The Wife of Bath's Prologue and Tale Contents
Part 15: l.711-771
711: But now to purpos, why I tolde thee
712: That I was beten for a book, pardee!
713: Upon a nyght jankyn, that was oure sire,
714: Redde on his book, as he sat by the fire,
715: Of eva first, that for hir wikkednesse
716: Was al mankynde broght to wrecchednesse,
717: For which that jhesu crist hymself was slayn,
718: That boghte us with his herte blood agayn.
719: Lo, heere expres of womman may ye fynde,
720: That womman was the los of al mankynde.
721: The redde he me how sampson loste his heres:
722: Slepynge, his lemman kitte it with hir sheres;
723: Thurgh which treson loste he bothe his yen.
724: Tho redde he me, if that I shal nat lyen,
725: Of hercules and of his dianyre,
726: That caused hym to sette hymself afyre.
727: No thyng forgat he the care and the wo
728: That socrates hadde with his wyves two;
729: How xantippa caste pisse upon his heed.
730: This sely man sat stille as he were deed;
731: He wiped his heed, namoore dorste he seyn,
732: But -- er that thonder stynte, comth a reyn! --
733: Of phasipha, that was the queen of crete,
734: For shrewednesse, hym thoughte the tale swete;
735: Fy! spek namoore -- it is a grisly thyng --
736: Of hire horrible lust and hir likyng.
737: Of clitermystra, for hire lecherye,
738: That falsly made hire housbonde for to dye,
739: He redde it with ful good devocioun.
740: He tolde me eek for what occasioun
741: Amphiorax at thebes loste his lyf.
742: Myn housbonde hadde a legende of his wyf,
743: Eriphilem, that for an ouche of gold
744: Hath prively unto the grekes told
745: Wher that hir housbonde hidde hym in a place,
746: For which he hadde at thebes sory grace.
747: Of lyvia tolde he me, and of lucye:
748: They bothe made hir housbondes for to dye;
749: That oon for love, that oother was for hate.
750: Lyvia hir housbonde, on an even late,
751: Empoysoned hath, for that she was his fo;
752: Lucia, likerous, loved hire housbonde so
753: That, for he sholde alwey upon hire thynke,
754: She yaf hym swich a manere love-drynke
755: That he was deed er it were by the morwe;
756: And thus algates housbondes han sorwe.
757: Thanne tolde he me how oon latumyus
758: Compleyned unto his felawe arrius
759: That in his gardyn growed swich a tree
760: On which he seyde how that his wyves thre
761: Hanged hemself for herte despitus.
762: -- O leeve brother, -- quod this arrius,
763: -- Yif me a plante of thilke blissed tree,
764: And in my gardyn planted shal it bee. --
765: Of latter date, of wyves hath he red
766: That somme han slayn hir housbondes in hir bed,
767: And lete hir lecchour dighte hire al the nyght,
768: Whan that the corps lay in the floor upright.
769: And somme han dryve nayles in hir brayn,
770: Whil that they slepte, and thus they had hem slayn.
771: Somme han hem yeve poysoun in hire drynke.
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