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The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
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DIMEV 2267
IMEV 1356.5
NIMEV Dunbar
I seek about this world unstable
William Dunbar, ‘Of the changes of life’ — four 5-line stanzas
Author(s): William Dunbar
Title(s): ‘Of the changes of life’
Subjects: transitoriness, of life; mutability
Versification: — five-line — aabba



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ll.5.10, ff. 8v-9
First Lines:
I Seik about þis warld vnstabell
To seile and sentances conveneabill…
Last Lines:
…nixt eftir joy ay cumes sorow
So is þis world and ay hes ben
Attributed Author: Quod dumbar (f. 9)
2.Source: Cambridge UK, Magdalene College Pepys 2553, pp. 5-6
First Lines:
I seik about þis varld vnstabille
To fynd ane sentence conuenabill…
Last Lines:
…Nixtt efter Ioy aye cumis sorrow
Sa Is this varld and ay hes bein
Attributed Author: Quod dumbar
Editions:
Craigie, William Alexander. The Maitland Folio Manuscript, Containing Poems by Sir Richard Maitland, Dunbar, Douglas, Henryson, and others. 2 vols. Scottish Text Society n.s. 7 (1919), 20 (1927); Edinburgh and London: Blackwood, 1919, 1927: 1.4, 376.
Pinkerton, John, ed. Ancient Scottish Poems Never Before in Print. 2 vols. London and Edinburgh, 1786: 1.124.
Sibbald, John. Chronicle of Scottish Poetry…. 4 vols. Edinburgh and London, 1802: 2.13.
Laing, David. The Poems of William Dunbar. 2 vols. Edinburgh: Laing and Forbes, 1834; Supplement, 1865: 1.203.
Paterson, James. The Works of William Dunbar. Edinburgh: Stillie, 1863: 63-4.
MacKenzie, William Mackay. The Poems of William Dunbar. Edinburgh, 1932: 140-1.
3.Source: Cambridge UK, Magdalene College Pepys 2553, p. 315
Editions:
Craigie, William Alexander. The Maitland Folio Manuscript, Containing Poems by Sir Richard Maitland, Dunbar, Douglas, Henryson, and others. 2 vols. Scottish Text Society n.s. 7 (1919), 20 (1927); Edinburgh and London: Blackwood, 1919, 1927: 1.4, 376.
Small, John, Ae. James George Mackay, George Powell McNeill, and Walter Gregor, eds. The Poems of William Dunbar. 5 pts. Scottish Text Society 2, 4, 16, 21, 29. Edinburgh, 1884-93: 2.232.
Schipper, Jakob. The Poems of William Dunbar. Vienna: Kaiserliche Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1894: 283-4.
Schipper, Jakob, ed. The Poems of William Dunbar. 4 vols. Denkschriften der kaiserlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Philosophische-Historische Klasse 40/2; 40/4; 41/4; 42/4. Vienna, 1892-93: 3.85-6.
Baildon, Henry Bellyse. The Poems of William Dunbar. Cambridge: University Press, 1907: 145-6.
Kinsley, James. William Dunbar, Poems. Oxford: Clarendon, 1958; repr. 1979: 60.