The Parliament in Heaven Between God the Father and the Virtues, and the Annunciation of Gabriel to Mary
Fowre thowsand sex vndryd foure, I telle,
Man for his ofens and fowle foly
Hath loyn 3erys in þe peynes of helle,
And were wurthy to ly þerin endlesly;
But thanne xulde perysche 3oure grete mercye.
Good Lord, haue on man pyté!
Haue mende of þe prayour seyd by Ysaie,
Lete mercy meke þin hyest magesté.
And com down here into erth,
And levyn 3erys thre and threttye,
Thyn famyt folke with þi fode to fede.
To staunche þi thrysté lete þi syde blede,
For erste wole not be mad redempcyon.
Cum vesyte vs in þis tyme of nede.
Of þi careful creaturys, Lord, haue compassyon!
For God hath haddyd ssorwe to sorwe!
I prey þe, Lord, þi sowlys com se,
How þei ly and sobbe for syknes and sorwe.
With þi blyssyd blood from balys hem borwe,
Thy careful creaturys cryenge in captyvyté.
A, tary not, gracyous Lord, tyl it be tomorwe!
The devyl hath dysceyved hem be his iniquité.
þat I may wepe bothe day and nyght
To se oure bretheryn in so longe peynes?"
Here myschevys amende may þi mech myght.
As grett as þe se, Lord, was Adamys contryssyon ryght.
From oure bed is falle þe crowne.
Man is comeryd in synne, I crye to þi syght:
Gracyous Lord, gracyous Lord, gracyous Lord, come downe!
Lord, plesyth it þin hy3 domynacyon
On man þat þu mad to haue pyté.
Patryarchys and prophetys han mad supplycacyon,
Oure offyse is to presente here prayerys to the.
Aungelys, archaungelys, we thre
þat ben in þe fyrst ierarchie,
For man to þin hy magesté
Mercy, mercy, mercy we crye!
Whos synne hath mad hym a devyl in helle,
He mevyd man to be so contraryous.
Man repentyd, and he in his obstynacye doth dwelle.
Hese grett males, good Lord, repelle,
And take man onto þi grace;
Lete þi mercy make hym with aungelys dwelle,
Of Locyfere to restore þe place.
Propter miseriam inopum et gemitum pauperum nunc exurgam.
For þe wretchydnes of þe nedy
And þe porys lamentacyon
Now xal I ryse þat am almyghty;
Tyme is come of reconsyliacyon!
My prophetys with prayers haue made supplicacyon,
My contryte creaturys crye all for comforte.
All myn aungellys in hefne withowte cessacyon,
They crye þat grace to man myght exorte.
Lord, I am þi dowtere Trewth.
þu wylt se I be not lore.
Thyn vnkynde creaturys to save were rewthe:
The offens of man hath grevyd þe sore.
Whan Adam had synnyd þu seydest þore
þat he xulde deye and go to helle.
And now to blysse hym to resstore —
Twey contraryes mow not togedyr dwelle!
I may in no wyse fro þe go.
þat wretche þat was to þe so vnkende,
He may not haue to meche wo!
He dyspysyd þe and plesyd þi fo.
þu art his creatour and he is þi creature.
þu hast lovyd trewthe, it is seyd, evyrmo;
þerfore in peynes lete hym evyrmore endure.
O Fadyr of Mercy and God of Comforte
þat counsell us in eche trybulacyon,
Lete 3oure dowtere Mercy to 3ow resorte,
And on man þat is myschevyd haue compassyon.
Hym grevyth ful gretly his transgressyon.
All hefne and erthe crye for mercy;
Mesemyth þer xuld be non excepcyon,
Ther prayers ben offeryd so specyally.
I graunt it wel: she hath be so.
And þu seyst endlessly þat mercy þu hast kept for man;
Than, mercyabyl Lorde, kepe us bothe to.
Thu seyst, "Veritas mea et Misericordia mea cum ipso;"
Suffyr not þi sowlys than in sorwe to slepe.
þat helle hownde þat hatyth þe, byddyth hym ho;
þi love, man, no lengere lete hym kepe.
Mercy, me merveylyth what 3ow movyth!
3e know wel I am 3oure systere Ryghtwysnes.
God is ryghtful and ryghtifulnes lovyth.
Man offendyd hym þat is endles,
Therfore his endles punchement may nevyr se[se].
Also he forsoke his makere þat made hym of clay,
And þe devyl to his maystyr he ches.
Xulde he be savyd? Nay, nay, nay!
This was þe abhomynabyl presumpcyon.
It is seyd 3e know wel þis of me,
þat þe ryghtwysnes of God hath no diffynicyon.
Therffore late þis be oure conclusyon:
He þat sore synnyd ly stylle in sorwe.
He may nevyr make aseyth be resoun:
Whoo myght thanne thens hym borwe?
Systyr Ryghtwysnes, 3e are to vengeabyl.
Endles synne God endles may restore.
Above all hese werkys God is mercyabyl.
þow he forsook God be synne, be feyth he forsook hym nevyr þe more.
And þow he presumyd nevyr so sore,
3e must consyder þe frelnes of mankende.
Lerne, and 3e lyst; þis is Goddys lore:
þe mercy of God is withowtyn ende.
To spare 3oure speches, systerys, it syt:
It is not onest in Vertuys to ben dyscencyon.
The pes of God ovyrcomyth all wytt.
þow Trewth and Ryght sey grett resoun,
3ett Mercy seyth best to my pleson.
For yf mannys sowle xulde abyde in helle,
Betwen God and man evyr xulde be dyvysyon,
And than myght not I, Pes, dwelle.
Than hefne and erthe 3e xul qweme;
Putt bothe 3oure sentens in oure Lorde,
And.in his hy3 wysdam lete hym deme.
This is most syttynge me xulde seme,
And lete se how we fowre may all abyde.
þat mannys sowle it xulde perysche, it wore sweme,
Or þat ony of vs fro othere xulde dyvyde.
In trowthe hereto I consente,
I wole prey oure Lorde it may so be.
I, Ryghtwysnes, am wele contente,
For in hym is very equyté.
And I, Mercy, fro þis counsel wole not fle
Tyl Wysdam hath seyd I xal ses.
Here is God now, here is Vnyté;
Hefne and erth is plesyd with pes.
I thynke þe thoughtys of pes and nowth of wykkydnes.
This I deme, to ses 3oure contraversy.
If Adam had not deyd, peryschyd had Ryghtwysnes,
And also Trewth had be lost þerby.
Trewth and Ryght wolde chastyse foly.
3iff another deth come not, Mercy xulde perysch;
þan Pes were exyled fynyaly.
So tweyn dethis must be, 3ow fowre to cherysch.
þat in hym may ben non iniquyté,
þat helle may holde hym be no lawe,
But þat he may pas at hese lyberté.
Qwere swyche on his prevyde and se,
And hese deth for mannys deth xal be redempcyon.
All hefne and erth seke flow 3e.
Plesyth it 3ow þis conclusyon.
I, Trowthe, haue sowte þe erthe withowt and withinne,
And in sothe þer kan non be fownde
þat is of o day byrth withowte synne,
Nor to þat deth wole be bownde.
I, Mercy, haue ronne þe hevynly regyon rownde,
And þer is non of þat charyté
þat for man wole suffre a deddly wounde.
I cannott wete how þis xal be.
Sure I can fynde non sufficyent,
For servauntys vnprofytable we be echon.
He[se] love nedyth to be ful ardent
That for man to helle wolde gon.
That god may do is non but on.
þerfore þis is Pesys avyse:
He þat 3aff þis counsell, lete hym 3eve þe comforte alon,
For þe conclusyon in hym of all þese lyse.
It peyneth me þat man I mad;
þat is to seyn, peyne I must sufre fore.
A counsel of þe Trinité must be had.
Whiche of vs xal man restore?
In 3oure wysdam, son, man was mad thore,
And in wysdam was his temptacyon.
þerfor, sone, sapyens 3e must ordeyn herefore,
And se how of man may be salvacyon.
Fadyr, he þat xal do þis must be both God and man —
Lete me se how I may were þat wede.
And syth in my wysdam he began,
I am redy to do þis dede.
I, the Holy Gost, of 3ow tweyn do procede.
This charge I wole take on me:
I, Love, to 3oure lover xal 3ow lede.
þis is þe assent of oure Vnyté.
Now is þe loveday mad of us fowre fynialy,
Now may we leve in pes as we were wonte.
Misericordia et Veritas obviauerunt sibi,
Justicia et Pax osculate sunt.
Et hic osculabunt pariter omnes.
From vs, god aungel Gabryel, þu xalt be sende
Into þe countré of Galylé —
The name of þe cyté Nazareth is kende —
To a mayd, weddyd to a man is she,
Of whom þe name is Joseph, se,
Of þe hous of Davyd bore.
The name of þe mayd fre
Is Mary, þat xal al restore.
Say þat she is withowte wo and ful of grace,
And þat I, þe Son of þe Godhed, of here xal be bore.
Hy3e þe, þu were there apace,
Ellys we xal be there the beffore,
I haue so grett hast to be man thore
In þat mekest and purest virgyne.
Sey here she xal restore
Of 3ow aungellys þe grett ruyne.
And if she aske þe how it myth be,
Telle here I, þe Holy Gost, xal werke al this.
Sche xal be savyd thorwe oure Vnyté.
In tokyn, here bareyn cosyn Elyzabeth is
Qwyk with childe in here grett age, iwys.
Sey here to vs is nothynge impossyble.
Here body xal be so fulfylt with blys
þat she xal sone thynke þis sownde credyble.
In thyn hey inbassett, Lord, I xal go;
It xal be do with a thought.
Beholde now, Lord, I go here to;
I take my flyth and byde nowth.
Heyl, ful of grace, God is with the.
Amonge all women blyssyd art thu.
Here þis name Eva is turnyd Aue;
þat is to say, withowte sorwe ar 3e now.
3ett of joy, lady, 3e nede more.
Therfore I adde and sey "ful of grace,"
For so ful of grace was nevyr non bore.
3ett who hath grace, he nedyth kepyng sore;
Therfore I sey God is with the,
Whiche xal kepe 3ow endlesly thore.
So amonge all women bly[ss]yd are 3e.
A, mercy, God, þis is a mervelyous herynge,
In þe aungelys wordys I am trobelyd her.
I thynk, how may be þis gretynge?
Aungelys dayly to me doth aper,
But not in þe lyknes of man þat is my fer.
And also thus hy3ly to comendyd be,
And am most vnwurthy, I cannot answere.
Grett shamfastnes and grett dred is in me.
Mary, in þis take 3e no drede,
For at God grace fownde haue 3e.
3e xal conceyve in 3oure wombe indede
A childe, þe sone of þe Trynyté.
His name of 3ow Jesu clepyd xal be.
He xal be grett, þe Son of þe Hyest clepyd, of kende.
And of his fadyr, Davyd, þe Lord xal 3eve hym þe se,
Reynyng in þe hous of Jacob, of which regne xal be non ende.
Aungel, I sey to 3ow,
In what manere of wyse xal þis be?
For knowyng of man I haue non now:
I haue evyrmore kept and xal my virginyté.
I dowte not þe wordys 3e þan seyd. to me,
But I aske how it xal be do.
The Holy Gost xal come fro above to the,
And be vertu of hym hyest xal schadu þe so.
He xal be clepyd þe Son of God sage.
And se Elyzabeth, 3oure cosyn thore,
She hath conseyvid a son in hyre age.
This is þe sexte monyth of here passage,
Of here þat clepyd was bareyn.
Nothynge is impossyble to Goddys vsage.
They thynkyth longe to here what 3e wyl seyn.
Here þe aungel makyth a lytyl restynge and Mary beholdyth hym, and þe aungel seyth:
And take hede in thyn entent
Whow þe Holy Gost, blyssyd he be,
Abydyth þin answere and þin assent.
Thorwe wyse werke of dyvinyté,
The secunde persone, verament,
Is mad man by fraternyté
Withinne þiself in place present.
Whow all þe blyssyd spyrytys of vertu
þat are in hefne byffore Goddys face,
And all be gode levers and trew
That are here in þis erthely place,
Thyn owyn kynrede, be sothe ho knew,
And þe chosyn sowlys þis tyme of grace
þat are in helle and byde rescu,
And many othere of good reputacyon,
þat þin answere desyre to here,
And þin assent to þe Incarnacyon,
In which þu standyst as persevere
Of all mankende savacyon.
Gyff me myn answere now, lady dere,
To all these creaturys comfortacyon.
With all mekenes I clyne to þis acorde,
Bowynge down my face with all benyngnyté.
Se here þe handmayden of oure Lorde,
Aftyr þi worde be it don to me.
Gramercy, my lady fre,
Gramercy of 3oure answere on hyght.
Gramercy of 3oure grett humylyté,
Gramercy, 3e lanterne off lyght!
Here þe Holy Gost discendit with iij bemys to oure Lady, the Sone of þe Godhed nest with iij bemys to þe Holy Gost, the Fadyr godly with iij bemys to þe Sone. And so entre all thre to here bosom, and Mary seyth:
A, now I fele in my body be
Parfyte God and parfyte man,
Havyng aL schapp of chyldly carnalyté;
Evyn aL at onys þus God began,
But parfyte childhod 3e haue anon.
Of 3oure handmayden now 3e haue mad 3oure modyr
Withowte peyne in flesche and bon.
Thus conceyved nevyr woman non
þat evyr was beynge in þis lyff.
O myn hyest Fadyr in 3oure tron,
It is worthy 3oure son — now my son — haue a prerogatyff.
Now I fele in my body!
Aungel Gabryel, I thank 3ow for thys.
Most mekely recomende me to my Faderys mercy.
To haue be þe modyr of God ful lytyl wend I.
Now myn cosyn Elyzabeth fayn wold I se,
How sche hath conseyvid as 3e dede specyfy.
Now blyssyd be þe hy3 Trynyté.
Fareweyl, turtyl, Goddys dowtere dere.
Farewel, Goddys modyr. I þe honowre.
Farewel, Goddys sustyr and his pleynge fere;
Farewel, Goddys chawmere and his bowre.
Farewel, Gabryel, specyalé.
Farewel, Goddys masangere expresse.
I thank 3ow for 3oure traveyl hye;
Gramercy of 3oure grett goodnes,
For I vndyrstande by inspyracyon
þat 3e knowe by syngulere preuylage
Most of my sonys Incarnacyon.
I pray 3ow, take it into vsage
Be a custom ocupacyon
To vesyte me ofte be mene passage;
3oure presence is my comfortacyon.
At 3oure wyl, lady, so xal it be,
3e gentyllest of blood and hyest of kynrede
þat reynyth in erth in ony degré,
Be pryncypal incheson of þe Godhede.
O mekest mayde, now be modyr of Jesu.
Qwen of Hefne, Lady of Erth, and Empres of Helle be 3e;
Socour to all synful þat wole to 3ow sew
Thorwe 3oure body beryth þe babe oure blysse xal renew.
To 3ow, Modyr of Mercy, most mekely I recomende.
And as I began I ende, with an Ave new
Enjouyd hefne and erth; with þat I ascende.
Angeli cantando istam sequenciam:
Aue Maria, gratia plena,
Dominus tecum, virgo serena."
2019 Nov 25 16:21:41