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King went out and saw that the cloud moved, and that direct. And on the third day he heard a voice which it behoved him to go, and he dispeeded himself from said thus, Command King Don Rodrigo that he go to a the Abbot, and they commended themselves each to the fountain which is below his hermitage, and he shall other in his prayers. And the Abbot saw plainly how find there a smooth stone; and bid him lift it up, and that cloud guided him, and how there was no other in under it he shall find three liule serpents, the one the sky, and he marvelled greatly, and said, Certes this having two heads. And bid him take that which hath is some holy man, and he gave thanks to God. And the two heads, and carry it away, and place it in a jar, and King went on that evening till he came to a church nurse it secretly, so that no person in the world shall which was solitary and remote from peopled places : know thereof, save only he and thou; and let him keep and there the cloud stopt, and he abode there that it will it wax so great that it hath made three turns night. And the King went into the church, and found within the jar, and puts its head out; and when it is in it a lamp burning, and it rejoiced him much, for by of that greatness, then let him take it out, and lay it in the light of it he said his hours as well before he should a tomb which is there, and lie down himself with it, sleep as after. And on the morrow when he had made naked; and close the tomb well, that the serpent may his prayer, he went out of the church and beheld the not be able to go out; and in this manner God is cloud, and saw that it moved: and lie went after it, pleased that King Don Rodrigo should do penance. and after two days journey he came to a place which where it is, or what it is called, is not said, save that Ch. 254.–Of the Penance which was appointed King it is the place of his burial, for such it is. And there
Don Rodrigo. the cloud stopt and proceeded no farther; and it rested without the town over an ancient hermitage. And the « The Elder when he heard the voice was greatly elder of that place incontinently knew by the Holy amazed at so rigorous a penance as this, and yave Spirit how King Don Rodrigo was come there ; but he many thanks to God, and lie went to King Don Rodrigo, knew not his name, neither who he was; and he asked and told him the manner how he had heard the voice; him if he meant to lead his life there, and he answered and the King was full joyful and content and pleased that it was to be as God should please. And the Elder therewith, and gave many thanks to our Lord, for that said to him, Friend, I am the Elder of this place, for he should now complete lis penance and save his soul. all the others, when they knew that King Don Rodrigo And therewith in great joy, and shedding many tears and his chivalry were slain and vanquished, fled from for pleasure, he went to the fountain as he had been hence for fear of the Moors, and of the trajtor Count directed, and found the smooth stone. And when he Don Julian, and they all went to the mountains 10 had lifted it up, he found the three serpents according escape. And I remained, puttiog my trust in our Lord as the Elder had said, and he took that which had two God, and in his holy hands : for that I would rather heads, and he took it and put it in a great jar, such as abide th: which may befall and take my adventure would be a large wine vessel, and nurst it there will it here, than utterly forsake our mother holy church ; was of such bigness as the voice had said. And when while I am able I will remain here and not forsake it, King Don Rodrigo saw that it was of this bigness he but rather receive my death. And therefore I say, that confessed to the Elder, weeping full bitterly, demanding if you are to abide here you must provide yourself of favour of God that he would give him grace and that wbereof you have need, And the King said, Friend strength with patience to fulfil that penance without of God, concerning my tarriance I cannot certify you; any temptation or trouble of soul; to the end that, the though surely think that I shall abide ; and if for the penance being completed, it might please our Lord God the service of God you will be pleased to send me every to receive his soul into his glory. And before the fifth day that I remain a loaf of pannick and water, I shall day after the serpent was thus big, the king and the be contented therewith. And the Elder promised this, Eller went to the tomb, and they cleansed it well and departed forth with and went to his home, and sent within; and the king placed himself in it baked as he him a loaf of pannick and water. And the cloud re was born, and the serpent with him, and the Elder with mained there three days over that hermitage, and when a great lever laid the stone upon the top. And the King the three days were at an end, it was seen no more. besought the Elder that he would pray to our Lord to And the King, when he could no longer see it, un- give him grace that he might patiently endure that derstood that there he must perform his penance, and penance, and the Elder promised him, and thus the gave many thanks to God, and was full joyful thereat. King remained in his tomb, and the serpent with him. And on the morrow the Elder came to see him, and | And the Elder consoled him, saying to him many things they communed with each other in such manner, that to the end that he might not be dismayed, neither fall the king confessed to him all the sins which he had into despair, whereby he should lose the service of God. committed during his whole life till that time, all which And all this was so secret that no man knew it, save be called to mind with great contrition, weeping full only the King and the Elder. And when it was daybitterly and groaning for his errors and sins. And the break the Elder went to the church and said mass, with Elder was greatly astonished, and said, That on the many tears and with great devotion beseeching God third day from thence he would appoint him his pe- that he would have mercy and compassion upon King nance. And he went to his church and confessed, and Don Rodrigo, that with true devotion and repentance addrest himself to prayer in such guise that he neither le might complete his penance in this manner, which ate nor drank, nor raised bimself from one place, was for his service. And when he had said mass, he weeping bitterly, and beseeching God that he would went to the place where iking Don Rodrigo lay, and shew him what penance he should appoint the King; asked him how he fared, and the King answered, Well, for after no other manner did he think to appoint it, thanks to God, and better than he deserved, but that as than such as his holy mercy and compassion should yet be was just as when he went in. And the Elder
strengthened him as much as he could, telling him that and understanded, hath no likelihood of any truth, he should call to mind how he had been a sinner, and for what sanctity, what religion, or what pietie, comthat he should give thauks to our Lord God, for that mandeth to kyll a penitent person, and one that seeketh he had visited him in this world, and delivered him comfort of hys aftlicted mind by amendment of life, from many temptations, and had himself appointed for with such horrible torments and straunge punishment? him this penance; the which he should suffer and take Wherefore I woulde rather think it to be spoken myswith patience, for soon he would be in heavenly glory. ticallye, and that the serpent with two heads signifieth And the King said to him, that he well knew how ac his sinful and gylly conscience.» cording to his great sins he merited a stronger penance : but that he gave many thanks to our Lord Jesus, for
Note 72, page 442, col. 2. that he himself had given him this penance, which he
A humble tomb was found. did receive and take with great patience; and he besought the Elder that he would continue to pray our
How Carestes found the grave of King Don Rodrigo at
Viseo in Portugal. Lord God that he would let him fulfil it. And the Elder said to him many good things concerning our «I, Carestes, vassal of King Don Alfonso of Leon, Lord God. And the King lay there three days, during son-in-law of the Knight of God, King Don Pelayo all which time the serpent would not seize on him. when the said King Don Alfouso won Viseo from the And when the third day, after that he had gone into Moors who held it, found a grave in a field, upon the the tomb, was completed, the serpent rose from his which were written in Gothic letters, the words which side, and crept upon his belly and his breast, and began you shall here read. This grave was in front of a little with the one head to eat at liis nature, and with the church, without the town of Viseo, and the superscripother straight toward hes heart. And at this time the tion of the writing was thus:Elder came to the tomb, and asked him how he fared, and he said, Well, thanks to God, for now the serpent of the writing which was upon the grave of King Don had begun to eat. And the Elder asked him at what
Rodrigo. place, and he answered at two, one right against the heart with which he had conceived all the ills that he « Here lies King Don Rodrigo, the last of the Goths. bad done, and the other at his nature, the which had Cursed be the wrath of the traitor Julian, for it was of been the cause of the great destruction of Spain. And long endurance, and cursed be his anger, for it was obthe Elder said that God was with him, and exhorted durate and evil, for he was mad with rage, and stobim that he should be of good courage, for now all his machful with pride, and puffed up with folly, and void persecutions both of the body and of the soul would of loyalty, and unmindful of the laws, and a despiser have an end. And the King ceased not always to de- thereof; cruel in himself, a slayer of his Lord, a demand help of our Lord, and to entreat that of his holy stroyer of his country, as traitor to his countrymen; bitmercy he would be pleased to forgive him. And the ter is his name; and it is a grief and sorrow in the Elder went to his home, and would not seat himself to mouth of him who pronounces it; and it shall always eat, but retired into his chamber, and weeping, prayed be cursed by all that speak of liim.» full devoutly to our Lord that he would give strength to That veracious chronicler Carestes then concludes his the King that he might complete his penance. And the true history in these words: « And by this which I serpent, as he was dying for hunger, and moreover was found written upon this grave, I am of mind that King large, had in one minute eaten the nature, and began Don Rodrigo lies there, and because of the life which to eat at the bowels; nevertheless he did not eat so fast, he led in his penitence, according as ye have heard, but that the King endured in that torment from an which also was in the same tomb written in a book of hour before night till it was past the middle of the day. parchment, I believe without doubt that it is true, and And when the serpent broke through the web of the because of the great penance which he did, that God heart, he staid there and ate no further. And incon was pleased to make it known in such manner as it tinently the King gave up his spirit to our Lord, who past, for those who hereafter shall have to rule and by his holy mercy took him into his glory. And at that govern, to the end that all men may see how soon pride hour when he expired all the bells of the place rang of is abased and humility exalted. This Chronicle is comthemselves as if men had rung them. Then the elder posed in memory of the noble King Don Rodrigo; that knew that the king was dead, and that his soul was God pardon his sins, and that son of the Virgin without sa ved.»
stain, Jesus Christ, bring us to true repentance, who
liveth and reigneth for ever and ever. Amen. Thomas Newton, in his « Notable History of the Sa
Thanks be to God!» racens,» seems to imagine that this story is allegorical. I believe the Archbishop Roderick of Toledo is the « Nowe,» he says, « wheras it is reported, and written, earliest writer who mentioned this discovery. He died that he folowed a starre or a messenger of God, which in 1247. The fact may very possibly have been true, conducted and guided him in his way; it may be so, for there seems to have been no intention of setting up and the same bath also happened to others; but it may a shrine connected with it. The Archbishop's words as well also be understoode of a certaine secrete starre
are as follow:moring and directing his will.
«Quid de Rege Roderico acciderit ignoratur; tamen « And wheras they say he was put by that holy man corona, vestes et insignia et calciamenta auro et lapiinto a cave or hole, and a serpent with him that had dibus adornata, et equus qui Orelia dicebatur, in loco (wo heads, which in two days spice gnawed all the flesh tremulo juxta fluvium sine corpore sunt inventa. Quid of his body from the bones; this, beyng simplie taken autem de corpore fuerit factum penitus ignoratur, nisi
quod modernis temporibus apud Viseum civitatem Portugalliæ inscriptus tumulus invenitur, Hic jacet Rodericus ultimus Rex Gothorum. Maledictus furor impius Juliani quia pertinax, et indignatio, quia dura; animosus indignatione, impetuosus furore, oblitus fidelitatis, immemor religionis, contemptor divinitatis, crudelis in se, homicida in dominum, hostis in domesticos, vastator in patriam, reus in omnes, memoria ejus in omni ore amarescet, et nomen ejus in æternum putrescet.»— Rod, Tol. 1, 3, c. 19.
Hoc jacet in sarcophago Rex ille
Penultimus Gothorum in Hispania,
Ne forte pereat tota Lusitania;
Telo, lam magna affectus fuit insania
Abborreant omnes, nomine et remoto
Nec tantum nostri, sed in orbe toto:
Vociferant, testante Mauro et Gotbo,
Jerusalem Conquistada, 1. 6. ff. 137.
Lope de Vega has made this epitaph, with its accompanying reflections, into two stanzas of Latin rhymes, which occur in the midst of one of his loog poems.
A DRAMATIC POEM.
And melody from every spray
Cheerful on this holiday,
Welcome we the merry May.
During the Dance, Tyler lays down his hammer, and
sits mournfully down before his door.
Why so sad, neighbour?-do not these gay sports,
This revelry of youth, recall the days
When we too mingled in the revelry;
And, lightly tripping in the morris dance,
Welcom'd the merry month ?
We were young;
Nor mark'd the black clouds gathering o'er our noon;
Nor feard the storm of night.
Beshrew me, Tyler, Wat Tyler at work within. A May-pole before the Door. But my heart joys to see the imps so cheerful !
Young, hale, and happy, why should they destroy ALICE, PIERS, ETC.
These blessings by reflection?
You should have rested from
your Who doubts it )
And given a few hours up to merrimentThere's never a man in Essex bears a better.
you are so serious ! TYLER. And shall not these, though young, and hale, and happy,
Serious, my good girl! Look on with sorrow to the future hour?
I may well be so: when I look at thee
It makes me sad! thou art too fair a flower
Even with contempt: they cannot purchase peace, And age comes on to steal away my strength,
Or innocence, or virtue :-sounder sleep And leave me poor and wretched! why should this be? Waits on the weary ploughman's lowly bed, My youth was regular-my labour constant
Than on the downy couch of luxury I married an industrious, virtuous woman;
Lulls the rich slave of pride and indolence. Nor while I toiled and sweated at the anvil,
I never wish for wealth! my arm is strong, Sat she neglectful of her spinning-wheel.
And I can purchase by it a coarse meal, Hob—I have only six groats in the world,
And hunger savours it. And they must soon by law be taken from me.
Young man, thy mind Curse on these taxes-one succeeds another
Has yet to bear the hard lesson of experience. Our ministers-panders of a king's will
Thou art yet young, the blasting breath of want Drain all our wealth away-waste it in revels
llas not yet froze the current of thy blood.
Restrain their wanderings : Nature gives enough
For all; but Man, with arrogant selfishness, What matters me who wears the crown of France ! Proud of his heaps, hoards up superfluous stores, Whether a Richard or a Charles possess it?
Robb'd from his weaker fellows, starves the poor, They reap the glory—they enjoy the spoil
Or gives to pity what he owes to justice!
So I have heard our good friend John Ball preach. Though neither of these royal pests existed.
My father, wherefore was Jolin Ball imprison'd?
I have heard him say that all mankind are brethren, The hard-earu'd wages of our honest toil.
And that like brethren they should love each other ;The Parliament for ever cries, More money,
Was not that doctrine pious ?
High treason, every syllable, my child! Oh! 't is of vast importance! who should pay
The priests cry out on him for heresy,
The nobles all detest him as a rebel;
[Exit Alice. All that I have! to massacre the Frenchmen,
Piers, I would speak to thee Murder as enemies men I never saw!
Even with a father's love! you are much with me, Did not the state compel me?
And I believe do court my conversation; (Tax-gatherers pass by.) There they go,
Thou couldst not chuse thee forth a truer friend; Privileg'd r---s!
I would faiu see thee happy, but I fear [Piers and Alice advance to him. Thy very virtues will destroy thy peace.
My daughter-she is young-not yet fifteenDid we not dance it well 10-day, my father?
Piers, thou art generous, and thy youthful heart You know I always lov'd these village sports,
Warm with affection ; this close intimacy Even from my infancy, and yet methioks
Will ere long grow to love. I never tript along the mead so vuily.
Suppose it so;
Were that an evil, Walter ? She is mild, Is it not simple?-you are sad, my father!
And cheerful, and industrious-pow mcıbioks
She is below the age-not yet fifteen.
COLLECTOR. You would evade the tax.
[Alice and her Mother enter the Shop. The Tax.
gatherers go to her. One of them lays hold of
COLLECTOR. You say
she's under age. [ALICE screams again. TYLER knocks out the Tax-gatherer's Brains.
His Companions fly.
A just revenge.
Most just indeed; but in the eye of the law
[Piers goes out. (Tyler sits down mournfully.)
It is most true: but tell me, my dear boy,
Thy honest reason Could wish no more: but were it not most wretched To want the coarse food for the frugal meal? And, by the orders of your merciless lord, If you by chance were guilty of being poor, To be turn'd out adrift to the bleak world, Unhous'd, unfriended ?-Piers, I have not been idle, I never ate the bread of indolenceCould Alice be more thrifty than her mother? Yet but with one child, and that one, how good Thou knowest, I scarcely can provide the wants Of nature: look at these wolves of the law, They come to drain me of my heard-earn'd wages. I have already paid the heavy tax Laid on the wool that clothes me-on my leather, On all the needful articles of life! And now three groats (and I work'd hard to earn them) The Parliament demands—and I must pay them, Forsooth for liberty to wear my head. -
Three groats a head for all your family.
It would be useless, Alice- 't would but lengthen A wretched life in fear.
( Cry without
Liberty! Liberty! (Enter Mob, Hos Carter, etc.) (Cry) Liberty! liberty!-No Poll-tax!-No War!
angerThe mighty multitude shall trample down "The handful that oppress them.
Have ye heard So soon then of my murder ?
Of your vengeance. Piers ran throughout the village-told the news Cried out, To arms !---arm, arm for Liberty! For Liberty and Justice!
My good friends, Heed well your danger, or be resolute; Learn to laugh menaces and force lo scorn,
Why is this money gathered ?--'t is a hard tax
The state wants money. War is expensive it is a glorious war, A war of honour, and must be supported.Three groats a head. so ribas