Previous Previous:
From The Manciple's Tale, lines 262-270:
Phoebus kills his wife
Previous
Librarius Homepage
© Librarius
All rights reserved.



From The Canterbury Tales:
The Manciple's Tale
lines 271-291: Phoebus turns his rage against his crow


       "Traitour," quod he, "with tonge of scorpioun,
Thou hast me broght to my confusioun,
Allas, that I was wroght! Why nere I deed?
O deere wyf, O gemme of lustiheed,
275That were to me so sad and eek so trewe,
Now listow deed with face pale of hewe,
Ful giltelees, that dorste I swere, ywys.
O rakel hand, to doon so foule amys!
O trouble wit, O ire recchelees!
280That unavysed smyteth gilteles.
O wantrust, ful of fals suspecioun,
Where was thy wit and thy discrecioun?
O every man, be war of rakelnesse,
Ne trowe no thyng withouten strong witnesse.
285Smyt nat to soone, er that ye witen why,
And beeth avysed wel and sobrely,
Er ye doon any execucioun
Upon youre ire for suspecioun.
Allas, a thousand folk hath rakel ire
290Fully fordoon, and broght hem in the mire!
Allas, for sorwe I wol myselven slee!"
       "Traitor," cried he, "with tongue of scorpion,
You have brought me to ruin, treacherous one!
Alas, that I was born! Why died I not?
O my dear wife, jewel of joy, God wot,
275Who were to me so trusty and so true,
Now you lie dead, with face all pale of hue,
And you were guiltless, I dare swear to this!
O hasty hand, to do so foul amiss!
O stupid brain, O anger all reckless,
280That unadvisedly struck the guiltless!
O ill distrust that jealousy had sown!
Where were your thought and your discretion flown?
O every man, beware of hastiness,
Do not believe without a strong witness;
285Strike not too soon, before you reason why,
And be advised full well and soberly
Before you do any execution thus
In your wild anger when it is jealous.
Alas! A thousand folk has hasty ire
290Ruined, and left them bleeding in the mire.
Alas! I'll slay myself forthwith for grief!"




Next Next:
From The Manciple's Tale, lines 292-308:
The crow is turned black and is no longer able to sing
Next