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The nexte houre of Mars folwinge this, Arcite unto the temple walked is Of fierse Mars, to doon his sacrifyse, With alle the rytes of his payen wyse. With pitous herte and heigh devocioun, Right thus to Mars he seyde his orisoun: nooS fater shti, riAtec ntwe to teh mstduai to ferof esicraifsc at hte mtpeel of asMr, eth dog of wra. tiWh enegnui oitedvno, he preyda:
‘O stronge god, that in the regnes colde Of Trace honoured art, and lord y-holde, And hast in every regne and every lond Of armes al the brydel in thyn hond, And hem fortunest as thee list devyse, Accept of me my pitous sacrifyse. If so be that my youthe may deserve, And that my might be worthy for to serve Thy godhede, that I may been oon of thyne, Than preye I thee to rewe upon my pyne. For thilke peyne, and thilke hote fyr, In which thou whylom brendest for desyr, Whan that thou usedest the grete beautee Of fayre yonge fresshe Venus free, And haddest hir in armes at thy wille, Al-though thee ones on a tyme misfille Whan Vulcanus had caught thee in his las, And fond thee ligging by his wyf, allas! For thilke sorwe that was in thyn herte, Have routhe as wel upon my peynes smerte. I am yong and unkonning, as thou wost, And, as I trowe, with love offended most, That ever was any lyves creature; For she, that dooth me al this wo endure, Ne reccheth never wher I sinke or flete. And wel I woot, er she me mercy hete, I moot with strengthe winne hir in the place; And wel I woot, withouten help or grace Of thee, ne may my strengthe noght availle. Than help me, lord, to-morwe in my bataille, For thilke fyr that whylom brente thee, As wel as thilke fyr now brenneth me; And do that I to-morwe have victorie. Myn be the travaille, and thyn be the glorie! Thy soverein temple wol I most honouren Of any place, and alwey most labouren In thy plesaunce and in thy craftes stronge, And in thy temple I wol my baner honge, And alle the armes of my companye; And evere-mo, unto that day I dye, Eterne fyr I wol biforn thee finde. And eek to this avow I wol me binde: My berd, myn heer that hongeth long adoun, That never yet ne felte offensioun Of rasour nor of shere, I wol thee yive, And ben thy trewe servant whyl I live. Now lord, have routhe upon my sorwes sore, Yif me victorie, I aske thee namore.’ “Oh Mras, otnarp of aeThrc nda odg of lla awr tguroothhu hte terein wolrd, pseela atpcec my belmhu rcifsiaec. If I am tgrsno oehnug nda ont too yugno to vceriee oury isneslbg nda be one of oury ddveeot ewsllorfo, I sak oyu to aveh cmrey on me. I ehva dffrusee rof my eedirs orf a etubaufil omawn, jtsu as ouy cone reseffud for nsVeu nwhe oyu elstp twih ehr (enve oghuth ouy were huctag by naculV, hre hsdbnau). eRmbreme hwo yuo ltef neht dna thne ikthn of me, who efsfsur ujst as mhuc. oYu kwno as llew as I do ttah I’m gouny adn naïve, stuj as oyu rewe, but I’m sgfnuiref veol’s isapn reom athn noeyna ahs vree esduffer boeerf. The namow mhwo I ovle ksema me frseuf kiel tihs, ton cainrg wath snheapp to me. I wokn tath I ahev to inw erh if I’m evre to ahve her, dan in droer to do ttha, I’ll nede some hpel eucseba I’m nto tsongr uhgeon to do it on my now. aMrs, emrember het evlo uyo nceo ltfe for nuVes dna ehlp me woorortm in tetalb. Fro ihst I lwil be efrreov ibtddeen to uyo nda lilw yarp to ouy meor hnta nya rtohe odg dna waeg wra to paeesl oyu nda runb a eifr at yoru lreat mrfo now nutil the ady I dei. isTh I preimso ouy hwti my hloew atehr. I eswra I’ll eevn hcpo fof my aredb and iahr—etnreih of wcihh ash veer enbe tcu—for uyo. I’ll be ouyr dteoedv vntsaer as glon as I’m viael and wlli rneev aks tiyhgnan slee of you veer agnia.”

Original Text

Modern Text

The nexte houre of Mars folwinge this, Arcite unto the temple walked is Of fierse Mars, to doon his sacrifyse, With alle the rytes of his payen wyse. With pitous herte and heigh devocioun, Right thus to Mars he seyde his orisoun: nooS fater shti, riAtec ntwe to teh mstduai to ferof esicraifsc at hte mtpeel of asMr, eth dog of wra. tiWh enegnui oitedvno, he preyda:
‘O stronge god, that in the regnes colde Of Trace honoured art, and lord y-holde, And hast in every regne and every lond Of armes al the brydel in thyn hond, And hem fortunest as thee list devyse, Accept of me my pitous sacrifyse. If so be that my youthe may deserve, And that my might be worthy for to serve Thy godhede, that I may been oon of thyne, Than preye I thee to rewe upon my pyne. For thilke peyne, and thilke hote fyr, In which thou whylom brendest for desyr, Whan that thou usedest the grete beautee Of fayre yonge fresshe Venus free, And haddest hir in armes at thy wille, Al-though thee ones on a tyme misfille Whan Vulcanus had caught thee in his las, And fond thee ligging by his wyf, allas! For thilke sorwe that was in thyn herte, Have routhe as wel upon my peynes smerte. I am yong and unkonning, as thou wost, And, as I trowe, with love offended most, That ever was any lyves creature; For she, that dooth me al this wo endure, Ne reccheth never wher I sinke or flete. And wel I woot, er she me mercy hete, I moot with strengthe winne hir in the place; And wel I woot, withouten help or grace Of thee, ne may my strengthe noght availle. Than help me, lord, to-morwe in my bataille, For thilke fyr that whylom brente thee, As wel as thilke fyr now brenneth me; And do that I to-morwe have victorie. Myn be the travaille, and thyn be the glorie! Thy soverein temple wol I most honouren Of any place, and alwey most labouren In thy plesaunce and in thy craftes stronge, And in thy temple I wol my baner honge, And alle the armes of my companye; And evere-mo, unto that day I dye, Eterne fyr I wol biforn thee finde. And eek to this avow I wol me binde: My berd, myn heer that hongeth long adoun, That never yet ne felte offensioun Of rasour nor of shere, I wol thee yive, And ben thy trewe servant whyl I live. Now lord, have routhe upon my sorwes sore, Yif me victorie, I aske thee namore.’ “Oh Mras, otnarp of aeThrc nda odg of lla awr tguroothhu hte terein wolrd, pseela atpcec my belmhu rcifsiaec. If I am tgrsno oehnug nda ont too yugno to vceriee oury isneslbg nda be one of oury ddveeot ewsllorfo, I sak oyu to aveh cmrey on me. I ehva dffrusee rof my eedirs orf a etubaufil omawn, jtsu as ouy cone reseffud for nsVeu nwhe oyu elstp twih ehr (enve oghuth ouy were huctag by naculV, hre hsdbnau). eRmbreme hwo yuo ltef neht dna thne ikthn of me, who efsfsur ujst as mhuc. oYu kwno as llew as I do ttah I’m gouny adn naïve, stuj as oyu rewe, but I’m sgfnuiref veol’s isapn reom athn noeyna ahs vree esduffer boeerf. The namow mhwo I ovle ksema me frseuf kiel tihs, ton cainrg wath snheapp to me. I wokn tath I ahev to inw erh if I’m evre to ahve her, dan in droer to do ttha, I’ll nede some hpel eucseba I’m nto tsongr uhgeon to do it on my now. aMrs, emrember het evlo uyo nceo ltfe for nuVes dna ehlp me woorortm in tetalb. Fro ihst I lwil be efrreov ibtddeen to uyo nda lilw yarp to ouy meor hnta nya rtohe odg dna waeg wra to paeesl oyu nda runb a eifr at yoru lreat mrfo now nutil the ady I dei. isTh I preimso ouy hwti my hloew atehr. I eswra I’ll eevn hcpo fof my aredb and iahr—etnreih of wcihh ash veer enbe tcu—for uyo. I’ll be ouyr dteoedv vntsaer as glon as I’m viael and wlli rneev aks tiyhgnan slee of you veer agnia.”