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A large St. Christopher of silver sheen.
A horn he had; the baldric was of green.
A forester was he truly, as I guess.

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There was, likewise, a Nun, a PRIORESS, That of her smiling was full simple and coy. Her greatest oath was but “ by Saint Eloy;" And she was naméd Madam Eglentine. Right well she sang the services divine, Entuned in her nose with accent sweet; And French she spake full properly and neat, After the school of Stratford, at Bow town, For French of Paris was to her unknown. At table she was scrupulous withal; No morsel from her lips did she let fall, Nor in her sauce would dip her fingers deep. Well could she carry a morsel, and well keep, That not a drop e'er fell upon her breast. In courtesy her pleasure much did rest. Her dainty upper-lip she wiped so clean That in þer cup there was no farthing seen Of grease, when she had drunk; and for her meat Full seemly bent she forward on her seat. And of a truth she was of great disport; Pleasant to all and amiable of port. It gave her pain to counterfeit the

ways Of court; its stately manner and displays; And to be held in distant reverence.

But for to tell you of her conscience, She was so tender and so piteous, She would shed tears if that she saw a mouse Caught in a trap, if it were hurt or dead. She had some small hounds, which she always fed

With roasted meat, and milk, and fine wheat bread;
But sore wept she if one of them were dead,
Or if men with a stick e'er struck it smart:
And all was conscience and tender heart.

Full seemly was her kerchief crimp'd across;
Her nose well cut and long; eyes grey as glass;
Her mouth was small, and thereto soft and red,
And certainly a forehead fair she had :
It was almost a span in breadth, I trow;
And truly she was not of stature low.
Most proper was her cloak, as I was ware.
Of coral small about her arm she bare
Two strings of beads, bedizen'd all with green,
And thereon hung a broach of gold full sheen,
On which was graven first a crowned A,
And after “ Amor vincit omnia."

A CLERK there was, from Oxford, in the press
Who in pure logic placed his happiness.
His horse was lean as any garden rake;
And he was not right fat, I undertake;
But hollow look’d, and sober, and ill fed.
His uppermost short cloak was a bare thread,
For he had got no benefice as yet,
Nor for a worldly office was he fit.
For he had rather have at his bed's head
Some twenty volumes, clothed in black or red,
Of Aristotle and his philosophy,
Than richest robes, fiddle, or psaltery.
But though a true philosopher was he,
Yet had he little gold beneath his key;
But every farthing that his friends e'er lcnt,
In books and learning was it always spent :

And busily he pray'd for the sweet souls
Of those who gave him wherewith for the schools.
He bent on study his chief care and heed.
Not a word spake be more than there was neeil,
And this was said with form and gravest stress,
And short and quick, full of sententiousness.
Sounding in moral virtue was his speech,
And gladly would he learn, and gladly teach.

A SERJEANT of the Law, wise, wary, arch, Who oft had gossip'd long in the church porch, Was also there, full rich of excellence. Discreet he was and of great reverence; For such he seem'd, his words were all so wise Justice he was full often in assize; By patent and commission from the crown, For his keen science and his high renown. Of fees and robes he many had I ween: So great a purchaser was nowhere seen. All was fee simple to him, in effect; His rightful gainings no one could suspect. So busy a man as he no circuit has; And yet he seeméd busier than he was. He had at tip of tongue all cases plain, With all the judgments, since King William's reign. He likewise could indite such perfect law, None in his parchments could pinch out a flaw: And every statute he knew well by rote. He rode but homely in a medley coat, With band of twill'd silk round the loins made fast: On his array no more time shall I waste.

A FRANKLIN* in this company appear'd:
White as a daisy was this Franklin's beard.
With sanguine hues did his complexion shine.
Well loved he in the morn a sop in wine.
His days he gave to pleasure, every one;
For he was Epicurus's own son,
Who held the opinion that a life of bliss
Was verily man's perfect happiness.

An householder of great extent was he;
He was St. Juliant in his own countréy.
With bread and ale his board was always crown'd:
A better cellar nowhere could be found.
His pantry never was without baked meat,
And fish and flesh, so plenteous and complete,
It snow'd within his house of meat and drink,
Of all the dainties that a man could think,
After the sundry seasons of the year,
His meats thus changed he, and his supper cheer.
Full many a partridge fat had he in mew,
And many a bream and many a jack in stew.
Woe to his cook, unless his sauces were
Made piquant rich, and ready all his gear.
His table with repletion heavy lay
Amidst his hall, throughout the feast-long day.

At sessions there was he both lord and sire.
Full often time he had been Knight o' the Shire.
A dagger, and a purse of netted silk,
Hung at his girdle, white as morning milk.

* A large Freeholder, and wealthy country gentleman.

+“St. Julian was eminent for providing his votaries with good lodging, and accommodations of all sorts."— Tyrwhitt.

Sheriff-comptroller-magistrate ne'd been;
A worthier franklin there was nowhere seen.

A HABERDASHER, and a CARPENTER, A WEAVER, DYER, TAPSTER, eke were here, All in the self-same livery attired, And with a grave fraternity inspired. Right fresh and new their spruce appearance was. Their knives were not trickt out with common brass, But all with silver neatly overwrought; Their girdles and their pouches eke, methought. Each seem'd a worthy burgess, fit and fair To sit in the guild hall on high-floor’d chair; And for the wisdom that his brain could plan Was well cut out to be an alderman. Enough for this they had of kine and rent, And very gladly would their wives assent, Or else they were to blame, I swear by Adam: 'Tis a fine thing to be entitled “ Madam" And foremost walk to fêtes, at eve or morn, And have a mantle royally up-borne.

A Cook was carried with this pilgrim coil, The chickens and the marrow-bones to boil, And powder tarts, and frost the sweatmeats rare. To London ale, with one draught, he could swear. And he could roast, and seethe, and broil, and fry, Make pounded game soups, and well bake a pie. But great harm was it—as it seem'd to meThat on his shin an angry sore had he. But for blanc-mange, he made that with the best.

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