11. Socrates

11. SOCRATES: FOOTNOTES

1 maryed, married

3 her lynage shulde dure, their lineage should endure

6 empechemente, harm; cunnynge, wisdom

8 covenable, appropriate; couragis, hearts

9 deede beestis, dead beasts

11 maistir, master

19 quod, said

22 Creature, Creator

24 dampned, damned

26 condempned, condemned

30 mannys, man's

32 wonte, accustomed

38 nouther, neither.

40 wote, know

41 fynaunce, finance

45 here, there

48 nacyon, nation

50 peas, peace; lesinges, lies

59 doutefull, respectful

61 dede, did; merveilled, marveled

62 nygh, near

63 weel, well

64 teche and lerne, teach and instruct

67 pleasaunce, pleasure

72 hens, hence

74 suetely, sweetly

75 her, their

78 here, their

83 hidder, hither

88 passinge, surpassingly

91 senewes, sinews; wexe stark, grow stiff.

96 dye anone, die anon (soon)

100 honde, hand

102 yghen, eyes

105 devyded, divided; prestys, priests

109 reed, red

110 balled, bald

111 stered, steered

112 beleve, belief

113 girdelle, girdle

117 sadly, seriously

120 ealed, healed

123 here, their

124 suffisaunt, sufficient

126 tothir, other.

137 sewith covetises, pursues coveted things; leseth, loses

143 keytef, churl

147 duelleth, dwells

149 never a deel proufite, no share of profit

154 overmaistir, oppress; bytte, bit

156 to, too

158 enmyté, enmity

160 Cunnynge, Cleverness

163 parfite, perfect

165 lowable, allowable

166 seth, hereth, sees, hears

167 thistilles, thistles

170 incerteyned, assured

172 conduyte, conduct

173 to moche, too much

174 theynketh, thinks.

179 aventures, chance

182 to besy, too busy

183 eyre, air

184 refeccion, food

185 seche, seek

186 repayren, return

187 sewe, pursue; rightwisnesse, righteousness

191 heete, heat

194 wrothe, angry

195 habundaunce, abundance

196 but, except

200 felaship, fellowship

201 thefes, thieves

211 seiste, say; wene, believe

220 sureté, surety

223 medilleth, meddles

224 partie, part

228 hony, honey

229 leef, leaf (page); mergyne, margin

230 rennyth, runs

231 wery, weary

235 modered, moderated

236 deed, dead

237 delices, delights

241 toon, one

246 partye, part

248 to2, too

251 were, wear

254 eerys, ears

261 seth, sees.

263 caytif, churl

266 of, from

269 sewe, pursue

274 lese, lose

278 nettis, nets

280 mysgovernaunce, bad judgment

281 see, sea; skape, escape; happe, whim

282 deye, die.

283 zarab, a mirage (see note); rennyth, runs

286 ferre of, far off

287 sonne, sun

289-90 parseverith and, perseveres if

290 outher, either

291 mennys eerys deef, men(s ears deaf

292 here yghen, their eyes

297 onlasse, unless; verrey, veritable

299 but, unless.

304 doute, fear

307 vanytté, vanity

316 getith, provides

320 jugith, judges; levers, living

321 deede, dead

322 aferde, afraid

328 withstand, do not do

329 lasse, less

332 disworship, discredit

333 avauntage, advantage

337 folily, foolishly; fayne, glad

341 tydyngis, tidings; seche, seek

344 peas, peace

346 undirstande, understood

349 seyne, say

350 moche language, incessant talking

353 boden, asked to

355 onys, once

359 wote, know

360 se, see

362-63 herkeneth, listens

364 he, it

367 undoth, undoes

372 derke, dark

374 mannys, man(s

379 to moche, too much

380 suete, sweet

381 egre, eager.

387 encrece, increase

391 suffisaunte, sufficient

393 incontynente, unreliable

401 joied, joyful

405-06 empechemente, hindrance

406 expedicioun, assistance

411 folisshe, foolish

412 wawis, waves

416 leve, live

417 nettis, nets

418 her, their

420 bare, carried

421 hoote berith, hot carries

422 seek, sick.

434 sustres, sisters

437 peynted, painted

441 he, it; venyme, venom

443 nouthir, neither

451 science, i.e., course of study

459 recche, reckon (suppose)

467 th'execucioun, the execution

475 woldeste, would

479 castell, castle; engendreth, engenders

481 leyser, opportunity.

484 wolde weel, wishes well

487 leesith, loses

489 saulf, safe

495 avaunte, boast; tho, those

500 dyete, diet

503 parceyve, perceive

510 lever, rather

511 or, ere

513 Sufferaunce, Patience

516 delyver, release

517 lesith, lose

519 leeve, permission

530 breeke, break

532 chese, choose

533 or, ere

543 grene, green

544 hootter, hotter

549 wiste, knew.

11. SOCRATES: EXPLANATORY NOTES

1 Socrates. Among the greatest in a long line of Athenian philosophers, Socrates (c. 470-399 BC) left no writings, so we know his teachings only from the work of his disciples, primarily Plato. Socrates saw virtue and knowledge as one and the same, and emphasized self-analysis above all. He was forced to commit suicide after being charged with impiety and the corruption of the youth of Athens. Plato's dialogues Crito and Phaedo provide the ultimate source for the extended narrative of the philosopher's death, but since Plato was known to the Muslim world mainly through paraphrases and summaries (Marmura, "Medieval Islamic Philosophy," p. 22), the original author of Dicts and Sayings may have obtained this material from a secondhand source. For another medieval account of Socrates' life, death, and teachings, see Higden's version (Polychronicon, ed. Lumby, vol. 3, pp. 270-94). Socrates was an important figure in medieval Islamic philosophical thought. Muslim scholars "monotheized" Socrates as readily as their Christian counterparts did (Alon, Socrates in Mediaeval Arabic Literature, p. 65), adapting his tenets to fit with Islamic theology. Taylor argues that
[Socrates] is consistently presented as maintaining an elaborate monotheistic theology, neo-Platonist in its details, and his condemnation and death are attributed to his upholding faith in one true God against the errors of idolaters. This allows him to be seen as a forerunner of Islamic sages (as he was seen in the West as a proto-Christian), and to be described in terms which assimilate him to figures venerated in Islam, including Abraham, Jesus, and even the Prophet himself. (Socrates, 86)
It would be a mistake, however, to say that the philosopher was fully "converted" to Islam. As Alon notes, "Socrates assumed in Arabic literature the stature of a moral rather than a strictly religious personality. His 'religiosity' was merely a vehicle for introducing him to a Muslim public, who were more susceptible to religious terms" (Socrates in Mediaeval Arabic Literature, p. 93).

1-5 The story of the henpecked Socrates and his shrewish wife Xanthippe was part of Greek folklore, and was told and retold throughout the Middle Ages. See, for instance, Gower's Confessio Amantis (3.639-730). Chaucer's retelling is quite memorable because it occurs as part of Jankyn's book of"wicked wives" in The Wife of Bath's Prologue:
No thyng forgat he the care and the wo
That Socrates hadde with his wyves two,
How Xantippa caste pisse upon his heed.
This sely man sat stille as he were deed;
He wiped his heed, namoore dorste he seyn,
But "Er that thonder stynte, comth a reyn!" (CT III[D]727-32).
Christine de Pizan (1365-c.1429), however, offers a very different conception of Xanthippe in her Book of the City of Ladies (2.21.1):
The noble lady Xanthippe possessed great learning and goodness, and because of these qualities she married Socrates, the greatest philosopher. Although he was already quite old and cared more about searching for knowledge and researching in books than obtaining soft and new things for his wife, the valiant lady nevertheless did not stop loving him but rather thought of the excellence of his learning, his outstanding virtue, and his constancy, which, in her sovereign love and reverence, she considered to be a sign of his excellence. Upon learning that her husband had been condemned to death by the Athenians because he had attacked them for worshiping idols and had said that there was but one God, whom one must worship and serve, this brave lady could not bear it, but completely disheveled, overcome with grief and weeping, she quickly rushed to the palace where her husband was being held, and she found him among the deceitful judges who were administering to him the poison to end his life. Arriving just at the moment when Socrates was about to put the cup to his mouth to drink the poison, she rushed toward him and angrily tore the cup from his hands and poured it all out on the ground. Socrates reproved her for this and urged her to be patient and comforted her. As she could not prevent his death, she was very grieved and said, 'What a great wrong and what an enormous loss to put such a just man to death wrongfully and sinfully.' Socrates continued to console her, saying that it was better that he die wrongfully than justifiably, and so he died. But the grief in the heart of the woman who loved him did not abate for the rest of her life. (trans. Richards, pp. 130-31)
For a discussion of how Socrates' family life is depicted in the medieval Islamic tradition, see Alon, Socrates in Mediaeval Arabic Literature, pp. 52-56.

11 Timee. Timaeus, the Athenian wise man featured in Plato's dialogue of the same name.

21-25 Muslim scholars, like their Christian counterparts, saw Socrates' execution for impiety as a narrative with strong symbolic resonance for their own faith. Alon argues that for Islamic thinkers, the significance of this story"originates from the symbolism of his voluntary death, the good spirit with which he welcomed it and his firm belief in an after-life, all of these being beliefs also shared by various streams of Islam" (Socrates in Medieval Arabic Literature, p. 86). Muslims writers simply omitted any aspects of Socrates' story that did not fit well with Islamic religious principles, for they were evidently"reluctant to connect Socrates in any way with paganism" (p. 87). See Alon, Socrates in Mediaeval Arabic Literature, pp. 61-87, for a full discussion of how Socrates' trial and death are depicted in the medieval Islamic tradition.

25 the kinge of the same cuntree. Athens in Socrates' time was not, of course, a"kingdom." Here the author has reshaped the political landscape to something more familiar to the text's medieval readership.

33 Euclytes. Crito, the friend of Socrates, who visited him in prison in an effort to help him escape the day before he was to be executed. See Plato's dialogue of the same name.

37 go to Rome. An anachronistic reference, given that in Socrates' day Rome was just one of many competing Mediterranean city-states and not yet the world power it would become in the ensuing centuries.

43-52 In Plato's dialogue Phaedo, which recounts Socrates' final hours, the philosopher accepts his unjust death readily and gracefully. Later Christian writers would see the parallels with Christ's death and often depicted Socrates as a kind of proto-Christian who dies for his unstinting belief in the true God.

63 Simon. Probably Simmias, one of the main speakers in Plato's Phaedo.

105-06 thre ordres, that is to seye: in prestys, kinge, and people. This statement reflects the foundation of medieval social theory, the Three Estates (an idea rooted in the Indo-European model of tripartite society): those who pray, those who fight, and those who work.

166-68 This worlde is lyke an higheweye that is full of thistilles, for anone as a man entreth in amonge hem, thei wil pricke him; and yf a man knowe that weye, he wole leve it. Compare to line 180, and see the note for that line.

180 This worlde is but a passage unto anothir worlde. Compare Egeus' speech in Chaucer's Knight's Tale:"This world nys but a thurghfare ful of wo, / And we been pilgrymes, passynge to and fro" (CT I[A]2847-48). See also Aristotle, line 98. For other manifestations of this maxim, see Whiting W663.

247-48 Loke thu be in like wyse to thi fadir and thi modir as thu woldeste that thi children shulde be to thee. A variation on the Golden Rule. See Whiting D274.

285 zarab. Latin zaraph, French zaras, probably meaning"mirage" (S, p. 209n43).

349-50 A man maye knowe a foole by his moche language. For other manifestations of this maxim, see Whiting F401.

354-55 A man hath power over his worde as longe as it is withinne him, and whanne it is onys spoken it is oute of his power. For other manifestations of this maxim, see Whiting W605. Compare The Last Philosophers, lines 43-44.

386 knowe youreself. Much of the wisdom given for each of the philosophers is spuriously attributed, but "know thyself" remains the epitome of Socrates' doctrine of self-knowledge. Schofield notes that many other sayings in this section "show parallels to words of Socrates as given in Plato" (S, p. 209n38).

416-51 These lines contain perhaps the most severe and thoroughgoing misogynist rant in the entire work. Bühler notes that in a different English translation of Dicts and Sayings, "Earl Rivers omitted these lines and wrote: And the said Socrates had many seyinges ayenst women whiche is not translated" (p. 345). The gist of this rant is that women are accused of being inherently false; though they may seem beautiful or wholesome on the outside, on the inside they are wicked creatures whose only motivation is to lead men into carnal temptation.

437-38 I likken thee to the fyre, for the more woode that a man putteth therto, the gretter is the heete. For other manifestations of this maxim, see Whiting W560.

440 adelpha. "A fabulous tree" (MED). Schofield adds that Caxton identified this tree with the chestnut (S, p. 210n47).

475-76 Do to other lyke as thu woldeste that thei shulde do to thee. And do but that that thu woldest were done to thee. Another appearance of the Golden Rule. See Whiting D274.

497-98 Loke thu fellaship nat with that man that knoweth nat himself. See the note to line 387.

543-44 the fyre of grene wode and moyste is more hootter thanne the tothir whanne it is weel sette afyre. For other manifestations of this maxim, see Whiting W563.

558 It apperteigneth to a wyse man that he knowe what his soulle is. This is a variation on "know thyself." See the explanatory note for Socrates, line 387.

11. SOCRATES: TEXTUAL NOTES

22 thei. G: e added above the line.

104 twelve thousand. B reads the numeral in G as xij ml, but the raised "l" should not be mistaken as Roman numeration for "fifty"; ml here is, instead, an abbreviation for Latin millia, meaning "thousand." This reading is supported by S, which reads xijm.

112 had. G: word added above the line.

114 thingis. G: ingis added below the line, this being at the end of the MS page.

151 nat. G: word added above the line.

342 thei. G: word repeated at the top of the next MS page.

353 he2. I follow B in adding.

406 And. G: nd preceded by a blank space for a capital A.

416-17 wommen. G: wommien, with the i marked for deletion.

423 women. G: wo added above the line.

503 G: a repeated Many is canceled.

 
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Socrates is as moche to seye in Greeke as "keper of justice," and he was maryed
agenste the custume whiche was this: thei used at that tyme for to marye goode
folkis togedir to that entente that her lynage shulde dure the lenger amonge hem,
and this Socrates was weddid to the werste womman that was in alle that cuntree.
And by her he had thre children. And he wolde worship wisedome so moche that
he dede grete empechemente to his successours, for he wolde nat lete his cunnynge
to be wretyn. And seide that science was a thinge whiche was faire and clene, wher-
fore it was covenable that it shulde be put oonly in clene and pure couragis, and
nat in the skynnes of deede beestis, nor in suche roten thingis. And therfore he
made never booke nor shewed never booke to his dissiples, but oonly by worde and
disciplyne. And that he lerned of Timee, whiche was his maistir, for whanne the
seide Socrates was in his childehode, he seide to his maistir: "Whi wole ye nat suffre
me to write the lernyngis that ye shewe me?" Timeo aunsuerd him and seide: "Doste
thu coveyte more the olde skynnes of beestis thanne the noble undirstandinge of
man? Loke," he seide, "yf oon meete thee in the weye or in the felde and aske
counsel of thee upon any questyone, [fol. 18r] shulde it be good to thee for to bydde him
tary unto the tyme that thu myght go hoome to thyne house and serche thi bookes?
It were moche more thy worship for to aunsuere him forthwithall." "Forsothe,"
quod Socrates, "it is sothe." "Thanne," quod he, "loke thu kepe wele in thi mynde
that thu lerneste, and nat oonely in thi booke." And Socrates helde him alwaies of
that oppynyon. And defended that no man shulde worshippe ydolles, but he wold
that the Creature of alle thingis were worshipped, and not the ydollis, for thei bene
made of the propre handis of men. And for that techinge the seide Socrates was
dampned to the deth by twelve juges of Athenes, and it was ordeigned that he
shulde drynke certeyne poysons. Wherfore the kinge of the same cuntree was right
wrothe that he was condempned, but he might nat revoke that sentence; never-
thelatter, he gafe him as longe respite as he might. And that same kinge hadde a
shippe whiche was charged with divers thingis that shulde be geven to the ydolles
at certeyne tymes, and were brought in that shippe to offre in the temple. And that
kinge hadde a custume to do no jugemente specially of mannys deth unto the tyme
that his shippe was come home from Athenes, which was nat at that tyme come,
and also it taryed lenger thanne it was wonte to do, for because that the wynde was
contrarye. Wherfore oon of the fellaship of Socrates, whiche was named Euclytes,
came to him to the pryson and tolde him that the kingis shipp shulde come home
on the morowe, and therfore, quod he, "it were right necessarye that we geve foure
hundred pecis of golde to youre keper to that entente that he wolde lete you
escape oute of pryson, and thanne ye might go to Rome and duelle there. And
thanne mayste thu have but litil feere of hem of Athenes nor of the kinge nouther."
To whome he aunsuerd and seide that "alle the good that I have is nat worthe
foure hundred pecis of golde." Thanne Euclytes seide to him: "I wote wele thu
haste nat so grete fynaunce, but thyne othir frendis and I have ynough for thee,
and we wole geve it with right a good will to thi keper yf it please thee for to save
thi lyffe." To whom Socrates aunsuerd and seide: "This citee in the whiche I muste
suffre the deth inne is the right place of my generacioun and of my birthe, and
here thei wole putte me to dethe withoute deservynge and for none other thinge
but that I repreve hem for here unjuste dedis. That is for thei wole nat beleve on
the true God and to leve the worshipping of the ydoles. Wherfore as the people of
myne owen nacyon wolde do to me persecucioun for that I susteyne trouthe, in lyke
wise whiche weye that ever I wente amonge straungiers thei wolde do the same. [fol. 18v]
For I wolde never holde my peas for to seye trouth nor for to dispise lesinges. And
certeignely the Romeyns wolde have lesse pitee upon me thanne the people of this
towne, whiche I am borne inne." Thanne seide Euclyte to him that he shulde have
consideracion of the sorowe and peyne that his wife and children shulde have aftir
his dethe. And he aunsuerd and seide that it were bettir for hem for to be here
thanne atte Roome, "for here thei maye have of youre counsel and be undir your
good governaunce." And it happened upon the thirde daye that the dyssiples of
Socrates comen erly to him as thei were wonte to do, and thanne thei fonde that
the twelve juges hadde bene there and made for to bynde him. And thanne his
dissiples aboveseide asked him many doutefull questyons touchinge the soule, to
whome he spake longe in that same matier, and with as gladde cheer as ever he
dede in his lyffe, wherof thei merveilled gretely to see so grete constaunce in a man
that was so nygh the deth. And oon of his dissiples seide unto him, whiche was
named Simon: "Maister, I knowe right weel that it is a grete greef and peyne to
thee for to teche and lerne us whiles thu arte in this grete trouble; and nat for to
teche us, it is gret hurte, for there shal nat leeve behinde thee in erthe any man of
so good doctryne." To whome he aunsuerd and seide: "Loke ye leve nat to enquere
alle that ever ye wille, for youre inquysicion is my pleasaunce." And thanne thei
asked him of the state of the worlde, and of the composicion of the elementis, to
the whiche he aunsuerd hem gretly. And aftir he seide to hem that "the houre of
my dethe is right nyghe. I wole go reste and seye my prayers to that entente that
I shal have no grete peyne aftir my deth. And therfore I praye you that ye departe
hens for awhile, yf it please you." And thanne he wente in to an hous and seide his
prayours. And aftir that he came out agen and called his wife and his children,
whiche he chasticed fulle suetely and taught hem many goode thingis. And whanne
he hadde done, he badde hem go her waye fro him. And whanne thei were gone,
Euclytes asked him: "What ordenaunce haste thu made for thi wyffe and thi
children?" He aunsuerd none othir thanne: "I was wonte, that is for to seye that
thei shulde do here peyne for to do wele to all folkis, and that thei shulde make
redy her soulles to Him that made all thingis." And even forthwithall there come
oon of the juges to him with the poyson that he shulde drynke, and seide unto him:
"O Socrates, knowe right wele that I am nat he that makith thee for to dye, for I
wote wele that [fol. 19r] thu arte the beste man that ever entred into this lande, but I am
sent hidder by the juges, whiche have commaunded me for to slee thee. And here
is the medycyne that thu muste drynke, and loke thu take it paciently, for as moche
as thu maiste nat eschewe it." Thanne Socrates aunsuerd and seide: "Frende, I wole
take it with good herte, and I wote wele that thu arte nat gilty." And even so he
toke the medecyne and dranke it. And whanne his frendis sawe him drynke it, thei
made a grete crye and wepten passinge soore. And thanne Socrates blamed hem
and seide: "I have sente away the wyffes fro me for by cause thei shulde nat do as
ye do." And thanne he toke himself for to walke a litil. And seide: "O Lorde God,
have mercy upon me." And anon aftir his senewes began to wexe stark, and his feet
began to wexe colde, and thenne he leyde him downe and thanne oon of his dis-
siples toke a prycke and pricked him in the feet and asked him whedir he felte any
of the prickinge. He aunsuerd and seide: "Naye." And so the coldenesse wente up
to his sydes and Socrates seide unto hem: whanne this colde is come to the herte,
thanne he shulde dye anone. And thanne Eucytes seide unto him: "O trusty mais-
ter, the welle of cunnynge and wisedome, wille ye correcte us as longe as youre
good speeche maye laste?" And he aunsuerd and seide: "I wole correcte you none
othirwise in my deynge thanne I dede in my levynge." And thanne he toke the
honde of Euclytes and leyde it upon his visage, and thanne seide Euclytes unto
him: "Sir, commaunde me whatsomever ye will." And he gave him none aunsuer,
but lyfte up his yghen to hevyn and seide: "I presente my soulle to the Maker of
alle the worlde." And even so he deyed, and Euclytes closed his yghen and his
mouthe. Ande Socrates lefte twelve thousand dissiples, and dissiples of his dissi-
ples. And in his lyffe devyded the people in thre ordres, that is to seye: in prestys,
kinge, and people. And seide that preestis shulde preye to God for hemself, for the
kinge, and for the people. And the kinge shulde praye for himself and for his
people, and the people shulde praye for the kinge oonly. And Socrates was a man
of reed colour, and of a competente gretnesse, a faire visage, and his hed was
balled, litil of language, full of thought, lokinge moche downewarde to the erthe.
And whanne he spake, he stered alweye his firste fynger. He leved forty and two
yere and he had wretyn in his seal: "pacience and good beleve in God maketh man
to overcome." And in his girdelle was wretyn: "by the consideracion and forsight
of the end of thingis [fol. 19v] is goten the salvacion of the soule and the body." And estab-
lisshed lawes, whiche he sente into the eest, into the west, into the north, and into
the southe, in so moche that alle people were governed by hem. And seith: "The
firste thinge that thu muste sette sadly thyne herte to is for to kepe dyvyne justice,
serve and obbeye the wille of the same, nat oonly in doynge sacrefices, but as wel
that thu do nat injuste thingis, and that thu swere none othis in begilinge the peo-
ple." And seith: "In lyke wise as the seeke man is ealed of his maladie by the vertue
of his medecyne, in lyke wise is the evel man ealed of evelnesse by the vertue of the
lawe." And somtyme he seide to his dissiples: "I am the seeder, and the vertues of
the soule bene seedis, and the studie is the dew wherof thei take here moysture,
wherfore yf the seedis be nat clene, and the watir nat suffisaunt, that seed that is
sowen maye nat profite." And seith: "Men maye merveyle upon that man that
forgetith the goodes that bene perpetuell of the tothir worlde for the goodis of this
worlde, whiche bene so litill durable." And seith: "The good soule loveth the goode
dedis and commaundeth hem to be done, and the evel soule loveth evel dedis and
commaundeth hem to be done." And seith: "The good soule planteth goodnesse
and bringeth forthe frute of salvacion, and the evel soule planteth wrecchidnesse
and his frute is dampnacion." And seith: "A man maye knowe the good soule by
that that he wole resceive trouthe lightly, and the evel soule by that that he wole
resceive lightly lesingis." And seith: "Whanne a persoone is in doute of doutefull
thinges and is wele affermed in thinges that bene openly knowen, it is a signe that
he is of a good undirstandinge." And seith: "The goode soulles bene right sorow-
full of the evell dedis, and the evell soulles bene right sorowfull of goode dedis."
And seith: "That man that sewith covetises leseth hem fynally, and he shal be by
hem dishonoured, and ho that hatith covetyses shal gete ynough and in the ende
he shal be wele commended." And seith: "The good soule kepith wisedam, and
othir bene saved by him, and the evel soule leseth himself and othir bene loste by
him." And seith: "The soule knoweth alle thingis. Wherfore he that knoweth the
soule knoweth alle. And ho that knoweth it nat knoweth nothinge." And seith: "He
that is a keytef to himself be resoun, he muste be moche more to another man."
And seith: "A litil techinge sufficeth to a good soule, and an evel soule maye nat
profite with moche techinge." And seith: "There bene six maner of people that
bene never withoute hevynesse, that is to seye: he that can nat forgete any annoye
that hath be done unto him; [fol. 20r] an envyous man that duelleth amonge people whiche
bene newely come up to ricchesses; the thridde, ho that hathe duelled in a place
and other men have hadde the proufite, and he hadde never a deel proufite; the
fourthe, a riche man that is fallen in povertee; the fifthe is he that enforceth
himself to come to an estate whiche is nat convenyente for him; the sixte is he that
hath duelled with a wiseman and hath hadde no profite, nor nothinge lerned."
And seith: "He that peyneth himself to teche a man of evel courage is lyke him that
wolde overmaistir a yonge hors, and yf he wole nat geve him an harde bytte, he
shal never come to the ende, for to overcome him." And seith: "A man shulde nat
take hym for angry that is oute of vanytees." And seith: "He that is to moche
amonge men, it draweth no grete love amonge hem; and he that withdrawethe him
to moche, it requereth enmyté. Wherfore it is beste that a man governe himself
evenly." And seith: "Ho that doth wele is bettir thanne the wele, and he that dothe
evel is wers thanne the evel." And seith: "Cunnynge is sought by man, but dis-
crecion is the gifte of God." And seith that wisdame is the leeche of the lawe, and
moneye is the sekenesse, and whanne the leeche maye nat helpe himself, how
shulde he help anothir? And seith: "Thu shalt nat be alle parfite yf thu hatest thyn
enemye. What arte thu thenne whanne thu hateste thi frende? And there bene but
two men that bene lowable in their lyfe, that is to seye: he that can speke and
spekith, and the tothir is he that seth, hereth, and undirstandeth." And seith: "This
worlde is lyke an higheweye that is full of thistilles, for anone as a man entreth in
amonge hem, thei wil pricke him; and yf a man knowe that weye, he wole leve it."
And seith: "Ho that loveth the worlde hath not but labour, and ho that hateth it
hathe reste." And seith: "He is right symple that is incerteyned for to go oute of
this worlde and enforceth himself to make grete bildingis." And seith: "The worlde
is lyke a fyre that is wele kyndled, wherof a litil is good for to conduyte oon the
weye; and ho that taketh to moche therof, it wole brenne him." And seith: "Ho that
settes his thought upon the worlde loseth his soule, and he that theynketh wele on
his soule hateth the worlde." And seithe: "Ho that loveth the worlde maye nat faile,
but he shal falle in oon of two thingis, that is to seye: he shal falle in the enmyté of
a grettir man thanne he is himself, or in the dispreysinge of oure God." And seith:
"That man that getith him enemyes travaileth for his owen distruccioun. And yf
there be many men that hates him, he ne is oute of the aventures of evell [fol. 20v] fortune."
And seith: "This worlde is but a passage unto anothir worlde, and thanne he that
furnesshith himself of suche thinges as bene necessarye to his passage shal go the
more surely oute of peryll." And seithe: "Beth nat to besy for to gete grete thingis
of this worlde, but beth as the birdes of the eyre that seken no more in the morn-
ynge whanne thei go from the tree but their refeccion for that daye; and in lyke
wise the wilde bestis that gone downe fro the hilles for to seche their levynge and
aftirwarde, at nyght, repayren home agen." And seith: "Errour is knowen for evel
at the ende; ho that wole sewe it by the which a man shal knowe rightwisnesse the
bettir aftir errour." And Platon wolde have made a journey, and praied Socrates
that he wolde teche him how he shulde be governed, and he seide unto him:
"Dowte thee of hem that thu knoweste and go nat oute of the highwaye, ne go nat
in the heete, nor in the nyght, nor eete not herbes that thu knoweste not. Loke thu
kepe the highewaye, though so be that it be aboute. Also rebuke nat him that is
oute of the good waye, for he shal be thyne enemye." And somme seide to Socrates:
"What is the cause we see thee nat wrothe?" He aunsuerd and seide: "For I have nat
that that constreyeneth the people to angre, that is to seye: grete habundaunce of
rycchesse." And seith: "Kepe thee that thu duelle nat with a womman but yf grete
nede constreyne thee." And seith: "Two thingis ben gretly to be allowed amonge
othir thingis, that is to seye: lawe and wysdame, wherof men lerne many goode
thingis." And seith: "Ho wil have that he coveiteth, loke he coveyte that thinge that
he maye have." And it happened that Socrates was in felaship with a riche man in
an highwaye, and fortuned to mete with thefes, and thanne seide the riche man: "I
am right gretly hurte yf thei knowe me." And Socrates seide that it shulde be grete
good to him yf thei hadden knoweleche what he were. And seith: "A man shulde
use his tyme in this worlde in oon of tweyne maners, that is to seye: in that that he
desireth to have joye in this worlde and in the tothir, or ellis that he wolde have a
good renowne in this worlde." And seith: "This worlde is dilectacioun of an houre
and sorowe of many daies, and the tothir worlde is light pacience and longe joye."
And seith: "Whatsomever ho be that techith thee a worde of wisedame, he doth
thee more good thanne he gafe thee his thresour." And seith: "Swere nat by God
for any maner wynnynge of sylver, though so be that it is true that ye swere, for
somme shull have suspessyon that thu seiste nat truly, and othir men wole [fol. 21r] wene
that thu swerest for coveityse of the money." And seith: "Yf thi frend be wroth with
thee, loke thu suffre him paciently durynge the tyme of his angre, and aftir that,
aswage him graciously." And seith: "Advyse you how that ye gefe your giftys, for
somme men geven to hem that have no nede, and refuseth to geve hem that have
nede." And seith: "Whanne thu wilt gete thee a frende, loke thu seye wele of him,
for the begynnyng of love is for to seye wele, and evel seynge is the begynnynge of
haate." And seith: "A kinge shulde withdrawe him from evel folke, for th'evell
dedis that be done in his fellaship shal be taken for his." And seith: "Lyfe withoute
lernynge is nat lyfe of man. And the gretteste sureté is to holde goode oppynyons,
and to restreyne coveityses, and hate evell dedis." And seith: "Ho that errith and
repentes him whanne he knoweth the trouthe of his errour hath deserved pardon."
And seith: "He that medilleth him for to correcte every man getis him haate for the
moste partie." And seide to a man whiche seide unto him that he was of a poure
lynage, "If I be lasse worthe for my lynage as thu seiste, thi lynage is lasse worthe
for thee." And seith: "To putte awey anythinge that he knoweth nat the trouthe whi
he shulde do so, it is a token of ignoraunce. And the beste in alle thingis is the
hony." And seith: "The people bene in this worlde lyke as the fygures ben in a
book, for whanne a leef is opened, a man maye see what is in the mergyne and
that that is on the tothir side is hidde." And seith: "Ho that rennyth soore is gretly
wery." And seith: "Yf the witte of a man have nat the sovereignté above alle othir
thingis that ben in man, he shal be overcomen, and brought to nought by hem."
And seith: "He is a beest that discerneth nat betwene the good and the evel." And
seith: "He is a good frende that kepith a man from harme, and good lyfe is ac-
quysicion and dispence modered." And wrote to the king in this maner in recom-
fortinge of him whanne his sone was deed, and seith: "God hath stablisshed this
worlde with houses of tempeste and the tothir worlde with houses of delices and
of grete geftis, and the tempestis of this worlde bene the occasions of giftes in
anothir worlde." And seith: "No man shulde take himself for a wise man." And
seith: "The worlde techith hem that abyden by hem that bene gone." And seith:
"The worlde is perdicion to the toon, and to the tothir." And seith: "Ho that
trustith to this worlde is deceyved bothe in suspessyon and in thought, and the
comynge of thingis to the wil of man makith him lose his mynde." And oon of his
dissiples gave [fol. 21v] him a gifte, and thanne he began to wepe. And thanne it was asked
hym whi he wepte; he aunsuerd and seide: for because he hadde resceived that
gefte, whiche shulde cause the man that gave it him to take awey a partye of his
worship. And seide: "Loke thu be in like wyse to thi fadir and thi modir as thu
woldeste that thi children shulde be to thee." Ande seith: "Loke thu be nat to
wroth, to joieful, ne to gladde, for thei bene fooles dedis." And seith: "A man ought
to be ashamed to speke of that that is shame to do." And seith: "Refreyne the evell
willes of thi youthe, for it shal be the beste gowne that thu maiste were." And seith:
"Loke thu do thi power that no man ought for to seye evel of thee, though so were
that it were lesingis, for every man knoweth nat trouthe, and yet every man hath
eerys." And Platon asked him yf he wolde aunsuere him of thre thingis and he
wolde be his dissiple, and oon of his questyons was what maner of men thei were
that a man aught to have moste pitee upon; the secunde, for what cause the work-
ingis of man turnen to evel; and the thridde, what thinge were beste to do that a
man might resceive the goode rewardis of God. And he ansuerd and seide that
there were thre maner of men whiche a man shulde have pitee upon, that is for to
seye: he that is in the governaunce of an evel man, for he hathe nothinge but sor-
owe of alle that ever he seth or hereth; the secunde is to see a wise man be gov-
erned by a foole, for he is ever in sorowe and in hevynesse; the thridde is a liberal
man that is undir the subjeccioun of a caytif, for he is in gret anguysshe. And seith
that the dedis of man bene evell whanne he hath good counsel and wille nat use
it, and of hem that have ricches and dispendith hem not. And the good rewarde
that men resceiveth of God is whanne a man obbeyeth him entierly unto Him, and
kepith hymself from synne. And thanne came Platon to him and was his dyssiple
alle his lyfe. And Socrates seide: "Dispreise deth and it shal be the lyfe of thi soule,
and sewe justice and ye shal be saved." And seith: "The wise man restith whanne
he fyndeth trouth, and the ignoraunt restith whanne he fyndeth vanytees." And
seith: "The wise man must speke with the ignoraunte as the leeche dothe with the
seek man." And seith: "Ho that hath the pleasaunce of this worlde, it maye nat be
but he shal falle in oon of two thingis, that is to seye: he shal nat have that he cov-
eiteth, or ellis he shal lese that that he hath with moche peyne gadred togedir."
And seith to oon of his dyssiples: "Sone, loke it suffice thee to eete that mete that
wole put awey thyne [fol. 22r] hunger, and drynke that wole staunche thy thurste. And loke
thu thenk wele on thi soule, sewe goode werkis, and lerne wisedame of the beste
men that thu canste fynde in thi tyme. And eschewe these nettis that women have
for to take men inne, for thei bene the hurters of wisedame and make men for to
sewe mysgovernaunce." And seith: "He that loveth this world is lyke him that
entreth into the see, for yf he skape, men wole seye, 'it is by the happe of fortune,'
and yf he deye, men wole seye, 'he was deceyved.'" And seith: "He that seketh the
worlde is like him that seeth zarab and belevyth that it is water, and rennyth so
faste for to drynke therof that he is wery, and whanne he cometh therto he fyndes
nothinge, and thanne is he more thirsty thanne he was before; zarab is a light that
apperith in medowes, and it is lyke, ferre of from a man, as it were watir by shyn-
ynge of the sonne, and whanne a man cometh nygh it, thanne there is nothinge."
And seith: "Man hath peyne in this worlde, what estate that ever he be of, for there
shal nothinge be lefte him of his wynnynge of his dilectacions, and no man par-
severith and thei have contynuelly anguysshes, outher by losse of frendys or oth-
irwise." And seith: "The love of this worlde maketh mennys eerys deef, that thei
maye nat undirstand wysedam, and blyndeth here yghen in suche wise that it
taketh aweye the light of trouthe." And seith: "The love of this worlde makith a
man to have envye, and kepith a man from goode dedis." And seith: "Ho that wole
use trouthe is served with a gretter maister thanne the kinge." And seith: "That
man is nat free that serveth othir men thanne himself." And seith: "Loke thu af-
ferme nothinge onlasse thanne thu knoweste the verrey trouthe." And seith: "Loke
thu do nothinge but it be covenable and longeth to thee for to do, and loke thu
begynne nothinge, but yf thu maye bringe it to a good conclusion." And a riche
man seide unto him: "O Socrates, whi arte thu so poure?" To whome he aunsuerd
and seide: "If thu kneweste poverté wele, thu woldest have gretter pitee upon thyne
poverté thanne on myne." And seith: "It is the gretteste merveyle of the worlde to
see a wiseman wrothe." And seithe: "Deth maye nat be eschewed, and there aught
no man to doute him but he that useth grete inyquyté and litil justice, and hath
doute of dampnacion aftir his dethe." And seith: "The goodnesse of dethe is open-
ly shewed, for by dethe is made the transmutacion of this worlde of shame and of
vanytté to the worlde of worship, the endles worlde, the everlastinge worlde; from
the worlde of vanyté and foly to the worlde of wisdame, of reasoun, and trouthe;
and fro the worlde of labour and turment [fol. 22v] to the worlde of consolacion and reste.
And it is merveille of him that douteth the deth and dothe contrarye thingis to his
salvacioun." Ande seith: "The deth is right light to him that is acerteigned that it
shal come to him hastily." And seith: "He that levyth a good lyfe shal dye a good
deth." And seith: "It is bettir to deye thanne to leve in shame." And seith: "The
deth is reste of the covetouse man, for ever more and more his covetises multiplyen
and his peynes, and therfore the deth is mor covenable to him thanne the longe
lyfe." And seith: "The dethe of an evel man getith grete reste to the good man."
And seith: "The dethe is good bothe for the goode people and evel people: to the
good people, for the rewarde that thei shull have for their goode dedis, and to the
evel people for thei shull do no more synne ne harme to the people." And seith:
"The lyfe jugith indirectely amonge the levers, and the deth directely amonge the
deede." And seith: "A man shulde nat weepe for him that is slayne, for he that
sleeth unjustly dampneth himself." And seith: "Ho that is aferde of anythinge
shulde kepe himself and do his power in suche maner that he maye be in sureté,
and in lyke wise he that douteth the peynes that he shal have aftir his deth, for
synne shulde werke in suche maner in his lyfe that he shulde eschewe the perille
that shulde folowe." And seith: "Whanne thu woldest do anythinge, loke that thu
see before wherfore thu doste it; and yf thu can undirstande that the ende therof
shal be good, do it; yf nat, withstand it." And seith: "It is bettir to a man to passe
with the lasse thanne for to aske of him that thenkith himself that a litil gifte geven
by him is a grete gifte, and that he thenkith himself that he hath done gret grace
to othir folkis." And seith: "Allowe nat the levynge nor the gefte that is geven to
thee of him that dishonoureth thee, for the harme of the disworship is more hurte
unto thee thanne alle the avauntage that thu hast wonne therby." And this he
lerned in his age, wherfore somme seiden unto him: he ought to be ashamed for
to lerne in his age. And he aunsuerd and seide that the grettest shame that an olde
man might have was that he hadde nothinge lerned. And he fonde a yonge man
which had folily dispended and wasted his goodis in so moche that he was fayne
for to eete olyves for hunger, to whome he seide: "Yf the olyves had bene as goode
to thee in the begynnynge as thei be now, thu shuldeste have had at this tyme good
ynough." And seith: "There is no difference betwene a lyer and a grete teller of
tydingis." And seith: "The nobleste thinge that children seche is cunnynge, by the
whiche thei [fol. 23r] eschewe for to do evell dedis." And seith: "The beste wynnynge that
a man maye have is for to gete a good frende." And he herde somme that seide that
a man were more sure for to holde his peas thanne for to speke moche, for in to
moche spekinge men maye erre, and he aunsuerd and seide that it myght nat be
undirstande in hem that speken well. And seide: "There is lasse proufite in him
that holdes his peas thanne is in him that spekith wele, and the spekinge harme
is gretter thanne he that holdes him stille." And seith: "Oon knoweth the wiseman
by that he holdes his peas and that he herith what men seyne." And seith: "A man
maye knowe a foole by his moche language." And seith: "He that wole nat holde
his peas but is constreyned by othir for to holde his peas is the lasse to be praised."
And seith: "Ho that holdeth his peas so longe, til oon make him speke, is more for
to allowe thanne he that spekith so moche that he is boden holde his peas." And
seith: "A man hath power over his worde as longe as it is withinne him, and
whanne it is onys spoken it is oute of his power." And seith: "Ho that hath power
to refreyne his tunge hath power to refreyne alle his othir willes." And seith: "A
man to holde his peas and for to speke is good in many places." And seith: "Yf a
man speke, men knowen by his language whedir he be discrete or not. And yf he
holde his peas, men wote nat what he is." And seith: "Whanne a man wole speeke
he muste considre and se what he wole speke, for it is bettir he considre it thanne
anothir." And seide to oon of his dissiples: "Whanne thu spekiste, loke thu speke
goodely, or ellis holde thi peas." And seith: "Ho that holdes his peas and herk-
eneth shal knowe and lerne by the tales of other men, and ho that spekith othir
shal knowe and lerne by his wordes." And seith: "Sette nat by the deth, for he hath
no grete bitternesse but the feere of himself." And thei asked him what was the
beste getynge. He aunsuerd and seide: "That thinge that a man encresith in
dispendinge it." And seith: "Dronkenesse undoth a man." And seith: "A man shuld
never aske counsell of him that hath sette alle his herte on the worlde, for he wole
geve no counsell but oonely to his owen pleasaunce." And seith: "The good coun-
sell shewith ofte tymes the ende of the deede." And a womman seide unto him:
"Thu olde dotarde, thu haste a lewde visage." To whome he aunsuerd and seide:
"Thu arte a myrrour that is so trouble and derke that the beauté of my visage maye
nat be seene therinne." And seith: "He is right discrete and wise that wole kepe wel
a mannys counseill, and ho that discoverith it is a foole." Ande [fol. 23v] seith: "A man
shulde kepe the secretis that bene shewed unto him, but he is more to be allowed
that kepith secrete that thinge that he is nat commaunded for to kepe." And seith:
"Yf thu maiste nat kepe thyne owen secrete, moche lasse wole he kepe it that thu
tellest it unto." And thei asked him why that a wise man asked any counsel. He
aunsuerd and seid: "For he douteth himself, leste his wille be medled to moche
with his witte." And seith: "If he that useth suete thingis considred wel that he
shulde nedis use egre thingis, he wolde passe with the lasse." And seith: "He that
is of goode maners is of good and sure lyfe, and is loved of the people, and he that
is of evell maners is even the contrarye." Ande seide to oon of his dissiples: "Sone,
loke thu truste nat on this worlde, for it wole never paye that it promyseth." And
he chastised his dissiples in seyenge: "Accustume youreself to holde you contente
with a litill. And knowe youreself, for that is beste. And that small thinge that
cometh to you, loke ye sette it nat at a litel, for it maye right wele encrece and mul-
tiplye. But loke ye gete you frendis in good love, and loke ye shewe hem never no
grete hate." And somme asked him what difference ther was betwene trouth and
lesyngis. He aunsuerd and seide: "As moche difference as is betwene the eere and
the yghe." And seith: "Ho that asketh more thanne suffisaunte that that he hath
availleth him of nothynge." And seide to oon of his dissiples: "Loke thu truste nat
to moche in tyme, for it failleth incontynente to hem that putten her trust ther-
inne." And seith: "Sone, ware that thu be nat deceyved by the beauté of thi youthe,
ne by the helth of thi body, for the ende of thyne helth shal be seeknesse and the
ende of thi seeknesse shal be deth, and thu maiste nat eschewe the seeknesse of this
worlde, for there is no joye withoute sorowe, ne cleernesse withoute some maner
of derkenesse, ne reste withoute labour, ne congregacion withoute devysion." And
seith: "The evell fortunes of this worlde bene grete hurtes to somme folke, and to
somme folke grete good and grete helpe." And seith: "Whanne the worlde makith
thee for to be joied upon thyne enemye, in like wise it wole make thyne enemye
enjoye upon thee." And seith: "Ho that stablissheth himself in a covenable place
is the more ensured from the perilles of this worlde." And seith: "Ho that is ful-
filled of the joies of this worlde is fulfilled of thre thingis, that is to seye: of poverté,
for it shal nat falle to him to have ricchesses at his wille; of sorowe; and empeche-
mente withoute any expedicioun." And seith: "Loke thu telle never thi secrete to
him that is wroth [fol. 24r] whanne thu prayes him to kepe it counseyle." And it was asked
him by anothir whi that the see was salte, to whome he aunsuerd and seide: "Gefe
me the prouffite that thu shalt have therof and I shal telle thee." And oon asked
him what he hadde wonne in his cunnynge. He aunsuerd and seide that he was
lyke a man that sate upon the see-syde lokinge upon the symple and folisshe peo-
ple that were wrapped in the wawis. And seith: "Fredome is to serve a good man,
and the more that he servyth him, the more free he is." And seith: "Sewe nat
coveitises and thu shalt reste thee in alle placis." And seith: "Ho that wole have
frendys, loke firste whedir he maye refreyne hem of her covetises. And yf he maye
do it, leve with hem, and yf thu maiste nat, depart from hem." And seith that wom-
men have nettis made redy and bente for to take men inne, by the whiche nettis
no man maye be taken but thei that wole be taken of her owen wille or suche folkis
as knowe hem not. And seith: "There is no gretter empechemente thanne the ig-
noraunce of wommen." And he sawe a womman that bare fyre in her honde, to
whome he seide: "The more hoote berith the more colde." He see anothir wom-
man that was seek, to whome he seide: "The evell restith with the evell." And he
sawe anothir womman that men ledde to the justice, and many othir women that
wente with here wepten faste, and thanne he seide: "The evel wepeth for the evel
that hath loste herself." And he sawe a yonge mayden that lerned for to write, to
whom he seide: "Multiplye nat evel upon evel." And seith: "The ignoraunce of man
is knowen in thre thingis, that is to seye: whanne a man hath no thought for to use
reasoun, the secunde is whanne a man wole nat refreyne himself from coveitise,
the thridde is whanne a man is governed by his wiffe as wel in that that she
knoweth nat as that she knoweth." And seide to his dissiples: "Wille ye that I shal
teeche you howe ye maye escape from alle evellis?" And thei seiden: "Yee." Thanne
he seide unto hem: "For anythinge that maye be, kepe you that ye obbeye nat to
wommen." Thanne thei seide unto him agen: "What seiste thu of oure goode
modres, and of oure goode sustres?" He aunsuerd hem and seide: "Lete it suffise
you that I have seide, for alle bene lyke to evell." And seith: "Ho that wole gete
cunnynge, loke that he put nat himself under the governaunce of wommen." He
sawe a womman that peynted her visage and he seide unto her: "I likken thee to
the fyre, for the more woode that a man putteth therto, the gretter is the heete."
And anothir tyme thei asked hym [fol. 24v] what him seemed of wommen. He aunsuerd
and seide that wommen were lyke a tree whiche is called adelpha - adelpha is a
tree, the faireste of the worlde to loke upon, but he is all full of venyme. Thanne
thei asked him whi that he blamed wommen so moche, seenge that he hadde never
comen into this worlde yf thei had not bene, ne noone othir man nouthir. To
whome he aunsuerd and seide: "Wommen bene lyke the date tree whiche is fulle
of prickes that prycken, and hurten men whanne thei comen to nygh it, yet
natwithstandinge, it berith goode datis and swete." And thanne thei asked him whi
he fledde so from the wommen. He aunsuerd and seide: "For I see hem comounly
flee fro the goode, and do the evell." And seide that an unthryfty fellowe shulde
never be withoute a wyffe. And there came a womman to him and seide: "Wilt thu
have any othir thanne me?" And he aunsuerd her: "Arte nat thu ashamed to offre
thiself to him that wil nat have thee?" And thei asked him to what maner of science
it were beste for a man to sette his childe unto, and he aunsuerd and seide: "A man
shulde sette his childe to suche sciencis as bene profitable bothe in this worlde and
in the tothir." Thanne thei seide unto him: "Whanne wilte thu begynne for to gete
goode vertues?" He aunsuerd and seide: "Whanne I begynne to refreyne my will."
And seith: "Whanne a man entendith so diligently for to gete connynge that he
taketh none heed of skornynge nor of dispreysinge of othir folkes, thanne is he
wyse." Somme seide unto him that the wordis that he hadde seide were nat be-
leved, to whome he aunsuerd and seide: "I recche never so that the wordis were
goode and resonable, and I rekke nat moche though thei that have herde theim
have nat beleved hem." And seith: "He is good and in the gretteste estate of boun-
tee that enforceth himself for to have goodnesse. And he is in the secunde estate
that enforceth himself to have good by othir men. And ho that settis by nouthir of
hem is not to be preysed." And seide to oon of his dissiples: "Loke thu be nat
envyous of that that is nat durable, but loke ye be envyous of that that is per-
petuell." And seith: "Putte reasoun and discrecioun before thee in alle thingis, and
thu shalte be the bettir garnysshed to th'execucioun of hem." Ande seith: "Loke
thu lette nat for to do wele, though it so be that it is nat knowen." And somme
seide unto him that his face was right foulle. He aunsuerd and seide it was nat in
his power for to make his face, wherfore, quod he, "I ought nat to be blamed
though my face be foulle, for that that is in my power I can wele araye it and [fol. 25r] make
it fair, but that that thu haste in thi power, thu haste dishonoured it." And seith:
"Loke thu be true to him that is in fellaship with thee, and that oweth thee good-
wille and trusteth unto thee, and thu shalte be the more sure to eschewe an evel
ende." And seith: "Do to other lyke as thu woldeste that thei shulde do to thee. And
do but that that thu woldest were done to thee." And seith: "A man is corrected by
experyence and taught by the wysedome of the world." And seith: "Somme have
more delyte to gete a good renowne thanne for to gete golde or sylver." And seith:
"Pacience is a stronge castell, and hastynesse engendreth repentaunce, and wor-
ship is the fruyte of trouthe." And seith: "Thi frendys worshippen thee for thi
trouthe and thi loyalté, and thi goodnesse shal be knowen by leyser that maye
prouffite thee." And seith: "It suffiseth a man to knowe that ought to come every
daye in the worlde, for by that he may lerne newe science." And seith: "He oughte
to be worshipped that wolde weel to every man, and ho that wolde evell to othir
putteth himself in grete perill, and thei that kepen him maye litil profite him, but
the juste man abideth surely." And seith: "A man that kepeth himself weel getis a
grete wynnynge. And the man that sette not by himself nor by his soulle leesith
himself. Ho that is paciente dothe wele. And he shal nat repente, and he that holdes
his peas is saulf." And seith: "Do goode deedis and thu shalt gette joye." And seith:
"The companye of wyse folkis is reste, ande the companye of a foole is laboure."
And seith: "To have a litille and suffisaunte, it is worshipp; and to have moche
withoute suffysaunte, it is shame." And seith: "Whanne that thu canste nat, loke thu
aske. And whanne thu haste erred, correcte thiself. And yf thu have done evell,
repente thee; and aftir that thu haste repented thee, beware that thu falle nat agen
in the same. And loke thu make none avaunte of tho thinges that thu haste wel
done." And seith: "Ho that yeldes ageyne to him that dothe wele is partener of his
good deede." And seith: "Loke thu fellaship nat with that man that knoweth nat
himself." And seith: "That man is in grete reste that at no tyme is wrothe." And
seith: "That man aughte to be called a wele disposed man that kepeth attemper-
aunce in his dyete, and in his spekinge." And seith: "Shame thee not for to here
trouthe hosomever seye it, for trouthe is so noble that it worshippeth every man
that shewith it." And seith: "That that kepith a man from shame [fol. 25v] is bettir thanne
the ricchesse that shame getis him." And seith: "Many folkis can nat parceyve any
shame in hemself, but thei can fynde to seye shame of alle othir folkis." And seide
to a man that was overcomen in bataille and fledde: "Thu doste evel to flee the
worshipfull deth for to leve in shame and dishonoure." And seide to his wyfe that
wepte whanne thei toke him oute of the pryson to slee him: "Wherfore wepest thu,
wyffe?" And she aunsuerd: "Ought nat I to weepe," quod she, "whanne thei leeden
thee to be dede wrongefully?" To whome he aunsuerd and seide: "Haddest thu
lever that thei hadde ledde me to the deth with right?" And seith: "Ho that erreth
before or he knowe the trouthe is worthy for to have pardon, but he that erreth
wilfully is nat worthy for to have pardone." And seith: "Wyne and wisedame maye
nat be togedir, for thei be somwhat contrarye." And seith: "Sufferaunce is a castell
that kepith the wiseman from doynge of lewed and evell werkis, and it is the high-
weye for foolis for to falle in alle evell and lewed werkis." And seith: "Kepe youre
angre secretly yf thu mayste none othirwise delyver thee therof." And seith: "That
that a foole lesith maye nat be recoverd, but a wise man maye lese nothinge." And
seithe that a sage foole blamed a wyse man, wherfore oon of his fellawes asked him
leeve that he myght avenge him, to whome he aunsuerd and seide: "A wise man
geveth no leve for to do evel." And seith: "Alle thinges bene susteyned and
strengthed by justice." And seide: "Be ye certeyne whatsomever ye do; it maye nat
be hidde though it so be that it appere nat at the firste tyme, yet in processe of
tyme it shal come oute." And seith: "A good name is bettir thanne ricchesse, for
ricches loseth and the good name dureth, but wisedame is a ricches that nouther
wasteth ne loseth." And seith: "Kepe thee frome dronkennesse, for the witte that
is occupied by wyne is lyke to an hors that casteth downe his maister." And seith:
"Loke thu take heed to the governaunce of him whiche thu takeste thi counsell of,
for yf he governe evel his owen thingis, by resoun he shulde governe thyne in the
same wise, for he shulde love hem bettir thanne thyne." And seith: "Loke thu
breeke nat the lawes that bene profitable to the peple." And seith: "Poverté is bettir
thanne ricchesse that is evell goten." And seith: "A man withoute connynge is as
a provynce withoute a kinge." And seith: "A kinge shulde chese him to his ser-
vaunte that he knewe for good and true, before or he were kinge." And seith: "Ho
that maketh every man lyke good maye nat have hem [fol. 26r] alle for frendys." And seide
to his dyssiples: "Commytte alle your thinges to God, and loke ye excepte noth-
inge." And seithe: "Loke that thu take nat thi synnes for litil and magnyfye nat thi
goode dedis, for yet thu shalt have nede to bettir." And seith to his dissiples: "Loke
ye beware of the worlde and thenke that it is a thistell wherupon ye muste needis
steppe." And seith: "Lyke as thes men that usen their bodily witte kepe hemself
from angre afore the kinge, by gretter reasoun men shulde kepe hem from angre
that bene before God, that is for to seye: in alle places, for God is presente overall."
And seith: "He that wil nat be lightly wroth, it is more peyne whanne he is angry
to make him colde thanne thei that bene soone angry, like as the fyre of grene
wode and moyste is more hootter thanne the tothir whanne it is weel sette afyre."
And thei brought before Socrates certeyn folkes whiche putte upon him many grete
injuryes, and he aunsuerd hem and seide: "Yf ye knowe any othir wynnynge of me,
loke ye gete it." And there was done more reverence to anothir thanne to him,
wherfore oon asked him whedir he had any envye therat. He ansuerd and seide:
if he wiste that the tothir had more cunnynge thanne he, he wolde have had envye
thereat, and of nothinge ellis. And seith: "Wisedame and good name be nat found-
en but in goode persones, wherfore thei be bettir thanne ricchesses that be founden
in foolis and in evel peple." And seith: "Thi soulle shulde thenke for to do weel
and thi body aught to helpe it." And seith: "What that thu haste hidde in thi
courage, loke thu shewe it nat oute to every man." And a man that sawe Socrates
arayed in a poure clothinge seid unto him: "This is nat Socrates that hathe geven
the lawes to the people of Athenes that is thus symply arayed." To whome he aun-
suerd and seide: "The true lawe was nat made by good clothinge, but by science
and vertue." And seide to his dyssiples: "Dispreise the deth and in lyke wise drede
it." And seith: "It apperteigneth to a wyse man that he knowe what his soulle is."


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