From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama

The Chester Cycle Play XXII (22) - Pentecost

THE FISHEMONGERS PLAYE
Incipit Pagina Vicesima Prima de Electione Matthei
et de Emissione Spiritus Sancti qualiter apostoli
fecerunt simbolum apostolicum, viz. 'Credo in Deum Patrem' etc.

Et primo inter apostolos incipiat

001 PETRUS (ad condiscipulos) My deare brethren everychone,
002 you knowe well, both all and one,
003 howe our lord ys from us gonne
004 to blysse that lasteth aye.
005 Comforte nowe maye wee have nonne
006 save his beheste to trust upon.
007 Therfore leeve we in this wonne
008 that never one wend awaye.

009 Lenge we styffe in our prayer,
010 for well I wott, withowt were,
011 he will send us a counselour,
012 his Ghoost, as hee beheight.
013 Therefore lenge we right here,
014 this faythfull fellowshippe in fere,
015 tyll our lord, as he can us lere,
016 send us of heaven light.

Tunc exurgens Petrus in medio fratrum et dicat:

017 My deare brethren fayer and free,
018 Holye Scripture, leeve yee mee,
019 fullye must fullfilled bee
020 that Davyd sayd beforne.
021 All of the Holye Ghooste had hee.
022 Towchinge Judas [wytten] yee
023 that sould our mayster for money
024 and nowe ys cleane forlorne.

025 Amonge us nombred that wretch was,
026 the fayth to preach in eych place;
027 and nowe his hyre fullye hee hasse,
028 for hanged himselfe hasse hee.
029 His bodye bursten for his tresspasse,
030 soule dampned as a man withowt grace.
031 Therfore, as the psalter mynd mase,
032 fulfylled nowe must bee:

Fiat habitatio eius deserta et non [sit] qui habitet in eo Episco accipiat alter'

033 Therefore, men that nowe binne here
034 and fellowes that aye with us were
035 with Jesus Christe, our mayster dere,
036 in yearth livinge was--
037 that yee that seene his powere,
038 his myracles manye in good manere,
039 dyinge, rysinge, both in fere,
040 maye best nowe beare witnesse.

041 Mattheus I read here be one,
042 and Josephe that aye with us hath gonne,
043 for whom we caste to lottes anonne
044 and buske us all to praye

045 whether of them yt ys Godes will
046 this same office to fullfill.

Tunc respondent omnes (all speake together):

047 Wee assenten us theretyll,
048 for this ys the beste waye.

Tunc omnes apostoli genuflectent et dicat

049 PETRUS. Thow, lord, that knowest all thinge,
050 eych hart and will of man livinge,
051 shewe us here by some tokeninge
052 whom that we shall take,
053 and whether of theise ys thy likinge
054 in Judas steed that be standinge,
055 thy name to preach to olde and yonge,
056 and whither that thou wilt make.

Tunc Petrus mittet sortem et sors cadet super Mattheum; et dicat

057 PETRUS. This lott ys falne, brethren free,
058 one Matthewe--all men may see.
059 To us therfore I take thee
060 and apostle thee make.

061 MATTHEUS. Yea, honored be God in Trynitie,
062 though I unworthye therto bee
063 that to you have chosen mee;
064 dye wyil I for his sake.

065 ANDREAS. Nowe, Peeter, brother, goe we and praye,
066 for evermore I myne maye
067 my sovereygne howe I hard him saye
068 here in your companye--
069 JACOBUS MAJOR. hee would not leave us by noe waye
070 fatherles children, in good faye,
071 but ryche us sone in better araye
072 with his Ghooste gratiouslye.

073 JOHANNES EVANGELISTA. Yea, brethren, also verament
074 to us bee sayd in good intent
075 in yearth here while he was present
076 and with us could lend--
077 THOMAS. but yf so were that hee ne went,
078 his Ghooste to us should not be sent;
079 and yf hee yood, where wee were lent
080 hitt hee would us send.

081 JACOBUS MINOR. Yea, sweete and likinge was his lore,
082 and well yee wytten that there wore
083 but a little while before,
084 or hee to heaven steede--
085 PHILIPPUS. hee bade wee should not goe awaye
086 from Jerusalem to no countrey
087 but there abyde, soothe to saye,
088 his heste from an highe.

089 BARTHOLOMEUS. Also hee sayd to us eychone
090 that his forgoer, Saynt John,
091 with water baptysed manye one
092 while that hee was here.

093 MATHIAS. But we shall baptyse without boste
094 fullye with the Holye Ghooste
095 through helpe of him that ys moste,
096 sone after, without were.

'Tunc Johannes quidem baptizavit aqua, vos autem baptazimini
Spiritu Sancto non post multos hos dies.'

097 SIMON. Wee mynd theron, lasse and more.
098 Yett some that standen him before

099 asked whither hee should restore
100 that tyme all Israell.

101 THADDEUS. And he answered anonright:
102 'That tyme knowe yee ne might,
103 that in his Fathers will was pight'--
104 for that hee must conseyle.

'Non est vestrum nosse tempora vel momenta quae Pater posuit in sua potestate'

105 MATTHEUS. Yea, brethren, that tyme hee us behight
106 the Holye Ghoost should in us light,
107 that wee might tell to eych wight
108 his deedes all bydeene
109 in Jerusalem and Judee--
110 where in world soever walked wee--
111 and Samarye, that men should see,
112 as after maye be seene.

'Accipietis virtutem supervenientes Spiritus Sancti in vos,
et eritis mihi testes in Jerusalem et in Judea, Samaria et usque ad ultimum terrae.'

113 PETRUS. Kneele we downe upon our knee
114 and to that lord nowe praye wee.
115 Sone I hope that hee will see
116 to his disciples all.

117 ANDREAS. Yea, in his life so taught hee:
118 aske and have with hart free;
119 rightwise boone shall granted bee
120 when men will on him call.

Tunc omnes apostoli genuflectentes cantent 'Veni, creator Spiritus.' Postea dicat

121 JACOBUS MAJOR. Come, Holye Ghoost; come, creatour!
122 Visytt or thoughtes in this store--
123 thou art mans conquerour--
124 and grant us, lord, thy grace!

125 JOHANNES. Thou that art called 'conselor'
126 and send from heaven as savyour,
127 well of life, lenght or langore
128 that prayen here in this place.

129 THOMAS. Hee that in seaven monethes would conseyle
130 grace of thy Ghooste about to deale,
131 as thou promised for mans heale,
132 appeare nowe synce I praye.

133 JACOBUS MINOR. Light our wyttes with thy weale;
134 put life in our thoughtes lele;
135 fulsome thy frendes that binne frayle
136 with vertues lastinge aye.

137 PHILIPPUS. Vanishe our enemyes farre awaye
138 and grant us peace, lord, to our paye,
139 for while thou art our leader aye
140 we may eschewe anoye.

141 BARTHOLOMEUS. Through thy might knowe wee maye
142 the Father of heaven, full in good faye;
143 and yee, his Sonne, all sooth to saye
144 thou art in companye.

145 MATHIAS. Worshipped be thou ever and oo,
146 the Father and the Sonne also.
147 Left thy Ghooste nowe from thee goe
148 and faith that we may fynd.

149 SIMONNDE. That we asken with hart throo--
150 to fulsome us agaynst our foe--
151 grant thy men here, both one and moe,
152 that have thee ever in mynd.

Christ must speake in heaven.
153 LYTTLE GOD. Gloryous Father fayre and free,
154 yee knowe well of your dutye
155 that I have donne your will.
156 They apostles that you have chosen to mee,
157 with grace, wisdome, and prosperitye
158 that you will them fulfill.

Tunc omnes apostoli contemplantes vel orantes
quousque Spiritus missus fuit, Deus dicat:

159 My Sonne beloved, life and dere,
160 your healthfull askinge ever here
161 that you aske ys not to arere.
162 I knowe your cleane intent.
163 With will full lyberall and cleare
164 my Ghooste to them shall appere
165 to make them wyser then the were.
166 That ys my full assent.

167 My Ghoost to yearth shall goe downe
168 with seaven gyftes of renowne,
169 ther to have by devotyon.
170 Confyrine them to be sadd,
171 that they may be ever readye bowne
172 in heaven-blysse to were the crowne,
173 ever to reigne in possession,
174 there to be merye and gladd.

175 My patryarkes and propheetes here
176 that through your fayth to mee were deare,
177 angelles and archangelles cleare,
178 all in my blysse wonnynge,
179 yee wotten well withowten were
180 howe I have mended in good manere
181 man that was lorne through Lucifere
182 and through his owne lykinge.

183 My Sonne I send downe from my see
184 into a virgyn fayre and free
185 and manhood tooke, as lyked mee,
186 one man to have mercye,
187 that righteousnes might saved bee.
188 Synce man had loste his lybertye,
189 I made man.in on degree;
190 his bale behovedd to bye.

191 Nowe man fullye have I bought
192 and out of bale to blysse brought.
193 His kynd also, as me good thought,
194 ys mixte within my godhead.
195 Thus man that [I] thus made of nought,
196 that Sathanas through synne hadd sought,
197 by this waye I have so wrought
198 non good in hell binne lead.

199 But while I was in that degree
200 in yearth wonynge, as man should bee,
201 chosen I have a good meanye
202 one which I must have mynd.
203 Nowe they have made there mone to mee
204 and prayed speciallye, as I see,
205 which I must suffice with hart free
206 or elles I were unkynd.

207 Throughout the world they shall gonne,
208 my deedes to preach rnanye one.
209 Yett steadfastnes in them ys nonne
210 to suffer for me anoye.
211 Fletchinge yett they binne ichone.
212 But when my Ghoost ys them upon,
213 then shall they after be styffe as stonne
214 my deedes to certyfie.

215 Dreade of death ne no distres
216 shall lett them of stydfastnes.
217 Such love in them, and such goodness,
218 my sprytte shall ever inspire
219 that to speake and expresse
220 all languages that ever yett was
221 they shall have cunnynge, more and lesse,
222 through force of heavenly fyre.

223 Alsoe they shall have full powere
224 to baptyze men in water clere
225 that beleeven, in good manere,
226 to have full mynd on mee.
227 And on all such, withowten were,
228 the Holye Ghooste at theire prayere
229 shall light on them, that they may lere
230 in fayth steadfast to bee.

231 Nowe will I send anon in hye
232 to my brethren in companye
233 my Ghooste, to gadd them gratiouslye--
234 for that ys there willinge--
235 in lycknes of fyre freelye,
236 that they may styffned be therbye,
237 my workes to preach more steadfastlye,
238 and therby more connynge.

Tunc Deus emittet Spiritum Sanctum in spetie ignis,
et in mittendo cantent duo angeli antiphonam
'Accipite Spiritum Sanctum; quorum remiseritis peccata,
remittentur eis' etc. Et cantando projecient ignem super apostolos.
Finitoque Angelus in caelo dicat.

239 ANGELUS. Rest well, all that binne here.
240 My lord you greetys, and his Ghooste dere.
241 Hee byddes you dread noe bost nor bere
242 of Jewes farre ne nere;
243 but looke yee goe anon in hye
244 into all the world by and by,
245 and also preach the fayth meekelye
246 and his workes so deare.

247 THE SECOND ANGELL. And through this Ghooste that I you bringe
248 yee shall have understandinge
249 of every lond speakinge,
250 whatsoever the saye;
251 and this world that ys flytchinge
252 yee shall despyce ever all thinge,
253 and heaven at your endinge
254 yee shall have to your paye.

255 PETRUS. A, mercye, lord, full of might!
256 Both I feele and see in sight
257 the Holye Ghoost ys on us light;
258 [of] fyre this house full ys.

259 ANDREAS. Nowe have wee that was us beheight,
260 for full of love my hart ys pight
261 and wyser then ys any wight
262 meethinke I am, iwys.

263 JACOBUS MAJOR. Yea, lord, blessed moste thou bee,
264 for both I feele and eke I see
265 the Holye Ghoost ys light on mee.
266 Thus quytte I am my meede.

267 JOHANNES. For such love, by my lewtee,
268 with this fyer in my hart can flee
269 that death to doe for my mayster free
270 I have no manner of dread.

271 THOMAS. And I thanke thee, both God and man,
272 for synce this fyer light me upon
273 of all languages well I can,
274 and speake them at my will.

275 JACOBUS MINOR. I, before that was but a foone,
276 am waxen as wise as Salamon.
277 There ys no scyence but I can therone
278 and cunnynge to fullfill.

279 PHILIPPUS. And I that never could speake thinge
280 save Ebrewe as I learned yonge,
281 nowe I can speake at my likinge
282 all languages, both lowe and bye.

283 BARTHOLOMEUS. And soe styffe I am of beleevinge
284 that I doubt neyther prynce ne kynge
285 my maysters myracles for to mynge
286 and for his love to dye.

287 MATHIAS. A, blessed be my mayster deare!
288 So lyttle while can us lere.
289 All languages that ever were
290 upon my tonge binne light.

291 SIMON. My beleefe ys nowe so clere,
292 and love in harte so prynted lere,
293 to moove my mynd in no mannere
294 there ys no man hath might.

295 TADDEUS. Yea, sythen this fyre came from high
296 I am waxen so wondrous sleigh
297 that all languages farre and nigh
298 my tonge will speake nowe aright.

299 MATTHEUS. Nowe sythen my lord to heaven steegh
300 and send his Ghooste as hee beheight,
301 to all distresses nowe am I drest
302 and dye for the love of God almight.

303 PETRUS. Nowe, brethren, I read us all in fere,
304 make wee the creede in good mannere
305 of my lordes deedes deare
306 that gladed us hath todaye;
307 and I will first beginne here,
308 synce Christ betooke me his power,
309 the lewd hereafter that we maye lere,
310 to further them yn the faye.

Petrus incipiat 'Credo in Deum, Patrem omnipotentem, creatorum caeli et terrae,'

311 I beleeve in God omnipotent
312 that made heaven and yearth and fyrmament
313 with steadfast hart and true intent,
314 and hee ys my comford.


315 ANDREAS.

'et in Jesum Christum, Filium eius, unicum dominum nostrum,'

And I beleeve, where I be lent,
316 in Jesu, his Sonne, from heaven sent,
317 verey Cryste, that us hath kent
318 and ys our elders lord.


319 JACOBUS MAJOR.

'qui conceptus est de Spiritu Sancto, natus ex Maria virgine,'

I beleeve, without bost,
320 in Jesus Christe of mightes most,
321 conceyved through the Holy Ghooste
322 and borne was of Marye.


323 JOHANNES.

'passus sub Pontio Pilato, crusifixus, mortuus et sepultus.'

And I beleeve, as I can see,
324 that under Pilate suifred hee,
325 scourged and nayled one roode-tree;
326 and buryed was his fayre bodye.


327 THOMAS.

'Descendit ad inferna; tertia die resurrexit a mortuis,'

And I beleeve, and sooth can tell,
328 that hee ghoostly went to hell,
329 delyvered his that there did dwell,
330 and rose the third daye.


331 JACOBUS MINOR.

'ascendit ad caelos, sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris omnipotentis,'

And I beleeve fully this,
332 that he stayed up to heaven-blysse
333 and on his Fathers right hand ys,
334 to raygne for ever and aye.


335 PHILIPPUS.

'inde venturus est judicare vivos et mortuos'

And I beleeve, with hart steadfast,
336 that hee will come at the laste
337 and deeme mankynd as he hath caste,
338 both the quycke and the dead.


339 BARTHOLOMEUS.

'Credo m Spintum Sanctum,'

And my beleeffe shall be moste
340 in vertue of the Holye Ghooste;
341 and through his helpe, without boste,
342 my lyffe I thinke to lead.


343 MATHIAS.

'sanctam ecclesiam cathohcam, sanctorum communionem,'

And I beleeve, through Godes grace,
344 such beleeffe as Holy Church hasse--
345 that Godes bodye granted us was
346 to use in forme of bread.


347 SIMON.

'remissionem peccatorum,'

And I beleeve, with devotyon,
348 of synne to have remission
349 through Christes blood and Passion,
350 and heaven when I am dead.

351 TADDEUS.

'carnis resurrectionem,'

And I beleeve, as all wee mon,
352 in the generall resurrection
353 of ych bodye, when Christe ys [bowne]
354 to deeme both good and evell.


355 MATTHEUS.

'et vitam aeternam.'

And I beleve, as all wee maye,
356 everlastinge life, after my daye,
357 in heaven for to have ever and aye,
358 and so overcome the devyll.

359 PETRUS. Nowe, brethren, I read all wee
360 goe ychone to dyvers cuntree
361 and preach to shire and to cyttee
362 the fayth, as Christe us beede.

363 ANDREAS. Yee, leefe brother, kysse nowe wee
364 yche one another before wee dye,
365 for Godes will must fullfilled bee,
366 and that ys nowe great neede.

Tunc venient duo alienigene, quorum dicat

367 PRIMUS ALIENIGENA. A, fellowe, fellowe, for Godes pittie,
368 are not theise men of Gallilee?
369 Our language the can as well as wee,
370 as ever eate I bread!

371 SECUNDUS ALIENIGENA. Well I wotte, by my lewtee,
372 that within theise dayes three
373 one of them could not speake with mee
374 for to have binne dead.

375 PRIMUS ALIENIGENA. Of all languages that binne hereby
376 that come to Mesopotamye,
377 Capadocie and Jurye,
378 the jangle without weene--
379 of the lie of Pontus, and Asye,
380 Fryzeland and Pamphilye,
381 Egipt, right into Lybie
382 that ys byesyde Syrene.

383 SECUNDUS ALIENIGENA. Yea, also men of Arabye
384 and of Greece that ys thereby
385 herden them prayse full tenderlye
386 God of his great grace;
387 and we herden them, witterlye,
388 prayse God faste, both thou and I.
389 Fellowe, goe we therfore and espye
390 howe goes this wondrous case.

391 Finis

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Proper Citation: NeCastro, Gerard. The Chester Cycle Play XXII (22) - Pentecost. From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama. http://www.umm.maine.edu/faculty/necastro/drama. Date Visited.