The Book of the Knight of Latour-Landry

[How the Lady deals with a squire who offers her his love.]

The text is lightly glossed; see the glossary in the Riverside Chaucer for words not explained here.









Page 182

[The Knight of Latour speaks:]

"Lady, ye make me to be merveilled how that ye so
sore discounceille them to love. Wene ye to doo me to

Page 183
beleve that ye be so trewe in your spekinge, that ye never
were amorous? Certainly I have wel herd the complainte of
some, of whome ye hold wel your pees." "Sire, sayd the lady,
"I trowe that ye wold not beleve me if I told to you the very
trouthe therof; but as for to saye I have ben prayd of love,
I have many times perceived how somme men were aboute to
speke to me therof, but ever I brake their wordes, & called
to me somme other, wherby I did breke their faitte. Wherof
ones hit befelle, as many knightes and ladyes were playinge
with me, that a knight sayd to me how that he loved all the
ladyes that ben in this world. And I did demaunde and asked
him if hit was long syn that sekenes & eville had taken him.
& he answerd that it was wel ij yere gone and past, and
that never he durst telle it to me. I thenne answerd to him
that it was nothinge of that space of time, & that he hasted
him too moche, and that it was but a temptacion, & that he
shold goo to the chirche for to cast upon him holy water, and
that he shold saye his Aue Maria, & that his temptacion shold
sone after go fro him, For the love was newe. And he
demaunded of me why. And thenne I sayd to him that
none paramoure or lover ought not to saye to his lady that he
loveth her, till the time of seven yere and an half be
passed & gone, and that it was but a litell temptacion.
Thenne he wende to have argued, and put many reasons unto
me, whanne I sayd al on highe: `Behold ye all what sayth
this knight, whiche is but two yere syn he loved first one
lady! And thenne he prayd that I shold kepe my pees therof,
and that in good faithe he shold never speke to me therof."

From The Book of the Knight of La Tour-Landry, EETS o.s. 33, London, ed. Thomas Wright (from MS Harley 1764 and Caxton's Print) rev ed. 1903 [Widener 11472.33.3], corrected in few minor details.
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