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The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
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DIMEV 2383
IMEV 1423
NIMEV 1423
If Saint Pauls day be fair and clear
Prognostics for weather from St. Paul’s Day — four couplets
Note: See Denham (1846), 24, 25; Hazlitt (1882), 230; Northall (1892), 444-5; Tilley (1950) S 55; Latin version only in Oxford, Lincoln College Lat. 129, f. 112v; Latin version edt. Wright and Halliwell-Phillipps (1845), 2.10.
Subjects: prognostications; utilitarian instructions; translations; weather
Versification: — two-line — aa



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Douce 128 (SC 21702), f. 278v
First Lines:
If the day of Saint Paule be cleere
Note: Formerly (in Robbins and Cutler (1965)) listed separately as 1426.1.
Attributed Title: The Saying of Erra Pater to the Husbandman (f. 278v)
Editions:
Hearne, Thomas, ed. Roberti de Avesbury Historia. Oxford: Sheldonian, 1720: 266.
Brydges, Sir Samuel Egerton, and Joseph Haslewood. The British Bibliographer. 4 vols. London: T. Bersley, vol. 1: 1810; vols. 2, 3: 1812; vol. 4: 1814: 81.
2.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales Porkington 10, f. 2
Note: Preceded by Latin version, and changing to prose after initial couplet.
Attributed Title: The Saying of Erra Pater to the Husbandman (f. 278v)
Editions:
Kurvinen, Auvo. “MS. Porkington 10. Description with Extracts.” Neuphilologische Mitteilungen 54 (1953): 33-67: 40.
3.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales Mostyn Welsh 129, p. 266
Note: Preceded by Latin version.
Editions:
Mooney, Linne R. “Practical Didactic Works in Middle English.” Diss. Toronto, 1981: 359-60.
4.Source: Edinburgh, National Library of Scotland Deposit 314/18 (deposited by Marquis of Sutherland, Dunrobin Castle), Calendar of Fearn Abbey, f. 1
First Lines:
Giff sanct paullis day be fair and clere
Than salbe [fyll?] ane happie ȝeir…
Last Lines:
…and giff þe cloudis make darke þe skye
Boith [ ] and foull that ȝeir sall deie
Note: Written two lines of verse per line of MS, at bottom of calendar page for January, by a hand of the fifteenth century.
Editions:
Historical Manuscripts Commission, Second Report, with Appendix. (1874): 180.
Bad Key: Banks1939: 2.140.
Robbins, Rossell Hope, ed. Secular Lyrics of the XIV and XV Centuries. 2nd ed. Oxford: Clarendon, 1955: 63.
Oliver, Raymond. Poems Without Names: The English Lyric 1200-1500. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 1970: 114.
Luria, Maxwell Sidney, and Richard L. Hoffman, eds. Middle English Lyrics. New York: Norton, 1974: 110.
5.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales Mostyn Welsh 129, p. 266
Note: Preceded by Latin version.
Editions:
Mooney, Linne R. “Practical Didactic Works in Middle English.” Diss. Toronto, 1981: 359-60.
6.Source: Dublin, Trinity College, Dublin 537, f. 75v
First Lines:
Yf þe daye of saint pauls be cleare
then shall betyde an happie yeare…
Last Lines:
…and if the cloudes make darcke þe skye
bothe neate and foule þat yeare shall dye
Note: On a scrap of paper bound into the MS facing the copy on f. 76.
7.Source: Dublin, Trinity College, Dublin 537, f. 76
First Lines:
Yf that þe daye of saint paule be cleare
then shal betytde an happy yeare…
Last Lines:
…and if the cloudes make darke the skye
bothe neate and foule that yeare shall dye
Note: Followed by thunder prognostications in another hand; first hand then writes, ‘Inprinted at london in breadstreate at the neterende by Thomas East, the 28 daye of aprill 1568’.
Attributed Title: a litell rule of sait paules day; other wise called þe conversion of saint paule (f. 76); The saying of erra pater to þe husbandman (f. 76, seventeenth-century hand)
8.Source: Hanover, New Hampshire, Dartmouth College Codex MS 3183, f. 3
Transcription:
Yf S Paul daye be fear and clear
Then shal be tide An happe year
And yf yt chanc to snew o rayn
The[n] shalbe dear all kind of grayn
And yf the cloudes mak dark the
Note: ‘The verse is written in an Elizabethan-style script, upside down, in the lower margin of folio 3. This folio is not a flyleaf; it is the third of five folios in the first quire, a quire which was probably not original to the manuscript, as it contains a table of contents in a sixteenth-century hand. (Also, folio 6, which is the first folio of the Brut text proper, is damaged in a way consistent with rough wear on the outermost folio, so folio 6 was likely the first folio of the Brut MS before what is now the first quire was bound with it.)’ (our thanks to Elizabeth Bryan for this witness).
9.Source: London, British Library Sloane 2584, ff. 36v-37
Transcription:
ȝif seynt poules day be fayre and clere
it is tokyn of good tyme of þe ȝere
ȝif it be smowe or reyne, it is tokyn of derth
ȝif it be wynde it is signe of batailes
ȝif it be cloudes, al bestis schal perche
Note: Partly prosified.
Attributed Title: A good rewle of þe conuersyoun of seynt paule (f. 36v)