In this manner we lost our Captain Thrasileon, but he left not his fame and honour.
When this was done wee packed up our treasure, which we committed to the sepulchre to keepe, and got out of the bounds of Platea, thus thinking with our selves, that there was more fidelity amongst the dead than amongst the living, by reason that our preyes were so surely kept in the sepulchre. So being wearied with the weight of our burthens, and well nigh tyred with long travell, having lost three of our soldiers, we are come home with these present cheats.
Thus when they had spoken in memory of their slaine companions, they tooke cups of gold, and sung hymns unto the god mars, and layd them downe to sleep. Then the old woman gave us fresh barley without measure, insomuch that my horse fed so abundantly that he might well thinke hee was at some banquet that day. But I that was accustomed to eat bran and flower, thought that but a sower kinde of meate. Wherfore espying a corner where lay loaves of bread for all the house I got me thither and filled my hungry guts therewith.
THE TWENTY-FIRST CHAPTER
How the Theeves stole away a Gentlewoman, and brought her to their den.
When night was come the Theeves awaked and rose up, and when they had buckled on their weapons, and disguised their faces with visards, they departed. And yet for all the great sleep that came upon me, I could in no wise leave eating: and whereas when I was a man I could be contented with one or two loaves at the most, now my huts were so greedy that three panniers full would scantly serve me, and while I considered these things the morning came, and being led to a river, notwithstanding my Assie shamefastnesse I quencht my thirst. And suddenly after, the Theeves returned home carefull and heavy, bringing no burthens with them, no not so much as traffe or baggage, save only a maiden, that seemed by her habit to be some gentlewoman borne, and the daughter of some worthy matron of that country, who was so fair and beautiful, that though I were an Asse, yet I had a great affection for her. The virgin lamented and tare her hair, and rent her garments, for the great sorrow she was in; but the theeves brought her within the cave, and assisted her to comfort in this sort, Weep not fair gentlewoman we pray you, for be you assured we wil do no outrage or violence to your person: but take patience a while for our profit, for necessity and poore estate hath compelled us to do this enterprise: we warrant you that your parents, although they bee covetous, will be contented to give us a great quantity of mony to redeeme and ransome you from our hands.