The Brus by John Barbour


[English harshness to prisoners]

	In Rawchryne leve we now the king
	In rest foroutyn barganyng,
	And off his fayis a quhile speke we
	That throu thar mycht and thar powste
5	Maid sic a persecucioune
	Sa hard, sa strayt and sa feloune
	On thaim that till hym luffand wer
	Or kyn or freynd on ony maner
	That at till her is gret pite.
10	For thai sparyt off na degre
	Thaim that thai trowit his freynd wer
	Nother off the kyrk na seculer,
	For off Glaskow Byschop Robert
	And Marcus off Man thai stythly speryt
15	Bath in fetrys and in presoune,
	And worthy Crystoll off Seytoun
	Into Loudoun betresyt was
	Throu a discipill off Judas
	Maknab, a fals tratour that ay
20	Wes off his dwelling nycht and day
	Quhom to he maid gud cumpany.
	It wes fer wer than tratoury
	For to betreys sic a persoune
	So nobill and off sic renoune,
25	Bot tharoff had he na pite,
	In hell condampnyt mocht he be.
	For quhen he him betrasyt had
	The Inglismen rycht with him rad
	In hy in Ingland to the king,
30	That gert draw him and hede and hing
	Foroutyn pete or mercy.
	It wes gret sorow sekyrly
	That so worthy a persoune as he
	Suld on sic maner hangyt be,
35	Thusgat endyt his worthynes.
	Off Crauford als Schyr Ranald wes
	And Schyr Bryce als the Blar
	Hangyt intill a berne in Ar.
	The queyn and als Dame Marjory,
40	Hyr dochter that syne worthily
	Wes coupillyt into Goddis band
	With Walter Stewart off Scotland,
	That wald on na wys langar ly
	In the castell off Kyldromy
45	To byd a sege, ar ridin raith
	With knychtis and squyeris bath
	Throu Ros rycht to the gyrth off Tayne.
	Bot that travaill thai maid in vayne,
	For thai off Ros that wald nocht ber
50	For thaim na blayme na yeit danger
	Out off the gyrth thame all has tayne
	And syne has send thaim everilkane
	Rycht intill Ingland to the king,
	That gert draw all the men and hing,
55	And put the ladyis in presoune
	Sum intill castell sum in dongeoun.
	It wes gret pite for till her
	The folk be troublyt on this maner.
[The siege of Kildrummy Castle]

	That tyme wes in Kyldromy
60	Wyth men that wycht and hardy
	Schyr Neile the Bruce and I wate weile
	That thar the erle was off Adheill.
	The castell weill vittalyt thai
	And mete and fuell gan purvay
65	And enforcyt the castell sua
	That thaim thocht na strenth mycht it ta.
	And quhen it to the king was tauld
	Off Ingland how thai schup till hauld
	That castell, he wes all angry
70	And callyt his sone till hym in hy
	The eldest and aperand ayr
	A young bacheler and stark and fayr
	Schyr Edward callyt off Carnauerane,
	That wes the sterkast man of ane
75	That men fynd mycht in ony countre
	Prynce of Walys that tyme wes he.
	And he gert als call erlys twa
	Glosyster and Harfurd war tha
	And bad thaim wend into Scotland
80	And set a sege with stalwart hand
	To the castell off Kyldromy.
	And all the halderis halyly
	He bad distroy for-owtyn ransoun
	Or bryng thaim till him in presoune.
85	Quhen thai the commaundment had tane
	Thai assemblyt ane ost onane
	And to the castell went in hy
	And it assegyt vigorusly
	And mony tyme full hard assaylyt.
90	Bot for to tak it yeit thai failyt
	For thai within war rycht worthy
	And thaim defendyt douchtely
	And ruschyt thair fayis oft agayne
	Sum beft sum woundyt sum alslayne
95	And mony tymys ische thai  wald
	And bargane at the barrais hald
	And wound thar fayis oft and sla.
	Schortly thai thaim contenyt sua
	That thai withoute disparyt war
100	And thocht till Ingland for to far
	For thai sa styth saw the castell
	And with that it wes warnyst weill
	And saw the men defend thaim sua
	That thai nane hop had thaim to ta,
105	Nane had thai done all that sesoune
	Gyff it ne had bene fals tresoun
	For thar with thaim wes a tratour.
	A fals lourdane a losyngeour
	Hosbarne to name maid the tresoun,
110	I wate nocht for quhat enchesoun
	Na quham with he maid that conwyn
	Bot as thai said that war within
	He tuk a culter hate glowand
	That yeit wes in a fyr brynnand
115	And went him to the mekill hall
	That then with corn wes fyllyt all
	And heych up in a mow it did, 
	Bot it full lang wes nocht thar hid
	For men sayis oft that fyr na prid
120 	But discovering may na man hid,
	For the pomp oft the prid furth schawis
	Or ellis the gret boist that it blawis,
	Na thar may na man fyr sa covyr
	Than low or rek sall it discovyr. 
125	Sa fell it her, for fyr all cler
	Son throu the thak-burd gan apper
	Fyrst as a stern syne as a mone
	And weill bradder tharefter sone
	The fyr out syne in bles brast
130	And the rek rais rycht wondre fast.
	The fyr our all the castell spred
	That mycht na force of man it red.
	Than thai within drew to the wall
	That at that tyme wes bataillit all
135	Within rycht as it wes withoute
	That bataillyne withoutyn dout
	Savit thar lyvis, for it brak
	Bles that thaim wald ourtak.
	And quhen thar fayis the myscheiff saw
140	Till armys went thai in a thraw
	And assaylyt the castell fast
	Quhar thai durst come for fyris blast,
	Bot thai within that myster had
	Sa gret defence and worthy mad
145	That thai full oft thar fayis rusit
	For thai nakyn perall refusyt,
	Thai travaillyt for to sauff thar lyffis
	Bot werd that till the end ay dryvis
	The warldis thingis sua thaim travaillyt
150	That thai on twa halfys war assailyt, 
	In with fyr that thaim sua broilyit
	And utouth with folk that thaim sua toilyit
	That thai brynt magre thaim the yat
	That, for the fyre that wes sua hate
155 	Thai durst nocht entyr sua in hy,
	Tharfor thar folk thai gan rely
	And went to rest for it wes nycht
	Till on the morn that day wes lycht.
[The surrender of Kildrummy and the death of Edward I]

	At sik myscheiff as ye her say
160	War thai within, the-quhethyr ay
	Thai thaim defendyt douchtely
	And contenyt thaim sa manlily
	That or day throu mekill payn
	Thai had muryt up thar yat agayn.
165	But on the morn quhen day wes lycht
	And sone wes ryssyn schynand brycht
	Thai without in hale bataill
	Come purvayt redy till assaill,
	Bot thai within that sua war stad 
170 	That thai vitaill na fewell had
	Quhar-with thai mycht the castell hald
	Tretyt fyrst and syne thaim yauld
	To be in-till the kingis will,
	Bot that to Scottis men wes ill 
175	As sone eftyr weill wes knawin
	For thai war hangyt all and drawyn.
	Quhen this cunnand thus tretyt wes
	And affermyt with sekyrnes
	Thai tuk thaim of the castell sone
180	And in-till schort tyme has done
	That all a quarter of Snawdoun
	Rycht till the erd thai tummyllyt doun
	Syne towart Ingland went thar way.
	Bot quhen the king Edward hard say
185	How Neill the Bruce held Kildromy
	Agayne his sone sa stalwartly,
	He gadryt gret chevalry
	And towart Scotland went in hy,
	And as in-till Northummyrland
190	He wes with his gret rout ridand
	A sekness tuk him in the way
	And put him to sa hard assay
	That he mycht nocht ga na ryd.
	Him worthit magre his abid
195	In-till ane hamillet tharby
	A litill toun and unworthy,
	With gret payne thidder thai him brocht.
	He wes sa stad that he ne mocht
	His aynd bot with gret paynys draw
200	Na spek bot giff it war weill law
	The-quhether he bad thai suld him say
	Quhat toun wes that that he in lay.
	'Schyr,' thai said, 'Burch-in-the-sand
	Men callis this toun in-till this land.'
205	'Call thai it Burch, als,' said he.
	My hop is now fordone to me
	For I wend never to thole the payne
	Of deid till I throu mekill mayn
	The burch of Jerusalem had tane,
210	My lyff wend I thar suld be gayne.
	In burch I wyst weill I suld de
	Bot I wes nother wys na sle
	Till other burch kep to ta.
	Now may I na wis forther ga.'
215	Thus pleynyeit he off his foly,
	As he had mater sekyrly
	Quhen he covyt certante
	Off that at nane may certan be,
	The-quhether men said enclosit he had
220	A spyryt that him answer maid
	Off thingis that he wald inquer.
	Bot he fulyt foroutyn wer
	That gaiff throuth till that creatur,
	For feyndys ar off sic natur
225 	That thai to mankind has invy
	For thai wate weill and witterly
	That thai that weill ar liffand her
	Sall wyn the sege quharoff thai wer
	Tumblyt throuch thar mekill prid.
230	Quharthrou oft-tymys will betid
	That quhen feyndys distrenyeit ar
	For till aper and mak answar
	Throu force of conjuracioun
	That thai sa fals ar and feloun
235	That thai mak ay thar answering
	Into doubill understanding
	To dissaiff thaim that will thaim trow.
	Insample will I set her now 
	Off a wer as I herd tell
240	Betwix Fraunce and the Flemyngis fell.
	The erle Ferandis modyr was
	Nygramansour, and Sathanas
	Scho rasyt and him askyt syne
	Quhat suld worth off the fechtyn
245	Betwix the Fraunce king and hyr sone,
	And he, as all tyme he wes wone,
	Into dissayt maid his answer
	And said till hyr thir thre vers her,
	'Rex ruet in bello tumilique carebit honore
250	Ferrandus comitissa tuus mea cara Minerva
	Parisius veniet magna comitante caterva.' 
	This wes the spek he maid perfay
	And is in Inglis toung to say, 
	'The king sall fall in the fechting
255	And sall faile honour off erding,
	And thi Ferand Mynerve my der
	Sall rycht to Parys went but wer,
	Folowand him gret cumpany
	Off nobill men and off worthy.'
260	This is the sentence off this saw
	That the Latyn gan hyr schaw.
	He callyt hyr his Mynerve
	For Mynerve ay wes wont to serve
	Him, till scho leffyt, at his divis
265	And for scho maid the samyn service
	His Mynerve hyr callyt he, 
	And als throu his sutelte
	He callyt hyr der hyr till dissaiff
	That scho the tyttar suld consaiff
270	Off his spek the undyrstanding
	That mast plesyt till hyr liking.
	This doubill spek sua hyr dissavit
	That throu hyr feill the ded ressavit,
	For scho wes off hyr answer blyth
275 	And till hyr sone scho tald it swyth,
	And bad him till the batell sped
	For suld victory haiff but dred.
	And he that herd hyr sermonuyng
	Sped him in hy to the fechting
280	Quhar he discomfyt wes and schent
	And takin and to Paris sent,
	Bot in the fechting nocht-forthi
	The king, throu his chevalry, 
	Wes laid at erd and lawit bath,
285	Bot his men helpyt him weill rath.
	And quhen Ferandis moder herd 
	How hyr sone in the bataill ferd
	And at he wes sua discomfyt,
	Scho rasyt the ill spyryt als tyt
290	And askyt quhy he gabyt had
	Off the answer that he hyr mad,
	And he said he had said suth all.
	'I said ye that the king suld fall
	In the bataill, and say did he,
295	And failyeid erding, as men may se.
	And I said that thi sone suld ga
	To Paris, and he did rycht sua,
	Folowand sic a mengye
	That never in his lyff-tyme he
300	Had sic a mengye in leding.
	Now seis thou I maid na gabbing.'
	The wyff confusyt wes perfay
	And durst no mar than till him say
	Thusgat throu doubill understanding
305	That bargane come till sic ending
	That the ta part dissavyt was.
	Rycht sagat fell yt in this cas.
	At Jerusalem trowit he
	Gravyn in the burch to be,
310	The-quhethyr at Burch-into-the-sand
	He swelt rycht in his awn land.
	And quhen he to the ded wes ner
	The folk that at Kildromy wer
	Come with presoneris that thai had tane,
315	And syne to the king ar gane
	And for to comfort him thai tald
	How thai the castell to thaim yauld
	And how thai till his will war brocht,
	To do off thame quhatever he thocht,
320	And askyt quhat men suld off thaim do.
	Than lukyt he angyrly thaim to
	And said grynnand, 'Hangis and drawys.'
	That wes wonder off sik sawis,
	That he that to the ded wes ner
325	Suld answer apon sic maner
	Foroutyn menyng and mercy.
	How mycht he traist on Hym to cry
	That suthfastly demys all thing
	To haiff mercy, for his criying,
330	Off him that throu his felony
	Into sic point had na mercy.
	His men his maundment has done
	And he deyt thatefter sone
	And syne wes brocht till berynes.
335	His sone syne king efter wes.
[Douglas and Boyd go from Rathlin to Arran]

	To the King Robert agayne ga we
	That in Rauchryne with his menye
	Lay till wynter ner wes gane
	And off that ile his mete has tane
340	James off Douglas wes angry
	That thai langar suld ydill ly
	And to Schyr Robert Boid said he,
	'The pure folk off thys countre
	Ar chargit apon gret maner
345	Off us that idill lyis her,
	And ik her say that in Arane
	Intill a styth castell off stane
	Ar Inglis men that with strang hand
	Haldys the lordschip off the land
350	Ga we thidder, and weill may fall
	Anoy thaim in sum thing we sall.'
	Schir Robert said, 'I grant thar-till,
	Till her mar ly war litill skill.
	Tharfor till Aran pas will we,
355	For I knaw rycht weill the countre
	And the castell rycht sua knaw I
	We sall cum thar sua prevely
	That thai sall haiff na persavyng
	Na yeit witting off our cummyng,
360	And we sall ner enbuschyt be
	Quhar we thar outecome may se.
	Sa sall it on na maner fall
	Na scaith thaim on sum wis we sall.'
	With that thai buskyt thaim on-ane
365	And at the king thar leiff has tane
	And went thaim furth syne on thar way.
	Into Kyntyr sone cummyn ar thai,
	Syne rowyt alwayis by the land
	Till that the nycht wes ner on hand,
370	Than till Arane thai went thar way
	And saufly thar aryvyt thai,
	And in a glen thar galay drewch
	And syne it helyt weill ineuch.
	Thar takyll ayris and thar ster
375	Thai hyde all on the samyn maner
	And held thar way rycht in the nycht
	Sua that or day wes dawyn lycht
	Thai war enbuschyt the castell ner
	Armyt apon thair best maner
380	And thoucht thai wate war and wery
	And for lang fastyng all hungry
	Thai thocht to hald thaim all preve
	Till that thai weill thar poynt mycht se.
[Douglas plunders the provisions being brought to Brodick Castle]
	Schir John the Hastingis at that tid
385	With knychtis off full mekill prid
	And squyeris and yemanry,
	And that a weill gret cumpany,
	Wes in the castell off Brathwik
	And oftsys quhen it wald him lik
390	He went huntyng with his menye
	And sua the land abandounyt he
	That durst nane warne to do his will.
	He wes into the castell still
	The tyme that James off Douglas
395	As Ik haiff tald enbuschit was.
	Sa hapnyt that tyme throu chance
	That with vittalis and purvyaunce
	And with clething and with armyng
	The day befor in the evynning
400	The undyr-wardane arivyt was
	With thre batis weill ner the place
	Quhar that the folk I spak off ar
	Prevely enbuschyt war.
	Syne fra tha batis saw thai ga
405	Off Inglismen thretty and ma
	Chargit all with syndry thingis.
	Sum bar wyne and sum armyngis,
	The remanant all chargit wer
	With thingis off syndry maner,
410	And other syndry yeid thaim by
	As thai war maistrys ydilly.
	Thai that enbuschyt war that saw
	All foroutyn dreid or aw
	Thar buschement on thaim thai brak
415	And slew all that thai mycht ourtak.
	The cry rais hidwysly and hey
	For thai that dredand war to dey
	Rycht as bestis gan rar and cry.
	Thai slew thaim foroutyn mercy.
420	Sua that into the samyne sted
	Weill ner fourty thar war dede.
	Quhen thai that in the castell war
	Hard the folk sa cry and rar
	Thai ischyt furth to the fechting,
425	Bot quhen the Douglas saw thar cummyng
	His men till him he gan rely
	And went till meit thaim hastily.
	And quhen thai off the castell saw
	Him cum on thaim foroutyn aw
430	Thai fled foroutyne mar debate
	And thai thaim folowit to the yate
	And slew of thaim as thai in past,
	Bot thai thair yate barryt fast
	That thai mycht do at thame na mar.
435	Tharfor thai left thaim ilkane thar
	And turnyt to the se agayne
	Quhar that the men war forouth slayn.
	And quhen thai that war in the batis
	Saw thar cummyng and wyst howgatis
440	Thai had discumfyt thar menye
	In hy thai put thaim to the se
	And rowyt fast with all thar mayne,
	Bot the wynd wes thaim agayne
	That sua hey gert the land-bryst rys
445	That thai moucht weld the se na wis.
	Then thai durst nocht cum to the land,
	Bot held thaim thar sa lang hobland
	That off the thre batis drownyt twa
	And quhen the Douglas saw it wes sua
450	He tuk armyng and cleything
	Vittalis wyne and other thing
	That thai fand thar and held thar way
	Rycht glaid and joyfull off thar pray.
[The king comes to Arran and is joined by Douglas and Boyd]

	Quhen this James off Douglas
455	And his menye throu Goddis grace
	War relevyt with armyng
	And with vittaill and clething
	Syne till a strenth thai held thar way
	And thaim full manly governyt ay
460	Till on the tend day that the king
	With all that war in his leding
	Aryvyt into that countre
	With thretty small galayis and thre.
	The king aryvyt in Arane
465	And syne to the land is gane
	And in a toune tuk his herbery, 
	And speryt syne specially
	Gyff ony man couth tell tithand
	Off ony strang man in that land.
470	'Yhis,' said a woman, 'Schyr perfay
	Off strang men I kan you say
	That ar cummyn in this countre,
	And schort quhile syne throu thar bounte
	Thai haff discomfyt our wardane 
475	And mony off his men has slane,
	Intill a stalwart place her-by
	Reparis all thar cumpany.'
	'Dame,' said the king, 'wald thou me wis
	To that place quhar thar repair is
480	I sall reward the but lesing,
	For thai ar all off my dwelling
	And I rycht blythly wald thaim se 
	And sua trow I that thai wald me.'
	'Yhis,' said scho, 'Schir I will blythly
485	 Ga with you and your cumpany
	Till that I schaw you thar repair.'
	'That is ineuch my sister fayr,
	Now ga we forth-wart,' said the king.
	Than went thai furth but mar letting
490	Folowand hyr as scho thaim led
	Till at the last scho schawyt a sted
	To the king in a wode glen
	And said, 'Schir, her saw I the men
	That yhe sper after mak logyng.
495	Her I trow be thar reparyng.'
	The king then blew his horn in hy
	And gert the men that wer him by
	Hald thaim still and all preve
	And syne agayn his horn blew he.
500	James off Douglas herd him blaw
	And he the blast alsone gan knaw
	And said, 'Sothly yon is the king,
	I knaw lang quhill syne his blawyng.'
	The thrid tym thar-with-all he blew
505	And then Schir Robert Boid it knew
	And said, 'Yone is the king but dreid
	Ga we furth till him better speid.'
	Than went thai till the king in hy
	And hm inclynyt curtasly,
510	And blythly welcummyt thaim the kimg
	And wes joyfull of thar meting
	And kissit thaim and speryt syne
	How thai had farne in thar outyne,
	And thai him tauld all but lesing.
515	Syne lovyt thai God off thar meting,
	Syne with the king till his herbery
	Went bath joyfull and joly.
[The king sends a man to Carrick to see if he might land there]

	The king apon the tother day
	Gan till his preve menye say,
520	'Ye knaw all weill and ye may se
	How we are out off our cuntre
	Banyst throu Inglismennys mycht
	And that that suld be ouris of rycht
	Throu thar maistrys thai occupy,
525	And wald alsua foroutyne mercy
	Giff thai haid mycht destroy us all.
	Bot God forbeid it suld sa fall
	Till us as thai mak manassyng
	For than war thar na recoveryng,
530	And mankind biddis us that we
	To procur vengeance besy be.
	For ye may se we haiff thre thingis
	That makis us oft monestingis
	For to be worthi wis and wycht
535	And till anoy thaim at our mycht.
	Ane is our lyffis saufte
	That on na wys suld sauft be
	Gyff thai had us at thar liking
	The tother that makys us eggyng
540	Is that thai our possessioune
	Haldis strenthly agayn resoun.
	The thrid is the joy that we abid
	Giff that it happyn as weill may tid
	That we wyn victour and maistry,
545	Till ourcum thar felony.
	Therfor we suld our hartis rais
	Sua that na myscheyff us abais
	And schaip us alwayis to that ending
	That beris in it mensk and loving.
550	And tharfor lordingis gyff ye se
	Amang you giff that it speidfull be
	I will send a man in Carrik
	To spy and sper our kynrik
	How it is led and freynd and fa.
555	And giff he seis we land may ta
	On Turnberys snuke he may
	Mak a fyr on a certane day
	And mak takynnyng till us that we
	May thar aryve in saufte.
560	And giff he seis we may nocht sua,
	Luk on na wys the fyr he ma.
	Sua may we thar-throu haiff wittring
	Off our passage or our dwelling.'
	To this spek all assentyt ar,
565	And than the king withoutyn mar
	Callyt ane that wes till him preve
	And off Carrik his countre,
	And chargyt him in les and mar
	As ye hard me divis it ar
570	And set him certane day to mai
	The fyr giff he saw it war sua
	That thai had possibilite
	To maynteyme wer in that cuntre.
	And he that wes rycht weill in will
575 	His lordis yharnyng to fullfill
	As he that worthy wes and leile
	And couth secreis rycht weill conseil
	Sad he wes boune intill all thing
	For to fulfill his commaunding,
580	And said he suld do sa wisely
	That na repruff suld efter ly
	Syne at the king his leiff has tane
	And furth apon his way is gane.
[Cuthbert the spy discovers that Percy, in Turnberry Castle,
controls Carrick]

	Now gais the messynger his way
585	That hat Cuthbert as I herd say.
	In Carrik sone aryvyt he
	And passyt throu all the countre,
	Bot he fand few tharin perfay 
	That gud wald off his maister say, 
590	For fele off thaim durst nocht for dreid,
	And other sum rycht into deid
	War fayis to the nobill king,
	That rewyt syne thar barganyng.
	Baith hey and law the land wes then
595	All occupyit with Inglismen
	That dispytyt atour all thing
	Robert the Bruce the douchty king.
	Carrik wes giffyn then halyly
	To Schir Henry the lord Persy
600	That in Turnberyis castell then
	Was with weill ner three hunder men,
	And dauntyt sagat all the land
	That all wes till him obeysand.
	This Cuthbert saw thar felony,
605	And saw the folk sa halely
	Be worthyn Inglis baith rich and pur
	That he to nane durst him discur,
	But thocht to leve the fyr unmaid,
	Syne till his maister went but baid
610	And all thar convyne till him tell,
	That wes sa angry and sa fell.
[The king thinks he sees a fire; he prepares to cross to Carrick; his hostess
predicts his ultimate success, and gives him her two sons]

	The king that intill Arane lay
	Quhen that cummyn wes the day
	That he set till his messinger
615	As Ik divisit you lang er
	Eftyr the fyr he lokyt fast
	And als sone as the none wes past
	Him thocht weill he saw a fyr
	Be Turnbery byrnand weill schyr,
620	And till his menye it gan schaw.
	Ilk man thocht weill that he it saw,
	Then with blyth hart the folk gan cry,
	'Gud king, speid you deliverly
	Sua that we sone in the evynnyng
625	Aryve foroutyn persayving.'
	'I grant,' said he. 'Now mak you yar,
	God furthyr us intill our far.'
	Then in schort time men mycht thaim se
	Schute all thar galayis to the se
630	And ber to se baith ayr and ster
	And other thingis that myster wer,
	And as the king apon the sand
	Wes gangand up and doun, bidand
	Till that his menye redy war,
635	His ost come rycht till him thar,
	And quhen that scho him halyst had
	A preve spek till him scho made
	And said, 'Takis gud kep till my saw,
	For or ye pas I sall you schaw
640	Off your fortoun a gret party, 
	Bot our all specially
	A wyttring her I sall you ma
	Quhat end that your purpos sall ta,
	For in this land is nane trewly
645	Wate thingis to cum sa weill as I.
	Ye pas now furth on your viage
	To venge the harme and the outrag
	That Inglismen has to you done,
	Bot ye wat nocht quhat-kyne forton
650	Ye mon drey in your werraying.
	Bot wyt ye weill withoutyn lesing
	That fra ye now haiff takyn land
	Nane sa mychty na sa strenththi of hand
	Sal ger you pas out off your countre
655	Till all to you abandounyt be.
	Within schort tyme ye sall be king
	And haiff the land at your liking
	And ourcum your fayis all,
	Bot fele anoyis thole ye sall
660	Or that your purpos end haiff tane,
	Bot ye sall thaim ourdryve ilkane.
	And that ye trowis this sekyrly
	My twa sonnys with you sall I
	Send to tak part of your travaill,
665	For I wate weill thai sall nocht faill
	To be rewardyt weill at rycht
	Quhen ye are heyit to your mycht.'
[A discourse on prophecy]

	The king that herd all hyr carping
	Thankit hyr in mekill thing,
670	For scho confort him sumdeill,
	The-quhethir he trowyt nocht full weill
	Hyr spek, for he had gret ferly
	How scho suld wyt it sekyrly,
	As it wes wounderfull perfay
675	How ony mannys science may
	Knaw thingis that ar to cum
	Determinabilly, all or sum,
	Bot giff that he inspyrit war
	Off Him that all thing evermar
680	Seys in his presciens
	As it war ay in presens,	680*
	As was David and Jeremy	681
	Samuell, Joell and Ysai,
	That throu His haly grace gan tell
685	Fele thingis that efter fell,	684
	Bot the prophetis sa thyn ar sawyn
	That nane in erd now is knawin.
	Bot fele folk ar sa curyous
	And to wyt thingis covatous
690	That thai, throu thar gret clergy	689	
	Or ellys throu thar devilry,
	On thir twa maneris makis fanding
	Off thingis to cum to haiff knawing.
	Ane of thaim is astrologi,
695	Quhar-throu clerkys that ar witty	694
	May knaw conjunctiones of planetis,
	And quhethir that thar cours thaim settis
	In soft segis or in angry,
	And off the hevyn all halyly
700	How that the dispositioun	699
	Suld apon thingis wyrk her doun
	On regiones or on climatis,
	That wyrkys nocht ay-quhar agatis
	Bot sumquhar les and sumquhar mar
705	Eftyr as thar bemys strekyt ar	704
	Othir all evyn or on wry.
	Bot me think it war gud maistri
	Till ony astrolog to say
	'This sall fall her and on this day.'
710	For thoucht a man his lyff haly	709
	Studyit sua in astrology
	That on sternys his hewid he brak,
	The wys man sayis he suld nocht mak
	All his lyff certane dayis thre,
715	And yeit suld he ay doute quhill he	714
	Saw how that it come till ending.
	Than is that na certane demyng.
	Or gyff thai men that will study
	In the craft off astrology
720	Knaw all mennys nacioun	719
	And knew the constellacioun
	That kyndlik maneris gyfis thaim till
	For till inclyne to gud or ill,
	How that thai throu science of clergi
725	Or throu slycht off astrology	724
	Couth tell quhatkyn perell apperis
	To thaim that haldys kyndlik maneris,
	I trow that thai suld faile to say
	The thingis that thaim happyn may.
730	For quhethir-sa men inclynyt be	729
	To vertu or to mavyte,
	He may rychtg weill refreynye his will
	Othir throu nurtur or thru skill
	And to the contrar turne him all.
735	And men has mony tyme sene fall	734
	That men kyndly till ivill gevyn
	Throu thar gret wit away has drevyn
	Thar ill and worthin off gret renoun
	Magre the constellacioun,
740	As Arestotill, giff as men redis	739
	He had folowyt his kyndly dedis,
	He had bene fals and covatous
	Bot his wyt maid him vertuous.
	And sen men may on this kyn wys
745	Wyrk agayne that cours that is 	744
	Principaill caus off thar demyng
	Me think thar dome na certane thing.
	Nygromancy the tother is
	That kennys men on syndry wys
750	Throu stalwart conjuracionys	749
	And throu exorcizacionys
	To ger spyritis to thaim apper
	And giff answeris on ser maner,
	As quhilum did the Phitones
755	That quhen Saul abaysyt wes	754
	Off the Felystynys mycht,
	Raysyt throu hyr mekill slycht
	Samuelis spyrite als tite,
	Or in his sted the ivill spyrite
760	That gaiff rycht graith answer hyr to,	759
	Bot off hyr selff rycht nocht wyst scho.
	And man is into dreding ay
	Off thingis that he has herd say,
	Namly off thingis to cum, quhill he
765	Knaw off the end the certante.	764
	And sen thai ar in sic wenyng
	Foroutyne certante off witting,
	Me think quha sayis he knawis thingis
	To cum he makys gret gabingis.
770	Bot quhether scho that tauld the king	769
	How his purpos suld tak ending
	Wenyt or wist it witterly,
	It fell efter halyly
	As scho said, for syne king wes he
775	And off full mekill renommé	774.

Book 5

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