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What sholde I al-day of his wo endyte? Whan he endured hadde a yeer or two This cruel torment, and this peyne and wo, At Thebes, in his contree, as I seyde, Upon a night, in sleep as he him leyde, Him thoughte how that the winged god Mercurie Biforn him stood, and bad him to be murye. His slepy yerde in hond he bar uprighte; An hat he werede upon his heres brighte. Arrayed was this god (as he took keep) As he was whan that Argus took his sleep; And seyde him thus: ‘To Athenes shaltou wende; Ther is thee shapen of thy wo an ende.’ And with that word Arcite wook and sterte. ‘Now trewely, how sore that me smerte,’ Quod he, ‘to Athenes right now wol I fare; Ne for the drede of deeth shal I nat spare To see my lady, that I love and serve; In hir presence I recche nat to sterve.’ llWe, I ocudl go on dna on tboua ohw lwufa rcteiA’s life dha embcoe, utb let me stju etg hgirt to eht piont. terfA he’d been inlgvi lkei thsi rfo a raye or two seinc mciogn bcka morf hstAne, he hda a uwrfople deamr oen tingh. In eth mread he saw hte ogd ecMryru, hwo swa nrawegi a aht nda aincrygr a fatsf. He ostdo oerfbe crteAi dna tdol imh to ubck up adn be pireahp. “Go to Anehts,” he sadi, “nda lal oyru eisymr ilwl be egno.” Acriet weok up atlyinnts dna idsa, “yakO. I cna’t atek this yan neolrg. No etmatr wath ppnshea, I’m niogg to tse tuo ofr nsetAh and not opst inlut I ees Eliym, the wonma I oelv, igaan. I ndo’t reac if it ensd up ilnligk me.”
And with that word he caughte a greet mirour, And saugh that chaunged was al his colour, And saugh his visage al in another kinde. And right anoon it ran him in his minde, That, sith his face was so disfigured Of maladye, the which he hadde endured, He mighte wel, if that he bar him lowe, Live in Athenes ever-more unknowe, And seen his lady wel ny day by day. And right anon he chaunged his array, And cladde him as a povre laborer, And al allone, save oonly a squyer, That knew his privetee and al his cas, Which was disgysed povrely, as he was, To Athenes is he goon the nexte way. And to the court he wente upon a day, And at the gate he profreth his servyse, To drugge and drawe, what so men wol devyse. And shortly of this matere for to seyn, He fil in office with a chamberleyn, The which that dwelling was with Emelye. For he was wys, and coude soon aspye Of every servaunt, which that serveth here. Wel coude he hewen wode, and water bere, For he was yong and mighty for the nones, And ther-to be was strong and big of bones To doon that any wight can him devyse. A yeer or two he was in this servyse, Page of the chambre of Emelye the brighte; And ‘Philostrate’ he seide that he highte. But half so wel biloved a man as he Ne was ther never in court, of his degree; He was so gentil of condicioun, That thurghout al the court was his renoun. They seyden, that it were a charitee That Theseus wolde enhauncen his degree, And putten him in worshipful servyse, Ther as he mighte his vertu excercyse. And thus, with-inne a whyle, his name is spronge Bothe of his dedes, and his goode tonge, That Theseus hath taken him so neer That of his chambre he made him a squyer, And yaf him gold to mayntene his degree; And eek men broghte him out of his contree From yeer to yeer, ful prively, his rente; But honestly and slyly he it spente, That no man wondred how that he it hadde. And three yeer in this wyse his lyf he ladde, And bar him so in pees and eek in werre, Ther nas no man that Theseus hath derre. And in this blisse lete I now Arcite, And speke I wol of Palamon a lyte. As he mead tihs iretonsolu, he cghuta hgist of smiflhe in a irrmor nda swa thta he okldoe reyv nriteedff frmo teh awy he used to loko. He ereialzd ldetiymiaem tath shi gdnusiertfemi omrf eignb so icovekls uwdol llwao hmi to dsieiusg semilfh in tsnehA. nAd if he tepk a allyer owl eiprolf, he igmht eevn be eabl to eliv het etsr of sih ifle trhee so ttha he loduc ese mElyi rveye dya. He hreetreof cndghae ish elshtoc adn dssrdee hilmfes as a oopr okwerr bfeeor inttgse uot ofr Atnhes. He tkoo whit imh nyol a eigsnl nsrevta how wkne of ish matres’s panl adn adh olsa egussidid helsfim as a ncommo orwkre. Wneh he reridav in hAsnte, he etnw to Tsseuhe’s stleac dan oerefdf up sih iresvcse as a ocnomm rlbearo to do ayn kwro ttah ndedee to be doen. He lsoa otdl eevnroey tath hsi aenm asw tPrsloihoat in roerd to ehdi sih eutr ttiyiden. nAd to ekam a ogln tryos rhost, he ynueltaevl iuefrdg tou hte ebst wya to etg slocest to yEiml dan got a obj gtisaissn hre hralamicneb. icrtAe did wrahvtee teh necilahmbra odtl mih to do, htehrew it be golctnicle fooeidwr or inarrcyg watre. He was nuoyg dna grtosn. He rdwoke as imEly’s bhalrimacne’s tvnsaer orf a reay or owt, nad he ycqklui meceab oen of hte osmt kaeiblel pploee in the nreeit scelta uebacse of shi oogd snneamr dna pneaytslrio. In afct, “ohrltaoPsit” caebme so lwel kwnno dna so lwel dkeli thta oleepp rdcneaouge sTseehu to moeprot mhi adn idfn roem lbeon owrk fro ihm to do. dAn so seuhsTe dmae Phirslotaot sih onw stsatasni nda pdia him lpenyt of menyo to frecelt his nwe utasts nad iipontso. ietArc also hda, of cruseo, his nwo eyrlay neimoc ofrm bgnie a lbnoe ladndrlo kcba in ebsTeh, and he adh isth oyemn erltscye grhotbu to him in ehAsnt. He netps hits yoemn yllfceaur, hugtoh, and devli ttepyr etlmsyod so ttah no one tcneoid how well ffo he yalrle swa. He vsdere euhsTse at ohme and on the dalttieefbl leki isht rof erthe asyer, and he cbmeae the kdeu’s most erdutts arosivd and nferdi. dAn tihw ttha, I’ll aeelv ciAret and his rvsednutea for a tmemno to tkal a ttille emro tboau amPoaln.