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Renascence Editions

EVERYMAN. (John Skot, 1521-1537?)

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Note on the e-text: this Renascence Editions text is based on the edition by W.W. Greg, 1904. It was transcribed by Risa S. Bear. Formatting of the speakers has been modified for ease of reading. Content unique to this presentation is copyright © 1999 The University of Oregon. For nonprofit and educational uses only. Send comments and corrections to the Publisher, rbear[at]uoregon.edu

Dedicated to Tom Stave.


Here begynneth a treatyse how yt hye
fader of heuen sendeth dethe to so-
mon euery creature to come and
gyue counte of theyr liues in
this worlde and is in maner
of a morall playe.

image: woodcut showing Death confrontingEveryman. British Museum.


Pray you all gyue your audyence
And here this mater with reuerence
By fygure a morall playe
The somonynge of euery man called it is
That of our lyues and endynge shewes
How transytory we be all daye
This mater is wonders precyous
But the entent of it is more gracyous
And swete to bere awaye
The story sayth man in the begynnynge
Loke well and take good heed to the endynge
Be you neuer so gay
Ye thynke synne in the begynnynge full swete
Whiche in the ende causeth the soule to wepe
Whan the body lyeth in claye
Here shall you se how felawshyp and Iolyte
Bothe strengthe pleasure and beaute
Wyll fade from the as floure in maye
For ye shall here how our heuen kynge
Calleth euery man to a generall rekenynge
Gyue audyence and here what he doth saye.
                        God speketh.
    I perceyue here in my maieste
How that all creatures be to me vnkynde
Lyuynge without drede in worldely prosperyte
Of ghostly syght the people be so blynde
Drowned in synne they know me not for theyr god
In worldely ryches is all theyr mynde
They fere not my ryghtwysnes the sharpe rood
My lawe that I shewed whan I for them dyed
They forgete clene and shedynge of my bloderede
I hanged bytwene two it can not be denyed
To gete them lyfe I suffred to be deed
I heled theyr fete with thornes hurt was my heed
I coulde do nomore than I dyde truely
And nowe I se the people do clene for sake me
They vse the seuen deedly synnes damphable
As pryde coueteyse wrathe and lechery
Now in the worlde be made commendable
And thus they leue of aungelles ye heuenly company
Euery man lyueth so after his owne pleasure
And yet of theyr lyfe they be nothinge sure
I se the more that I then forbere
The worse they be fro yere to yere
All that lyueth appayreth faste
Therfore I wyll in all the haste
Haue a rekenynge of euery mannes persone
For and I leue the people thus alone
In theyr lyfe and wycked tempestes
Verly they wyll become moche worse than beestes
For now one wolde by enuy another vp ete
Charyte they do all clene forgete
I hoped well that euery man
In my glory shulde make his mansyon
And therto I had them all electe
But now I se lyke traytours deiecte
They thanke me not for ye pleasure yt to them ment
Nor yet for theyr beynge that I them haue lent
I profered the people grete multytude of mercy
And fewe there be that asketh it hertly
They be so combred with worldly ryches
That nedes on them I must do Iustyce
On euery man lyuynge without fere
Where arte thou deth thou myghty messengere
Almyghty god I am here at your wyll
Your commaundement to fulfyll.
Go thou to euery man
And shewe hym in my name
A pylgrymage he must on him take
Which he in no wyse may escape
And that he brynge with him a sure rekenynge
Without delay or ony taryenge.
Lorde I wyll in the worlde go renne ouer all
And cruelly out searche bothe grete and small
Euery man wyll I beset that lyueth beestly
Out of goddes lawes and dredeth not foly
He that loueth rychesse I wyll stryke wt my darte
His sight to blynde and for heuen to departe
Excepte that almes be his good frende
In hell for to dwell worlde without ende
Loo yonder I se Euery man walkynge
Full lytlell he thynketh on my comynge
His mynde is on flesshely lustes and his treasure
And grete payne it shall cause hym to endure
Before the lorde heuen kinge
Euery man stande styll whyder arte thou goynge
Thus gayly hast thou thy maker forgete.
                        Euery man.
Why askest thou
Woldest thou wete.
Ye syr I wyll shewe you
In grete haste I am sende to the
From god out of his mageste
                        Euery man.
What sente to me.
Ye certaynly.
Thoughe thou haue forgete hym here
He thynketh on the in the heauenly spere
As or we departe thou shalte knowe.
                       Euery man.
What desyreth god of me.
That shall I shewe the.
A rekenynge he wyll nedes haue
Without ony lenger respite.
                       Euery man.
To gyue a rekenynge longer layser I craue
This blynde mater troubleth my witte.
On the thou must take a longe Iourney
Therefore thy boke of counte wt the thou brynge
For turne agayne thou can not by no waye
And loke thou be sure of thy rekenynge
For before god thou shalt answere and shewe
Thy many badde dedes and good but a fewe
How thou hast spente thy lyfe and in what wyse
Before the chefe lorde of paradyse
Haue I do we were in that waye
For wete thou well yu shalt make none attournay.
                    Euery man.
Full vnredy I am suche rekenynge to gyue
I knowe the not what messenger arte thou.
I am dethe that no man dredeth
For euery man I rest and no man spareth
For it is gods commaundement
That all to me shold be obedyent.
                    Euery man.
O deth thou comest whan I had ye least in mynde
In thy power it lyeth me to saue
Yet of my good wyl I gyue ye yf thou wyl be kynde
Ye a thousand pound shalte thou haue
And dyffere this mater tyll an other daye
Euery man it may not be by no waye
I set not by golde syluer nor rychesse
Nor by pope emperour kynge duke ne prynces
For and I wolde receyue gyftes grete
All the worlde I myght gete
But my custome is clene contrary
I gyue the no respyte come hens and not tary.
                        Euery man.
Alas shall I haue no lenger respyte
I may saye deth geueth no warnynge
To thynke on the it maketh my herte seke
For all vnredy is my boke of rekenynge
But .xii. yere and I myght haue a bydynge
My countynge boke I wolde make so clere
That my rekenynge I sholde not nede to fere
Wherefore deth I praye the for goddes mercy
Spare me tyll I be prouyded of remedy.
The auayleth not to crye wepe and praye
But hast the lyghtly that yu were gone ye Iournaye
And preue thy frendes yf thou can
For wete thou well the tyde abydeth no man
And in the worlde eche lyuynge creature
For Adams synne must dye of nature.
                        Euery man.
Dethe yf I sholde this pylgrymage take
And my rekenynge suerly make
Shewe me for saynt charyte
Sholde I not come agayne shortly.
No euery man and thou be ones there
Thou mayst neuer more come here
Trust me veryly.
                        Euery man.
O gracyous god in the hye seat celestyall
Haue mercy on me in this moost nede
Shall I haue no company fro this vale terestryall
Of myne acqueynce that way me to lede.
Ye yf ony be so hardy
That wolde go with the and bere the company
Hye the that yu were gone to goddes magnyfycence
Thy rekenynge to gyue before his presence.
What weenest thou thy lyue is gyuen the
And thy worldely goodes also.
                        Euery man.
I had wende so verelye.
Nay nay it was but lende the
For as soone as thou arte go
Another a whyle shall haue it and than go ther fro
Euen as thou hast done
Euery man yu arte made thou hast thy wyttes fyue
And here on erthe wyll not amende thy lyue
For sodeynly I do come.
                        Euery man.
O wretched caytyfe wheder shall I flee
That I myght scape this endles sorowe.
Now gentyll deth spare me tyll to morowe
That I may amende me
With good aduysement
Naye thereto I wyll not consent
Nor no man wyll I respyte
But to the herte sodeynly I shall smyte
Without ony aduyesment
And now out of thy syght I wyll me hy
Se thou make the redy shortely
For thou mayst saye this is the daye
That no man lyuynge may scape a waye
                        Euery man.
Alas I may well wepe with syghes depe
Now haue I no maner of company
To helpe me in my Iourney and me to kepe
And also my wrytynge is full vnredy
How shall I do now for to excuse me
I wolde to god I had neuer begete
To my soule a full grete profyte it had be
For now I fere paynes huge and grete
The tyme passeth lorde helpe that all wrought
For though I mourne it auayleth nought
The day passeth and is almoost ago
I wote not well what for to do
To whome were I best my complaynt to make
What and I to felawshyp therof spake
And shewed hym of this sodeyne chaunce
For in hym is all myne affyaunce
We haue in the worlde so many a daye
Be good frendes in sporte and playe
I se hym yonder certaynely
I trust that he wyll bere me company
Therfore to hym wyll I speke to ese my sorowe
Well mette good felawshyp and good morowe.
Euery man good morowe by this daye
Syr why lokest thou so pyteously
If ony thynge be a mysse I praye the me saye
That I may helpe to remedy.
                        Every man.
Ye good felawshyp ye
I am in greate ieoparde.
My true frende shewe to me your mynde
I wyll not forsake the to my lyues ende
In the waye of good company.
                        Every man.
That was well spoken and louyngly.
Syr I must nedes knowe your heuynesse
I haue pyte to se you in ony dystresse
If ony haue you wronged ye shall reuenged be
Thoughe that I knowe before that I sholde dye.
                        Every man.
Veryly felawshyp gramercy.
Tusshe by thy thankes I set not a strawe
Shewe me your grefe and saye no more.
                     Every man.
If I my herte sholde to you breke
And than you to tourne your mynde fro me
And wolde not me comforte whan ye here me speke
Than sholde I tentymes soryer be.
Syr I saye as I will do in dede.
                        Every man.
Than be you a good frende at nede
I haue found you true here before.
And so ye shall euermore
For in fayth and thou go to hell
I wyll not forsake the by the waye.
                        Every man.
Ye speke lyke a good frende I byleue you well
I shall deserue it and I may.
I speke of no deseruynge by this daye
For he that wyll saye and nothynge do
Is not worthy with good company to go
Therfore shewe me the grefe of your mynde
As to your frende most louynge and kynde.
                        Every man.
I shall shewe you how it is
Commaunded I am to go on a iournaye
A longe waye harde and daungerous
And gyue a strayte counte without delaye
Before the hye Iuge adonay
Wherfore I pray you bere me company
As ye haue promysed in this iournaye.
That is mater in dede promyse is duty
But and I sholde take suche a vyage on me
I knowe it well it shulde be to my payne
Also it make me aferde certayne
But let vs take counsell here as well as we can
For your wordes wolde fere a stronge man.
                      Every man.
Why ye sayd yf I had nede
Ye wolde me neuer forsake quycke ne deed
Thoughe it were to hell truely.
So I sayd certaynely
But such pleasures be set a syde the sothe to saye
And also yf we toke suche a iournaye
Whan sholde we come agayne.
                        Every man.
Naye neuer agayne tyll the daye of dome.
In fayth than wyll not I come there
who hath you these tydynges brought.
                      Every man.
In dede death was with me here.
Now by god that all hathe bought
If deth were the messenger
For no man that is lyuynge to daye
I wyll not go that loth iournaye
Not for the fader that bygate me.
                      Every man.
Ye promysed other wyse parde.
I wote well I say so truely
And yet yf yu wylte ete & drynke & make good chere
Or haunt to women the lusty company
I wolde not forsake you whyle the daye is clere
Truste me veryly
                        Every man.
Ye therto ye wolde be redy
To go to myrthe solas and playe
Your mynde wyll soner apply
Than to bere me company in my longe iournaye.
Now in good fayth I wyll not that waye
But and thou wyll murder or ony man kyll
In that I wyll helpe the with a good wyll.
                      Every man.
O that is a symple aduyse in dede
Gentyll felawe helpe me in my necessyte
We haue loued longe and now I nede
And gentyll felawshyp remembre me.
Wheder ye haue loued me or no
By saynt John I wyll not with the go.
                        Every man.
Yet I pray the take ye labour & do so moche for me
To brynge me forwarde for saynt charyte
And comforte me tyll I come without the towne.
Nay and thou wolde gyue me a newe gowne
I wyll not a fote with the go
But and yu had taryed I wolde not haue lefte the so
And as now god spede the in thy Iournaye
For from the I wyll departe as fast as I maye.
                        Every man.
Wheder a waye felawshyp wyll yu forsake me.
Ye by my faye to god I be take the.
                      Every man.
Farewell good felawshyp for ye my herte is sore
A dewe for euer I shall se the no more
In fayth euery man fare well now at the ende
For you I wyll remembre ytptynge is mournynge.
                        Every man.
A lacke shall we this departe in dede
A lady helpe without ony more comforte
Lo felawshyp forsaketh me in my most nede
For helpe in this worlde wheder shall I resorte
Felawshyp here before with me wolde mery make
And now lytell sorowe for me dooth he take
It is sayd in prosperyte men frendes may fynde
Whiche in aduersyte be full vnkynde
Now wheder for socoure shall I flee
Syth that felawshyp hath forsaken me
To my kynnesman I wyll truely
Prayenge them to helpe me in my necessyte
I byleue that they wyll do so
For kynde wyll crepe where it may not go
I wyll go saye for yonder I se them go
Where be ye now my frendes and kynnesmen.
Here we be now at your commaundement
Cosyn I praye you shewe vs your entent
In ony wise and not spare.
Ye euery man and to vs declare
Yf ye be dysposed to go ony whyder
For wete you well wyll lyue and dye to gyder.
In welth and wo we wyll with you bolde
For ouer his kynne a man may be holde.
                        Euery man.
Gramercy my frendes and kynnesmen kynde
Now shall I shewe you the grefe of my mynde
I was commaunded by a messenger
That is a hye kynges chefe offycer
He bad me go a pylgrymage to my payne
And I knowe well I shall neuer come agayne
Also I must gyue a rekenynge strayte
For I haue a grete enemy that hath me in wayte
Whiche entendeth me for to hynder.
What a counte is that which ye must render
That wolde I knowe.
                      Euery man.
Of all my workes I must shewe
How I haue lyued and my dayes spent
Also of yll dedes that I haue vsed
In my tyme syth lyfe was me lent
And of all vertues that I haue refused
Therfore I praye you go thyder with me
To helpe to make myn accounte for saynt charyte.
What to go thyder is that the mater
Nay euery man I had leuer fast brede and water
All this fyue yere and more.
                        Euery man.
Alas that euer I was bore
For now shall I neuer be mery
If that you forsake me.
A syr what ye be a mery man
Take good herte to you and make no mone
But one thynge I warne you by saynt Anne
As for me ye shall go alone.
                        Euery man.
My cosyn wyll you not with me go.
No by our lady I haue the cramp in my to
Trust not to me for so god me spede
I wyll deceyue you in your moost nede.
It auayleth not vs to tyse
Ye shall haue my mayde with all my herte
She loueth to go to festes there to be nyse
And to daunce and a brode to sterte
I wyll gyue her leue to helpe you in that Iourney
If that you and she may a gree.
                        Euery man.
Now shewe me the very effecte of your mynde
Wyll you go with me or abyde be hynde.
Abide behynde ye that wyll I and maye
Therfore farewell tyll another daye.
                      Euery man.
Howe sholde I be mery or gladde
For fayre promyses men to me make
But whan I haue moost nede they me forsake
I am deceyued that maketh me sadde.
Cosyn euery man farewell now
For veryly I wyl not go with you
Also of myne owne an vnredy rekenynge
I haue to accounte therfore I make taryenge
Now god kepe the for now I go.
                      Euery man.
A Iesus is all come here to
Lo fayre wordes maketh fooles fayne
They promyse and nothynge wyll do certayne
My kynnesmen promysed me faythfully
For to a byde with me stedfastly
And now fast a waye do they flee
Euen so felawshyp promysed me
What frende were best me of to prouyde
I lose my tyme here longer to abyde
Yet in my lyfe I haue loued ryches
If that my good now helpe me myght
He wolde make my herte full lyght
I wyll speke to hym in this dystresse
Where arte thou my gooddes and ryches.
Who calleth me euery man what hast thou haste
I lye here in corners trussed and pyled so hye
And in chestes I am locked so fast
Also sacked in bagges thou mayst se with thyn eye
I can not styre in packes lowe I lye
What wolde ye haue lyghtly me saye.
                     Euery man.
Come hyder good in al the hast thou may
For of counseyll I must desyre the.
Syr & ye in the worlde haue sorowe or aduersyte
That can I helpe you to remedy shortly.
                     Euery man.
It is another dysease that greueth me
In this worlde it is not I tell the so
I am sent for an other way to go
To gyue a strayte counte generall
Before the hyest Iupyter of all
And all my lyfe I haue had Ioye & pleasure in the
Therefore I pray the go with me
For parauenture thou mayst before god almyghty
My rekenynge helpe to clene and puryfye
For it is sayd euer amonge
That money maketh all ryght that is wronge.
Nay euery man I synge an other songe
I folowe no man in suche vyages
For and I wente with the
Thou sholdes fare moche the worse for me
For bycause on me thou dyd set thy mynde
Thy rekenynge I haue made blotted and blynde
That thyne accounte thou can not make truly
And that hast thou for the loue of me.
                        Euery man.
That wolde greue me full sore
Whan I sholde come to that ferefull answere
Vp let vs go thyther to gyder.
Nay not so I am to brytell I may not endure
I wyll folowe man one fote be ye sure.
                        Euery man.
Alas I haue the loued and had grete pleasure
All my lyfe dayes on good and treasure.
That is to thy dampnacyon without lesynge
For my loue is contrary to the loue euerlastynge
But yf thou had me loued moderately durynge
As to the poore gyue parte of me
Than sholdest thou not in this dolour be
Nor in this grote sorowe and care.
                        Euery man.
Lo now was I deceyued or I was ware
And all I may wyte my spendynge of tyme.
What wenest thou that I am thyne.
                     Euery man.
I had went so.
Naye euery man I saye no
As for a whyle I was lente the
A season thou hast had me in prosperyte
My condycyon is mannes soule to kyll
Yf I saue one a thousande I do spyll
Wenest thou that I wyll folowe the
Nay fro this worlde not veryle.
                     Euery man.
I had wende otherwyse.
Therfore to thy soule good is a thefe
For whan thou arte deed this is my gyse
Another to deceyue in this same wyse
As I haue done the and all to his soules reprefe.
                     Euery man.
O false good cursed thou hast deceyued me
And caught me in thy snare.
Mary thou brought thy selfe in care
Wherof I am gladde
I must nedes laugh I can not be sadde.
                        Euery man.
A good thou hast had longe my hertely loue
I gaue the that whiche sholde be the lordes aboue
But wylte thou not go with me in dede
I praye the trouth to saye.
No so god me spede
Therfore fare well and haue good daye.
                     Euery man.
O to whome shall I make my mone
For to go with me in that heuy Iournaye
Fyrst felawshyp sayd he wolde with me gone
His wordes were very plesaunte and gaye
But afterwarde he lefte me alone
Than spake I to my kynnesmen all in despayre
An also they gaue me wordes fayre
They lacked no fayre spekynge
But all forsake me in the endynge
Then wente I to my goodes that I loued best
In hope to haue comforte but there had I leest
For my goodes sharpely dyd me tell
That he bryngeth many in to hell
Than of my selfe I was ashamed
And so I am worthy to be blamed
Thus may I wel my selfe hate
Of whome shall I now counsell take
I thynke that I shall neuer spede
Tyll that I go to my good dede
But alas she is so weke
That she can neuer go nor speke
Yet wyll I venter on her now
My good dedes where be you.
                     Good dedes.
Here I lye colde in the grounde
Thy synnes hath me sore bounde
That I can not stere.
                     Euery man.
O good dedes I stand in fere
I must you pray of counseyll
For helpe now sholde come ryght well.
                     Good dedes.
Euery man I haue vnderstandynge
That ye be somoned of a counte to make
Before Myssyas of Iherusalem kynge
And you do by me yt Iournay wt you wyll I take.
                        Euery man.
Therfor I come to you my moone to make
I praye you that ye wyll go with me.
                     Good dedes.
I wolde full fayne but I can not stande veryly.
                        Euery man.
Why is there ony thynge on you fall.
                     Good dedes.
Ye syr I may thanke you of all
Yf ye had parfytely chered me
Your boke of counte full redy had be
Loke how the bokes of your workes and dedes eke
Ase how they lye vnder the fete
To your soules heuynes.
                     Euery man.
Our lorde Iesus helpe me
For one letter here I can not se.
                     Good dedes.
There is a blynde rekenynge in tyme of dystres.
                     Euery man.
Good dedes I praye you helpe me in this nede
Or elles I am for euer dampned in dede
Therfore helpe me to make rekenynge
Before the redemer of all thynge
That kynge is and was and euer shall.
                     Good dedes.
Euery man I am sory of your fall
And fayne wolde I helpe you and I were able.
                     Euery man.
Good dedes your counseyll I pray you gyue me.
                     Good dedes.
That shall I do veryly
Thoughe that on my fete I may not go
I haue a syster that shall with you also
Called knowledge whiche shall with you abyde
To helpe you to make that dredefull rekenynge
Euery man I wyll go with the and be thy gyde
In thy moost nede to go by thy syde.
                     Euery man.
In good condycyon I am now in euery thynge
And am hole content with this good thynge
Thanked by god my creature.
                     Good dedes.
And whan he hath brought you there
Where thou shalte hele the of thy smarte
Than go you wt your rekenynge & your good dedes togyder
For to make you Ioyfull at herte
Before the blessed trynyte.
                     Euery man.
My good dedes gramercy
I am well content certaynly
With your wordes swete.
Now go we togyder louyngly
To confessyon that clensyng ryuere.
                        Euery man.
For Ioy I wepe I wolde we were there
But I pray you gyue me cognycyon
Where dwelleth that holy man confessyon.
In the hous of saluacyon
We shall fynde hym in that place
That shall vs comforte by goddes grace
Lo this is confessyon knele downe & aske mercy
For he is in good conceyte with god almyghty.
                     Euery man.
O gloryous fountayne yt all vnclennes doth claryfy
Wasshe from me the spottes of vyce vnclene
That on me no synne may be sene
I come with knowledge for my redempcyon
Redempte with herte and full contrycyon
For I am commaunded a pylgrymage to take
And grete accountes before god to make
Now I praye you shryfte moder of saluacyon
Helpe my good dedes for my pyteous exclamacyon.
I knowe your sorowe well euery man
Bycause with knowlege ye came to me
I wyll you comforte as well as I can
And a precyous Iewell I will gyue the
Called penaunce voyce voyder of aduersyte
therwith shall your body chastysed be
With abstynence & perseueraunce in goddes seruyce
Here shall you receyue that scourge of me
Whiche is penaunce stronge that ye must endure
To remembre thy sauyour was scourged for the
With sharpe scourges and suffred it pacyently
So must yu or thou scape that paynful pylgrymage
Knowlege kepe hym in this vyage
And hy tyme good dedes wyll be with the
But in ony wyse be seker of mercy
For your tyme draweth fast and ye wyll saued be
Aske god mercy and he wyll graunte truely
Whan wt the scourge of penaunce man doth hym bynde
The oyle of forgyuenes than shall he fynde.
                         Euery man.
Thanked be god for his gracyous werke
For now I wyll my penaunce begyn
This hath reioysed and lyghted my herte
Though the knottes be paynfull and harde within
Euery man loke your penaunce that ye fulfyll
What payne that euer it to you be
And knowledge shall gyue you counseyll at wyll
How your accounte ye shall make clerely.
                        Euery man.
O eternall god O heuenly fygure
O way of ryghtwysnes O goodly vysyon
Whiche descended downe in a vyrgyn pure
Bycause he wolde euery man redeme
Whiche Adam forfayted by his dysobedyence
O blessyd god heed electe and hye deuyne
Forgyve my greuous offence
Here I crye the mercy in this presence
O ghostly treasure. O ransomer and redemer
Of all the worlde hope and conduyter
Myrrour of Ioye foundatour of mercy
Whiche enlumyneth heuen and erth therby
Here my clamorous complaynt though it late be
Receyue my prayers vnworthy in this heuy lyfe
Though I be a synner moost abhomnynable
Yet let my name be wryten in moyses table
O mary praye to the maker of all thynge
Me for to helpe at my endynge
And saue me fro the power of my enemy
For deth assayleth me strongly
And lady that I may by meane of thy prayer
Of your sones glory to be partynere
By the meanes of his passyon I it craue
I beseeche you helpe my soule to saue
Knowlege gyue me the scourge of penaunce
My flesshe therwith shall gyue acqueyntaunce
I wyll now begyn yf god gyue me grace.
Euery man god gyue you tyme and space
Thus I bequeth you in ye handes of our sauyour
Now may you make your rekenynge sure
                        Euery man.
In the name of the holy trynyte
My body sore punysshyd shall be
Take this body for the synne of the flesse
Also thou delytest to go gay and fresshe
And in the way of dampnacyon yu dyd me brynge
Therfore suffre now strokes of punysshynge
Now of penaunce I wyll wade the water clere
To saue me from purgatory that sharp fyre.
                     Good dedes.
I thanke god now I can walke and go
And am delyuered of my sykenesse and wo
Therfore with euery man I wyll go and not spare
His good workes I wyll helpe hym to declare.
Now euery man be mery and glad
Your good dedes cometh now ye may not be sad
Now is your good dedes hole and sounde
Goynge vpryght vpon the grounde.
                        Euery man.
My herte is lyght and shalbe euermore
Now will I smite faster than I dyde before.
                     Good dedes.
Euery man pylgryme my specyall frende
Blessed be thou without ende
For the is preparate the eternall glory
Ye haue me made hole and sounde
Therfore I wyll byde by the in euery stounde.
                     Euery man.
Welcome my good dedes now I here thy voyce
I wepe for very swetenes of loue.
Be no more sad but euer reioyce
God seeth thy lyuynge in his trone aboue
Put on this garment to thy behoue
Whiche is wette with your teres
Or elles before god you may it mysse
Whan ye to your iourneys ende come shall.
                        Euery man.
Gentyll knowlege what do ye it call.
It is a garmente of sorowe
Fro payne it wyll you borowe
Contrycyon it is
That getteth forgyuenes
He pleasyth god passynge well.
                     Good dedes.
Euery man wyll you were it for your hele.
                     Euery man.
Now blessyd be Iesu maryes sone
For now haue I on true contrycyon
And lette vs go now without taryenge
Good dedes haue we clere our rekenynge.
                     Good dedes.
Ye in dede I haue here.
                     Euery man.
Than I trust we nede not fere
Now frendes let vs not parte in twayne.
Nay euery man that wyll we not certayne.
                     Good dedes.
Yet must thou led with the
Three persones of grete myght.
                        Euery man.
Who sholde they be.
                     Good dedes.
Dyscrecyon and strength they hyght
And thy beaute may not abyde behynde.
Also ye must call to mynde
Your fyue wyttes as for your counseylours.
                     Good dedes.
You must haue them redy at all houres.
                     Euery man.
How shall I get them hyder.
You must call them all togyder
And they wyll here you in contynent.
                        Euery man.
My frendes come hyder and be present
Dyscrecyon strengthe my fyue wyttes and beaute.
Here at your wyll we be all redy
What wyll ye that we sholde do.
                      Good dedes.
That ye wolde with euery man go
And helpe hym in his pylgrymage
Aduyse you wyll ye with him or not in that vyage.
We wyll brynge hym all thyder
To his helpe and comforte ye may beleue me.
So wyll we go with him all togyder.
                      Euery man.
Almyghty god loued myght thou be
I gyue the laude that I haue hyder brought
Strength dyscrecyon beaute & .v. wyttes lack I nought
And my good dedes with knowlege clere
All be in my company at my wyll here
I desyre no more to my besynes.
And I strength wyll by you stande in dystres
Though thou wolde I batayle fyght in the grounde.
                      V. wyttes
And though it were thrugh the worlde rounde
We wyll not departe for swete ne soure.
No more wyll I vnto dethes houre
What so euer therof befall.
Euery man aduyse you fyrst of all
Go with a good aduysement and delyberacyon
We all gyue you vertuous monycyon
That all shall be well.
                      Euery man.
My frendes harken what what I wyll tell
I praye god rewarde you in his heuen spere
Now herken all that be here
For I wyll make my testament
Here before you all present
In almes halfe my good I wyll gyue wt my handes twayne
In the way of charyte wt good entent
And the other halfe styll shall remayne
In queth to be retourned there it ought to be
This I do in despyte of the fende of hell
To go quyte out of his perell
Euer after and this daye.
Euery man herken what I saye
Go to presthode I you aduyse
And receyue of him in ony wyse
The holy sacrment and oyntement togyder
Than shortly se ye tourne agayne hyder
We wyll all abyde you here.
                      V. wittes.
Ye euery man hye you that ye redy were
There is no Emperour Kinge Duke ne Baron
That of god hath commycyon
As hath the leest preest in the worlde beynge
For of the blessyd sacramentes pure and benygne
He bereth the keyes and therof hath the cure
For mannes redempcyon it is euer sure
Whiche god for our soules medycyne
Gaue vs out of his herte with grete payne
Here in this transytory lyfe for the and me
The blessed sacramentes .vii. there be
Baptym confyrmacyon with preesthode good
And ye sacrament of goddes precyous flesshe & blod
Maryage the holy extreme vnccyon and penaunce
These seuen be good to haue in remembraunce
Gracyous sacramentes of hye deuy[n]yte.
                      Euery man.
Fayne wolde I receyue that holy body
And mekely to my ghostly fader I wyll go.
                      V. wittes.
Euery man that is the best that ye can do
God wyll you to saluacyon brynge
For preesthode excedeth all other thynge
To vs holy scrypture they do teche
And conuerteth man fro synne heuen to reche
God hath to them more power gyuen
Than to ony aungell that is in heuen
With .v. wordes he may consecrate
Goddes body in flesse and blode to make
And handleth his maker bytwene his hande
The preest byndeth and vnbyndeth all bandes
Both in erthe and in heuen
Thou mynystres all the sacramentes seuen
Though we kysse thy fete thou were worthy
Thou arte surgyon that cureth synne deedly
No remedy we fynde vnder god
Bute all onely preesthode
Euery man god gaue preest that dygnyte
And setteth them in his stede amonge vs to be
Thus be they aboue aungelles in degree.
If preestes be good it is so surely
But whan Iesu hanged on ye crosse wt grete smarte
There he gaue out of his blessyd herte
The same sacrament in grete tourment
He solde them not to vs that lorde omnypotent
Therefore saynt peter the apostell dothe saye
That Iesus curse hath all they
Whiche god theyr sauyour do by or sell
Or they for ony money do take or tell
Synfull preeste gyueth the synners example bad
Theyr chyldren sytteth by other mennes fyres I haue harde
And some haunteth womens company
With vnclene lyfe as lustes of lechery
These be with synne made blynde.
                       V. wittes.
I trust to god no suche may we fynde
Therfore let vs preesthode honour
And followe theyr doctryne for our soules socoure
We be theyr shepe and they shepeherdes be
By whome we all be kepte in suerte
Peas for yonder I se euery man come
Whiche hath made true satysfaccyon.
                       Good dedes.
Me thynke it is he in dede.
                       Every man.
Now Iesu be your alder spede
I haue receyued the sacrament for my redemcyon
And than myne extreme vnccyon
Blessyd be all they that counseyled me to take it
And now frendes let vs go with out longer respyte
I thanke god that ye haue taryed so longe
Now set eche of you on this rodde your honde
And shortely folowe me
I go before there I wolde be [            ] God be your gyde.
Euery man we wyll not fro you go
Tyll ye haue done this vyage longe.
I dyscrecyon wyll byde by you also.
And though this pylgrymage be neuer so stronge
I wyll neuer parte you fro
Euery man I wyll be as sure by the
As euer I dyde by Iudas Machabee.
                       Euery man.
Alas I am so faynt I may not stande
My lymmes vnder me doth folde
Frendes let vs not tourne agayne to this lande
Not for all the worldes golde
For in this caue must I crepe
And tourne to erth and there to slepe.
What in this graue alas.
                       Euery man.
Ye there shall ye consume more and lesse.
And what sholde I smoder here.
                       Euery man.
Ye by my fayth and neuer more appere
In this worlde lyue no more we shall
But in heuen before the hyest lorde of all.
I crosse out all this adewe by saynt Iohan
I take my tappe in my lappe and am gone.
                       Euery man.
What beaute whyder wyll ye.
Peas I am defe I loke not behynde me
Not & thou woldest gyue me all ye golde in thy chest.
                       Euery man.
Alas wherto may I truste
Beaute gothe fast awaye from me
She promysed with me to lyue and dye.
Euery man I wyll the also forsake and denye
Thy game lyketh me not at all.
                       Euery man.
Why than ye wyll forsake me all
Swete strength tary a lytell space.
Nay syr by the rode of grace
I will hye me from the fast
Though thou wepe to thy herte to brast.
                       Euery man.
Ye wolde euer byde by me ye sayd.
Ye I haue you ferre ynoughe conueyde
Ye be olde ynoughe I vnderstande
Your pylgrymage to take on hande
I repent me that I hyder came.
                       Euery man.
Strength you to dysplease I am to blame
Wyll ye breke promyse that is dette.
In fayth I care not
Thou arte but a foole to complayne
You spende your speche and wast your brayne
Go thryst the in to the grounde.
                       Euery man.
I had wende surer I shulde you haue founde
He that trusteth in his strength
She hym deceyueth at the length
Bothe strength and beaute forsaketh me
Yet they promysed me fayre and louyngly.
Euery man I will after strength be gone
As for me I will leue you alone.
                       Euery man.
Why dyscrecyon wyll ye forsake me.
Ye in fayth I wyll go fro the
For whan strength goth before
I folowe after euer more.
                       Euery man.
Yet I pray the for the loue of the trynyte
Loke in my graue ones pyteously.
Nay so nye wyll I not come
Fare well euerychone.
                       Euery man.
O all thynge fayleth saue god alone
Beaute strength and discrecyon
For whan deth bloweth his blast
They all renne fro me full fast.
                      V. wittes.
Euery man my leue now of the I take
I wyll folowe the other for here I the forsake.
                      Euery man.
Alas than may I wayle and wepe
For I took you for my best frende.
                      V. wittes.
I wyll no lenger the kepe
Now fare well and there an ende.
                      Euery man.
O Iesu helpe all hath forsaken me.
                      Good dedes.
Nay euey man I will byde with the
I wyll not forsake the in dede
Thou shalte fynde me a good frende at nede.
                      Euery man.
Gramercy good dedes now may I true frendes se
They haue forsaken me euerychone
I loued them better than my good dedes alone
Knowlege wyll ye forsake me also.
Ye euery man whan ye to deth shall go
But not yet for no maner of daunger.
                      Euery man.
Gramercy knowlege with all my herte.
Nay yet I wyll not from hens departe
Tyll I se where ye shall be come.
                      Euery man.
Me thynke alas that I must be gone
To make my rekenynge and my dettes paye
For I se my tyme is nye spent awaye
Take example all ye that this do here or se
How they that I loue best do forsake me
Excepte my good dedes that bydeth truely.
                      Good dedes.
All erthly thynges is but vanyte
Beaute strength and dyscrecyon do man forsake
Folysshe frendes and kynnesmen that fayre spake
All fleeth saue good dedes and that am I.
                      Euery man.
Haue mercy on me god moost myghty
And stande by me thou moder & mayde holy Mary
                      Good dedes.
Fere not I wyll speke for the.
                      Euery man.
Here I crye god mercy.
                      Good dedes.
Shorte oure ende and mynysshe our payne
Let vs go and neuer come agayne.
                      Euery man.
In to thy handes lorde my soule I commende
Receyue it lorde that it be not lost
As thou me boughtest so me defende
And saue me from the fendes boost
That I may appere with that blessyd hoost
That shall be saued at the day of dome
(in manus tuas) of myghtes moost
For euer (Commendo spiritum meum.)
Now hath he suffred that we all shall endure
The good dedes shall make all sure
Now hath he made endynge
Me thynketh that I here aungelles synge
And make grete Ioy and melody
Where euery mannes soule recyued shall be.
                      The aungell.
Come excellent electe spouse to Iesu
Here aboue thou shalte go
Bycause of thy syngular vertue
Now the soule is taken the body fro
Thy rekenynge is crystall clere
Now shalte thou in to the heuenly spere
Vnto the whiche all ye shall come
That lyueth well before the daye of dome.
This morall men may haue in mynde
Ye hearers take it of worth olde and yonge
And forsake pryde for he deceyueth you in the ende
And remembre beaute .v. wyttes strength & dy[s]crecion
They all at the last do euery man forsake
Saue his good dedes there dothe he take
But be ware and they be small
Before god he hath no helpe at all
None excuse may be there for euery man
Alas how shall he do than
For after dethe amendes may no man make
For than mercy and pyte doth hym forsake
If his rekenynge be not clere whan he doth come
God wyll saye (ite maledicti in ignem eternum)
And he that hath his accounte hole and sounde
Hye in heuen he shall be crounde
Vnto whiche place god brynge vs all thyder
That we may lyue body and soule togyder
Therto helpe the trynyte
Amen saye ye for saynt charyte.
F     I     N     I     S.

Thus endeth this morall playe of euery man.
Imprynted at London in Poules
Chyrche yarde by me
Johnn Skot.

image: printer's cut of John Skot.British Museum.

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