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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 242 pages of information about The Golden Asse.
handle such as they found in the house.  And one of them being of more courage, and of greater stature than the rest, spake unto his fellows and sayd, Tush you are but boyes, take mens hearts unto you, and let us enter into every part of the house, and such as we find asleep let us kill, and so by that meanes we shall escape without danger.  Verily ye three Judges, I confess that I drew out my sword against those three Citizens, but I thought it was the office and duty of one that beareth good will to this weale publique, so to doe, especially since they put me in great fear, and assayed to rob and spoyl my friend Milo.  But when those cruell and terrible men would in no case run away, nor feare my naked sword, but boldly resist against me, I ran upon them and fought valiantly.  One of them which was the captain invaded me strongly, and drew me by the haire with both his hands, and began to beat me with a great stone:  but in the end I proved the hardier man, and threw him downe at my feet and killed him.  I tooke likewise the second that clasped me about the legs and bit me, and slew him also.  And the third that came running violently against me, after that I had strucken him under the stomacke fell downe dead.  Thus when I had delivered my selfe, the house, Myne host, and all his family from this present danger, I thought that I should not onely escape unpunished, but also have some great reward of the city for my paines.

Moreover, I that have always been clear and unspotted of crime, and that have esteemed myne innocency above all the treasure of the world, can finde no reasonable cause why upon myne accusation I should be condemned to die, since first I was mooved to set upon the theeves by just occasion.  Secondly, because there is none that can affirm, that there hath been at any time either grudge or hatred between us.  Thirdly, we were men meere strangers and of no acquaintance.  Last of all, no man can prove that I committed that fact for lucre or gaine.

When I had ended my words in this sort, behold, I weeped againe pitteously, and holding up my hands I prayed all the people by the mercy of the Commonweale and for the love of my poore infants and children, to shew me some pitty and favour.  And when my hearts were somewhat relented and mooved by my lamentable teares, I called all the gods to witnesse that I was unguilty of the crime, and so to their divine providence, I committed my present estate, but turning my selfe againe, I perceived that all the people laughed exceedingly, and especially my good friend and host Milo.  Then thought I with my selfe, Alasse where is faith?  Where is remorse of conscience?  Behold I am condemned to die as a murtherer, for the safeguard of myne Host Milo and his family.  Yet is he not contented with that, but likewise laugheth me to scorne, when otherwise he should comfort and help mee.

THE FOURTEENTH CHAPTER

How Apuleius was accused by two women, and how the slaine bodies were found blowne bladders.

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