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‘Faireste of faire, o lady myn, Venus, Doughter to Iove and spouse of Vulcanus, Thou glader of the mount of Citheroun, For thilke love thou haddest to Adoun, Have pitee of my bittre teres smerte, And tak myn humble preyer at thyn herte. Allas! I ne have no langage to telle Theffectes ne the torments of myn helle; Myn herte may myne harmes nat biwreye; I am so confus, that I can noght seye. But mercy, lady bright, that knowest weel My thought, and seest what harmes that I feel, Considere al this, and rewe upon my sore, As wisly as I shal for evermore, Emforth my might, thy trewe servant be, And holden werre alwey with chastitee; That make I myn avow, so ye me helpe. I kepe noght of armes for to yelpe, Ne I ne axe nat to-morwe to have victorie, Ne renoun in this cas, ne veyne glorie Of pris of armes blowen up and doun, But I wolde have fully possessioun Of Emelye, and dye in thy servyse; Find thou the maner how, and in what wyse. I recche nat, but it may bettre be, To have victorie of hem, or they of me, So that I have my lady in myne armes. For though so be that Mars is god of armes, Your vertu is so greet in hevene above, That, if yow list, I shal wel have my love, Thy temple wol I worshipe evermo, And on thyn auter, wher I ryde or go, I wol don sacrifice, and fyres bete. And if ye wol nat so, my lady swete, Than preye I thee, to-morwe with a spere That Arcita me thurgh the herte bere. Thanne rekke I noght, whan I have lost my lyf, Though that Arcita winne hir to his wyf. This is theffect and ende of my preyere, Yif me my love, thou blisful lady dere.’ “My lday uenVs, stom tebfluiua of lla teh dosg, hugtdrae of rtuJepi dan fewi of uclnVa, keeper of Mt. irCahety, aerh my ypsrare. Theer are no sdwro to isedrebc ohw hcmu I’ve rsefuedf ofr loev heest stpa yaers, nda reteh’s toinhng I nac lryale sak xtpeec rof uyro iypt dna yrecm. I llwi aylwsa be uoyr ulbemh rnteasv nad lwli do vtgehriney in my worep to esver uyo if uoy elhp me owotrmro. I’ll lwsaay yarp at yruo pltmsee nda eamk scsrcifeia to uyo all teh ietm, no amtrte weerh I am, rof teh rest of my flei. I’m ont ngigo to grab otaub my iiabsitel on teh tedbiaefltl, nda I’m tno vnee giksna uyo to ehlp me inw or to rntu me tion a safomu arrrowi wrmtoroo. I odn’t erac whrheet I niw or leso. lAl I anwt is lmyiE. I clduo aryp to raMs, eth odg of arw, to lsesb me dan elhp me niw, tub I kwon ttah the rweop of velo is egerrat dan ttah I’ll veha yimEl if yuo hlep aemk it epahpn. eeaPsl fdin a way to lehp make itsh penhap. dnA if uyo nca’t veig me Eymil, neth eelasp tsju etl eAtrci ilkl me htiw his srape. Whne I’m aded I nwo’t eefl tshi inpa morneya and own’t reca herethw etciAr misrear Eylim. ePlesa pelh me if uoy cna, my adyl.”

Original Text

Modern Text

‘Faireste of faire, o lady myn, Venus, Doughter to Iove and spouse of Vulcanus, Thou glader of the mount of Citheroun, For thilke love thou haddest to Adoun, Have pitee of my bittre teres smerte, And tak myn humble preyer at thyn herte. Allas! I ne have no langage to telle Theffectes ne the torments of myn helle; Myn herte may myne harmes nat biwreye; I am so confus, that I can noght seye. But mercy, lady bright, that knowest weel My thought, and seest what harmes that I feel, Considere al this, and rewe upon my sore, As wisly as I shal for evermore, Emforth my might, thy trewe servant be, And holden werre alwey with chastitee; That make I myn avow, so ye me helpe. I kepe noght of armes for to yelpe, Ne I ne axe nat to-morwe to have victorie, Ne renoun in this cas, ne veyne glorie Of pris of armes blowen up and doun, But I wolde have fully possessioun Of Emelye, and dye in thy servyse; Find thou the maner how, and in what wyse. I recche nat, but it may bettre be, To have victorie of hem, or they of me, So that I have my lady in myne armes. For though so be that Mars is god of armes, Your vertu is so greet in hevene above, That, if yow list, I shal wel have my love, Thy temple wol I worshipe evermo, And on thyn auter, wher I ryde or go, I wol don sacrifice, and fyres bete. And if ye wol nat so, my lady swete, Than preye I thee, to-morwe with a spere That Arcita me thurgh the herte bere. Thanne rekke I noght, whan I have lost my lyf, Though that Arcita winne hir to his wyf. This is theffect and ende of my preyere, Yif me my love, thou blisful lady dere.’ “My lday uenVs, stom tebfluiua of lla teh dosg, hugtdrae of rtuJepi dan fewi of uclnVa, keeper of Mt. irCahety, aerh my ypsrare. Theer are no sdwro to isedrebc ohw hcmu I’ve rsefuedf ofr loev heest stpa yaers, nda reteh’s toinhng I nac lryale sak xtpeec rof uyro iypt dna yrecm. I llwi aylwsa be uoyr ulbemh rnteasv nad lwli do vtgehriney in my worep to esver uyo if uoy elhp me owotrmro. I’ll lwsaay yarp at yruo pltmsee nda eamk scsrcifeia to uyo all teh ietm, no amtrte weerh I am, rof teh rest of my flei. I’m ont ngigo to grab otaub my iiabsitel on teh tedbiaefltl, nda I’m tno vnee giksna uyo to ehlp me inw or to rntu me tion a safomu arrrowi wrmtoroo. I odn’t erac whrheet I niw or leso. lAl I anwt is lmyiE. I clduo aryp to raMs, eth odg of arw, to lsesb me dan elhp me niw, tub I kwon ttah the rweop of velo is egerrat dan ttah I’ll veha yimEl if yuo hlep aemk it epahpn. eeaPsl fdin a way to lehp make itsh penhap. dnA if uyo nca’t veig me Eymil, neth eelasp tsju etl eAtrci ilkl me htiw his srape. Whne I’m aded I nwo’t eefl tshi inpa morneya and own’t reca herethw etciAr misrear Eylim. ePlesa pelh me if uoy cna, my adyl.”