From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama

N-Town Cycle, Play 39 - The Ascension of Christ and the Selection of Matthias as the Twelfth Disciple

Hic incipit Ascencio Domini nostri, cum Maria, et vndecim discipulis, et duobus angelis sedentibus in albis; et Jesus dicit discipulis suis et cetera:

1 JESUS Pax vobis. Amonge 3ow pes,
2 Bothe love, and reste, and charyté.
3 Amonge all vertues lete it not ses,
4 For amonge all vertues prynspal his he.

5 3e be to blame I may wel preve,
6 For Iwyl vse to 3ow wordys pleyn
7 þat 3e be so hard of herte to beleve
8 þat from deth to lyve I am resyn ageyn.
9 Nottwithstondynge as 3e knowe, serteyn,
10 To 3ow viij sythys aperyd haue I
11 Be soundry tymes, the trewth to seyn;
12 And þis is þe ix tyme, sothly,
13 Evyn and no mo.
14 But now sum mete
15 Anon doth gete;
16 For I wyl ete
17 With 3ow and goo.

18 My dyscyplis, here what I sey,
19 And to my wourdys 3evyth attencyon.
20 From Jerusalem loke 3e go not awey,
21 But mekely abydyth my fadyres promiscyon,
22 Off whiche be my mowth 3e haue had informacyon
23 Whyll bodyly with 3ow I was dwellynge.
24 For Johan, sothly, for mannys saluacyon
25 Onlye in watyr was me baptysynge.
26 But I 3ow behete
27 Withinne fewe days þat 3e
28 In þe Holy Goost xul baptyzid be.
29 Therfore rysyth up and folwyht me
30 Onto þe Mownte of Olyvete.

31 JACOBUS MAJOR O Lord, vowchesaff vs for to telle
32 Iff þu wylt now, withowte more delay,
33 Restoryn þe kyngdam of Israell
34 And 3eve vs þe joye, Lord, þat lestyth ay.
35 JESUS Serys, þe tymes and þe monthis knowe 3e ne may
36 Whiche my fadyr hath put in his owyn power.
37 But 3e xul take within short day
38 Of þe Holy Goost þe vertu cler,
39 Thorwe whiche xul 3e
40 In Jerusalem and in Jury,
41 And moreovyr also in Samary,
42 And to þe worldys ende vttyrly,
43 My wyttnes only be.

44 Lovyth no wrath nor no wronge,
45 But levyth in charyté with mylde stevyn,
46 With myrthe, and melody, and aungell-songe.
47 Now I stey streyte from 3ow to hevyn.

Hic ascendit ab oculis eorum, et in celo cantent et cetera.

48 ANGELUS Returnyth ageyn to 3oure loggynge,
49 To Jerusalem, for he wyl thus,
50 His promys mekely þer abydynge;
51 For dowteles þis forseyd Jesus,
52 Whiche from 3ow is take
53 In a clowde, as 3e hym seyn
54 Steyng vp, so xal comyn ageyn.
55 Of al mankynde, þis is serteyn,
56 Jugement xal he make.

57 [PETRUS] O 3e bretheryn, attendyth to me,
58 And takyth good hede what I xal seyn:
59 It behovyth þe scripture fulfyllyd to be
60 þat of Dauyd was seyd with wourdys pleyn
61 Of Judas, whiche was þe gyde, serteyn,
62 Of hem þat Cryst slow cruelly;
63 Which aftyr from deth ros vp ageyn,
64 And hath abedyn in erthe ful days fourty.
65 And aftyr all this,
66 Before oure eye
67 In a bryght skye
68 He dede up stye
69 To hevyn blys.

70 This seyd Judas was amongys us
71 Noumbryd apostyll, and had lych dygnyté.
72 But whan he betrayd oure Lord Jesus,
73 He hynge hymself vpon a tre;
74 In whos sted muste nedys ordeyned be
75 Another, oure noumbre for to restore,
76 On of þo whiche, as weel knowe we,
77 Han be conuersaunt here longe before
78 In oure company;
79 Whiche xal wyttnes
80 Berun expresse
81 To more and lesse
82 Of Crystys resurrexion stedfastly.

Hic statuent duos, Joseph Justum et Mathiam, et cetera.

83 O sovereyn Lorde, whiche of every man
84 The hertys dost knowe most inwardly,
85 With all þe lowlyness we may or kan,
86 To þe we prey ful benygnely
87 That þu vowchesaff thorwe þi mercy
88 Vs hym to shewe whiche in þis cas
89 þu lykyst to chesyn effectuously
90 To ocapye þe lot of Judas plas.

Hic dabunt sortes, et cadet super Mathiam, et cetera.

91 Now gramercy, Lord!
92 And to fulfylle
93 þin holy wylle,
94 As it is skylle,
95 We all accorde.

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Proper Citation: NeCastro, Gerard. The Ascension of Christ and the Selection of Matthias as the Twelfth Disciple, N-Town Cycle, Play 39 - The Ascension of Christ and the Selection of Matthia. From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama. Date Visited.