From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama

N-Town Cycle, Play 42 - The Last Judgment

Hic incipit Dies Judicii, et Jesu descendente cum Michaele et Gabriele Archangelis; et Michael dicit et cetera:

1 MICHAEL Svrgite! All men aryse!
2 Venite ad Judicium!
3 For now is sett þe hy3 justyce
4 And hath assygnyd þe Day of Dom.
5 Rape 3ow redyly to þis grett assyse,
6 Bothe grett and small, all an sum!
7 And of 3oure answere 3ow now avyse,
8 What 3e xal sey whan þat 3e cum,
9 3owre ansuere for to telle.
10 For whan þat God xal 3ow appose,
11 Then is non helpe of no glose.
12 The trewth ful trewlye he wyl tose
13 And send 3ow to hevyn or helle.

14 GABRYELL Bothe pope, prynce, and prysste with crowne,
15 Kynge, and caysere, and knyhtys kene,
16 Rapely 3e renne, 3oure resonys to rowne!
17 For this xal be þe day of tene.
18 Nowther pore ne ryche of grett renowne,
19 Ne all be develys in helle þat bene,
20 From þis day 3ow hyde not mowne;
21 For all 3oure dedys here xal be sene
22 Opynly in syght.
23 Who þat is fowndyn in deedly gylte,
24 He were bettyr to ben hylte!
25 In hendeles helle he xal be spylte.
26 His dedys his deth xal dyght.

Omnes resurgentes subtus terram clamau [erunt], "Haaa, haaa, haaa!" Deinde surgentes dica[n]t, "Haaa," et cetera:

27 Haaa! Cleue asundyr, 3e clowdys of clay,
28 Asundyr 3e breke and lete us pas!
29 Now may oure songe be "weleaway,"
30 þat evyr we synnyd in dedly trespas!

Omnes demones clamant:

31 Harrow and owt! What xal we say?
32 Harraw, we crye, owt and alas!
33 Alas! Harrow! Is þis þat day
34 To endles peyne þat vs must pas?
35 Alas, harrow, and owt, we crye!

Omnes anime resurgentes dicant et cetera:

36 A, mercy, Lorde, for oure mysdede,
37 And lett þi mercy sprynge and sprede!
38 But, alas, we byden in drede--
39 It is to late to aske mercye.

40 DEUS Venite, benedicti, my bretheryn all,
41 Patris mei 3e childeryn dere!
42 Come hedyr to me, to myn hy3 hall,
43 All þo myn suterys and servauntys [were]!
44 All þo fowle wyrmys from 3ow falle.
45 With my ryght hand I blysse 3ow here.
46 My blyssynge burnyschith 3ow as bryght as berall;
47 As crystall clene it clensyth 3ow clere,
48 All fylth from 3ow fade.
49 Petyr, to hevyn 3atys þu wende and goo;
50 þe lokkys þu losyn and hem vndo.
51 My blyssyd childeryn þu brynge me to,
52 Here hertys for to glade.

53 PETRUS The 3atys of hevyn I opyn þis tyde.
54 Now welcome, dere bretheryn, to hevyn, iwys!
55 Com on and sytt on Goddys ryght syde
56 Where myrthe and melody nevyr may mys.
57 OMNES SALUATI On kne we crepe, we gon, we glyde
58 To wurchepp oure Lorde, þat mercyfful is.
59 For thorwe his woundys, þat be so wyde,
60 He hath brought us to his blys.
61 Holy Lorde, we wurchepp þe!
62 DEUS Welcome 3e be in hevyn to sitt!
63 Welcum, fro me xul 3e nevyr flitt,
64 So sekyr of blys 3e xul be 3itt;
65 To myrth and joye welcum 3e be.

66 ANIME DAMPNANDUM Ha! Ha! Mercy! Mercy, we crye and crave!
67 A, mercy, Lorde, for oure mysdede!
68 A, mercy, mercy! We rubbe, we rave!
69 A, help us, good Lord, in þis nede.
70 DEUS How wolde 3e wrecchis any mercy haue?
71 Why aske 3e mercy now in þis nede?
72 What haue 3e wrought 3oure sowle to saue?
73 To whom haue 3e don any mercyful dede,
74 Mercy for to wynne?

75 PRIMUS DIABOLUS Mercy? Nay, nay, they xul haue wrake!
76 And þat on here forehed wyttnes I take.
77 For þer is wretyn with letteris blake
78 Opynly all here synne.

79 DEUS To hungry and thrusty þat askyd in my name
80 Mete and drynke wolde 3e 3eve non;
81 Of nakyd men had 3e no shame;
82 3e wold nott vesyte men in no preson;
83 3e had no peté on seke nor lame--
84 Dede of mercy wold 3e nevyr don.
85 Vnherborwed men 3e servyd þe same;
86 To bery the deed pore man wold 3e not gon.
87 These dedys doth 3ow spylle!
88 For 3oure love was I rent on rode,
89 And for 3oure sake I shed my blode.
90 Whan I was so mercyfull and so gode,
91 Why haue 3e wrought a3ens my wylle?

92 SECUNDUS DIABOLUS I fynde here wretyn in þin forheed
93 þu wore so stowte and sett in pryde
94 þu woldyst nott 3eve a pore man breed,
95 But from þi dore þu woldyst hym chyde.
96 TERCIUS DIABOLUS And in þi face here do I rede
97 þat if a thrysty man com any tyde,
98 For thrust þow he xulde be deed,
99 Drynk from hym þu woldyst evyr hyde.
100 On covetyse was all thy thought.
101 PRIMUS DIABOLUS In wratth þi neybore to bakbyte,
102 Them for to hangere was þi delyte.
103 þu were evyr redy them to endyte.
104 On þe seke man rewyst þu nought.

105 SECUNDUS DIABOLUS Evyrmor on envye was all þi mende:
106 þ[u] woldyst nevyr vesyte no presoner;
107 To all þi neyborys þu were vnkende;
108 þu woldyst nevyr helpe man in daunger.

109 TERCIUS DIABOLUS The synne of slauth þi sowle xal shende!
110 Masse nore mateynes woldyst þu non here,
111 To bery þe deed man þu woldyst not wende.
112 þerfore þu xalt to endles fere.
113 To slowth þu were ful prest.

114 PRIMUS DIABOLUS Thou haddyst rejoyse in glotonye,
115 In dronkeshepp and in rebawdye!
116 Vnherborwyd with velonye
117 þu puttyst from here rest.

118 SECUNDUS DIABOLUS Sybile Sclutte, þu ssalte sewe,
119 All 3oure lyff was leccherous lay.
120 To all 3oure neyborys 3e wore a shrewe,
121 All 3oure plesauns was leccherous play.
122 Goddys men 3e lovyd but fewe;
123 Nakyd men and febyl of array
124 3e wolde nott socowre with a lytel drewe,
125 Nott with a thred, þe soth to say,
126 Whan they askyd in Godys name.
127 OMNES DAMPNANDI A, mercy, Lord, mekyl of myght,
128 We aske þi mercy and not þi ryght;
129 Not after oure dede so us quyth.
130 We haue synnyd. We be to blame.

131 DEUS [The manuscript breaks off here.]

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Proper Citation: NeCastro, Gerard. N-Town Cycle, Play 42 - The Last Judgment. From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama. http://www.umm.maine.edu/faculty/necastro/drama. Date Visited.