l]es]
  Wherein yo{u} mistake the valewe of the florens  [a florens]
  the same Walsingha{m} in another place  [in other place]
  within the price of ij^s. x^d. [QR]
  --ij^s. x^d. [QR] de quibus florenis regal{ibus}
    [_in both passages, 1865 has the “QR” symbol while
    1876 expands to “q{uad}r{anta}”_]
  as were her younge and grene yeres  [was]
  yo{u} wolde haue us to reade  [haue us reade]
  save onlye the intellecte or vnderstandinge  [his intellecte]
  And twenty fadome of breedth, armes straughte  [breed th’armes]
  he[9] knocked at her[10] windowe
    [_1876 text ADDS “to make her the better to heare” after this
    phrase (skipped line in original MS?)_]
  are nerer to Sorria  [is nerer]
  reference to his antecedente, i. e. this worde wyfe
    [_word “i. e.” omitted_]
  eightene Jewes were broughte  fro{m} Lincolne
    [_1876 text ADDS [to London] in brackets after “broughte”_]
  For yf yt doe, &c.  [For yf yt doe, . . .]
  [_the fair Pertelote_]
    [parenthesised in 1865 text, moved to footnote in 1876]
  So that yf you nowe will  [yf yowe will]
  that hight Marche ... the bright sonne  [hight[e] ... bright[e]]
  and in the signe Taurus  [signe of Taurus]
  than in the weringe of furres  [than ys]
  “with change of many meates;”  [with many change of meates]
  kepe an equall proport{i}one and decorum  [one equall]
  But on these and suche petit matters  [in these]
  they are of [{no}?] great momente
    [1865 has “no” italicized and in parentheses;
    1876 omits question mark]
  as apperethe in the woordes  [by these woordes]
  Aristotle sayeth Bartholomeus  [sayethe &]
  I will not now treate;  [entreate]
  Whiche three edit[i]ons beinge verye unperfecte  [imperfecte]
  An angry wighte and chyderesse  [One angry]

The HTML version of this e-text includes a detailed record of
differences between the 1865 and 1876 editions. Neither edition
includes a facsimile of the original MS, so readers will have to
decide for themselves which differences reflect editorial decisions
and which ones are errors in one edition or the other.

Basic variations:

    Variations in punctuation and capitalization
    Decorative features of final letters, especially -ll printed
      with connecting line
    Font changes such as boldface instead of small capitals
    Prices are printed inline as ijs. and similar

    Initial v used throughout (medial u/v is variable)
    “you” always printed with superscript “u”
      (replacing both “you” and yo{u})
    “S^r” (superscript “r”) printed as “S{i}r” (italic “i”)
    “emongst(e)” always spelled with medial “e” as “emongest(e)”

    initial J or j printed as I (always capitalized)
    “than” spelled “then”
    “could(e), would(e), should(e)” spelled “cold(e), wold(e), shold(e)”
    in plurals or possessives of words ending in two consonants
      (other than -ll-), where 1865 has simple “-s”, 1876 has -{es}
    “which” written “whiche”, sometimes “wh{ic}he”
    “your” transcribed “yo{u}r”
    final “-eth” spelled “-ethe”

    “y” for “i”
      _The two occurrences of “it” in 1865 may be errors; 1876 has
      “yt”, agreeing with all other occurrences of the word._
    “i” for “e”, “aw” for “au” (“Chawcer”)
    several occurrences of “an” are read as “one”
    ampersand (&) for word “and”
    final “-e”, especially in “much(e), such(e)”;
      sometimes in “doth(e), hath(e)” and other words
    single “o” changed to “oo”: “moore”, “woordes”
    some Latin citations have final -e for -æ
    words ending -o{r} transcribed as -o{u}r
    word divisions such as “as well”, “my selfe”

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