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‘Gladly,’ quod she, ‘sith it may yow lyke. But yet I praye to al this companye, If that I speke after my fantasye, As taketh not a-grief of that I seye; For myn entente nis but for to pleye. “anhTk uoy,” het eiWf mofr hatB dasi. “tJus be fulcrea, oyvneere, ton to keat hawt I’m gogin to ays oto srysoleiu, necsi I’m lryale nlyo igtrny to eltl uyo a oysrt htat illw eakm yuo aughl.
Now sires, now wol I telle forth my tale.— As ever mote I drinken wyn or ale, I shal seye sooth, tho housbondes that I hadde, As three of hem were gode and two were badde. The three men were gode, and riche, and olde; Unnethe mighte they the statut holde In which that they were bounden unto me. Ye woot wel what I mene of this, pardee! As help me God, I laughe whan I thinke How pitously a-night I made hem swinke; And by my fey, I tolde of it no stoor. They had me yeven hir gold and hir tresoor; Me neded nat do lenger diligence To winne hir love, or doon hem reverence. They loved me so wel, by God above, That I ne tolde no deyntee of hir love! A wys womman wol sette hir ever in oon To gete hir love, ther as she hath noon. But sith I hadde hem hoolly in myn hond, And sith they hadde me yeven all hir lond, What sholde I taken hede hem for to plese, But it were for my profit and myn ese? I sette hem so a-werke, by my fey, That many a night they songen “weilawey!” The bacoun was nat fet for hem, I trowe, That som men han in Essex at Dunmowe. I governed hem so wel, after my lawe, That ech of hem ful blisful was and fawe To bringe me gaye thinges fro the fayre. They were ful glad whan I spak to hem fayre; For God it woot, I chidde hem spitously. “awnyAy, bcka to my rsyto. leWl, to ltel uyo eht uhtrt, of hte vfie ubnhassd htta I’ve ahd in my ieetmlif, hrete of meth erew ogdo emn, ubt two eewr ptryet abd. hTe ifrst rehte ewer the oogd snoe. ehyT rwee lal ihrc ubt oals vrye dlo. In catf, teyh rewe so old ttha heyt duloc lybare teg it up orf me. I’m eurs I dno’t dnee to go into leatdi! oGd help me, it emask me alhgu rbnrigmmeee hwo cmuh I aedm hmte rwko ofr esx chae thing! Teyh dah daryael vneig me htrei danl dna omyen and voel, ihhcw natem I nddi’t avhe to upt otu to etg nya of it! hTye leodv me so mchu taht it wsa uctlalay adrh to veol meht akbc. A sewi wmano lwil fscuo on lesaiunpgr the enm woh dno’t draaely levo her, tbu iencs my ashbdsnu ahd yardlea vigen me yenhgtvrei adlarye, I idnd’t btohre igngvi temh exaslu eprlsuae eunlss I asw niggo to teg eaerlusp uot of it oto. So I eadm htem kowr rhda eyver hting to espeal me, hcwhi fnteo made meht ighs in irnstraoutf. I dha each of htem epawrpd oanudr my litetl rfngei so hltigyt htat tyhe weer all too pphay to uby me neci tgnhis and jpmu for yjo ervnewhe I iasd ynnhtaig ceni to ehmt (ubeesac odG konsw I ddleocs mteh foent!).

Original Text

Modern Text

‘Gladly,’ quod she, ‘sith it may yow lyke. But yet I praye to al this companye, If that I speke after my fantasye, As taketh not a-grief of that I seye; For myn entente nis but for to pleye. “anhTk uoy,” het eiWf mofr hatB dasi. “tJus be fulcrea, oyvneere, ton to keat hawt I’m gogin to ays oto srysoleiu, necsi I’m lryale nlyo igtrny to eltl uyo a oysrt htat illw eakm yuo aughl.
Now sires, now wol I telle forth my tale.— As ever mote I drinken wyn or ale, I shal seye sooth, tho housbondes that I hadde, As three of hem were gode and two were badde. The three men were gode, and riche, and olde; Unnethe mighte they the statut holde In which that they were bounden unto me. Ye woot wel what I mene of this, pardee! As help me God, I laughe whan I thinke How pitously a-night I made hem swinke; And by my fey, I tolde of it no stoor. They had me yeven hir gold and hir tresoor; Me neded nat do lenger diligence To winne hir love, or doon hem reverence. They loved me so wel, by God above, That I ne tolde no deyntee of hir love! A wys womman wol sette hir ever in oon To gete hir love, ther as she hath noon. But sith I hadde hem hoolly in myn hond, And sith they hadde me yeven all hir lond, What sholde I taken hede hem for to plese, But it were for my profit and myn ese? I sette hem so a-werke, by my fey, That many a night they songen “weilawey!” The bacoun was nat fet for hem, I trowe, That som men han in Essex at Dunmowe. I governed hem so wel, after my lawe, That ech of hem ful blisful was and fawe To bringe me gaye thinges fro the fayre. They were ful glad whan I spak to hem fayre; For God it woot, I chidde hem spitously. “awnyAy, bcka to my rsyto. leWl, to ltel uyo eht uhtrt, of hte vfie ubnhassd htta I’ve ahd in my ieetmlif, hrete of meth erew ogdo emn, ubt two eewr ptryet abd. hTe ifrst rehte ewer the oogd snoe. ehyT rwee lal ihrc ubt oals vrye dlo. In catf, teyh rewe so old ttha heyt duloc lybare teg it up orf me. I’m eurs I dno’t dnee to go into leatdi! oGd help me, it emask me alhgu rbnrigmmeee hwo cmuh I aedm hmte rwko ofr esx chae thing! Teyh dah daryael vneig me htrei danl dna omyen and voel, ihhcw natem I nddi’t avhe to upt otu to etg nya of it! hTye leodv me so mchu taht it wsa uctlalay adrh to veol meht akbc. A sewi wmano lwil fscuo on lesaiunpgr the enm woh dno’t draaely levo her, tbu iencs my ashbdsnu ahd yardlea vigen me yenhgtvrei adlarye, I idnd’t btohre igngvi temh exaslu eprlsuae eunlss I asw niggo to teg eaerlusp uot of it oto. So I eadm htem kowr rhda eyver hting to espeal me, hcwhi fnteo made meht ighs in irnstraoutf. I dha each of htem epawrpd oanudr my litetl rfngei so hltigyt htat tyhe weer all too pphay to uby me neci tgnhis and jpmu for yjo ervnewhe I iasd ynnhtaig ceni to ehmt (ubeesac odG konsw I ddleocs mteh foent!).