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At that wide orifice her trembling hart
Was drawne forth, and in silver basin layd,
Her forward still with torture did constraine,
Next after her the winged God himselfe
Came riding on a Lion ravenous,
Faire Dame he might behold in perfect kind ;
Of which full proud, himselfe up rearing hye, xxiii
He looked round about with sterne disdaine ;
That all his many it affraide did make :
Behinde him was Reproch, Repentance, Shame ;
Reproch the first, Shame next, Repent behind :
Shame most ill favourd, bestiall, and blind :
Shame burning brond-yrons in her hand did hold : All three to each unlike, yet all made in one mould.
And after them a rude confused rout
Of persons flockt, whose names is hard to read :.
Of heavenly vengeance, faint Infirmitie,
There were full many moe like maladies,
xxvi Whose names and natures I note readen well ; So many moe, as there be phantasies In wavering wemens wit, that none can tell, Or paines in love, or punishments in hell ; All which disguized marcht in masking wise, About the chamber with that Damozell,
And then returned, having marched thrise, Into the inner roome, from whence they first did rise.
So soone as they were in, the dore streight way xxvii
Fast locked, driven with that stormy blast,
In vaine she thought with rigorous uprore
Book IV, Canto VI, i–xli
And pyning anguish hid in gentle hart,
Such was the wound that Scudamour did gride ;
The next day, as he on his way did ride, Full of melancholie and sad misfare, Through misconceipt ; all unawares espide An armed Knight under a forrest side, Sitting in shade beside his grazing steede ; Who soone as them approaching he descride, Gan towards them to pricke with eger speede, That seem'd he was full bent to some mischievous deede. Which Scudamour perceiving, forth issewed
I me submit, and you of pardon pray,
For any knight, upon a ventrous knight
What is your owne, that I mote you requite.
For time yet serves that I the same refuse,
Then this, Sir Salvage Knight (quoth he) areede ;
On whom I waite to wreake that foule despight,
Shame be his meede (quoth he) that meaneth shame. vi
But what is he, by whom ye shamed were ?
And having me all wearie earst, downe feld,
When Scudamour heard mention of that speare,
He wist right well, that it was Britomart,
Which that same knight, whom by his launce I read, Hath doen to noble knights, that many makes him dread.
For lately he my love hath fro me reft,
viii And eke defiled with foule villanie The sacred pledge, which in his faith was left, In shame of knighthood and fidelitie ; The which ere long full deare he shall abie. And if to that avenge by you decreed This hand may helpe, or succour ought supplie,
It shall not fayle, when so ye shall it need. So both to wreake their wrathes on Britomart agreed.
Whiles thus they communed, lo farre away
A Knight soft ryding towards them they spyde,
That first I may that wrong to him requite :
Which being yeelded, he his threatfull speare
Gan fewter, and against her fiercely ran. Who soone as she him saw approaching neare With so fell rage, her selfe she lightly gan To dight, to welcome him, well as she can : But entertaind him in so rude a wise, That to the ground she smote both horse and man; Whence neither greatly hasted to arise, But on their common harmes together did devise.
But Artegall beholding his mischaunce,
New matter added to his former fire ;