School of Music
University of Nebraska--Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0100
(phone: [402] 472-2507; Internet: plefferts1@unl.edu)

Data entry: Peter M. Lefferts
Checked by: Peter Slemon
Approved by: Peter M. Lefferts

Author: Hawes, Stephen
Title: The Pastime of Pleasure (excerpt)
Source: Stephen Hawes, The Pastime of Pleasure (London: Wynkyn de Worde, 1517) [STC 12949], ff. Evir-Eviiir; reprint in The Works of Stephen Hawes: Facsimile Reproductions with an Introduction by Frank J. Spang (Delmar, NY: Scholar's Facsimiles and Reprints, 1975), 59-63.

[-f.Evir-] I thought full longe tyll I hadde a syght
Of la bell pucell/ the most fayre lady
My mynde vpon her was/ both daye and nyght
The feruent loue/ so perst me inwardly
Wherfore I went/ anone ryght shortly
Unto the toure/ swete and melodyons
Of dame musyke/ so gaye and gloryous

Capitulum xvi.

WHan splendent Phebus/ in his myddaye spere
Was hyght in gemyne/ in the fresshe season
Of lusty maye/ with golden beames clere
And derke Dyane/ made declynacyon
Whan Flora florysshed in this nacyon
I called vnto mynde/ ryght inwardly
The reporte of fame/ somoche ententyfly

Of la bell pucell/ in the toure musycall
And ryght anone/ vnto the toure I went
Where I sawe a temple/ made of crystall
In whiche musyke/ the lady excellent
Played on base organs expedyent
Accordynge well/ vnto dyopason
Dyapenthe/ and eke dyetesseron

In this temple was/ grete solempnyte
And of moche people/ there was grete prease
I loked aboute/ whether I coude se
[-f.Eviv-] La bell pucell/ my langour to cease
I coude not se her/ my payne dyde encrease
Tyll that I spyed her/ aboue/ in a vaut
Whiche to my hert/ dyde make so sore assaut

With her beaute clere/ and swete countenaunce
The stroke of loue/ I coude nothynge resyst
And anone/ without lenger cyrcumstaunce
To her I went/ or that her persone wyste
Her thought I knewe not/ she thought as she lyste
By her I stode/ with hert fore and faynt
And dyde myselfe/ with her soone acquaynt

The comyn wyt/ dyde full lytell regarde
Of dame musyke/ the dulcet armony
The eres herde not/ for the mynde inwarde
Venns had rapte/ and taken feruently
Ymagynacyon/ wrought full pryuely
The fantasy gaue/ perfyte Iugement
Alway to to her/ for to be obedyent

By estymacyon/ moche doubtfully I cast
Wheder I shoulde/ by longe tyme and space
Atteyne her loue/ or elles to loue in wast
My hert sobbed/ and quaked in this cace
I stode by her/ ryght nere in the place
With many other/ fayre ladyes also
But so fayre as she/ I neuer sawe no mo

The feest done/ dame musyke dyde go
She folowed after/ and she wolde not tary
Farewell she sayde/ for I must parte you fro
Alas thought I/ that fortune doth so vary
My sadde body/ my heuy hert dyde cary
I coude not speke/ my hert was nere broken
[-f.Eviir-] But with my heed/ I made her a token

Whan she was gone/ inwardly than wrought
Upon her beaute/ my mynde retentyfe
Her goodly fygure/ I graued in my thought
Excepte her selfe/ all were expulcyfe
My mynde to her/ was so ententyfe
That I folowed her/ into a temple ferre
Replete with Ioye/ as bryght as ony sterre

Where dulcet Flora/ her aromatyke dewe
In the fayre temple/ adowne dyde dystyll
All abrode/ the fayre dropes dyde shewe
Encensynge out/ all the vapours yll
With suche a swetenes/ Flora dyde fulfyll
All the temple/ that my gowne well shewed
The lycoure swete/ of the droppes endewed

And so to a chambre/ full solacyous
Dame musyke wente/ with la bell pucell
All of Iasper/ with stones precyous
The rofe was wrought/ curyously and well
The wyndowes glased/ meruaylously to tell
With clothe of tyssue/ in the rychest maner
The walles were hanged/ hye and cyrculer

There sate dame musyke/ with all her mynstralsy
As taboures/ trumpettes/ with pypes melodyous
Sakbuttes/ organs/ and the recorder swetely
Harpes/ lutes/ and crouddes ryght delycyous
Cymphans/ doussemers/ with clarycymbales gloryous
Rebeckes/ clarycordes/ eche in theyr degre
Dyde sytte aboute/ theyr ladyes mageste

[-f.Eviiv-] Before dame musyke/ I dyde knele adowne
Sayenge to her/ o fayre lady pleasaunt
Your prudence reyneth/ most hye in renowne
For you be euer/ ryght concordant
With perfyte reason/ whiche is not varyaunt
I beseche your grace/ with all my dylygence
To instructe me/ in your noble scyence

It is she sayde/ ryght gretely prouffytable
For musyke doth sette/ in all vnyte
The dyscorde thynges/ whiche are varyable
And deuoydeth myschefe/ and grete inyquyte
Where lacketh musyke/ there is no pleynte
For musyke is concorde/ and also peace
Nothynge without musyke/ maye well encreace

The .vii. scyences/ in one monacorde
Eche vp on other/ do full well depende
Musyke hath them/ so set in concorde
That all in one/ maye ryght well extende
All perfyte reason/ they do so comprehende
That they are waye/ and perfyte doctryne
To the Ioye aboue/ whiche is celestyne

And yet also/ the perfyte physyke
Whiche appertayneth well to the body
Doth well resemble/ vnto the musyke
Whan the inwarde intrayles/ tourneth contrary
That nature can not/ werke dyrectly
Than doth phesyke/ the partes interyall
In ordre set/ to theyr orygynall

But yet physyke/ can not be lyberall
[-f.Eviiir-] As the .vii. scyence/ by good auctoryte
Whiche ledeth the soule/ the waye in specyall
By good doctryne/ to dame eternyte
Onely of physyke/ it is the propryete
To ayde the body/ in euery sekenes
That is ryght frayle/ and full of bryttylnes

And bycause physyke/ is apendant
Unto the body/ by helpe of medycene
And to the soule/ nothynge apportenaunt
To cause the body/ for to enclyne
In eternall helthe/ so the soule to domyne
For to the body/ the scyence seuen
Doth teche to lede/ the soule to heuen

And musyke selfe it is melodyous
To reioyce the yeres/ and confort the brayne
Sharpynge the wyttes/ with sounde solacyous
Deuoydynge bad thoughtes/ whiche dyde remayne
It gladdeth the herte/ also well certayue
Lengthe the lyfe/ with dulcet armony
As is good recreacyon/ after study

She commaunded her mynstrelles/ ryght anone to play
Mamours the swete/ and the gentyll daunce
With la bell pucell/ that was fayre and gaye
She me recommaunded/ with all pleasaunce
To daunce true mesures/ without varyaunce
O lorde god/ how glad than was I
So for to daunce/ with my swete lady

Return to 16th-Century File List

Return to the TME Home