George L. Craik: "Canto V. (57 stanzas). — As soon as it is dawn the Knight and the Amazonian Queen both proceed to array themselves for the coming fight; the latter, 'All in a camis light of purple silk | Woven upon with silver, subtly wrought, | And quilted upon satin white as milk; | Trailed with ribands diversly distraught'.... Thus attired, she issues from the city gate, in the midst of a numerous guard of damsels, 'Playing on shalms and trumpets, that from hence | Their sound did reach unto the heavens' height' ... and retires to a rich pavilion prepared for her reception. Artegal first enters the lists; and now, in the midst of a vast expecting multitude, the trumpets sound, and the combat begins. 'With bitter strokes it both began and ended.' Radigund at first rushes on with furious rage but she is received by Artegal with a firmness upon which she can make no impression, and, as soon as her strength begins somewhat to abate, he becomes the assailant....
"With a blow of his trenchant blade he slices off the half of her shield; and she with her sharp scymitar wounds him in the thigh. Another of his puissant strokes shatters the remainder of her shield to pieces; arid then with a blow upon her helmet he fells her to the ground. But when he has unlaced her helmet, intending to cut off her head, such a miracle of nature's fairest workmanship blazes out upon him from her lace, bathed as it is in blood and sweat — 'Like as the moon, in foggy winter's night, | Doth seem to be herself, though darkened be her light' — that his astonished heart is pierced with pity, and he throws his sword from him, 'Cursing his hand that had that visage marred | No hand so cruel, nor no heart so hard, | But ruth of beauty will it mollify.'
"Meanwhile the lady, recovering from her swoon, suddenly starts up, and, seeing her adversary weaponless, not very generously assails him again as fiercely as ever. He defends himself as well as he can from her pitiless storm of blows, and also earnestly entreats her to discontinue her fury; but, as a puttock, or kite, that may have seen a gentle falcon sitting on a lull with one of its wings broken, will attack and persist in annoying it, so does she continue to lay on for all that he can do or say. At last, as he has no means of either returning or staving her strokes, nothing is left for him but to deliver up his shield, and yield himself to her mercy. Thus is he condemned by doom of his own mouth to be her thrall; having by abandoning his sword lost the victory he at first had won. Radigund merely strikes him with the flat of her sword, in sign of his vassalage, while the more unfortunate Terpin is at once attached and swung up on the gallows, from which he had so lately escaped in vain. 'But, when they thought on Talus hands to lay, | He with his iron flail amongst them thundered, | That they were fain to let him scape away'....
"Then the Amazon, taking Artegal, causes him to be stripped of all his knightly ornaments, and to be shamefully arrayed instead in woman's weeds, with a white apron before him in place of 'curiets and bases,' or cuirasses and cuisses. Then she brings him into 'a long large chamber,' where she makes his arms be suspended aloft, and breaks his sword, and where he sees all around him 'Many brave knights whose names right well he knew, | There bound to obey that Amazon's proud law, | Spinning and carding all in comely rew, | That his big heart loathed so uncomely view'.... The noble Artegal is placed the lowest of all, and a distaff is given him on which to spin flax and tow; 'A sordid office for a mind so brave: | So hard it is to be a woman's slave!' Yet, having plighted his faith to obey his conqueror as a vassal, he submits. As may he expected, the poet does not forget to compare him to Hercules, when, 'for lola's sake,' as he has it — putting Iola, or Iole, by mistake for Omphale — he had exchanged his club for a distaff, and his lion's skin for a pall of gold; 'In which, forgetting wars, he only joyed | In combats of sweet love, and with his mistress toyed.' Such, it is added, is the cruelty of womankind whenever they shake off the wise law of nature which binds them 'to obey the hests of man's well-ruling hand; | For virtuous women wisely understand, | That they were born to base humility, | Unless the heavens them lift to lawful sovreignty' — the last line being, of course, a salvo to prevent offence being taken by Elizabeth.
"Artegal long remains thus in subjection to the proud queen; meanwhile her wandering fancy is taken captive by her captive; for a long time her love struggles with her pride but at last she secretly calls to her her most trusted handmaid, Clarinda (the same who has already been mentioned as Clarin), and, after for a moment turning away her head, 'as half abashed, | To hide the blush which in her visage rose | And through her eyes like sudden lightning flashed, | Decking her cheek with a vermilion rose,' composes her countenance, and confesses that she has that to disclose in regard to which through dread of shame she would fain be silent. Clarinda urges her to speak with soothing, encouraging words: — 'Say on. my sovereign lady, and be bold: | Doth not your handmaid's life at your foot lie?' and then she tells her all; and engages her to endeavour, by any way she can devise, to win Artegal to feelings answering to her own, yet without discovering to him that he is himself loved. That her confidante may the better bring this to pass, she gives her a ring, which will he, she tells her, a warrant to old Eumenias, the keeper of the place where Artegal is confined, to afford her free passage in arid out whenever she chooses. And 'Go now,' she says, 'Clarinda, well thy wits advise, | And all thy forces gather unto thee, | Armies of lovely looks, and speeches wise | With which thou canst even Jove himself to love entise.'
"Clarinda accordingly proceeds with all zeal to execute her delicate commission, beginning by trying, by all the means she may, 'to curry favour with the elfin knight, her lady's best beloved.' After some time she one day takes an opportunity of suggesting to him that there is a way in which he might very probably succeed in rescuing himself from his unhappy state: — why should he not try what he can do to move Radigund by fair entreaty to give him his liberty? Although she has spent her days in war, yet she was not born of bears and tigers; nor, although she scorn all love of men, is she for that more secure than others of her sex against the all-conquering power. Excited by the thoughts she has put into his head, Artegal admits that as 'a queen, and come of queenly kind,' Radigund is abundantly worthy to be sued unto, especially by one whose life is in her hands by right as well as in fact; and he adds that if by Clarinda's good offices he could procure the necessary means he certainly would make the attempt. 'She feeling him thus bite upon the bait, | Yet, doubting lest his hold was but unsound | And not well fastened, would not strike him straight, | But drew him on with hope, fit leisure to await.'
"Poor Clarinda, however, too heedless herself of the hook, ere long loses her own footing, and, slipping into the water, is caught with the bait she lays for another; wounded 'with her deceit's own dart,' the foolish maid finds that she has herself fallen in love with Artegal. She does not dare to reveal her affection either to himself or any other; but when her mistress one day sends for her, and asks her what tidings she has of good success, she pretends that she has found the Fairy Knight quite obstinate and stern, and determined rather to die than entertain a thought of love for his enemy: 'his body was her thrall, his heart was freely placed,' — that was his immoveable determination. 'Which when the cruel Amazon perceived, | She gan to storm, and rage, and rend her gall, | For very fell despite, which she conceived, | To be so scorned of a baseborn thrall, | Whose life did lie in her least eye-lid's fall.'
"Of that life she vows, with many, a menacing curse, he shall soon be deprived. When her heat is over, however, she sees matters in another light — and desires CIarinda to try the stubborn knight again with more various and more searching temptations: — 'Say and do all that may thereto prevail; | Leave nought unpromised that may him persuade, | Life, freedom, grace, and gifts of great avail, | With which the gods themselves are milder made | Thereto add art, even women's witty trade'.... Thus charged, the false maiden returns to the prison. 'There all her subtile nets she did unfold, | And all the engines of her wit display' so that she deceived and betrayed at once her lady, the knight, and herself.
"Radigund she beguiles, even as a wicked nurse, who, pretending to feed her child out of her mouth, swallows what she receives therein herself; and leaves the child unnourished; for she pretends to Artegal that she has made earnest suit for his freedom in vain; that, on the contrary, her mistress's orders are that she shall augment his sufferings and load him with iron fetters; all which, nevertheless, she forbears to do for the love she bears him — 'so praying him to accept her service evermore.' She even promises that, 'in case she might find favour in his eye,' she will devise some way of setting him at liberty. Artegal, tempted by this prospect, warmly thanks her for her courtesy, 'And, with fair words, fit for the time and place, | To feed the humour of her malady,' promises that, if she will indeed do for him what she says, he will do what he can to merit such grace.
"Yet for all this, never, we are assured, does he mean in his noble mind 'to his own absent love to be untrue.' Neither does Clarinda for her part mean ever to procure him his liberty, but rather to fix him in faster bondage. Yet in the meantime she somewhat amends his scanty fare, and also lessens his work, in the hope that his love may thereby grow. And thus he long remains in the hands of the mistress and the maid — 'of both beloved well, but little friended;' till at last his deliverance is achieved by his own Britomart. But that will he best related in another Canto" Spenser and his Poetry (1845; 1871) 2:208-15.
Arthegal fights with Radigund,
And is subdu'd by Guile:
He is by her emprisoned,
But wrought by Clarind's Wile.
So soon as Day, forth dawning from the East,
Night's humid Curtain from the Heavens withdrew,
And early calling forth both Man and Beast,
Commanded them their daily Works renew,
These noble Warriors, mindful to pursue
The last Day's Purpose of their vowed Fight,
Themselves thereto prepar'd in Order due;
The Knight, as best was seeming for a Knight;
And th' Amazon, as best it lik'd her self to dight.
All in a Camis light of Purple Silk,
Woven upon with Silver, subtly wrought,
And quilted upon Sattin white as Milk,
Trailed with Ribbands diversly distraught,
Like as the Workman had their Courses taught;
Which was short tucked for light Motion
Up to her Ham: but when she list, it raught
Down to her lowest Heel, and thereupon
She wore for her Defence a mailed Habergeon.
And on her Legs she painted Buskins wore,
Basted with Bends of Gold on every side,
And Mails between, and laced close afore:
Upon her Thigh her Scimiter was ty'd,
With an embroider'd Belt of mickle Pride;
And on her Shoulder hung her Shield, bedeck'd
Upon the Boss with Stones, that shined wide,
As the fair Moon in her most full Aspect,
That to the Moon it mote be like in each respect.
So forth she came out of the City-Gate,
With stately Port and proud Magnificence,
Guarded with many Damsels, that did wait
Upon her Person for her sure Defence,
Playing on Shaums and Trumpets, that from hence
Their Sound did reach unto the Heaven's Height.
So forth into the Field she marched thence,
Where was a rich Pavilion ready pight,
Her to receive, till time they should begin the Fight.
Then forth came Arthegal out of his Tent,
All arm'd to point, and first the List did enter:
Soon after eke came she, with fell Intent,
And Countenance fierce, as having fully bent her,
That Battel's utmost Trial to adventure.
The Lists were closed fast, to bar the Rout
From rudely pressing to the middle Center;
Which in great Heaps them circled all about,
Waiting how Fortune would resolve that dangerous Doubt.
The Trumpets sounded, and the Field began;
With bitter Strokes it both began and ended.
She at the first Encounter on him ran
With furious Rage, as if she had intended
Out of his Breast the very Heart have rended:
But he that had like Tempests often try'd,
From that first Flaw himself right well defended.
The more she rag'd, the more he did abide;
She hew'd, the foin'd, she lash'd, she laid on every side.
Yet still her Blows he bore, and her forbore,
Weening at last to win advantage new;
Yet still her Cruelty encreased more,
And though Pow'r fail'd, her Courage did accrue:
Which failing, he 'gan fiercely her pursue;
Like as a Smith that to his cunning Feat
The stubborn Metal seeketh to subdue,
Soon as he feels it mollify'd with Heat,
With his great Iron Sledge doth strongly on it beat.
So did Sir Arthegal upon her lay,
As if she had an Iron Anvil been,
That Flakes of Fire, bright as the sunny Ray,
Out of her steely Arms were flashing seen,
That all on fire ye would her surely ween.
But with her Shield so well her self she warded,
From the drad Danger of his Weapon keen,
That all that while her Life she safely guarded:
But he that Help from her against her Will discarded.
For with his trenchant Blade at the next Blow
Half of her Shield he shared quite away
That half her Side it self did naked show,
And thenceforth unto Danger open'd way.
Much was she moved with the mighty Sway
Of that sad Stroke, that half-enrag'd she grew,
And like a greedy Bear unto her Prey,
With her sharp Scimiter at him she flew,
That glancing down his Thigh, the Purple Blood forth drew.
Thereat she 'gan to triumph with great Boast,
And to up-braid that Chance which him mis-fell,
As if the Prize she gotten had almost,
With spightful Speeches, fitting with her well;
That his great Heart 'gan inwardly to swell
With Indignation, at her Vaunting vain,
And at her strook with Puissance fearful fell;
Yet with her Shield she warded it again,
That shatter'd all to pieces round about the Plain.
Having her thus disarmed of her Shield,
Upon her Helmet he again her strook,
That down she fell upon the grassy Field,
In sensless Swoun, as if her Life forsook,
And Pangs of Death her Spirit overtook.
Whom when he saw before his Foot prostrated,
He to her lept, with deadly dreadful Look,
And her sunshiny Helmet soon unlac'd,
Thinking at once both Head and Helmet to have rac'd.
But when-as he discover'd had her Face,
He saw his Sense's strange Astonishment,
A Miracle of Nature's goodly Grace,
In her fair Visage void of Ornament,
But bath'd in Blood and Sweat together ment;
Which, in the Rudeness of that evil Plight,
Bewray'd the Signs of Feature excellent:
Like as the Moon in foggy Winter's Night,
Doth seem to be her self, though darkned be her Light.
At sight thereof his cruel minded Heart
Empierced was with pitiful Regard,
That his sharp Sword he threw from him apart,
Cursing his Hand that had that Visage marr'd:
No Hand so cruel, nor no Heart so hard,
But Ruth of Beauty will it mollify.
By this, upstarting from her Swoun; she star'd
Awhile about her with confused Eye;
Like one that from his Dream is waked suddenly.
Soon as the Knight she there by her did spy,
Standing with empty Hands all weaponless,
With fresh Assault upon him she did fly,
And 'gan renew her former Cruelness:
And though he still retir'd, yet natheless
With huge redoubled Strokes she on him laid;
And more encreas'd her Outrage merciless,
The more that he with meek Intreaty pray'd,
Her wrathful Hand from greedy Vengeance to have stay'd.
Like as a Puttock having spy'd in sight
A gentle Falcon sitting on an Hill,
Whose other Wing, now made unmeet for Flight,
Was lately broken by some Fortune ill;
The foolish Kite, led with licentious Will,
Doth beat upon the gentle Bird in vain,
With many idle Stoups her troubling still:
Even so did Radigund with bootless Pain
Annoy this noble Knight, and sorely him constrain.
Nought could he do, but shun the drad Despight
Of her fierce Wrath, and backward still retire,
And with his single Shield, well as he might,
Bear off the Burden of her raging Ire;
And evermore he gently did desire,
To stay her Strokes, and he himself would yield:
Yet nould she heark, ne let him once respire,
Till he to her deliver'd had his Shield,
And to her Mercy him submitted in plain Field.
So was he overcome, not overcome,
But to her yielded of his own accord;
Yet was he justly damned by the Doom
Of his own Mouth, that spake so wareless word,
To be her Thrall, and Service her afford.
For though that he first Victory obtain'd,
Yet after by abandoning his Sword,
He wilful lost, that he before attain'd:
No fairer Conquest, than that with Good-will is gain'd.
Tho with her Sword on him she flatling strook,
In sign of true Subjection to her Pow'r,
And as her Vassal him to Thraldom took.
But Terpine, born to a more unhappy hour,
As he, on whom the luckless Stars did lour,
She caus'd to be attach'd, and forthwith led
Unto the Crook t' abide the baleful Stow'r,
From which he lately had through Rescue fled:
Where he full shamefully was hanged by the Head.
But when they thought on Talus Hands to lay,
He with his iron Flail amongst them thunder'd,
That they were fain to let him 'scape away,
Glad from his Company to be so sonder'd;
Whose Presence all their Troops so much encumber'd
That th' Heaps of those, which he did wound and slay,
Besides the rest dismay'd, might not be number'd:
Yet all that while he would not once assay
To rescue his own Lord, but thought it just t' obey.
Then took the Amazon this noble Knight,
Left to her Will by his own wilful Blame,
And caused him to be disarmed quite
Of all the Ornaments of knightly Name,
With which whilom he gotten had great Fame:
In stead whereof she made him to be dight
In Woman's Weeds, that is to Manhood Shame,
And put before his Lap an Apron white,
In stead of Curiets, and Bases fit for Fight.
So being clad, she brought him from the Field,
In which he had been trained many a day,
Into a long large Chamber, which was ciel'd
With Monuments of many Knights Decay,
By her subdued in victorious Fray;
Amongst the which he caus'd his warlike Arms
Be hang'd on high, that mote his Shame bewray;
And broke his Sword, for fear of further Harms,
With which he wont to stir up battelous Alarms.
There enter'd in, he round about him saw
Many brave Knights, whose Names right well he knew,
There bound t' obey that Amazon's proud Law,
Spinning and carding all in comely rue,
That his big Heart loath'd so uncomely View.
But they were forc'd, through Penury and Pine,
To do those Works, to them appointed due:
For nought was given them to sup or dine
But what their Hands could earn by twisting linnen Twine.
Amongst them all she placed him most low,
And in his Hand a Distaff to him gave,
That he thereon should spin both Flax and Towe;
A sordid Office for a Mind so brave:
So hard it is to be a Woman's slave!
Yet he it took in his own self's Despight,
And thereto did himself right well behave,
Her to obey, sith he his Faith had plight,
Her Vassal to become, if she him won in Fight.
Who had him seen, imagine mote thereby,
That whilom hath of Hercules been told,
How for Iola's sake he did apply
His mighty Hands, the Distaff vile to hold,
For his huge Club, which had subdu'd of old
So many Monsters, which the World annoy'd;
His Lion's Skin chaung'd to a Pall of Gold,
In which forgetting Wars he only joy'd
In Combats of sweet Love, and with his Mistress toy'd.
Such is the Cruelty of Womankind,
When they have shaken off the shamefac'd Band,
With which wise Nature did them strongly bind,
T' obey the Heasts of Man's well-ruling Hand,
That then all Rule and Reason they withstand,
To purchase a licentious Liberty.
But vertuous Women wisely understand,
That they were born to base Humility,
Unless the Heav'ns them lift to lawful Sovereignty.
Thus there long while continu'd Arthegal,
Serving proud Radigund with true Subjection;
However it his noble Heart did gall,
T' obey a Woman's tyrannous Direction,
That might have had of Life or Death Election:
But having chosen, now he might not change.
During which time, the warlike Amazon,
Whose wandring Fancy after Lust did range,
'Gan cast a secret Liking to this Captive strange.
Which long concealing in her covert Breast,
She chaw'd the Cud of Lovers careful Plight;
Yet could it not so thoroughly digest,
Being fast fixed in her wounded Spright,
But it tormented her both day and night:
Yet would she not thereto yield free Accord,
To serve the lowly Vassal of her Might,
And of her Servant make her sovereign Lord:
So great her Pride, that she such Baseness much abhor'd.
So much the greater still her Anguish grew,
Through stubborn handling of her love-sick Heart;
And still the more she strove it to subdue,
The more she still augmented her own Smart,
And wider made the Wound of th' hidden Dart.
At last, when long she struggled had in vain,
She 'gan to stoop, and her proud Mind convert
To meek Obeysance of Love's mighty Rein,
And him entreat for Grace, that had procur'd her Pain.
Unto her self in secret she did call
Her nearest Handmaid, whom she most did trust,
And to her said; Clarinda, whom of all
I trust alive, sith I thee foster'd first;
Now is the time, that I untimely must
Thereof make trial in my greatest Need:
It is so happen'd, that the Heavens unjust,
Spighting my happy Freedom, have agreed
To thrall my looser Life, or my last Bale to breed.
With that she turn'd her Head, as half abash'd,
To hide the Blush which in her Visage rose,
And through her Eyes like sudden Lightning flash'd,
Decking her Cheek with a vermilion Rose:
But soon she did her Countenance compose,
And to her turning, thus began again;
This Grief's deep Wound I would to thee disclose,
Thereto compelled through heart-murdring Pain,
But Dread of Shame my doubtful Lips do still restrain.
Ah my dear Dread (said then the faithful Maid)
Can Dread of ought your dreadless Heart with-hold
That many hath with Dread of Death dismay'd,
And dare even Death's most dreadful Face behold?
Say on my sovereign Lady, and be bold.
Doth not your Handmaid's Life at your foot lie?
Therewith much comforted, she 'gan unfold
The Cause of her conceived Malady,
As one that would confess, yet fain would it deny.
Clarind', said she, thou seest yond Fairy Knight,
Whom not my Valour, but his own brave Mind
Subjected hath to my unequal Might;
What Right is it, that he should Thraldom find,
For lending Life to me a Wretch unkind,
That for such Good him recompence with Ill?
Therefore I cast how I may him unbind,
And by his Freedom get his free Good-will;
Yet so as bound to me, he may continue still:
Bound unto me, but not with such hard Bands
Of strong Compulsion, and straight Violence,
As now in miserable State he stands;
But with sweet Love and sure Benevolence,
Void of malicious Mind, or foul Offence.
To which if thou canst win him any way,
Without Discovery of my Thought's Pretence,
Both goodly Meed of him it purchase may,
And else with grateful Service me right well apay.
Which that thou mayst the better bring to pass,
Lo here this Ring, which shall thy Warrant be,
And Token true to old Eumenias,
From time to time, when thou it best shalt see,
That in and out thou mayst have Passage free.
Go now, Clarinda, well thy Wits advise,
And all thy Forces gather unto thee;
Armies of lovely Looks, and Speeches wise,
With which thou canst e'en Jove himself to Love entice.
The trusty Maid, conceiving her Intent,
Did with sure Promise of her good Endeavour,
Give her great Comfort, and some Heart's Content.
So from her parting, she thenceforth did labour,
By all the means she might, to curry Favour
With th' Elfin Knight, her Lady's best Beloved;
With daily Shew of courteous kind Behaviour,
Ev'n at the Mark-white of his Heart she rov'd,
And with wide-glancing Words, one day she thus him prov'd.
Unhappy Knight, upon whose hopeless State
Fortune, envying Good, hath felly frown'd,
And cruel Heav'ns have heap'd an heavy Fate;
I rue that thus thy better Days are drown'd
In sad Despair, and all thy Senses swoun'd
In stupid Sorrow, sith thy juster Merit
Might else have with Felicity been crown'd:
Look up at last, and wake thy dulled Spirit,
To think how this long Death thou mightest disinherit.
Much did he marvel at her uncouth Speech,
Whose hidden Drift he could not well perceive;
And 'gan to doubt, lest she him sought t' appeach
Of Treason, or some guileful Train did weave,
Through which she might his wretched Life bereave.
Both which to bar, he with this Answer met her;
Fair Damsel, that with Ruth (as I perceive)
Of my Mishaps, art mov'd to wish me better,
For such your kind Regard, I can but rest your Debtor.
Yet weet ye well, that to a Courage great
It is no less beseeming, well to bear
The Storm of Fortune's Frown, or Heaven's Threat,
Than in the Sunshine of her Count'nance clear
Timely to joy, and carry comely Chear.
For though this Cloud have now me overcast,
Yet do I not of better Times despair;
And though (unlike they should for ever last,
Yet in my Truth's Assurance I rest fixed fast.
But what so stony Mind (she then reply'd)
But if in his own pow'r Occasion try,
Would to his Hope a Window open wide,
And to his Fortune's Help make ready way?
Unworthy sure, quoth he, of better Day,
That will not take the Offer of good Hope,
And eke pursue, if he attain it may.
Which Speeches she applying to the Scope
Of her Intent, this further Purpose to him shope:
Then why dost not, thou ill-advised Man,
Make means to win thy Liberty forlorn,
And try if thou by fair Entreaty can
Move Radigund? who though she still have worn
Her Days in War, yet (weet thou) was not born
Of Bears and Tygers, nor so salvage minded,
As that, albe all Love of Men she scorn,
She yet forgets, that she of Men was kinded:
And sooth oft seen, that proudest Hearts base Love hath blinded.
Certes Clarinda, not of canker'd Will,
Said he, nor obstinate disdainful Mind,
I have forbore this Duty to fulfil:
For well I may this ween, by that I find,
That she a Queen, and come of Princely Kind,
Both worthy is for to be su'd unto,
Chiefly by him, whose Life her Law doth bind,
And eke of Pow'r her own Doom to undo,
And als of Princely Grace to be enclin'd thereto.
But want of Means hath been mine only Let
From seeking Favour, where it doth abound;
Which if I might by your good Office get,
I to your self should rest for ever bound,
And ready to deserve what Grace I found.
She feeling him thus bite upon the Bait,
Yet doubting lest his Hold was but unsound,
And not well fasten'd, would not strike him strait,
But drew him on with Hope, fit leisure to await.
But foolish Maid, whiles heedless of the Hook,
She thus oft-times was beating off and on,
Through slippery Footing, fell into the Brook,
And there was caught to her Confusion.
For seeking thus to salve the Amazon,
She wounded was with her Deceit's own Dart,
And 'gan thenceforth to cast Affection,
Conceived close in her beguiled Heart,
To Arthegal, through pity of his causless Smart.
Yet durst she not disclose her Fancy's Wound,
Ne to himself, for doubt of being 'sdain'd,
Ne yet to any other Wight on ground,
For fear her Mistress should have knowledge gain'd,
But to her self it secretly retain'd,
Within the Closet of her covert Breast;
The more thereby her tender Heart was pain'd.
Yet to await fit time she weened best,
And fairly did dissemble her sad Thoughts Unrest.
One day her Lady, calling her apart,
'Gan to demaund of her some Tidings good,
Touching her Love's Success, her lingring Smart,
Therewith she 'gan at first to change her Mood,
As one adaw'd, and half confused stood;
But quickly she it over-past, so soon
As she her Face had wip'd, to fresh her Blood:
Tho, 'gan she tell her all that she had done,
And all the ways she sought his Love for to have won:
But said, that he was obstinate and stern,
Scorning her Offers and Conditions vain;
We would be taught with any Terms to learn
So fond a Lesson, as to love again.
Die rather would he in penurious Pain,
And his abridged Days in Dolour waste,
Than his Foe's Love or Liking entertain:
His Resolution was both first and last,
His Body was her Thrall, his Heart was freely plac'd.
Which when the cruel Amazon perceiv'd,
She 'gan to storm, and rage, and rend her Gall,
For very fell Despight, which she conceiv'd
To be so scorned of a base-born Thrall,
Whose Life did lie in her least Eye-lid's Fall;
Of which she vow'd with many a cursed Threat,
That she therefore would him e'er long forestal.
Nathless, when calmed was her furious Heat,
She chang'd that threatful Mood, and mildly 'gan entreat.
What now is left, Clarinda? what remains,
That we may compass this our Enterprize?
Great Shame to lose so long employed Pains;
And greater Shame t' abide so great Misprise,
With which he dares our Offers thus despise.
Yet that his Guilt the greater may appear,
And more my gracious Mercy by this wize,
I will awhile with his first Folly bear,
Till thou have try'd again, and tempted him more near.
Say and do all that may thereto prevail;
Leave nought unpromis'd that may him persuade;
Life, Freedom, Grace, and Gifts of great Avail,
With which the Gods themselves are milder made:
Thereto add Art, e'en Womens witty Trade,
The Art of mighty Words, that Men can charm;
With which in case thou canst him not invade,
Let him feel Hardness of thy heavy Arm:
Who will not stoop with Good, shall be made stoop with Harm.
Some of his Diet do from him withdraw;
For I him find to be too proudly fed:
Give him more Labour, and with streighter Law,
That he with Work may be forwarded.
Let him lodge hard, and lie in strawen Bed,
That may pull down the Courage of his Pride;
And lay upon him, for his greater Dread,
Cold iron Chains, with which let him be ty'd;
And let, whatever he desires, be him deny'd.
When thou hast all this done, then bring me News
Of his Demean: thenceforth not like a Lover,
But like a Rebel stout I will him use.
For I resolve this Siege not to give over,
Till I the Conquest of my Will recover.
So she departed, full of Grief and 'sdain,
Which inly did to great impatience move her.
But the false Maiden shortly turn'd again
Unto the Prison, where her Heart did thrall remain.
There all her subtle Nets she did unfold,
And all the Engins of her Wit display;
In which she meant him wareless to enfold,
And of his Innocence to make her Prey.
So cunningly she wrought her Craft's Assay,
That both her Lady, and her self withall,
And eke the Knight attonce she did betray:
But most the Knight, whom she with guileful Call
Did cast for to allure, into her Trap to fall.
As a bad Nurse, which feigning to receive
In her own Mouth the Food, meant for her Child,
Withholds it to her self, and doth deceive
The infant, so for want of Nourture spoil'd:
E'en so Clarinda her own Dame beguil'd,
And turn'd the Trust, which was in her affy'd,
To feeding of her private Fire, which boil'd
Her inward Breast, and in her Entrails fry'd,
The more that she it sought to cover and to hide.
For coming to this Knight, she Purpose feign'd,
How earnest suit she earst for him had made
Unto her Queen, his Freedom to have gain'd;
But by no means could her thereto persuade;
But that instead thereof, she sternly bade
His Misery to be augmented more,
And many iron Bands on him to lade.
All which nath'less she for his Love forbore:
So praying him t' accept her Service evermore.
And more than that, she promis'd that she would,
In case she might find Favour in his Eye,
Devize how to enlarge him out of Hold.
The Fairy glad to gain his Liberty,
'Gan yield great Thanks for such her Courtesy;
And with fair Words (fit for the Time and Place)
To feed the Humour of her Malady,
Promis'd, if she would free him from that Case,
He would, by all good means he might, deserve such Grace.
So daily he fair Semblant did her shew,
Yet never meant he in his noble Mind,
To his own absent Love to be untrue;
Ne ever did deceitful Clarind' find
In her false Heart, his Bondage to unbind;
But rather how she mote him faster tie.
Therefore unto her Mistress most unkind
She daily told, her Love he did defy;
And him she told, her Dame his Freedom did deny.
Yet thus much Friendship she to him did show,
That his scarce Diet somewhat was amended,
And his Work lessen'd, that his Love mote grow:
Yet to her Dame him still she discommended,
That she with him mote be the more offended.
Thus he long while in Thraldom there remain'd,
Of both beloved well, but little friended;
Until his own true Love his Freedom gain'd,
Which in another Canto will be best contain'd.
[Works, ed. Hughes (1715) 3:754-68]