Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

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For þe forwarde þat we fest in þe fyrst ny3t,And þou trystyly þe trawþe and trwly me haldez,Al þe gayne þow me gef, as god mon schulde.Þat oþer munt for þe morne, mon, I þe profered,Þou kyssedes my clere wyf — þe cossez me ra3tez.For boþe two here I þe bede bot two bare myntes boute scaþe. Trwe mon trwe restore, Þenne þar mon drede no waþe. At þe þrid þou fayled þore, And þerfor þat tappe ta þe.’For hit is my wede þat þou werez, þat ilke wouen girdel,Myn owen wyf hit þe weued, I wot wel for soþe.Now know I wel þy cosses, and þy costes als,And þe wowyng of my wyf: I wro3t hit myseluen.I sende hir to asay þe, and sothly me þynkkezOn þe fautlest freke þat euer on fote 3ede;As perle bi þe quite pese is of prys more,So is Gawayn, in god fayth, bi oþer gay kny3tez.Bot here yow lakked a lyttel, sir, and lewté yow wonted;Bot þat watz for no wylyde werke, ne wowyng nauþer,Bot for 3e lufed your lyf; þe lasse I yow blame.’Þat oþer stif mon in study stod a gret whyle,So agreued for greme he gryed withinne;Alle þe blode of his brest blende in his face,Þat al he schrank for schome þat þe schalk talked.Þe forme worde vpon folde þat þe freke meled:’Corsed worth cowarddyse and couetyse boþe!In yow is vylany and vyse þat vertue disstryez.’Þenne he ka3t to þe knot, and þe kest lawsez,Brayde broþely þe belt to þe burne seluen:’Lo! þer þe falssyng, foule mot hit falle!For care of þy knokke cowardyse me ta3tTo acorde me with couetyse, my kynde to forsake,Þat is larges and lewté þat longez to kny3tez.Now am I fawty and falce, and ferde haf ben euerOf trecherye and vntrawþe: boþe bityde sor3e and care!

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I biknowe yow, kny3t, here stylle, Al fawty is my fare; Letez me ouertake your wylle And efte I schal be ware.’Thenn lo3e þat oþer leude and luflyly sayde:’I halde hit hardily hole, þe harme þat I hade.Þou art confessed so clene, beknowen of þy mysses,And hatz þe penaunce apert of þe poynt of myn egge,I halde þe polysed of þat ply3t, and pured as cleneAs þou hadez neuer forfeted syþen þou watz fyrst borne;And I gif þe, sir, þe gurdel þat is golde-hemmed,For hit is grene as my goune. Sir Gawayn, 3e mayeÞenk vpon þis ilke þrepe, þer þou forth þryngezAmong prynces of prys, and þis a pure tokenOf þe chaunce of þe grene chapel at cheualrous kny3tez.And 3e schal in þis Nwe 3er a3ayn to my wonez,And we schyn reuel þe remnaunt of þis ryche fest ful bene.’ Þer laþed hym fast þe lorde And sayde: ‘With my wyf, I wene, We schal yow wel acorde, Þat watz your enmy kene.”Nay, for soþe,’ quoþ þe segge, and sesed hys helme,And hatz hit of hendely, and þe haþel þonkkez,’I haf soiorned sadly; sele yow bytyde,And he 3elde hit yow 3are þat 3arkkez al menskes!And comaundez me to þat cortays, your comlych fere,Boþe þat on and þat oþer, myn honoured ladyez,Þat þus hor kny3t wyth hor kest han koyntly bigyled.Bot hit is no ferly þa3 a fole madde,And þur3 wyles of wymmen be wonen to sor3e,For so watz Adam in erde with one bygyled,And Salamon with fele sere, and Samson eftsonez — Dalyda dalt hym hys wyrde — and Dauyth þerafterWatz blended with Barsabe, þat much bale þoled.Now þese were wrathed wyth her wyles, hit were a wynne huge
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To luf hom wel, and leue hem not, a leude þat couþe.

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For þes wer forne þe freest, þat fol3ed alle þe seleExellently of alle þyse oþer, vnder heuenryche þat mused; And alle þay were biwyled With wymmen þat þay vsed. Þa3 I be now bigyled, Me þink me burde be excused.’Bot your gordel’, quoþ Gawayn, ‘God yow for3elde!Þat wyl I welde wyth guod wylle, not for þe wynne golde,Ne þe saynt, ne þe sylk, ne þe syde pendaundes,For wele ne for worchyp, ne for þe wlonk werkkez,Bot in syngne of my surfet I schal se hit ofte,When I ride in renoun, remorde to myseluenÞe faut and þe fayntyse of þe flesche crabbed,How tender hit is to entyse teches of fylþe;And þus, quen pryde schal me pryk for prowes of armes,Þe loke to þis luf-lace schal leþe my hert.Bot on I wolde yow pray, displeses yow neuer:Syn 3e be lorde of þe 3onder londe þer I haf lent inneWyth yow wyth worschyp — þe wy3e hit yow 3eldeÞat vphaldez þe heuen and on hy3 sittez — How norne 3e yowre ry3t nome, and þenne no more?”Þat schal I telle þe trwly,’ quoþ þat oþer þenne,’Bertilak de Hautdesert I hat in þis londe.Þur3 my3t of Morgne la Faye, þat in my hous lenges,And koyntyse of clergye, bi craftes wel lerned,Þe maystrés of Merlyn mony hatz taken — For ho hatz dalt drwry ful dere sumtymeWith þat conable klerk, þat knowes alle your kny3tez at hame; Morgne þe goddes Þerfore hit is hir name: Weldez non so hy3e hawtesse Þat ho ne con make ful tame — ‘Ho wayned me vpon þis wyse to your wynne halleFor to assay þe surquidré, 3if hit soth were Þat rennes of þe grete renoun of þe Rounde Table;Ho wayned me þis wonder your wyttez to reue,

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