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Seventeenth Century

Eighteenth Century



Calendar: August. Medieval Manuscript, c1426. BnF.


The Life of Our Lady

by John Lydgate

O thoughtful hearté, plunged in distress
     With slumber of sloth this hugé winter night,
Out of the sleep of mortal heaviness
     Awake again and look upon the light
     Of thilké star that with her beamés bright
And with the shining of her shenés merrie,
Is wont to gladden all our hemispheré.

.     .      .     .     .

This star in beauty passeth Pleiades
     Both of sky risyng and of shenés clear,
Bootes, Arcturus, and als Iades,
     And Esperus whanné it doth appear:
     For this is Spica1 with her brighté spear
That toward eve, at midnight and at morrow,
Down from the heaven adaweth2 all our sorrow

And dryeth up the bitter tearés wete
     Of Aurorá after the morrow gray
That she in weeping doth on flowers flete,3
     In lusty April and in freshé May,
     And cometh Phoebus the bright sunnés day
With his wain gold-yborned4 bright and fair,
To enchace the mystés of our cloudy air.

1. Spica, the brightest star in the constellation of Virgo.
2. Scares away.
3. Drop.
4. Burnished.

Garnett, Richard, ed. English Literature: An Illustrated Record. Vol I.
New York: The Macmillan Company, 1903. 186-187.

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