Cambridge, Trinity College R.3.21, Teksten

Trinity College R.3.21.

Her er en transskription af "þe daunce of Machabre", som den er skrevet i manuskriptet Trinity College R.3.21. Overskrifterne er på latin.

Teksten er en af de såkaldte A-tekster, ligesom f.eks. Ellesmere (EL 26 A 13). Der er dog lidt variationer i rækkefølgen mod slutningen, f.eks. kommer troubadouren ret sent i dansen, mens degnen og barnet bytter plads. De små røde linjenumre følger Ellesmere-manuskriptet.

I kongens tekst, der starter: »O worthy kyng most worþy«, har en senere hånd erstattet "worthy" med "noble". Den sidste linie af dronningens svar, »Our rymplid age seythe farewell a dewe«, er tilføjet af en senere hånd. Den samme hånd har tilføjet »sewe« i den sjette linie, så det rimer.

De fleste af illustrationerne på nærværende side er fra den franske Danse Macabre.



YE folks harde hertyd as a stone
Whyche to the world haue your aduertence
Lyke as hit shuld last euer in one
Where ys your wytte where ys your prouydence
5 To se afore þe soden vyolence
Of cruell dethe that byn so wyse & sage
Whyche sleeth allas by stroke of pestylence
Bothe yong & olde of hygh & low parage.

Deþe spareþ nat low nor hygh degre
10 Popys kyngs nor worthy Emperours
Whan þey shyne most in felycyte
He can abate þe fresshnes of her floures
Theyr bryght son clypson with hys shoures
Make theym plonge from þeyr sees full lowe
15 Maugre þe myght of all these conquerours
Fortune hath them from her whele ythrowe.

Consydereth thys ye folkys þat byn wyse
And hyt emprynteth in your memoryall
Lyke as the ensample whyche þat at paryse
20 I found depycte onys on a wall
Full notably as I reherse shall
Of a frensshe clerke takyng acqueyntaunce
I toke on me to translate all
Out of Frensshe Machabres daunce.

25 By whos aduyse & counsell at þe leste
Thorough þeyr streyngth & theyr mocion
I obeyed vnto hyr requeste
Therof to make a playn translacion
In englyssh tong of Intencion
30 That proude folks þat byn stoute & bolde
As in a myrrour to forne in þeyr reson
Theyr vgly fyn may clerely þerin beholde

By ensample þat þey in þeyr ententys
Amende her lyfe in euery maner age
35 The whyche Daunce at seynt Innocentys
Purtrayed ys with all þe surplusage
To shewe þat þys worlde ys but a pylgremage
Youen vnto vs our lyfes to correcte
And to declare the fyne of our passage
40 Ryght anon my style I wyll directe



O ye creatures that byn resonable
The lyfe desyryng whyche ys eternall
Ye may se her doctryne full notable
Your lyfe to lede whyche þat ys mortall
45 Therby to lerne in especyall
Howe ye shall trace þe daunce of Machabre
To man and woman alyche naturall
For dethe ne spareth hygh ne lowe degre.

In thys myrrour euery man may fynde
50 That hym behoueþ go opon þys daunce
Who goth before or who shall go behynde
All dependeth in godds ordenaunce
Wherfore yche man lowly take hys chaunce
Dethe spareþ nat pore nor bloode royall
55 Yche man þerfore haue thys in remembraunce
Of oon matyer god hath forgyd all

Døden til paven
Døden til paven

Døden til paven

Mors ad Papam.
Ye þat byn set most in dignite
Of all astatis in þe erthe spirituall
And lyke as petyr hath þe souereynte
60 Ouer þe churche and stats temporall
Vppon þys daunce ye furst begyn shall
As most worþy lorde & gouernour
For all þe worshyp of your astate papall
And of all þe lordshyp to god ys þe honour


Responsio Pape
65 Furst me behoueþ þe daunce for to lede
Whyche sate in þe erthe hyghest in my see
Thastate ys full perylous whoso take hede
To occupy Petyrs dignite
But for all þat dethe may I nat fle
70 On þys daunce with other forto trase
For whyche all oþer who prudently can see
Ys lytylll worthe þat doþ so sone passe

Døden til kejseren

Mors ad Imperatorem
Syr Emperour lord of all grounde
Souereyn prince & hyghest of noblesse
75 Ye must forsake of golde your appyll rounde
Sceptyr & swere & all your hygh prowesse
Behynde leue your tresour & rychesse
And with oþer to my daunce obey
Ageyns my myght ys worthe non hardynes
80 All Adams childre all must þey dey


Responsio Imperatoris
I not to whom that I may appele
Towchyng dethe whyche doþ me constreyne
Ther ys no gynne to helpe my quarele
But spade & pykes my graue to atteyne
85 A sympyll shete þer ys nomore to seyne
To wrap in my body & vysage
Wheropon sore I me compleyne
That lordys gret haue lytyll avauntage.

Døden til kejserinden

Death to the Empresse
Lete see youre hande my lady dame empresse
Have no disdayne with me for to daunce
Ye may ley aside all youre richesse
Youre fresshe atire devisyd of pleasaunce
Youre soleyne chere youre straunge countynaunce
Youre clothes of golde moste vncouthely wrought
Hauyng of dethe full lytill remembraunce
But now I see well all this is come to nought.


The Empresse answerethe
What avaylythe gold riches or perre
Or what avaylethe hyghe blode or gentillesse
Or what availethe gentilnes or beaute
What is worthe highe porte or strangenesse
Dethe seythe cheke mate to all suche veyn noblesse
All worldly poure may me nat avayle
Raunsoun kynrede frenshipe & worthynesse
Dethe is come myne hyghe estate to assaylle.

Døden til kardinalen
Døden til kardinalen

Døden til kardinalen

Mors ad Cardinalem
89 Ye be abasshyd hit semeth & in drede
90 Syr Cardinall hit sheweth by your chere
But yet forthy ye folow shall in dede
With other folks my daunce for to lere
Your gret aray all shall ye leue here
Your hat of rede your vestur of gret coste
95 All þese þyngs rekenyd well in fere
In grete honour good auyse ys loste.


Responsio Cardinalis
I haue grete cause certys þys ys no fayle
To be abasshyd & gretly dredyn me
Syþ deþe ys comyn sodenly me to assayle
100 That I shall [neuer] hereaftyr cloþyd be
In gryce nor ermyn lyke vnto my degre
My hat of rede leue hit in dystresse
By whyche I haue lernyd well and se
Howe worldly ioy endeth in heuynesse.

Døden til kongen

Mors ad Regem
105 O noble kyng most worþy of renowne
Com forþe anon for all your worþynes
That whilom had about yow enuyroune
Grete ryalte & passyng hygh nobles
But ryght anon all your gret hyghnes
110 Soole from your men in haste ye shall hit lete
Who moste haboundeþ here in grete ryches
Shall bere with hym only but a shete.


Responsio Regis.
I haue nat lernyd here afore to daunce
No daunce in sothe of fotyng so swage
115 Wherfore I se by clene demonstraunce
What pryde ys worthe or force of hygh lynage
Dethe all fordothe þys ys hys vsage
Gret and small þat in þys world soiorne
Who ys most meke I holde he ys most sage
120 For we shall all þorough deþe to asshes turne.

Døden til patriarken
Døden til patriarken

Døden til patriarken

Mors ad Patriarcham
Syr Patriarke all your humble chere
Ne quyteth yow nat nor your humylyte
Your dobyll crosse of golde and stones clere
Your power hoolly & your dignyte
125 Som oþer shall of verrey equyte
Possede anone as I reherse can
Trusteþ neuer þat ye shall pope be
For only hope deceueth many a man


Responsio Patriarche
Worldly honour gret tresour & ryches
130 Haþe me disceuyd soþfastly in dede
Myne olde ioyes byn tornyd to dystres
What auayleþ hit suche tresour to possede
Hyt clymeth vp a fall haþe for hys mede
Gret astate folke waste out of nombre
135 Who mounteþ hygh hit ys sure & no drede
Grete burdyn to hym oft doþ incombre

Døden til connétablen

Mors ad Constabularium
Hit ys my ryght to arest yow & constreyne
With vs to daunce my mastyr syr Constable
For more strong þen euer was Charlemayne
140 Deþe haþe aforsyd & more worshipable
For hardynes nor knyghthode þys ys no fable
Nor strong armour of plats nor of mayle
What geyneþ armes of folks most notable
Whan cruell dethe lyste hem to assayle.


Responsio Constabularii
145 My purpose was & hoole intencion
To assayle Castell & myghty forteres
And bryng folke to my subieccion
To seke honour fame & gret ryches
But I se well all worldly prowes
150 Dethe can abate whyche ys a gret dyspyte
To hym alone sorow & eke swetnes
For ageyne dethe ys founde no respyte

Døden til ærkebiskoppen
Døden til ærkebiskoppen

Døden til ærkebiskoppen

Mors ad Archiepiscopum.
Syr Archebysshop why do ye withdraw
So frowardly as hit were by dysdeyne
155 Ye must aproche to my mortall law
To contrary hit were but in veyne
For day by day þer ys noon oþer gayne
Dethe at hande purseweth euery coost
Preste & det must be yoldyn yow agayne
160 And at on day men countyn with her hoost


Responsio Archiepiscopi.
Allas I wot nat to what party for to flee
For drede of deþe I haue so gret distres
To ascape hys myght I can no refute see
That whoso know hys constreynt & dures
165 He wolde take reson to maystres
A dew my tresor my pompe & pryde also
My peyntyd chambres my porte & my freshenes
Thyng þat behoueþ nedys must be do.

Døden til ridderen/baronen

Mors ad Baronem.
Ye þat among lordys & barones
170 Haue had so long worshyp & renowne
Foryete your trumpes & your clariownes
Thys ys no dreme nor simylacione
Somtyme your custome & intencion
Was with ladyes to daunse in the shade
175 But oft hit happeþ in conclusion
One man brekeþ þat anoþer made


Responsio Baronis
Full oft syþe I haue be auctorysyd
To hygh empryses & þyngs of gret fame
Of hygh & lowe my thanke also deuysyd
180 Cherysshyd with ladyes & wemen hygh of fame
Nor neuer on me was put no defame
In lords court whyche þat was notable
But deþes stroke haþe made me lame
Undyr heuyn in erþe ys noþing stable.

Døden til prinsessen

Mors ad Reginam
185 Com forþe anon my lady good Prynces
Ye must also go opon þys daunce
Nought may auayle your gret straungenes
Neyþer your bewte nor your gret plesaunce
Your ryche aray nor your dalyaunce
190 That whylom cowde so many holde in hond
In loue for all your dobyll variaunce
Ye must as now þys fotyng vndyrstond


Responsio Regine
Alasse I se þer [ys] non other bote
Dethe haþ in erþe no lady nor masteras
195 And on þe daunce yet must I nedys fote
For þer ys quene countesse ne Duchesse
Flowryng in bounte nor in her fayrenes
But she of deþe must passe þe passage sewe
When our beaute & counterfete fayrenes
200 Our rymplid age seythe farewell a dewe

Døden til biskoppen
Døden til biskoppen

Døden til biskoppen

Mors ad Episcopum.
My lord syr bysshop with myter and croys
For all your ryches soþly I yow ensure
For all your goodys kept in cloos
Your worldly goods & goods of nature
205 And of your shepe þe gostly dredefull cure
With charge comyttyd to your prelacy
For to accompt ye shall be brought to lure
No wyght ys sewre þat clymbeth ouer hy


Responsio Episcopi
My hert truly ys neyþer glad nor mery
210 Of soden tydyng whyche þat ye bryng
My fests byn tornyd in to a simple story
That for dyscomfort me lyst noþyng to syng
The world contraryed to me now in workyng
That all folks can so dysheryte
215 He all withholt alasse at our partyng
All þyng shall passe saue oonly our meryte

Døden til adelsmanden

Mors ad Armigerum
Com forþ syr Squyer ryght fressh in your aray
That can daunce of þe new gyse
Though ye bare harneys fresshe horses yesterday
220 With spere and shylde at vncouth deuyse
And toke on yow so many hygh empryse
Daunseþ with vs hit woll no bettyr be
Ther ys no socour in no maner wyse
For no man may fro deþes stroke fle.


Responsio Armigeri
225 Syþ þat deþe holdeþ me in hys lace
Yet shall I speke oon worde or I passe
A dew all myrþe a dew now all solace
A dew my ladyes whilom so fresshe of face
A dew beaute plesaunce & solace
230 Of dethes chaunge euery day ys prime
Thynke on yowre [soules] or þat deþe manace
For all shall rote & no man wote what tyme

Døden til abbeden
Døden til abbeden

Døden til abbeden

Mors ad Abbatem.
Com forþe syr Abbot with your brode hat
Be nat abasshyd þough ye haue syght
235 Grete ys yowre hede your body large & fat
Ye must com daunce þough ye be nat lyght
Leueþ your abbey to som oþer wyght
Your heyre ys of age your state to occupy
Who þat ys fattest I haue hym behyght
240 In hys graue shall sonnest putryfy


Responsio Abbatis
Of all þese þrets haue I non enuy
That I shall leue now all gouernaunce
But þat I shall as a cloysterer dy
The deþe ys to me a passyng gret greuance
245 My liberte nor in gret habundaunce
What may [they] avayle in any maner wyse
Yet aske I mercy with hertly repentaunce
Though in dying to late men hem aduyse

Døden til abbedissen

Mors ad Abbissam.
And ye my lady gentyll dam Abbasse
250 With your mantell large furryd & wyde
Your vayle your wympyll passyng of gret ryches
And bedys suftyr ye must now ley asyde
For to þys daunce I shal be your gyde
Though ye be tendre born of gentyll blode
255 Whyles þat ye lyue for your self prouyde
For aftyr deþe no man haþe good


Responsio Abbisse.
Allas þat deþe haþe þus for me ordeynyd
That in no wyse I may hit nat declyne
Though hit so be I haue full oft constreynyd
260 Breste & throte my notys out to twyne
My chekys round garnysshyd for to shyne
Vngurt full oft to walke at large
Thus cruell deþe doþ all astates fyne
Who haþ no shyp mot rowe in boot or barge.

Døden til fogeden

Mors ad Balliuum
265 Com forthe syr Bayly þat knowest all þe guyse
By your offyce of treuthe & ryghtwysnes
Ye must com to a new asyse
Extorcions & wrongs to redresse
Ye be somonyd as þe lawe byddeþ expresse
270 To yelde acompts þe iuge woll yow charge
Whyche haþ ordeynyd to exclude falsnesse
That euery man shal bere hys owne charge.


Responsio Balliui
O þou lord god þys ys an hard Iorne
To whyche afore I toke but lytell hede
275 My chaunce ys turnyd & þat forþynkeþ me
Whylom with Iugys what me lust to spede
Lay in my myght by labour oft for mede
But syþ þer ys no rescuse by batayle
I holde hym wyse þat can wel se in dede
280 Agayne deþe þat none apele may avayle

Døden til astrologen
Døden til astrologen

Døden til astrologen

Mors ad Astronomum
Com on master þat lokyst vp so ferre
With instruments of astronomy
To take þe grees & hyght of euery sterre
What may auayle all your astrology
285 Syth of Adam all þe genelagy
Made furst of god to walke opon þe grounde
Deþe doþ areste þus seyþ theology
And all shall dy for an appyll rounde


Responsio Astronomi
For all my craft konnyng or science
290 I can nat fynde no prouysion
Nor in sterres serche out no difference
By domefying nor calkelacion
Saue finally as in conclusion
For dyscryue our connyng euery dele
295 Ther ys no more by sentence of reson
Who lyueþ aryght must nedys dy well

Døden til borgeren

Mors ad Burgensem
Syr Burgeyse what do ye lengor tary
For all your honour & all your gret ryches
Though ye be strong deynous & contrary
300 Toward þys daunce ye must yow nedys dres
For all your tresour & larges
From other hit came & shall vnto straingers
He ys a foole þat in suche besynes
Wot nat for whom he stuffeþ hys garners


Responsio Burgensis
305 Certys to me hit ys gret dysplesaunce
To leue all þys & may hit nat assure
House rentys tresure & substaunce
Deþe all fordoþe suche ys hys nature
Therfore wyse ys no creature
310 That setteþ hys hert on good þat must dysseuer
The worlde hyt lent and hit woll recure
And who most haþe lothest dyeth euer

Døden til kannikken
Døden til kannikken

Døden til kannikken

Mors ad Canonicum
And ye syr Chanon with many gret prebende
Ye may no lengor haue dystribucion
315 Of gold & syluer largely to dyspende
For there ys now no consolacion
But daunce with vs for all your hygh renowne
For þough dethe stode vppon þe brynke
Ye may þerof haue no dylacion
320 Deþe comeþ ay when men leste on hym thynke.


Responsio Canonici
My benyfyce with many personage
God wote full lyte may me now comfort
Deþe haþe of me so gret auauntage
All my ryches may me nat dysport
325 Amyse of grey þou wyst ayene resorte
Vnto þe world surplyce & prebende
All ys veyneglory truly to reporte
To dy well yche man shuld intende

Døden til købmanden

Mors ad Mercatorem
Ye ryche merchaunt ye must loke hyderward
330 That past hast full many diuerse londe
On horse on foote hauyng most reward
To lucre and to wynnyng as I vnderstond
But now to daunce ye must yeue me your hond
For al your labour full lytell auayleþ now
335 A dew veyneglory boþe of fre and bond
None more couetyn þen þey þat haue ynough


Responsio Mercatoris
By many an hyll & many a strong vale
I haue trauaylyd with many marchandyse
Ouer þe see do cary many a bale
340 To sondry Iles mo þen I can deuyse
My hert inward all freteþ with couetyse
But all for nought now deþe doþe me constreyne
For whyche I sey by recorde of þe wyse
Who all embraseþ lytyll shall atteyne

Døden til karteuseren
Døden til karteuseren

Døden til karteuseren

Mors ad Monachum Cartusie
345 Yeue me your hande with chekys dede & pale
Causyd of wache & long abstinence
Syr Charterer & your sylf auale
Vnto þys daunce with humble pacience
To stryue ayene may be no resistence
350 Lengor to lyue set nat your memory
Though I be loþsom as in apparence
Ayenst all men deþe haþ þe victory


Responsio Monachi Cartusie
Vnto þe worlde I was dede long agoone
By my ordre and my profession
355 Though euery man be he neuer so strong
Dredeþ to dy by kyndely mocion
Aftyr hys flesshly inclinacion
But plese hit to god my soule for to borow
From fendys myght & from dampnacion
360 Som arne þys day þat shall nat be tomorow

Døden til sergenten

Mors ad Sergeant
Com forthe syr Sergeant with your stately mace
Make no defence ne no rebellion
Hit may nat auayle to groge in þys case
Though ye be deynows of condicion
365 For nouþer pele ne yet peticion
May yow fraunchese to do nature wrong
For þere ys non so sturdy champion
Though he be myghty anoþer ys as strong


Responsio Sergeant
Howe dar þys deþe set on me areste
370 That am þe kyngs chosen offycer
Whyche yestyrday boþe est & weste
My offyce dyd full surquydouse of chere
But now þys day I am arestyd here
And can nat fle þough I had hit sworne
375 Eche man ys loþe to dy both ferr and nere
That haþ not lernyd for to dy aforne

Døden til munken
Døden til munken

Døden til munken

Mors ad Monachum
Syr monke also with your blak habyte
Ye may no lengor holde here soiorne
There ys noþyng þat may yow here respyte
380 Ageyne my myght yow for to socour
Ye must accompt touchyng your labour
Howe ye haue spent hit in worde dede & þought
To erþe & asshes turnyth euery flour
The lyfe of man ys but a þyng of nought


Responsio Monachi
385 I had leuer in þe cloyster be
At my booke & study my seruyce
Whyche ys a place contemplatyf to se
But I haue spent my lyfe in many wyse
Lyke as a foole dyssolute & nyse
390 God of hys mercy graunt me repentaunce
By chere outward harde to deuyse
All be nat mery þat men sene daunce.

Døden til ågerkarlen

Mors ad Usurarium
Thow vsurer loke vp & beholde
Unto wynnyng þou settyst all þy peyne
395 Whos couetyse wexeþ neuer colde
Thy gredy þrust so sore þe doþe constreyne
But þou shalt neuer to þy desyre atteyne
Suche an Etyke þy hert frete shall
But þat of pyte god hys hande refreyne
400 One perylous stroke shall make þe lesse all


Responsio Usurarii
Now me behoueþ sodenly to dy
Whyche ys to me gret peyne & greuaunce
Socour to fynde I se no maner wey
Of golde nor syluer by no cheuysaunce
405 Deþe þorough hys haste abydeþ no puruyaunce
Of folke blynde þat cannat loke well
Full oft happeþ by kynde & fatall chaunse
Some haue fayre eyen þat seen neuer adele

Den fattige mand

And vsure to god ys full gret offense
410 And in hys syght a grete abusion
The poore brougth per case for indigence
The ryche lent by false collusion
Oonly for lucre in hys intencion
Deþe shall hem boþe to accompts fet
415 To make rekenyng by computacion
No man ys quytte þat ys behynde of det.

Døden til lægen
Døden til lægen

Døden til lægen

Mors ad Phisisionem
Mastyr of physyk whyche on your vryne
So loke & gase & stare ayenst þe son
For all your craft & stody of medycyne
420 All þe practyk and science þat ye kon
Your lyff course so ferforþe ys ron
Agayne my myght your craft may nat endure
For all þe golde þat ye þerby haue won
Good leche ys he þat can hymsylf recouer


Responsio Phisisionis
425 Full long agone þat I went to physyk
Set my wytte & my diligence
In speculatyf & also in practyfe
To gete a name þorough my exccellence
To fynde remedy ageynes pestilence
430 Preseruatyues to staunche & to fyne
But I dar sey shortly in sentence
That agayne deþe ys worþe no medycyne

Døden til frieren

Mors ad Armigere
Ye þat be gentyll so fresshe & amerous
Of yeres yong flowryng in your grene age
435 Lusty free of hert & also desyrous
Full of deuyses & chaunges in your corage
Pleasaunt of porte of loke & of vysage
But all shall turne into asshes dede
For all beaute ys but a feynt ymage
440 Whyche steleþ awey or folke can take hede


Responsio Armigeri
Allas allas I can now no socour
Ayenst deþe for myself prouyde
A dew of youþe þe lusty fresshe flour
A dew veyneglory syþ I may nat abyde
445 A dew my seruyce vnto good Cupide
A dew my ladyes so fresshe & welbeseyne
For ayene dethe nothyng may abyde
And wyndes gret goon doune with lytell reyne

Døden til adelsdamen

Mors ad generosam feminam
Com forþe masteras of yeres yong & grene
450 Whyche holdeþ your lyfe & beaute souereyne
As fayre as ye were whylom polycene
Penolope and þe quene Elene
Yet on þys daunce þey wenten boþe tweyne
And so shall ye for all your straungenes
455 Though daunger long in loue haue be your reyne
Arestyd ys your chaunge of doubylnes


Responsio generose femine
O cruell deþe þat sparyst noon astate
To olde and yong þou art indifferent
To my beaute þou hast seyde chek mate
460 So hasty ys þy mortall iugement
For in my youþe þys was myne entent
To my seruice many man to haue lured
But she ys a foole shortly in sentement
That in her beaute ys to moche assured

Døden til advokaten
Døden til advokaten

Døden til advokaten

Mors ad Aduocatum
465 Syr Aduocate short processe to make
Ye must cun plete tofore þe hygh iuge
Many a quarell ye haue vndyrtake
And for lucre to folke haue done refuge
Yet my fraunches ys so large & huge
470 That counsell may noon avayle may but trouþe
He scapeth nat wysely of deþe þe grete deluge
Tofore þe dome who ys tente with slouþe


Responsio Aduocati
Of ryght & Reson by nature ys lawe
I cannat put agayn deþe no fence
475 Nor by no slouthe me kepe nor withdrawe
For all my wytte or all my gret prudence
To apele from hys gret sentence
Noþyng in erþe may a man preserue
Ageyns hys myght to make resystence
480 God quyteþ all men lyke as þey deserue

Døden til troldmanden

Mors ad Tregitorem
513 Master Johnn Rykell somtyme tregetour
Of noble henry þe kyng of Englond
515 And of Fraunce þe myghty conquerour
For all þy sleyghts & tornyng of þy hond
Thow must come nere my daunce to vndyrstond
Nought may auayle all þy conclusions
For dethe shortly nouther on see nor lond
520 Ys nat dysceuyd by none illusions


Responsio Tregetoris
What may auayle makyng naturall
Or any craft shewyd by apparence
Or course of sterres aboue celestiall
Or of the heuyn all þe influence
525 Agayns deþe to stonde at dyffence
Leger demayne now helpeþ me ryght nought
Fare well my craft & suche sapience
For deþe mo mastryes þen I hath wrought

Døden til sognepræsten
Døden til sognepræsten

Døden til sognepræsten

Mors ad Curatum
O syr Curate þat ben here present
530 That had your worldly inclinacion
Your hert entere your stody & entent
Moste of your tythes & your oblacion
Whyche shuld haue bene of conuersacion
Myrrour to other lyght & exemplary
535 Lyke your deserte shalbe your guerdon
And to yche labour dewe ys þe salary


Responsio Curati.
Maugre my wyll I must condescende
For deþe assayleþ euery lyuely thyng
Here in þys world who can comprehende
540 Hys soden stroke & hys vnware commyng
Farewell tythes & farewell myne offryng
I must go counten in ordre by and by
And for my shepe make a iust rekonyng
And who þat so hym quyteth I holde hym happy.

Døden til nævningen

Mors ad Iuratum
481 Master Iorrour whyche þat at assyses
And at shyrys questys dyd enbrase
Departedyst lond lyke to þy deuyses
And who most gaue most was in þy grace
485 The pore man lost londe and place
For golde thou cowdest folks disheryte
But lat se with þy teynt face
Toforne þe iuge how thou can þe quyte


Responsio Iurati
Somtyme I was clepyd in my contre
490 The belwedyr & þat was nat alyte
Nat louyd but drad of hygh & low degre
For whom me lyst by craft I conde endyte
Hangyng þe trew and þe thefe respyte
All þe contrey by my worde was ladde
495 But I dar sey soþly for to wryte
Of my deþe many a man ys gladde.

Døden til troubadouren

Mors ad Ministrallum
O thou mynstrall þat canst so note & pipe
Vnto folks for to do plesaunce
By þe ryght hande I shall þe grype
500 With þese other to go opon my daunce
There ys no scape nouþer auoydaunce
On none syde to contrary my sentence
For in musyk by craft & concordaunce
Who mastyr ys sheweþ hys science


Reponsio Ministralli
505 The new daunce ys to me so straunge
Wondyr diuerse & passyngly contrary
The dredefull fotyng doth so oft chaunge
And þe mesure so oft tymes vary
Whyche vnto me now ys noþyng necessary
510 Yef hit were so þat I myght astert
But many a man yef I shall nat tary
Oft tyme daunseþ but noþing of hert

Døden til bonden

Mors ad Operarium
545 Thow laborer whyche þat in sorow and peyne
Hast lad þy lyfe & in gret trauayle
Thow must eke daunce & þerfore nat disdeyne
For yef þou do hit may þe nat avayle
And cause why þat I the assayle
550 Ys thys fro þe for to dysseuer
Thys false world þat can so folk fayle
He ys a foole þat weneþ to lyue euer

Bonden / arbejderen

Responsio Operarii
I haue wysshyd aftyr deþe full oft
All þough I wold haue fled hym now
555 I had leuer to haue leyne on soft
In wynde & rayne to go at þe plough
With spade and pykes labore for my prowe
Deluyd and dyched & at þe plough goone
For I may sey and tell platly anon howe
560 Here in þys world Reste ys þer noone

Døden til franciskaneren
Døden til franciskaneren

Døden til franciskaneren

Mors ad Fratrem
Syr Corduler to yow my hand ys raught
To þe daunce yow to couete & lede
Whyche in your prechyng han full oft taught
How that I am most gastfull for to drede
565 Albe þat folke take therto noone hede
Yet ys there non so strong ne so hardy
But deþe dar hym areste & let for no mede
For deþe yche hour ys present and redy


Responsio Fratris
What may þys be þat in þys world no man
570 Here to abyde may haue no sewrte
Streyngþe nor ryches nor what so þat he can
Of worldly wysdom all ys but vanyte
In grete astate nor yet in pouerte
Ys noþyng [founde] þat may fro deþe defende
575 For whyche I sey to hygh and lowe degre
Wyse ys þat synner þat doþe hys lyfe amende

Døden til degnen
Døden til degnen

Døden til degnen

Mors ad Clericum
593 O syr clerke suppose ye to be fre
Fro my daunce your self to defende
595 That wende to haue rysen vnto hygh degre
Of benefyce or som grete prebende
Who clymbeþ hyest som tyme shall dyscende
Lat no man groge agayne hys fortune
But take a gree what euer god hym sende
600 Whyche punyssheþ when tyme ys oportune


Responsio Clerici
Shall I þat am so yong a Clerke now dy
Of my seruyce I haue no bettyr guerdon
Ys þer no gayne nor no bettyr way
No better fraunches nor proteccion
605 Deþe makeþ alwey a short conclusion
To late were when men were on þe brynke
The world shall fayle and all possession
For moche fayleþ of þyngs þat me þynke

Døden til barnet

Mors ad infantem
A lytyll infant þat were but late bore
Shape in þys world to haue no plesaunce
Thow must with other go here before
580 Be lad in haste by fatall ordinaunce
Lerne on now to go vppon my daunce
Ther may none age in soþe ascape therfro
Late euery wyght haue þys in remembraunce
Who lengest lyueþ most shall suffre woo.


Responsio infantis.
585 A A A one worde I cannat speke
I am so yong I was borne yestyrday
Deþe ys so hasty on me to be wreke
And lyst no lengor to make delay
I am but now borne & now go my way
590 Of me no more no tale shalbe tolde
The wyll of god no man withstond may
Assone dyeth a yong shepe as an olde.

Døden til eremitten

Mors ad Heremitam
609 Ye þat haue lyuyd long in wyldyrnes
610 There contynuyd long in abstinence
At þe last yet ye must yow dres
Of my daunce to haue experyence
For þer ayenst ys no resystence
Take now leue of þyne hermytage
615 Wherfore yche man aduerte þys sentence
That þys lyfe here ys no sure herytage


Responsio Heremite.
Lyfe in deserte callyd solytary
May ayene deþe haue no respyte nor space
At vnset howre hys commyng doþ nat tary
620 And for my parte welcom be godds grace
Thankyng hym with humble chere & face
Of all hys yeftys & gret habundaunce
Finally affermyng in þys place
No man ys ryche þat lakkeþ suffysaunce


Mors iters ad Heremitam
625 That ys welsayd & so shuld euery wyght
Thanken hys god & all hys wytts dresse
To loue & drede hym with all hys hert & myght
Syth deþe to ascape ne may be no sekernesse
As men deserue god quyteþ of ryghtwysnesse
630 To ryche & pore vppon euery syde
A bettyr lesson þer can no clerk expresse
Than tyll to morow ys no man sure to abyde

Den døde konge
Den døde konge

Den døde konge

Rex mortuus
Ye folke þat loken opon þys portreture
Beholdyng here all astats daunce
635 Seeth what ye be and what ys your nature
Mete vnto wormes nought allys in substaunce
And haueþ thys myrrour ay in remembrance
How I ly here whylom a myghty kyng
To all astats a trew resemblaunce
640 That wormes foode ys þe ende of your lyuyng


Doctor Machabre
Man ys nat elles playnly for to þynke
But as wynde whyche ys transitory
Passyng ay forþe wheþer he wake or wynke
Toward þys daunce haue þys in memory
645 Remembryng ay þere ys no better victory
In þys lyfe here þan fle syn at þe leste
Then shall ye reygne in paradyse with glory
Happy ys he þat makeþ in heuyn hys feste

Yet be ther folks mo þen syx or seuyn
650 Reklese of lyfe many maner wyse
Lyke as ther were nowþer hell nor heuyn
Suche false errour lat euery man dyspyse
For holy seynts & old clerks wyse
Wretyn þe contrary her falsenes to deface
655 To lyue well hyt ys þe best empryse
To euery man when he shall hens pase

What ys mannys lyfe but a countenaunce
Of a puff of wynde þat ys transitory
As may be well perseivyd by þys daunce
Wherfore ye þat loke on þys story
Kepeþ thentent þerof in your memory
And hyt shall stere yow in goodly haste
To eschew peyne and com to glory
Well ys hym þat so may at þe laste



657 O ye my lordys & maystrs all in fere
Of auenture þat shall þys daunce rede
Lowly I pray with all my hert entere
660 To correcte where þat ye se nede
For nought ellys I aske for my mede
But goodly support of þys translacion
And with fauour to suppowayle drede
Benygnely in your correccion

665 Oute of þe frensshe I drew hit of entent
Nat worde by worde but oonly þe substaunce
And from Paryse to Englond sent
Only of purpose yow to do plesaunce
Rude of langage I was nat born in fraunce
670 Holde me excusyd my name ys Iohn Lydgate.
Of oþer tong I haue no suffysaunce
Theyr coryous metres in englyssh to translate

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