Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

SIŽEN že sege and že assaut watz sesed at Troye,
Že bor3 brittened and brent to bronde3 and askez,
Že tulk žat že trammes of tresoun žer wro3t
Watz tried for his tricherie, že trewest on erže:
Hit watz Ennias že athel, and his highe kynde,
Žat sižen depreced prouinces, and patrounes bicome
Welne3e of al že wele in že west iles.
Fro riche Romulus to Rome ricchis hym swyže,
With gret bobbaunce žat bur3e he biges vpon fyrst,
And neuenes hit his aune nome, as hit now hat;
Tirius to Tuskan and teldes bigynnes,
Langaberde in Lumbardie lyftes vp homes,
And fer ouer že French flod Felix Brutus
On mony bonkkes ful brode Bretayn he settez wyth wynne,
Where werre and wrake and wonder
Bi syžez hatz wont žerinne,
And oft bože blysse and blunder
Ful skete hatz skyfted synne.

Ande quen žis Bretayn watz bigged bi žis burn rych,
Bolde bredden žerinne, baret žat lofden,
In mony turned tyme tene žat wro3ten.
Mo ferlyes on žis folde han fallen here oft
Žen in any ožer žat I wot, syn žat ilk tyme.
Bot of alle žat here bult, of Bretaygne kynges,
Ay watz Arthur že hendest, as I haf herde telle.
1Forži an aunter in erde I attle to schawe,
Žat a selly in si3t summe men hit holden,
And an outtrage awenture of Arthurez wonderez.
If 3e wyl lysten žis laye bot on littel quile,
I schal telle hit as-tit, as I in toun herde, with tonge,
As hit is stad and stoken
In stori stif and stronge,
With lel letteres loken,
In londe so hatz ben longe.

Žis kyng lay at Camylot vpon Krystmasse
With mony luflych lorde, ledez of že best,
Rekenly of že Rounde Table alle žo rich brežer,
With rych reuel ory3t and rechles meržes.
Žer tournayed tulkes by tymez ful mony,
Justed ful jolilé žise gentyle kni3tes,
Syžen kayred to že court caroles to make.
For žer že fest watz ilyche ful fiften dayes,
With alle že mete and že mirže žat men couže avyse;
Such glaum ande gle glorious to here,
Dere dyn vpon day, daunsyng on ny3tes,
Al watz hap vpon he3e in hallez and chambrez
With lordez and ladies, as leuest him žo3t.
With all že wele of že worlde žay woned žer samen,
Že most kyd kny3tez vnder Krystes seluen,
And že louelokkest ladies žat euer lif haden,
And he že comlokest kyng žat že court haldes;
For al watz žis fayre folk in her first age, on sille,
Že hapnest vnder heuen,
Kyng hy3est mon of wylle;
Hit were now gret nye to neuen
So hardy a here on hille.

Wyle Nw 3er watz so 3ep žat hit watz nwe cummen,
Žat day doubble on že dece watz že douth serued.
Fro že kyng watz cummen with kny3tes into že halle,
Že chauntré of že chapel cheued to an ende,
Loude crye watz žer kest of clerkez and ožer,
1Nowel nayted onewe, neuened ful ofte;
And syžen riche forth runnen to reche hondeselle,
3e3ed 3eres-3iftes on hi3, 3elde hem bi hond,
Debated busyly aboute žo giftes;
Ladies la3ed ful loude, žo3 žay lost haden,
And he žat wan watz not wrothe, žat may 3e wel trawe.
Alle žis mirže žay maden to že mete tyme;
When žay had waschen woržyly žay wenten to sete,
Že best burne ay abof, as hit best semed,
Whene Guenore, ful gay, grayžed in že myddes,
Dressed on že dere des, dubbed al aboute,
Smal sendal bisides, a selure hir ouer
Of tryed tolouse, and tars tapites innoghe,
Žat were enbrawded and beten wyth že best gemmes
Žat my3t be preued of prys wyth penyes to bye, in daye.
Že comlokest to discrye
Žer glent with y3en gray,
A semloker žat euer he sy3e
Soth mo3t no mon say.

Bot Arthure wolde not ete til al were serued,
He watz so joly of his joyfnes, and sumquat childgered:
His lif liked hym ly3t, he louied že lasse
Aužer to longe lye or to longe sitte,
So bisied him his 3onge blod and his brayn wylde.
And also an ožer maner meued him eke
Žat he žur3 nobelay had nomen, he wolde neuer ete
Vpon such a dere day er hym deuised were
Of sum auenturus žyng an vncouže tale,
Of sum mayn meruayle, žat he my3t trawe,
Of alderes, of armes, of ožer auenturus,
Ožer sum segg hym biso3t of sum siker kny3t
To joyne wyth hym in iustyng, in jopardé to lay,
Lede, lif for lyf, leue vchon ožer,
As fortune wolde fulsun hom, že fayrer to haue.
Žis watz že kynges countenaunce where he in court were,
At vch farand fest among his fre meny1 in halle.
Žerfore of face so fere
He sti3tlez stif in stalle,
Ful 3ep in žat Nw 3ere
Much mirthe he mas withalle.

Thus žer stondes in stale že stif kyng hisseluen,
Talkkande bifore že hy3e table of trifles ful hende.
There gode Gawan watz grayžed Gwenore bisyde,
And Agrauayn a la dure mayn on žat ožer syde sittes,
Bože že kynges sistersunes and ful siker kni3tes;
Bischop Bawdewyn abof biginez že table,
And Ywan, Vryn son, ette with hymseluen.
Žise were di3t on že des and derworžly serued,
And sižen mony siker segge at že sidbordez.
Žen že first cors come with crakkyng of trumpes,
Wyth mony baner ful bry3t žat žerbi henged;
Nwe nakryn noyse with že noble pipes,
Wylde werbles and wy3t wakned lote,
Žat mony hert ful hi3e hef at her towches.
Dayntés dryuen žerwyth of ful dere metes,
Foysoun of že fresche, and on so fele disches
Žat pine to fynde že place že peple biforne
For to sette že sylueren žat sere sewes halden on clothe.
Iche lede as he loued hymselue
Žer laght withouten lože;
Ay two had disches twelue,
Good ber and bry3t wyn bože.

Now wyl I of hor seruise say yow no more,
For vch wy3e may wel wit no wont žat žer were.
An ožer noyse ful newe ne3ed biliue,
Žat že lude my3t haf leue liflode to cach;
For vneže watz že noyce not a whyle sesed,
And že fyrst cource in že court kyndely serued,
Žer hales in at že halle dor an aghlich mayster,
On že most on že molde on mesure hyghe;
Fro že swyre to že swange so sware and so žik,
And his lyndes and his lymes so longe and so grete,
Half etayn in erde I hope žat he were,
Bot mon most I algate mynn hym to bene,
And žat že myriest in his muckel žat my3t ride;
For of bak and of brest al were his bodi sturne,
Both his wombe and his wast were worthily smale,
And alle his fetures fol3ande, in forme žat he hade, ful clene;
For wonder of his hwe men hade,
Set in his semblaunt sene;
He ferde as freke were fade,
And oueral enker-grene.

Ande al grayžed in grene žis gome and his wedes:
A strayte cote ful stre3t, žat stek on his sides,
A meré mantile abof, mensked withinne
With pelure pured apert, že pane ful clene
With blyže blaunner ful bry3t, and his hod bože,
Žat watz la3t fro his lokkez and layde on his schulderes;
Heme wel-haled hose of žat same,
Žat spenet on his sparlyr, and clene spures vnder
Of bry3t golde, vpon silk bordes barred ful ryche,
And scholes vnder schankes žere že schalk rides;
And alle his vesture uerayly watz clene verdure,
Bože že barres of his belt and ožer blyže stones,
Žat were richely rayled in his aray clene
Aboutte hymself and his sadel, vpon silk werkez.
Žat were to tor for to telle of tryfles že halue
Žat were enbrauded abof, wyth bryddes and fly3es,
With gay gaudi of grene, že golde ay inmyddes.
Že pendauntes of his payttrure, že proude cropure,
His molaynes, and alle že metail anamayld was ženne,
Že steropes žat he stod on stayned of že same,
And his arsounz al after and his ažel skyrtes,
Žat euer glemered and glent al of grene stones;
Že fole žat he ferkkes on fyn of žat ilke, sertayn,
A grene hors gret and žikke,
A stede ful stif to strayne,
In brawden brydel quik -- 1
To že gome he watz ful gayn.

Wel gay watz žis gome gered in grene,
And že here of his hed of his hors swete.
Fayre fannand fax vmbefoldes his schulderes;
A much berd as a busk ouer his brest henges,
Žat wyth his hi3lich here žat of his hed reches
Watz euesed al vmbetorne abof his elbowes,
Žat half his armes žer-vnder were halched in že wyse
Of a kyngez capados žat closes his swyre;
Že mane of žat mayn hors much to hit lyke,
Wel cresped and cemmed, wyth knottes ful mony
Folden in wyth fildore aboute že fayre grene,
Ay a herle of že here, an ožer of golde;
Že tayl and his toppyng twynnen of a sute,
And bounden bože wyth a bande of a bry3t grene,
Dubbed wyth ful dere stonez, as že dok lasted,
Syžen žrawen wyth a žwong a žwarle knot alofte,
Žer mony bellez ful bry3t of brende golde rungen.
Such a fole vpon folde, ne freke žat hym rydes,
Watz neuer sene in žat sale wyth sy3t er žat tyme, with y3e.
He loked as layt so ly3t,
So sayd al žat hym sy3e;
Hit semed as no mon my3t
Vnder his dynttez dry3e. Whežer hade he no helme ne hawbergh naužer,
Ne no pysan ne no plate žat pented to armes,
Ne no schafte ne no schelde to schwue ne to smyte,
Bot in his on honde he hade a holyn bobbe,
Žat is grattest in grene when greuez ar bare,
And an ax in his ožer, a hoge and vnmete,
A spetos sparže to expoun in spelle, quoso my3t.
Že lenkže of an eln3erde že large hede hade,
Že grayn al of grene stele and of golde hewen,
Že bit burnyst bry3t, with a brod egge
As wel schapen to schere as scharp rasores,
Že stele of a stif staf že sturne hit bi grypte,

Žat watz wounden wyth yrn to že wandez ende,
And al bigrauen with grene in gracios werkes;
A lace lapped aboute, žat louked at že hede,
And so after že halme halched ful ofte,
Wyth tryed tasselez žerto tacched innoghe
On botounz of že bry3t grene brayden ful ryche.
Žis hažel heldez hym in and že halle entres,
Driuande to že he3e dece, dut he no wože,
Haylsed he neuer one, bot he3e he ouer loked.
Že fyrst word žat he warp, 'Wher is', he sayd,
'Že gouernour of žis gyng? Gladly I wolde
Se žat segg in sy3t, and with hymself speke raysoun.'
To kny3tez he kest his y3e,
And reled hym vp and doun;
He stemmed, and con studie
Quo walt žer most renoun.

Ther watz lokyng on lenže že lude to beholde,
For vch mon had meruayle quat hit mene my3t
Žat a hažel and a horse my3t such a hwe lach,
As growe grene as že gres and grener hit semed,
Žen grene aumayl on golde glowande bry3ter.
Al studied žat žer stod, and stalked hym nerre
Wyth al že wonder of že worlde what he worch schulde.
For fele sellyez had žay sen, bot such neuer are;
Forži for fantoum and fayry3e že folk žere hit demed.
Žerfore to answare watz ar3e mony ažel freke,
And al stouned at his steuen and stonstil seten
In a swoghe sylence žur3 že sale riche;
As al were slypped vpon slepe so slaked hor lotez in hy3e --
I deme hit not al for doute,
Bot sum for cortaysye --
Bot let hym žat al schulde loute
Cast vnto žat wy3e.

Ženn Aržour bifore že hi3 dece žat auenture byholdez,
And rekenly hym reuerenced, for rad was he neuer,
And sayde, 'Wy3e, welcum iwys to žis place,

Že hede of žis ostel Arthour I hat;
Li3t luflych adoun and lenge, I že praye,
And quat-so žy wylle is we schal wyt after.'
'Nay, as help me,' quož že hažel, 'he žat on hy3e syttes,
To wone any quyle in žis won, hit watz not myn ernde;
Bot for že los of že, lede, is lyft vp so hy3e,
And žy bur3 and žy burnes best ar holden,
Stifest vnder stel-gere on stedes to ryde,
Že wy3test and že woržyest of že worldes kynde,
Preue for to play wyth in ožer pure laykez,
And here is kydde cortaysye, as I haf herd carp,
And žat hatz wayned me hider, iwyis, at žis
3e may be seker bi žis braunch žat I bere here
Žat I passe as in pes, and no ply3t seche;
For had I founded in fere in fe3tyng wyse,
I haue a hauberghe at home and a helme bože,
A schelde and a scharp spere, schinande bry3t,
Ande ožer weppenes to welde, I wene wel, als;
Bot for I wolde no were, my wedez ar softer.
Bot if žou be so bold as alle burnez tellen,
Žou wyl grant me godly že gomen žat I ask bi ry3t.'
Arthour con onsware,
And sayd, 'Sir cortays kny3t,
If žou craue batayl bare,
Here faylez žou not to fy3t.'

'Nay, frayst I no fy3t, in fayth I že telle,
Hit arn aboute on žis bench bot berdlez chylder.
If I were hasped in armes on a he3e stede,
Here is no mon me to mach, for my3tez so wayke.
Foržy I craue in žis court a Crystemas gomen,
For hit is 3ol and Nwe 3er, and here ar 3ep mony:
If any so hardy in žis hous holdez hymseluen,
Be so bolde in his blod, brayn in hys hede,
Žat dar stifly strike a strok for an ožer,
I schal gif hym of my gyft žys giserne ryche,
Žis ax, žat is heué innogh, to hondele as hym lykes,

And I schal bide že fyrst bur as bare as I sitte.
If any freke be so felle to fonde žat I telle,
Lepe ly3tly me to, and lach žis weppen,
I quit-clayme hit for euer, kepe hit as his auen,
And I schal stonde hym a strok, stif on žis flet,
Ellez žou wyl di3t me že dom to dele hym an ožer barlay,
And 3et gif hym respite,
A twelmonyth and a day;
Now hy3e, and let se tite
Dar any herinne o3t say.'

If he hem stowned vpon fyrst, stiller were žanne
Alle že heredmen in halle, že hy3 and že lo3e.
Že renk on his rouncé hym ruched in his sadel,
And runischly his rede y3en he reled aboute,
Bende his bresed bro3ez, blycande grene,
Wayued his berde for to wayte quo-so wolde ryse.
When non wolde kepe hym with carp he co3ed ful hy3e,
Ande rimed hym ful richly, and ry3t hym to speke:
'What, is žis Arthures hous,' quož že hažel ženne,
'Žat al že rous rennes of žur3 ryalmes so mony?
Where is now your sourquydrye and your conquestes,
Your gryndellayk and your greme, and your grete wordes?
Now is že reuel and že renoun of že Rounde Table
Ouerwalt wyth a worde of on wy3es speche,
For al dares for drede withoute dynt schewed!'
Wyth žis he la3es so loude žat že lorde greued;
Že blod schot for scham into his schyre face and lere;
He wex as wroth as wynde,
So did alle žat žer were.
Že kyng as kene bi kynde
Žen stod žat stif mon nere,

Ande sayde, 'Hažel, by heuen, žyn askyng is nys,
And as žou foly hatz frayst, fynde že behoues.
I know no gome žat is gast of žy grete wordes;
Gif me now žy geserne, vpon Godez halue,
And I schal bayžen žy bone žat žou boden habbes.'

Ly3tly lepez he hym to, and la3t at his honde.
Žen feersly žat ožer freke vpon fote ly3tis.
Now hatz Arthure his axe, and že halme grypez,
And sturnely sturez hit aboute, žat stryke wyth hit žo3t.
Že stif mon hym bifore stod vpon hy3t,
Herre žen ani in že hous by že hede and more.
Wyth sturne schere žer he stod he stroked his berde,
And wyth a countenaunce dry3e he dro3 doun his cote,
No more mate ne dismayd for hys mayn dintez
Žen any burne vpon bench hade bro3t hym to
drynk of wyne.
Gawan, žat sate bi že quene,
To že kyng he can enclyne:
'I beseche now with sa3ez sene
Žis melly mot be myne.

'Wolde 3e, woržilych lorde,' quož Wawan to že kyng,
'Bid me bo3e fro žis benche, and stonde by yow žere,
Žat I wythoute vylanye my3t voyde žis table,
And žat my legge lady lyked not ille,
I wolde com to your counseyl bifore your cort ryche.
For me žink hit not semly, as hit is sož knawen,
Žer such an askyng is heuened so hy3e in your sale,
Ža3 3e 3ourself be talenttyf, to take hit to yourseluen,
Whil mony so bolde yow aboute vpon bench sytten,
Žat vnder heuen I hope non ha3erer of wylle,
Ne better bodyes on bent žer baret is rered.
I am že wakkest, I wot, and of wyt feblest,
And lest lur of my lyf, quo laytes že sože --
Bot for as much as 3e ar myn em I am only to prayse,
No bounté bot your blod I in my bodé knowe;
And syžen žis note is so nys žat no3t hit yow falles,
And I haue frayned hit at yow fyrst, foldez hit to me;
And if I carp not comlyly, let alle žis cort rych bout blame.'
Ryche togeder con roun,
And syžen žay redden alle same
To ryd že kyng wyth croun,
And gif Gawan že game.

Žen comaunded že kyng že kny3t for to ryse;
And he ful radly vpros, and ruchched hym fayre,
Kneled doun bifore že kyng, and cachez žat weppen;
And he luflyly hit hym laft, and lyfte vp his honde,
And gef hym Goddez blessyng, and gladly hym biddes
Žat his hert and his honde schulde hardi be bože.
'Kepe že cosyn,' quož že kyng, 'žat žou on kyrf sette,
And if žou rede3 hym ry3t, redly I trowe
Žat žou schal byden že bur žat he schal bede after.'
Gawan gotz to že gome with giserne in honde,
And he baldly hym bydez, he bayst neuer že helder.
Žen carppez to Sir Gawan že kny3t in že grene,
'Refourme we oure forwardes, er we fyrre passe.
Fyrst I eže že, hažel, how žat žou hattes
Žat žou me telle truly, as I tryst may.'
'In god fayth,' quož že goode kny3t, 'Gawan I hatte,
Žat bede že žis buffet, quat-so bifallez after,
And at žis tyme twelmonyth take at že an ožer
Wyth what weppen so žou wylt, and wyth no wy3 ellez on lyue.'
Žat ožer onswarez agayn,
Sir Gawan, so mot I žryue
As I am ferly fayn
Žis dint žat žou schal dryue.

'Bigog,' quož že grene kny3t, 'Sir Gawan, me lykes
Žat I schal fange at žy fust žat I haf frayst here.
And žou hatz redily rehersed, bi resoun ful trwe,
Clanly al že couenaunt žat I že kynge asked,
Saf žat žou schal siker me, segge, bi ži trawže,
Žat žou schal seche me žiself, where-so žou hopes
I may be funde vpon folde, and foch že such wages
As žou deles me to-day bifore žis douže ryche.'
'Where schulde I wale že,' quož Gauan, 'where is žy place?
I wot neuer where žou wonyes, bi hym žat me wro3t,
Ne I know not že, kny3t, by cort ne ži name.
Bot teche me truly žerto, and telle me how žou hattes,
And I schal ware alle my wyt to wynne me žeder,

And žat I swere že for sože, and by my seker trawež.'
'Žat is innogh in Nwe 3er, hit nedes no more',
Quož že gome in že grene to Gawan že hende;
'3if I že telle trwly, quen I že tape haue
And žou me smožely hatz smyten, smartly I že teche
Of my hous and my home and myn owen nome,
Žen may žou frayst my fare and forwardez holde;
And if I spende no speche, ženne spedez žou že better,
For žou may leng in žy londe and layt no fyrre -- bot slokes!
Ta now žy grymme tole to že,
And let se how žou cnokez.'
'Gladly, sir, for sože',
Quož Gawan; his ax he strokes.
Že grene kny3t vpon grounde grayžely hym dresses,
A littel lut with že hede, že lere he discouerez,
His longe louelych lokkez he layd ouer his croun,
Let že naked nec to že note schewe.
Gauan gripped to his ax, and gederes hit on hy3t,
Že kay fot on že folde he before sette,
Let him doun ly3tly ly3t on že naked,
Žat že scharp of že schalk schyndered že bones,
And schrank žur3 že schyire grece, and schade hit in twynne,
Žat že bit of že broun stel bot on že grounde.
Že fayre hede fro že halce hit to že erže,
Žat fele hit foyned wyth her fete, žere hit forth roled;
Že blod brayd fro že body, žat blykked on že grene;
And nawžer faltered ne fel že freke neuer že helder,
Bot styžly he start forth vpon styf schonkes,
And runyschly he ra3t out, žere as renkkez
La3t to his lufly hed, and lyft hit vp sone;
And syžen bo3ez to his blonk, že brydel he cachchez,
Steppez into stelbawe and strydez alofte,
And his hede by že here in his honde haldez;
And as sadly že segge hym in his sadel sette
As non vnhap had hym ayled, ža3 hedlez he were in stedde.
He brayde his bulk aboute,

Žat vgly bodi žat bledde;
Moni on of hym had doute,
Bi žat his resounz were redde.