From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama
The York Cycle, Play 11 - The Israelites in Egypt, the Ten Plagues, and Passage of the Red Sea
001 Rex Pharao. O pees, I bidde that no man passe,
002 But kepe the cours that I comaunde,
003 And takes gud heede to hym that hasse
004 Youre liff all haly in his hande.
005 Kyng Pharo my fadir was,
006 And led the lordshippe of this lande,
007 I am his hayre as elde will asse,
008 Euere in his steede to styrre and stande.
009 All Egippe is myne awne
010 To lede aftir my lawe,
011 I will my myght be knawen
012 And honnoured as it awe.
013 Therfore als kyng I commaunde pees
014 To all the pepill of this empire,
015 That no man putte hym fourthe in prees
016 But that will do als we desire.
017 And of youre sawes I rede you sees,
018 And sesse to me, youre sufferayne sire,
019 That most youre comforte may encrese
020 And at my liste lose liffe and lyre.
021 Consolator 1. My lorde, yf any were
022 þat walde not wirke youre will,
023 And we wist whilke thay were
024 Ful sone we suld thaym spill.
025 Rex Pharao. Thurghoute my kyngdome wolde I kenn,
026 And konne tham thanke that couthe me telle,
027 If any wer so weryd then
028 That wolde aught fande owre forse to fell.
029 Consolator 2. My lorde, thar are a maner of men
030 That mustirs grete maistris tham emell,
031 The Jewes that wonnes here in Jessen
032 And er named the childir of Israell.
033 They multyplye so faste
034 þat suthly we suppose
035 Thay are like, and they laste,
036 Yowre lordshippe for to lose.
037 Rex Pharao. Why, devill, what gawdes haue they begonne?
038 Er thai of myght to make afrayse?
039 Consolator 1. Tho felons folke, sir, first was fonn
040 In kyng Pharo yooure fadyr dayse.
041 Thay come of Joseph, Jacob sonn,
042 That was a prince worthy to prayse,
043 And sithen in ryste furthe are they run,
044 Now ar they like to lose our layse.
045 Thay sall confounde vs clene
046 Bot if thai sonner sese.
047 Rex Pharao. What devill ever may it mene
048 þat they so fast encrese?
049 Consolator 2. Howe they encrese full wele we kenn,
050 Als oure elders before vs fande,
051 Thay were talde but sexty and ten
052 Whan thei enterd into this lande.
053 Sithen haue they soionerd here in Jessen
054 Foure houndereth yoere, this we warande,
055 Now are they noumbered of myghty men
056 Wele more than thre hundereth thowsande,
057 Withowten wiffe and childe
058 And herdes that kepes ther fee.
059 Rex Pharao. So myght we be bygillid;
060 Bot certis that sall noght be,
061 For with qwantise we sall tham qwelle,
062 þat thei sall no farrar sprede.
063 Consolator 1. Lorde, we have herde oure fadres telle
064 Howe clerkis, that ful wele couthe rede,
065 Saide a man shulde wax tham emell
066 That suld fordo vs and owre dede.
067 Rex Pharao. Fy on tham, to the devell of helle!
068 Swilke destanye sall we noght drede.
069 We sall make mydwayes to spille tham,
070 Whenne oure Ebrewes are borne,
071 All that are mankynde to kille tham,
072 So sall they sone by lorne.
073 For of the other haue I non awe.
074 Swilke bondage sall we to tham bede:
075 To dyke and delfe, beere and drawe,
076 And do all swilke vnhonest dede.
077 þus sall the laddis beholden lawe,
078 Als losellis ever thaire lyff to leede.
079 Consolator 2. Certis lorde, this is a sotell sawe,
080 So sall the folke no farrar sprede.
081 Rex Pharao. Yaa, helpes to halde tham doune,
082 þat we no fantyse fynde.
083 Consolator 1. Lorde, we sall ever be bowne
084 In bondage tham to bynde.
085 Moyses. Grete God that all this grounde began
086 And governes euere in gud degree,
087 That made me Moyses vnto man
088 And saued me sythen out of the see-
089 Kyng Pharo he comaunded than
090 So that no sonnes shulde saued be,
091 Agayns his wille away I wan-
092 Thus has God shewed his myght in me.
093 Nowe am I here to kepe,
094 Sett vndir Synay syde,
095 The bisshoppe Jetro schepe,
096 So bettir bute to bide.
097 A, mercy God, mekill is thy myght,
098 What man may of thy meruayles mene!
099 I se yoondyr a ful selcouth syght
100 Wherof befor no synge was seene.
101 A busk I se yondir brennand bright
102 And the leues last ay inlike grene;
103 If it be werke of worldly wight
104 I will go witte withowten wene.
105 God. Moyses, come noght to nere
106 Bot stille in that stede dwelle,
107 And take hede to me here,
108 And tente what I the telle.
109 I am thy lorde, withoutyn lak,
110 To lengh thi liffe euen as me list,
111 And the same God that somtyme spak
112 Vnto thyne elders als thei wiste;
113 Both Abraham and Ysaac
114 And Jacob, saide I, suld be bliste
115 And multyplyeand, tham to mak,
116 So that ther seede shulde noght be myste.
117 And nowe kyng Pharo
118 Fuls thare childir ful faste.
119 If I suffir hym soo
120 þare seede shulde sone be past.
121 To make the message haue I mende
122 To hym that tham so harmed hase,
123 To warne hym with wordes hende
124 So that he lette my pepull passe,
125 That they to wildirnesse may wende
126 And wirshippe me als whilom was.
127 And yf he lenger gar them lende
128 His sange ful sone sall be 'alas'.
129 Moyses. A, lord, syth, with thy leue,
130 þat lynage loves me noght,
131 Gladly they walde me greve
132 And I slyke boodword brought.
133 Therfore lord, late sum othir fraste
134 þat hase more forse tham for to feere.
135 God. Moyses, be noght abaste
136 My bidding baldely to bere.
137 If thai with wrang ought walde the wrayste,
138 Owte of all wothis I sall the were.
139 Moyses. We, lord, thai wil noght to me trayste
140 For al the othes that I may swere.
141 To neven slyke note of newe
142 To folke of wykkyd will,
143 Withouten taken trewe,
144 They will noght take tente thertill.
145 God. And if they will noght vndirstande
146 Ne take heede how I haue the sente,
147 Before the kyng cast downe thy wande
148 And it sall seme as a serpent.
149 Sithen take the tayle in thy hande
150 And hardely vppe thou itt hente,
151 In the firste state als thou it fande-
152 So sall it turne be myn entent.
153 Hyde thy hande in thy barme
154 And as a lepre it sall be like,
155 Sithen hale withouten harme;
156 þi syngnes sall be slyke.
157 And if he wil not suffre than
158 My pepull for to passe in pees,
159 I sall send vengeaunce ix or x
160 To sewe hym sararre, or I sesse.
161 Bot the Jewes that wonnes in Jessen
162 Sall noyot be merked with that messe,
163 Als lange als thai my lawes will kenne
164 þer comfort sal I euere encresse.
165 Moyses. A, lorde, lovyd be thy wille
166 þat makes thy folke so free,
167 I sall tell tham vntill
168 Als thou telles vnto me.
169 But to the kyng, lorde, whan I come
170 And he ask me what is thy name,
171 And I stande stille than, defe and dum,
172 How sal I be withouten blame?
173 God. I saie thus ego sum qui sum,
174 I am he that I am the same,
175 And if thou myght not meve ne mum
176 I sall the saffe fro synne and shame.
177 Moyses. I vndirstande this thyng
178 With al the myght in me.
179 God. Be bolde in my blissyng,
180 Thy belde ay sall I be.
181 Moyses. A, lorde of lyffe, lere me my layre
182 þat I there tales may trewly tell.
183 Vnto my frendis nowe will I fare,
184 þe chosen childre of Israell,
185 To telle tham comforte of ther care,
186 And of there daunger that thei in dwell.
187 God mayntayne you and me euermare,
188 And mekill myrthe be you emell.
189 Puer 1. A, Moyses, maistir dere,
190 Oure myrthe is al mornyng,
191 We are harde halden here
192 Als carls vndir the kyng.
193 Puer 2. Moyses, we may mourne and myne,
194 þer is no man vs myrthes mase;
195 And sen we come al of a kynne,
196 Ken vs som comforte in this case.
197 Moyses. Beith of youre mornyng blyne,
198 God wil defende you of your fays.
199 Oute of this woo he will you wynne
200 To plese hym in more plener place.
201 I sall carpe to the kyng
202 And fande to make you free.
203 Puer 3. God sende vs gud tythynge,
204 And allway with you be.
205 Moyses. Kyng Pharo, to me take tent.
206 Rex Pharao. Why, what tydyngis can thou tell?
207 Moyses. Fro God of heuen thus am I sente
208 To fecche his folke of Israell;
209 To wildirnesse he walde thei wente.
210 Rex Pharao. 3aa, wende thou to the devell of hell.
211 I make no force howe thou has mente,
212 For in my daunger sall thei dwelle.
213 And faytour, for thy sake,
214 þei sall be putte to pyne.
215 Moyses. þanne will God vengeaunce take
216 On the and on al thyne.
217 Rex Pharao. Fy on the ladde, oute of my lande!
218 Wenes thou with wiles to lose oure laye?
219 When is this warlowe with his wande
220 þat wolde thus wynne oure folke away?
221 Consolator 2. It is Moyses, we wele warrand,
222 Agayne al Egipte is he ay.
223 Youre fadir grete faute in hym fande,
224 Nowe will he marre you if he may.
225 Rex Pharao. Nay, nay, that daunce is done,
226 þat lordan leryd ouere-late.
227 Moyses. God biddis the graunte my bone,
228 And late me go my gate.
229 Rex Pharao. Biddis God me? Fals lurdayne, thou lyes!
230 What takyn talde he, toke thou tent?
231 Moyses. 3aa sir, he saide thou suld despise
232 Botht me and all his comaundement.
233 In thy presence kast on this wise
234 My wande he bad by his assent,
235 And that thou shulde the wele avise
236 Howe it shulde turne to a serpent.
237 And in his haly name
238 Here sal I ley it downe:
239 Loo ser, se her the same.
240 Rex Pharao. A! Dogg! þe deuyll the drowne!
241 Moyses. He saide that I shulde take the tayle
242 So for to proue his poure playne,
243 And sone he saide it shuld not fayle
244 For to turne a wande agayne.
245 Loo sir, behalde.
246 Rex Pharao. Hopp illa hayle!
247 Now certis this is a sotill swayne,
248 But this boyes sall byde here in oure bayle,
249 For al thair gaudis sall noght tham gayne;
250 Bot warse, both morne and none,
251 Sall thei fare for thy sake.
252 Moyses. God sende sum vengeaunce sone,
253 And on thi werke take wrake.
254 Egyptian 1. Allas, allas, this lande is lorne,
255 On lif we may no lenger lende.
256 Egyptian 2. So grete myscheffe is made sen morne
257 þer may no medycyne vs amende.
258 Consolator 1. Sir kyng, we banne that we wer borne,
259 Oure blisse is all with bales blende.
260 Rex Pharao. Why crys you swa, laddis? Liste you scorne?
261 Egyptian 1. Sir kyng, slyk care was neuere kende.
262 Oure watir that was ordand
263 To men and beestis fudde,
264 Thurghoute al Egipte lande
265 Is turned to rede blude.
266 Full vgly and ful ill is it
267 þat was ful faire and fresshe before.
268 Rex Pharao. This is grete wondir for to witt
269 Of all the werkis that ever wore.
270 Egyptian 2. Nay lorde, ther is anothir yoitt
271 That sodenly sewes vs ful sore,
272 For tadys and frosshis we may not flitte,
273 Thare venym loses lesse and more.
274 Egyptian 1. Lorde, grete myses bothe morn and none
275 Bytis vs full bittirlye,
276 And we hope al by done
277 By Moyses, oure enemye.
278 Consolator 1. Lorde, whills ve with this menyhe meve
279 Mon never myrthe be vs emange.
280 Rex Pharao. Go saie we sall no lenger greve-
281 But thai sall neuere the tytar gang.
282 Egyptian 2. Moyses, my lord has grauntyd leve
283 At lede thy folk to likyng lande,
284 So that we mende of oure myscheue.
285 Moyses. I wate ful wele thar wordes er wrange;
286 That sall ful sone be sene,
287 For hardely I hym heete,
288 And he of malice mene
289 Mo mervaylles mon he mett.
290 Egyptian 1. Lorde, allas, for dule we dye,
291 We dar not loke oute at no dore.
292 Rex Pharao. What deuyll ayles yow so to crye?
293 Egyptian 2. We fare nowe werre than euere we fure.
294 Grete loppis ouere all this lande thei flye,
295 That with bytyng makis mekill blure.
297 Egyptian 1. Lorde, oure beestis lyes dede and dry
298 Als wele on myddyng als on more-
299 Both oxe, horse and asse
300 Fallis dede doune sodanly.
301 Rex Pharao. Therof no man harme has
302 Halfe so mekil as I.
303 Consolator 2. 3is lorde, poure men has mekill woo
304 To see ther catell be out cast.
305 The Jewes in Jessen faren noyot soo,
306 They haue al likyng in to last.
307 Rex Pharao. Go saie we giffe tham leue to goo
308 To tyme there parellis be ouer-past-
309 But or thay flitte over-farre vs froo
310 We sall garre feste tham foure so fast.
311 Egyptian 2. Moyses, my lord giffis leue
312 Thy men for to remewe.
313 Moyses. He mon haue more mischeff
314 But if his tales be trewe.
315 Egyptian 1. We, lorde, we may not lede this liffe.
316 Rex Pharao. Why, is ther greuaunce growen agayne?
317 Egyptian 2. Swilke poudre, lord, apon vs dryffe
318 That whare it bettis it makis a blayne.
319 Egyptian 1. Like mesellis makis it man and wyffe.
320 Sythen ar they hurte with hayle and rayne;
321 Oure wynes in mountaynes may noyot thryve,
322 So ar they threst and thondour-slayne.
323 Rex Pharao. How do thay in Jessen,
324 þe Jewes, can yoe aught say?
325 Egyptian 2. þis care nothyng they ken,
326 þay fele no such affray.
327 Rex Pharao. No? Devill! And sitte they so in pees
328 And we ilke day in doute and drede?
329 Egyptian 1. My lorde, this care will euere encrese
330 Tille Moyses have leve tham to lede.
331 Consolator 1. Lorde, war thay wente than walde it sese,
332 So shuld we save vs and oure seede,
333 Ellis be we lorne-this is no lese.
334 Rex Pharao. Late hym do fourth, the devill hym spede!
335 For his folke sall no ferre
336 Yf he go welland woode.
337 Consolator 2. þan will itt sone be warre,
338 3it war bettir thai yooode.
339 Egyptian 2. We, lorde, new harme is comon to hande.
340 Rex Pharao. No! Devill! Will itt no bettir be?
341 Egyptian 1. Wilde wormes is laide ouere al this lande,
342 þai leve no frute ne floure on tree;
343 Agayne that storme may nothyng stande.
344 Egyptian 2. Lord, ther is more myscheff thynke me,
345 And thre daies hase itt bene durand,
346 So myrke that non myght othir see.
347 Egyptian 1. My lorde, grete pestelence
348 Is like ful lange to last.
349 Rex Pharao. Owe, come that in oure presence?
350 Than is oure pride al past.
351 Egyptian 2. My lorde, this vengeaunce lastis lange,
352 And mon till Moyses haue his bone.
353 Consolator 1. Lorde, late tham wende, els wirke we wrang,
354 It may not helpe to hover na hone.
355 Rex Pharao. Go saie we graunte tham leue to gange
356 In the devill way, sen itt bus be done-
357 For so may fall we sall tham fang
358 And marre tham or tomorne at none.
359 Egyptian 1. Moyses, my lorde has saide
360 þou sall haue passage playne.
361 Moyses. And to passe am I paied.
362 My frendes, bees nowe fayne,
363 For at oure will now sall we wende,
364 In lande of lykyng for to lende.
365 Puer 1. Kyng Pharo, that felowns fende,
366 Will haue grete care fro this be kende,
367 Than will he schappe hym vs to shende
368 And sone his ooste aftir vs sende.
369 Moyses. Beis noght aferde, God is youre frende,
370 Fro alle oure fooes he will vs fende.
371 þarfore comes furthe with me,
372 Haves done and drede yow noght.
373 Puer 2. My lorde, loved mott thou bee,
374 þat us fro bale has brought.
375 Puer 3. Swilke frenshippe never before we fande,
376 But in this faire defautys may fall.
377 þe Rede See is ryght nere at hande,
378 þer bus vs bide to we be thrall.
379 Moyses. I sall make vs way with my wande,
380 For God hase sayde he saue vs sall;
381 On aythir syde the see sall stande,
382 Tille we be wente, right as a wall.
383 Therfore have yoe no drede,
384 But faynde ay God to plese.
385 Puer 1. þat lorde to lande vs lede,
386 Now wende we all at esse.
387 Egyptian 1. Kyng Pharro, ther folke er gane.
388 Rex Pharao. Howe nowe, es ther any noyes of newe?
389 Egyptian 2. The Ebrowes er wente ilkone.
390 Rex Pharao. How sais thou that?
391 Egyptian 1. þer talis er trewe.
392 Rex Pharao. Horse harneys tyte, that thei be tane,
393 þis ryott radly sall tham rewe.
394 We sall not sese or they be slone,
395 For to the se we sall tham sew.
396 Do charge oure charyottis swithe
397 And frekly folowes me.
398 Egyptian 2. My lorde we are full blithe
399 At youre biddyng to be.
400 Consolator 2. Lorde, to youre biddyng we er boune
401 Owre bodies baldely for to bede,
402 We sall noght byde, but dyng tham doune
403 Tylle all be dede, withouten drede.
404 Rex Pharao. Hefe vppe youre hartis ay to Mahownde,
405 He will be nere vs in oure nede.
406 Owte! Ay herrowe! Devill, I drowne!
407 Egyptian 1. Allas, we dye for alle our dede.
408 Puer 1. Nowe ar we wonne fra waa
409 And saued oute of the see,
410 Cantemus domino,
411 To God a sange synge wee.
© Copyright, 2007. From Stage to Page and Gerard NeCastro. All Rights Reserved.
All materials on this page are free to all users. We only ask two things of you. First, please be sure to cite the source properly: the citation is listed below. Second, if you would, please take one minute to say hello and tell us that you are using the pages: a quick email to firstname.lastname@example.org would be perfect.
Proper Citation: NeCastro, Gerard. The York Cycle, Play 11 - The Israelites in Egypt, the Ten Plagues, and Passage of the Red Sea. From Stage to Page - Medieval and Renaissance Drama. http:www.umm.maine.edu/faculty/necastro/drama. Date Visited.