SEARCH RECORDS
SEARCH MSS
PRINTED BOOKS
INSCRIPTIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHY
GLOSSARY
DIMEV HOME
The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
DIMEV 4080
IMEV 2574
NIMEV 2574
O thoughtful heart plunged in distress
John Lydgate, Life of Our Lady — 5936 lines in rhyme royal; the ‘Magnificat’ in 8-line stanzas (ababbcbc)
Author(s): John Lydgate
Title(s): Life of Our Lady
Subjects: Virgin Mary, life of
Versification: — seven-line, eight-line — ababbcc, ababbcbc



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 39 (SC 6919), f. 3v-109
First Lines:
O thougfull hert plunged in distresse
With slombir of slouth this longe winters night
Out of the slepe of mortall hevinesse
A wake May and loke vpon the light…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntes shede and socoure be
To kepe and save from all aduersite
Attributed Title: This boke was compiled by Dann Johne Lydgate monke of Bury at þe exitacon and sterynge of oure worshipfull prince kyng henry the Vth in the honure & wirship of the birthe of þe most glorious maide wyf & modir of oure lord Ihesu Crist Chaptrid and markid aftyr this table that foloweth (f. 1r)
2.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 59 (SC 6943), ff. 136-182
First Lines:
O fflowre of vertue ful long kepyt in close
ffull many a yeare with wholesom leaues swete
onely by grace vppon the stolke arose
out of Iesse springing fro the roote…
Last Lines:
…To save al tho fro eternall shame
That haue ful faithe & hole trust in thy name
Note: Begins imperfectly; between ff. 177 and 178 leaves wanting. Followed by ‘Comparatio turturis et columbae’ on ff. 180-181v and Lenvoy on ff. 181v-182. On f. 181v: ‘Here endeth the booke of the Life of our Lady made by Dan John Lidegate monke of Bury at thinstaunce of the most Christen kyng Henry the fift´ . On f. 182: ‘Here endeth the Life off our Lady’
Attributed Title: Here beginneth a booke of our blessed Lady Maiden Moder & Wife of our Lord Ihesu Compiled by Daune Johan Lidgate Monke of Bery at the exhortation of our most excellent Prince King Henry ye fifte. In honour glory and Worship of her Natiuite and of her most holy liuinge and conuersation from her birthe to her Purification (f. 135)
3.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 75 (SC 2253), ff. 1-83v
First Lines:
The which flour preserued man fro deþe
Un to þe vertu who so luste take hede…
Last Lines:
…To þi seruantes scheld & socour be
To kepe & safe from al aduersite
Note: Begins 1.71
4.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 120 (SC 27643), ff. 1-94v
First Lines:
[O] Thoughtfull herte plunged in distresse
With slombre of slouthe this longe wyntres nyght…
Last Lines:
…Up on this day euere from þere to þere
Whith tapres fresshe & bright torches shene
Note: Ends 6.454
5.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 596 (SC 2376), ff. 86-175v
First Lines:
O Thoughtfull herte plunged in distresse
With slumbre of slouthe this longe wynters nyght…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntis shelde and socour be
To kepe and saue from all aduersitee
Attributed Author: In a later hand ‘Compilid by Iohn lydgate monke of berry on whos soull god have mersy a men’
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the prologe of the birthe of oure ladi (f. 86); Explicit vitam beate Marie virginis (at the end)
6.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Hatton 73 (SC 4119), ff. 10-115v
First Lines:
O Thouhtful herte plunged in distresse
With slumbre of slouthe this long wynter nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntis scholde and soccour be
To kepe and save from all aduersite
Attributed Author: This book was compiled by Iohn Lydgate Monke of Bury at the excitacioun of kyng Harry the Vthe. In honour of our Lady Diuided and chaptred after this table (f. 117)
7.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 140 (SC 14634), ff. 1-108v
First Lines:
O thouȝtful herte plunged in distresse
With slombir of slowþe þis longe winteris nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To þi seruauntis shilde & socour be
To kepe & saue from al aduersite
Attributed Author: This boke was compiled by Ion Lidgate monk of Bury at þe excitacoun & steringe of oure worshipful Prince kyng herry þe fifþe in þe worshipe honour & glorie of þe birthe of þe moste glorious mayde wif & modir of oure lorde Ihesu crist chapitrid I markid after this table (f. 1)
8.Source: Oxford, Corpus Christi College 237, ff. 158-240
First Lines:
O thowyghtfull herte plungyd in destresse
With slombyr & slouthe this longe wyntyrsnyght…
Last Lines:
…To thi servauntys shylde and socour bee
To kepe and saue from all aduersite
Attributed Title: Be Gyning þe proloug of þe lyfe of Owre lady (f. 158); Explicit vite Marie (f. 240)
9.Source: Oxford, St John’s College 56, ff. 1-76
First Lines:
O thoughtfull hert Plownge[d] in dystresse
With slombre of slowthe this lon[ ] wyntrs nyght…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntes scheelde and socoure be
To kepe and saue from all aduersyte Amen
Note: Followed by the table of chapters; 5936 lines in rhyme royal
Attributed Author: Lydgate
Attributed Title: Here be gynnethe the prolog of the berthe of oure lady (f. 1); This book was compyled be Iohn Lydegate monke of Bury at the excitacioun and stering of oure worschepfull Prince king henry þe fyfte in þe honour glorie and worschyp of þe Birthe of þe mooste glorious mayde wyff and moder of oure lord Ihesu Cryst (f. 71)
10.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Kk.1.3, ff. 1-94
First Lines:
…trowith to determyne
[ ] by prescience devyne
[ ] preservith men from deth
[ ] who so list take hede…
Last Lines:
…To whom this ffeest is in speciall
Dedicate both of more and las…
Note: Begins 1.75; last five lines, top f. 94, illegible
Attributed Title: Here endith the boke of the Natiuite of our lady and of the birth of our Lorde Ihesu Criste (f. 94)
11.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Mm.6.5, ff. 1-142
First Lines:
O Thouȝtful hert plungide in distres
Þat slomber of slouþ þe longe winter nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To þi seruauntis schelde & socour be
To kepe & saue fro al aduersite
Attributed Title: Explicit vita beate Marie virginis et matris dei (f. 142)
12.Source: Cambridge UK, Gonville & Caius College 230/116, ff. 54 (p. 113)-55 (p. 116)v
First Lines:
Wyth laude and prys my soule magnifieth
Eternal lord bothe oon two and thre…
Last Lines:
…He hath maad mercy oure kynde to restore
And of alle his werkis to be souereyne
Note: ‘Magnificat’ (10 x 8, ababbcbc) only
Attributed Author: Lydgate (f. 55v/p. 116)
Attributed Title: Magnificat (f. 54/p. 113)
13.Source: Cambridge UK, Gonville & Caius College 804/808, fragment 1, ff. 1ra-1v
First Lines:
…Vpon the cros duryng his passioun
Eke in iiij manere who so can take hede
Crist in his chosen bi good inspeccioun…
Last Lines:
…Thurgh his herte playnli as y fynde
On caluarie him periched with a sper
That blood…
Note: parts of six stanzas RR: lines 4.77-87, 105-115 only; formerly 3844.8
Editions:
Reimer, Stephen R. “A Fragment of John Lydgate’s Life of Our Lady in Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge.” English Language Notes 33/2 (1995): 1-15.
14.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.21 (601), ff. 85-156v
First Lines:
o thoughtfull hert plongyd in hygh dystresse
With slombre of slowth thys long wynterys nyght
Out of the slepe of mortall leuynesse
Awake anon and loke opon the lyght…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntes shelde and socour be
To kepe and saue from all aduersyte
Attributed Author: Explicit Purificatio & finis libri compilati per Iohanem Lydegate Monachi de Bury (f. 156v); John Lydgate (added by a sixteenth-century hand, f. 85)
Attributed Title: Explicit Purificatio & finis libri compilati per Iohanem Lydegate Monachi de Bury (f. 156v); De Concilio Trinitatis (added by later hand, f. 85)
15.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.22 (602), ff. 3-109v
First Lines:
o thoȝtful herte plunged in distresse
With slombre of slouth þis long wynteris nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To þi servauntes schelde & socour be
To kepe and saue from al aduersite
Attributed Author: This booke was compilid bi Iohn lidgate monke of Bury… (f. 1)
Attributed Title: This booke was compilid bi Iohn lidgate monke of Bury at the excitacion & sterynge of oure worschipful prince kyng herry þe fifthe in the honour glorie & worschipe of the borthe of þe moste glorious maide wife & modir of oure lorde ihesu criste (f. 1)
16.Source: London, British Library Addit. 19252, ff. 4-104
First Lines:
…And from þe stok of Ioachym and Anne
This holy floure had hir originall…
Last Lines:
…To þi seruauntys sheld and socour be
To kepe and saue from all aduersite
Note: Begins 1.113: two leaves missing at beginning of text; includes table of contents ff. 1v-3, with heading, ‘Here bigynneth a table compendiously rehersyng the notable matere writen in this booke suyng after this noumbrarie’.
17.Source: London, British Library Addit. 19452, ff. 2-89v
First Lines:
…ffor this of Iacob is the faire sterre
Tha [sic] vndir wawes neuere doth declyne
Whos cours is not vndir the ecliptik lyne
But eueriliche of beaute may be sene…
Last Lines:
…And who so with clennesse with þe turtil fleeth
As I toforne haue made mencioun
And like a dowe afore his perelle seeth
Of dethe to eschewe the persecucioun…
Note: Begins 1.31; ends 6.277.
Attributed Title: This booke was compilid By Iohn lidgate monk of Bury at the excitacioun & steringe of oure worschipful Prince kyng herri the fifthe in the honour glorie & worschipe of the birthe of the most glorious maide wife and modre of our lorde Ihesu criste chapitrid & markid after this wise (f. 1)
18.Source: London, British Library Addit. 29729, ff. 122-123
First Lines:
…Magnificat anima mea domini
Miche lawde & prays my sowle magnifieth
the eternalle lorde bothe one two and thre…
Last Lines:
…he hathe made mercy owr kynde to restore
Of alle his werkes to be soverayne
Note: Magnificat only; at end in rubric by scribe, ‘AMEN / FINIS Iohn Stowe’ (f. 123)
19.Source: London, British Library Arundel 168, ff. 66ra-85rb
First Lines:
…To pray and rede that was euer hire lyfe
Of hert waker bi devocioun…
Last Lines:
…withoute abode a voice he herd þan
ffrome a lofte to þe chambyr downe…
Note: Begins 1.414; ends 3.1208 at the foot of f. 85rb after only 4 lines of a rhyme royal stanza; f. 85v is blank.
20.Source: London, British Library Cotton App. VIII, ff. 2-108
First Lines:
Thoughtfull herte plunged in distresse
With slumbre of slouthe þis longe wynters nyght…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntes sheld and socour be
To kepe and saue fro all aduersite
Attributed Author: Iohn Lydyat monke of Bury St. Edmonds (f. 1)
Attributed Title: On þe Praise of þe Virgin Mary (f. 1)
21.Source: London, British Library Harley 629, ff. 4v-97
First Lines:
O thouȝtful herte plunged in distresse
with slombir of slouthe this longe wynters nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To thi seruantis shelde and socour bee
To kepe and saue from al aduersite
Note: Includes Table of Contents, ff. 2-4; scribe writes rubric ‘Amen’ after last word (f. 97); full-page miniature of the birth of Mary (f. 1v).
Attributed Title: This book was compilid by John lidgate monke of Bury at the excitacion and steryng of oure worshipful Prince kyng herry the fifthe in the honoure glorie and worshippe of the birthe of the most glorious maide wife and moder of oure lord ihesu criste chapitrid and markyd after this table (f. 2, by scribe at heading on table of contents)
Editions:
Tame, Charles Edward, ed. The Life of our Lady. Part I. London, Washbourne, 1879: 1.1-2.1095.
22.Source: London, British Library Harley 1304, ff. 4-99
First Lines:
o thoughtfull herte plunged in distresse
With slombre of slouþe þe longe wynters night…
Last Lines:
…To thi seruauntis shilde and socour bee
To kepe and saue from all aduersitee
Note: Preceded by table of contents also written by same scribe (ff. 1-3v).
Attributed Title: tHis booke was compiled bi John lidgate monke of Bury at the excitacion and steringe of oure worshipfull Prynce kynge harry the fiffthe in the nonoure glorye and worshippe of the birthe of the moste glorious mayde wife and moder of oure lorde ihesu Criste Chapitred and marked after this table (f. 1, by scribe in rubric at beginning of table of contents); Explicit vita beate marie (f. 99, rubric by scribe after last line)
23.Source: London, British Library Harley 2382, ff. 1-74v
First Lines:
t [ ]
wel [ ]
to euery [ ]
sad with all th [ ]
a loke amysse of here eyen [fayre]
So close of sight was this debonayre
And in psalmes and holy prophecye…
Last Lines:
…to thi seruantes sheld & socour be
to kepe & saue from all aduersite
Note: Begins imperfectly at 1.427 due to damage at beginning of this paper manuscript; part of top of first leaf also torn away, with loss of text; the current second leaf numbered in [medieval?] roman foliation as viii.
Attributed Title: Explicit quartus liber de sancta Maria (f. 74v, below end of text, written by scribe)
24.Source: London, British Library Harley 3862, ff. 1-107
First Lines:
O Thoughtful hert plonged in gret dystresse
With slombir of slowth thys longe wynters nyght…
Last Lines:
…To þe seruantis sheold and socor be
To kepe and saue hem from all aduerversite [sic]
Note: No table of contents in this MS; last word mis-written with ‘u’ plus abbreviation mark for ‘er’ followed by ‘v’ plus abbreviation mark for ‘er’; the first only crossed out by a fine pen or pencil line probably not by scribe; followed on same line by ‘Amen’ by scribe.
25.Source: London, British Library Harley 3952, ff. 2-105
First Lines:
O thouȝtfull herte plungid in distresse
wiþ sclombre of slouþe þis longe wynters nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…Bytwene Ane oxe and a sely asse
And blessede quene þis feeste of Candil[ ]
[ ]s shelde & socoure be
[ ]lle aduersite
Note: Preceded by table of contents by same scribe, ff. 1-2; last several (paper) folios damaged, with loss of text.
Attributed Title: The Birthe of Christ (f. 1, added by a later hand), crossed through with replacement title, Lydgate’s Life of the Virgin Mary (f. 1, added by a different later hand)
26.Source: London, British Library Harley 4011, ff. 23-119
First Lines:
O thoughfull [sic] hert plunged in distresse
With slombre of slouth this longe wintris night…
Last Lines:
…To thi seruauntes sheld and socoure be
To kepe and save vs from all aduersite
Note: Table of contents by same scribe precedes this (ff. 21-22v); ‘Amen’ on same line at end of last line, by scribe.
Attributed Author: Explicit Iohanne Lydgade monke off Bury / Etto Gobeth / Quod w. Grauell (rubric by scribe in scroll below last line, f. 119)
Attributed Title: This Boke was compyled by Iohn lydgate monke of Bury at the excitacioun and steryng of oure worshipfull prince kinge Harry the fifth in the honore glorie and worshippe of the birth of the moste glorious maiden wiffe and moder of oure lorde Ihesu Criste Chapitrid and markyd after this tabulle (at beginning of table of contents, f. 21r)
27.Source: London, British Library Harley 4260, ff. 2-108
First Lines:
O thouȝtful herte plunged in distresse
With slombre of slouthe þis longe wintris night…
Last Lines:
…To þi seruantis schelde & socour be
o kepe & saue from al aduersite
Note: Ends, ‘Amen’ and then followed in same hand the phrase ‘Grace growith aftir gouernaunce’ (f. 108); followed by Latin verse prayer for protection of the king, written twice and with pentrial beginnings of further copies, added in 16th century and signed ‘quod Clerk J’ (f. 108).
28.Source: London, British Library Harley 5272, ff. 1-98v
First Lines:
…And specyally to almes dede
Hire hand was euer redy in nede
And full she was of compassion
To rewe on all tho þat felt wo or smerte…
Last Lines:
…To thi seruauntes scheelde and socoure be
To kepe and save from all aduersite
Note: Begins inperfectly at 1.419.
Attributed Title: Here endith þe life of oure lady Quod Johannes fforster (f. 98v)
29.Source: London, British Library Sloane 297, ff. 88-88v
First Lines:
…delite
[ ]he blisse
[ ]th to kysse
[ ]ly chere iocunde
[ ]rte nekke enbrace
[ ]tendre armes rounde
[ ]enes full on þi face
[ ]s eyen fulfilled of al grace
[ ]loke to theward enclyne
[ ]forth his chekys lay to thyne
[ ]with his fyngers mouth & eyen twoche
[ ]smale pawmes on þi cheke layes
[ ]yong face be twene þi pappes couche
[ ]d hold hym still with al his besy payn
[ ]nd gripe hem fast with his handes twayne…
Last Lines:
…Send vs this manna of souerayn hestes hele
to oure comfort and oure consolacion
and lete vs grace in thi mercy fele
for oure refute and oure refeccion
and in this vale of confusion…
Note: A fragment: one [torn] leaf from London, British Library Harley 2382; text is 3.1671-1741.
30.Source: London, British Library Sloane 1785, ff. 14-29v
First Lines:
…And in the boke of Elizabeth
That titelid is of hir avisiones
I fynde how this Maide of nazareth
Seid euery day seuene orisones
That called ben hir peticions
With humble hert this yonge blisfull Maide
fful lowly knelynge euen thus she seyd
O Blisfull lorde that knowithe the entent
Of euery hert in thin eternaly Sight
Yeue me grace the firste comoundement
To fulfill as it is skele and ryght…
Last Lines:
…To none astate is kendely syttynge
Of duete to speke in speciall
But to the astate only of a kynge
So at [sic] no wyght but of the Stoke Reiall
By statute old this colowre vse shall
ffor by old tyme ye shulde noman sene
In purpell cledde butte other kynge or quene…
Note: Begins 1.434; ends 1.795; note handwriting is still very small and formal here, soon changes to larger and less formal by 15v); written by a different hand from Speculum Vitae; originally two booklets.
31.Source: London, Lambeth Palace Library 344, ff. 14v-99v
First Lines:
O thow heuyfull hert plunged yn distresse
Wyth slombre of slowthe thys longe wenter nught…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntis shelde and socoure be
To kepe and saue from all aduersite.
Amen.
Attributed Author: Thys boke was compyled by Ihon lydegate Monke of Burye at excytacyon of kyng harry the vthe yn honowre of owre lady… (ff. 13-13v; table of chapters follows)
32.Source: London, Society of Antiquaries 134, ff. 1ra-30ra
First Lines:
…Therfore quod pees now wole y not fayne
To doo myn office ryȝte to modefye…
Last Lines:
…To þy seruauntis schilde & socoure be
To kepe & saue from all aduersite Amen
Note: Begins 2.222
Attributed Title: Explicit vita beate Marie (f. 30ra)
33.Source: Durham, Durham University Library Cosin V.ii.16, ff. 5-90v
First Lines:
O thoughtfull herte plongede in high distresse
With slombre of slouthe this long wynters nyght…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruaunteȝ shelde and socoure be
To kepe and save from all aduersyte
Attributed Author: This booke was compilede by John Lidgate Monke of Bury… (f. 3)
Attributed Title: This booke was compilede by John Lidgate Monke of Bury At the excitacion and stryvyng of our worshipfull prince kyng harry the fifth. In the honour glory and worship of the byrthe of the moste glorious maide wife and modir of our lorde Ihesu criste (f. 3)
Editions:
Lauritis, Joseph Aloysius, ed. A Critical Edition ofJohn Lydgate’s Life of Our Lady. Duquesne Studies, Philological Series 2. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University, 1961; orig. ed. diss. University Pennsylvania 1951 (Ralph Albert Klinefelter); 1952 (Vernon F. Gallagher), 1958 (Lauritis), in 3 vols.
34.Source: Edinburgh, National Library of Scotland, Advocates’ 1.1.6 [Bannatyne MS], pp. 22-24
First Lines:
With laud and prayis my saule hes magnifeid
The eternall lord both ane two & thre…
Last Lines:
…He hes maid mercy mankynd to restoir
Off all his werkes to be souerane
Note: Magnificat only, 10 eight-line stanzas, ababbcbc, with Latin headings for stanzas 2-10 from Luke 1.46-55.
Attributed Title: þe song of the virgin mary callit magnificat anima mea dominum (p. 22)
Editions:
Murdoch, James Barclay. The Bannatyne Manuscript. 4 vols. in 11 parts, paged continuously. Hunterian Club 16, 32, 40, 46, 50, 55-56, 64-67 Glasgow: Anderson, 1873-1896: 64-7.
Ritchie, W. Tod, ed. The Bannatyne Manuscript. 4 parts in 4 vols. Scottish Text Society 3rd ser. 5 (1928); n.s. 22 (1928); n.s. 23 (1930); n.s. 26 (1934) Edinburgh and London: Blackwood, 1928-34; ed. by Ritchie et al: 2.60-3.
35.Source: Edinburgh, National Library of Scotland, Advocates’ 1.1.6 [Bannatyne MS], pp. 25-26
First Lines:
With lawd and prayiss my saule hes magnifeid
The eternall god both ane two and thre…
Last Lines:
…He hes maid mercy mankynd to restoir
Off all his werkis to hav be soverene
Note: Magnificat only; second occurrence in MS.
Attributed Title: The song of the virgin Mary (f. 25); magnificat anima mea dominum [in left margin] (f. 25)
36.Source: Edinburgh, National Library of Scotland, Advocates’ 19.3.1, ff. 176-210
First Lines:
…Than Ianus bifrous in cold Ienuare
with forsty berd enturth in þe yere…
Last Lines:
…Of the turtul & of þe dowues kynd
Rede þes versus & ye schall hit fynd
Note: Books 4-6
Facsimiles:
Hardman, Phillipa. The Heege Manuscript: A Facsimile of National Library of Scotland MS Advocates 19.3.1. Leeds Texts and Monographs, n.s. 16. Leeds: School of English, 2000.
Editions:
Turnbull, William Barclay David Donald, ed. The Visions of Tundale. Edinburgh: T.G. Stevenson, 1843: 85-137 (Bks. 4-6).
37.Source: Glasgow, Glasgow University Library Hunterian 232 (U.3.5), ff. 1-104v
First Lines:
O Thowhtful hert plunged in distress
With slombre of slowthe þis long winters nyght…
Last Lines:
…And how this feest fyrst tooke his name
So as I can to ȝow I wole attane…
Note: Ends imperfectly at end of volume, end of quire; catchword ‘Sumtyme whan’ bottom f. 104v.Ends 6.308
38.Source: Longleat, Marquess of Bath MS 15, f. 2
Note: Ends 6.128
39.Source: Manchester, Chetham’s Library 6709 [Mun. A.4.104], ff. 6-158
First Lines:
O Thotfull harte plun[ ] dystresse
With slombre of slowth the longe wynters nyghte
Offte of thy sleepe of mortall hevyng
Awake Anon and loke vppon the lyght…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntes shelde & socowre be
Be kepe & save from all aduersyte
Note: A copy of Lydgate, John, The lyf of our lady, Caxton, [1484] .
Attributed Author: [ ]his Boke was compyled be dan Iohn lydgate Monke of Burye [ ] the hondis of Sir William Cotson [ ] monke… (f. 1)
Attributed Title: Explicit vita Beate Marie quod Willelmus Cotson (f. 5v, at end of table of contents); [ ]ff of owre lady (f. 1)
40.Source: Chicago, IL, University of Chicago Library 566 [olim Cockerell], f. 6
Note: Begins 1.173
41.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library 281, ff. 4-114v
First Lines:
O Thoughtfull herte planted in distresse
With slombre of slouþe þis long wyntris night…
Last Lines:
…To thi servauntes shelde and socoure be
To kepe and save from alle aduersite
Note: Preceded by contents on ff. 1-4
Attributed Author: This Boke was compiled by Iohn Lydgate Monke of Bury at the excitacion and steringe of the Worshipfulle Prince Kynge henre the fyfthe In the honoure glorie and Worship of þe birthe of the moste glorious mayde Wyffe and moder of Oure lorde Ihesu Criste (f. 1)
Attributed Title: Here begynnith the Prologe of the Natiuite of oure ladye (f. 4)
Editions:
Shailor, Barbara A. The Medieval Book: Catalogue of an Exhibition at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1988: 88 (ff. 5v-6 only).
42.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library 660 [olim Mostyn Hall?], ff. 1-76v
First Lines:
…Which floure preserueth man frome dethe
Vnto the vertue who so liste take hede
That in a gardyne amyddes of nazareth…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntys shelde and socoure be
To kepe and save hem from Aduersite
Note: Begins imperfectly
Attributed Title: Thus endeth the Purificacioun of oure lady / To trewe cristen men she is mene for mercy (f. 76v)
43.Source: San Marino, CA, Henry Huntington Library HM 115 [olim Hoe], ff. 2v-109v
First Lines:
O thouȝtfull hert plunged in distresse
With slombre of slouthe þis long wynterys nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…That she fortune made debonayre
ffor to susteyne þe honour of her toun…
Note: Medieval text ends imperfectly due to loss of folios at end; supplied by modern transcription on ff. 110-112; medieval text includes Latin glosses
44.Source: San Marino, CA, Henry Huntington Library HM 144 [olim Huth 7], ff. 11-20
First Lines:
…Who is bounde & feteryd in presonne
Thynkyth longe aftyr delyueraunce…
Last Lines:
…She alle commyttyth vnto goddis wylle
And as he ordeyneth redy to fulfylle
Note: Book II lines 1-504 only; here treated as complete work.
Attributed Title: How Merci & Pees Ryghtwisnes & Trouthe disputyd for the Redempciun of Mankynde (f. 11)
45.Source: San Marino, CA, Henry Huntington Library HM 144 [olim Huth 7], ff. 77v-79
Note: Book II lines 981-1060 only; inserted between lines 724-5 of the Siege of Jerusalem (1613).
46.Source: Urbana, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 85 [olim Gloddaeth; post Mostyn Hall 257; sold 1920 to Quaritch], ff. 1-85
Transcription:
…fful prudently awaytynge at the ȝate
That for no slouthe sche come nouȝt to late
In figure eke the Chaundelabre of golde
That sumtyme bare vii laumpes schene…
Note: Begins at Book 3, line 118 (of London, British Library Harley 629 version)
47.Source: Rome, English College AVCAU MS 1405, f. 2
Note: Begins 2.365
48.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales MS 21242C [olim Mostyn Hall 85 (Christie’s, 24 Oct. 1974, lot 1479, sold to Quaritch)], f. 2-102v
First Lines:
O thoughtfull herte plunged in distresse
With slombre & slouthe this longe wynters nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To thy seruauntis schilde & socoure be
To kepe and saue frome al aduersite
Note: Hamer (1995) lists as unidentified, missing or destroyed.
49.Source: Cambridge MA, Harvard University, Houghton Library, Lat. 394, ff. 29-31
First Lines:
Somtyme when Rome þoruȝ his renoun
Was moost flouryng in power & in myȝt
Euery fyfthe ȝeere by reuolucioun
In ffebruarie vppon þe firste nyȝt…
Last Lines:
…To þi servantsis shilde & socour be
To kepe & saue from al aduersite
Note: Unfoliated: begins first back flyleaf [29]. Extract from Lydgate’s Life of Our Lady, 22 stanzas rhyme royal, Book VI, lines 309-462; see Lauritis (1961). Ends ‘Amen’; all written by the hand of the Leeds bookseller Thomas Wilson (fl. 1760, see below), adding to a medieval MS; copied from Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 140 (SC 14634).
50.Source: Cambridge MA, Harvard University, Houghton Library, Lat. 394, ff. 31-31v
First Lines:
And eke my Maister Chaucers now is gone
The nobil rethor Poete of bretayne
þat worthi was the laurer to have
Of Poetrie and þe Palme atteyne…
Last Lines:
…Praieþ for him þat lieth now in his Cheste
To God aboue to geue his soule gode reste
Note: Unfoliated: begins third back flyleaf [31]. Extract from Lydgate’s Life of Our Lady, 22 stanzas rhyme royal, Book II, lines 1628-1655, the final two stanzas of the poem (through line 1669) omitted in the Harvard MS; see Lauritis (1961). Ends ‘Amen’; all written by the hand of the Leeds bookseller Thomas Wilson (fl. 1760, see below), adding to a medieval MS; copied from Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 140 (SC 14634). Note at end, third flyleaf at back, verso (fol. [31v], unfoliated): ‘By this it appears that Lydgate wrote the abovesaid MS, containing 87 Chapters curiously writen upone Vellum, painted & Gilt, about the 3ear 1400, when Chaucer died. Penes [in the possession of] T[homas] W[ilson], which I gave to Rich[ard] Rawlinson L.L.D., FRS. & FSA. [=Doctor of Letters, Fellow of the Royal Society and Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries], 1754’. Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 140 (SC 14634) transferred to Rawlinson by TW; purchased previously by TW from the library of Rev. Joseph Briggs (fl. 1675), M.A., Vicar of Kirkbarton, Yorkshire and author of devotional tracts; owned in the fifteenth century by N. Mawnsell; see SC 14634.
Attributed Title: Iohn Lydgate’s commendation of Chaucer, from the aforesaid Manuscript, Chap. 34 (third back flyleaf, f. [31v])



Print Witnesses:
1.Source: STC 17023. Lydgate, John, The lyf of our lady, Caxton, [1484] , sigs. a.i-M.ivv
First Lines:
O Thoughtful herte plungyd in distresse
With slombre of slouth this long wynters nyght…
Last Lines:
…Blesse vs marie the most holy virgyne
That we regne in heuen with the ordres nyne
Note: Oxford, Bodleian shelfmark: S. Selden d.10 (formerly Auct. QQ.1.10); Camb. Univ. Lib. shelfmark Inc. 3.J.1.1 (3515); in CUL copy (imperf.), ends ‘To thy seruauntes shelde and socour be / To kepe and saue from al aduersite’ (sig. m.ivv)
Attributed Author: dan John lydgate monke of burye (f. 2 preceding a.i, sig. m.4v)
Attributed Title: This book was compyled by dan Iohn lydgate monke of burye at the excitacion and styryng of the noble and victoryous prynce Kyng harry the fyfthe in thonoure glorye & reuerence of the byrthe of our moste blessyd lady mayde wyf and moder of our lord Ihesu cryst chapytred as foloweth by this table (first of two folios preceding sig. a.i); Here endeth the book of the lyf of our lady made y dan John lydgate monke of bury at thynstaunce of the moste crysten kynge kyng harry the fyfth (sig. m.4v)
Editions:
Tame, Charles Edward, ed. The Life of our Lady. Part I. London, Washbourne, 1879: 2. (Chapters 1-23, source uncertain).
2.Source: STC 17024. Lydgate, John, The lyf of our lady, Caxton, [1484]
Note: Only fragments survive, possibly cancelled leaves of Lydgate, John, The lyf of our lady, Caxton, [1484] .
3.Source: STC 17025. Lydgate, John, The lyf of our lady, R. Redman, 1531 , sigs. a.i-Hh.5v
Attributed Title: Here endeth the lyfe of our lady (sig. Hh.5v)