Previous Previous:
From The Franklin's Tale, lines 95-105:
The knight leaves his wife and goes on a campaign
Librarius Homepage
© Librarius
All rights reserved.

From The Canterbury Tales:
The Franklin's Tale
lines 106-138: Arviragus' wife Dorigen mourns after his departure

       Now wol I stynten of this Arveragus,
And speken I wole of Dorigene his wyf,
That loveth hir housbonde as hir hertes lyf.
For his absence wepeth she and siketh,
110As doon thise noble wyves whan hem liketh.
She moorneth, waketh, wayleth, fasteth, pleyneth,
Desir of his presence hir so destreyneth,
That al this wyde world she sette at noght,
Hir freendes whiche that knewe hir hevy thoght,
115Conforten hir in al that ever they may.
They prechen hir, they telle hir nyght and day
That causelees she sleeth hirself, allas!
And every confort possible in this cas
They doon to hir, with all hir bisynesse,
120Al for to make hir leve hir hevynesse.
       By proces, as ye knowen everichoon,
Men may so longe graven in a stoon,
Til som figure therinne emprented be.
So longe han they conforted hir, til she
125Receyved hath by hope and by resoun
The emprentyng of hir consolacioun,
Thurgh which hir grete sorwe gan aswage;
She may nat alwey duren in swich rage.
       Now will I hold from this Arviragus,
And I will speak of Dorigen his wife,
Who loved her husband as her heart's own life.
For all his absence wept she and she sighed,
110As noble wives do at a lone fireside.
She mourned, watched, wailed, she fasted and complained;
Desire for him so bound her and constrained,
That all this wide world did she set at naught.
Her friends, who knew her grief and heavy thought,
115Comforted her as they might do or say;
They preached to her, they told her night and day
That for no cause she killed herself, alas!
And every comfort possible in this pass
They gave to her, in all their busyness,
120To make her thus put by her heaviness.
       With passing time, as you know, every one,
Men may so long with tools engrave a stone
That thereon will some figure printed be.
And so long did they comfort her that she
125Received at last, by hope and reason grown,
Imprinted consolations as her own,
Whereby her sorrow did somewhat assuage;
She could not always live in such a rage.
       And eek Arveragus, in al this care,
130Hath sent hir lettres hoom of his welfare,
And that he wol com hastily agayn,
Or elles hadde this sorwe hir herte slayn.
       Hir freendes sawe hir sorwe gan to slake,
And preyde hir on knees, for Goddes sake,
135To com and romen hir in compaignye,
Awey to dryve hir derke fantasye.
And finally she graunted that requeste,
For wel she saugh that it was for the beste.
       And, then, Arviragus, through all her care,
130Had sent her letters home, of his welfare.
And that he would come speedily again;
Otherwise had this sorrow her heart slain.
       Her friends saw that her grief began to slake,
And prayed her on their knees, for dear God's sake,
135To come and wander in their company
And drive away her gloomy fantasy.
And finally she granted that request;
For well she saw that it was for the best.

Next Next:
From The Franklin's Tale, lines 139-192:
Dorigen's friends provide games and comfort