So furiously she strooke in her first heat,
Whiles with long fight on foot he breathlesse was,
That she him forced backward to retreat,
And yeeld vnto her weapon way to pas:
Whose raging rigour neither steele nor bras
Could stay, but to the tender flesh it went,
And pour'd the purple bloud forth on the gras;
That all his mayle yriv'd, and plates yrent,
Shew'd all his bodie bare vnto the cruell dent.
At length when as he saw her hastie heat
Abate, and panting breath begin to fayle,
He through long sufferance growing now more great,
Rose in his strength, and gan her fresh assayle,
Heaping huge strokes, as thicke as showre of hayle,
And lashing dreadfully at euery part,
As if he thought her soule to disentrayle.
Ah cruell hand, and thrise more cruell hart,
That workst such wrecke on her, to whom thou dearest art...
Thus long they trac'd, and trauerst to and fro,
Sometimes pursewing, and sometimes pursewed,
Still as aduantage they espyde thereto:
But toward th'end Sir Arthegall renewed
His strength still more, but she still more decrewed.
At last his lucklesse hand he heau'd on hie,
Hauing his forces all in one accrewed,
And therewith stroke at her so hideouslie,
That seemed nought but death mote be her destinie.
The wicked stroke vpon her helmet chaunst,
And with the force, which in it selfe it bore,
Her ventayle shard away, and thence forth glaunst
A downe in vaine, ne harm'd her any more.
With that her angels face, vnseene afore,
Like to the ruddie morne appeard in sight,
Deawed with siluer drops, through sweating sore;
But somewhat redder, then beseem'd aright,
Through toylesome heate and labour of her weary fight.
And round about the same, her yellow heare
Hauing through stirring loosd their wonted band,
Like to a golden border did appeare,
Framed in goldsmithes forge with cunning hand:
Yet goldsmithes cunning could not vnderstand
To frame such subtile wire, so shinie cleare.
For it did glister like the golden sand,
The which Pactolus with his waters shere,
Throwes forth vpon the riuage round about him nere.
And as his hand he vp againe did reare,
Thinking to worke on her his vtmost wracke,
His powrelesse arme benumbd with secret feare
From his reuengefull purpose shronke abacke,
And cruell sword out of his fingers slacke
Fell downe to ground, as if the steele had sence,
And felt some ruth, or sence his hand did lacke,
Or both of them did thinke, obedience
To doe to so diuine a beauties excellence.
And he himselfe long gazing thereupon,
At last fell humbly downe vpon his knee,
And of his wonder made religion,
Weening some heauenly goddesse he did see,
Or else vnweeting, what it else might bee;
And pardon her besought his errour frayle,
That had done outrage in so high degree:
Whilest trembling horrour did his sense assayle,
And made ech member quake, and manly hart to quayle.
Nathelesse she full of wrath for that late stroke,
All that long while vpheld her wrathfull hand,
With fell intent, on him to bene ywroke,
And looking sterne, still ouer him did stand,
Threatning to strike, vnlesse he would withstand:
And bad him rise, or surely he should die.
But die or liue for nought he would vpstand
But her of pardon prayd more earnestlie,
Or wreake on him her will for so great iniurie...
But Scudamour now woxen inly glad,
That all his gealous feare he false had found,
And how that Hag his loue abused had
With breach of faith and loyaltie vnsound,
The which long time his grieued hart did wound,
He thus bespake; Certes Sir Artegall,
I ioy to see you lout so low on ground,
And now become to liue a Ladies thrall,
That whylome in your minde wont to despise them all.
Soone as she heard the name of Artegall,
Her hart did leape, and all her hart-strings tremble,
For sudden ioy, and secret feare withall,
And all her vitall powres with motion nimble,
To succour it, themselues gan there assemble,
That by the swift recourse of flushing blood
Right plaine appeard, though she it would dissemble,
And fayned still her former angry mood,
Thinking to hide the depth by troubling of the flood...
And you Sir Artegall, the saluage knight,
Henceforth may not disdaine, that womans hand
Hath conquered you anew in second fight:
For whylome they haue conquerd sea and land,
And heauen it selfe, that nought may them withstand,
Ne henceforth be rebellious vnto loue,
That is the crowne of knighthood, and the band
Of noble minds deriued from aboue,
Which being knit with vertue, neuer will remoue.
And you faire Ladie knight, my dearest Dame,
Relent the rigour of your wrathfull will,
Whose fire were better turn'd to other flame;
And wiping out remembrance of all ill,
Graunt him your grace, but so that he fulfill
The penance, which ye shall to him empart:
For louers heauen must passe by sorrowes hell.
Thereat full inly blushed Britomart;
But Artegall close smyling ioy'd in secret hart.
*sniffle* IT'S SO CUTE