Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Book I eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 285 pages of information about Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Book I.


Come, come away, fraile, seely, fleshly wight,
  Ne let vaine words bewitch thy manly hart, 470
  Ne divelish thoughts dismay thy constant spright. 
  In heavenly mercies hast thou not a part? 
  Why shouldst thou then despeire, that chosen art?[*]
  Where justice growes, there grows eke greater grace,
  The which doth quench the brond of hellish smart, 475
  And that accurst hand-writing[*] doth deface. 
Arise, Sir knight, arise, and leave this cursed place.


So up he rose, and thence amounted streight. 
  Which when the carle beheld, and saw his guest
  Would safe depart for all his subtill sleight, 480
  He chose an halter from among the rest,
  And with it hung himselfe, unbid unblest. 
  But death he could not worke himselfe thereby;
  For thousand times he so himselfe had drest,[*]
  Yet nathelesse it could not doe him die, 485
Till he should die his last, that is, eternally.

* * * * *


Her faithfull knight faire Una brings
to house of Holinesse,
Where he is taught repentance, and
the way to heavenly blesse.


What man is he, that boasts of fleshly might
  And vaine assurance of mortality,
  Which all so soone as it doth come to fight
  Against spirituall foes, yeelds by and by,
  Or from the field most cowardly doth fly? 5
  Ne let the man ascribe it to his skill,
  That thorough grace hath gained victory. 
  If any strength we have, it is to ill,
But all the good is Gods, both power and eke will.


But that, which lately hapned, Una saw, 10
  That this her knight was feeble, and too faint;
  And all his sinews woxen weake and raw,
  Through long enprisonment, and hard constraint,
  Which he endured in his late restraint,
  That yet he was unfit for bloudy fight:  15
  Therefore to cherish him with diets daint,
  She cast to bring him, where he chearen might. 
Till he recovered had his late decayed plight.


There was an auntient house[*] not farre away,
  Renowmd throughout the world for sacred lore, 20
  And pure unspotted life:  so well they say
  It governd was, and guided evermore,
  Through wisedome of a matrone grave and hore
  Whose onely joy was to relieve the needes
  Of wretched soules, and helpe the helpelesse pore:  25
  All night she spent in bidding of her bedes,
And all the day in doing good and godly deedes.


Project Gutenberg
Spenser's The Faerie Queene, Book I from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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