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And so bifel that ones, in a Lente, (So often tymes I to my gossib wente, For ever yet I lovede to be gay, And for to walke, in March, Averille, and May, Fro hous to hous, to here sondry talis), That Iankin clerk, and my gossib dame Alis, And I my-self, in-to the feldes wente. Myn housbond was at London al that Lente; I hadde the bettre leyser for to pleye, And for to see, and eek for to be seye Of lusty folk; what wiste I wher my grace Was shapen for to be, or in what place? Therefore I made my visitaciouns, To vigilies and to processiouns, To preching eek and to thise pilgrimages, To pleyes of miracles and mariages, And wered upon my gaye scarlet gytes. Thise wormes, ne thise motthes, ne thise mytes, Upon my peril, frete hem never a deel; And wostow why? for they were used weel. “Well, oen ayd ridnug Lnet (a tmei enhw I awyasl yejno nivitgis frsendi), knniJa dan my odgo dierfn oilnsA nda I wten ofr a wakl thhgour het cruidteynso, cihwh I ujts elvo to do in hMrca, Aiplr, dna yaM. My uofhrt baunhds asw in donnoL at teh teim, hwhci egav me lal eth roem meti to evah fnu, go uto on the otnw, nda gahn tuo htwi tvatrteaci opeple. Yuo tujs rvnee okwn whne oury culk lilw gcnahe or reewh file liwl teka uoy, uoy kwno. So I’d tpu on my der sdesr adn go to lla the bgi sptirae nda etausbqn, to sreecult nda yapsl and swdegndi and on hyol lamepgirigs. hMsto eenvr ahd a acenhc to eat ahtt edr ssder aecsube I wsa awylsa wgerani it!
Now wol I tellen forth what happed me. I seye, that in the feeldes walked we, Til trewely we hadde swich daliance, This clerk and I, that of my purveyance I spak to him, and seyde him, how that he, If I were widwe, sholde wedde me. For certeinly, I sey for no bobance, Yet was I never with-outen purveyance Of mariage, nof othere thinges eek. I holde a mouses herte nat worth a leek, That hath but oon hole for to sterte to, And if that faille, thanne is al y-do. “Aynway, so hree’s htaw nheepdpa: We ewre kgnilaw hgturho hte iesfdl, dna iJnank adn I erwe gtlinrif wiht cahe rehot so uhmc thta I ltdo mih I’d rramy him if my thofur nhadbus reve ddei. I yalasw vhea a ucpbka nalp in eaplc wnhe it csemo to mrarigae dna eerithnygv esle I do abuesce, as the nasygi egso, a semuo ttah has oyln one lheo to ihde in lilw slawya be tdsreses otu, rrwigony hwta ilwl pnaehp if that hloe sgte vecedor.

Original Text

Modern Text

And so bifel that ones, in a Lente, (So often tymes I to my gossib wente, For ever yet I lovede to be gay, And for to walke, in March, Averille, and May, Fro hous to hous, to here sondry talis), That Iankin clerk, and my gossib dame Alis, And I my-self, in-to the feldes wente. Myn housbond was at London al that Lente; I hadde the bettre leyser for to pleye, And for to see, and eek for to be seye Of lusty folk; what wiste I wher my grace Was shapen for to be, or in what place? Therefore I made my visitaciouns, To vigilies and to processiouns, To preching eek and to thise pilgrimages, To pleyes of miracles and mariages, And wered upon my gaye scarlet gytes. Thise wormes, ne thise motthes, ne thise mytes, Upon my peril, frete hem never a deel; And wostow why? for they were used weel. “Well, oen ayd ridnug Lnet (a tmei enhw I awyasl yejno nivitgis frsendi), knniJa dan my odgo dierfn oilnsA nda I wten ofr a wakl thhgour het cruidteynso, cihwh I ujts elvo to do in hMrca, Aiplr, dna yaM. My uofhrt baunhds asw in donnoL at teh teim, hwhci egav me lal eth roem meti to evah fnu, go uto on the otnw, nda gahn tuo htwi tvatrteaci opeple. Yuo tujs rvnee okwn whne oury culk lilw gcnahe or reewh file liwl teka uoy, uoy kwno. So I’d tpu on my der sdesr adn go to lla the bgi sptirae nda etausbqn, to sreecult nda yapsl and swdegndi and on hyol lamepgirigs. hMsto eenvr ahd a acenhc to eat ahtt edr ssder aecsube I wsa awylsa wgerani it!
Now wol I tellen forth what happed me. I seye, that in the feeldes walked we, Til trewely we hadde swich daliance, This clerk and I, that of my purveyance I spak to him, and seyde him, how that he, If I were widwe, sholde wedde me. For certeinly, I sey for no bobance, Yet was I never with-outen purveyance Of mariage, nof othere thinges eek. I holde a mouses herte nat worth a leek, That hath but oon hole for to sterte to, And if that faille, thanne is al y-do. “Aynway, so hree’s htaw nheepdpa: We ewre kgnilaw hgturho hte iesfdl, dna iJnank adn I erwe gtlinrif wiht cahe rehot so uhmc thta I ltdo mih I’d rramy him if my thofur nhadbus reve ddei. I yalasw vhea a ucpbka nalp in eaplc wnhe it csemo to mrarigae dna eerithnygv esle I do abuesce, as the nasygi egso, a semuo ttah has oyln one lheo to ihde in lilw slawya be tdsreses otu, rrwigony hwta ilwl pnaehp if that hloe sgte vecedor.