"Same old Bill, eh Mable!" eBook

Edward Streeter
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 124 pages of information about "Same old Bill, eh Mable!".
we willen and hoaten th{ae}t alle ure treowe heom healden deadliche ifoan.  And for th{ae}t we willen th{ae}t this beo stedef{ae}st and lestinde, we senden yew this writ open, iseined with ure seel, to halden a-manges yew me hord.

  Witnesse us selven {ae}t Lundene, thane eghtetenthe day on the monthe
  of Octobre, in the two and fowertighthe yeare of ure cruninge.

And this wes idon {ae}tforen ure isworene redesmen, Boneface archebischop on Kanterburi, Walter of Cantelow, bischop on Wirechestre, Simon of Muntfort, eorl on Leirchestre, Richard of Clare, eorl on Glowchestre and on Hurtforde, Roger Bigod, eorl on Northfolke and marescal on Engleneloande, Perres of Sauveye, Willelm of Fort, eorl on Aubemarle, Iohan of Pleisseiz, eorl on Warewike, Iohan Geffre{e}s sune, Perres of Muntfort, Richard of Grey, Roger of Mortemer, James of Aldithel; and {ae}tforen othre inoghe.

  {P} And al on tho ilche worden is isend in-to {ae}vrihce othre shcire
  over al th{ae}re kuneriche on Engleneloande, and ek in-tel Irelonde.

This document presents at first sight many unfamiliar forms, but really differs from Modern English mainly in the spelling, which of course represents the pronunciation of that period.  The grammar is perfectly intelligible, and this is the surest mark of similarity of language; we may, however, note the use of send as a contraction of sendeth, and of oni for “any man” in the singular, while onie, being plural, represents “any men.”

The other chief variations are in the vocabulary or word-list, due to the fact that this Proclamation is older than the reigns of the first three Edwards, which was the period when so many words of Anglo-Norman origin entered our language, displacing many words of native origin that thus became obsolete; though some were exchanged for other native words.  We may notice, for example, fultume, “assistance”; holde, “faithful”; il{ae}rde and ileawede, “learned and unlearned”; unnen, “grant”; r{ae}desmen, “councillors”; kuneriche, “kingdom”; and so on.  I subjoin a closely literal translation, retaining awkward expressions.

{P} Henry, through God’s assistance, king in England, Lord in Ireland, Duke in Normandy, in Aquitaine, and Earl in Anjou, sendeth greeting to all his faithful, learned and unlearned, in Huntingdonshire; that wit ye well all, that we will and grant that which our councillors all, or the more deal (part) of them, that be chosen through us and through the land’s folk in our kingdom, have done and shall do in the worship of God and in our truth, for the benefit of the land, through the provision of the beforesaid councillors, be steadfast and lasting in all things without end.  And we command all our true-men, in the truth that they us owe, that they steadfastly hold, and swear to hold and to defend, the statutes that be made and be to make,
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"Same old Bill, eh Mable!" from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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