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From Troilus and Criseyde, Book IV, lines 1653-1701:
The day of their separation comes near
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Geoffrey Chaucer (1342 - 1400):
Troilus and Criseyde
Book V, lines 1-91: The exchange of Criseyde and Antenor


Incipit Liber Quintus.


Aprochen gan the fatal destinee
That Joves hath in disposicioun,
And to yow, angry Parcas, sustren thre,
Committeth, to don execucioun;
5For which Criseyde moste out of the toun,
And Troilus shal dwelle forth in pyne
Til Lachesis his threed no lenger twyne. --

The golden-tressed Phebus heighe on-lofte
Thryes hadde alle with his bemes shene
10The snowes molte, and Zephirus as ofte
Ybrought ayein the tendre leves grene,
Syn that the sone of Ecuba the quene
Bigan to love hir first, for whom his sorwe
Was al, that she departe sholde a-morwe.

15Ful redy was at pryme Dyomede,
Criseyde unto the Grekes oost to lede,
For sorwe of which she felt hir herte blede,
As she that niste what was best to rede.
And trewely, as men in bokes rede,
20Men wiste never womman han the care,
Ne was so looth out of a toun to fare.

This Troilus, withouten reed or lore,
As man that hath his joyes eek forlore,
Was waytinge on his lady ever-more
25As she that was the soothfast crop and more
Of al his lust, or joyes heretofore.
But Troilus, now farewel al thy joye,
For shaltow never seen hir eft in Troye!

Soth is, that whyl he bood in this manere,
30He gan his wo ful manly for to hyde.
That wel unnethe it seen was in his chere;
But at the yate ther she sholde oute ryde
With certeyn folk, he hoved hir tabyde,
So wo bigoon, al wolde he nought him pleyne,
35That on his hors unnethe he sat for peyne.

For ire he quook, so gan his herte gnawe,
Whan Diomede on horse gan him dresse,
And seyde unto himself this ilke sawe,
`Allas,' quod he, `thus foul a wrecchednesse
40Why suffre ich it, why nil ich it redresse?
Were it not bet atones for to dye
Than evermore in langour thus to drye?

`Why nil I make atones riche and pore
To have ynough to done, er that she go?
45Why nil I bringe al Troye upon a rore?
Why nil I sleen this Diomede also?
Why nil I rather with a man or two
Stele hir a-way? Why wol I this endure?
Why nil I helpen to myn owene cure?'

50But why he nolde doon so fel a dede,
That shal I seyn, and why him liste it spare;
He hadde in herte alweyes a maner drede,
Lest that Criseyde, in rumour of this fare,
Sholde han ben slayn; lo, this was al his care.
55And ellis, certeyn, as I seyde yore,
He hadde it doon, withouten wordes more.

Criseyde, whan she redy was to ryde,
Ful sorwfully she sighte, and seyde `Allas!'
But forth she moot, for ought that may bityde,
60And forth she rit ful sorwfully a pas.
Ther nis non other remedie in this cas.
What wonder is though that hir sore smerte,
Whan she forgoth hir owene swete herte?

This Troilus, in wyse of curteisye,
65With hauke on hond, and with an huge route
Of knightes, rood and dide hir companye,
Passinge al the valey fer withoute,
And ferther wolde han riden, out of doute,
Ful fayn, and wo was him to goon so sone;
70But torne he moste, and it was eek to done.

And right with that was Antenor ycome
Out of the Grekes oost, and every wight
Was of it glad, and seyde he was wel-come.
And Troilus, al nere his herte light,
75He peyned him with al his fulle might
Him to withholde of wepinge at the leste,
And Antenor he kiste, and made feste.

And therwithal he moste his leve take,
And caste his eye upon hir pitously,
80And neer he rood, his cause for to make,
To take hir by the honde al sobrely
And lord! So she gan wepen tendrely!
And he ful softe and sleighly gan hir seye,
`Now hold your day, and dooth me not to deye.'

85With that his courser torned he aboute
With face pale, and unto Diomede
No word he spak, ne noon of al his route;
Of which the sone of Tydeus took hede,
As he that koude more than the crede
90In swich a craft, and by the reyne hir hente;
And Troilus to Troye homwarde he wente.





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From Troilus and Criseyde, Book V, lines 92-175:
Diomedes offers his friendship to Criseyde
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