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The Temple of Glass   By: (1370?-1451?)

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The Temple of Glass by John Lydgate

Printed at Westminster by William Caxton about the year 1477

Cambridge at the University Press 1905

The unique book here reprinted in facsimile came to the Cambridge University Library in a famous volume of tracts described by Mr Blades (Biography and Typography of W. Caxton, 1882, p. 201).

The volume had formed part of the collection of John Moore, Bishop of Ely, which was given to the University by King George the First in 1715.

The first leaf, which is wanting, was probably blank.


I certify that I have printed 250 copies only of this facsimile, that the impressions have been rubbed off the plates and the negatives destroyed.


.The temple of glas.

For thought constreynt & greuous heuynes For pensifhed and higħ distres To bed I went now this other nyght Whan that lucina witħ hir pale light Was Ioyned last witħ phebus in aquarye Amyd decembre, whan of Ianuarye Ther be kalendes of the new yere And derk dyane horned and nothing clere Had her beames vnder a mysty cloude Witħ in my bed for cold I gan me shroude Al desolate for constraynt of my woo The long nyght walowyng to and fro Til at laste er I began take kepe Me dyde oppresse a sodeyn dedly slepe Witħ in the whiche me thougħt I was Rauysshed in spiryte in to a temple of glas I nyste how fer in wildernes That founded was as by liklynes Not vpon stele, but on a craggy roche Lyke yse y froze, and as I did approche Agayn the sonne that shone so clere

As ony Cristal and euer ner and ner As I cam nyghe this grisly dredful place I wex astonyed, the light so in my face Be gan to smyte, so persing euer in one On euery part wher that I gan gone That I ne might no thing as I wolde Aboute me considere and beholde The wonder estres for brightnes of the sonne Til atte last certayn skyes donne Witħ wynde chaced han her cours y went To fore the stremes of titan and y blent So that I mighte witħ in and witħ oute Wherso I wolde beholden me aboute For to reporte the facōn and manere Of aƚƚ this place that was circuler In compas wyse, round by entayle wrought And whan I had longe gone and sought I found a wiket and entred in as fast In to the temple and myn eyen cast On euery syde now lowe eft alofte And right anon as I gan walken softe Yf I the sotħ a right reporte shal I sawe depeynted vpon a wal

From este to weste many a fair ymage Of sondry louers lyke as they were of age Y sette in ordre after they were trewe Witħ liuely colours wonder fresh of hue And as me thought I sawe som sitte & som stāde And som̄e knelyng witħ billes in their hande And som̄e witħ compleynt woful & pietous Witħ doleful chere to putten to venus So as she sat fleetyng in the see Vpon her woo forto haue pitee And first of alle I saugħ there of cartage Dido the quene so goodly of visage That gan compleyne hir auenture and cas How she deceyued was of Eneas For al his hestes and his othes sworn And said alas that euer she was born Whan she sawe that ded she must be And next I sawe the compleynt of Medee How that she falsed was of Iason And nygħ by venus sawe I sitte atheon And al the maner how the boor hym slougħ For whom she wepte and had pyne ynougħ Ther saw I also how that penolope

For she so longe her lord ne mighte see Was of colour bothe pale and grene And after next was the fresh quene I mene alcest the noble trewe wyf And for admete hou she lost her lif And for her troutħ yf I shal not lye How she was torned in to a daysye Ther was Grisildes Innocence And al her mekenes and pacience There was eke Isode & many other moo And al the torment and the cruel woo That she had for tristram al her lyue And how that Tisbe her hert dyde ryue Witħ thilk swerd of sir Piramus And al the maner hou that Theseus The mynotaure slow amyd the hous That was forwrynked... Continue reading book >>

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