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From The Prioress's Tale, lines 50-77:
A choir boy who worships Mary
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From The Canterbury Tales:
The Prioress's Tale
lines 78-98: The choir learns to sing Alma redemptoris


His felawe, which that elder was than he,
Answerde hym thus, "This song, I have herd seye,
80Was maked of oure blisful Lady free,
Hir to salue, and eek hir for to preye
To been our help, and socour whan we deye.
I kan namoore expounde in this mateere,
I lerne song, I kan but smal grammere."
His fellow was an older lad than he,
And answered thus: "This song, as I've heard say,
80Was made to praise Our Blessed Lady free,
Her to salute and ever her to pray
To be our help when comes our dying day.
I can expound to you only so far;
I've learned the song; I know but small grammar."

85        "And is this song maked in reverence
Of Cristes mooder?" seyde this innocent.
"Now, certes, I wol do my diligence
To konne it al, er Cristemasse is went;
Though that I for my prymer shal be shent
90And shal be beten thries in an houre,
I wol it konne, oure lady for to honoure."
85       "And is this song made in all reverence
Of Jesus' Mother?" asked this innocent;
"Now truly I will work with diligence
To learn it all before Christmas sacrament,
Though for my primer I take punishment
90And though I'm beaten thrice within the hour,
Yet will I learn it by Our Lady's power!"

His felawe taughte hym homward prively
Fro day to day, til he koude it by rote;
And thanne he song it wel and boldely
95Fro word to word acordynge with the note.
Twies a day it passed thurgh his throte,
To scoleward, and homward whan he wente;
On Cristes mooder set was his entente.
His fellow taught him on their homeward way
Until he learned the antiphon by rote.
Then clear and bold he sang it day by day,
95Each word according with its proper note;
And twice each day it welled from out his throat,
As schoolward went he and as homeward went;
On Jesus' Mother was his fixed intent.





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From The Prioress's Tale, lines 99-112:
The boy sings Alma redemptoris in the Jewish quarter
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