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King Richard Coeur de Lion
At noon "a laver" the waytes blew;
Þe messangeres naught ne newe
Richaryds law ne hys custome.
Sade the kyng: "Frendes ye are welcome!"
To hem he was cumpanyable,
Þey were set a syde table.
Salt was set on but, no bred,
Ne watyr, ne wyn, whyt ne red.
The Sarazynes sate, and gunne to stare,
And thought: "Allas, how schal we fare?"
King Richard was set on des,
With dukes and earlys prowd in pres;
Fro kechene com þe fyrste cours,
WiÞ pypes, and trumpes, and tabours.
[At noon a fanfare the waits blew;
The messengers nothing knew
of Richard's law or his customs.
Said the king: "Friends, you are welcome!"
To them he was companionable,
They were set aside a table.
Salt was set on it, but no bread,
No water, no wine, white or red.
The Saracens sat and began to stare,
And thought: "Alas, how shall we fare?"
King Richard was set on a dias,
With proud dukes and earls in threes;
From the kitchen came the first course,
With pipes and trumpets, and tabors.]
A metrical romance about King Richard I of England based on a lost Anglo-Norman romance dating from c. 1230-1250. The name of the Middle English author is unknown, but he is thought to have been from south-east England, and he may also have written the romances
Of Arthour and of Merlin
'Pypes' probably refers to shawms or bagpipes.
Kurath, H. (1960: 670)
Weber, H. (1860: 134)
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