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Down from heaven, from heaven so high, Of angels there came a great companye With mirth, and joy, and great solemnitye; They sang terli terlow, So merryly the shepherds their pipes can blow. Such songs were taken home by the audience and sung for a season, as a popular tune is now caught from the stage and sung on the streets; and at times the whole audience would very likely join in the chorus.

Of this Chaucer, at any rate, had little doubt, as he writes: In th' olde dayes of the King Arthour, Of which that Britons speken greet honour, Al was this land fulfild of fayerye; The elf-queen, with hir joly companye, Daunced ful ofte in many a grene med.

And no man rydethe before him of his companye; but alle aftre him. And no man dar not come nyghe the chariot by a bowe draught, but tho lordes only, that ben about him: and alle the hoost cometh fayrely aftre him, in gret multitude.

And whan thei wil have ony companye of man, than thei drawen hem towardes the londes marchynge next to hem: and than thei have loves, that usen hem; and thei duellen with hem an 8 dayes or 10; and thanne gon hom azen. In that lond thei have a Queen, that governethe alle that lond: and alle thei ben obeyssant to hire. And alweys thei maken here queen by eleccioun, that is most worthy in armes.

And who that wil wake that sparhauk, 7 dayes and 7 nyghtes, and as sum men seyn, 3 dayes and 3 nyghtes, with outen companye, and with outen sleep, that faire lady schal zeven him, whan he hathe don, the first wyssche, that he wil wyssche, of erthely thinges: and that hathe been proved often-tymes.

Ye are the oldest man that I can espie in all this companye, so that, if any man can tell any cause of it, ye of all likelihode can say most in it, or at least wise more than any other man here assembled. 'Yea forsooth, good maister, quod this olde man, 'for I am well nigh an hundred yeares olde and no man here in this company anything neare unto mine age. 'Well, then, quod Maister More, 'how say you in this matter?

Ye be my lyfe, ye be myn hertys stere, Ye be my life, ye be my heart's guide, Quene of comfort, and of good companye, Queen of comfort, and of good company, Beth heuy ageyne, or elles moote I dye. Be heavy again, or else must I die.

After goynge be see and be londe, toward this contree, of that I have spoke, and to other yles and londes bezonde that contree, I have founden the sterre Antartyk of 33 degrees of heghte, and mo mynutes. And zif I hadde had companye and schippynge, for to go more bezonde, I trowe wel in certeyn, that wee scholde have seen alle the roundnesse of the firmament alle aboute.

In the tenth leafe: There wee sawe the fairest and the greatest vines with grapes accordinge, and younge trees and small wooddes very well smellinge, that ever weare sene. Thus have you brefely the some of the comodities which were founde by John Ribault and his companye on the coaste of America from 30. to 34. degrees.

How many tymes, deare Mother, have I bewailed my follye in wedding this creature who seemeth to mee more a fysh than a man, not mearly by reason of hys madnesse for the gracelesse practice of water-dabbling, but eke for hys passion for swimming in barley wine, ale, malmsey and other infuriatyng liquours. What manner of companye doth this dotard keepe on his fyshing pastimes, God wot!

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