The Life of St. Julian Hospitaller in the Scottish Legendary (c. 1400)


1 Lines 5-6: I drew near to (i.e., sought the company of) good men, by God, / Though little of it (i.e., of what I learned from them) has remained with me

2 Lines 13-14: [Travelers] removed hat or hood or other garment / [And] quickly [removed] the right foot from the stirrup

3 Lines 19-22: Travelers at that time placed such hope in Saint Julian, / And there are still many men / Here and there who practice the same custom

4 Lines 231-32: Who, without knowing it, killed both his father and mother: that wrought (i.e., caused) him harm

5 Therefore he completely made up his mind (lit., directed his will)

6 Where no one knew him, and he knew no one

7 Lines 257-58: He thought he would be able to win wealth then through his service (i.e., as a knight), since he was a strong man

8 Lines 279-83: Meanwhile, Julian's father and mother lived in great sorrow from [the time when] their son was lost, / So that they could neither cease nor stop / Looking for him both far and near

9 Which their son owned, and afterwards his heir [would own]

10 And thought beforehand about (i.e., looked forward to being with) his wife

11 Lines 334-36: ["]Who were those two lying in my bed? / For I believed that it was a lover, / Whom you held dearer than me"

12 Lines 357-59: I tried to struggle against Fortune, / And now I have cruelly deprived both my father and mother of life (lit., put both [out] of life)

13 Lines 365-68: Alas, I should not have expected to succeed, / When I began to strive with Fortune. / I did not believe that what the deer had said to me would come true

14 Lines 384-85: But whither thou goest, I shall go, / And suffer woe with thee as well

15 Lines 397-98: Then he and she, who were rich / In gold and silver, would spare nothing

16 Lines 411-12: It happened [that] he (i.e., Julian), very weary, / Lay down in his bed one night

17 Lines 434-35: But, despite any fire that he could make, / The youth could take no natural warmth from it

18 Lines 465-68: Therefore those who ask lodging in thy name shall be sheltered, / And at the least made comfortable, / Although they may not have a delightful feast

19 Lines 474-77: Led a life so pleasing to God -- / Who guided their deeds so well / [During] the little time that they lived here -- / On one [and the same] day and at one [and the same] hour


1-28 This introduction is original to our author. The recitation of the Lord's Prayer (line 16) is widely associated with the cult of Julian Hospitaller (de Gaiffier, p. 167). A late-twelfth-century Latin chronicle of the Percy family (London, BL MS Royal 7.A.III) provides the most expansive account of practices associated with the saint, confirming the details offered here by the ScL-poet as forming part of a popular and long-standing British tradition. According to the Percy chronicle, every prudent Englishman, "when about to set out on a journey which involves spending even a single night from home, makes a point, before he crosses his threshold, of saying a Paternoster, accompanied by a prayer to St. Julian for protection against ghostly and other foes by the wayside, both for man and beast and for goods and chattels, and that he may securely take his ease at his inn or wheresoever he may find hospitality on his travels." The anonymous monk who compiled this chronicle goes on to report on the disastrous consequences which befell William de Percy, a vassal of William the Conqueror, who, following a successful war against Scotland, arrogantly refused to take part in further prayers to Saint Julian. One after another of his holdings were burned or otherwise destroyed as Percy traveled homewards until finally he repented and asked pardon of St. Julian, whereupon good fortune once again attended him. See Gilson, "St. Julian the Harbinger," 304-12.

22 sammyne. This Northern variant of ME same, here meaning "the same [thing, practice]," may be influenced by the OE adverb samen/somen (together).

oysis. The oy diphthong is a common spelling in later Northern ME and Middle Scots to indicate the Anglo-Norman u in verbs like use, refuse, pure, etc., which is often represented by linguists as ü and in ME as iu, eu, ew, etc. Note also the -is suffix, common in Northern ME and Scots in the present plural.

29-228 ScL first lists the five Julians whose legends are to be narrated (lines 29-40), and then offers accounts of Julian of Le Mans (lines 41-62), Julian of Brioude (lines 63-142) and Julian the brother of Julius (lines 143-228), following the order of LA.

231-32 sleucht, / . . . wocht. The apparent false rhyme here is more likely the fault of the scribe than the poet, who probably wrote sleucht / weucht. The stem vowel -eu- in sleucht ("slew," more usually sloh in ME), results from leveling from, or analogy with, the preterite plural and past participle forms of the verb, sleughen/sleuchen (this Northern pronunciation eventually predominated further south: hence Modern English slew). The rhyme-word in line 232, wocht, corresponds (apart from the final -t) to the common ME word woh/wogh, "harm, injury," but the variant weuch is recorded elsewhere in Middle Scots, and the poet doubtless originally wrote weucht to rhyme with sleucht. The intrusive final -t added to both words is common in this manuscript after -ch- (compare "thocht," "though," line 6; compare also "treutht," line 367).

232 His unwitting. This phrase (here meaning, in effect, "with his unwitting") is quite common as an absolute construction with the possessive in late ME and Scots. Compare also ScL Placidas, line 531, "& nereby, his vnwittand, / his sonnis twa were duelland" (ed. Metcalfe, 2.84), and Chaucer's The Franklin's Tale, "Unwityng of this Dorigen at al, / This lusty squier . . . / Hadde loved hire best of any creature" (CT V[F]936-37, 939).

233-34 kene, / . . . wyne. This sort of rhyme pair (pronounced ken-wen) is common in Northern ME and Scots texts, where short i, especially before a nasal consonant, was pronounced more like short e.

246 bytande brand. Where Jacobus de Voragine in LA says simply, "you . . . are going to kill your father and mother" (trans. Ryan, 1.127), the Scots poet adds something close to an old English kenning with the alliterative expression bitande brand. Brand in Old English meant "flame," but by virtue of a flame's "shining" property, it was also used to indicate a sword.

248 gretumely. A Scots dialect word. See the comments on ScL's vocabulary in the Introduction to I(b), above.

259-78 This passage embellishes and alters the equivalent passage in LA: "Having reached a very remote region he took service with a prince, and carried on so manfully in wartime and peacetime that the prince dubbed him a knight and gave him a widow, a noblewoman, in marriage, with a castle as dowry" (trans. Ryan, 1.128). Julian's entry into feudal service affords the Scots poet an opportunity to invoke the conventions of romance, and he not only expands and dramatizes the negotiations between Julian and the prince, dwelling on the former's prowess, but also further transforms the widow into a yung lady (line 273) and then endows Julian with a family: And gat fare barnis one his wyfe (line 278).

281 tynt. The verb tyne, tine (from ON tyna) is common in Northern and Midland ME, but thereafter is confined to Scots. It is cognate with OE teona ("grief/pain").

284 thai of riches mychtty were. These riches, which mean nothing to Julian's parents in comparison with the loss of their son, form part of a series of reflections on the meaning and use of wealth and power original to this text. In the lines just before this passage we saw the romance-like emphasis on Julian's rise to power in his new domain. In a later section the couple use their accumulated wealth to build the hospital which will become their means of enacting penance for Julian's sin, thus allowing the poet to have his cake and eat it too: he develops the story in a way that embraces the values and conventions of secular romance up to a point, but at the same time he suggests the limited value of worldly goods, with the further implication that they are most appropriately used for acts of charity.

289-90 care, / . . . ayre. The rhyme here is good; care (pronounced approximately as in Modern English) is simply a Scots spelling of ME cayre (from ON keyra, "to drive/ ride").

290 ayre. The heir is not mentioned in LA.

292 Gane to the feld hym to refres. LA says only that "As it happened, Julian was away" (a castro casu recesserat, ed. Maggioni, p. 212; trans. Ryan, 1.128). The Old French prose version says quite explicitly that Julian has gone out hunting, and much is made of the parallelism between his earlier hunting activities and his return to the pursuit of this sport after his marriage. The Scots version seems to fall somewhere in between, mentioning that Julian has gone off to rest or relax (hym to refres) in the fields. It seems at least possible that the poet has hunting in mind, though he has not chosen to make this explicit.

298 Metcalfe indicates, through a set of ellipsis marks between lines 298-99, that he thinks something has been missed out here, namely, the statement in LA that the wife "realized that they were her husband's father and mother" (trans. Ryan, 1.128). This is certainly possible but it could as easily be the case that the Scots poet thought the inference was obvious enough not to need being made explicitly.

303 fet be dycht. The correct translation of this phrase is far from clear. It has no equivalent in LA, which says only that "she welcomed them cordially and, for love of them, left her husband's bed to them and slept in another room" (trans. Ryan, 1.128). The most obvious meaning for fet is "feet," but this makes little sense here with dycht ("prepared/provided/dressed"). If, however, we take fet to mean a tub filled with hot water (see MED fet, 1a), not only does the phrase make more sense, but it parallels an episode in both the French prose and French verse versions of the legend, where the wife offers the couple baths which had earlier been prepared for her husband and herself (for the prose, see Bart and Cook, p. 127; for the verse, see lines 3264-67, ed. Tobler, "Zur Legende vom heiligen Julianus," p. 149). An alternative would be to define fet as "festive meal." The early epitomized Latin version of Bartholomew of Trent (1244) says that the couple was well received and refreshed (bene recepti et refecti), while the later Bruges manuscript printed by de Gaiffier mentions giving them a meal (cenam) as well as a bath (de Gaiffier, p. 169 and pp. 212-13). In the French prose version, after the couple has bathed, Julian's wife lor aporta a mengier (Bart and Cook, p. 127). All three versions, in other words, offer some support for a tradition which spoke of a welcoming meal; however, while the MED gives fete as meaning a feast or banquet, the spelling fet is not listed as a possibility, so this is perhaps a less likely alternative than the bath.

303-04 fyrste, / . . . reste. The original rhyme pair was probably freste (a variant form of first) and reste.

311 forwenyt. This verb is not recorded elsewhere in ME or OE. Metcalfe (ScL 3.292) suggests translating forwenyt as "unexpected," which he links to OE wenan, to "think" or "expect," taking the prefix for- as a negative intensifier. He also emends the manuscript's of his wyf to to his wyf. But in the OE (and ME) verbs where for- is thus used (e.g., fordon, "kill"; fordruncen, "drunk"), it is not a simple negative, meaning un-, and Metcalfe's hypothetical verb would mean something more like "regret" (as in ME forthinke), or even "expect the worst," neither of which is remotely appropriate here. It seems simpler to interpret for- as the widely attested temporal prefix for(e), with almost adverbial force (accent on for- as well as wen-) and wenyt as the simple past tense of wene(n), and to retain the manuscript reading of his wyf. The line would thus mean literally: "and he thought beforehand about his wife," i.e., he was anticipating being with his wife (in bed). Metcalfe's emendation, substituting to for of, is also unnecessary. The direct object of wenan in OE is frequently in the genitive case, although this is rare in ME, but constructions with various prepositions, including of as well as to, occur (which is understandable since the verb was used more and more as a simple synonym of think). If the poet's meaning here is that Julian was thinking about making love to his wife, it makes his fury at finding her in his bed with another, as he thought, even more understandable and parallels the poet's effort throughout this episode to humanize Julian's terrible crime. See also below, note on lines 320-26.

315 curtyng. Apparently the bed envisaged by the Scots poet was of the deluxe kind (later called a "four-poster"), enclosed on all sides with drapes for privacy and warmth. A famous illustration (c. 1460) of such a bed, with the curtyng upe . . . wavit, is in King René's Book of Love, ed. Unterkircher, trans. Wilkins, folio 2 (plate on p. 17).

320-26 Jacobus' unexpressive statement that Julian believes he has found uxorem cum adultero suo ("his wife and her lover"), followed by the equally bland silenter extracto gladio ambos pariter interemit, "silently drew his sword and killed them both" (LA, ed. Maggioni, p. 213; trans. Ryan, 1.128), is amplified here first by the more idiomatic rendering of Julian's suspicion that someone had defowlyt (line 320) his wife, and then by the lengthy portrayal of his anger and loss of reason which, if they do not justify the deed, represent it as more humanly comprehensible.

337-92 The ScL-poet devotes over fifty lines to the scene of Julian's reaction to the discovery that he has murdered his parents, a major expansion of LA's brief paragraph (trans. Ryan, 1.128). The dramatic qualities of the scene, evidently viewed by the poet as the emotional center of the legend, are heightened by the following added details: the wife's expression, to Julian, of her joy at the arrival of his parents (lines 337-42), a nice piece of dramatic irony under the circumstances; her subsequent fainting (line 346: the double faint is also found in the French prose version, but only Julian is said to have "nearly fainted" in Jacobus' narrative); the wife's taking Julian in her arms to comfort him (lines 349-50, 378-81); and Julian's added sorrow over the sight of his wife's distress (lines 389-90). The wife's protestation to Julian that quhare thu gais, I sal ga (line 384: possibly echoing Ruth 1:16) forms part of a much more extended focus on the mutuality of the couple's tender concern for one another.

353-72 The Scots poet alludes to Fortoun in line 357, and again in line 366, as a personified representation of fate. Boethius' sixth-century work, The Consolation of Philosophy (frequently translated into medieval vernaculars, e.g., by Chaucer) was enormously influential in popularizing this conception of Fortune as a (female) figure who controls one's earthly destiny, however hard one may strive against it (although the goal of Boethius' work is to teach indifference to Fortune's earthly blows by the cultivation of moral virtue and the desire for union with God). The equivalent segment of LA neither uses the word nor dwells on Julian's reaction to his fate at such length: Ecce, impletum est uerbum cerui, quod dum uitare uolui, miserrimus adimpleui, "Behold, the word of the stag has been fulfilled; what I wished to avoid, most miserable, I have fulfilled" (ed. Maggioni, p. 213; my translation). Julian's lament on Fortune concludes at line 372 with a verse of moving poetic simplicity: and yet this wrak is falline in. The standard English work on Fortune is still that of Patch, The Goddess Fortuna in Medieval Literature.

357 Preysand. Scots preyse, with its ME equivalent prese/prece, is a variant form of press (pronounced approximately as if to rhyme with Modern English race).

397-98 See the note to lines 284-85, above. LA makes no mention of the couple's wealth at this point.

407-8 There is no vow of chastity in LA. This is the strongest single piece of evidence for the poet's knowledge of other traditions as seen by a comparison with the French prose version, which states that the couple vowed never to have "carnal relations" with one another: Andui ont voé a Dieu que ja mes n'avront charnel conpaignie ensemble (Bart and Cook, p. 131).

414 The great fall of snow that makes the courtyard unrecognizable is a nice northern touch on the part of our Scots poet. The French prose speaks of a great and horrible storm, but without giving details, while Jacobus says simply that it was a freezing night.

423ff. The Scots poet refers to the visitor as a yunge barne in line 423 and subsequently as a child, in lines 429, 434, and 445. Curiously, and despite Ryan's translation, which uses the words "man" and "stranger" to describe the visitor, LA in fact never uses a noun, introducing him as a voice (uocem), and then as "one near death from the cold" (gelu deficientem), and thereafter referring to him only in pronominal form as ipsum or ille (ed. Maggioni, p. 213). All the other versions I have read describe him initially as a leper, without reference to age. Where, then, does the idea of a child come from? In one branch of the Julian tradition in French the stranger reveals himself as Christ rather than an angel, and perhaps knowledge of this tradition has led our poet to make a connection with St. Christopher, who transports a child who grows heavier and heavier until he finally reveals himself to be the Christ. I have not found anything comparable in other Middle English versions; SEL, for example, stays closer to the tradition in identifying the visitor as a "man" and a "grislich mesel" (see SEL St. Julian the Hospitaller, lines 109ff., DM 1.36).

447-48 The general sense of this couplet is clear enough - namely, that the child had been greatly disfigured by leprosy and sickness - but the syntax seems corrupt or incomplete. One solution would be to emend al (line 447) to of, in which case one might translate: "who before, from (lit., of) leprosy and great sickness, had been very ugly."

459 folow. I.e., fellow (OE feolaga, one who lays down money in a common cause), which does not often have the sense "spouse," and then mainly in Northern texts.

485-780 As in LA, the account of Julian the Apostate takes up the remainder of the text. For the blessing in the final lines, by means of which the poet returns himself and the audience to Julian Hospitaller, see the Introduction to this chapter.


Abbreviations: MS = Cambridge, University Library, MS Gg.2.6, fols. 169r, 171v-174v

1 Quene. MS: wene. The initial letter Q is wanting. A space was left at the beginning, presumably for a capital which was never added.

229 Yhete. MS: Hete. Space is left for a large capital Y, signaling the beginning of the account of Julian Hospitaller.

244 sal. MS omits.

246 be. MS: but.

254 in. Metcalfe's emendation, into, is not necessary to the sense (ME in often means"into") but does make for better scansion. The poet, however, should not be held to a strict standard of metrical regularity.

273 a yung. MS: and a yung.

275 mychtty mane. Metcalfe emends to a mychtty man, perhaps to improve the meter. That the indefinite article a is not necessary for sense or idiom is evident from lines 258 ("sene he was manly mane") and 277 ("And lang tyme led gude lyfe").

288 thame. MS omits.

321 Forthi. MS: For.

327 as the ded. MS: as he ded.

343 hard. Metcalfe emends to had hard, to regularize the meter, but the poet is just as likely to have accented he and hard with a pause (at the caesura) between them, thus: Fra that he / hard this tale. See also below, line 368.

359 fellounly. MS: fellouny.

368 sad. Metcalfe unnecessarily emends to had sad, regularizing the meter.

375 ay. Metcalfe's emendation (ay sal I) fails to solve the problem in this sentence, which lacks a main verb, not just an auxiliary, and does not need to repeat the personal pronoun from line 374. Although LA has"never shall rest until," the context here requires something like ay sal dre,"ever will endure/suffer (i.e., be a penitent), until Jesus . . . accepts my penance."

388 with thee. MS: with he.

407 tharewith als. MS: with als. The MS reading is clearly wrong. The simplest emendation is to substitute withal ("moreover") for with als ("with also"), as noted by Metcalfe (3.292), but because it produces better sense and scansion the emendation adopted here is that of Horstmann, Barbour's des schottischen nationaldichters Legendensammlung, 1.224.

420 That. MS: Thai.

429 this. MS: his.

435 spil. MS: spiel.

469 angel than of. MS: angel of [?] than of.

476 lifit. MS: lif.

479 rycht as. MS: rycht.
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The Life of St. Julian Hospitaller in the Scottish Legendary (c. 1400)

Quene that yunge mane I was,
I travalyt oft in sere place,
Sic thing in my yuthe to lere
Quharewith myn elde I mycht stere.
And drew me to gud mene, pardé,
Thocht lytil thareof be bydyne one me.1
The travalouris thane custume had,
That al day yed ore rad
And for travale ware wery,
Quhene thai come til thar herbry,
And namely fra thai mycht it se,
Quhethyr that it ware scho ore he,
Hat or hud tak of ore clath,
The rycht fut of the sterape rath,2
And to Sancte Julyane devotly
A Paternoster say in hy,
In hope that al gud herbry suld haf,
That in sik wyse it suld crafe.
Sic hope into Sancte Julyane
The travalouris thane had tane,
As mony men yet are
That sammyne oysis here and thare.3
Bot, for that fele ma thane ane
Haly mene are callit Julyane,
I yarnyt to wyt quhilk was he
Men socht in sic necessyté,
And sa his story I fand al hale,
As til yow here tel I sall.

[Omitted here are lines 29-228, comprising the rest of the poet's Prologue and the
legends of Saints Julian of Le Mans, Julian of Brioude, and Julian the Deacon.]

Yhete in this stoury find we ane,
That als wes callyt Julyane,
That fadyr and modir bath sleucht,
His unwitting: that wrocht hyme wocht.4
This Julyane wes of nobile kene,
And had mykil warldis wyne.
And hapnyt hyme in youthhede
That he a day til huntis yede.
And quhene he had socht oure the land,
A gret hart and fare he fand;
Thane Julyane rycht besyly
Folouyt this hart al anerly.
And sa at the laste that best
Turnyt agane, and mad areste,
And sad: "Quhy chasis thu me swa,
Wykyt man, that thi fadir sal sla,
And als thi modir of thi hande
Sal de be dynt of bytande brand?"
Quhene this was sad, he was sary,
And dred thai wordis gretumely,
That the hart had sad hyme til.
Forthi he dresyt hale his wil5
To leve the land al prively;
And as he thocht, he dyd in hy.
Thane one his way sone yed he
Furth in a fere cunctré,
Sa nane hyme knew, na he nane;6
Forethi arest thare has he tane.
With his service to wyne gud thane
He thocht, sene he was manly mane.7
Thane to the prince of the cunctré
Sone he socht; and quhene that he
Wyst quhare he wes and with hyme met,
Rycht curtasly he has hyme gret,
And sad, "Sir, and it be youre wil,
Lele service I wald mak you til,
And at youre wil tak of yow fe."
The prince sad, "Welcume thu be!"
And hyme resavit thankfully,
And gret gyftis gef hyme in hy.
Thane this Julyane, that was wicht,
Sa wele in palace and in fycht
Enplesit his prince, that he hym mad
Knycht -- sic luf til hyme he had --
And gert hyme wed a yung lady,
That had castel and syngnory.
Sa that he worth mychtty mane
Thru gud and prowes that he wane,
And lang tyme led gud lyfe,
And gat fare barnis one his wyfe.
Bot his fadyre in the mene tyme
And his modir in mykil pyne
Lifit, fra tha thare barne tynt,
Fore thai cuth nothir cese na stynt
To sek hyme bath fere and nere.8
Tho thai of riches mychtty were,
Bot thareof nathing thai rocht,
Bot al levyt and thare sone socht,
Waferand fra place to place,
Til that it hapnyt thame one case
To that castel ayrly to care,
That thare sone aucht, and syne his ayre.9
And that mornyng Julyane was
Gane to the feld hym to refres,
Unhaply in the sythware,
Lytil before that thai come thare.
And sone the laydy had thame sene,
And saw thame honest folk and clene,
And franyt quhat thare willis ware,
And quhat thai socht that tyme thare.
Fore scho had hard hyre husband tel
Al hale the case as it befel,
Thame resavyt scho tendyrly,
And, fore thai ware ful wery,
Scho gert thare fet be dycht fyrste,
Syne lad thame in a bed to reste,
And bad thame slepe and mery ma,
For scho wald to the chapil ga.
And sa scho dyd, and levyt tham, stil
Slepand soft at thare wil.
And as this thing done was,
Julyane come fra his solas,
And forwenyt of his wyf,10
But areste come belyf,
Trewand thane foroutyne wene
That scho in hyre bad had bene.
With that the curtyng upe he wavit,
And twa lyand has persavyt,
That he mysknew, fore thai ware hyd;
Tharefor gret sorow til hym tyd,
For he wend it had bene sum mane,
That had his wyf defowlyt thane.
Forthi of ire he was sa hat,
That he al resone had forget,
And in that wodnes, ore he stynt,
A scharpe swerd owt he hynt.
Thane fadir and modir in that sted,
In his wodnes, he slew ded.
And as the ded donne was,
The yunge laydy come fra the Mes,
And fand hyre lord wrath wondirly;
Thane the cause speryt scho in hy.
Bot quhene he had hiss wyf sene,
Gret wondir put away his tene,
And sad til hyr: "I pray thee, say,
Quhat ware yone twa in myn bed lay?
For I trewit it had bene a fere,
Thu had than me fore mare dere."11
Thane til hyme smyland scho sad,
"Thai twa, that tharein I lad,
Youre fadyre and youre modir are,
That fare has socht you with hart sare.
Tharfore I beysit me til es
Thame in althing and to ples."
Fra that he had hard this tale,
His wit he tynt nere for bale,
And into swonyng fele as ded;
And scho one hyme fel in that sted.
Thane watir one thame men can caste,
And thai ourecome at the last.
Thane has scho hyme in armis tane,
And sad til hyme: "My dere lemmane,
Quhat amovit you this to fare?
Tel me, and nathinge with me spare!"
Thane sad he: "My laydy gud,
Quhat wondir is thocht I be woud?
In hart haf I sa mekil wa
That myself me byrd to sla;
Preysand with Fortone for to stryf,
And now has put bath ofe lyf
Fadir and modir fellounly!12
Allace! That evire borne wes I,
For to be callit the wykiste
Fra suth to north, fra est to weste --
For of my ded sa cruele
The warld sal nevire cese to tel.
Allace! I thocht nocht fore to thryfe,
With Fortone quhen I began to strife.
I gaf na treutht that it suld be
Suth, the hart had sad til me;13
And now fulfillyt has in dede
The thing that I sa sare cane dred;
Tharefore I levyt kithe and kyne,
And yet this wrak is falline in.
Tharefore farewele, systir swet;
For with thee sal I nevire met,
Bot ay . . . nycht and day,
Til Jhesu Criste, that mychttis may,
My pennance tak and rew of me!"
Thane wes gret pité fore to se
How his wyf hyme in armis hynt,
Gretand sa fast that scho na stynt,
And sad til hyme: "Swet lord dere,
Quhat, wene ye to leve me here?
Na, forsuth, it beis nocht swa,
Bot quhare thu gais, I sal ga,
And wa with thee thole als wele14
As evire I tholyt welth or wele,
And of thi pane partenare be,
As I of joy has bene with thee."
A new dysese thane can he tak,
Seand his wyf sic sorou mak;
Na hyre purpos he chang ne mycht
Nothir for prayere na for mycht.
Thane passyt thai furth, waverand,
A gret revire til thai fand,
Quharein fele drownyt ayre and lat,
For thare was nothir bryg na bat.
Thane he and scho, that mychtty ware
Of gold and silvir, wald nocht spare,15
Bot ane hospytale mad but were
One the bank of that rivere,
Quharin al that had nede
Thai herbryt wele, and can tham fede.
And al that wald the watir pas --
For he mekile man and stark wes --
Quhene thai come nycht or day,
He bare thame oure but delay.
And tharewith als in chastyté
Devotly lifyt his wyf and he.
And quhene thai lang had led sic lyf
Thankful to God, he and his wyfe,
It hapnyt hyme al wery
In til his bed a nycht to ly,16
Quhene sa gret falline wes the snaw,
That nane mycht the yerd knaw,
And wele gret was the frost withal.
About mydnycht he hard ane cal
Ful pytuisly one hyme be name,
And gretand sad: "Ryse, Julyane,
And oure this watir thu bere me
That in poynt is to peryst be!"
Thane Julyane na dwelling mad,
Bot furth he rane but abad,
And fand a yunge barne in that stede,
That fore cald nere wes ded;
For he wes myssele and sare seke,
And ilke bale cane uthyre eke,
That Julyane hyme bethocht
That he the watir pas wald nocht
With this chyld, til he warmyt ware.
Forthi sone he hynt hyme thare,
And to his ostel has hyme borne,
And mad a fyre sone hyme beforne.
Bot, fore na fyr he mycht mak,
The child na kyndly het cuth tak.17
Thane for dowt the barne suld spil,
He mad a bed and bare hyme til,
And happyt hyme ful tendirly,
And wele lang tyme let hyme ly.
And quhen cummyne wes the day,
Julyane come quhare he lay,
And fand hyme yet lyand clede,
As he had lad hyme in his bede.
He bad hyme ryse, fore it wes day,
Gyf he had hast of his way.
The chyld semyt than fere mare clere
Thane is the sowne in myd yere,
That wes before al myslary
And gret seknes ful ugly.
For of his face come a leme
As it had bene a sonebeme.
With that he passit ful rath in Hevine,
And til his hoste sad in swet stevine:
"Gud Julyane, God has send me
To comfort and to say to thee,
That thi pennance sa thankful is,
That He til thee al hale this myse
Forgyfine has quyt and fre.
And alsa bad me sa to thee,
That thu sowne, and thi folow bath,
Sal til Hyme cum in Hevine ful rath,
Quhare ye sal bruk the gret blyse,
That He as grantyt til al his,
And namely for thu set thi wil
Til herbry al that come thee til.
Forthi thai at in name of thee
Askis herbry, sal herbryit be,
And be wele esyt at the lest,
Suppos thai haf nocht plesand fest."18
The angel than of his sycht
Vanyst, and he with al mycht
Lowyt fast God of His bounté,
That let hyme sa His angel se.
Sancte Julyane than and his wyf
To God led thai sa thankful lyfe --
That thare dedis sa wele can stere
The lytil tyme that tha lifit here --
That one a day and in ane houre19
Thai deyt, and til oure Saveoure
Sa quemful, that, rycht as thai twa
Has tholyt here bath wele and wa,
Sa togydyre He thame brocht
Til His gret blyse, that falis nocht.
The quhilk fore His debonare wil
He grantyt us al to cum til.
When; (see note); (t-note)
many (various)
With which to guide my old age

walked or rode
When; to; lodging
the moment when
Whether; she

Say the Lord's Prayer quickly
such manner; crave (desire)

(see note)
because many more than one

yearned to know which
so; found; complete

(see note)

Yet; (t-note)
(see note)
(see note)
kin; (see note)
worldly joy
happened [to] him (it came about)
one day to hunting went
over (throughout)
A great and fair hart
beast (creature)
said: "Why . . ."; so
shall slay; (t-note)

die by blow of [your] sharp sword; (see note); (t-note)

dreaded (feared) those; greatly; (see note)

intended; haste
at once
far country; (t-note)

dwelling-place; taken

(see note)
sought out
Knew where
said, "Sir, if it . . ."
Loyal; would; to you


fight (war)

caused (arranged for) him [to]; (t-note)
became; (t-note)
wealth and honor; won

begot fair children

(see note)

Then (at that time); (see note)
for that; cared
left everything
to them by chance; (t-note)
early to arrive; (see note)
(see note)

to refresh himself (i.e., exercise); (see note)
Unfortunately, in the meantime

recognized them [as]
asked what
were seeking; (see note)
Because; heard
The story all wholly

She first caused their bath to be prepared; (see note)
Then laid

sport (diversion)
(see note)
Without stopping; quickly
Believing; without doubt

curtain; lifted; (see note)
two lying [there]; perceived
did not recognize; hidden
defiled; (see note)
with anger; (t-note)
madness, before he stopped
deed; (t-note)
found; terribly angry
asked; quickly

amazement; anger
[he] said

to; (see note)
Those two

[a] sad heart
busied myself to comfort

When; (t-note)
nearly lost for sorrow
as [one] dead
began to
came to (recovered)
loved one
caused; behave thus
spare me nothing
(see note)
though (if); mad
such great woe
I ought to kill myself
(see note)


most wicked


bitterly did fear
For that reason I left kindred and family
vengeance is coming to pass

always; (t-note)
who can perform mighty acts
Accepts my penance and has pity on me

Weeping so hard

in truth; will not be

pain partner


Wherein many; early and late
bridge nor boat
(see note)

without doubt

wished to cross over the water
great; strong

over without
(see note); (t-note)


recognize the courtyard; (see note)
so great
heard someone call
Who am about to perish; (t-note)
without delay
young child; place; (see note)
cold nearly
leper and grievously ill
each trouble increased the other
So that Julian thought to himself
cross over
Therefore; took
hostelry; carried

fear; die; (t-note)



If he was in a hurry to be on his way
far more bright

[riddled with] leprosy; (see note)
[because of his] great illness
ray of light
As [if]
rose quickly into Heaven
said; voice

completely; sin
altogether and freely
soon both you and your spouse; (see note)
especially because
they that

from; (t-note)
Praised greatly; goodness


[Were] so pleasing; (t-note)

through; gracious
may He grant; (see note)

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