Excerpt: ... saintly youth, the spotless lamb of Christ, Or some black wether of St Satan's fold. What, in the precincts of the chapel-yard, Among the knightly brasses of the graves, And by the cold Hic Jacets of the dead!' And Merlin answered careless of her charge, 'A sober man is Percivale and pure; But once in life was flustered with new wine, ...
Excerpt: ... saintly youth, the spotless lamb of Christ, Or some black wether of St Satan's fold. What, in the precincts of the chapel-yard, Among the knightly brasses of the graves, And by the cold Hic Jacets of the dead!' And Merlin answered careless of her charge, 'A sober man is Percivale and pure; But once in life was flustered with new wine, Then paced for coolness in the chapel-yard; Where one of Satan's shepherdesses caught And meant to stamp him with her master's mark; And that he sinned is not believable; For, look upon his face!-but if he sinned, The sin that practice burns into the blood, And not the one dark hour which brings remorse, Will brand us, after, of whose fold we be: Or else were he, the holy king, whose hymns Are chanted in the minster, worse than all. But is your spleen frothed out, or have ye more?' And Vivien answered frowning yet in wrath: 'O ay; what say ye to Sir Lancelot, friend Traitor or true? that commerce with the Queen, I ask you, is it clamoured by the child, Or whispered in the corner? do ye know it?' To which he answered sadly, 'Yea, I know it. Sir Lancelot went ambassador, at first, To fetch her, and she watched him from her walls. A rumour runs, she took him for the King, So fixt her fancy on him: let them be. But have ye no one word of loyal praise For Arthur, blameless King and stainless man?' She answered with a low and chuckling laugh: 'Man! is he man at all, who knows and winks? Sees what his fair bride is and does, and winks? By which the good King means to blind himself, And blinds himself and all the Table Round To all the foulness that they work. Myself Could call him (were it not for womanhood) The pretty, popular cause such manhood earns, Could call him the main cause of all their crime; Yea, were he not crowned King, coward, ..."
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