Previous Previous:
From Troilus and Criseyde, Book IV, lines 736-805:
Criseyde pities her situation
Previous
Librarius Homepage
© Librarius
All rights reserved.




Geoffrey Chaucer (1342 - 1400):
Troilus and Criseyde
Book IV, lines 806-945: Pandarus speaks with his niece Criseyde and asks her to hide her grief when she meets Troilus


Pandare, which that sent from Troilus
Was to Criseyde, as ye han herd devyse,
That for the beste it was accorded thus,
And he ful glad to doon him that servyse,
810Unto Criseyde, in a ful secree wyse,
Ther as she lay in torment and in rage,
Com hir to telle al hoolly his message,

And fond that she hirselven gan to trete
Ful pitously; for with hir salte teeris
815Hir brest, hir face, y-bathed was ful wete;
The mighty tresses of hir sonnish heeris,
Unbroyden, hangen al aboute hir eeris;
Which yaf him verray signal of martyre
Of deeth, which that hir herte gan desyre.

820Whan she him saw, she gan for sorwe anoon
Hir tery face a-twixe hir armes hide,
For which this Pandare is so wo bi-goon,
That in the hous he mighte unnethe abyde,
As he that pitee felte on every syde.
825For if Criseyde hadde erst compleyned sore,
Tho gan she pleyne a thousand tymes more.

And in hir aspre pleynte than she seyde,
`Pandare first of joyes mo than two
Was cause causinge unto me, Criseyde,
830That now transmuwed been in cruel wo.
Wher shal I seye to yow "wel come" or no,
That alderfirst me broughte into servyse
Of love, allas! That endeth in swich wyse?

`Endeth than love in wo? Ye, or men lyeth!
835And alle worldly blisse, as thinketh me.
The ende of blisse ay sorwe it occupyeth;
And whoso troweth not that it so be,
Lat him upon me, woful wrecche, y-see,
That myself hate, and ay my birthe acorse,
840Felinge alwey, fro wikke I go to worse.

`Who-so me seeth, he seeth sorwe al at ones,
Peyne, torment, pleynte, wo, distresse.
Out of my woful body harm ther noon is,
As anguish, langour, cruel bitternesse,
845A-noy, smert, drede, fury, and eek siknesse.
I trowe, ywis, from hevene teeris reyne,
For pitee of myn aspre and cruel peyne! '

`And thou, my suster, ful of discomfort,'
Quod Pandarus, `what thenkestow to do?
850Why ne hastow to thyselven som resport,
Why woltow thus thyselve, allas, for-do?
Leef al this werk and tak now hede to
That I shal seyn, and herkne, of good entente,
This, which by me thy Troilus thee sente.'

855Torned hir tho Criseyde, a wo makinge
So greet that it a deeth was for to see: --
`Allas!' quod she, `what wordes may ye bringe?
What wol my dere herte seyn to me,
Which that I drede never-mo to see?
860Wol he have pleynte or teeris, er I wende?
I have ynough, if he therafter sende!'

She was right swich to seen in hir visage
As is that wight that men on bere binde;
Hir face, lyk of Paradys the image,
865Was al ychaunged in another kinde.
The pleye, the laughtre men was wont to finde
On hir, and eek hir joyes everychone,
Ben fled, and thus lyth now Criseyde allone.

Aboute hir eyen two a purpre ring
870Bitrent, in sothfast tokninge of hir peyne,
That to biholde it was a dedly thing,
For which Pandare mighte not restreyne
The teeris from his eyen for to reyne.
But nathelees, as he best mighte, he seyde
875From Troilus thise wordes to Criseyde.

`Lo, nece, I trowe ye han herd al how
The king, with othere lordes, for the beste,
Hath mad eschaunge of Antenor and yow,
That cause is of this sorwe and this unreste.
880But how this cas doth Troilus moleste,
That may non erthely mannes tonge seye;
For verray wo his wit is al aweye.

`For which we han so sorwed, he and I,
That into litel bothe it hadde us slawe;
885But thurgh my conseil this day, fynally,
He somwhat is fro weping now withdrawe.
And semeth me that he desyreth fawe
With yow to been al night, for to devyse
Remede in this, if ther were any wyse.

890`This, short and pleyne, the effect of my message,
As ferforth as my wit can comprehende.
For ye, that been of torment in swich rage,
May to no long prologe as now entende;
And herupon ye may answere him sende.
895And, for the love of God, my nece dere,
So leef this wo er Troilus be here.'

`Gret is my wo,' quod she, and sighte sore,
As she that feleth dedly sharp distresse;
`But yet to me his sorwe is muchel more,
900That love him bet than he himself, I gesse.
Allas! For me hath he swich hevinesse?
Can he for me so pitously compleyne?
Y-wis, his sorwe doubleth al my peyne.

`Grevous to me, God woot, is for to twynne,'
905Quod she, `but yet it hardere is to me
To seen that sorwe which that he is inne;
For wel woot I, it wol my bane be;
And deye I wol in certayn,' tho quod she;
`But bidde him come, er deeth, that thus me threteth,
910Dryve out that goost which in myn herte beteth.'

Thise wordes seyd, she on hir armes two
Fil gruf, and gan to wepe pitously.
Quod Pandarus, `Allas! Why do ye so,
Syn wel ye woot the tyme is faste by,
915That he shal come? Arys up hastely,
That he yow nat biwopen thus ne finde,
But ye wol have him wood out of his minde!

`For wiste he that ye ferde in this manere,
He wolde himselve slee; and if I wende
920To han this fare, he sholde not come here
For al the good that Pryam may despende.
For to what fyn he wolde anoon pretende,
That knowe I wel; and forthy yet I seye,
So leef this sorwe, or platly he wol deye.

925`And shapeth yow his sorwe for to abregge,
And nought encresse, leve nece swete;
Beth rather to him cause of flat than egge,
And with som wysdom ye his sorwes bete.
What helpeth it to wepen ful a strete,
930Or though ye bothe in salte teeris dreynte
Bet is a tyme of cure ay than of pleynte.

`I mene thus; whan I him hider bringe,
Syn ye ben wyse, and bothe of oon assent,
So shapeth how distourbe your goinge,
935Or come ayen, sone after ye be went.
Wommen ben wyse in short avysement;
And lat sen how your wit shal now avayle;
And what that I may helpe, it shal not fayle.'

`Go,' quod Criseyde, `and uncle, trewely,
940I shal don al my might, me to restreyne
From weping in his sighte, and bisily,
Him for to glade, I shal don al my peyne,
And in myn herte seken every veyne;
If to this soor ther may be founden salve,
945It shal not lakken, certain, on myn halve.'





Next Next:
From Troilus and Criseyde, Book IV, lines 946-1127:
Pandarus urges Troilus to forget Criseyde
Next