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This text has been made available through the Oxford Text Archive for personal scholarly use only.
OTA number: U-1350-A
Electronic version based on:
A. C. Cawley
xxxviii, 47 p. : facsim. 20 cm.
Manchester University Press
Series: Old and Middle English texts; 1
The preface, table of contents, introduction, bibliography, alternate readings, and notes
found in the print edition are not included.
The text of Everyman has been divided into acts
and scenes not included in the print edition by Ian Lancashire.
EVERYMAN Here begynneth a treatyse how the hye
Fader of heuen sendeth Dethe to
somon euery creature to come and
gyue a-counte of theyr lyues in
this worlde / and is in maner
of a morall playe.
1 I pray you all gyue your audyence,
2 And here this mater with reuerence,
3 By fygure a morall playe.
4 The Somonynge of Eueryman called it is,
5 That of our lyues and endynge shewes
6 How transytory we be all daye.
7 This mater is wonders precyous;
8 But the entent of it is more gracyous,
9 And swete to bere awaye.
10 The story sayth: Man, in the begynnynge
11 Loke well, and take good heed to the endynge,
12 Be you neuer so gay!
13 Ye thynke synne in the begynnynge full swete,
14 Whiche in the ende causeth the soule to wepe,
15 Whan the body lyeth in claye.
16 Here shall you se how Felawshyp / and Iolyte,
17 Bothe / Strengthe / Pleasure / and Beaute,
18 Wyll fade from the as floure in Maye;
19 For ye shall here how our Heuen Kynge
20 Calleth Eueryman to a generall rekenynge.
21 Gyue audyence, and here what he doth saye.
Scene 2God speketh.
22 I perceyue, here in my maieste,
23 How that all creatures be to me vnkynde,
24 Lyuynge without drede in worldly prosperyte.
25 Of ghostly syght the people be so blynde,
26 Drowned in synne, they know me not for theyr God.
27 In worldely ryches is all theyr mynde;
28 They fere not my ryghtwysnes, the sharpe rod.
29 My lawe that I shewed, whan I for them dyed,
30 They forget clene / and shedynge of my blode rede.
31 I hanged bytwene two theues, it can not be denyed;
32 To gete them lyfe I suffred to be deed;
33 I heled theyr fete / with thornes hurt was my heed.
34 I coude do no more than I dyde, truely;
35 And nowe I se the people do clene for-sake me.
36 They vse the seuen deedly synnes dampnable,
37 As pryde, coueytyse, wrath, and lechery
38 Now in the worlde be made commendable;
39 And thus they leue of aungelles the heuenly company.
40 Euery man lyueth so after his owne pleasure,
41 And yet of theyr lyfe they be nothynge sure.
42 I se the more that I them forbere
43 The worse they be fro yere to yere.
44 All that lyueth appayreth faste;
45 Therefore I wyll, in all the haste,
46 Haue a rekenynge of euery mannes persone;
47 For, and I leue the people thus alone
48 In theyr lyfe and wycked tempestes,
49 Veryly they will become moche worse than beestes,
50 For now one wolde by enuy another vp ete;
51 Charyte they do all clene forgete.
52 I hoped well that euery man
53 In my glory sholde make his mansyon,
54 And therto I had them all electe;
55 But now I se, lyke traytours deiecte,
56 They thanke me not for the pleasure that I to them ment,
57 Nor yet for theyr beynge that I them haue lent.
58 I profered the people grete multytude of mercy,
59 And fewe there be that asketh it hertly.
60 They be so combred with worldly ryches
61 That nedes on them I must do iustyce,
62 On euery man lyuynge without fere.
63 Where arte thou, Deth, thou myghty messengere?
64 Almyghty God, I am here at your wyll,
65 Your commaundement to fulfyll.
66 Go thou to Eueryman
67 And shewe hym, in my name,
68 A pylgrymage he must on hym take,
69 Whiche he in no wyse may escape;
70 And that he brynge with hym a sure rekenynge
71 Without delay or ony taryenge.
72 Lorde, I wyll in the worlde go renne ouer-all
73 And cruelly out-serche both grete and small.
74 Euery man wyll I beset that lyueth beestly
75 Out of Goddes lawes, and dredeth not foly.
76 He that loueth rychess I wyll stryke with my darte,
77 His syght to blynde, and fro heuen to departe--
78 Excepte that almes be his good frende--
79 In hell for to dwell, worlde without ende.
80 Loo, yonder I se Eueryman walkynge.
81 Full lytell he thynketh on my comynge;
82 His mynde is on flesshely lustes and his treasure,
83 And grete payne it shall cause hym to endure
84 Before the Lorde, Heuen Kynge.
85 Eueryman, stande styll! Whyder arte thou goynge
86 Thus gayly? / Hast thou thy Maker forgete?
87 Why askest thou?
88 Woldest thou wete?
89 Ye, syr. I wyll shewe you:
90 In grete hast I am sende to the
91 Fro God out of his mageste.
92 What, sente to me?
93 Ye, certaynly.
94 Thoughe thou haue forgete hym here,
95 He thynketh on the in the heuenly spere,
96 As, or we departe, thou shalte knowe.
97 What desyreth God of me?
98 That shall I shewe the:
99 A rekenynge he wyll nedes haue
100 Without ony lenger respyte.
101 To gyue a rekenynge longer layser I craue;
102 This blynde mater troubleth my wytte.
103 On the thou must take a long iourney;
104 Therfore thy boke of counte with the thou brynge,
105 For tourne agayne thou can not by no waye.
106 And loke thou be sure of thy rekenynge,
107 For before God thou shalte answere, and shewe
108 Thy many badde dedes, and good but a fewe;
109 How thou hast spente thy lyfe, and in what wyse,
110 Before the chefe Lorde of paradyse.
111 Haue ado that thou were in that waye,
112 For wete thou well thou shalte make none attournay.
113 Full vnredy I am suche rekenynge to gyue.
114 I knowe the not. What messenger arte thou?
115 I am Dethe that no man dredeth--
116 For euery man I reste -- and no man spareth;
117 For it is Goddes commaundement
118 That all to me sholde be obedyent.
119 O Deth, thou comest whan I had the leest in mynde!
120 In thy power it lyeth me to saue;
121 Yet of my good wyl I gyue the, yf thou wyl be kynde --
122 Ye, a thousande pounde shalte thou haue --
123 And dyfferre this mater tyll an other daye.
124 Eueryman, it may not be by no waye.
125 I set not by golde, syluer, nor rychesse,
126 Ne by pope / emperour / kynge / duke, ne prynces;
127 For, and I wolde receyue gyftes grete,
128 All the worlde I myght gete;
129 But my custome is clene contrary.
130 I gyue the no respyte. Come hens, and not tary!
131 Alas, shall I haue no lenger respyte?
132 I may saye Deth gyueth no warnynge!
133 To thynke on the, it maketh my herte seke,
134 For all vnredy is my boke of rekenynge.
135 But xii. yere and I myght haue a-bydynge,
136 My countynge-boke I wolde make so clere
137 That my rekenynge I sholde not nede to fere.
138 Wherfore, Deth, I praye the, for Goddes mercy,
139 Spare me tyll I be prouyded of remedy.
140 The auayleth not to crye, wepe, and praye;
141 But hast the lyghtly that thou were gone that iournaye,
142 And preue thy frendes yf thou can.
143 For wete thou well the tyde abydeth no man,
144 And in the worlde eche lyuynge creature
145 For Adams synne must dye of nature.
146 Dethe, yf I sholde this pylgrymage take,
147 And my rekenynge suerly make,
148 Shewe me, for saynt charyte,
149 Sholde I not come agayne shortly?
150 No, Eueryman; and thou be ones there,
151 Thou mayst neuer more come here,
152 Trust me veryly.
153 O gracyous God in the hye sete celestyall,
154 Haue mercy on me in this moost nede!
155 Shall I haue no company fro this vale terestryall
156 Of myne acqueyntaunce, that way me to lede?
157 Ye, yf ony be so hardy
158 That wolde go with the and bere the company.
159 Hye the that thou were gone to Goddes magnyfycence,
160 Thy rekenynge to gyue before his presence.
161 What, wenest thou thy lyue is gyuen the,
162 And thy worldely gooddes also?
163 I had wende so, veryle.
164 Nay, nay, it was but lende the;
165 For as soone as thou arte go,
166 Another a whyle shall haue it, and than go ther-fro,
167 Euen as thou hast done.
168 Eueryman, thou arte made! Thou hast thy wyttes fyue,
169 And here on erthe wyll not amende thy lyue;
170 For sodeynly I do come.
171 O wretched caytyfe, wheder shall I flee,
172 That I myght scape this endles sorowe?
173 Now, gentyll Deth, spare me tyll to-morowe,
174 That I may amende me
175 With good aduysement.
176 Naye, therto I wyll not consent,
177 Nor no man wyll I respyte;
178 But to the herte sodeynly I shall smyte
179 Without ony aduysement.
180 And now out of thy syght I wyll me hy.
181 Se thou make the redy shortely,
182 For thou mayst saye this is the daye
183 That no man lyuynge may scape a-way.
184 Alas, I may well wepe with syghes depe!
185 Now haue I no maner of company
186 To help me in my iourney, and me to kepe;
187 And also my wrytynge is full vnredy.
188 How shall I do now for to exscuse me?
189 I wolde to God I had neuer be gete!
190 To my soule a full grete profyte it had be,
191 For now I fere paynes huge and grete.
192 The tyme passeth. Lorde, helpe, that all wrought!
193 For though I mourne, it auayleth nought.
194 The day passeth and is almoost ago;
195 I wote not well what for to do.
196 To whome were I best my complaynt to make?
197 What and I to Felawshyp therof spake,
198 And shewed hym of this sodeyne chaunce?
199 For in hym is all muyne affyaunce;
200 We haue in the worlde so many a daye
201 Be good frendes in sporte and playe.
202 I se hym yonder, certaynely.
203 I trust that he wyll bere me company;
204 Therfore to hym wyll I speke to ese my sorowe.
205 Well mette, Good Felawshyp, and good morowe! Felawshyp speketh.
206 Eueryman, good morowe, by this daye!
207 Syr, why lokest thou so pyteously?
208 If ony thynge be a-mysse, I praye the me saye,
209 That I may helpe to remedy.
210 Ye, good Felawshyp, ye,
211 I am in greate ieoparde.
212 My true frende, shewe to me your mynde.
213 I wyll not forsake the to my lyues ende,
214 In the waye of good company.
215 That was well spoken and louyngly.
216 Syr, I must nedes knowe your heuynesse;
217 I haue pyte to se you in ony dystresse.
218 If ony haue you wronged, ye shall reuenged be,
219 Thoughe I on the grounde be slayne for the,
220 Though that I knowe before that I sholde dye.
221 Veryly, Felawshyp, gramercy.
222 Tusshe! by thy thankes I set not a strawe.
223 Shewe me your grefe, and saye no more.
224 If I my herte sholde to you breke,
225 And than you to tourne your mynde fro me
226 And wolde not me comforte whan ye here me speke,
227 Than sholde I ten tymes soryer be.
228 Syr, I saye as I wyll do in dede.
229 Than be you a good frende at nede.
230 I haue founde you true here-before.
231 And so ye shall euermore;
232 For, in fayth, and thou go to hell,
233 I wyll not forsake the by the waye.
234 Ye speke lyke a good frende; I byleue you well
235 I shall deserue it, and I maye.
236 I speke of no deseruynge, by this daye!
237 For he that wyll saye, and nothynge do,
238 Is not worthy with good company to go;
239 Therfore shewe me the grefe of your mynde,
240 As to your frende moost louynge and kynde.
241 I shall shewe you how it is:
242 Commaunded I am to go a iournaye,
243 A longe waye harde and daungerous,
244 And gyue a strayte counte, without delaye,
245 Before the hye Iuge, Adonay.
246 Wherfore, I pray you, bere me company,
247 As ye haue promysed, in this iournaye.
248 That is mater in dede! Promyse is duty;
249 But, and I sholde take suche a vyage on me,
250 I knowe it well, it sholde be to my payne;
251 Also it maketh me aferde, certayne.
252 But let vs take counsell here as well as we can,
253 For your wordes wolde fere a stronge man.
254 Why, ye sayd yf I had nede
255 Ye wolde me neuer forsake, quycke ne deed,
256 Thoughe it were to hell, truely.
257 So I sayd, certaynely,
258 But suche pleasures be set a-syde, the sothe to saye;
259 And also, yf we toke suche a iournaye,
260 Whan sholde we agayne come?
261 Naye, neuer agayne tyll the daye of dome.
262 In fayth, than wyll not I come there!
263 Who hath you these tydynges brought?
264 In dede, Deth was with me here.
265 Now, by God that all hathe bought,
266 If Deth were the messenger,
267 For no man that is lyuynge to-daye
268 I wyll not go that lothe iournaye --
269 Not for the fader that bygate me!
270 Ye promysed other wyse, parde.
271 I wote well I sayd so, truely;
272 And yet, yf thou wylte ete & drynke & make good chere,
273 Or haunt to women the lusty company,
274 I wolde not forsake you whyle the daye is clere,
275 Trust me veryly.
276 Ye, therto ye wolde be redy!
277 To go to myrthe, solas, and playe
278 Your mynde wyll soner apply,
279 Than to bere me company in my longe iournaye.
280 Now, in good fayth, I wyll not that waye;
281 But and thou wyll murder, or ony man kyll,
282 In that I wyll helpe the with a good wyll.
283 O, that is a symple aduyse in dede.
284 Gentyll felawe, helpe me in my necessyte!
285 We haue loued longe, and now I nede;
286 And now, gentyll Felawshyp, remembre me.
287 Wheder ye haue loued me or no,
288 By Saynt Iohan I wyll not with the go!
289 Yet, I pray the, take the labour & do so moche for me
290 To brynge me forwarde, for saynt charyte,
291 And comforte me tyll I come without the towne.
292 Nay, and thou wolde gyue me a newe gowne,
293 I wyll not a fote with the go;
294 But, and thou had taryed, I wolde not haue lefte the so.
295 And as now God spede the in thy iournaye,
296 For from the I wyll departe as fast as I maye.
297 Wheder a-waye, Felawshyp? Wyll thou forsake me?
298 Ye, by my faye! To God I be-take the.
299 Farewell, good Felawshyp! For the my herte is sore.
300 A-dewe for euer! I shall se the no more.
301 In fayth, Eueryman, fare well now at the endynge!
302 For you I wyll remembre that partynge is mournynge.
303 A-lacke, shall wee thus departe in ded --
304 A, Lady, helpe! -- without ony more comforte?
305 Lo, Felawshyp forsaketh me in my moost nede.
306 For helpe in this worlde wheder shall I resorte?
307 Felawshyp here-before with me wolde mery make,
308 And now lytell sorowe for me dooth he take.
309 It is sayd, 'In prosperyte men frendes may fynde,
310 Whiche in aduersyte be full vnkynde.'
311 Now wheder for socoure shall I flee,
312 Syth that Felawshyp hath forsaken me?
313 To my kynnesmen I wyll, truely,
314 Prayenge them to helpe me in my necessyte.
315 I byleue that they wyll do so,
316 For kynde wyll crepe where it may not go.
317 I wyll go saye, for yonder I se them.
318 Where be ye now, my frendes and kynnesmen?
319 Here be we now at your commaundement.
320 Cosyn, I praye you shewe vs your entent
321 In ony wyse, and not spare.
322 Ye, Eueryman, and to vs declare
323 If ye be dysposed to go ony-whyder;
324 For, wete you well, we wyll lyue and dye to-gyder.
325 In welth and wo we wyll with you holde,
326 For ouer his kynne a man may be bolde.
327 Gramercy, my frendes and kynnesmen kynde.
328 Now shall I shewe you the grefe of my mynde:
329 I was commaunded by a messenger,
330 That is a hye kynges chefe offycer.
331 He bad me go a pylgrymage, to my payne,
332 And I knowe well I shall neuer come agayne.
333 Also I must gyue a rekenynge strayte,
334 For I haue a grete enemy that hath me in wayte,
335 Whiche entendeth me for to hynder.
336 What a-counte is that whiche ye must render?
337 That wolde I knowe.
338 Of all my workes I must shewe
339 How I haue lyued and my dayes spent;
340 Also of yll dedes that I haue vsed
341 In my tyme, syth lyfe was me lent;
342 And of all vertues that I haue refused.
343 Therfore, I praye you, go thyder with me
344 To helpe to make myn accounte, for saynt charyte.
345 What, to go thyder? Is that the mater?
346 Nay, Eueryman, I had leuer fast brede and water
347 All this fyue yere and more.
348 Alas, that euer I was bore!
349 For now shall I neuer be mery,
350 If that you forsake me.
351 A, syr, what ye be a mery man!
352 Take good herte to you, and make no mone.
353 But one thynge I warne you, by Saynt Anne --
354 As for me, ye shall go alone.
355 My Cosyn, wyll you not with me go?
356 No, by our Lady! I haue the crampe in my to.
357 Trust not to me; for, so God me spede,
358 I wyll deceyue you in your moost nede.
359 It auayleth not vs to tyse.
360 Ye shall haue my mayde with all my herte;
361 She loueth to go to feestes, there to be nyse,
362 And to daunce, and a-brode to sterte.
363 I wyll gyue her leue to helpe you in that iourney,
364 If that you and she may a-gree.
365 Now shewe me the very effecte of your mynde:
366 Wyll you go with me, or abyde be-hynde?
367 Abyde behynde? / Ye, that wyll I, and I maye!
368 Therfore farewell tyll another daye.
369 Howe sholde I be mery or gladde?
370 For fayre promyses men to me make,
371 But whan I haue moost nede they me forsake.
372 I am deceyued; that maketh me sadde.
373 Cosyn Eueryman, farewell now,
374 For veryly I wyll not go with you.
375 Also of myne owne an vnredy rekenynge
376 I haue to accounte; therfore I make taryenge.
377 Now God kepe the, for now I go.
378 A, Iesus, is all come here-to?
379 Lo, fayre wordes maketh fooles fayne;
380 They promyse, and nothynge wyll do, certayne.
381 My kynnesmen promysed me faythfully
382 For to a-byde with me stedfastly,
383 And now fast a-waye do they flee.
384 Euen so Felawshyp promysed me.
385 What frende were best me of to prouyde?
386 I lose my tyme here longer to abyde.
387 Yet in my mynde a thynge there is:
388 All my lyfe I haue loued ryches;
389 If that my Good now helpe my myght,
390 He wolde make my herte full lyght.
391 I wyll speke to hym in this dystresse.
392 Where arte thou, my Gooddes and ryches?
393 Who calleth me? Eueryman? / What, hast thou haste?
394 I lye here in corners, trussed and pyled so hye,
395 And in chestes I am locked so fast,
396 Also sacked in bagges. Thou mayst se with thyn eye
397 I can not styre; in packes, lowe I lye.
398 What wolde ye haue? Lyghtly me saye.
399 Come hyder, Good, in al the hast thou may,
400 For of counseyll I must desyre the.
401 Syre, & ye in the worlde haue sorowe or aduersyte,
402 That can I helpe you to remedy shortly.
403 It is another dysease that greueth me;
404 In this worlde it is not, I tell the so.
405 I am sent for, an other way to go,
406 To gyue a strayte counte generall
407 Before the hyest Iupyter of all.
408 And all my lyfe I haue had ioye & pleasure in the,
409 Therfore, I pray the, go with me;
410 For parauenture, thou mayst before God Almyghty
411 My rekenynge helpe to clene and puryfye,
412 For it is sayd euer amonge
413 That 'money maketh all ryght that is wronge.'
414 Nay, Eueryman, I synge an other songe.
415 I folowe no man in suche vyages;
416 For, and I wente with the,
417 Thou sholdest fare moche the worse for me.
418 For bycause on me thou dyd set thy mynde,
419 Thy rekenynge I haue made blotted and blynde,
420 That thyne accounte thou can not make truly --
421 And that hast thou for the loue of me!
422 That wolde greue me full sore,
423 Whan I sholde come to that ferefull answere.
424 Vp, let vs go thyder to-gyder.
425 Nay, not so! I am to brytell, I may not endure.
426 I wyll folowe no man one fote, be ye sure.
427 Alas, I haue the loued, and had grete pleasure
428 All my lyfe-dayes on good and treasure.
429 That is to thy dampnacyon, without lesynge,
430 For my loue is contrary to the loue euerlastynge.
431 But yf thou had me loued moderately durynge,
432 As to the poore gyue parte of me,
433 Than sholdest thou not in this dolour be,
434 Nor in this grete sorowe and care.
435 Lo, now was I deceyued or I was ware;
436 And all I may wyte my spendynge of tyme.
437 What, wenest thou that I am thyne?
438 I had went so.
439 Naye, Eueryman, I saye no.
440 As for a whyle I was lente the;
441 A season thou hast had me in prosperyte.
442 My condycyon is mannes soule to kyll;
443 If I saue one, a thousande I do spyll.
444 Wenest thou that I wyll folowe the?
445 Nay, fro this worlde not, veryle.
446 I had wende otherwyse.
447 Therfore to thy soule Good is a thefe;
448 For whan thou arte deed, this is my gyse --
449 Another to deceyue in this same wyse
450 As I haue done the, and all to his soules reprefe.
451 O false Good, cursed thou be,
452 Thou traytour to God, that hast deceyued me
453 And caught me in thy snare!
454 Mary, thou brought thy selfe in care,
455 Wherof I am gladde.
456 I must nedes laugh; I can not be sadde.
457 A, Good, thou hast had longe my hertely loue;
458 I gaue the that whiche sholde be the Lordes aboue.
459 But wylte thou not go with me in dede?
460 I praye the trouth to saye.
461 No, so God me spede!
462 Therfore fare well, and haue good daye.
463 O, to whome shall I make my mone
464 For to go with me in that heuy iournaye?
465 Fyrst Felawshyp sayd he wolde with me gone;
466 His wordes were very pleasaunt and gaye,
467 But afterwarde he lefte me alone.
468 Than spake I to my kynnesmen, all in dyspayre,
469 And also they gaue me wordes fayre;
470 They lacked no fayre spekynge,
471 But all forsake me in the endynge.
472 Than wente I to my Goodes that I loued best,
473 In hope to haue comforte; but there had I leest,
474 For my Goodes sharpely dyd me tell
475 That he bryngeth many in to hell.
476 Than of my selfe I was ashamed,
477 And so I am worthy to be blamed;
478 Thus may I well my selfe hate.
479 Of whome shall I now counseyll take?
480 I thynke that I shall neuer spede
481 Tyll that I go to my Good Dede.
482 But, alas, she is so weke
483 That she can nother go nor speke;
484 Yet wyll I venter on her now.
485 My Good Dedes, where be you?
486 Here I lye, colde in the grounde.
487 Thy synnes hath me sore bounde,
488 That I can not stere.
489 O Good Dedes, I stande in fere!
490 I must you pray of counseyll,
491 For help now sholde come ryght well.
492 Eueryman, I haue vnderstandynge
493 That ye be somoned a-counte to make
494 Before Myssyas, of Iherusalem kynge;
495 And you do by me, that iournay with you wyll I take.
496 Therfore I come to you my moone to make.
497 I praye you that ye wyll go with me.
498 I wolde full fayne, but I can not stande, veryly.
499 Why, is there ony thynge on you fall?
500 Ye, syr, I may thanke you of all.
501 If ye had parfytely chered me,
502 Your boke of counte full redy had be.
503 Loke, the bokes of your workes and dedes eke
504 Ase how they lye vnder the fete,
505 To your soules heuynes.
506 Our Lorde Iesus help me!
507 For one letter here I can not se.
508 There is a blynde rekenynge in tyme of dystres.
509 Good Dedes, I praye you helpe me in this nede,
510 Or elles I am for euer dampned in dede;
511 Therfore helpe me to make rekenynge
512 Before the Redemer of all thynge,
513 That Kynge is, and was, and euer shall.
514 Eueryman, I am sory of your fall,
515 And fayne wolde I help you, and I were able.
516 Good Dedes, your counseyll I pray you gyue me.
517 That shall I do veryly.
518 Thoughe that on my fete I may not go,
519 I haue a syster that shall with you also,
520 Called Knowlege, whiche shall with you abyde,
521 To helpe you to make that dredefull rekenynge.
522 Eueryman, I wyll go with the and be thy gyde,
523 In they moost nede to go by thy syde.
524 In good condycyon I am now in euery thynge,
525 And am holy content with this good thynge,
526 Thanked be God my creature.
527 And whan she hath brought you there
528 Where thou shalte hele the of thy smarte,
529 Than go you with your rekenynge & your Good Dedes togyder,
530 For to make you ioyfull at herte
531 Before the Blessyd Trynyte.
532 My Good Dedes, gramercy!
533 I am well content, certaynly,
534 With your wordes swete.
535 Now go we togyder louyngly
536 To Confessyon, that clensynge ryuere.
537 For ioy I wepe; I wolde we were there!
538 But, I pray you, gyue me cognycyon
539 Where dwelleth that holy man, Confessyon.
540 In the house of saluacyon;
541 We shall fynde hym in that place,
542 That shall vs comforte, by Goddes grace.
543 Lo, this is Confessyon. Knele downe & aske mercy,
544 For he is in good conceyte with God Almyghty.
545 O gloryous fountayne, that all vnclennes doth claryfy,
546 Wasshe fro me the spottes of vyce vnclene,
547 That on me no synne may be sene.
548 I come with Knowlege for my redempcyon,
549 Redempte with herte and full contrycyon;
550 For I am commaunded a pylgrymage to take,
551 And grete accountes before God to make.
552 Now I praye you, Shryfte, moder of saluacyon,
553 Helpe my Good Dedes for my pyteous exclamacyon.
554 I knowe your sorowe well, Eueryman.
555 Bycause with Knowlege ye come to me,
556 I wyll you comforte as well as I can.
557 And a precyous iewell I wyll gyue the,
558 Called penaunce, voyder of aduersyte;
559 Therwith shall your body chastysed be,
560 With abstynence & perseueraunce in Goddes seruyture.
561 Here shall you receyue that scourge of me,
562 Whiche is penaunce stronge that ye must endure,
563 To remembre thy Sauyour was scourged for the
564 With sharpe scourges, and suffred it pacyently;
565 So must thou or thou scape that paynful pylgrymage.
566 Knowlege, kepe hym in this vyage,
567 And by that tyme Good Dedes wyll be with the.
568 But in ony wyse be seker of mercy,
569 For your tyme draweth fast; and ye wyll saued be,
570 Aske God mercy, and he wyll graunte truely.
571 Whan with the scourge of penaunce man doth hym bynde,
572 The oyle of forgyuenes than shall he fynde.
573 Thanked be God for his gracyous werke!
574 For now I wyll my penaunce begyn.
575 This hath reioysed and lyghted my herte,
576 Though the knottes by paynful and harde, within.
577 Eueryman, loke your penaunce that ye fulfyll,
578 What payne that euer it to you be;
579 And Knowlege shall gyue you counseyll at wyll
580 How your accounte ye shall make clerely.
581 O eternall God / O heuenly fygure,
582 O way of ryghtwysnes / O goodly vysyon,
583 Whiche dyscended downe in a vyrgyn pure
584 Bycause he wolde euery man redeme,
585 Which Adam forfayted by his dysobedyence:
586 O blessyd God-heed, electe and hye deuyne,
587 Forgyue me my greuous offence!
588 Here I crye the mercy in this presence.
589 O ghostly treasure, O raunsomer and redemer,
590 Of all the worlde hope and conduyter,
591 Myrrour of ioye, foundatour of mercy,
592 Whiche enlumyneth heuen and erth therby,
593 Here my clamorous complaynt, though it late be,
594 Receyue my prayers vnworthy in this heuy lyfe!
595 Though I be a synner moost abhomynable,
596 Yet let my name be wryten in Moyses table.
597 O Mary, praye to the Maker of all thynge,
598 Me for to helpe at my endynge;
599 And saue me from the power of my enemy,
600 For Deth assayleth me strongly.
601 And, Lady, that I may by meane of thy prayer
602 Of your Sones glory to be partynere,
603 By the meanes of his passyon, I it craue;
604 I besech you helpe my soule to saue.
605 Knowlege, gyue me the scourge of penaunce;
606 My flesshe therwith shall gyue acqueyntaunce.
607 I wyll now begyn yf God gyue me grace.
608 Eueryman, God gyue you tyme and space!
609 Thus I bequeth you in the handes of our Sauyour;
610 Now may you make your rekenynge sure.
611 In the name of the Holy Trynyte,
612 My body sore punysshed shall be:
613 Take this, body, for the synne of the flesshe!
614 Also thou delytest to go gay and fresshe,
615 And in the way of dampnacyon thou dyd me brynge;
616 Therfore suffre now strokes of punysshynge.
617 Now of penaunce I wyll wade the water clere,
618 To saue me from Purgatory, that sharpe fyre.
619 I thanke God, now I can walke and go,
620 And am delyuered of my sykenesse and wo.
621 Therfore with Eueryman I wyll go, and not spare;
622 His good workes I wyll helpe hym to declare.
623 Now, Eueryman, be mery and glad!
624 Your Good Dedes cometh now; ye may not be sad.
625 Now is your Good Dedes hole and sounde,
626 Goynge vpryght vpon the grounde.
627 My herte is lyght, and shal be euermore;
628 Now wyll I smyte faster than I dyde before.
629 Eueryman, pylgryme, my specyall frende,
630 Blessyd be thou without ende!
631 For the is preparate the eternall glory.
632 Ye haue me made hole and sounde,
633 Therfore I wyll byde by the in euery stounde.
634 Welcome, my Good Dedes! Now I here thy voyce
635 I wepe for very swetenes of loue.
636 Be no more sad, but euer reioyce;
637 God seeth thy lyuynge in his trone aboue.
638 Put on this garment to thy behoue,
639 Whiche is wette with your teres,
640 Or elles before God you may it mysse,
641 Whan ye to your iourneys ende come shall.
642 Gentyll Knowlege, what do ye it call?
643 It is a garment of sorowe;
644 Fro payne it wyll you borowe.
645 Contrycyon it is
646 That getteth forgyuenes;
647 He pleaseth God passynge well.
648 Eueryman, wyll you were it for your hele?
649 Now blessyde be Iesu, Maryes sone,
650 For now haue I on true contrycyon;
651 And lette vs go now without taryenge.
652 Good Dedes, haue we clere our rekenynge?
653 Ye, in dede, I haue it here.
654 Than I trust we nede not fere.
655 Now, frendes, let vs not parte in twayne.
656 Nay, Eueryman, that wyll we not, certayne.
657 Yet must thou lede with the
658 Thre persones of grete myght.
659 Who sholde they be?
660 Dyscrecyon and Strength they hyght,
661 And thy Beaute may not abyde behynde.
662 Also ye must call to mynde
663 Your Fyue Wyttes as for your counseylours.
664 You must haue them redy at all houres.
665 Howe shall I gette them hyder?
666 You must call them all togyder,
667 And they wyll here you in-contynent.
668 My frendes, come hyder and be present,
669 Dyscrecyon, Strengthe, my Fyue Wyttes, and Beaute.
670 Here at your wyll we be all redy.
671 What wolde ye that we shold do?
672 That ye wolde with Eueryman go,
673 And help hym in his pylgrymage.
674 Aduyse you / wyll ye with him or not in that vyage?
675 We wyll brynge hym all thyder,
676 To his helpe and comforte / ye may byleue me.
677 So wyll we go with hym all togyder.
678 Almyghty God, loued may thou be!
679 I gyue the laude that I haue hyder brought
680 Strength, Dyscrecyon, Beaute, & V. Wyttes. Lacke I nought.
681 And my Good Dedes, with Knowlege clere,
682 All be in company at my wyll here.
683 I desyre no more to my besynes.
684 And I, Strength, wyll gy you stande in dystres,
685 Though thou wolde in batayle fyght on the grounde.
686 And though it were thrugh the worlde rounde,
687 We wyll not departe for swete ne soure.
688 No more wyll I vnto dethes houre,
689 What so euer therof befall.
690 Eueryman, aduyse you fyrst of all;
691 Go with a good aduysement and delyberacyon.
692 We all gyue you vertuous monycyon
693 That all shall be well.
694 My frendes, harken what I wyll tell:
695 I praye God rewarde you in his heuenly spere.
696 Now herken, all that be here,
697 For I wyll make my testament
698 Here before you all present:
699 In almes / halfe my good I wyll gyue with my handes twayne
700 In the way of charyte with good entent,
701 And the other halfe styll shall remayne
702 In queth, to be retourned there it ought to be.
703 This I do in despyte of the fende of hell,
704 To go quyte out of his perell
705 Euer after and this daye.
706 Eueryman, herken what I saye:
707 Go to Presthode, I you aduyse,
708 And receyue of hym in ony wyse
709 The holy sacrament and oyntement togyder.
710 Than shortly se ye tourne agayne hyder;
711 We wyll all abyde you here.
712 Ye, Eueryman, hye you that ye redy were.
713 There is no Emperour, Kynge, Duke, ne Baron,
714 That of God hath commycyon
715 As hath the leest preest in the worlde beynge;
716 For of the blessyd sacraments pure and benygne
717 He bereth the keyes, and therof hath the cure
718 For mannes recempcyon -- it is euer sure --
719 Whiche God for our soules medycyne
720 Gaue vs out of his herte with grete pyne.
721 Here in this transytory lyfe, for the and me,
722 The blessyd sacraments vii. there be:
723 Baptym, confyrmacyon, with preesthode good,
724 And the sacrament of Goddes precyous flesshe & blod,
725 Maryage, the holy extreme vnccyon, and penaunce.
726 These seuen be good to haue in remembraunce,
727 Gracyous sacraments of hye deuynyte.
728 Fayne wolde I receyue that holy body,
729 And mekely to my ghostly fader I wyll go.
730 Eueryman, that is the best that ye can do.
731 God wyll you to saluacyon brynge,
732 For preesthode excedeth all other thynge:
733 To vs holy scrypture they do teche,
734 And conuerteth man fro synne, heuen to reche;
735 God hath to them more power gyuen
736 Than to ony aungell that is in heuen.
737 With v. wordes he may consecrate,
738 Goddes body in flesshe and blode to make,
739 And handeleth his Maker bytwene his handes.
740 The preest byndeth and vnbyndeth all bandes,
741 Bothe in erthe and in heuen.
742 Thou mynystres all the sacramentes seuen;
743 Though we kysse thy fete, thou were worthy.
744 Thou arte surgyon that cureth synne deedly;
745 No remedy we fynde vnder God
746 But all onely preesthode.
747 Eueryman, God gaue preest that dygnyte,
748 And setteth them in his stede amonge vs to be;
749 Thus be they aboue aungelles in degree.
750 If preestes be good, it is so, suerly.
751 But whan Iesu hanged on the crosse with grete smarte,
752 There he gaue out of his blessyd herte
753 The seuen sacraments in grete tourment;
754 He solde them not to vs, that Lorde omnypotent.
755 Therfore Saynt Peter the apostell dothe saye
756 That Iesus curse hath all they
757 Whiche God theyr Sauyour do by or sell,
758 Or they for ony money do take or tell.
759 Synfull preestes gyueth the synners example bad:
760 Theyr chyldren sytteth by other mennes fyres, I haue harde;
761 And some haunteth womens company
762 With vnclene lyfe, as lustes of lechery.
763 These be with synne made blynde.
764 I trust to God no suche may we fynde;
765 Therfore let vs preesthode honour,
766 And folowe theyr doctryne for our soules socoure.
767 We be theyr shepe, and they shepeherdes be
768 By whome we all be kepte in suerte.
769 Peas! For yonder I se Eueryman come,
770 Which hath made true satysfaccyon.
771 Me thyhnke it is he in ded.
772 Now Iesu be your alder spede!
773 I haue receyued the sacrament for my redempycon,
774 And than myne extreme vnccyon.
775 Blessyd be all they that counseyled me to take it!
776 And now, frendes, let vs go with-out longer respyte.
777 I thanke God that ye haue taryed so longe.
778 Now set eche of you on this rodde your honde,
779 And shortely folowe me.
780 I go before there I wolde be. God be our gyde!
781 Eueryman, we wyll not fro you go
782 Tyll ye haue done this vyage longe.
783 I, Dyscrecyon, wyll byde by you also.
784 And though this pylgrymage be neuer so stronge,
785 I wyll neuer parte you fro.
786 Eueryman, I wyll be as sure by the
787 As euer I dyde by Iudas Machabee.
788 Alas, I am so faynt I may not stande;
789 My lymmes vnder me do folde.
790 Frendes, let vs not tourne agayne to this lande,
791 Not for all the worldes golde;
792 For in to this caue must I crepe
793 And tourne to erth, and there to slepe.
794 What, in to this graue? Alas!
795 Ye, there shall ye consume, more and lesse.
796 And what, sholde I smoder here?
797 Ye, by my fayth, and neuer more appere.
798 In this worlde lyue no more we shall,
799 But in heuen before the hyest Lorde of all.
800 I crosse out all this. / Adewe, by Saynt Iohan!
801 I take my tappe in my lappe and am gone.
802 What, Beaute, whyder wyll ye?
803 Peas! I am defe. I loke not behynde me,
804 Not & thou wolde gyue me all the golde in thy chest.
805 Alas, wherto may I truste?
806 Beaute gothe fast awaye fro me.
807 She promysed with me to lyue and dye.
808 Eueryman, I wyll the also forsake and denye;
809 Thy game lyketh me not at all.
810 Why, than, ye wyll forsake me all?
811 Swete Strength, tary a lyttel space.
812 Nay, syr, by the rode of grace!
813 I wyll hye me from the fast,
814 Though thou wepe to thy herte to-brast.
815 Ye wolde euer byde by me, ye sayd.
816 Ye, I haue you ferre ynoughe conueyde.
817 Ye be olde ynoughe, I vnderstande,
818 Your pylgrymage to take on hande.
819 I repent me that I hyder came.
820 Strength, you to dysplease I am to blame.
821 Wyll ye breke promyse that is dette?
822 In fayth, I care not.
823 Thou arte but a foole to complayne;
824 You spend your speche and wast your brayne.
825 Go thryst the in to the grounde.
826 I had wende surer I sholde you haue founde.
827 He that trusteth in his Strength,
828 She hym deceyueth at the length.
829 Bothe Strength and Beaute forsaketh me;
830 Yet they promysed me fayre and louyngly.
831 Eueryman, I wyll after Strength be gone.
832 As for me, I wyll leue you alone.
833 Why, Dyscrecyon, wyll ye forsake me?
834 Ye, in faytyh, I wyll go fro the,
835 For whan Strength goth before
836 I folowe after euer more.
837 Yet, I pray the, for the loue of the Trynyte,
838 Loke in my graue ones pyteously.
839 Nay, so nye wyll I not come.
840 Fare well, euerychone!
841 O, all thynge fayleth, saue God alone --
842 Beaute, Strength, and Dyscrecyon;
843 For whan Deth bloweth his blast,
844 They all renne fro me full fast.
845 Eueryman, my leue now of the I take.
846 I wyll folowe the other, for here I the forsake.
847 Alas, than may I wayle and wepe,
848 For I toke you for my best frende.
849 I wyll no lenger the kepe.
850 Now fare well, and there an ende.
851 O Iesu, helpe! All hath forsaken me.
852 Nay, Eueryman, I wyll byde with the.
853 I wyll not forsake the in dede;
854 Thou shalte fynde me a good frende at nede.
855 Gramercy, Good Dedes! Now may I true frendes se.
856 They haue forsaken me, euerychone;
857 I loued them better than my Good Dedes alone.
858 Knowlege, wyll ye forsake me also?
859 Ye, Eueryman, whan ye to Deth shall go;
860 But not yet, for no maner of daunger.
861 Gramercy, Knowlege, with all my herte.
862 Nay, yet I wyll not from hens departe
863 Tyll I se where ye shall be-come.
864 Me thynke, alas, that I must be gone
865 To make my rekenynge and my dettes paye,
866 For I se my tyme is nye spent awaye.
867 Take example, all ye that this do here or se,
868 How they that I loued best do forsake me,
869 Except my Good Dedes that bydeth truely.
870 All erthly thynges is but vanyte:
871 Beaute, Strength / and Dyscrecyon do man forsake,
872 Folysshe frendes and kynnesmen that fayre spake --
873 All fleeth saue Good Dedes, and that am I.
874 Haue mercy on me, God moost myghty,
875 And stande by me, thou moder & mayde, Holy Mary!
876 Fere not; I wyll speke for the.
877 Here I crye God mercy.
878 Shorte our ende and mynysshe our payne;
879 Let vs go and neuer come agayne.
880 In to thy handes, Lorde, my soule I commende;
881 Receyue it, Lorde, that it be not lost.
882 As thou me boughtest, so me defende,
883 And saue me from the fendes boost,
884 That I may appere with that blessyd hoost
885 That shall be saued at the day of dome.
886 In manus tuas, of myghtes moost
887 For euer, Commendo spiritum meum.
888 Now hath he suffred that we all shall endure;
889 The Good Dedes shall make all sure.
890 Now hath he made endynge;
891 Me thynketh that I here aungelles synge
892 And make grete ioy and melody
893 Where Euerymannes soule receyued shall be.
894 Come, excellente electe spouse, to Iesu!
895 Here aboue thou shalte go
896 Bycause of thy synguler vertue.
897 Now thy soule is taken thy body fro,
898 Thy rekenynge is crystall-clere.
899 Now shalte thou in to the heuenly spere,
900 Vnto the whiche all ye shall come
901 That lyueth well before the daye of dome.
902 This morall men may haue in mynde.
903 Ye herers, take it of worth, olde and yonge,
904 And forsake Pryde, for he deceyueth you in the ende;
905 And remembre Beaute, V. Wyttes, Strength, & Dyscrecyon,
906 They all at the last do Eueryman forsake,
907 Saue his Good Dedes there dothe he take.
908 But be-ware, for and they be small,
909 Before God he hath no helpe at all:
910 None excuse may be there for Eueryman.
911 Alas, how shall he do than?
912 For after dethe amendes may no man make,
913 For than mercy and pyte doth hym forsake.
914 If his rekenynge be not clere whan he doth come,
915 God wyll saye, 'Ite, maledicti, in ignem eternum.'
916 And he that hath his accounte hole and sounde,
917 Hye in heuen he shall be crounde.
918 Vnto which place God brynge vs all thyder,
919 That we may lyue body and soule togyder.
920 Therto helpe the Trynyte!
921 Amen, saye ye, for saynt charyte.FINIS.
Thus endeth this morall playe of Eueryman.
Imprynted at London in Poules