Previous Previous:
From The Merchant's Tale, lines 654-672:
Lovesick Damian writes a letter and puts it in his shirt pocket
Librarius Homepage
© Librarius
All rights reserved.

From The Canterbury Tales:
The Merchant's Tale
lines 673-693: January asks for Damian and hears he is sick

       The moone, that at noon was thilke day
That Januarie hath wedded fresshe May
675In two of Tawr, was into Cancre glyden;
So longe hath Mayus in hir chambre abyden,
As custume is unto thise nobles alle.
A bryde shal nat eten in the halle
Til dayes foure, or thre dayes atte leeste,
680Ypassed been; thanne lat hire go to feeste.
The fourthe day compleet fro noon to noon,
Whan that the heighe masse was ydoon,
In halle sit this Januarie and May,
As fressh as is the brighte someres day.
685And so bifel how that this goode man
Remembred hym upon this Damyan,
And seyde, "Seynte Marie! how may this be,
That Damyan entendeth nat to me?
Is he ay syk, or how may this bityde?"
690His squieres, whiche that stooden ther bisyde,
Excused hym by cause of his siknesse,
Which letted hym to doon his bisynesse;
Noon oother cause myghte make hym tarye.
       The moon, which was at noon of that same day
Whereon this January wedded May
675Half way through Taurus, had to Cancer glided,
So long had Maia in her chamber bided.
As is the custom among nobles all.
A bride shall not eat in the common hall
Until four days, or three days at the least,
680Have fully passed; then let her go to feast.
On the fourth day, complete from noon to noon,
After the high Mass had been said and done,
In hall did January sit with May
As fresh as is the fair bright summer day.
685And so befell it there that this good man
Recalled to mind his squire, this Damian,
And said: "Why holy Mary! How can it be
That Damian attends not here on me?
Is he sick always? How may this betide?"
690His other squires, who waited there beside,
Made the excuse that he indeed was ill,
Which kept him from his proper duties still;
There was no other cause could make him tarry.

Next Next:
From The Merchant's Tale, lines 694-719:
January orders Maia to cheer up Damian