Bishop and Nobleman

Bishop & squire.
Bishop and squire

Dethe to the Bysshoppe

Mi lorde Sire Bisshop / with ȝowre mitre & crose
For al ȝowre riches / sotheli I ensure
For al ȝowre tresowre / so longe kepte in clos
Ȝowre worldli godes / & godes of nature
And of ȝowre shepe / the gostli dredeful cure
With charge comytted / to ȝowre [gosteli] prelacie
For to accounte(1) / ȝe shul be browȝt to lure
No wight is sure / that clymbeth ouer hye.
ȝowre: your
sotheli: truthfully

browȝt to lure: compelled to come(2)
wight: man, person

The Bysshop answereth

Mi herte trewly / is nowether glad ne meri
Of sodeyne tidinges / whiche that ȝe bringe
Mi festes turned / in to simple ferie
That for discomforte / me liste no thyng synge
The worlde contrarie / now to me In werkynge
That al folkes / can so disherite
He that al with-halte / allas atte owre partynge
And al shal passe / safe oneli owre merite.

ferie: [ordinary] weekday

Dethe to the Squyere

Come forthe Sire Squyer / right fressh of ȝowre arai
That can of daunces / al the newe gyse
Thowȝ ȝe bare armes / fressh horsed ȝisterdai
With spere & shelde / atte ȝowre vncouthe deuyse
And t[o]ke on ȝow / so many hye Emprise
Daunceth with vs / hit wille no better be
Ther is no sokoure / in no maner wise
For no man mai / fro dethes stroke fle.

gyse: fashion

hit: it

fro: from

The Squyere answereth

Sitthen that dethe / me holdeth in his lace
Ȝitte shal I speke / oo worde or I pace
Adieu al myrthe / adieu [now ] al solace
Adieu my ladyes / somme-tyme so fressh of face
Adieu beaute / plesaun[ce] & solace
Of dethes chaunge / eueri dai is pryme
Thynketh [o]n ȝowre sowles / or that deth manace
For al shal rote / & no man wote what tyme.
Sitthen: since, after, lace: noose, snare
ȝitte: yet, oo: a, or: before, pace: go

somme-tyme: formerly

or: before, manace: threatens
wote: knows


Footnotes: (1) (2)

account . . .: A factual report of one's life, works, duty, actions, & accomplishments;. Compare with Romans 14,12: "So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God" and 1st Peter 4,5: "Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead".
browȝt to lure...: The "lure" was the apparatus used by falconers to recall hawks (browȝt = brought).

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