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Ancrene Wisse: Part Five


1-4 Twa thinges neometh yeme . . . the earre, Pay (lit., Take) attention to two things concerning confession in the beginning: the first (lit., earlier), concerning what power it has; the second, what kind it ought to be. These are now like two limbs (or, branches) and each one is divided, the former into six, the second into sixteen parts. Now this [following section] is concerning the former.

5 mihtes, powers.

5-6 ah nulle ich . . . on us-seolven, but I do not want to say any but six: three against the devil and three in ourselves.

6-7 schent then deovel . . . ure luren, destroys (or, shames) the devil (then = declined def. art.; schent = reduced form of schendeth), hacks off his head, and scatters his army. Confession washes us of all our stains (lit., filths), repays us all our losses.

8-10 Either haveth hise threo . . . sloh Oloferne, each [of the two subdivisions] has its three. We will now prove (i.e., illustrate) all [of them]. The first three are all shown in Judith's deeds. Judith - that is, confession, as was said before - slew Holofernes.

10-11 Turn th'ruppe . . . i-evenet to ancre, Turn [to the section] above (lit., there-up) where we spoke about the kinds of birds which are compared to anchoresses (see Part Three).

11-14 Ha hackede of his heaved . . . schrift on heorte, She hacked off his head and afterwards came and showed it to the town-priests. Then is the fiend destroyed (or, shamed) when one reveals all his wicked deeds [in confession]: his head is hacked off, and he [is] slain in the man (or, person), as soon as he (i.e., the penitent) is ever very sorry for his sins and has confession in [his] heart.

14-18 Ah he nis nawt . . . totreoden anan, But he is not yet destroyed as long as his [severed] head is concealed, as Judith did (i.e., concealed it) at first, before it is shown - that is, before the mouth in confession puts (or, casts) out the deadly sin - [and] not only the sin, but all the beginning of it (lit., thereof), and the forerunners which led into the sin - that is, the devil's head, which one must trample at once.

18-20 Thenne fli[t]h his ferd . . . ha hefden biset, Then his army flees at once as did Holofernes' [army]: his wiles and his tricks that he assails us with put themselves to flight (i.e., flee), and the town which they had besieged is rescued.

20 seggen, say.

21 delifret, delivered, set free.

21-22 Judas Macabeu . . . i ferde, Judas Maccabeus - who stood against him? (see 1 Maccabees 4 ff.). Likewise, in Judges, the people when after Joshua's death they (lit., it) asked for [someone] who would be their leader and lead them in an army (perhaps, into battle).

22-23 Quis erit dux noster? "Who will be our leader?" (adapted from Judges 1:1).

23 ham ondswerede, answered them; Judas, Judah.

23-25 ant ich chulle ower faes . . . as Judith, and I will deliver your foes' land into his hands. Look now very carefully what this is to say (i.e., what this means): Joshua means "health" (or, salvation) and Judah [means] "confession" - as does Judith.

25-28 Thenne is Josue dead . . . he ga bivoren, Then is Joshua dead when the soul's health is lost through any deadly sin. The sinful self is the devil's country (lit., the monster's land), who is our mortal enemy, but our Lord promised to deliver this land into Judah's hands, for which reason he goes before (i.e., is the leader).

28 gunfanuner, the standard-bearer.

29 ferd . . . gode theawes, army - which is (lit., are) good virtues.

29-31 Schrift reaveth . . . gasteliche thet ilke, Confession steals from the devil his land - that is, the sinful man - and scatters (or, destroys) Canaan, the fiend of hell's army. Judah did it physically, and confession which it symbolizes does the same [thing] spiritually.

31-33 This beoth nuthe . . . her-efter, These are now the three things which it (i.e., confession) does to the devil. The second (or, other) three things which it does to ourselves - that are these [which follow] hereafter.

34 wescheth, washes.

34-35 Omnia in confessione lavantur . . . confitebimur, "All things are washed [away] in confession." The gloss concerning [this verse]: "We shall confess to You, God, we shall confess" (Psalm 74:2; with gloss from Peter Lombard, On the Psalms [PL 191.698]).

35-37 Ant thet wes . . . bute of sunne, And that was symbolized when Judith washed herself and stripped herself of [her] widow's clothing, which was a mark of sorrow - and there is no sorrow except from sin.

37-38 Lavit corpus suum . . . viduitatis, "She washed her body and stripped herself of the clothes of her widowhood" (Judith 10:3).

38-39 Schrift eft al . . . togederes, Confession brings back all the good that we had lost through deadly sin (lit., head, capital sin) completely again and restores [it] all together.

39-40 Joel: Reddam vobis . . . et erugo, Joel: "I shall restore to you the years which the locust, the brucus (i.e., a kind of wingless locust), mildew and the caterpillar have consumed" (Joel 2:25).

40-42 This wes bitacnet . . . the blisse bitacnith, This was symbolized by the fact that (lit., through that) Judith clothed herself with holiday clothes and adorned herself externally as confession does (i.e., adorns) us internally: with all the fair ornaments which joy symbolizes.

42 thurh Zacharie, through Zacharias.

42-43 Erunt sicut . . . projeceram eos, "They will be as they were before I drove them away" (adapted from Zacharias 10:6).

43-45 schal makie . . . to sawle, will make the man just as he was before he sinned, as pure and as fair, and as rich with all good which belongs to the soul.

45-46 The thridde thing . . . ham bathe, The third thing that confession does for ourselves (i.e., us) is the fruit of these other two and completes (lit., ends) them both.

46-49 This is bitacnet . . . on Ebreische ledene, That is symbolized by the fact that (lit., thereby) Judah in Genesis won Benjamin from Jacob (see Genesis 43). Benjamin says (or, means) as much as "son from the right side." Judah - that is (or, means), "confession," as Judith is also, for they both mean one [thing] in the Hebrew language.

49-50 Thes gasteliche Judas . . . of heovene, This spiritual Judah got from Jacob, his father - that is, our Lord - [the right] to be his right-hand son, and enjoy without end the inheritance of heaven.

50-53 Nu we habbeth i-seid . . . o sixtene stucchen, Now we have said (i.e., spoken) of what kind of power confession is (or, consists), which efficacies (or, powers) it has, and [have] named six. Let us look now carefully at what confession must be, which is of (i.e., has) such strength. And in order to show (or, reveal) it better, let us divide this limb into sixteen parts.

54-57 Schrift schal beo wreiful . . . sunderliche seggen, Confession must be accusing, bitter with sorrow, whole (or, complete), naked, made often, quick, humble, full of shame, fearful, hopeful, wise, true, and voluntary, one's own, and steadfast, thought out long before. Here now are as it were sixteen parts which are connected to (or, associated with) confession, and we [will] say some words about each one separately.

58-60 Mon schal wreien him . . . makede me don, One must accuse himself in confession, not protect himself, or say "I did it because of another [person]. I was forced to it. The fiend made me do it."

60 wereden ham, protected themselves; neddre, serpent.

61-63 The feond ne mei neden . . . bute of us-seolven, The fiend cannot force anyone into any sin, though he incite (lit., egg on) to it, but he thinks very well of [it] (i.e., the devil is very pleased) when anyone says that he made him sin, as though he (i.e., the devil) had power, who has none at all except from ourselves.

63-64 Ah me ah to seggen . . . the deovel, But one ought to say, "My own wickedness did it, and willing and ready I bowed to (i.e., obeyed) the devil."

64-67 Yef thu witest ei thing . . . withstonde ne mahtest, If you blame your sin on anything but yourself, you do not confess yourself; if you say that your lack of strength could not do anything else, you turn your sin upon God who made you thus, so that you, by your claim, cannot withstand (or, persevere).

67 Wreie we thenne us-seolven, [Let us] accuse ourselves then.

67-68 Si nos ipsos . . . judicaremur, "If we would judge ourselves, we would then not be judged" (1 Corinthians 11:31).

68-69 ant demeth her us-seolven, and judge ourselves here.

69 cwite of wreiunge . . . dome, free of accusation at the great Judgment.

69-70 thear as, where (i.e., concerning which place).

70-73 Hinc erunt accusancia peccata . . . se premet? "On this side there will be accusing sins; on that side, terrifying justice; above, an angry judge; below, the horrible gaping netherworld of hell; inside, a burning conscience; outside, a blazing world. In what part of the earth can a sinner thus caught conceal himself?" (Anselm, Meditation 1 [PL 158.709 ff.]).

73-77 O the an half . . . the prophete witneth, "On the one side on Judgment Day our black sins will violently accuse us of the murder of our soul. On the other side stands righteousness, with (or, in) which there is no pity, dreadful and grisly, and horrific to behold; above us, the angry judge" - for as soft as he is here, he [will] be hard there; as mild as he is now, [he will be] stern then; a lamb here, a lion there, as the prophet bears witness.

77-78 leo rugiet: quis non timebit? "the lion will roar: who will not be afraid?" (Amos 3:8).

78 greden, wail (i.e., roar); offearet, afraid.

79 cleopieth him lomb, call Him lamb; Agnus Dei . . . mundi, "Lamb of God, [You] who take away the sins of the world" (from the Mass).

80 seon, see.

80-83 the ilke eorre deme . . . to the skiwes, the same angry judge who is also a witness and knows all our crimes; beneath us, yawning, [is] the wide throat of hell; inside ourselves, our own conscience - that is, our interior knowledge - charring itself, with the fire of sin; outside of us, all the world blazing in dark flame up into the skies.

83-84 The sari sunfule thus biset . . . thenne? The sad sinful [person] thus surrounded - how will it go with him then (lit., how will [it] stand for him then)?

84-86 To hwuch of thes fowre . . . grureful over alle, To which of these four (i.e., justice, conscience, the judge, or hell) can he turn to (reflex.)? There is [nothing for him] but to hear the hard word (i.e., speech, sentence), the woeful word, the grisly word, gruesome above all [other words].

86 Ite, maledicti . . . angelis ejus, "Go, cursed ones, into eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels" (based on Matthew 25:41).

87 aweariede, cursed ones.

87-88 ut of min eh-sihthe . . . to his engles, out of my eye-sight into the eternal fire that was prepared for the fiend and for his angels.

88-90 Ye forbuhe monne dom . . . fur of helle, You avoided men's punishment (or, judgment) that I condemned man to - which was to live in travail and in pain on earth - and you will now, for that reason, have the devil's judgment (i.e., punishment), [you will] burn with him eternally in the fire of hell.

90-91 schulen the forlorene . . . agrisen, the lost [souls] will throw up such a howl that heaven and earth will (lit., may) both shudder grimly (or, horribly).

92 leofliche us leareth, teaches us lovingly.

92-94 Ascendat homo . . . carnifex, timor, "A man ought to arise before the tribunal of his own mind, if he considers this, that he must produce himself before the tribunal of Christ. The accuser Thought should be present; [as well as] the witness, Conscience; [and] the hangman, Fear" (Augustine, Sermons 351.4.7 [PL 38.1429]).

94-95 thenche mon . . . thisse wise, let a man think about Doomsday and judge himself here thus in this way.

95-96 Skile sitte as domes-mon . . . misliche sunnen, Reason should sit as a judge upon the judgment seat. After that let his thought's memory come forward, accuse him and arraign him of various sins.

96-97 Beal ami . . . dudest thear! [My] fine fellow, you did this there!

97-98 His in-wit beo i-cnawes . . . Soth hit is! Let his conscience admit to this (lit., thereto) and bear witness: "It is true!"

99-101 Cume forth th'refter . . . na mare, Let fear come forward after that by the judge's command who sternly commands: "Take [him], bind him tightly, for he is worthy of death. Bind each of his limbs (lit., to him each limb) that he has sinned with in such a way (lit., so) that he cannot sin with them anymore."

101-06 Fearlac haveth i-bunden him . . . othre fleschliche sares, Fear has bound him, when he does not dare stir towards sin for fear. Yet the judge - that is, reason - is not pleased, though he be bound and [though he] keep himself from sin, unless he atone for the sin that he committed (lit., wrought), and [Reason] calls forth pain and sorrow, and commands that sorrow thrash the heart within with painful contrition (or, remorse), in such a way, that it may afflict her (i.e., the heart), and torture the flesh on the outside with fasts and with other physical pains.

106-07 Hwa-se o thisse wise . . . seli, Whosoever judges himself here in this way, before the great Judgment, he is happy and blessed.

107-08 Non judicabit Deus bis in id ipsum, "God will not judge twice in the same [case]" (a loose paraphrase of Nahum 1:9).

108-09 "Nule nawt . . . twien i-demet, "Our Lord does not wish that a man be judged twice for one [and the same] thing."

109-10 i Godes curt . . . is i-cnawen, in God's court as [it is] in the shire [court], where [he] who denies well (i.e., makes effective denials) may be saved, and the person may be convicted who confesses.

110-11 Si tu accusas . . . vice versa, "If you accuse, God will excuse, and vice versa."

111-12 Yef thu wreiest te her . . . i-taht habbe, "If you accuse yourself here, God will defend you there," and clear [you] completely at the strict Judgment, provided that you judge yourself as I have taught.

113 ayein thet . . . swete, in compensation for [the fact] that the sin seemed sometimes sweet.

113-14 the spealeth "schrift," who/which means "confession."

114 Merarihtes, Merari's (Judith 8:1); Judas, Judah (Genesis 38:12 ff.).

115 ec, also; wivede o Thamar, had sex with Thamar (Genesis 38:12 ff.).

115-16 ba ha spealieth . . . ledene, they both mean one [and the same thing] in the Hebrew language (i.e., "bitterness" ).

116-17 Neometh nu yeorne yeme . . . dude of Merariht, Pay (lit., Take) now careful attention to the significance (or, meaning); I [will] say it briefly. Bitter pain and confession - the one must come from the other, as Judith did from Merari.

117-20 Ant ba beon somet i-feiet . . . ant Zaram, And both are joined together, as Judah and Thamar [were]. For neither is worth anything without the other, or [very] little - [without the other] they never give birth to Phares and Zara. [On the contrary,] Judah begot Phares and Zara on Thamar (i.e., both together brought them forth).

120 Phares divisio . . . interpretatur, "Phares is interpreted as 'division,' Zara as 'rising.'"

120-21 the gasteliche bitacnith . . . arisinde grace, which symbolizes spiritually separation from sin and after that, rising grace in the heart.

121-23 Fowr thinges . . . bittrin his heorte, Four things, if one considers that deadly sin caused them, may make him sorry for and embitter his heart.

123-26 Lo, this the forme . . . as he eathe mahte? Look, this [is] the first: if a man had lost in the space of a day his father and his mother, his sisters and his brothers, and all his kin, and all his friends that he ever had were killed suddenly, would he not be sorrowful and sad above (i.e., more than) all [other] men, as he easily (i.e., understandably) might?

126-30 Godd wat . . . ha beoth deade, God knows, he may be a great deal more sorrowful who has spiritually slain God within his soul with mortal sin, [and has] lost not only the sweet Father of heaven and St. Mary, his precious Mother, or Holy Church - when he [will] not have [anything] from her either less nor more - and the angels of heaven, and all holy saints who were to him formerly as friends, as brothers and as sisters. With respect to him they are dead.

130-31 As onont him is . . . of ham alle, As far as it concerns him (lit., as [it] is concerning him), he has slain them all, and has the hatred of them all, where they live forever.

132 Omnes amici . . . ei inimici, "All her friends have despised her; they have been made her enemies" (Lamentations 1:2).

133 "al thet him luvede . . . him alle," "everyone who loved him cry shame on him (i.e., shout at him in disgust)."

133-34 Yet mare . . . alle clane, Still more, as soon as he sinned mortally his children died quite completely (i.e., outright).

135-36 Yet upon al this ilke . . . of helle, Yet in all this same thing (or, matter) he himself is transformed from [being] God's child and [has] become the devil's child of hell (or, the devil of hell's child).

136 eatelich, hideous.

137 Vos ex patre diabolo estis, "You are of [your] father the devil" (John 8:44).

137-38 Thenche euch of his estat . . . siken sare, Let each one think of his condition, that he is or was in, and he may see the reason why (lit., wherefore) he ought to sigh heavily.

138-39 Luctum unigeniti . . . amarum, "Make for yourself a lamentation [as] for an only child, a bitter complaint" (Jeremiah 6:26).

139 man, moan, complaint.

139-40 as wif deth . . . asteorven, as a woman does for her only child (lit., for her child which she had none but him alone) and sees it killed suddenly before her.

140 other, second [example]; bihet, promised.

140-42 A mon the were i-demet . . . heorte stonden? [Take the case of] a man who was condemned for a wicked murder to be burned alive, or shamefully hanged - how would his heart stand (i.e., what would be the condition of his heart)?

142-44 Me thu . . . lei of helle, But you, wretched sinful [person], when you murdered by mortal sin God's spouse - that is, your soul - then you were condemned to be hanged on the burning gallows (lit., accursed-tree) in the eternal flame of hell.

145-46 Ther thu makedest . . . with the forlorene, There you made a pact with the devil for your death, and said with the lost in Isaiah.

146 Pepigimus cum morte fedus . . . pactum, "We have concluded an agreement with death, and have entered into a pact with hell" (based on Isaiah 28:15).

147 habbeth treowthe . . . mid helle, have plighted [our] troth to death, established an agreement with hell.

147-49 For this is the feondes chaffere . . . abuten ende, For this is the fiend's bargain: he would give you sin, and you [would give] him your soul, and your body as well, in woe and misery, world without end (i.e., forever).

149 scheortliche, briefly.

149-51 Thench - a mon the hefde . . . sari i-wurthen, Consider [the following case] - a man who had all the world in [his] power, and had lost everything in a moment because of his wickedness - how he would mourn and be sorry (i.e., full of regrets).

151-54 Thenne ahest tu . . . ant heovene, Then ought you to be a hundred times sorrier, [you] who by means of a mortal sin may lose the kingdom of heaven - may lose our Lord, who is a hundred times, indeed, a thousand thousand times better than is all the world, both earth and heaven.

154 Que enim conventio Christi ad Belial, "What [sort of] agreement [can there be] between Christ and Belial" (2 Corinthians 6:15).

154-57 yef the king hefde bitaht . . . scheomien ful sare? if the king had entrusted his dear son to his one knight (i.e., to one of his knights) to look after, and a foreign people led forth this child in his ward (or, guardianship) so that the child himself warred (or, made war) upon his father with the foreign people, would not this knight be sorry and be very painfully ashamed?

157 sunen, sons; kinges, (a possessive form, parallel to Godes).

158-59 the haveth bitaht . . . with sunne, who has entrusted each of us in guardianship to an angel. He is sorry (or, regretful) in His [own] way when a foreign people leads us away (leat = reduced form of leadeth) - when we anger our good Father with sin.

159-61 Beo we sari . . . uvele us stode, Let us be sorry that we ever must anger such a father and give pain to such a guardian, who defends (wit = reduced form of witeth) and protects us always against unhappy (i.e., cursed) spirits, for otherwise it would stand evil to us (i.e., it would go badly for us).

161-63 Ah we schuhteth him awei . . . us firseth, But we drive Him away when we do [any] deadly sin, and they (i.e., the wicked spirits) leap then up, as soon as He withdraws [from] us.

163-65 Halde we him neh us . . . of his servise, May we (i.e., let us) keep Him near us with the aroma of good works and [keep] ourselves in his guardianship. Christ knows, each one of us (ure = genitive form of we) bears too little honor to so gentle a guardian, and are not grateful enough (lit., know too little thanks to him) for His service.

165-66 hwi mon mei beo . . . sawle heale, why one may be bitterly sorry for his sins and weep very heavily. And well is him (i.e., opposite of "woe is him": he is happy) who may do so, for weeping is the soul's salvation (or, health).

167-68 me deth . . . i-paiet, one does to a bad debtor: [he] takes less than we owe him, and is nevertheless well pleased.

168 ahen him, owe Him.

168-69 ayein his blod . . . unefne change, against (i.e., in compensation for) His blood that He shed for us would be a completely uneven (or, unfair) exchange.

169-71 Ah wast tu hu . . . ant is wil-cweme, But you know how they say (lit., one says): "from a bad debtor one takes oats for wheat" (i.e., you take what you can get), and our Lord takes from us tears for (or, in compensation for) His blood, and is satisfied.

171-72 He weop o the rode . . . na muche wunder, He wept on the Cross, for Lazarus, for Jerusalem - for other men's sins. If we weep for our own, it is no great wonder.

172-74 "Wepe we . . . in helle," "May we weep (i.e., let us weep)," said the holy man in The Lives of the [Desert] Fathers, when people (lit., one) had long cried out to him for a sermon. "May we shed," he said, "tears lest (i.e., for fear that) our own tears scald us in hell."

175 i-hal, whole, complete; i-seid al . . . childhade, said completely to one man (i.e., the confessor), [all sins] from childhood [on].

175-77 The povre widewe . . . ut thenne, The poor widow, when she wants to clean her house, she gathers all the coarsest (or, largest) things in one pile first of all, and then thrusts (i.e., sweeps) it out.

177-79 Th'refter kimeth eft . . . al thet other, After that [she] comes back again and piles together again what was left before and thrusts it out after [the first]. After that, if it is very dusty (lit., if it dusts very much), she sprinkles water on the small dust and sweeps [it] out after all the other [sweepings].

179-82 Alswa schal the schriveth him . . . the heorte ehnen, Likewise must [the person] who confesses himself thrust out the smaller [sins] after the great [ones]. If the dust of light (or, wanton) thoughts flies up too thickly, let her sprinkle tears on them, then they will not blind the heart's eyes.

182-84 Hwa-se heleth ea-wiht . . . schulde on alle, Whosoever hides anything, he has not said anything for which he is the more blameless, but is like the man who has on him (i.e., on his body) many mortal wounds and shows the physician all [of them] and has [them] healed (passive inf.), except for one, which he dies from as he would have from all.

185-86 the haveth monie thurles . . . alle clane, which has many holes where the water rushes in, and they plug all but one [hole] through which (lit., whom) they all drowned utterly.

186-88 Me teleth of the hali mon . . . allegate seggen, One tells (i.e., they tell) of the holy man who lay in his mortal illness and was loath (or, reluctant) to say (i.e., confess) a sin from his childhood, and his abbot begged him to say it nevertheless.

188-90 thet hit nere na neod . . . th'refter sone, that there was not any need, because he was a little child when he did it. At last though, [it was] with difficulty by the abbot's loud pleading, that he said (or, declared) it and died quickly thereafter (see textual note to line 189).

190-92 com a niht . . . the forlorene, [he] came one night and revealed himself to his abbot in snow-white garments, like [a person] who was saved, and said that certainly, if he had not completely said (or, declared) in confession that very thing that he did in childhood, he would have been condemned among the lost.

193-94 Alswa of an-other . . . th'rof unschriven, Likewise [they tell] of another [man] who was nearly condemned (or, damned) because he had one time forced a man to drink and he died of it unconfessed.

194-98 the leafdi . . . yef he cuthe seggen, [it was] likewise with the lady because she had loaned one of her garments to a woman for a celebration (lit., wake; see glossary). But whosoever has diligently searched all the corners of his heart, and cannot wring [any] more out, if anything lurks there, it is (i.e., will be), I hope, swept out in confession with the rest, when no negligence lies (i.e., is) there, and he would willingly (lit., fain) say more if he could.

199 schal beo naket, must be naked.

199-200 naketliche i-maket . . . the werkes, made nakedly (i.e., completely), not explained away pleasantly, nor graciously adorned, but the words must be shown (i.e., revealed in confession) according to the acts.

200-01 Thet is tacne of heatunge . . . heateth swithe, It is a token of hatred, that one horribly torments (or, scorns - see tuk in glossary) the thing that one hates exceedingly.

201-02 Yef thu heatest . . . his fulthe? If you hate your sin (ti = reduced form of thi), why do you speak honorably about it (lit., thereof)? Why do you hide its filth?

202-04 Spec hit scheome schendfulliche . . . then schucke, Revile it (lit., speak shame to it) with disgrace, and scorn it terribly, just as you [very] well want to disgrace the devil (then = inflected def. art.).

204-05 "ich habbe i-haved leofmon . . . me-seolven," "I have had a lover," or "I have been," she says, "sinful (or, foolish) with myself."

205 Biclute, Dress up, prettify (imper.).

206-07 Do awei the totagges . . . stinkinde hore, Cast off (lit., Put away) the trimmings (or, ornaments). Unmask yourself and say, "Sir - God's grace! - I am a foul stud-mare (or, breeder), a stinking whore."

207-09 Yef thi fa . . . mei seggen, Give your foe a foul name and call your sin foul (fule is perhaps an adverb: "insultingly"). Make it stark-naked in confession - that is, do not conceal any bit of all (i.e., anything) which lies near it (lit., thereabout), though one can speak too foully (i.e., obscenely).

209-11 Me ne thearf nawt nempnin . . . wulle meanen, But it is not necessary (lit., it needs not) to name that foul deed by its own foul name, nor the shameful limbs by their own name[s] - it is enough to speak so that the holy confessor may understand clearly what you want to bemoan.

211-13 Abute sunne . . . cause, Six things lie around (i.e., are near to) sin [and] which conceal it, in Latin [these] may be called "circumstances," in English "trimmings" (or, trappings): person, place, time, manner, number [of occasions], cause.

213-16 Persone the dude the sunne . . . bicom me wurse, Uncover (i.e., reveal) the person who did the sin, or with whom one did it, and say, "Sir, I am a woman and should by right be more ashamed (i.e., modest) to have spoken as I spoke, or [to have] done as I did, therefore my sin is greater (lit., more) than [that] of a man, for it became (or, befit) me worse."

217-18 "a wummon thet me lefde . . . i-warnet," "a woman whom one (i.e., they) trusted so well," "a woman who has (lit., have; first person) before been burned with such a thing, and ought to be the better warned."

219 swuch mon, such [and such a] man; nempni, name [him] (imper.).

219-20 ant of thet ordre . . . as ich am, and of what order, "a wedded man," "an innocent thing," [or] "a woman as I am."

220-24 This is nu of persone . . . hali thing, This is now concerning person (i.e., the discussion of person is now ended). Likewise [speak] about the place, "Sir, I played thus or spoke in church," "went in the ring [dance] in the churchyard," "watched it or wrestling, and other foolish (or, evil) games," "spoke thus or played before (i.e., in the presence of) worldly men, before a recluse in an anchor-house, [or] at another window than I should have, near a holy thing."

224-25 "Ich custe him . . . ed te weovede," "I kissed him there," "touched him in such a place, or myself." "In church I thought thus (i.e., such and such)," "watched him at the altar."

226-27 ich wes of swuch ealde . . . ed chirche, I was of such an age that I ought well to have protected myself more wisely. "Sir, I did in Lent, on feast days, on holy days, when others were at church."

228-30 ant is the sunne mare . . . i swuch time, and the sin is greater than if I had been knocked down with force and many blows. "Sir, I was the beginning (i.e., instigator) why such a thing went forward (lit., had a forth-going), because I went to such [and such a] place and at such [and such] a time."

230-31 Ich bithohte me . . . no-the-leatere, I considered [it] (reflex.) very well before I ever did it, [I considered] how evil it would be to do and did it nevertheless.

232-35 The manere . . . al the wise, Say (or, describe) the manner also - that is, the fourth circumstance (or, trimming - see glossary). "Sir, I did this sin thus and in this way." "I learned it first thusly." "I first came into it (lit., therein) thusly." "Thusly I did it from that time on in thus many ways, thus foully, thus shamefully." "Thusly I sought pleasure, how I might most please the burning of my desire," and say completely the way (or, manner).

235-38 Tale is the fifte totagge . . . neode asketh, Number [of occurrences] is the fifth circumstance - tell completely how often it is done: "Sir, I have done this thus often, [I have been] wont to speak thus, to listen to such talk, to think such kinds of thought, to neglect things and forget [them], laugh, eat, drink, less or more than need requires (lit., asks)."

239-40 "Ich habbe i-beon . . . this ant this," "I have thus often been angry since I was last confessed, and for such [and such a] thing, and thus long it lasted, thus often [I have] said a lie, thus often [I have said] this and that."

240-41 "Ich habbe i-don this . . . feole sithen," "I have done this (i.e., such and such a thing) to thus many [people], and thus many times."

241 seste totagge, sixth circumstance.

241-43 Cause is hwi thu hit dudest . . . for flatrunge, Cause is why you did it, or helped others to it (lit., thereto), or by what [means] it began. "Sir, I did it for pleasure, for evil love, for [personal] gain, for fear, for flattery."

244-47 thah ther ne come nan of . . . min heorte, even though no [evil] came of [it] there. "Sir, my light (or, wanton) answer or my light expressions (or, behavior) attracted him first to me." "Sir, from this word came another, from this deed [came] wrath and evil words." "Sir, this is the reason why that evil lasts (i.e., persists) still." "My heart was weak thus (i.e., in this way)."

247-49 Euch, efter thet he is . . . as on urn, [Let] each, according to what he is, say his circumstances, a man as pertains to him, a woman whatever touches her. For here I have not said anything except to remind man or woman of those [circumstances] which fall to (i.e., are applicable to) them by means of those which are mentioned here as if in a gallop (i.e., in passing).

249-50 Thus of theose six . . . leareth, Thus strip your sin of these six veils (or, cloaks) and make it naked in your confession, as Jeremiah teaches.

250-51 Effunde sicut aquam cor tuum, "Pour out your heart like water" (Lamentations 2:19).

251 Sched, Pour.

251-54 Yef eoile schet . . . i thin heorte, If oil pours (or, is poured) out of a vat (schet = reduced form of schedeth), some of the liquid will remain. If milk is poured out, the color remains. If wine is poured out, the smell remains. But water goes out all together (i.e., leaves no traces): likewise pour out your heart - that is, [pour out] all the evil that is in your heart.

254-55 Yef thu ne dest nawt . . . Naum, If you do not do that, look, how horribly God Himself threatens you through Nahum.

255-56 Ostendam gentibus . . . abhominationes tuas, "I will reveal to the nations your nakedness and to kingdoms your shame and I shall throw down your abominations over you" (Nahum 3:5-6).

256-58 Thu naldest nawt unwreo . . . scheome sunnen, You did not want to uncover (i.e., reveal) yourself to the priest in confession, and I will show your wickedness completely naked, to all people, and to all kingdoms [I will show] your shameful sins.

259-61 ant trussin . . . torplin into helle, and [I will] load (or, tie - see trusse, trussin in glossary) all your disgraces on your own neck, as one does to the thief whom one leads (leat = reduced form of leadeth) to be judged (passive inf.), and so with all this (lit., the) shame you will pack off (i.e., depart - see trussen in glossary) and tumble into hell.

261-63 O . . . Sanies apparebit, "Oh," says St. Bernard, "what confusion, what disgrace [there] will be, when the leaves having been scattered and dispersed all wickedness will be stripped naked. The pus (or, corruption) will be revealed" (Geoffrey of Auxerre, Declamations from the Dialogue between Simon and Jesus Collected from the Sermons of St. Bernard 50.61 [PL 184.469]).

263-67 hwuch schendlac . . . i-bet her, what shame, and what sorrow [will] be there at the Judgment, when all the leaves will be flung down, and all the filth [will] reveal itself, and [will] wring (or, force) out the pus before all the wide world, [before] the inhabitants of earth and of heaven, not only [the pus] of deeds, but of idleness (i.e., things not done), of words and of thoughts which are not atoned for here.

267-68 Omne tempus . . . sit expensum, "All time spent will be demanded of you, how it was expended" (Anselm, Meditation 1 [PL 158.709 ff.]).

268-69 "Euc tide ant time . . . i-spenet," "Each time and occasion will be reckoned (or, counted up) there, how it was spent here."

269 Quando dissipatis foliis, et cetera, "When the leaves having been scattered," etc. (St. Bernard, see above).

270 "schulen beo towarplet," "will be pulled down."

270-72 he biheold . . . efter ham, he saw (lit., beheld) how Adam and Eve, when they had sinned in the beginning, gathered leaves and made coverings (or, clothes) out of them for their shameful members (lit., limbs). Many do thus in imitation of them (i.e., many behave just as they do).

272-73 Declinates cor suum . . . in peccatis, "Inclining their heart[s] to words of wickedness (or, cunning) to plead excuses in [their] sins" (adapted from Psalm 140:4).

274 ofte i-maket, made often; Sawter, Psalter.

274-75 Confitebimur . . . confitebimur, "We shall confess to You, Lord, we shall confess" (Psalm 74:2).

275 Eamus iterum in Judeam, "Let us go again into Judea" (based on John 11:7).

276 "Ga we eft," "Let us go again."

276-78 spealeth "schrift" . . . gan to schrifte, means "confession," and so we find that he went often out of Galilee into Judea. "Galilee" means "wheel," in order to teach us that we [should] often go from the world's turmoil and the wheel of sin to confession.

279 sacrement, (i.e., confession); weofdes sacrement, the sacrament of the altar (i.e., the Eucharist); fulluht, baptism.

279-80 thet te feond is lathest . . . i-cnawen, which is the most loathsome to the fiend (lit., enemy), as he himself has admitted to holy men - be it very much against his will (i.e., very unwillingly).

280-81 Wule a web . . . i-weschen? Will a woven fabric be well bleached (i.e., whitened) with one washing (lit., water) at one time? [Will] a soiled cloth [be] well washed?

281-84 Thu weschest thine honden . . . wesschen hire eanes! You wash your hands twice or three times in a single day, and you do not want [to wash] the soul, Jesus Christ's spouse - who the whiter she ever is, the more filth is visible upon her, unless she be washed - often you do not want to wash it [even] once in a week for God's embrace (i.e., to embrace God at the Eucharist)!

285 Confiteor, Prayer of confession (lit., "I confess").

285-87 beoden . . . heaved, prayers, holy thoughts, blessings, kneelings, every good word, every good work wash [away] small sins all of which one cannot declare. But confession is always the head (i.e., the chief thing).

288 on hihthe i-maket, made in haste.

288-89 yef sunne timeth . . . me slepe, if sin happens at night, [make your confession] at once or in the morning. If it happens by day, [make your confession] before you sleep (lit., earlier than one may sleep).

289-91 Hwa durste slepen . . . least wenen, Who would dare sleep while his mortal enemy held a drawn sword over his head? Those who nap on the brink of hell, they often tumble right in, before they least expect.

291-92 Hwa-se is i-fallen . . . arisen? Whosoever has fallen amidst the burning fire - is he not more than demented if he lies down, considers (lit., bethinks himself) when he will get up?

292-95 A wummon the haveth i-losed . . . seove dahes fulle! A woman who has lost her needle, or a cobbler his awl, seeks it immediately and turns (towent = reduced form of towendeth) each straw upside down until it is found - and God, lost through sin, will lie unsought fully seven days!

295-97 Nihe thinges beoth . . . other in helle, There are nine things which ought to rush [a person] to confession: the punishment (or, pain) which accrues interest, for sin is the devil's money which he gives out for usury and for the interest of punishment, and the longer one lies in his sin, the [more] the interest grows of pain in purgatory or here or in hell (lit., ever as one lies longer . . . so the interest grows).

297-98 Ex usuris et iniquitate, et cetera, "[He will redeem the poor and needy] from usuries and iniquity," etc. (Psalm 71:14).

298-99 The other thing . . . lic-wurthe, The second thing is the great and sorrowful loss that he (i.e., the sinner) suffers (lit., loses), that nothing that he does is pleasing to God.

299-300 Alieni comederunt robur ejus, "Strangers have consumed His strength" (Hosea 7:9).

300 thet he nat . . . asteorven, so that he does not know whether he will die suddenly that very day [or not].

301 Fili, ne tardes, "Son, do not delay [being converted to God]" (based on Ecclesiasticus 5:8).

301-03 The feorthe is secnesse . . . for his sunne, The fourth is sickness, so that he cannot think rightly, except about his malady alone, nor [can he] speak as he should, but [can only] groan for his ache, and grunt, more for his sudden pain (lit., stitch) than for his sin.

303 Sanus confiteberis et vivens, "[While] healthy and living you will confess (i.e., ought to confess)" (Ecclesiasticus 17:27).

303-05 The fifte thing . . . to healen, The fifth thing is the great shame that it is, after a fall to lie down so long, and particularly under the devil. The sixth is the wound that always worsens as time goes on (lit., in hand - see hond in glossary), and is more difficult (lit., stronger) to heal.

305-06 Principiis obsta . . . per longas, "Resist beginnings. A medicine is prepared too late when maladies [have gained strength] by long [delays]" (Ovid, Remedies for Love, 91-92).

306-10 uvel wune . . . in his sunne, evil habit, which Lazarus symbolizes, who stank - so long he had lain in the earth (ther = declined def. art.) - over whom our Lord wept, as the Gospel tells, and trembled and was stirred up (lit., stirred Himself), and cried loudly over him before He raised him, in order to show how difficult it is to rise up from an evil habit, [for the person] who rots in his sin.

310-11 Lazre stonc . . . of five! Lazarus stank after four days. How the sinful person stinks after four years or five!

311-12 Quam difficile . . . premit, "With what difficulty does he get up whom a mass of bad habit presses down" (Augustine, On the Gospel of John 49.10.24 [PL 36.1756]).

312-13 "hu earmliche . . . i-lein longe," "how poorly he arises, who has lain long under the habit of sin."

313 Circumdederunt me canes multi, "Many dogs have surrounded me" (Psalm 21:7).

314-16 Hwen gredi hundes . . . ofte smiten? When voracious dogs stand before the table, is there not a need for the cudgel (i.e., to beat the dogs)? As often as anyone of them snatches at you and robs you of your food, will you not strike as often?

316 Elles ha walden . . . hefdest, Otherwise they would seize (lit., catch) from you all that you had.

316-19 Ant tu alswa thenne . . . toward te, And you just so then take (imper.) the cudgel of your tongue, and as often as the hound of hell snatches any good [thing] from you, beat (imper.) him immediately with the cudgel of your tongue in confession, and beat him so viciously that it is hateful to him and [he] may dread (i.e., be afraid) to snap at you again.

319-21 Thet dunt . . . do thet ilke, That blow, of all blows, is to him the most hateful of blows. The dog which chews up (fret = reduced form of freteth) leather or kills (lit., worries - see a-wurieth in glossary) cattle - one beats (beat = reduced form of beateth) it immediately so that it may understand why it is beaten; then it does not dare to do the same again.

321-23 Beat alswa mid ti tunge . . . thucke, Beat (imper.) likewise with your tongue in confession the hound of hell immediately, and he will be afraid to do you such a trick.

323-24 Hwa is se fol . . . nawt yetten! Who is so foolish that he says concerning the dog that chews up leather, "Wait until tomorrow! Do not beat him yet!"

324 Ah, On the contrary [one should say]; anan-riht, immediately.

325-26 Nis thing i the world . . . up leatere, There is not anything in the world that smarts him (i.e., makes him smart) more painfully than does such a beating. As one wades deeper into the devil's marshy fen (i.e., swamp), so one comes out later (i.e., the deeper one wades into the devil's swamp, the longer it takes to come out again).

326 eahtuthe, eighth.

327 thet, what.

327-28 Peccatum quod per penitentiam . . . trahit, "A sin which has not been washed away by penitence, soon pulls by its weight in the direction of another [sin]" (Gregory, Moral Discourses on Job 25.9.22 [PL 76.334]).

328-30 thet nis sone i-bet . . . seolve moder, "which is not atoned for soon straightway draws (or, attracts) another," and that [sin] in turn [draws] the third, and so each one breeds more and worse offspring than the mother herself.

330 nihethe, ninth.

330-31 se he ear biginneth . . . purgatoire, the sooner he begins (lit., so he begins before) to do his penance here, the less (lit., so . . . the less) he has to atone for in the pain (or, punishment) of purgatory.

331-32 This beoth nu . . . on hihthe, These are now the nine reasons, and there are many more, why confession ought to be made always in haste.

333-35 ah to beon eadmod . . . hise wunden, ought to be humble, as the publican's was, not as the pharisee's was, who reckoned his good deeds and showed into view the healthy [part], when he should have uncovered his wounds (see Luke 18:9-14).

335 he wende unhealet, he departed (lit., turned) unhealed.

336-37 Eadmodnesse is i-lich . . . eaver forth, Humility is like these clever beggars (or, layabouts), [like] their festering sores (lit., sore), their running boils (lit., boil) which they always put into view.

337-38 eatelich . . . the reathere, hideous, they show it as still more hideous to rich men's eyes, so that they [will] have pity on them and give them goods (lit., good) the quicker.

339 Hudeth hare hale clath . . . totorene, They hide their whole (i.e., undamaged) clothe[s], and on the topmost [layer] of all put on over-garments completely torn up.

339-46 this ilke wise . . . for hire to biyeotene, just so, humility humbly (perhaps, happily - see textual note to line 340) fools our Lord and takes from His goods with blessed swindling: [humility] always hides her good, shows forth her poverty, puts forth her spreading sore, weeping and groaning before God's eyes, [humility] pleads continuously by His cruel suffering, by His precious blood, by His five wounds, by His mother's tears, by the very breasts that He sucked, the milk that nourished Him, by the love of all His saints, by the dear dalliance (or, love-token) which He has for His dear spouse - that is, for the pure soul, or for Holy Church - by His death on the Cross, [humility pleads by all these things] for her benefit (lit., for her to receive).

346-47 With thus ane-wil ropunge . . . hire cancre, With such stubborn (or, persistent) crying-out, [humility] pleads for some help for the wretch's hardship to administer medicine against the sickness, to heal her sore[s].

347-50 Ant ure Laverd . . . for-te yeovene, And our Lord, entreated thus, cannot for pity refuse her or cause her pain with a refusal - particularly so as He is so inordinately generous, that nothing is more preferable (or, dearer) to Him than that He may find a reason to give.

350-52 Ah hwa-se yelpeth . . . mare halinesse, But whosoever boasts of his goodness, as do these proud people in confession, what need is there to help them? Many a one has such a way to declare (lit., say) her sins that it is equal to a secret boast and [many a one] hunts after the reputation (lit., praise-word) of greater holiness.

353 scheomeful, full of shame.

353-55 bi thet te folc . . . passin to heovene, by the fact that the people of Israel departed out through the Red Sea, which was red and bitter, is symbolized that we must pass to heaven through red-faced (lit., ruddy) shame - that is, in true confession and through bitter penitence.

355-57 God riht is . . . Godes sihthe, Christ knows, it is quite right that we be ashamed (lit., that [it] shame us) before man, [we] who forgot shame when we did the sin before God's sight.

357 Nam omnia nuda sunt . . . sermo, "For all things are naked and open to His eyes, to whom our declaration (lit., speech) [must be made]" (Hebrews 4:13).

358 ehnen, eyes.

358-59 with hwam . . . ure deden, with whom we must reckon all our deeds.

359 measte deal, greatest part.

360 Verecundia pars . . . penetentie, "Shame (or, modesty) is the great part of penitence" (Pseudo-Augustine, Concerning True and False Penitence 10.25 [PL 40.1122]).

360-62 na deore-wurthe yim-stan . . . hise sunnen, no precious gemstone delights man so much to behold as the ruddiness of the face of a man who declares his sins rightly does (i.e., delights) God's eye.

363-65 haveth an i-licnesse . . . sawle withinnen, has a similarity outside to what it effects inside - as it is in baptism: the washing without (i.e., on the outside) betokens the washing of the soul within.

365-67 the cwike rude . . . i-rudet feire, the living red (or, complexion) of the face makes [us] to understand that the soul, which was gray (or, blackish blue) and had nothing but a dead color, has caught a living color and is reddened beautifully.

367-68 Interior tamen penitentia . . . solempnis, "Nevertheless interior penitence is not called a sacrament, but external or public or solemn [penitence is]" (source unidentified).

369 dredful, fearful; thet tu segge, so that you may say.

369-70 Quociens confessus sum . . . confessus, "As often as I have confessed, I seem to myself not to have confessed" (source unidentified).

370 i-schriven, confessed.

370-71 eaver me thuncheth . . . totagges, I always consider (lit., it seems to me) myself unconfessed," for something of the circumstances is always forgotten.

372 Ve laudabili . . . discutias eam, "Woe to the praiseworthy life of men, if mercy being taken away, You [O Lord] rigorously examine it (i.e., the praiseworthy life of men)" (Augustine, Confessions 9.13 [PL 32.778]).

373-74 yef ure Laverd . . . i-wurthen, if our Lord judged him completely according to justice, and not according to mercy, woe would be to him.

374 Set misericordia superexaltat judicium, "But mercy rises above justice" (based on James 2:13).

375 weieth . . . rihte nearewe, always weighs more than narrow (i.e., strict) justice.

376-77 Hwa-se seith as he con . . . bit na mare, Whosoever declares as he is able, and does all that he can, God asks no more (bit = reduced form of biddeth).

377 aa beon i-mengt, always be mixed.

377-78 This for-te bitacnin . . . twinnin, In order to symbolize this it was commanded in the old law that no one should separate the two grindstones.

378-80 The neothere . . . heardre, The lower [stone], which lies still and carries the heavy burden, symbolizes fear, which restrains (lit., ties, binds) one from sin, and is weighed down here with a hard thing in order to be free of [something] harder.

380-82 The uvere stan . . . muche mede, The upper stone symbolizes hope, which runs and busies itself (lit., herself) in good works always with the assurance of great reward.

382 Theos twa na-mon ne parti from other, Let no one separate these two from the other.

382-83 Spes sine timore . . . desperationem, "Hope without fear is rank in presumption (or, audacity). Fear without hope degenerates into desperation" (Pseudo-Gregory, Expositions in First Kings 5.20.11 [PL 79.332]).

384 maketh mon untrusten, makes one despair (or, lose trust).

384-85 maketh over-trusten, makes [one] become overly confident.

385-86 twa untheawes . . . edstearteth, two faults, lack of confidence and over-confidence, are the devil's traps (lit., hunting stations - see explanatory note), from which (lit., where) the wretched beast seldom escapes.

386-87 Triste is ther . . . ayein him, A hunting station is where one sits (i.e., lies in wait) with the greyhounds in order to try to catch the hare, or [where one] spreads the nets for it.

387-88 Toward an of theos twa . . . his nettes, Everything that he drives (or, hunts) is toward one of these two, for where are his greyhounds, there are his nets.

389 nest te yete of helle, nearest to (lit., next) the gate of hell.

390 wes Caymes schrift . . . forferden, was Cain's confession and Judas', for which reason they were destroyed.

391 unselies sahe . . . Sawter, the wicked person's saying, who says in the Psalter.

391-92 Secundum . . . queret, "[God] will not judge (or, examine) according to the multitude of His anger" (Psalm 9:25).

392-93 "Nis nawt Godd . . . Yeoi he," "God is not," she says, "so grim as you make him out [to be]." "No?" he says, David. "Yes he [is]."

393-94 Propter quid irritavit . . . requiret, "For what reason has the evil man angered God? For he has said in his heart, "He will not demand [it]" (Psalm 9:34).

394-96 On alre earst . . . as ye seggeth, First of all he calls the overconfident unbelieving (lit., unbelieved). "The unbelieving person, why does he provoke God almighty? For the reason that he says, "He will not judge as strictly as you say."

396-97 Yeoi, siker . . . i-evenet, Yes, surely but He will. Thus these two faults are compared to grim robbers.

398 reaveth Godd . . . rihtwisnesse, steals [from] God His right judgment and His righteousness.

399 milce, mercy.

399-400 Ant swa ha beoth . . . withuten milce, And so they (i.e., insecurity and presumption) are about it (or, are aiming) to destroy God Himself, for God could not be (or, exist) without righteousness, nor without mercy.

401-02 Nu thenne . . . fule wise? Now then, which faults are comparable (lit., a comparison) to these which seek (lit., want) to kill God in their foul way?

402-03 Yef thu art to trusti . . . thin tale, If you are too trusting and hold (or, believe) God [to be] too soft to avenge sin, [then] sin pleases Him, by your account.

403-09 Ah bihald hu . . . hare gruchunge ane, But look how He avenged in His high angel (i.e., Lucifer) the thought of a proud one, how He avenged in Adam the bite of an apple, how He sunk Sodom and Gomorrah, man and woman and child, the famous cities, all [together] a great county, down into the bottom of hell - where the Dead Sea is now in which there is nothing living - [look] how He in Noah's flood drowned all the world, except eight [people] in the ark, how He on His own people of Israel, His darling, grimly (or, fiercely) avenged Himself as often as they misbehaved: [for example,] Dathan (see Numbers 16:12), and Abiron (see Numbers 16:1), Core (see Numbers 16:1) and his companions, the others also that He slew by many thousands, often for their grumbling alone.

409-13 On other half loke . . . feier speche, On the other side (lit., half) look, if you have any doubt of His immeasurable mercy, how easily and how soon St. Peter, after he had forsaken Him, and that for a strumpet's word, was reconciled with Him, how the thief on the cross, who had always lived wickedly, in a twinkling had from Him mercy with a pleasant speech.

413-14 For-thi, bitweone theos twa . . . togederes, Therefore, with these two, lack of confidence (or, despair) and over-confidence, let hope and fear be always connected together.

415-16 to wis mon i-maket . . . sotte alde, made to a wise man - concerning unknown (or, unusual) sins, [confession ought] not [to be] to young priests - young, I say, of knowledge - nor to foolish old [priests].

416-17 Bigin earst . . . to the, Begin first at pride, and seek out all the branches of it as they are written above, [those] which fall (or, apply to) you.

417-19 Th'refter alswa of onde . . . moder, After that also of envy, and let us go thus downward, in order (lit., row by row), until [we come] to the last. And draw (or, gather) together all the brood [of sins] under the mother (i.e., the main sin).

420 soth . . . the-seolf, true: do not lie about yourself.

420-21 Qui causa humilitatis . . . peccator, "Whoever lies about oneself because of humility, is himself changed into (lit., made) what he was not before, that is, a sinner" (Augustine, Sermons 181.4.5 [PL 38.981]).

422-23 "The seith leas . . . ear nere," "Whoever tells a lie about himself through too much humility, he is made sinful, though he was not before."

423-24 Bonarum mentium . . . non est, "[It is the sign] of good minds to perceive fault where there is no fault" (Gregory, Letters 11.4.64 [PL 77.1195]).

424-25 Cunde of god heorte . . . he thurfte, It is the nature of a good heart to be afraid of sin where often none is," or to judge (lit., weigh) his sin sometimes more severely than he needed [to do].

425-26 Weien hit to lutel . . . guldene, To weigh it too little is as bad or worse. The middle way of moderation is always golden.

426-28 Drede we us eavre . . . to cweade, Let us always be afraid, for often we expect to do a little evil and do a great sin; often [we expect] to do well, and do all too wickedly.

428 Segge we eaver, Let us always say.

428-30 Etiam bonum nostrum . . . bonum, "Even our good is corrupt in a certain way, so that it cannot please, but on the contrary certainly can displease God" (Anselm, Meditation 1 [PL 158.709 ff.]). Paul: "I know that no good is in me, that is in my flesh" (based on Romans 7:18).

430-31 nis of us, is from us (double negative).

431 ure ahne, our own.

431-35 Godes god . . . to lutel, When I do God's good," he, St. Anselm, says, "in some way my evil thus gnaws it up: either I do it ungladly, or too early, or too late, or think too highly of it, though no one knows about it, or [I] would want that someone knew about it, or [I] do it carelessly, or too unwisely, too much or too little."

435-36 Thus eaver sum uvel . . . mislikin ofte, Thus some evil always mingles itself with my good which God's grace gives me, so that it can please God [very] little, and displease [Him] often.

436-37 Hwen the hali mon seide . . . wrecches? When that holy man said such a thing about himself, indeed how should we wretches say it about ourselves?

438 ah to beon willes, ought to be voluntary (or, willing).

438-39 willeliche, unfreinet . . . uneasket, [given] willingly, unasked for, not drawn from you as if against your will (see un-thonckes in glossary). While you can say anything [you want], say everything unasked.

439-40 Me ne schal easki . . . the wisre, One must not ask anything, except for necessity alone, for evil may fall (i.e., occur) from the asking unless it be the wiser (i.e., is managed very carefully).

441 moni mon . . . te nede tippe, many a man waits (abit = reduced form of abideth) to confess himself until calamity (lit., need) strike[s].

441-44 him liheth the wrench . . . him-seolf sette, the trick deceives him so that he cannot [confess] when he wants, who did not want to when he could. There is no greater foolishness than to set God a deadline, as though grace were his (i.e., already in his possession) as though he would carry it (i.e., grace) in his purse to take out the grace inside (lit., therein) at the deadline which he himself set.

444-46 Nai, beal ami . . . th'refter lokin, No, good friend, no. The deadline is in God's hand, not in your control. When God offers it to you, reach out both hands, for [should He] withdraw His hand, you might look (or, search) afterwards [and never find it!].

446 other other-hwet ned te to schrifte, or something else (lit., other-what) compels (ned = reduced form of nedeth) you to confession.

447 Coacta servicia Deo non placent, "Forced services do not please God" (see Pseudo-Augustine, Sermons to Brothers in the Desert 30 [PL 40.1289]).

447-48 Servises i-nedde ne cwemeth nawt, Services compelled do not please.

448 thah no-the-leatere . . . no, though nonetheless, one is better than none.

448-49 Nunquam sera penitentia si tamen vera, "Penance [is] never too late if [it is] true for all that" (exact source unidentified).

449 sothliche i-maket, made truly (or, in truth).

450-51 Refloruit caro mea . . . confitebor ei, "My flesh has flowered (or, flourished) again and by my [own free] will I confess to him" (Psalm 27:7).

451-52 is i-fluret . . . Godd willes, has flowered, become completely new, for I will confess myself and praise God willingly.

452-53 to bitacnin wil-schrift . . . flures, to symbolize willing confession, for the earth quite unforced and the trees also open themselves and bring forth various flowers.

453-54 In Canticis . . . terra nostra, In Canticles: "flowers have appeared in our land" (condensed from Song of Songs 2:12).

454-56 Eadmodnesse, abstinence . . . smeallinde flures, Humility, abstinence, a dove's peacefulness, and other such virtues are fair in God's eyes, and sweet in God's nose, fragrant flowers (see textual note).

456-57 Of ham make his herbearhe . . . wunien, Make (imper.) His lodging out of them within yourself, for His delight, He says, is to dwell there.

457-58 Et delicie mee . . . Proverbiorum, "And My joy [is] to be with the sons of men" - in the book of Proverbs (Proverbs 8:31).

459 ahne, one's own.

459-60 Na-mon ne schal . . . he mei, No one should accuse in confession anyone but himself, as far as he can.

460-62 This ich segge . . . ha wreie othre, I say this because such an accident happens (or, will happen) to some man or some woman so that she cannot fully accuse herself, unless she accuse the other.

462-64 Ah bi nome . . . nan other, But let her not call the same person by name, nonetheless, though the confessor may know [very] well towards whom it turns (i.e., about whom it is) - but [rather] "a monk," or "a priest," not "William" or "Walter," though there be no other [priest or monk].

465-67 stude-vest to halde the penitence . . . do the penitence, steadfast to keep to the penitence and leave the sin so that you may say to the priest: "I have [it] steadfastly in thought and in heart to abandon this sin and to do the penitence."

467-70 The preost ne schal . . . ayein to schrifte, The priest must not ask you if you will from then on (lit., thenceforth) renounce your sin; [it] is enough that you say that you have it in heart to do [so] faithfully through God's grace, and if you fall back into it (lit., therein), that you will immediately rise up through God's help and come again to confession.

470 Vade et amplius noli peccare, "Go and sin no more" (John 8:11).

471 have wil thet tu nult sungi, have the desire that you will not sin.

471-72 Thus ne easkede he nan other sikernesse, In this way, he did not ask for any other pledge (or, assurance).

473 bithoht bivore longe, considered a long [time] before.

473-76 gedere thine sunnen . . . in euch ealde, gather the sins of all your ages - from childhood, from youth gather everything together. After that gather the places that you lived in, and think carefully what you did in each place separately and in each age.

476-78 Th'refter sech al ut . . . bi tiden, After that seek out everything and track down your sins according to your five senses, after that by all the [bodily] members in which you have sinned most or most often. Finally, [track down your sins] separately by days and by times.

479-81 Nu ye habbeth alle i-haved . . . on hunger, Now you have had, as I understand, the sixteen pieces (or, sections) which I promised to divide, and I have broken apart each of them for you, my dear sisters, as one does for children, who might die of hunger on unbroken bread.

481-82 Ah me is . . . edfallen, But many a crumb has fallen from me - that you know (or, as you know)!

482 ha beoth sawle fode, they are the soul's food.

483 Thulli schrift, Such confession; stucchen, parts; the ilke muchele mihten, the same great powers.

485 deore-wurthe over gold . . . Ynde, [such powers are] precious beyond (i.e., more precious than) gold ore, and gems from India.

486-87 this fifte dale . . . i this dale, this fifth part, which is about confession, applies to all men (or, people) alike; therefore, do not wonder (lit., do not wonder yourselves) that I have not spoken to you specifically in this part.

488 Habbeth thah to ower bihove, Have (imper.) however for your profit.

488-99 Of alle cuthe sunnen . . . enbrevet on his rolle, [Let her confess herself] of all well-known (or, common) sins, such as of pride, of a haughty or a high (i.e., arrogant) heart, of envy, of wrath, of sloth, of carelessness, of idle words, of undisciplined thoughts, of some idle listening, of some false gladness, or of heavy mourning, of hypocrisy, of too much or too little food or drink, of grumbling, of fierce looks, of broken silences, of sitting (lit., to sit) for a long time at the window, of [canonical] hours said wrongly without attention of heart, or in the wrong time, of some false words, of swearing, of playing, of violent (lit., shaken) laughter, of spilling crumbs or ale, of letting things spoil, rust or rot, [of leaving] clothes unsewn, rained on, unwashed, breaking a cup or dish, or attending carelessly to anything which one handles (lit., fares with) or [which one] ought to pay attention to, of cutting (or, gashing), of hurting, through inattention - of all the things in this rule which are done wrong, of all such things let her confess herself each week once at the least, for none of these [sins] is so small that the devil has not recorded on his roll.

499-501 Ah schrift hit schrapeth of . . . wontin, But confession scrapes it off (i.e., erases it), and makes him lose much of his time. But everything that confession does not scrape off, everything he will most certainly read on Judgment Day in order to accuse you with [it]: not one word will be missing there.

501-03 Nu thenne, ich reade . . . cleanliche, Now then, I advise, give him the least to write that you ever can, for no occupation is more preferable to him, and whatsoever he write[s], be busy to scrape it off clean.

504 matin, to checkmate, defeat.

504-05 of swucche . . . bifalleth, of such external (or, venial) sins which happen to everyone.

505-07 Ah ful trusti ha schal beon . . . deathes dute, But she must be very secure in the priest's goodness to whom she reveals [everything] completely, how she fares (i.e., how it is with her) concerning the flesh's temptations, if she is so tempted - except in fear of death.

507-09 Thus, thah, me thuncheth . . . theafunge, However, it seems to me that she may speak in this way: "Sir, the temptation of the flesh that I have - or have had - comes too far on me (i.e., goes to far with me) by my own consent.

509-10 Ich am ofdred . . . efter licunge, I am afraid lest (or, for fear that) I go driving my foolish thoughts, foul at times, too quickly forward sometimes, as though I hunted after pleasure.

511-12 schaken ham ofte of me . . . umben, shake them often from me if I were quickly and stalwartly about [it].

512-13 Ich am offearet sare . . . skiles yettunge, I am sorely afraid that the delight in the thought [may] often last too long, so that it may come close (lit., nigh) to the reason's consent.

513-14 Ne dear ich . . . thunche wunder, I would not dare [to advise] that she confess herself more deeply or openly to a young priest in this matter (lit., hereabout), and even concerning this (i.e., as much as I have suggested above) it would seem strange (or, monstrous).

514-18 Ah to hire ahne schrift-feader . . . hercneth hire sunnen, But let her to her own confessor, or to some man of holy life, if she can have [access to] him, empty out the whole pot, let her spew (or, vomit) out there (i.e., in confession) all that monstrosity, let her there upbraid (or, mistreat) that filth, according to what it is, with foul words, quite horribly, so that she might fear that she hurt[s] his ears who listens to her sins.

518-19 Yef ei ancre nat nawt . . . he slepe, If any anchoress does not know of such things, let her thank Jesus Christ earnestly, and keep herself in fear. The devil is not dead, that she should know (i.e., let her know that), though he may sleep.

520-21 Lihte gultes . . . mid preoste, Atone for small offenses (lit., light guilts) immediately in this way by yourself, and nevertheless declare them in confession when you think of them as you speak with the priest.

521-22 For the leaste of alle . . . eorthe, For the least of all [offenses], as soon as you perceive it, fall (imper.) to the ground before your altar in [the shape of a] cross (ther = declined def. art.).

522-23 Mea culpa! "My fault" (from the prayer of confession).

523 Ich gulte! I am at fault!

523-24 The preost ne thearf . . . theos riwle, The priest need not on account of any offense, unless it be the greater, lay other penance on you than the life which you lead according to this rule.

525-28 dest, ant al thet uvel . . . thine sunnen, do, and all the evil that you ever suffered for the love of Jesus Christ within your anchor-walls, I enjoin (or, charge) everything on you, I lay everything upon you in the remission, of these and forgiveness of all your sins.

528-31 Ant thenne sum lutles i-hweat . . . other leasse, And then he can lay upon you some little something (i.e., a small penance), such as a Psalm or two, "Our Fathers," "Aves" (i.e., Hail Marys), ten or twelve. Let him add disciplines (i.e., physical mortifications) to [them], if it seems [appropriate] to him. According to the trappings (or, circumstances) which are described above, he must judge the sin [to be] greater or less.

531-33 A sunne ful foryevelich . . . into the seste, A very forgivable sin can become quite mortal through some evil trapping (or, circumstance) which lies beside it (lit., there-beside). After confession it is fitting (lit., falls) to speak of penance - that is, amends - and so we have an entrance into the sixth from this fifth part.



    The bulk of this section is taken up with a description of confession and its attributes. Confession, called "schrift" in AW, is one stage in a three-step system which includes 1) contrition of heart, 2) confession of mouth (to a priest), 3) restitution (or, penance - in the specific sense). The priest grants absolution with the formula, "I absolve thee." In The Solitary Self, Linda Georgianna sketches out the contemporary controversies surrounding this system and places AW in the middle of two extreme positions. The "contritionists" believed that private contrition alone could bring forgiveness, while the "post-contritionists" placed much more emphasis on confession of mouth to a priest, who alone could grant absolution (pp. 96-119). Georgianna points out that AW, on the one hand, stresses the importance of oral confession in its analysis of Judith and Holofernes (see 5.5 ff.), but on the other hand tends to de-emphasize the role of the priest in the anchoresses' confessions - he appears mainly as an observer rather than an active investigator, and he is not to lay any penance on the anchoresses beyond the daily penance of their austere lives (see 5.521 ff.). Furthermore, AW passes over the stages after confession, restitution and absolu-tion, only very briefly near the end of Part Five. As Georgianna notes, "By emphasizing both the self-reflection and oral confession, the Wisse author combines the most psychologically useful aspects of both contritionist and postcontritionist thought" (pp. 115).
    AW's concern with confession fits in with its early thirteenth-century origin. In 1215, the Fourth Lateran Council made yearly confession mandatory (Canon 21): "Every Christian of either sex after reaching the years of discretion shall confess all his sins at least once a year privately to his own priest and try as hard as he can to perform the penance imposed on him" (Rothwell, pp. 654-55). Priests were enjoined to inquire "into the circumstances both of the sinner and of the sin, from which to choose intelligently what sort of advice he ought to give and what sort of remedy to apply" (Rothwell, p. 655). To meet the needs of confessors a new array of manuals and treatises on all aspects of the penitential system were produced (Georgianna, p. 99), and Parts Four and Five of AW have many points of contact with contemporary Latin handbooks. For a useful summary of current scholarship on confession before and after the Fourth Lateran Council, see Peter Biller's "Confession in the Middle Ages" in Handling Sin: Confession in the Middle Ages, ed. Peter Biller and A. J. Minnis (Woodbridge, Suffolk: York Medieval Press, 1998), pp. 1-33, and L. E. Boyle's "Summae confessorum."
    After the sometimes hard-to-follow organization of Part Four, it comes as something of a relief that Part Five has such a simple structure.


    Introduction (5.1-4). The introduction divides the section into two basic parts: 1) the power confession has, and 2) what confession should be (i.e., the attributes of proper confession).
    Power of Confession (5.5-52). This section treats the six powers of confession: three against the devil: 1) it chops off his head, 2) puts his army to flight, 3) deprives him of his land, and three in the penitent: 1) it washes the filth of sin away, 2) restores what we lost through sin, and 3) makes us into God's children. Most of the powers are illustrated with Old Testament exempla suitably allegorized.
    Sixteen Attributes of Confession (5.52-485). The sixteen traits are first outlined (5.54-57) and then dealt with in turn: confession should be accusing (5.58-112), bitter (5.113-74), complete (5.175-98), naked (5.199-273), made often (5.274-87), made in haste (5.288-332), humble (5.333-52), full of shame (5.353-68), made in fear (5.369-75), hopeful (5.376-414), wise and made to a wise man (5.415-19), true (5.420-37), willing (5.438-58), one's own (5.459-64), steadfast (5.465-72), and considered beforehand (5.473-78). The section concludes with a summary of the six powers of confession (5.483-85).
    Notes on Confession Specifically for Anchoresses (5.486-533). Since the sixteen attributes of confession could apply to any believer, the author gives advice directed specifically toward anchoresses. After listing a number of lapses ranging from the seven deadly sins to practical problems such as letting food go moldy and clothes unrepaired (5.488-501), the author recommends that the anchoress confess at least once a week (5.498) and then suggests various ways to confess without revealing details to a priest who may himself be vulnerable to temptation (5.504-19). The priest should not lay much penance (i.e., restitution) on an anchoress, since her life alone is penance enough (5.520-33).
    Transition to Part Six (5.532-33). The sixteen attributes of confession, in a different form, appear in a mnemonic verse found in several manuscripts, and are also treated similarly in the Moralities on the Gospels (see Explanatory Note to 5.54 ff.).

9 ff. i Judithe deden. As Georgianna notes, in the allegory of Judith as confession, "Not only is the sequence of events muddled, but also the parallels between the events of the story and the acts of confession are unclear" (p. 106). First of all, the hacking off of Holofernes' head seems to represent contrition (see 5.13-14), while the showing of the head to the priests is confession itself, which puts the devil's army to flight. This sequence causes problems since contrition alone should not have the power to cut off the devil's head (see the headnote to Part Five), and a bit later, it seems that "the devil's head is only cut off and 'trampled on' after or as it is shown forth to the priest in confession" (p. 106). As Georgianna observes, "By continually rearranging the events of his story the author suggests that the drama of confession is not a linear story but a circular one. Each 'event' includes all the others. Confession is not several acts, but only one" (p. 107).

14 schrift on heorte. Baldwin suggests that "confession in heart" must refer to the intention of going to confession of mouth, since confession which takes place only in the heart is not complete ("Some Difficult Words," p. 278).

54 ff. Schrift schal beo. The Moralities on the Gospels also assigns sixteen qualities to confession, as Dobson points out (pp. 152-65), though in a different order, quoting a mnemonic verse which appears in other manuscripts:

Que [sc. Confessio] cuiusmodi debeat esse ex dicendis advertas. Versus:
Integra, certa, frequens, humilis, cita, fusa rubore,
Plena metus, discreta, volens, sua, nuda, morosa,
Fidens, vera (prius totum, post singula signans),
Accusans et amara rei confessio fiat.
(Dobson, Moralities, p. 152)

[Notice from (the following) sayings what confession of this kind must be. Verses:/ Whole, certain, frequent, humble, quick, spread over with blushing (or, shame),/ Full of fear, separate, willing, one's own, naked, fastidious,/Faithful, true (every [sin committed] before, afterwards noting single [sins]),/Accusing and bitter let the confession of a thing be.]

Such mnemonic lists are commonplace in pastoral and confessional materials.

60 Thus Eve ant Adam wereden ham. See Genesis 3:12-13. For a number of specific source attributions in the following passages, see Savage and Watson's helpful notes (pp. 388 ff.).

70-73 Hinc erunt accusancia peccata . . . se premet. For further references to Anselm's terrifying Meditation 1, see Explanatory Note to 3.296-97.

117 thet an mot cumen of the other. Georgianna notes that the "Juda-Thamar marriage tie makes clear that neither sorrow nor confession is meaningful without the other" (p. 107).

169-70 me nimeth ed uvel dettur aten for hweate. Proverbial. See Whiting, D118.

172-74 Vitas Patrum . . . in helle. This anecdote comes from the Verba Seniorum section of The Lives of the Desert Fathers 5.3 (PL 73, col. 861) under the heading "On Compunction" and is told of Macarius (see Explanatory Note to Pref.99-101): "The old men asked him to say a word to the brothers. When [Macarius] heard this, he said, 'Let us weep, brothers, and let tears gush out of our eyes, before we go to that place where our tears shall burn our bodies'" (Ward, The Sayings of the Desert Fathers, p. 136).

175 ff. The povre widewe. The comparison between sweeping out dust and making a good confession was probably a commonplace of penitential literature and popular preaching. Dobson points to a loose parallel in Moralities on the Gospels: "And so conscience is like a material house. You know that if any head of the house would instruct his servant girl to clean his house with a broom, and afterwards to throw out even the smallest dust, if she did not obey his instructions, certainly he would beat her. The head of the house is the spirit, moreover this servant girl is flesh; thus, the spirit instructs the flesh to clean his house (that is the conscience) with a broom (that is the tongue) from the filth of sin. Afterwards she sprinkles water (that is penitential tears) over it, so that through penitential tears even the smallest circumstances (or, details) of sin are dissolved. . . . Thus by this said method, after the dirt of vices has been ejected from the floor of the conscience, and the dust of carnal desire has been removed, the conscience is restored to its pristine state" (p. 160).

182 ff. Of this series of warnings, Savage and Watson observe, "Exempla such as these, warning of the dire consequences of failing to confess, or of failing to do so in the proper way, formed a vital part of the propaganda surrounding the institution of confession as a sacrament, and continued to be found useful in the literature of confession" (p. 389n25).
211 Abute sunne liggeth six thing. This phrase shows an etymological understanding of the word circumstances (line 212), which describes things "standing around" something else. The English translation of circumstance is totagge "something tagged or pinned on something else" - see the glossary. These circumstances (who, what, how, where, why, when, through whom, how often) are found in a number of manuals for confessors (see Savage and Watson, p. 390n27 for a list of analogues).

216 ff. Ich am "an ancre," "a nunne," "a wif i-weddet," "a meiden." This "fill-in-the-blank" list implies that Part Five is intended for a general (female) audience. See Explanatory Note to 5.486.

220 "a ladles thing," "a wummon as ich am." Apparently a reference to homoeroticism. See Judith C. Brown, Immodest Acts: The Life of a Lesbian Nun in Renaissance Italy (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986).

224-25 "hondlede him i swuch stude, other me-seolven." The penitential handbooks assigned various penances for sexual sins such as masturbation. See Pierre Payer's Sex and the Penitentials: The Development of a Sexual Code, 550-1150 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1984).

251 Yef eoile schet of a feat. Dobson advances a parallel to this comparison from Moralities on the Gospels: "Again, therefore, Jeremiah teaches with these words how one should proceed with the flowing of penitential waters: 'Pour out your hearts like water in the sight of God.' By water the sinner or his sins are understood. . . . Afterwards, when water is poured out fully, no taste or smell of it remains. God wants sin to be poured out in confession in just this way, so that no taste or smell of it may remain" (pp. 161-62).

276 ff. For these etymologies, see Pseudo-Jerome's On Hebrew Names (PL 23, col. 1218).

360 ff. Ant Sein Bernard seith. Savage and Watson (p. 391n41) trace this thought to Bernard's Sermons on the Octave of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary 10 (PL 183, col. 435).

385 ff. the deofles tristen. See the glossary for an explanation of tristen "traps, hunting stations." The AW plays on the similarity between this word and various forms of trust.

391-92 The reference to Psalm 9 is particularly appropriate to this discussion since the image of hunting in 5.386-89 seems to be inspired by, or suggestive of Psalm 9:30: "He lies in ambush in dark places like a lion in his den; he lies in wait to catch the helpless man; he seizes and drags the helpless one into his net."

483-84 haveth the ilke muchele mihten thet ich earst seide. See 5.5 ff., though as Savage and Watson point out, the three powers of confession against the world have not been treated, "nor is it clear what they are" (p. 392n57).

486 this fifte dale . . . limpeth to alle men i-liche. Most of Part Five was written with a general audience in mind (see Explanatory Note to 5.216 ff.), and may indicate that the AW author expected his treatise to circulate more widely among laypeople or that confessors might use it in their pastoral work. Savage and Watson note that Part Five "would also have been useful for the anchoresses in directing the spiritual lives of their maids" (p. 392n58).



1 Twa thinges neometh yeme. MS: Twa þinges neomed 3eme. The scribe writes neomed for neomeð, a common mistake. [Cleo.: Twa þinges neomeð 3eme; Titus: Twa þinges nimes 3eme; Nero: Of two þinges nimeð 3eme; Vernon: Two þinges nymeþ 3eme; Pepys: two þinges nymeþ 3eme of schrift; Caius: (T)wa þinges nimeð geme (initial missing).]

8 Either haveth hise threo. MS: Eider haueð hise þreo. Again, the scribe writes a d for a ð. [Cleo.: Eiðer haueð his þreo; Titus: And eiðer haueð his þreo; Nero: Aiðer haues his þreo; Vernon: Eiþer haueþ his þreo; Pepys (lacking); Caius: Eyþer haued his þreo.]

18-19 Thenne fli[t]h his ferd anan as dude Olofernes: his wiheles. MS: þenne flih his ferd anan as dude olofernes his wiheles. The text now reads, "then flee his army at once as Holofernes did his wiles" - a confused sentence. Tolkien sensibly suggests, on the basis of Cleo. and Vernon, that the scribe has omitted an ð after flih, as well as a punctuation mark after olofernes (p. 154, fol. 81v, line 15). With these changes, the text reads, "then his army flees at once just as Holofernes did; his wiles. . . ." Corpus' text falters unless the following phrase is altered (as it is in Nero), to make Judith the subject of dude. [Cleo.: þenne flið his ferd anan as dude olofernes. his wi3eles; Titus: þenne fleos his ferd anan as did olofernes. His wrenches; Nero: þeonne vlih his ferde anon; ase dude iudit olofernes. and his wi3eles; Vernon: þenne flihþ his feerde anon as dude Oloferne. his wiles and his wrenches; Pepys (recast): þan he flei3eþ and alle his wrenches and alle his wiles as Iudif (sic) dude Oloferne; Caius: þenne flið is ferde anam as dude olofernes. his wiheles; Vitellius: Dunqe senfuit son host sicome fist lost holoferne. Ces sunt ses engins; Trinity (recast): E en apres est li host au diable destruit e destret par confession; Lat.: Tunc statim fugi eius excercitus sicut Olofernis.]

30 the sunfule mon. MS: þe sunfule lond mon. The scribe first wrote and then canceled lond ("land"), a mistaken insertion from the previous passage which describes how confession takes away the devil's land.

31-33 This beoth nuthe threo thing [thet schrift deth o the deovel. The other threo thing] thet hit deth us-seolven - thet beoth theose her-efter. MS: þis beoð nuðe þreo þring þet hit deð us seoluen. þet beoð þeose her efter. As Tolkien observes, þring is a clear mistake for þing (p. 155, fol. 82r, line 5), but Corpus also omits a phrase (probably due to eye-skip from the first þreo þing to the second) contained in the other versions. The missing phrase is necessary for the sense and is restored here from Cleo. [Cleo.: þis beoð nu þreo þing þet schrift deð o þe deouel. þe oðere þreo þing þet hit deð us seoluen. beoð þeose þerefter; Titus: Þise beon þre þinges. þet schrift dos o þe deouel. Þe oðer þreo þinges þet hit dos un us self arn her iwriten after; Nero: þis beoð nu þreo þinges þet schrift deð oþe deouel. þe oðer þreo þinges ðet hit ðeð on us seoluen; beoð þeos her efter; Vernon: þis beoþ nou þreo þinges; þat schrift deeþ o þe deuel. þe oþer þre þinges þat hit deeþ us seluen; beoþ þeos heer aftur; Pepys (lacking); Caius: þis beod nu þreo þing. þat shritft ded oþe deoule. þe oðre treo þing þat hit ded us seoluen beod her efter; Vitellius: Ces sunt ore trois choses qe confession fet al diable. les altres trois choses qele fait a vous meismes; sunt cestes ici apres; Trinity: Ore vus ai ieo dit les treis uertuz ke confession fet encontre le diable. les autres treis choses ke confession fet e countre nos meimes sunt cestes. ke ioe uus dirrai ore; Lat.: Premissa tria facit confessio contra diabolum. Alia tria que facit in nobis sunt hec.]

37-38 et exuit se vestimentis sue viduitatis. MS: et exuit se uestimentis sue uidue/tatis. As Tolkien notes, "uidue/tatis, sic (but e altered from i)" (p. 155, fol. 82r, line 11). [Cleo.: et exuit se uestimentis uiduitatis; Titus: et exuit se uestimentis sue uiduitatis; Nero: et exuit se uestimentis uiduitatis; Vernon: et exuit se uestimentis sue iocunditatis!; Pepys: et exuit se vestimentis viduitatis; Caius: et exuit se uestimentis viduitatis; Vitellius: et exuit se de uestimentis sue viduetatis; Trinity: Exuit se inquit iudith uestimentis uiduitatis sue; Lat.: depositis vestibus viduitatis.]

40 This wes bitacnet thurh thet Judith schrudde hire. MS: þis wes bitacnet þurh þet dauið schrudde hire. The scribe or a reader noted the mistake here by putting a faint squiggle over dau. The correct reading is Judith, as the context bears out.

48-49 MS: ba ha spealieð an; on ebreische ledene. Tolkien suggests lacking sense here: "sic; the 'interpretation' bitternesse omitted or replaced by an" (p. 159, fol. 84r, lines 7-8), a notion supported by the other MSS. However, the passage makes sense if an is interpreted as "one and the same thing," and thus may be a legitimate revision. [Cleo.: ba ha speleð bitternesse on ebreisse ledene; Titus: baðe ha spelen bitternesse on ebreische leodene; Nero: boð heo spelieð bitternesse; o ebreu; Vernon: merariht and Thamar. boþe heo spelen bitternesse. on Ebrewes speche; Pepys (lacking); Caius: ha spelied bitternesse on ebreisse leodene; Vitellius: ambedous dient atant come amertume en ebreu; Trinity: E merai e thamar dient au tant com amertune; Lat.: Ambo autem Merari et Thamar in Hebreo interpretantur 'amaritudo.']

54-55 eadmod, scheomeful, [dredful], hopeful. MS: Eadmod. Scheomeful. Ho/peful. Tolkien correctly notes that dredful has been omitted after scheomeful (p. 156, fol. 82v, lines 7-8). [Cleo.: Edmod. Scheomeful. Dredful ant hopeful; Titus: Eadmod. Schomeful. dredful. Hopeful; Nero: edmod. scheomeful. dredful. and hopeful; Vernon: meokeful. schomeful. Dredeful. and hopeful; Pepys (lacking); Caius: Eadmod. Shemeful. Dredful. and hopeful; Vitellius: humble. hountouse. pourouse. et esperante; Trinity: Li setime est; ke ele seit umble. Li oitime est; ke ele seit hontouse. Li nouime est; ke ele seit pourouse. Le dime est ke ele soit oue ferme esperance de auoir pardon; Lat.: humilis, pudorosa, timorosa, spe subnixa.]

57 ant we [schulen] of euch-an sum word sunderliche seggen. MS: ant we of euchan sum word sunderliche seggen. Tolkien: "wule omitted after word" (p. 156, fol. 82v, line 10). Dobson, after noting how the other versions supply various modal verbs, comments, "But [Cleo.'s] text agrees with Corpus and Vernon. Probably error in archetype, independently corrected by various scribes; Caius is best correction" (p. 224n5). However, Corpus normally prefers the construction we schulen for such forecasting statements (see 2.5, 2.199, 4.44, etc.), and so schulen is supplied here. [Cleo.: ant we of euch an sum word sunderliche seggen; Titus: we schulen of euchan sum word sunderlich seien; Nero: we schulen siggen of euerichon sum word sunderliche areawe; Vernon: And we of uchon sum word. sunderliche siggen; Pepys (lacking); Caius: An we of uchan sum word wule seggen; Vitellius: et nous de chescune ascun mot seuralment dirrom; Trinity (recast); Lat.: De hijs singillatim aliquid est dicendum.]

70-71 illinc, ter[r]ens justicia; supra, iratus judex; subtra, patens horridum chaos inferni. MS: Illinc terens iusticia. Supra; iratus iudex. Subtra patens horridum chaos inferni. The word terens should probably read terrens. Further, both Tolkien (p. 157, fol. 83r, lines 2-3) and Zettersten (p. 130, line 30) think that subtra, an apparently non-existent word, is a mistake for subtus. Dobson, though, makes a convincing case for allowing subtra: "So MS., written in full; not a scribal error due to misreading of an abbreviation, as assumed by Herbert (cf. Tolkien in his edition of Corpus), but an obvious analogical form modelled on supra (and infra); subtra is the reading of Cleopatra, Corpus, Caius, Vernon, Titus, Pepys, and the Latin version, subtus only of F, Nero, and the Trinity French version, each of which is contradicted by the most closely related MS. or MSS. (F by C, Nero by Vernon, Trinity by Latin version, Titus and Pepys)" (p. 225n12). [Cleo.: Illinc terrens iusticia supra. iratus iudex. subtra patens orridum chaos inferni; Titus: Illinc terrens iustitia. Supra; iratus iudens. Subtra; patens horridum chaos inferni; Nero: inde terrens iusticia. subtus patens horridum chaos inferni. desuper iratus iudex; Vernon: Illinc terrens iusticia. Supra iratus iudex. Subtra patens horridum chaos inferni; Pepys: Hinc erunt accusancia terrens supra iratus iudex. subtra patrinus horrendum chaos inferni; Caius: illinc terrens iusticia. supra iratus Iudex. subtra patens horridum chaos inferni; Vitellius: Illinc terrenis (sic for terrens) iusticia. supra; iratus iudex. subtus; patens horridum cahos inferni; Trinity: illinc terrens iusticia supra; iratus iudex. subtus; patens horridum chaos inferni; Lat.: illinc terret iusticia; supra iratus Iudex, subtra patens horridum chaos inferni.]

73-74 o Domes[-dei] schulen ure swarte sunnen strongliche bicleopien us. MS: o domes schulen ure swarte sunnen strongliche bicleopien us. Tolkien rightly points out that domes should read domes-dei (p. 157, fol. 83r, line 5). [Cleo.: o demesdei schulen vre swarte sunnen strongliche bicleopen us; Titus: o domes dai schulen ure swarte sunnes strongluche bicalle us; Nero: adomesdei schulen ure swarte sunnen bicleopien us stroncliche; Vernon: o domes day. schullen ur swarte sunnen. strongliche biclepen us; Pepys: On domesday schal þe deuel of helle stonde on þi ri3th half þine blake synnes on þi left half and biclepe þe; Caius: a domes dai shulen ure swarte sunnen strongliche biclepien us; Vitellius: al iour de iuise; noz veirs (sic, for uous) pecchez forment nous accuserunt; Trinity (recast); Lat.: Accusabunt enim nos pecat de mordra anime.]

105-06 pini the flesch ute-with mid feasten. MS: pini þe flesch utewið mið feasten. Here mið seems to be a mistake for mid.

125 weren astorven ferliche. MS: weren asteoruen ferliche. Tolkien detects an error with asteoruen here: it appears in its infinitive form but, as the context shows, a past participle is required. Accordingly, asteoruen is emended to astoruen, the past participle (p. 159, fol. 84r, line 21). [Cleo.: weren astoruen feorliche; Titus: weren istoruen ferliche; Nero: weren i storuen uerliche; Vernon: weoren istoruen ferliche; Pepys (recast); Caius: weren istorwen ferlich; Vitellius: fuissent touz morz merueillousement; Trinity: fussent touz meintenant subitement morz; Lat.: subito fuissent mortui.]

144 MS: o bearninde wearitre. Tolkien thinks the spelling of wearitre faulty, and that it presumably should read -treo (p. 160, fol. 84v, line 21), but the Corpus spelling is allowed to stand here on the chance that the loss of final o may represent a phonological process. Dobson: "D writes galwis above" (p. 230n9). [Cleo.: on berninde wari/treo; Titus: o bearninde waritreos; Nero: o berninde waritreo; Vernon: on bernynde wartreo; Pepys: opon þe galewes; Caius: o berninde waritre.]

163-64 Wat Crist. MS: wac crist. A clear mistake for wat crist (Tolkien, p. 161, fol. 85r, line 20). [Cleo.: wat crist; Titus: Wat crist; Nero: wat crist; Vernon: wot crist; Pepys (lacking); Caius: wat crist; Vitellius: Dieu le siet; Trinity: E ceo sache deu omnipotent; Lat.: Nouit Christus.]

164 to se g[ent]il wardein. MS: to segil wardein. As Tolkien observes, segil is a compressed version of the two words se gentil "so gentle" (p. 161, fol. 85r, line 21). [Cleo.: to swa gentil wardein; Titus: to swa gentil wardein; Nero: to so gentil wardein; Vernon: to so gentil wardeyn; Pepys: to swich a gentil wardeyn; Caius: to so gentil wardein; Vitellius: si gentil gardein; Trinity: si tres gentil gardein; Lat.: tam nobili custodi.]

182-83 ah is i-lich the mon. MS: as is ilich þe mon. It seems likely that as should be ah "but" (see Tolkien, p. 162, fol. 85v, line 19). [Cleo.: A(c) is ilich þe mon; Titus: Ah is ilich þe mon; Nero: auh is i liche þen monne; Vernon: Ak he is lyk þe mon; Pepys (recast); Caius: As is ilich þe mon.]

188-89 he wes lute child tha he hit wrahte. MS: he wes lute child þa he hit / hit wrahte. The scribe accidentally repeated the last word of the previous folio (see Tolkien, p. 162, fols. 85v-86r, lines 28-29).

189 MS: þurh þe abbates ropunge þet he hit seide. The syntax of this sentence suggests that the MS þet, though attested in other authoritative versions, does not belong here. The reading is allowed to stand on the perhaps dubious assumption that an understood "it was" may lie underneath the þet. [Cleo.: þurch þe abbedes roping þet hit seide; Titus: þurh þe abbotes ropinge þet he hit seide; Nero: þuruh þen abbodes gropunge; he hit seide; Vernon: þorw3 þe abbotes tysinge; Pepys (recast); Caius: þurh þe abbodes ropunge; þat he hit seiede; Vitellius: par le monestement labbe. qil le dit; Trinity: par le cri ke lui abbe cria; Lat.: per abbatis hortatum illud dixit.]

198 MS: yef he cuthe seggen. Most of the other versions include a Latin quotation at the end of this paragraph, a sentence lacking in Corpus: Augustinus: Si con-scientia desit, pena satisfacit. ("If knowledge fails, penance makes amends").(from Pseudo-Augustine, Concerning True and False Penance). [Cleo.: Augustinus. Si consciencia desit pena satisfacit; Titus: Augustinus. Si con-scientia desit pena satisfacit; Nero: Si conscientia desit; pena satisfacit. augustinus; Vernon: Aug[ustinus ]. si consciencia desit pena satisfacit; Pepys: Si consciencia desit pena satisfacit; Caius: Augustinus. Si consciencia desit; pena satisfacit; Vitellius (lacking); Trinity: Quia ut dicit augustinus. aut deus pie ignoscet aut ad memoriam reducet; Lat.: Augustinus: Si consciencia desit, pena satisfacit.]

200 MS: ah schulen þe wordes beon ischawet efter þe werkes. Tolkien makes a case for rejecting the MS reading i-schawet ("shown, revealed") in favor of i-schapet ("shaped, formed"), on the basis of Vitellius but reflected in Cleo. (p. 162, fol. 86r, line 17). However, Dobson believes that Cleo.'s form ischape(n) is itself a mistake: "[Scribe] A first wrote ischaped but subpuncted d and added abbreviation-mark for n over e; this may suggest that his exemplar had the true reading ischawed (cf. Corpus) and that his initial error was misreading wynn as p, the change from weak to strong conjugation being a necessary consequence" (p. 235n15). Since it is possible to make very good sense of the MS reading, and since other versions (Nero, Caius, Lat.) also read i-schawet, the MS reading is retained. [Cleo.: Ach schule þe wordes beon ischape(n) efter þe werkes; Titus: Ah schulden wordes beo iset and iseid ischrift after þe wo(e)rkes; Nero: auh ðe wordes schulen beon i scheawede efter ðe werkes; Vernon: Ac schulle þe wordes ben ischewet. aftur þe werkes; Pepys (recast): Ac saie þe wordes after þe werkes; Caius: þe wordes beon iswawed (sic, for ischawed) after þe werkes; Vitellius: Mes deiuent les paroles estre tailleez apres les oeures; Trinity: Nuement donc deiuent les paroleS estre asises e dites en confession solonc les oueres du pecche; Lat.: sed debent sermones exponi secundum opera.]

221 eode o ring. MS: Eede o Ring. Eede is most likely a mistake for Eode "went" (see Tolkien: "Eede sic, for Eode; the last e is altered from o," p. 163, fol. 86v, line 19). [Cleo.: eode on ring; Titus: Eode in Ring; Nero: eode oðe pleouwe; Vernon: Eode on Daunse in chirche3ard; Pepys (lacking); Caius: Eode o ringe.]

235-36 Tale is the fifte totagge. MS: Tale is þe feorðe totagge. As Tolkien points out, the scribe should have written fifte instead of feorthe (p. 164, fol. 87r, line 10). [Cleo.: Tale is þe fifte totagge; Titus: Tale is te fifte totagge; Nero: tale; is ðe vifte totagge; Vernon: Tale; is þe ffyfþe braunche; Pepys: Tale is anoþer; Caius: Tale is þe fifte totag; Vitellius: Numbre est la quinte circumstance; Trinity: Nombre est la quinte circumstance; Lat.: Numerus est quinta circumstancia.]

235-42 Tale is the fifte totagge - [hu ofte hit is i-don.] Cause is hwi thu hit dudest. MS: feorðe totagge. Cause is hwi þu hit dudest. Tolkien: "passage dealing with Tale . . . omitted, between . . . totagge and . . . Cause is" (p. 164, fol. 87r, line 11). This is a clear case of eye-skip from one totagge to the second. The passage is restored from Cleo. Note that near the end of the passage, other authoritative versions provide slightly different readings of Cleo.'s to þus feole.ant þus feole siðen. [Cleo.: hu ofte hit is idon tellen al. Sire ich habbe þis þus ofte idon. iwonet for to speoke þus hercni þullich speche. þenchen hwiche þochtes. for 3eme þing ant for 3eoten. lach3en eoten drinken lasse oðer mare þenne neode askeð. Ich habbe ibeon þusofte wrað seoððen ich wes ischriuen nest ant for þulli þing ant þus longe hit leste Þus ofte iseid les. þus ofte þis ant þis. ich habbe idon þis to þus feole. ant þus feole siðen. Cause is þe seste totagge. Cause is hwi þu hit dudest;
Titus: hu ofte hit is idon tellen al. Sire i haue þis tus ofte idon. wunet for to speken þus. hercne þulli speche. þenchen þulli þohtes for 3eme þing and for 3eten. lahhen. Eten. Drinken. lesse oðer mare þen ned asked. I haue beon þus ofte wrað siðen iwas last schriuen. and for þis þing. and tus longe hit laste. þus ofte iseid leas. þus ofte þis and tis. Ich haue idon þis to þus feole. and oþus fele wisen. Cause is te Sixte totagge. Cause is hwi þu hit dides;
Nero: tellen al hu ofte hit is idon. Sire ich habbe þis. þus ofte i don. iwuned forto speken þus. ant hercnen swuche spechen. ant þenchen swuche þouhtes. vor3emed þinges: ant for3iten. lauhwen. eten. drinken. lesse oðer more; þen neod were. Ich habbe ibeon þus ofte wroð; seoððen ich was i schriuen nexst. ant for swuche þinge. ant þus longe hit ileste. þus ofte i seide leas. þus ofte þis ant tis. Ich habbe i don þis; þus feole siðen. ant o þus feole wisen. ant to þus feole. Cause: is þe sixte totagge. cause is; hwi ðu hit dudest;
Vernon: Now ofte hit is idon. so tellen al. Sire ichabbe þis. þus ofte idon. iwont forte speken þus. herkenen such speche. þenken such þouhtes. ffor 3eme þing. and for3eten. Lau3when. eten. drinken. Lasse. oþer more; þen neod askeþ. Ichabbe iben þus ofte wroþ. seþþen ich was ischriuen last. and for such þing. And þus longe hit laste. þus ofte iseid fals. þus ofte þis and þis. Ichabbe ido þis; þus ofte. to þus feole. and o þus feole wysen. Cause; is þe sixte braunche. Cause is; whi þu hit dedest;
Pepys: tellen hou oft þus oft yspoken yseide les. Þou3th þus fele þou3tte. for3emed þing þat my3th haue holpen man oiþer for3eten þing. lau3en eten dronken lesse oiþer more þan hij hadden nede to þus ofte in wraþþe siþþen i was last schriuen. Cause whi þou dedest it;
Caius: hu ofte hit is idon. tellen al. Sire ich habbe þis þus ofte idon. iwuned forte speke(n) þus Hercni swulli speche. þenche swuche þochtes. forgemen þing. and feorgeten. lahhen. eoten. drinken. les oþer mare þen neod eskede. Ich habbe þus ofte ibeon wrað seoðþen ich wes ischrwen nest. and for þulli þing. and þus longe hit laste. þus ofte iseide les. þus ofte þis and þis. Ich habbe idon þis þus ofte to þus feole. and o þus feole wise. Cause is hwi þu hit dudest;
Vitellius: come souent cest fet tout countier. Sire iai cest si souent fet ieo acustome. de issi parler. tiele parole escoutier. pensir tiels pensirs. Malgarder chose; et oblier. Rire. mangier. boire . . . plus qe bosoigne ne de . . . e. Jai estee si souent corou(cee) puis qe ieo fu dereinement con(f)essee et pur tiele chose. et issi longement dura. Issi souent ai dit faus. Issi souent cest et cest. Jai fet cest a tantz et en tantes manieres. Cause est la sixte circumstance. cause est pur quai vous le feites;
Trinity: ke doit estre nomee en confession. ceo est. homme deit dire quante foiz il ad fet le pecche si il en soueigne en iceste manere. Sire ieo ai fet cest pecche tantes foiz. e dire quantes foiz si il set. Sire ieo ai este acostoume de parler en tiele maniere. e issint escuter teles paroles e teus penseres penser e en teu pensers (mout men ai delitez e longement. Sire ieo ai mange e beu meintes fez plus ke mester ne me fust. Ieo ai este tantes foiz corucez pus ke-ioe fu de reine)ment confes. e pur ceste chose tant longement me durra il coruz. Tantes foiz ai ieo dit faus ou menti ascient. Tantes foiz ai ieo fet cest chose. ieo ai fet teu pecche oue tants ou oue tanz e en tant maniers. Cause; est la sime circumstance de ki homme deit fere mencion en sa confession;
Lat.: dicere totum quociens factum est. 'Assuetus sum sic loqui, talia audire, talia cogitare, negligere, obliuisci, ridere, commedere, bibere plus aut minus quam oporteret. Sic sepius iratus sum postquam proximo confitebar et pro tali re et tam diu durauit ira; tam frequenter dixi falsum, tociens hoc et illud feci et hoc tot et tot modis.' Causa est sexta circumstancia, videlicet, quare illud fecisti.]

261 shalt trusse ant al torplin into helle. Diensberg thinks that trusse is a French-derived past participle meaning "packed up" and would emend the text to ant swa with al the schendlac thu schalt trusse(e) in to helle. His translation: "and thus with all that shame all packed up you shall fall into hell" ("Ancrene Wisse/ Riwle," p. 81). However, it seems more likely that trusse is an infinitive parallel to torplin.

292 MS: 3ef he lið biþencheð him hwenne he wule arisen. Tolkien: "biþencheð, sic: probably for biþenched (F gist sei purpensant); cf. biswenchet, f. 112b. 7" (p. 166, fol. 88r, line 24). Dobson comments, "The collation shows that Corpus and Cleopatra correctly reproduce the archetype, and makes improbable Tolkien's suggestion that the Corpus reading is an error for biþenched (unless we assume error in the archetype); rather this is an idiom involving the early ME verbal noun in -, for which the participial ending -ed was substituted (cf. Chaucer's was go walked etc.). F's [i.e., Vitellius'] translation is in either case correct" (Dobson, p. 241n21). It seems simpler and less intrusive, though, to take the form as a present tense verb parallel to lið and to assume a lost point after lið. [Cleo.: 3ef he lið biþencheð him; Titus: 3if ho lið ant biþencheð hire; Nero: 3if he lið ant biþencheð; Vernon: 3if he liþ biþenkeþ him. whonne he wole arysen; Pepys (lacking); Caius: gif he lid and biþenched him þenne he wule arisen; Vitellius: sil gist sei purpensant; Trinity: si il gise en pes en feu. e se purpense quant il ueut leuer; Lat.: si iaceat et deliberet quando surgere voluerit.]

295 thet ahten hihin to schrift. MS: þet ahten hihin (þe) to schrift. Tolkien rejects the addition of þe (p. 166, fol. 88v, line 1), and indeed no other version contains it. In Cleo., Scribe D translates this phrase into Latin: debent accelerare confessionem "(which) ought to hurry confession" (Dobson, p. 241n32). [Cleo.: þet achten hi3e to schrift; Titus: þet ahten hihen to schrift; Nero: ðet ouhten hien touward schrifte; Vernon: þat ou3te hi3en to schrift; Pepys: whi a Man au3t go sone to schrift; Caius: þat ahten hihen schrift; Vitellius: qe duissent hastier confession; Trinity: ke nus deusunt par reson haster a confession; Lat.: que festinare debent confessionem.]

305-06 Principiis obsta. [Sero] medicina paratur cum mala per longas. MS: Principiis obsta. Medicina paratur cum mala perlongas. Tolkien: "sero omitted before Medicina; perlongas, sic, for per longas [conualuere moras]" (p. 167, fol. 88v, line 15). A quote from Ovid's Remedia Amoris, lines 91-92. In full this line reads "Principiis obsta; sero medicina paratur, / Cum mala per longas convaluere moras." [Cleo.: (Sero. med.); Titus: Principiis obsta sero medicina paratur; Nero: principiis obsta sero medicina paratur; Vernon: Principium obsta. sero. medicina; Pepys: Principi constalere medicina paratur; Caius: principiis obsta sero medicina paratur; Vitellius (lacking); Trinity: principiis obsta. sero medicina paratur; Lat.: Principijs obsta; sero medicina paratur.]

313-25 Circumdederunt me canes multi . . . swuch beatunge. Tolkien: "Circumdederunt me canes multi to swuch beatunge is placed later" (p. 166, fol. 88r, line 28). Dobson comments, "The preceding sentence, se me deoppere . . . latere, is similarly placed in Nero, Titus, Pepys, Latin version, and Trinity version (i.e. the MSS. which give the Circumdederunt passage at the earlier point, with the exception of F), but immediately before Þe achtuðe þing (and therefore immediately after the Circumdederunt passage) in Corpus, Caius, and Vernon; it is entirely omitted by F. Probably another early addition to the basic text, which seems to me to belong immediately after haueð ilein longe (l. 12), since it continues the thought of the Augustinian citation, i.e. Corpus etc. place it essentially rightly but spoil the sequence of thought by bringing in the Circumdederent passage before it" (p. 243n15).

320 other awuri[e]th ahte. MS: oðer awurið ahte. Tolkien: "awurið, sic" (p. 167, fol. 89r, line 5). An e seems to have dropped out of awurið, which as it stands is a plural form. It is emended to the singular awurieth. [Cleo. (lacking); Titus: oðer wuries ahte; Nero: oðer awurieð eihte; Vernon: oþer aworieþ au3te; Pepys (lacking); Caius: oþer awuried eahte.]

322 mid ti tunge [i] schrift. MS: mid ti tunge schrift. Tolkien correctly points out that the preposition i ("in") has been omitted after tunge (p. 167, fol. 89r, line 7). [Cleo. (lacking); Titus: wið þi tunge i schrift; Nero: mid þine tunge ine schrifte; Vernon: mid þi tonge in schrift; Pepys (recast); Caius: wid þi tunge i schrift; Vitellius: od vostre lange en confession; Trinity: par uostre lange en confession; Lat.: cum lingua in confessione.]

334-35 he schulde habben unw[r]ihen hise wunden. MS: he schulde habben unwihen hise wunden. As Tolkien notes, the scribe has mistakenly left the r out of unw[r]ihen (p. 168, fol. 89r, line 24). The common ancestor of Corpus and Cleo. must have contained the same mistake: Dobson comments on Cleo.'s text, "[Scribe] D adds insertion-mark after wynn and writes r above. But [Scribe] A's form agrees with Corpus unwihen against unwrihen Titus, Caius, Nero (with variations of spelling); the coincidence in error is very odd. Perhaps the archetype was itself faulty" (p. 243n5). [Cleo.: he schulde habben unwi3en hise wunden; Titus: he schulde hauen unwrihen hise wundes; Nero: he schulde habben unwrien his wunden; Vernon: he schulde habben unhuled his wounden; Pepys (recast); Caius: he schulde habben unwhrihen hise wunden; Vitellius: il deust auer descouert ses plaies; Trinity: il le deust auoir moustre ses plaies; Lat.: debuit sua wlnera reuelasse.]

336 hare flowinde cweise. MS: hare flowinde gi cweise. The scribe first wrote gi but canceled it. Tolkien thinks that it was "probably [the] beginning of erroneous repetition of gute" (p. 168, fol. 89r, line 27).

340 eadmodnesse eadmodliche bigileth ure Laverd. MS: eadmodnesse ead/modliche bigileð ure lauerd. Tolkien: "ead/modliche for eadiliche" (p. 168, fol. 89v, line 4). The Corpus reading is grammatically sound, and thus is retained, though it is possible (judging by the other versions) that it represents a mistaken repetition (dittography). [Cleo.: edmodnesse eadiliche bigileð ure lauerd; Titus: eadmodnesse eadiliche bigles ure lauerd; Nero: edmodnesse. eadiliche bigileð ure louerd ant edmodliche; Vernon: mekenesse eþelyche bigyleþ ur lord; Pepys (recast): Þus þe lowe Man of hert bigileþ god; Caius: eadmodnesse eadiliche bigiled ure lauerd; Vitellius: humilite seintement degile nostre seignour; Trinity: ele de gile e de ceit e engingne quenses nostre seignur sutilment; Lat.: Sic humilitas feliciter Dominum decipit.]

382 Theos twa na-mon ne parti from other, for as Sein Gregoire seith. MS: Þeos twa namon ne parti from (oðer). for as sein gregoire seið. A later scribe or reader has inserted the word oþer between from and for, rightly correcting the faulty sentence. [Cleo.: Þeos twa na mon ne parti from oðer. for as seint gregori seið; Titus: Þeose twa mon ne schal ne twinne. ne parti fram oðer for as Seint Gregorie seis; Nero: þeos two. no mon ne to dele urom oðer. vor ase seint gregorie seið; Vernon: þeos two; no mon ne parte from oþer. ffor as seint Gregorius. seiþ; Pepys: Þise two noman ne parte hem asundre; Caius: þeos twa namon ne parti from oþer. for as seint gregorie seið; Vitellius: Ces dous nul hom ne departe. lun de laltre; Trinity: Cestes deus choses ne deit nul homme (desseurer ne la une) del autre de partir; Lat.: Has duas molas nemo separet ab iuicem quia sicut dicit Gregorius.]

411 thet for a cwene word. MS: þet for a cwene worð. The scribe mistakenly wrote a ð instead of a d, a common mistake. [Cleo.: þet for acwene word; Titus: and tat for a cwene word; Nero: and tet for ane cwene worde; Vernon: for a cwene word; Pepys (lacking); Caius: þat for a cwene word; Vitellius: par le mot dune baisse; Trinity: pur la parole de une ueilie; Lat.: pro uoce ancille.]

412 hu the theof o rode. MS: O(f) þe þeof o rode. A scribe or reader tried to make sense of this odd error by changing O to Of. The other versions make it clear, however, that O mistakenly replaces Hu "how" (see Tolkien, p. 171, fol. 91r, line 16). [Cleo.: hu þe þeof o rode; Titus: Hu þe þeof o rode; Nero: and hwu þe þeof oþe rode; Vernon: Hou þe þeof on Roode; Pepys: and þe þef also; Caius: Hu þe þeof on rode; Vitellius: comment li larron en la croiz; Trinity: comment li laron; Lat.: quomodo latro in cruce.]

417 as ha beoth th'ruppe i-writene. MS: as ha weren beoð þruppe iwrite/ne. The scribe first wrote weren, but canceled it and wrote beoth instead, most likely bringing the text into agreement with the exemplar (see Tolkien, p. 172, fol. 91r, lines 22-23). [Cleo.: as ha beoð þruppe iwritene; Titus: as ho arn þruppe iwriten; Nero: as heo beoð þer uppe i writene; Vernon: as heo beoþ þroppe iwriten; Pepys (lacking); Caius: as ha beod þeruppe iwriten; Vitellius: sicome il sunt la sus escrites; Trinity (lacking); Lat.: sicut supra libro iiij? scribuntur.]

455-56 MS: swote i godes nease smeallinde flures. It seems likely that an ase has dropped out after nease very early on in the textual transmission, probably due to eye-skip (nease ase). The MS reading is retained, however, since an as (come) appears only in Trinity, and is most likely an ad hoc revision. Other scribes were able to make sense of the phrase as it stands, though Nero's revision simplifies the syntax. [Cleo.: swote in godes nase smellinde flures; Nero: swote smellinde flures ine godes neose; Titus: swete i godes nase smellinde flures; Vernon: swote in godes neose. smullinde floures; Pepys (lacking); Caius: swote i godes nase. smellinde flures; Vitellius: flurs al nes dieu doucement fleirantes; Trinity: mout doucement (flerent) en nes nostre seignur come flours odouranz; Lat.: suaues in eius naribus.]

461 ha ne mei nawt fulleliche wreien hire-seolven. MS: ha ne mei nawt fulleliche wreien hire / hire seoluen. The scribe corrects the erroneous repetition of hire by striking through the first one (Tolkien, p. 174, fol. 9r, line 26).


N, T
N, T
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Part Five


Twa thinges neometh yeme of schrift i the biginnunge: the earre, of hwuch
mihte hit beo; the other, hwuch hit schule beon. This beoth nu as twa limen
ant either is todealet, the earre o sixe, the other o sixtene stucchen. Nu is this
of the earre:
    Schrift haveth monie mihtes, ah nulle ich of alle seggen bute sixe: threo ayein the
deovel ant threo on us-seolven. Schrift schent then deovel, hacketh of his heaved, ant
todreaveth his ferd. Schrift wescheth us of alle ure fulthen, yelt us alle ure luren,
maketh us Godes children. Either haveth hise threo. Pruvie we nu alle. The earste
threo beoth alle i-schawde i Judithe deden. Judith - thet is, schrift, as wes yare i-seid
- sloh Oloferne - thet is, the feond of helle. Turn th'ruppe ther we speken of
fuhelene cunde the beoth i-evenet to ancre. Ha hackede of his heaved ant seoththen
com ant schawde hit to the burh-preostes. Thenne is the feond i-schend, hwen me
schaweth alle hise cweadschipes: his heaved is i-hacket of, ant he i-slein i the mon,
sone se he eaver is riht sari for his sunnen ant haveth schrift on heorte. Ah he nis nawt
the yet i-schend hwil his heaved is i-hulet, as dude on earst Judith, ear hit beo i-
schawet - thet is, ear the muth i schrift do ut the heaved sunne - nawt te sunne ane,
ah al the biginnunge th'rof, ant te fore-ridles the brohten in the sunne - thet is, the
deofles heaved, thet me schal totreoden anan, as ich ear seide. Thenne fli[t]h his ferd
anan as dude Olofernes: his wiheles ant his wrenches thet he us with asaileth, doth ham
alle o fluhte ant te burh is arud thet ha hefden biset. Thet is to seggen, the sunfule is
delifret. Judas Macabeu - hwa stod ayein him? Alswa i Judicum, thet folc tha hit
easkede efter Josues death, hwa schulde beon hare dug ant leaden ham i ferde: Quis
erit dux noster? Ure Laverd ham ondswerede: Judas schal gan bivoren ow, ant ich
chulle ower faes lond biteachen in his honden. Lokith nu ful yeorne hwet tis beo to
seggen: Josue spealeth "heale," ant Judas "schrift" - as Judith. Thenne is Josue dead
hwen sawle heale is forloren thurh eani deadlich sunne. The sunfule seolf is the unwihtes
lond, the is ure deadliche fa, ah this lond ure Laverd bihat to biteachen i Judase honden,
for-hwon thet he ga bivoren. Schrift, lo, is gunfanuner, ant bereth the banere bivoren al
Godes ferd - thet beoth gode theawes. Schrift reaveth the feond his lond - thet is,
the sunfule mon - ant al todriveth Chanaan the feondes ferd of helle. Judas hit dude
licomliche, ant schrift thet hit bitacneth deth gasteliche thet ilke. This beoth nuthe threo
thing [thet schrift deth o the deovel. The other threo thing] thet hit deth us-seolven -
thet beoth theose her-efter.
    Schrift wescheth us of alle ure fulthen, for swa hit is i-writen: Omnia in confessione
lavantur. Glosa super: Confitebimur tibi, Deus, confitebimur. Ant thet wes bitacnet
tha Judith wesch hire ant despulede hire of widewene schrud, thet wes merke of sorhe
- ant sorhe nis bute of sunne: Lavit corpus suum et exuit se vestimentis sue
viduitatis. Schrift eft al thet god thet we hefden forloren thurh heaved-sunne bringeth
al ayein ant yelt al togederes. Joel: Reddam vobis annos quos comedit locusta,
brucus, rubigo et erugo. This wes bitacnet thurh thet Judith schrudde hire mid hali-
dahne weden ant feahede hire ute-with as schrift deth us in-with: with alle the feire
urnemenz the blisse bitacnith. Ant ure Laverd seith thurh Zacharie, Erunt sicut fuerant
antequam projeceram eos. Thet is, "schrift schal makie the mon al-swuch as he wes
bivore thet he sunegede," ase cleane ant ase feier, ant ase riche of alle god the limpeth
to sawle. The thridde thing is thet schrift deth us-seolven the frut of thes othre twa ant
endeth ham bathe - thet is, maketh us Godes children. This is bitacnet ther-bi thet
Judas i Genesy biwon of Jacob Benjamin. Benjamin seith ase muchel ase "sune of riht
half." Judas - thet is "schrift," alswa as is Judith, for ba ha spealieth an on Ebreische
ledene. Thes gasteliche Judas biyet of Jacob, his feader - thet is, ure Laverd - to
beon his riht-hondes sune, ant bruken buten ende the eritage of heovene. Nu we habbeth
i-seid of hwuch mihte schrift is, hwucch efficaces hit haveth, ant i-nempnet sixe. Loki
we nu yeornliche hwuch schrift schule beon, the beo of swuch strengthe. Ant for-te
schawin hit bet, deale we nu this lim o sixtene stucchen.
    Schrift schal beo wreiful, bitter mid sorhe, i-hal, naket, ofte i-maket, hihful, eadmod,
scheomeful, [dredful], hopeful, wis, soth, ant willes, ahne, ant stude-vest, bithoht
bivore longe. Her beoth nu as thah hit weren sixtene stuchen the beoth i-feiet to schrift,
ant we [schulen] of euch-an sum word sunderliche seggen:
    Schrift schal beo wreiful. Mon schal wreien him i schrift, nawt werien him, ne
seggen, "Ich hit dude thurh othre. Ich wes i-ned ther-to. The feond hit makede me
don." Thus Eve ant Adam wereden ham - Adam thurh Eve, ant Eve thurh the neddre.
The feond ne mei neden na-mon to na sunne, thah he eggi ther-to, ah ful wel he let of
hwen ei seith thet he makede him to sunegin, as thah he hefde strengthe the naveth nan
mid alle bute of us-seolven. Ah me ah to seggen, "Min ahne unwrestlec hit dude, ant
willes ant waldes ich beah to the deovel." Yef thu witest ei thing thi sunne bute the-
seolven, thu ne schrivest te nawt; yef thu seist thet tin unstrengthe ne mahte nawt elles,
thu wrenchest thi sunne up-o Godd the makede the swuch, thet tu, bi thin tale, withstonde
ne mahtest. Wreie we thenne us-seolven, for, lo, hwet Seinte Pawel seith, Si nos ipsos
dijudicaremus, non utique judicaremur - thet is, "yef we wreieth wel her ant
demeth her us-seolven, we schule beo cwite of wreiunge ed te muchele dome," thear
as Seint Anselme seith theos dredfule wordes: Hinc erunt accusancia peccata; illinc,
ter[r]ens justicia; supra, iratus judex; subtra, patens horridum chaos inferni;
intus, urens consciencia; foris, ardens mundus. Peccator sic deprehensus in
quam partem se premet?
"O the an half o Domes[-dei] schulen ure swarte sunnen
strongliche bicleopien us of ure sawle morthre. O the other half stont rihtwisnesse,
thet na reowthe nis with, dredful ant grislich, ant grureful to bihalden; buven us, the
eorre deme" - for ase softe as he is her, ase heard he bith ther; ase milde as he is nu,
ase sturne thenne; lomb her, liun ther, as the prophete witneth: leo rugiet: quis non
timebit? "The liun schal greden," he seith. "Hwa ne mei beon offearet?" Her we
cleopieth him lomb as ofte as we singeth Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi. - Nu
as ich seide, schule we seon buven us the ilke eorre deme thet is ec witnesse ant wat
alle ure gultes; bineothen us, yeoniende the wide throte of helle; in-with us-seolven, ure
ahne conscience - thet is, ure in-wit - forculiende hire-seolven, with the fur of
sunne; withuten us, al the world leitinde o swart lei up into the skiwes. The sari sunfule
thus biset - hu schal him stonde thenne? To hwuch of thes fowre mei he him biwenden?
Nis ther buten heren thet hearde word, thet wa word, thet grisliche word, grureful
over alle: Ite, maledicti, in ignem eternum qui paratus est diabolo et angelis ejus.
"Gath ye, aweariede, ut of min eh-sihthe, into thet eche fur thet wes i-greithet to the
feond ant to his engles. Ye forbuhe monne dom thet ich demde mon to - thet wes to
libben i swinc, ant i sar on eorthe - ant ye schulen nu, for-thi, habben deofles dom,
bearne with him echeliche i the fur of helle." With this, schulen the forlorene warpen a
swuch yur, thet heovene ant eorthe mahen ba grimliche agrisen. For-thi, Seint Austin
leofliche us leareth, Ascendat homo tribunal mentis sue, si illud cogitat, quod
oportet eum exiberi ante tribunal Christi. Assit accusatrix cogitatio; testis,
consciencia; carnifex, timor
- thet is, thenche mon o Domes-dei ant deme her him-
seolven thus o thisse wise. Skile sitte as domes-mon up-o the dom-seotel. Cume th'refter
forth his thohtes munegunge, wreie him ant bicleopie him of misliche sunnen: "Beal
ami, this thu dudest thear! ant tis thear! ant tis thear! ant o thisse wise." His in-wit beo
i-cnawes th'rof ant beore witnesse: "Soth hit is! Soth hit is! This, ant muchele mare."
Cume forth th'refter fearlac thurh the deme heast the heterliche hate: "Tac, bind him
hete-veste, for he is deathes wurthe. Bind him swa euch lim thet he haveth with i-
suneget thet he ne mahe with ham sunegi na mare." Fearlac haveth i-bunden him,
hwen he ne dear for fearlac sturie toward sunne. Yet nis nawt the deme - thet is, skile
- i-paiet, thah he beo i-bunden ant halde him with sunne, bute yef he abugge the sunne
thet he wrahte, ant cleopeth forth pine ant sorhe, ant hat thet sorhe thersche in-with the
heorte with sar bireowsunge, swa, thet hire suhie, ant pini the flesch ute-with mid
feasten ant with othre fleschliche sares. Hwa-se o thisse wise, bivoren the muchele
dom, demeth her him-seolven, eadi he is ant seli. For as the prophete seith, Non judicabit
Deus bis in id ipsum. "Nule nawt ure Laverd thet a mon for a thing beo twien i-
demet." Hit nis nawt i Godes curt as i the schire, ther-as the thet nicketh wel mei beon
i-borhen, ant te ful the is i-cnawen. Bivore Godd is other-weis. Si tu accusas, Deus
excusat, et vice versa. "Yef thu wreiest te her, Godd wule werie the thear," ant skerin
mid alle ed te nearewe dome, for-hwon thet tu deme the as ich i-taht habbe.
    Schrift schal beo bitter, ayein thet te sunne thuhte sum-chearre swete. Judith, the
spealeth "schrift," as ich ofte habbe i-seid, wes Merarihtes dohter. Ant Judas - thet is
ec "schrift" - wivede o Thamar. "Merariht" ant "Thamar" ba ha spealieth an on
Ebreische ledene. Neometh nu yeorne yeme of the bitacnunge; ich hit segge scheortliche.
Bitter sar ant schrift - thet an mot cumen of the other, as Judith dude of Merariht. Ant
ba beon somet i-feiet, as Judas ant Thamar. For nowther withuten other nis noht
wurth, other lutel - Phares ant Zaram, ne temith ha neavre. Judas streonede of Thamar
Phares ant Zaram. Phares divisio, Zaram oriens interpretatur, the gasteliche bitacnith
tweamunge from sunne, ant i the heorte th'refter arisinde grace. Fowr thinges, yef
mon thencheth thet heaved sunne dude him, mahen makien him to sorhin ant bittrin his
heorte. Lo, this the forme: yef a mon hefde i-losed in a time of the dei his feader ant his
moder, his sustren ant his brethren, ant al his cun, ant alle his freond thet he eaver
hefde weren astorven ferliche, nalde he over alle men sorhful beon ant sari, as he eathe
mahte? Godd wat, he mei beon muche deale sorhfulre thet haveth with deadlich sunne
gasteliche i-slein Godd in-with his sawle, nawt ane forloren the swete feader of heovene,
ant Seinte Marie, his deore-wurthe moder, other Hali Chirche - hwen he of hire
naveth ne leasse ne mare - ant te engles of heovene, ant alle hali halhen, the weren him
ear for freond, for brethren ant for sustren. As to him ha beoth deade. As onont him is,
he haveth i-slein ham alle, ant haveth, thear as ha livieth aa, leaththe of ham alle, as
Jeremie witneth: Omnes amici ejus spreverunt eam; facti sunt ei inimici - thet
is, "al thet him luvede yeieth spi him on, ant heatieth him alle." Yet mare, his children
sone se he sunegede deadliche deiden alle clane - thet beoth his gode werkes, the
beoth forloren alle. Yet upon al this ilke he is him-seolf biwrixlet ant bicumen of Godes
child the deofles bearn of helle, eatelich to seonne as Godd seolf i the Godspel seith:
Vos ex patre diabolo estis. Thenche euch of his estat, thet he is other wes in, ant he
mei seon hwer-vore he ah to siken sare. For-thi seith Jeremie, Luctum unigeniti fac
tibi, planctum amarum. "Make bitter man, as wif deth for hire child the nefde bute
him ane" ant sith hit bivoren hire fearliche asteorven. Nu the other thet ich bihet: A mon
the were i-demet for a luther morthre to beo forbearnd al cwic, other scheomeliche
ahonget - hu walde his heorte stonden? Me thu, unseli sunful, tha thu thurh deadlich
sunne murthredest Godes spuse - thet is, thi sawle - tha thu were i-demet for-te
beon ahonget o bearninde weari-tre i the eche lei of helle.
    Ther thu makedest foreward mid te deovel of thi death, ant seidest in Ysaie with the
forlorene, Pepigimus cum morte fedus, et cum inferno inivimus pactum - thet
is, "we habbeth treowthe i-pliht death, foreward i-feast mid helle." For this is the
feondes chaffere: he yeove the sunne, ant tu him thi sawle, ant ti bodi mid al, to weane
ant to wontreathe, world abuten ende. Nu the thridde scheortliche: Thench - a mon
the hefde al the world o walde, ant hefde for his cweadschipe forloren al on a stunde
- hu he walde murnin ant sari i-wurthen. Thenne ahest tu to beon hundret sithe
sarure, the thurh an heaved sunne forlure the riche of heovene - forlure ure Laverd,
thet is hundret sithen, ye, thusent thusent sithen betere then is al the world, eorthe ba
ant heovene. Que enim conventio Christi ad Belial. Nu yet the feorthe: yef the king
hefde bitaht his deore sune to his an cniht to lokin, ant untheode leadde forth this child
in his warde swa thet tet child seolf weorrede upon his feader with thet untheode, nalde
the cniht beo sari ant scheomien ful sare? We beoth alle Godes sunen - the kinges of
heovene - the haveth bitaht ure euch an engel i warde. Sari is he on his wise hwen
untheode leat us forth - hwen we ure gode feader wreatheth with sunne. Beo we sari
thet we eaver schulen wreathen swuch feader ant sweamen swuch wardein, the wit
ant wereth us eaver with the unseli gastes, for elles uvele us stode. Ah we schuhteth
him awei hwen we doth deadlich sunne, ant heo leapeth thenne to, sone se he us
firseth. Halde we him neh us with smeal of gode werkes, ant us in his warde. Wat
Crist, ure euch-an to se g[ent]il wardein bereth to lutel menske, ant kunnen him to lutel
thonc of his servise. Theos ant monie reisuns beoth hwi mon mei beo bitterliche sari
for his sunnen ant wepen ful sare. Ant wel is him the swa mei, for wop is sawle heale.
Ure Laverd deth toward us as me deth to uvel deattur: nimeth leasse then we ahen him,
ant is thah wel i-paiet. We ahen him blod for blod, ant ure blod, thah, ayein his blod thet
he schedde for us were ful unefne change. Ah wast tu hu me yeddeth: "me nimeth ed
uvel dettur aten for hweate," ant ure Laverd nimeth ed us teares ayein his blod, ant is
wil-cweme. He weop o the rode, o Lazre, o Jerusalem - for other monne sunnen. Yef
we wepeth for ure ahne, nis na muche wunder. "Wepe we," quoth the hali mon i Vitas
Patrum, tha me hefde longe on him i-yeiet efter sarmun. "Leote we," quoth he, "teares
leste ure ahne teares forseothen us in helle."
    Schrift schal beon i-hal - thet is, i-seid al to a mon, ut of childhade. The povre
widewe, hwen ha wule hire hus cleansin, ha gedereth al the greaste on an heap on alre
earst, ant schuveth hit ut thenne. Th'refter kimeth eft ayein ant heapeth eft togederes
thet wes ear i-leavet ant schuveth hit ut efter. Th'refter o the smeale dust, yef hit
dusteth swithe, ha flasketh weater ant swopeth ut efter al thet other. Alswa schal the
schriveth him efter the greate schuven ut the smealre. Yef dust of lihte thohtes windeth
to swithe up, flaski teares on ham, ne schulen ha nawt thenne ablende the heorte
ehnen. Hwa-se heleth ea-wiht, he naveth i-seid na-wiht for-hwon he beo the skerre, ah
is i-lich the mon the haveth on him monie deadliche wunden ant schaweth the leche alle
ant let healen, buten an, thet he deieth upon as he schulde on alle. He is ase men in a
schip the haveth monie thurles ther the weater threasteth in, ant heo dutteth alle buten
an thurh hwam ha druncnith alle clane. Me teleth of the hali mon the lei on his death-
uvel ant wes lath to seggen a sunne of his childhad, ant his abbat bed him allegate
seggen. Ant he ondswerede thet hit nere na neod, for-thi thet he wes lute child tha he
hit wrahte. O least thah, unneathe thurh the abbates ropunge, thet he hit seide ant deide
th'refter sone. Efter his death, com a niht ant schawde him to his abbat i snaw-hwite
schrudes, as the thet was i-borhen, ant seide thet sikerliche, yef he nefde thet ilke thing
thet he dude i childhad i schrift utterliche i-seid, he were i-demet bimong the forlorene.
Alswa of an-other thet wes for neh fordemet for-thi thet he hefde en-chearre i-ned a
mon to drinken ant deide th'rof unschriven. Alswa of the leafdi, for-thi thet ha hefde i-
leanet to a wake a wummon an of hire weden. Ah hwa-se haveth yeorne i-soht alle the
hurnen of his heorte, ne ne con rungi mare ut, yef ther ea-wiht edluteth, hit is, ich
hopie, i the schrift i-schuven ut mid tet other, hwen ther ne lith na yemeles, ant he
walde fein mare yef he cuthe seggen.
    Schrift schal beo naket - thet is, naketliche i-maket, nawt bisamplet feire, ne
hendeliche i-smaket, ah schulen the wordes beon i-schawet efter the werkes. Thet is
tacne of heatunge, thet me tuketh to wundre thing thet me heateth swithe. Yef thu
heatest ti sunne, hwi spekest tu menskeliche th'rof? Hwi hudest tu his fulthe? Spec hit
scheome schendfulliche, ant tuk hit al to wundre, alswa as thu wel wult schende then
schucke. "Sire," ha seith, the wummon, "ich habbe i-haved leofmon," other "ich habbe
i-beon," ha seith, "fol of me-seolven." This nis nawt naket schrift. Biclute thu hit nawt.
Do awei the totagges. Unwrih the ant sei, "Sire - Godes are! - ich am a ful stod-
meare, a stinkinde hore." Yef thi fa a ful nome ant cleope thi sunne fule. Make hit i
schrift steort-naket - thet is, ne hel thu na-wiht of al thet lith ther-abuten, thah to fule
me mei seggen. Me ne thearf nawt nempnin thet fule dede bi his ahne fule nome, ne the
schendfule limes bi hare ahne nome - inoh is to seggen swa thet te hali schrift-feader
witerliche understonde hweat tu wulle meanen. Abute sunne liggeth six thing thet hit
hulieth, o Latin "circumstances," on Englisch "totagges" mahe beon i-cleopede: persone,
stude, time, manere, tale, cause. Persone the dude the sunne, other with hwam me hit
dude, unwreo ant segge, "Sire, ich am a wummon ant schulde bi rihte beo mare
scheomeful to habben i-speken as ich spec, other i-don as ich dude, for-thi mi sunne is
mare then of a wepmon, for hit bicom me wurse. Ich am "an ancre," "a nunne," "a wif
i-weddet," "a meiden," "a wummon thet me lefde se wel," "a wummon the habbe ear
i-beon i-bearnd with swuch thing, ant ahte the betere for-te beon i-warnet." Sire, hit
wes with swuch mon" - ant nempni thenne - "munek," "preost," "other clearc," ant
of thet ordre, "a weddet mon," "a ladles thing," "a wummon as ich am." This is nu of
persone. Alswa of the stude, "Sire, thus ich pleide other spec i chirche," "eode o ring
i chirch-yard," "biheold hit other wreastlunge, ant othre fol gomenes," "spec thus
other pleide bivoren worltliche men, bivoren recluse in ancre-hus, ed other thurl then
ich schulde, neh hali thing." "Ich custe him ther," "hondlede him i swuch stude, other
me-seolven." "I chirche ich thohte thus," "biheold him ed te weovede." Of the time
alswa, "Sire, ich wes of swuch ealde thet ich ahte wel to habben wisluker i-wite me."
"Sire, ich hit dude in lenten, i feasten dahes, in hali dahes, hwen othre weren ed chirche."
"Sire, ich wes sone overcumen, ant is the sunne mare then yef ich hefde i-beon akeast
with strengthe ant feole swenges." "Sire, ich wes the biginnunge hwi swuch thing
hefde forth-gong, thurh thet ich com i swuch stude ant i swuch time. Ich bithohte me
ful wel ear then ich hit eaver dude, hu uvele hit were i-don ant dude hit no-the-leatere."
The manere alswa seggen - thet is the feorthe totagge. "Sire, this sunne ich dude thus
ant o thisse wise." "Thus ich leornede hit earst." "Thus ich com earst th'rin." "Thus
ich dude hit forth-ward o thus feole wisen, thus fulliche, thus scheomeliche." "Thus
ich sohte delit, hu ich meast mahte paien mi lustes brune," ant seggen al the wise. Tale
is the fifte totagge - [hu ofte hit is i-don tellen al: "Sire, ich habbe this thus ofte i-don,
i-wonet for to speoke thus, hercni thullich speche, thenchen hwiche thochtes, foryeme
thing ant foryeoten, lachyen, eoten, drinken, lasse other mare thenne neode asketh."
"Ich habbe i-beon thus ofte wrath seoththen ich wes i-schriven nest, ant for thulli
thing, ant thus longe hit leste, thus ofte i-seid les, thus ofte this ant this." "Ich habbe i-
don this to thus feole, ant thus feole sithen." Cause is the seste totagge.] Cause is hwi
thu hit dudest, other hulpe othre ther-to, other thurh hwet hit bigon. "Sire, ich hit dude
for delit, for uvel luve, for biyete, for fearlac, for flatrunge." "Sire, ich hit dude for
uvel, thah ther ne come nan of." "Sire, mi lihte ondswere other mine lihte lates tulden
him earst up-o me." "Sire, of this word com other, of this dede wreaththe ant uvele
wordes." "Sire, the acheisun is this hwi thet uvel leasteth yet." "Thus wac wes min
heorte." Euch, efter thet he is, segge his totagges: mon as limpeth to him, wummon
thet hire rineth. For her nabbe ich nan i-seid bute for-te munegin mon other wummon
of theo the to ham falleth thurh theo the beoth her i-seide as on urn. Thus of theose six
wriheles despoile thi sunne ant make hit naket i thi schrift, as Jeremie leareth: Effunde
sicut aquam cor tuum. "Sched ut ase weater thin heorte." Yef eoile schet of a feat,
yet ter wule leaven in sum-hwet of the licur; yef milc schet, the heow leaveth. Yef win
sched, the smeal leaveth. Ah weater geath al somet ut: alswa sched thin heorte - thet
is, al thet uvel thet is i thin heorte. Yef thu ne dest nawt, lo, hu grurefulliche Godd seolf
threateth the thurh Naum the prophete: Ostendam gentibus nuditatem tuam et
regnis ignominiam tuam et proitiam super te abhominationes tuas. "Thu naldest
nawt unwreo the to the preost i schrifte, ant ich schal schawin al naket to al folc thi
cweadschipe, ant to alle kinedomes thine scheome sunnen, to the kinedom of eorthe,
to the kinedom of helle, to the kinedom of heovene, ant trussin al thi schendfulnesse o
thin ahne necke, as me deth o the theof the me leat to demen, ant swa with al the
schendlac thu schalt trusse ant al torplin into helle." O, seith Sein Beornard, quid
confusionis, quid ignominie erit, quando dissipatis foliis et dispersis universa
nudabitur turpitudo. Sanies apparebit.
"O," seith Sein Beornard, "hwuch schendlac,
ant hwuch sorhe bith ther ed te dome, hwen alle the leaves schule beon towarplet, ant
al thet fulthe schaweth him, ant wringeth ut thet wursum bivoren al the wide worlt,
eorth ware ant heovenes, nawt ane of werkes, ah of idelnesses, of wordes ant of
thohtes the ne beoth i-bet her, as Seint Anselme witneth: Omne tempus impensum
requiretur a vobis, qualiter sit expensum. "Euc tide ant time schal beo ther i-
rikenet, hu hit wes her i-spenet." Quando dissipatis foliis, et cetera. "Hwen alle the
leaves," he seith, Sein Beornard, "schulen beo towarplet" - he biheold hu Adam ant
Eve, tha ha hefden i the frumthe i-suneget, gedereden leaves ant makeden wriheles of
ham to hare schentfule limen. Thus doth monie efter ham. Declinantes cor suum in
verba malicie ad excusandas excusationes in peccatis.
    Schrift schal beon ofte i-maket, for-thi is i the Sawter, Confitebimur tibi, Deus,
confitebimur. Ant ure Laverd seolf seith to his deciples, Eamus iterum in Judeam.
"Ga we eft," seide he, "into Judee" - "Judee" spealeth "schrift," ant swa we i-findeth
thet he wende ofte ut of Galilee into Judee. "Galilee" spealeth "hweol," for-te learen us
thet we of the worldes turpelnesse ant of sunne hweol ofte gan to schrifte. For this is
the sacrement efter the weofdes sacrement, ant efter fulluht, thet te feond is lathest, as
he haveth to hali men him-seolf - sare his unthonckes i-beon hit - i-cnawen. Wule a
web beon ed en-chearre with a weater wel i-bleachet? A sol clath wel i-weschen? Thu
weschest thine honden in anlepi dei twien other thrien, ant nult nawt the sawle, Jesu
Cristes spuse - the eaver se ha is hwittre, se fulthe is senre upon hire, bute ha beo i-
wesschen - nult nawt to Godes cluppunge ofte umbe seove-niht wesschen hire eanes!
Confiteor, hali weater, beoden, hali thohtes, blesceunges, cneolunges, euch god word,
euch god werc wesscheth smeale sunnen the me ne mei alle seggen. Ah eaver is schrift
the heaved.
    Schrift schal beon on hihthe i-maket: yef sunne timeth bi niht, anan other ine marhen.
Yef hit timeth bi dei, ear then me slepe. Hwa durste slepen hwil his deadliche fa heolde
an i-tohe sweord upon his heaved? The neappith upon helle breord, ha torplith ofte al
in, ear ha least wenen. Hwa-se is i-fallen amid te bearninde fur - nis he mare then
amead yef he lith, bithencheth him hwenne he wule arisen? A wummon the haveth i-
losed hire nelde, other a sutere his eal, secheth hit anan-riht ant towent euch strea athet
hit beo i-funden - ant Godd, thurh sunne forloren, schal liggen unsoht seove dahes
fulle! Nihe thinges beoth thet ahten hihin to schrift: the pine thet okereth, for sunne is
the deofles feh thet he yeveth to okere ant to gavel of pine, ant eaver se mon lith lengre
in his sunne, se the gavel waxeth of pine i purgatoire other her other in helle: Ex usuris
et iniquitate, et cetera. The other thing is the muchele ant te reowthfule lure thet he
leoseth, thet na thing thet he deth nis Gode lic-wurthe. Alieni comederunt robur
ejus. The thridde is death, thet he nat hwether he schule thet ilke dei ferliche asteorven.
Fili, ne tardes, et cetera. The feorthe is secnesse, thet he ne mei thenche wel bute
ane of his uvel, ne speoken as he schulde, bute granin for his eche, ant grunte, mare
for his stiche then for his sunne. Sanus confiteberis et vivens. The fifte thing is
muche scheome thet hit is, efter val to liggen se longe, ant hure under the schucke. The
seste is the wunde thet eaver wurseth on hond, ant strengre is to healen. Principiis
obsta. [Sero] medicina paratur cum mala per longas. The seovethe thing is uvel
wune, thet Lazre bitacneth, the stonc - se longe he hefde i-lein i ther eorthe - o
hwam ure Laverd weop, as the Godspel teleth, ant risede ant mengde him-seolven, ant
yeide lude upon him ear he him arearde, for-te schawin hu strong hit is to arisen of uvel
wune, the roteth in his sunne. Seinte Marie! Lazre stonc of fowr dahes. Hu stinketh the
sunfule of fowr yer other of five! Quam difficile surgit quem moles male
consuetudinis premit. "O," seith Seint Austin, "hu earmliche he ariseth, the under
wune of sunne haveth i-lein longe." Circumdederunt me canes multi. "Monie
hundes," seith Davith, "habbeth biset me." Hwen gredi hundes stondeth bivore the
bord, nis hit neod yerde? As ofte as eani lecheth toward te ant reaveth the of thi mete,
nult tu as ofte smiten? Elles ha walden kecchen of the al thet tu hefdest. Ant tu alswa
thenne nim the yerde of thi tunge, ant as ofte as the dogge of helle kecheth ei god from
the, smit him anan-riht mid te yerde of thi tunge i schrift, ant smit him se lutherliche
thet him lathi ant drede to snecchen eft toward te. Thet dunt, of alle duntes, is him
dunte lathest. The hund the fret lether other awuri[e]th ahte - me hit beat anan-riht
thet he understonde for-hwi he is i-beaten; thenne ne dear he nawt eft do thet ilke. Beat
alswa mid ti tunge [i] schrift the hund of helle anan-riht, ant he wule beon ofdred to do
the eft swuch thucke. Hwa is se fol thet he seith bi the hund thet fret lether, "Abid athet
to-marhen! Ne beat tu him nawt yetten!" Ah, "anan-riht beat! Beat, beat anan-riht!"
Nis thing i the world thet smeorteth him sarre then deth swuch beatunge. Se me
deoppre wadeth i the feondes lei-ven, se me kimeth up leatere. The eahtuthe thing is
thet Seint Gregoire seith: Peccatum quod per penitentiam non diluitur, mox suo
pondere ad aliud trahit - thet is, "sunne thet nis sone i-bet, draheth anan an-other,"
ant thet eft the thridde, ant swa euch-an cundleth mare ant wurse cundel then the
seolve moder. The nihethe reisun is - se he ear biginneth her to don his penitence, se
he haveth to beten leasse i pine of purgatoire. This beoth nu nihe reisuns, ant monie ma
ther beoth, hwi schrift ah to beon i-maket aa on hihthe.
    Schrift ah to beon eadmod, as the puplicanes wes, nawt as the phariseus wes, the
talde his god-deden ant schawde thet hale forth, tha he schulde habben unw[r]ihen hise
wunden. For-thi, he wende unhealet - as ure Laverd seolf teleth - ut of the temple.
Eadmodnesse is i-lich theose cointe hearloz, hare gute-feastre, hare flowinde cweise
thet ha putteth eaver forth. Ant yef hit is eatelich, ha schawith hit yet eateluker i riche
monnes ehnen, thet ha habben reowthe of ham ant yeoven ham god the reathere.
Hudeth hare hale clath, ant doth on alre uvemest fite-rokes al totorene. O this ilke wise,
eadmodnesse eadmodliche bigileth ure Laverd ant biyet of his god with seli truandise:
hudeth eaver hire god, schaweth forth hire poverte, put forth hire cancre, wepinde ant
graninde bivore Godes ehnen, halseth meadlesliche on his derve passiun, on his deore-
wurthe blod, on his fif wunden, on his moder teares, o the ilke tittes thet he seac, the
milc thet hine fedde, on alle his halhene luve, o the deore druerie thet he haveth to his
deore spuse - thet is, to cleane sawle, other to Hali Chirche - on his death o rode, for
hire to biyeotene. With thus ane-wil ropunge, halseth efter sum help to the wrecche
meoseise, to lechni with the seke, to healen hire cancre. Ant ure Laverd, i-halset swa,
ne mei for reowthe wearnen hire ne sweamen hire with warne - nomeliche swa as he
is se unimete large, thet him nis na thing leovere then thet he mahe i-finden acheisun
for-te yeovene. Ah hwa-se yelpeth of his god, as doth i schrift theos prude, hwet neod
is ham to helpe? Moni haveth a swuch manere to seggen hire sunnen thet hit is wurth
a dearne yelp, ant hunteth efter here-word of mare halinesse.
    Schrift ah to beon scheomeful: bi thet te folc of Israel wende ut thurh the Reade Sea,
thet wes read ant bitter, is bitacnet thet we moten thurh rudi scheome - thet is, i soth
schrift ant thurh bitter penitence - passin to heovene. God riht is, wat Crist, thet us
scheomie bivore mon, the foryeten scheome tha we duden the sunne bivore Godes
sihthe. Nam omnia nuda sunt et aperta oculis ejus, ad quem nobis sermo. "For al
thet is, al is naket," seith Seinte Pawel, "ant open to his ehnen, with hwam we schulen
rikenin alle ure deden." Scheome is the measte deal, as Seint Austin seith, of ure
penitence: Verecundia pars est magna penetentie. Ant Sein Bernard seith thet na
deore-wurthe yim-stan ne deliteth swa muchel mon to bihalden as deth Godes ehe the
rude of monnes neb the riht seith hise sunnen. Understond wel this word. Schrift is a
sacrement, ant euch sacrament haveth an i-licnesse ute-with of thet hit wurcheth in-
with - as hit is i fulluht: the wesschunge withuten bitacneth the wesschunge of sawle
withinnen. Alswa i schrift: the cwike rude of the neb deth to understonden thet te
sawle, the wes bla ant nefde bute dead heow, haveth i-caht cwic heow ant is i-rudet
feire. Interior tamen penitentia non dicitur sacramentum, set exterior vel puplica
vel solempnis.
    Schrift schal beo dredful, thet tu segge with Jerome, Quociens confessus sum,
videor michi non esse confessus. "As ofte as ich am i-schriven, eaver me thuncheth
me unschriven," for eaver is sum foryeten of the totagges. For-thi, seith Seint Austin,
Ve laudabili hominum vite, si remota misericordia discutias eam - thet is, "the
beste mon of al the world, yef ure Laverd demde him al efter rihtwisnesse, ant nawt
efter mearci, wa schulde him i-wurthen." Set misericordia superexaltat judicium.
"Ah his mearci toward us weieth eaver mare then the rihte nearewe."
    Schrift schal beon hopeful. Hwa-se seith as he con, ant deth al thet he mei, Godd ne
bit na mare. Ah hope ant dred schulen aa beon i-mengt togederes. This for-te bitacnin
wes i the alde lahe i-haten thet te twa grindel-stanes ne schulde na-mon twinnin. The
neothere, the lith stille ant bereth hevi charge, bitacneth fearlac, the teieth mon from
sunne, ant is i-heveget her with heard for-te beo quite of heardre. The uvere stan
bitacneth hope, the eorneth ant stureth hire i gode werkes eaver with trust of muche
mede. Theos twa na-mon ne parti from other, for as Sein Gregoire seith, Spes sine
timore luxuriat in presumptionem. Timor sine spe degenerat in desperationem.
"Dred withuten hope maketh mon untrusten, ant hope withute dred maketh over-
trusten." Theos twa untheawes, untrust ant over-trust, beoth the deofles tristen, ther
thet wrecche beast seldene edstearteth. Triste is ther me sit mid te grea-hunz for-te
kepe the heare, other tildeth the nettes ayein him. Toward an of theos twa is al thet he
sleateth, for ther beoth his grea-hunz, ther beoth his nettes. Untrust ant over-trust
beoth, of alle sunnen, nest te yete of helle. With dred, withuten hope - thet is, with
untrust - wes Caymes schrift ant Judasen, for-hwi ha forferden. With hope, withute
dred - thet is, with over-trust - is the unselies sahe, the seith i the Sawter, Secun-
dum multitudinem ire sue non queret. "Nis nawt Godd," quoth ha, "se grim as ye
him fore makieth." "Na?" he seith, Davith. "Yeoi he," ant seith thenne, Propter quid
irritavit impius Deum? Dixit enim in corde suo non requiret. On alre earst he
cleopeth the over-trusti unbilevet. "The unbilevet, with hwon gremeth he Godd almihti?
With thon thet he seith, 'Nule he nawt se nearowliche demen as ye seggeth.'" Yeoi,
siker ah he wule. Thus theos twa untheawes beoth to grimme robberes i-evenet. For
the an - thet is, over-trust - reaveth Godd his rihte dom ant his rihtwisnesse. The
other - thet is, untrust - reaveth him his milce. Ant swa ha beoth umben to fordon
Godd seolf, for Godd ne muhte nawt beon withuten rihtwisnesse, ne withuten milce.
Nu thenne, hwucche untheawes beoth evening to theose the wulleth Godd acwellen on
hare fule wise? Yef thu art to trusti ant haldest Godd to nessche for-te wreoke sunne,
sunne liketh him, bi thin tale. Ah bihald hu he wrec in his heh engel the thohte of a
prude, hu he wrec in Adam the bite of an eappel, hu he bisencte Sodome ant Gommorre,
were ant wif ant wenchel, the nome-cuthe burhes, al a muche schire, dun into helle
grunde - ther-as is nu the Deade Sea thet na-wiht cwikes nis inne - , hu he i Noes
flod al the world adrencte, bute eahte i the arche, hu he in his ahne folc Israel, his
deorling, grimliche awrec him ase ofte as ha gulten: Dathan, ant Abyron, Chore ant his
feren, the othre alswa the he sloh bi feole thusendes, ofte for hare gruchunge ane. On
other half loke, yef thu havest untrust of his unimete milce, hu lihtliche ant hu sone
Seinte Peter, efter thet he hefde forsaken him, ant thet for a cwene word, wes with him
i-sahtnet, hu the theof o rode, the hefde aa i-lived uvele, in a stert-hwile hefde ed him
milce with a feier speche. For-thi, bitweone theos twa, untrust ant over-trust, hope ant
dred beon aa i-feiet togederes.
    Schrift yet schal beo wis, ant to wis mon i-maket - of uncuthe sunnen, nawt to
yunge preostes - yunge, ich segge, of wit - ne to sotte alde. Bigin earst ed prude, ant
sech alle the bohes th'rof as ha beoth th'ruppe i-writene, hwuch falle to the. Th'refter
alswa of onde, ant ga we swa dune-ward, rawe bi rawe, athet to the leaste. Ant drah
togedere al the team under the moder.
    Schrift ah to beo soth: ne lih thu nawt o the-seolf. For as Seint Austin seith, Qui
causa humilitatis de se mentitur, fit quod prius ipse non fuit, id est, peccator.
"The seith leas on him-seolf thurh to muchel eadmodnesse, he is i-maket sunful, thah
he ear nere." Sein Gregoire seith thah, Bonarum mentium est culpam agnoscere
ubi culpa non est. "Cunde of god heorte is to beon offearet of sunne ther-as nan nis
ofte," other weie swithre his sunne sum-chearre then he thurfte. Weien hit to lutel is
ase uvel other wurse. The middel wei of meosure is eaver guldene. Drede we us eavre,
for ofte we weneth for-te don a lutel uvel ant doth a great sunne; ofte wel to donne, ant
doth al to cweade. Segge we eaver thenne with Seinte Anselme, Etiam bonum nos
trum est aliquo modo corruptum, ut possit non placere, aut certe displicere Deo.
Paulus: Scio quod non est in me, hoc est in carne mea, bonum.
Na god in us nis
of us: ure god is Godes. Ah sunne is of us ant ure ahne. "Godes god, hwen ich hit do,"
quoth he, Seint Anselme, "swa o summe wise min uvel hit forgneaieth: other ich hit do
ungleadliche, other to ear, other to leate, other leote wel th'rof, thah na-mon hit nute,
other walde thet ei hit wiste, other yemelesliche do hit, other to unwisliche, to muchel
other to lutel. Thus eaver sum uvel mongleth him with mi god thet Godes grace yeveth
me, thet hit mei lutel likin Godd, ant mislikin ofte." Seinte Marie! Hwen the hali mon
seide thus bi him-seolf, hu mahe we hit witerliche seggen bi us wrecches?
    Schrift ah to beon willes - thet is, willeliche, unfreinet, nawt i-drahen of the as thin
unthonkes. Hwil thu const seggen eawt, sei al uneasket. Me ne schal easki nan, but for
neode ane, for of the easkunge mei uvel fallen bute hit beo the wisre. On other half,
moni mon abit for-te schriven him athet te nede tippe. Ah ofte him liheth the wrench
thet he ne mei hwen he wule, the nalde tha he mahte. Na mare cangschipe nis then
setten Godd tearme, as thah grace were his as he bere hire in his purs to neomen up-o
grace th'rin i the tearme as he him-seolf sette. Nai, beal ami, nai. The tearme is i Godes
hond, nawt i thi bandun. Hwen Godd beot hit te, reach to ba the honden, for withdrahe
he his hond, thu maht th'refter lokin. Yef uvel other other-hwet ned te to schrifte - lo,
hwet seith Seint Austin: Coacta servicia Deo non placent. "Servises i-nedde ne
cwemeth nawt ure Laverd," thah no-the-leatere, betere is o thene no. Nunquam sera
penitentia si tamen vera. "Nis neaver to leate penitence thet is sothliche i-maket," he
seith eft him-seolven. Ah betere is, as Davith seith, Refloruit caro mea et ex voluntate
mea confitebor ei - thet is, "mi flesch is i-fluret, bicumen al neowe, for ich chulle
schrive me ant herie Godd willes." Wel seith he "i-fluret," to bitacnin wil-schrift, for
the eorthe al unnet ant te treon alswa openith ham ant bringeth forth misliche flures. In
Canticis: flores apparuerunt in terra nostra. Eadmodnesse, abstinence, culvres
unlathnesse, ant othre swucche vertuz beoth feire i Godes ehnen, ant swote i Godes
nease, smeallinde flures. Of ham make his herbearhe in-with the-seolven, for his delices,
he seith, beoth ther for-te wunien: Et delicie mee esse cum filiis hominum - in
libro Proverbiorum.
    Schrift ah to beon ahne. Na-mon ne schal i schrift wreien bute him-seolven, ase
forth as he mei. This ich segge for-thi thet swuch aventure bitimeth to sum mon other
to sum wummon thet ha ne mei nawt fulleliche wreien hire-seolven, bute ha wreie
othre. Ah bi nome, no-the-leatere, ne nempni ha nawt the ilke, thah the schrift-feader
wite wel toward hwam hit turne - ah "a munk," other "a preost," nawt "Wilyam" ne
"Water," thah ther ne beo nan other.
    Schrift schal beo stude-vest to halde the penitence ant leave the sunne, thet tu segge
to the preost: "Ich habbe stude-festliche i thonc ant in heorte this sunne to forleten ant
do the penitence." The preost ne schal nawt easki the yef thu wult theonne-vorth
forhate thi sunne; inoh is thet tu segge thet tu hit havest on heorte treoweliche to donne
thurh Godes grace, ant yef thu fallest eft th'rin, thet tu wult anan-riht arisen thurh
Godes help ant cumen ayein to schrifte. Vade et amplius noli peccare. "Ga," quoth
ure Laverd to a sunful wummon, "ant have wil thet tu nult sungi na mare." Thus ne
easkede he nan other sikernesse.
    Schrift ah to beon bithoht bivore longe. Of fif thinges with thi wit gedere thine
sunnen of alle thine ealdes - of childhad, of yuhethehad gedere al togederes. Th'refter
gedere the studen thet tu in wunedest, ant thench yeorne hwet tu dudest in euch stude
sunderliche ant in euch ealde. Th'refter sech al ut ant trude thine sunnen bi thine fif
wittes, th'refter bi alle thine limen i hwuch thu havest i-suneget meast other oftest.
Aleast, sunderliche bi dahes ant bi tiden.
    Nu ye habbeth alle i-haved, as ich understonde, the sixtene stucchen the ich bihet to
dealen, ant alle ich habbe tobroken ham ow, mine leove sustren, as me deth to children,
the mahten with unbroke bread deien on hunger. Ah me is - thet wite ye! - moni
crome edfallen. Secheth ham ant gederith, for ha beoth sawle fode.
    Thulli schrift, thet haveth thus thes sixtene stucchen, haveth the ilke muchele mihten
thet ich earst seide: threo ayein the deovel, threo on us-seolven, ant threo ayeines the
world - deore-wurthe over gold or, ant yimmes of Ynde.
    Mine leove sustren, this fifte dale, the is of schrift, limpeth to alle men i-liche; for-thi
ne wundri ye ow nawt thet ich toward ow nomeliche nabbe nawt i-speken i this dale.
Habbeth thah to ower bihove this lutle leaste ende. Of alle cuthe sunnen, as of prude, of
great other of heh heorte, of onde, of wreaththe, of slawthe, of yemeles, of idel word,
of untohene thohtes, of sum idel herunge, of sum fals gleadunge, other of hevi murnunge,
of ypocresie, of mete, of drunch to muchel other to lutel, of gruchunge, of grim chere,
of silences i-brokene, of sitten longe ed thurl, of ures mis i-seide withute yeme of
heorte, other in untime, of sum fals word, of sware, of plohe, of i-schake lahtre, of
schede cromen other ale, of leote thinges muhelin, rustin other rotien, clathes unseowet,
bireinet, unwesschen, breoke nep other disch, other biseo yemelesliche ei thing thet me
with feareth other ahte to yemen, of keorfunge, of hurtunge, thurh unbisehenesse -
of alle the thinges the beoth i this riwle the beoth misnumene, of alle thulliche thing
schrive hire euche wike eanes ed te leaste, for nan se lutel nis of theos thet te deovel
naveth enbrevet on his rolle. Ah schrift hit schrapeth of, ant maketh him to leosen
muchel of his hwile. Ah al thet schrift ne schrapeth of, al he wule o Domes-dei rede ful
witerliche for-te bicleopie the with: a word ne schal ther wontin. Nu thenne, ich reade,
yeoveth him to writen thet leaste thet ye eaver mahen, for na meoster nis him leovere,
ant hwet-se he writ, beoth umben to schrapien hit of cleanliche. With na thing ne mahe
ye matin him betere. To euch preost mei ancre schriven hire of swucche utterliche
sunnen the to alle bifalleth. Ah ful trusti ha schal beon o the preostes god-lec thet ha
allunge schaweth to, hu hire stonde abute flesches temptatiuns, yef ha is swa i-fondet
- bute i deathes dute. Thus, thah, me thuncheth thet ha mei seggen: "Sire, flesches
fondunge thet ich habbe - other habbe i-haved - geath to vorth up-o me thurh mi
theafunge. Ich am ofdred leste ich ga drivinde other-hwiles to swithe forth-ward mine
fol thohtes, ant fule umbe-stunde, as thah ich huntede efter licunge. Ich mihte thurh
Godes strengthe schaken ham ofte of me yef ich were cwicliche ant steale-wurthliche
umben. Ich am offearet sare thet te delit i the thoht leaste to longe ofte, swa thet hit
cume neh skiles yettunge." Ne dear ich thet ha deopluker ne witerluker schrive hire to
yung preost her-abuten, ant yet of this inoh-reathe him walde thunche wunder. Ah to
hire ahne schrift-feader, other to sum lif-hali mon, yef ha mei him habben, culle al the
pot ut, ther speowe ut al thet wunder, ther with fule wordes, thet fulthe, efter thet hit
is, tuki al to wundre, swa thet ha drede thet ha hurte his earen thet hercneth hire
sunnen. Yef ei ancre nat nawt of thulliche thinges, thonki yeorne Jesu Crist, ant halde
hire i drede. The deovel nis nawt dead, thet wite ha, thah he slepe.
    Lihte gultes beteth thus anan bi ow-seolven, ant thah seggeth ham i schrift hwen ye
thencheth ham on as ye speoketh mid preoste. For the leaste of alle, sone se ye
underyeoteth hit, falleth bivoren ower weoved o cros to ther eorthe, ant seggeth Mea
culpa! "Ich gulte! Mearci, Laverd!" The preost ne thearf for na gult, bute hit beo the
greattre, leggen other schrift on ow then thet lif thet ye leadeth efter theos riwle. Ah
efter the absolutiun, he schal thus seggen: "Al thet god thet tu eaver dest, ant al thet
uvel thet tu eaver tholest for the luve of Jesu Crist in-with thine ancre-wahes, al ich
engoini the, al ich legge up-o the i remissiun of theose, ant foryevenesse of alle thine
sunnen." Ant thenne sum lutles i-hweat he mei leggen upon ow, as a Salm other twa,
Pater nostres, Aves, tene other tweolve. Disceplines echi to, yef him swa thuncheth.
Efter the totagges the beoth i-writen th'ruppe, he schal the sunne demen mare other
leasse. A sunne ful foryevelich mei wurthe ful deadlich thurh sum uvel totagge the lith
ther-bisiden. Efter schrift falleth to speoken of penitence - thet is, deadbote - ant
swa we habbeth in-yong ut of this fifte dale into the seste.

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