Original Text: 
Gary Shawver, ed., in Using TACT and Electronic Texts: Text-Analysis Computing Tools Vers. 2.1 for MS-DOS and PC DOS, by I. Lancashire, in collaboration with J. Bradley, W. McCarty, M. Stairs, and T. R. Wooldridge (New York: Modern Language Association of America, 1996). CD-ROM.
1Pacience is a poynt, Þa3 hit displese ofte.
2When heuy herttes ben hurt wyth heÞyng oÞer elles,
3Suffraunce may aswag[en] hem & Þe swleme leÞe,
4For ho quelles vche a qued & quenches malyce;
5For quoso suffer cowÞe syt, sele wolde fol3e,
6& quo for Þro may no3t Þole, Þe Þikker he sufferes.
7Þen is better to abyde Þe bur vmbestoundes
8Þen ay Þrow forth my Þro, Þa3 me Þynk ylle.
9I herde on a halyday, at a hy3e masse,
10How Mathew melede Þat his Mayster His meyny con teche.
11A3t happes He hem hy3t & vcheon a mede,
12Sunderlupes, for hit dissert, vpon a ser wyse:
13Thay arn happen Þat han in hert pouerte,
14For hores is Þe heuen-ryche to holde for euer;
15Þay ar happen also Þat haunte mekenesse,
16For Þay schal welde Þis worlde & alle her wylle haue;
17Thay ar happen also Þat for her harme wepes,
18For Þay schal comfort encroche in kythes ful mony;
19Þay ar happen also Þat hungeres after ry3t,
20For Þay schal frely be refete ful of alle gode;
21Thay ar happen also Þat han in hert rauÞe,
22For mercy in alle maneres her mede schal worÞe;
23Þay ar happen also Þat arn of hert clene,
24For Þay her Sauyour in sete schal se with her y3en;
25Thay ar happen also Þat halden her pese,
26For Þay Þe gracious Godes sunes schal godly be called;
27Þay ar happen also Þat con her hert stere,
28For hores is Þe heuen-ryche, as I er sayde.
29These arn Þe happes alle a3t Þat vus bihy3t weren,
30If we Þyse ladyes wolde lof in lyknyng of Þewes:
31Dame Pouert, Dame Pitee, Dame Penaunce Þe Þrydde,
32Dame Mekenesse, Dame Mercy, & miry Clannesse,
33& Þenne Dame Pes, & Pacyence put in Þerafter.
34He were happen Þat hade one; alle were Þe better.
35Bot [s]yn I am put to a poynt Þat pouerte hatte,
36I schal me poruay pacyence & play me with boÞe,
37For in Þe tyxte Þere Þyse two arn in teme layde,
38Hit arn fettled in on forme, Þe forme & Þe laste,
39& by quest of her quoyntyse enquylen on mede.
40& als, in myn vpynyoun, hit arn of on kynde:
41For Þeras pouert hir proferes ho nyl be put vtter,
42Bot lenge wheresoeuer hir lyst, lyke oÞer greme;
43& Þereas pouert enpresses, Þa3 mon pyne Þynk,
44Much, maugre his mun, he mot nede suffer;
45Thus pouerte & pacyence arn nedes playferes.
46SyÞen I am sette with hem samen, suffer me byhoues;
47Þenne is me ly3tloker hit lyke & her lotes prayse,
48Þenne wyÞer wyth & be wroth & Þe wers haue.
493if me be dy3t a destyne due to haue,
50What dowes me Þe dedayn, oÞer dispit make?
51OÞer 3if my lege lorde lyst on lyue me to bidde
52OÞer to ryde oÞer to renne to Rome in his ernde,
53What grayÞed me Þe grychchyng bot grame more seche?
54Much 3if he me ne made, maugref my chekes,
55& Þenne Þrat moste I Þole & vnÞonk to mede,
56Þe had bowed to his bode bongre my hyure.
57Did not Jonas in Jude suche jape sumwhyle?
58To sette hym to sewrte, vnsounde he hym feches.
59Wyl 3e tary a lyttel tyne & tent me a whyle,
60I schal wysse yow Þerwyth as holy wryt telles.
61Hit bitydde sumtyme in Þe termes of Jude,
62Jonas joyned watz Þerinne Jentyle prophete;
63Goddes glam to hym glod Þat hym vnglad made,
64With a roghlych rurd rowned in his ere:
65'Rys radly,' He says, '& rayke forth euen;
66Nym Þe way to Nynyue wythouten oÞer speche,
67& in Þat cete My sa3es soghe alle aboute,
68Þat in Þat place, at Þe poynt, I put in Þi hert.
69For iwysse hit arn so wykke Þat in Þat won dowellez
70& her malys is so much, I may not abide,
71Bot venge Me on her vilanye & venym bilyue;
72Now swe3e Me Þider swyftly & say Me Þis arende.'
73When Þat steuen watz stynt Þat stown[e]d his mynde,
74Al he wrathed in his wyt, & wyÞerly he Þo3t:
75'If I bowe to His bode & bryng hem Þis tale,
76& I be nummen in Nuniue, my nyes begynes:
77He telles me Þose traytoures arn typped schrewes;
78I com wyth Þose tyÞynges, Þay ta me bylyue,
79Pynez me in a prysoun, put me in stokkes,
80WryÞe me in a warlok, wrast out myn y3en.
81Þis is a meruayl message a man for to preche
82Amonge enmyes so mony & mansed fendes,
83Bot if my gaynlych God such gref to me wolde,
84Fo[r] desert of sum sake Þat I slayn were.
85At alle peryles,' quoÞ Þe prophete, 'I aproche hit no nerre.
86I wyl me sum oÞer waye Þat He ne wayte after;
87I schal tee into Tarce & tary Þere a whyle,
88& ly3tly when I am lest He letes me alone.'
89Þenne he ryses radly & raykes bilyue,
90Jonas toward port Japh, ay janglande for tene
91Þat he nolde Þole for noÞyng non of Þose pynes,
92Þa3 Þe Fader Þat hym formed were fale of his hele.
93'Oure Syre syttes,' he says, 'on sege so hy3e
94In His g[lo]wande glorye, & gloumbes ful lyttel
95Þa3 I be nummen in Nunniue & naked dispoyled,
96On rode rwly torent with rybaudes mony.'
97Þus he passes to Þat port his passage to seche,
98Fyndes he a fayr schyp to Þe fare redy,
99Maches hym with Þe maryneres, makes her paye
100For to towe hym into Tarce as tyd as Þay my3t.
101Then he tron on Þo tres, & Þay her tramme ruchen,
102Cachen vp Þe crossayl, cables Þay fasten,
103Wi3t at Þe wyndas we3en her ankres,
104Spende spak to Þe sprete Þe spare bawelyne,
105Gederen to Þe gyde-ropes, Þe grete cloÞ falles,
106Þay layden in on laddeborde, & Þe lofe wynnes,
107Þe blyÞe breÞe at her bak Þe bosum he fyndes;
108He swenges me Þys swete schip swefte fro Þe hauen.
109Watz neuer so joyful a Jue as Jonas watz Þenne,
110Þat Þe daunger of Dry3tyn so derfly ascaped;
111He wende wel Þat Þat Wy3 Þat al Þe world planted
112Hade no ma3t in Þat mere no man for to greue.
113Lo, Þe wytles wrechche! For he wolde no3t suffer,
114Now hatz he put hym in plyt of peril wel more.
115Hit watz a wenyng vnwar Þat welt in his mynde,
116Þa3 he were so3t fro Samarye, Þat God se3 no fyrre.
1173ise, He blusched ful brode: Þat burde hym by sure;
118Þat ofte kyd hym Þe carpe Þat kyng sayde,
119Dyngne Dauid on des Þat demed Þis speche
120In a psalme Þat he set Þe sauter withinne:
121'O folez in folk, felez oÞerwhyle
122& vnderstondes vmbestounde, Þa3 he be stape fole,
123Hope 3e Þat He heres not Þat eres alle made?
124Hit may not be Þat He is blynde Þat bigged vche y3e.'
125Bot he dredes no dynt Þat dotes for elde.
126For he watz fer in Þe flod foundande to Tarce,
127Bot I trow ful tyd ouertan Þat he were,
128So Þat schomely to schort he schote of his ame.
129For Þe Welder of wyt Þat wot alle Þynges,
130Þat ay wakes & waytes, at wylle hatz He sly3tes.
131He calde on Þat ilk crafte He carf with His hondes;
132Þay wakened wel Þe wroÞeloker for wroÞely He cleped:
133'Ewrus & Aquiloun Þat on est sittes
134Blowes boÞe at My bode vpon blo watteres.'
135Þenne watz no tom Þer bytwene His tale & her dede,
136So bayn wer Þay boÞe two His bone for to wyrk.
137Anon out of Þe norÞ-est Þe noys bigynes,
138When boÞe breÞes con blowe vpon blo watteres.
139Ro3 rakkes Þer ros with rudnyng anvnder;
140Þe see sou3ed ful sore, gret selly to here;
141Þe wyndes on Þe wonne water so wrastel togeder
142Þat Þe wawes ful wode waltered so hi3e
143& efte busched to Þe abyme, Þat breed fysches
144Durst nowhere for ro3 arest at Þe bothem.
145When Þe breth & Þe brok & Þe bote metten,
146Hit watz a joyles gyn Þat Jonas watz inne,
147For hit reled on roun vpon Þe ro3e yÞes.
148Þe bur ber to hit baft, Þat braste alle her gere,
149Þen hurled on a hepe Þe helme & Þe sterne;
150Furst tomurte mony rop & Þe mast after;
151Þe sayl sweyed on Þe see, Þenne suppe bihoued
152Þe coge of Þe [co]lde water, & Þenne Þe cry ryses.
1533et coruen Þay Þe cordes & kest al Þeroute;
154Mony ladde Þer forth lep to laue & to kest,
155Scopen out Þe scaÞel water Þat fayn scape wolde,
156For be monnes lode neuer so luÞer, Þe lyf is ay swete.
157Þer watz busy ouer borde bale to kest,
158Her bagges & her feÞer-beddes & her bry3t wedes,
159Her kysttes & her coferes, her caraldes alle,
160& al to ly3ten Þat lome, 3if leÞe wolde schape.
161Bot euer watz ilyche loud Þe lot of Þe wyndes,
162& euer wroÞer Þe water & wodder Þe stremes.
163Þen Þo wery forwro3t wyst no bote,
164Bot vchon glewed on his god Þat gayned hym beste:
165Summe to Vernagu Þer vouched avowes solemne,
166Summe to Diana deuout & derf Nepturne,
167To Mahoun & to Mergot, Þe mone & Þe sunne,
168& vche lede as he loued & layde had his hert.
169Þenne bispeke Þe spakest, dispayred wel nere:
170'I leue here be sum losynger, sum lawles wrech,
171Þat hatz greued his god & gotz here amonge vus.
172Lo, al synkes in his synne & for his sake marres.
173I lovue Þat we lay lotes on ledes vchone,
174& whoso lympes Þe losse, lay hym Þeroute;
175& quen Þe gulty is gon, what may gome trawe
176Bot He Þat rules Þe rak may rwe on Þose oÞer?'
177Þis watz sette in asent, & sembled Þay were,
178Her3ed out of vche hyrne to hent Þat falles.
179A lodesmon ly3tly lep vnder hachches,
180For to layte mo ledes & hem to lote bryng.
181Bot hym fayled no freke Þat he fynde my3t,
182Saf Jonas Þe Jwe, Þat jowked in derne.
183He watz flowen for ferde of Þe flode lotes
184Into Þe boÞem of Þe bot, & on a brede lyggede,
185Onhelde by Þe hurrok, for Þe heuen wrache,
186Slypped vpon a sloumbe-selepe, & sloberande he routes.
187Þe freke hym frunt with his fot & bede hym ferk vp:
188Þer Ragnel in his rakentes hym rere of his dremes!
189Bi Þe haspede he hentes hym Þenne,
190& bro3t hym vp by Þe brest & vpon borde sette,
191Arayned hym ful runyschly what raysoun he hade
192In such sla3tes of sor3e to slepe so faste.
193Sone haf Þay her sortes sette & serelych deled,
194& ay Þe lote vpon laste lymped on Jonas.
195Þenne ascryed Þay hym sckete & asked ful loude:
196'What Þe deuel hatz Þou don, doted wrech?
197What seches Þou on see, synful schrewe,
198With Þy lastes so luÞer to lose vus vchone?
199Hatz Þou, gome, no gouernour ne god on to calle,
200Þat Þou Þus slydes on slepe when Þou slayn worÞes?
201Of what londe art Þou lent, what laytes Þou here,
202Whyder in worlde Þat Þou wylt, & what is Þyn arnde?
203Lo, Þy dom is Þe dy3t, for Þy dedes ille.
204Do gyf glory to Þy godde, er Þou glyde hens.'
205'I am an Ebru,' quoÞ he, 'of Israyl borne;
206Þat Wy3e I worchyp, iwysse, Þat wro3t alle Þynges,
207Alle Þe worlde with Þe welkyn, Þe wynde & Þe sternes,
208& alle Þat wonez Þer withinne, at a worde one.
209Alle Þis meschef for me is made at Þys tyme,
210For I haf greued my God & gulty am founden;
211ForÞy berez me to Þe borde & baÞeÞes me Þeroute,
212Er gete 3e no happe, I hope forsoÞe.'
213He ossed hym by vnnynges Þat Þay vndernomen
214Þat he watz flawen fro Þe face of frelych Dry3tyn:
215Þenne such a ferde on hem fel & flayed hem withinne
216Þat Þay ruyt hym to rowwe, & letten Þe rynk one.
217HaÞeles hy3ed in haste with ores ful longe,
218Syn her sayl watz hem aslypped, on sydez to rowe,
219Hef & hale vpon hy3t to helpen hymseluen,
220Bot al watz nedles note: Þat nolde not bityde.
221In bluber of Þe blo flod bursten her ores.
222Þenne hade Þay no3t in her honde Þat hem help my3t;
223Þenne nas no coumfort to keuer, ne counsel non oÞer,
224Bot Jonas into his juis jugge bylyue.
225Fryst Þay prayen to Þe Prynce Þat prophetes seruen
226Þat He gef hem Þe grace to greuen Hym neuer,
227Þat Þay in balelez blod Þer blenden her handez,
228Þa3 Þat haÞel wer His Þat Þay here quelled.
229Tyd by top & bi to Þay token hym synne;
230Into Þat lodlych lo3e Þay luche hym sone.
231He watz no tytter outtulde Þat tempest ne sessed:
232Þe se sa3tled Þerwith as sone as ho mo3t.
233Þenne Þa3 her takel were torne Þat totered on yÞes,
234Styffe stremes & stre3t hem strayned a whyle,
235Þat drof hem dry3lych adoun Þe depe to serue,
236Tyl a swetter ful swyÞe hem swe3ed to bonk.
237Þer watz louyng on lofte, when Þay Þe londe wonnen,
238To oure mercyable God, on Moyses wyse,
239With sacrafyse vpset, & solempne vowes,
240& graunted Hym vn to be God & graythly non oÞer.
241Þa3 Þay be jolef for joye, Jonas 3et dredes;
242Þa3 he nolde suffer no sore, his seele is on anter;
243For whatso worÞed of Þat wy3e fro he in water dipped,
244Hit were a wonder to wene, 3if holy wryt nere.
245Now is Jonas Þe Jwe jugged to drowne;
246Of Þat schended schyp men schowued hym sone.
247A wylde walterande whal, as Wyrde Þen schaped,
248Þat watz beten fro Þe abyme, bi Þat bot flotte,
249& watz war of Þat wy3e Þat Þe water so3te,
250& swyftely swenged hym to swepe, & his swol3 opened;
251Þe folk 3et haldande his fete, Þe fysch hym tyd hentes;
252Withouten towche of any tothe he tult in his Þrote.
253Thenne he swengez & swayues to Þe se boÞem,
254Bi mony rokkez ful ro3e & rydelande strondes,
255Wyth Þe mon in his mawe malskred in drede,
256As lyttel wonder hit watz, 3if he wo dre3ed,
257For nade Þe hy3e Heuen-Kyng, Þur3 His honde my3t,
258Warded Þis wrech man in warlowes guttez,
259What lede mo3t lyue bi lawe of any kynde,
260Þat any lyf my3t be lent so longe hym withinne?
261Bot he watz sokored by Þat Syre Þat syttes so hi3e,
262Þa3 were wanlez of wele in wombe of Þat fissche,
263& also dryuen Þur3 Þe depe & in derk walterez.
264Lorde, colde watz his cumfort, & his care huge,
265For he knew vche a cace & kark Þat hym lymped,
266How fro Þe bot into Þe blober watz with a best lachched,
267& Þrwe in at hit Þrote withouten Þret more,
268As mote in at a munster dor, so mukel wern his chawlez.
269He glydes in by Þe giles Þur3 glaym ande glette,
270Relande in by a rop, a rode Þat hym Þo3t,
271Ay hele ouer hed hourlande aboute,
272Til he blunt in a blok as brod as a halle;
273& Þer he festnes Þe fete & fathmez aboute,
274& stod vp in his stomak Þat stank as Þe deuel.
275Þer in saym & in sor3e Þat sauoured as helle,
276Þer watz bylded his bour Þat wyl no bale suffer.
277& Þenne he lurkkes & laytes where watz le best,
278In vche a nok of his nauel, bot nowhere he fyndez
279No rest ne recouerer, bot ramel ande myre,
280In wych gut so euer he gotz, bot euer is God swete;
281& Þer he lenged at Þe last, & to Þe Lede called:
282'Now, Prynce, of Þy prophete pite Þou haue.
283Þa3 I be fol & fykel & falce of my hert,
284Dewoyde now Þy vengaunce, Þur3 vertu of rauthe;
285Tha3 I be gulty of gyle, as gaule of prophetes,
286Þou art God, & alle gowdez ar grayÞely Þyn owen.
287Haf now mercy of Þy man & his mysdedes,
288& preue Þe ly3tly a Lorde in londe & in water.'
289With Þat he hitte to a hyrne & helde hym Þerinne,
290Þer no defoule of no fylÞe watz fest hym abute;
291Þer he sete also sounde, saf for merk one,
292As in Þe bulk of Þe bote Þer he byfore sleped.
293So in a bouel of Þat best he bidez on lyue,
294Þre dayes & Þ[r]e ny3t, ay Þenkande on Dry3tyn,
295His my3t & His merci, His mesure Þenne.
296Now he knawez Hym in care Þat couÞe not in sele.
297Ande euer walteres Þis whal bi wyldren depe,
298Þur3 mony a regioun ful ro3e, Þur3 ronk of his wylle;
299For Þat mote in his mawe mad hym, I trowe,
300Þa3 hit lyttel were hym wyth, to wamel at his hert;
301Ande as sayled Þe segge, ay sykerly he herde
302Þe bygge borne on his bak & bete on his sydes.
303Þen a prayer ful prest Þe prophete Þer maked;
304On Þis wyse, as I wene, his wordez were mony:
305'Lorde, to Þe haf I cleped in carez ful stronge;
306Out of Þe hole Þou me herde of hellen wombe;
307I calde, & Þou knew myn vncler steuen.
308Þou diptez me of Þe depe se into Þe dymme hert,
309Þe grete flem of Þy flod folded me vmbe;
310Alle Þe gotez of Þy guferes & groundelez powlez,
311& Þy stryuande stremez of stryndez so mony,
312In on daschande dam dryuez me ouer.
313& 3et I say as I seet in Þe se boÞem:
314"Careful am I, kest out fro Þy cler y3en
315& deseuered fro Þy sy3t; 3et surely I hope
316Efte to trede on Þy temple & teme to Þyseluen."
317I am wrapped in water to my wo stoundez;
318Þe abyme byndes Þe body Þat I byde inne;
319Þe pure poplande hourle playes on my heued;
320To laste mere of vche a mount, Man, am I fallen;
321Þe barrez of vche a bonk ful bigly me haldes,
322Þat I may lachche no lont, & Þou my lyf weldes.
323Þou schal releue me, Renk, whil Þy ry3t slepez,
324Þur3 my3t of Þy mercy Þat mukel is to tryste.
325For when Þ'acces of anguych watz hid in my sawle,
326Þenne I remembred me ry3t of my rych Lorde,
327Prayande Him for pete His prophete to here,
328Þat into His holy hous myn orisoun mo3t entre.
329I haf meled with Þy maystres mony longe day,
330Bot now I wot wyterly Þat Þose vnwyse ledes
331Þat affyen hym in vanyte & in vayne Þynges
332For Þink Þat mountes to no3t her mercy forsaken;
333Bot I dewoutly awowe, Þat verray betz halden,
334Soberly to do Þe sacrafyse when I schal saue worÞe,
335& offer Þe for my hele a ful hol gyfte,
336& halde goud Þat Þou me hetes: haf here my trauthe.'
337Thenne oure Fader to Þe fysch ferslych biddez
338Þat he hym sput spakly vpon spare drye.
339Þer whal wendez at His wylle & a warÞe fyndez,
340& Þer he brakez vp Þe buyrne as bede hym oure Lorde.
341Þenne he swepe to Þe sonde in sluchched cloÞes:
342Hit may wel be Þat mester were his mantyle to wasche.
343Þe bonk Þat he blosched to & bode hym bisyde
344Wern of Þe regiounes ry3t Þat he renayed hade.
345Þenne a wynde of Goddez worde efte Þe wy3e bruxlez:
346'Nylt Þou neuer to Nuniue bi no kynnez wayez?'
347'3isse, Lorde,' quoÞ Þe lede, 'lene me Þy grace
348For to go at Þi gre: me gaynez [n]on oÞer.'
349'Ris, aproche Þen to prech, lo, Þe place here.
350Lo, My lore is in Þe loke, lauce hit Þerinne.'
351Þenne Þe renk radly ros as he my3t,
352& to Niniue Þat na3t he ne3ed ful euen;
353Hit watz a cete ful syde & selly of brede;
354On to Þrenge ÞerÞur3e watz Þre dayes dede.
355Þat on journay ful joynt Jonas hym 3ede,
356Er euer he warpped any worde to wy3e Þat he mette,
357& Þenne he cryed so cler Þat kenne my3t alle
358Þe trwe tenor of his teme; he tolde on Þis wyse:
359'3et schal forty dayez fully fare to an ende,
360& Þenne schal Niniue be nomen & to no3t worÞe;
361Truly Þis ilk toun schal tylte to grounde;
362Vp-so-doun schal 3e dumpe depe to Þe abyme,
363To be swol3ed swyftly wyth Þe swart erÞe,
364& alle Þat lyuyes hereinne lose Þe swete.'
365Þis speche sprang in Þat space & spradde alle aboute,
366To borges & to bacheleres Þat in Þat bur3 lenged;
367Such a hidor hem hent & a hatel drede,
368Þat al chaunged her chere & chylled at Þe hert.
369Þe segge sesed not 3et, bot sayde euer ilyche:
370'Þe verray vengaunce of God schal voyde Þis place!'
371Þenne Þe peple pitosly pleyned ful stylle,
372& for Þe drede of Dry3tyn doured in hert;
373Heter hayrez Þay hent Þat asperly bited,
374& Þose Þay bounden to her bak & to her bare sydez,
375Dropped dust on her hede, & dymly biso3ten
376Þat Þat penaunce plesed Him Þat playnez on her wronge.
377& ay he cryes in Þat kyth tyl Þe kyng herde,
378& he radly vpros & ran fro his chayer,
379His ryche robe he torof of his rigge naked,
380& of a hep of askes he hitte in Þe myddez.
381He askez heterly a hayre & hasped hym vmbe,
382Sewed a sekke Þerabof, & syked ful colde;
383Þer he dased in Þat duste, with droppande teres,
384Wepande ful wonderly alle his wrange dedes.
385Þenne sayde he to his serjauntes: 'Samnes yow bilyue;
386Do dryue out a decre, demed of myseluen,
387Þat alle Þe bodyes Þat ben withinne Þis bor3 quyk,
388BoÞe burnes & bestes, burdez & childer,
389Vch prynce, vche prest, & prelates alle,
390Alle faste frely for her falce werkes;
391Sesez childer of her sok, soghe hem so neuer,
392Ne best bite on no brom, ne no bent nauÞer,
393Passe to no pasture, ne pike non erbes,
394Ne non oxe to no hay, ne no horse to water.
395Al schal crye, forclemmed, with alle oure clere strenÞe;
396Þe rurd schal ryse to Hym Þat rawÞe schal haue;
397What wote oÞer wyte may 3if Þe Wy3e lykes,
398Þat is hende in Þe hy3t of His gentryse?
399I wot His my3t is so much, Þa3 He be myssepayed,
400Þat in His mylde amesyng He mercy may fynde.
401& if we leuen Þe layk of oure layth synnes,
402& stylle steppen in Þe sty3e He sty3tlez Hymseluen,
403He wyl wende of His wodschip & His wrath leue,
404& forgif vus Þis gult, 3if we Hym God leuen.'
405Þenne al leued on His lawe & laften her synnes,
406Parformed alle Þe penaunce Þat Þe prynce radde;
407& God Þur3 His godnesse forgef as He sayde;
408Þa3 He oÞer bihy3t, withhelde His vengaunce.
409Muche sor3e Þenne satteled vpon segge Jonas;
410He wex as wroth as Þe wynde towarde oure Lorde.
411So hatz anger onhit his hert, [h]e callez
412A prayer to Þe hy3e Prynce, for pyne, on Þys wyse:
413'I biseche Þe, Syre, now Þou self jugge;
414Watz not Þis ilk my worde Þat worÞen is nouÞe,
415Þat I kest in my cuntre, when Þou Þy carp sendez
416Þat I schulde tee to Þys toun Þi talent to preche?
417Wel knew I Þi cortaysye, Þy quoynt soffraunce,
418Þy bounte of debonerte & Þy bene grace,
419Þy longe abydyng wyth lur, Þy late vengaunce;
420& ay Þy mercy is mete, be mysse neuer so huge.
421I wyst wel, when I hade worded quatsoeuer I cowÞe
422To manace alle Þise mody men Þat in Þis mote dowellez,
423Wyth a prayer & a pyne Þay my3t her pese gete,
424& Þerfore I wolde haf flowen fer into Tarce.
425Now, Lorde, lach out my lyf, hit lastes to longe.
426Bed me bilyue my bale-stour & bryng me on ende,
427For me were swetter to swelt as swyÞe, as me Þynk,
428Þen lede lenger Þi lore Þat Þus me les makez.'
429Þe soun of oure Souerayn Þen swey in his ere,
430Þat vpbraydes Þis burne vpon a breme wyse:
431'Herk, renk, is Þis ry3t so ronkly to wrath
432For any dede Þat I haf don oÞer demed Þe 3et?'
433Jonas al joyles & janglande vpryses,
434& haldez out on est half of Þe hy3e place,
435& farandely on a felde he fettelez hym to bide,
436For to wayte on Þat won what schulde worÞe after.
437Þer he busked hym a bour, Þe best Þat he my3t,
438Of hay & of euer-ferne & erbez a fewe,
439For hit watz playn in Þat place for plyande greuez,
440For to schylde fro Þe schene oÞer any schade keste.
441He bowed vnder his lyttel boÞe, his bak to Þe sunne,
442& Þer he swowed & slept sadly al ny3t,
443Þe whyle God of His grace ded growe of Þat soyle
444Þe fayrest bynde hym abof Þat euer burne wyste.
445When Þe dawande day Dry3tyn con sende,
446Þenne wakened Þe wy3 vnder wodbynde,
447Loked alofte on Þe lef Þat lylled grene;
448Such a lefsel of lof neuer lede hade,
449For hit watz brod at Þe boÞem, bo3ted on lofte,
450Happed vpon ayÞer half, a hous as hit were,
451A nos on Þe norÞ syde & nowhere non ellez,
452Bot al schet in a scha3e Þat schaded ful cole.
453Þe gome gly3t on Þe grene graciouse leues,
454Þat euer wayued a wynde so wyÞe & so cole;
455Þe schyre sunne hit vmbeschon, Þa3 no schafte my3t
456Þe mountaunce of a lyttel mote vpon Þat man schyne.
457Þenne watz Þe gome so glad of his gay logge,
458Lys loltrande Þerinne lokande to toune;
459So blyÞe of his wodbynde he balteres Þervnde[r],
460Þat of no diete Þat day Þe deuel haf he ro3t.
461& euer he la3ed as he loked Þe loge alle aboute,
462& wysched hit were in his kyth Þer he wony schulde,
463On he3e vpon Effraym oÞer Ermonnes hillez:
464'Iwysse, a worÞloker won to welde I neuer keped.'
465& quen hit ne3ed to na3t nappe hym bihoued;
466He slydez on a sloumbe-slep sloghe vnder leues,
467Whil God wayned a worme Þat wrot vpe Þe rote,
468& wyddered watz Þe wodbynde bi Þat Þe wy3e wakned;
469& syÞen He warnez Þe west to waken ful softe,
470& sayez vnte Zeferus Þat he syfle warme,
471Þat Þer quikken no cloude bifore Þe cler sunne,
472& ho schal busch vp ful brode & brenne as a candel.
473Þen wakened Þe wy3e of his wyl dremes,
474& blusched to his wodbynde Þat broÞely watz marred,
475Al welwed & wasted Þo worÞelych leues;
476Þe schyre sunne hade hem schent er euer Þe schalk wyst.
477& Þen hef vp Þe hete & heterly brenned;
478Þe warm wynde of Þe weste, wertes he swyÞez.
479Þe man marred on Þe molde Þat mo3t hym not hyde
480His wodbynde watz away, he weped for sor3e;
481With hatel anger & hot, heterly he callez:
482'A, Þou Maker of man, what maystery Þe Þynkez
483Þus Þy freke to forfare forbi alle oÞer?
484With alle meschef Þat Þou may, neuer Þou me sparez;
485I keuered me a cumfort Þat now is ca3t fro me,
486My wodbynde so wlonk Þat wered my heued.
487Bot now I se Þou art sette my solace to reue;
488Why ne dy3ttez Þou me to di3e? I dure to longe.'
4893et oure Lorde to Þe lede laused a speche:
490'Is Þis ry3twys, Þou renk, alle Þy ronk noyse,
491So wroth for a wodbynde to wax so sone?
492Why art Þou so waymot, wy3e, for so lyttel?'
493'Hit is not lyttel,' quoÞ Þe lede, 'bot lykker to ry3t;
494I wolde I were of Þis worlde wrapped in moldez.'
495'Þenne byÞenk Þe, mon, if Þe forÞynk sore,
496If I wolde help My hondewerk, haf Þou no wonder;
497Þou art waxen so wroth for Þy wodbynde,
498& trauayledez neuer to tent hit Þe tyme of an howre,
499Bot at a wap hit here wax & away at anoÞer,
500& 3et lykez Þe so luÞer, Þi lyf woldez Þou tyne.
501Þenne wyte not Me for Þe werk, Þat I hit wolde help,
502& rwe on Þo redles Þat remen for synne;
503Fyrst I made hem Myself of materes Myn one,
504& syÞen I loked hem ful longe & hem on lode hade.
505& if I My trauayl schulde tyne of termes so longe,
506& type doun 3onder toun when hit turned were,
507Þe sor of such a swete place burde synk to My hert,
508So mony malicious mon as mournez Þerinne.
509& of Þat soumme 3et arn summe, such sottez formadde,
510As lyttel barnez on barme Þat neuer bale wro3t,
511& wymmen vnwytte Þat wale ne couÞe
512Þat on hande fro Þat oÞer, fo[r] alle Þis hy3e worlde.
513Bitwene Þe stele & Þe stayre disserne no3t cunen,
514What rule renes in roun bitwene Þe ry3t hande
515& his lyfte, Þa3 his lyf schulde lost be Þerfor;
516& als Þer ben doumbe bestez in Þe bur3 mony,
517Þat may not synne in no syt hemseluen to greue.
518Why schulde I wrath wyth hem, syÞen wy3ez wyl torne,
519& cum & cnawe Me for Kyng & My carpe leue?
520Wer I as hastif a[s] Þou heere, were harme lumpen;
521CouÞe I not Þole bot as Þou, Þer Þryued ful fewe.
522I may not be so mal[i]cious & mylde be halden,
523For malyse is no3[t] to mayntyne boute mercy withinne.'
524Be no3t so gryndel, godman, bot go forth Þy wayes,
525Be preue & be pacient in payne & in joye;
526For he Þat is to rakel to renden his cloÞez
527Mot efte sitte with more vnsounde to sewe hem togeder.
528ForÞy when pouerte me enprecez & paynez inno3e
529Ful softly with suffraunce sa3ttel me bihouez;
530ForÞy penaunce & payne topreue hit in sy3t
531Þat pacience is a nobel poynt, Þa3 hit displese ofte.
Publication Start Year: 
Publication Notes: 
British Library Cotton Nero A.x, art. 3, ca. 1375?-1400?
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1998.