The Devonshire Manuscript/for loue ys yet the moste stormy lyfe

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The Devonshire Manuscript
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Wo worthe the fayre gemme vertulesse Also wyckyd tonges byn so prest
The Devonshire Manuscript facsimile 91v

f. [91v]

1    for loue ys yet the moste stormy lyfe
2    ryght off hymself / that euer was begonne
3    for euer some mystrust / or nyce stryfe
4    there ys in loue / some cloude ouer the sonne
5    thereto we wetched women nothyng conne
6    whan to vs ys wo / but wepe and syt and thyngke
7    our wreake ys thys / our owne wo to doo drynke


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Transcribed by TH2, this entry is an excerpt from Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde (Book II, lines 778-84) -- a long poem based on Petrarch's Rime 132. TH2 most likely copied from Thynne's edition of Chaucer (c. 1532). This passage features part of a soliloquy by Criseyde in which she weighs the advantages and drawbacks for women to love men; she describes love as bringing stormy passages, mistrust, and strife, since women remain powerless in the face of adversity.

The Devonshire Manuscript contains numerous other verses from Troilus and Criseyde (see: "And now my pen alas wyth wyche I wryte" (29v(1)), "O very lord / o loue / o god alas" (29v(2)), "O ye louers that hygh vpon the whele" (30r), "for thylke grownde that bearyth the wedes wycke" (59v), "yff yt be so that ye so creuel be" (91r(2)), "Wo worthe the fayre gemme vertulesse" (91v(1)), "Also wyckyd tonges byn so prest" (91v(3)), "And who that sayth that for to love ys vyce" (92r), and "but now helpe god to quenche all thys sorow" (93r)). Other medieval and Chaucerian excerpts in the manuscript, possibly copied from Thynne's edition, include selections from Hoccleve ("Womans harte vnto no creweltye" (89v(1)) and "ys thys afayre / ys thys honor" (89v(2)), Richard Roos' La Belle Dame Sans Merci ("O marble herte and yet more harde perde" (90r(1)) and "Alas what shuld yt be to yow preiudyce" (90r(2)), the Chaucerian Remedy of Love first printed in Thynne's edition ("yff all the erthe were parchment scybable" (90r), and Chaucer's Anelida and Arcite ("for thowgh I had yow to morow agayne" (91r)).

TH2 separates the passages on the page with flourishes.

Textual Notes

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Texts Collated

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1 for] For T5068.06 ys] is T5068.06
2 ryght off hymself / that] Right of him selfe/that T5068.06
3 for] For T5068.06 mystrust / or] mistrust/or T5068.06
4 there] There T5068.06 ys] is T5068.06 loue / some] loue/some T5068.06
5 thereto] Therto T5068.06 wetched] wretched T5068.06
6 whan] Whan T5068.06 to] T5068.06 ys] is T5068.06 wo / but] wo/but T5068.06 thyngke] thynke T5068.06
7 our wreake ys] Our wreche is T5068.06 thys / our] this/our T5068.06 drynke] drinke T5068.06