SEARCH RECORDS
SEARCH MSS
PRINTED BOOKS
INSCRIPTIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHY
GLOSSARY
DIMEV HOME
The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
DIMEV 3937
IMEV 2464
NIMEV 2464
O how wholesome and glad is the memory
John Lydgate, ‘Testament’, in five sections—sections 1, 3, and 5 in 8-line stanzas (ababbcbc); sections 2 and 4 in rhyme royal
Author(s): John Lydgate
Title(s): ‘Testament’
Subjects: prayers, to Christ; Christ, prayers to
Versification: — eight-line, seven-line — ababbcbc, ababbcc



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Laud misc. 683 (SC 798), ff. 88-105
First Lines:
O how holsom and glad is the memorye
of crist Ihesu surmountyng al swetnesse…
Last Lines:
…Come on my frend my brother moost Enteer
ffor the I offryd my blood in sacryfyse
Attributed Author: …damp Iohn lydgatys testament monk of Bury… (f. 88); Explicit Testamentum Iohannis lydgate (f. 105); al the langage that heere be forn ys wretyn was maad and compiled By damp Iohn lydgate monk of seynt Edmundys Bury on whos sowle now Ihesu haue mercy Amen Amen (f. 105)
Attributed Title: HEre begynneth the prologe of damp Iohn lydgatys testament monk of Bury On whos sowle I beseche Ihesu haue mercy (f. 88); Explicit Testamentum Iohannis lydgate (f. 105)
2.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson C.86 (SC 11951), ff. 62v-64v
First Lines:
Beholde man lyfte vp þy eye and se
What mortall peyn I sufferd for þy trespace…
Last Lines:
…Come on my frend my brother most entere
ffor þe I offerd my blode in sacrifice
Note: Part 5 only.
3.Source: Cambridge UK, Jesus College Q.G.8 (56), ff. 1-19v
First Lines:
O How holsom and glad is þe memorye
Of cryst Ihesu surmounting all Wetnesse…
Last Lines:
…Come on my frende my Brother moost entere
ffor the I offred my bloode in sacrifise
4.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.19 (599), ff. 162-169
First Lines:
[T]he yeres past of my tendyr youthe
Of my best age seryd the grenesse
Lust apallyd the experyence ys bouthe
The vnrewly youthe ys starkyd with rewdenesse…
Last Lines:
…In the Remembraunce of crystis passioun
Thys lytyll dyte thys compilacioun
Note: Parts 2, 3, and 4 only.
Facsimiles:
Fletcher, Bradford Y. “Introduction.” Manuscript Trinity R.3.19. A Facsimile. Norman, OK: Pilgrim, 1987.
5.Source: London, British Library Addit. 29729, ff. 179v-183
First Lines:
O howe holsum and glad is the memorie
of crist Ihesu surmountyng all swetnesse…
Last Lines:
…and call it my last testament
with Ihesu mercy knelyng on my kne
Note: Part 1 only.
Attributed Author: Iohn lydgatt (f. 179v)
Attributed Title: This folowynge is þe prologe of Iohn lydgattes testament whiche I fownd in Mstr stantons boke (f. 179v); Explicit prologus of Iohn lidgats testament (f. 183)
6.Source: London, British Library Addit. 34193, ff. 223v-228v
First Lines:
How holsum and glad is the memory
Off Criste Ihesu surmountynge all swetenesse…
Last Lines:
…Wenynge this season amonge there merthes all
Shuld neuer discression nor appall
Note: Stanzas 1-44 only.
7.Source: London, British Library Arundel 285, f. 170v
Note: Part 5 only.
Editions:
Bennett, Jack Arthur Walter, ed. Devotional Pieces in Verse and Prose from Ms. Arundel 285 and Ms. Harleian 6919. Scottish Text Society 3rd ser. 23. Edinburgh: Blackwood, 1955: 270-4.
8.Source: London, British Library Harley 218, ff. 52v-72
First Lines:
O howe holsom and glad is the memorie
Of cryst Ihesu surmountyng all swetnesse…
Last Lines:
…Come on my fiend my brother most entere
ffor the I offered my blood in sacryfice
Attributed Author: damp Iohn Lidgates testament monk of Bury (f. 52v); Explicit testamentum Iohannis Lydgate (f. 72)
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the prologe of damp Iohn Lidgates testament monk of Bury (f. 52v); Explicit testamentum Iohannis Lydgate (f. 72)
Editions:
MacCracken, Henry Noble, ed. John Lydgate: The Minor Poems, Vol. I: Religious Poems. EETS e.s. 107 (1911; repr. 1961): 329-62.
9.Source: London, British Library Harley 2251, ff. 40-42
First Lines:
BEholde o man lift vp thy eye and se
What mortal peynes I suffre for thy trespas…
Last Lines:
…Com on my brother my friende most entiere
ffor the I offred my bloode in sacrifice
Note: Part 5 only.
10.Source: London, British Library Harley 2255, f. 47-66v
First Lines:
O how holsom and glad is the memorye
Of crist ihu surmountyng al swetnesse…
Last Lines:
…Com on my freend my brothir moost enteer
ffor the I offryd my blood in Sacrifise
Attributed Title: Testamentum Iohn Lydgate nobil poete (f. 47, in rubric); Explicit testamentum (f. 66v, in rubric)
Editions:
Halliwell-Phillipps, James Orchard, ed. A Selection from the Minor Poems of Don John Lydgate. Percy Society 2. London: T. Richard, 1840: 232-64.
11.Source: London, British Library Harley 2382, ff. 87v-96v; 108-108v; 128v-129v
First Lines:
O how glad & holsom is the memorie
Of Crist Ihesu surmountyng al swetnesse…
Last Lines:
…com on my frende my brother most entere
for the I offrid my blode in sacrifise
Note: In 5 sections, sections 1, 3, and 5 in 8-line stanzas (ababbcbc); sections 2 and 4 in rhyme royal; after end, to right of explicit, ‘Deo gracias Jesus Maria’ written by scribe.
Attributed Title: The Testament of Dan Iohn (f. 87v, in upper margin); Testamentum Lydgardis (f. 88, in upper margin, and thereafter as RT, all by scribe of text); Explicit Testamentum Johannis Lydgate de Bery at end (f. 129v, in lower margin, written by scribe)
Editions:
Beutner, Hans, ed. Lydgate’s Testament. München: C. Wolf & Sohn, 1914: 8-48.
12.Source: London, British Library Royal 18 D.II, ff. 1va-5rb
First Lines:
The yeres passede of my tender youthe
Of my freshe age fearede the grenenes
Lust appalede thexperience is couthe
The unweldy ioyntes starked withe rudenesse…
Last Lines:
…Thy place is bylded aboue þe sterres clere
None erthly palaes wrought in so stately wyse
Come on my frende my brothere moste entere
ffor the I offrede my blode in sacrifce
Note: Lacks Part 1. Closes with the Latin rubric “Et sic est finis sit laus et gloria trinis” (f. 5)
Attributed Author: Here begynnethe the testamente of John lydgate monke of berry whiche he made hym selfe by his lyfe dayes. (in rubric, f. 1v); Thus endethe testamente of John lydgate Monke of Bery on whose sowle Jhesu haue mercy (f. 5)
Attributed Title: Here begynnethe the testamente of John lydgate monke of berry whiche he made hym selfe by his lyfe dayes. (in rubric, f. 1v); Thus endethe testamente of John lydgate Monke of Bery on whose sowle Jhesu haue mercy (f. 5)
Facsimiles:
Digital Facsimile of British Library MS Royal 18 D II. 2015; http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts/FullDisplay.aspx?ref=Royal_MS_18_D_II.
13.Source: San Marino, CA, Henry Huntington Library HM 140 [olim Phillipps 8299], ff. 91-92v
First Lines:
O howe holsom and glad is the memory
Of crist Ihesu surmountyng all swetnes…
Last Lines:
…O Ihesu gracious benigne and debonaire
Haue mercy on all þat bow to þe þeire knee
Note: Stanzas 1-14 only, in 8-line stanzas, ababbcbc.
Attributed Title: Testamentum (f. 91)
14.Source: Leiden, Leiden University Library Vossius Germ. Gall. Q.9, ff. 117-135v



Inscriptions:
1.Source: Long Melford, Suffolk, Church of the Holy Trinity, Clopton Chapel, wall paintings above chapel altar
First Lines:
Now in the name of oure lord ihesu
of ryght hole herte & in our best entent…
Last Lines:
…testymonyall of our redemcion
[ ]
[ ]
graunte or we deye shrifte hosell and repentance
Note: Stanzas 29-30, 27, 56-60, 63, 65-66, 68-70, 74-79.
Editions:
Waller, J. G. “Observations On Recent Discoveries of Mural Paintings in Churches, Particularly those of Battel, Sussex.” Journal of the British Archaelogical Association 2 (1847): 141-55: 187-8.
Parker, Sir William. The History of Long Melford. London: Wyman, 1873: 128.
Conder, E. Lauriston. The Church of the Holy Trinity, Long Melford, Suffolk. London: Dryden Press, 1887: 54.
Trapp, J. B. “Verses by Lydgate at Long Melford.” Review of English Studies n.s. 6 (1955): 1-11: 7-11.



Print Witnesses:
1.Source: STC 17035. Lydgate, John, Here begynneth the testament of John Lydgate, R. Pynson, [1520?] , sigs. a.1-c.3v
First Lines:
[T]He yeres passed of my tender youthe
Of my fresshe age feared the grenenesse…
Last Lines:
…Come on my frende my brother moost entere
For the I offred my blode insacrifyce.
Note: Nineteenth-century transcript is London, Victoria and Albert Museum, National Art Library Dyce MS 33 (in Dyce 25.F.29). At the end: ‘¶Emprinted at Lo[n]don in fletestrete by Richard / Pynson: printer vnto the kinges noble grace. / With priuylege of our souerayne lorde the kyng.’ (c.3v)
Attributed Title: ¶Here begynneth the testame[n]t of John / Lydgate monke of Berry: which / he made hymselfe by his / lyfe dayes (a.1); ¶Thus endeth the testament of John Lydgate / monke of Bery on whose soule Iesu haue mercy. (a.1); testa. of J. L. (RT)