The most wonderful and plea­saunt History of Titus and Gisip­pus, whereby is fully declared the figure of perfect frendshyp, drawen into English metre.

By Edwarde Lewicke.

Anno. 1562.

Frendshyppe is a vertue,
For all men to take holde,
Frendshypp ioyned with vertue,
Passeth syluer and golde.
As fyer and heate
Are in seperable alwaye
So are the hartes of frendes
From daye to daye.
THere was in the city of Rome,
A noble man hight fulnius:
A Senatour of great wisdome,
One of the chiefest the truth is thus.
He had a sonne named Titus,
An apter child could not be found,
(As witty men did their discus)
For learnyng, going on the ground.
Fulnius loue did so abound,
To Titus for his natiue grace:
That to athenes he sent him rounde,
Because he should learninge enbrace.
Wherof Athenes was the best place.
With one Chremes, Titus did host,
Who had a sonne so like of face
To Titus that Chremes [...].
Knew not his sonne, his marke was lost?
For their statures and age were one,
Their garmentes both a like did cost,
On all the earth lo there were none:
So like of beautye blood and bone.
Gysippus hight Chrimes sonnes name:
Together still wolde they haue gone,
To scole, to meales, to play or game.
Their willes & wits both, like did frame,
In oue doctrine they did delite,
What one did tone, the very same,
The other loued with all his might,
[Page] In learning they were iustly pight,
For yer that they much time did spende,
In Athenes was not manie a wight,
Would in learning with them contend [...].
At last when God by deth did sende,
For Chremes, in his auntient age,
Gysippus goodes was without ende,
He was of noble parentage,
And eke a propre personage:
Wherfore his frendes did him allure,
And stil prouoke to mariage,
Saying thereby you may be sure.
Your progenie shall long endure,
To your great honour and comfort,
Thus daily they did him procure.
But Gisippus (for to be short,)
To their counsell woulde not resort:
For he was wedded to studie,
Philosophy was all his sport,
Except Titus, his frende onelse:
Whom he so loued, that (well nie)
For other thinges he did not care.
Titus also (a good cause whye)
Would for Gisippus his life spare,
Suche frendship hath bene sene but rare.
Gisippus fearinge that a wife,
Should cause their frēdship sone to ware,
Whiche he had leuer lose his life.
Then with his frend to fall at strife:
Fearing left through mariage also,
Which caused him to be penife,
Philosophie he should forgoe,
(And leaue his scole alas for wo)
Which thoughts made him for to abstain
As much as in him lay to doe,
His kinsemens aduise to refraine.
But yet they did him so constraine,
By calling on so importaunt,
That nedes he must (though to his paine
Seing they cried incessaunt)
To all their requestes throughlie graunt:
Titus also did him desire,
That he would not be repugnaunt,
But doe as they did him require.
Or els said he their feruent ire,
Against you alway shalbe bent,
As furious as the fretting fire:
Therfore it is expedient,
(Deare frende Gysippus) to content
Your selfe: and set your hart at rest,
Chouse you a wyfe by mine assent,
Euen such a one as you like best.
Gysippus with this meke request,
To his frend Titus did agree:
What nede much talke to be exprest,
His frendes a maiden did forsee,
[Page] No meter match they thought mought be
Then she, for suche a worthy wight,
In beautye bright, peareles was she,
Sophronia this mayden hight.
When they and her frendes had full right
The couenaunt of this marriage knitte,
Gysippus then to haue the sight
Of this lady they thought it fitt,
And saide also, that best were it,
For him, this mayden to beholde,
Whom when he sawe in shape and wit,
Like him, his ioyes could not be tolde.
He louid her so that oft he woulde
Resort vnto her secretlye,
Leauing Titus his louer olde
Behinde, applying his studye.
Yet at the last he did descrye,
himselfe, and told Titus his minde.
How that her gentle courtesye.
And beautye cleare, had him enclinde.
So on a time he had assinde,
To haue his frende Titus with him,
To se Sephronia so kinde,
Which to Gysippus semed trim,
And as well shapt in euery lim.
When Titus came in her presence,
His will aboue his witt did swim.
[Page] To se her good entelligence.
And how at their engredience,
She did Gisippus entertaine,
With courtesye and reuerence.
With rare and sober talke righte plaine,
So well placed and not in vaine,
The swete and pleasaunt countenaunce,
That in her visage did remaine,
With louelye lookes and temperaunce.
So that he fell into a traunce,
Beholding of her swete visage.
And sore abashed at the chaunce,
That frendshippe could it not asswage,
Nor yet Philosophy the rage?
Of pricking with blinde Cupides dart,
For in beholding her image,
Her beautye perced him to the heart.
But yet he shewed not his smart,
Till they to their lodginges were gone:
Then Titus drewe himselfe apart,
His miserie for to bemone:
And when he was himselfe alone,
Uppon a bed there downe he lay,
For other helpe he loked none,
But onely death his care to stay.
Ther cursed he the time and daye,
That he into this world was borne,
[Page] O deth saide he, fetch me away,
The com­plaininge of Titus.
would god I were with tirantes torne,
O that Rhynos with his sharpe horne,
Would rid me of my miserye:
Oh cursid Titus and forlorne,
Rhinos is a certaine beast in the coun­treise of India ha­uinge a sharpe horne gro wing out of the nos trilles of his nose, and an o­ther in his neck, this beast is as big as an Elephant and is na­turally an enemye to the Ele­phant.
Why swaruest thou so sore awry.
Oh traytour Titus well worthy,
For thy treason to Gysippus,
A miserable death to dye.
Thus wept and wayled poore Titus.
No man in the cause that coulde descus,
Nor whereof his care did depende,
But alwayes Titus would say thus,
Would god my life were at an ende.
With that the salt teares would dessend,
Downe by his chekes like flouds of raine,
The depe sightes frō his hart wold wend,
Which well declared his mortall paine.
But at the last for to be plaine,
For lacke of slepe and sustinaunce,
Soe feblenes did him constrayne,
To kepe his bed this was his chaunce.
He was so hurt with Cupides launce,
That nought his paines mought pacifie.
When Gysippus (to his greuaunce)
Hearde that Tytus was like to dye,
He ran in all hast by and by,
God knoweth with a wofull heart,
[Page] But yet he loked cherefullye,
To comfort him as was his part.
But when he saw the coloure swart.
Which had bene like the ruddye rose,
Titus said he, whēce cometh your smart,
Deare frende to me se you disclose.
And though that I do spende and lose,
My goodes and landes your care to slake,
My life from me will I depose,
Deare Titus for your onely sake.
Then Titus as his hart had brake,
The teares afresh he did renue.
Which made Gisippus heart to ake,
Seing more doloure still ensue.
Deare frend said he no more rescue,
Nor hide your mortall paines from me:
But shew that I may them subdue,
Yf any helpe for you may be.
Thus wise Titus constrained he,
Which all blushing and ashamed,
Talking with great difficultye,
Shamefastly holding downe his hed.
My most deare louing frend he fed,
The wordes of Titus to Gi [...]sippus.
Withdrawe youre gentle courtesie,
Let no mo teares for me be shed,
But slay me rather where I lye.
Or otherwise on me hardlye,
[Page] Take vengeaunce most writched villaine
And of all other most worthy,
I am to suffer death and paine,
For wheras God of nature plaine,
In one likenes hath both vs made,
So had he trapped in one traine,
Our wils that we in weale should wade.
So that the like recourse and trade,
Of concord that hath bene betwene
Us two, ye and so stedfastlye layde,
I do suppose hath neuer bene,
The like in louers euer sene:
Yet notwithstanding all this loue,
This faith this truste is wasted cleane,
A womans looke hath gone aboue.
Alas what wicked spright did moue,
Your minde to bring me in presence,
Of her whom ye (as I can proue)
Beholding beawtye and prudence,
Could not with hold by no defence,
Youre minde from rauishinge with luste,
Alas where was youre sapyence,
That you in such thinges wold me trust.
Wist you not that our windes were iust?
Forgat ye quight our like nature,
Which thinge ye ought to haue discusse?
This is the cause I you ensure
[Page] Of this mischiefe that I endure.
Youre truste haue trapt me in the rayes,
That issue from her eyen demure,
Remembring eke her vertuous layes.
Which perceth my heart a thousād waies
So that of all thinges I desire,
Sharpe death to end my dolefull dayes,
Confusion eke to be my hire.
Sith I against you did conspire,
Such treason so vnnaturall:
Desiring so iustlye youre ire,
Shame and reproche perpetuall.
Unworthy am I for to call
Or say Gisippus is my frende,
Syth frendshippe in me is so small,
With those wordes Titus made & ende,
The sighes that from his heart did wend
So heauie were and so profounde,
The teares from his eyes dessend,
As he to salt drapes mought redounde
Gysippus then with cherefull sound,
And with a louelye countenaunce,
Not raginge rashlye in that stounde,
Although he sorowed at the chaunce:
The aun­swere of Gisippus to Titus.
But with a frendly affiaunce.
Enbracinge him and sothlye saide,
Why Titus is this your greuaunce,
[Page] That you so long from me haue stayed?
I haue (it can not be denayed)
Offended as I here confesse,
In that whiche you did me enbrayde,
I acknowledge my folishnesse.
Deare frende Titus, ye are faultlesse,
For truth it is that I forgate,
(In f [...]we wordes brefely to expresse,)
The vnitye of oure astate.
For what I loue you do not hate,
But loue it in as high degree:
Our constellacion or fate
Is one, I knowe it so to be.
Therefore the fault lyes all in mee,
(No man the contrarye can proue,
Sith that I caused you to see,
Sophronia whom I do loue.)
Sith that ye haue so stoutlye stroue,
Against the powre of Cupides might,
Which hath so many nobles droue,
And slaine them quite in his dispight?
Thinke you (deare frend) my wit so light,
That I knowe not how that venus,
Wil woūd those, against whom she fight,
With deadly dent? yes yes Titus.
Haue ye not well stroue that haue thus,
[Page] Resisted suche a great Goddes,
Almost to death for Gysippus?
Was not this very noblenes?
What frendship could you more expresse,
Then to withstand such violence?
Am I so vertuous to distresse,
Or stoppe the heauenly influence.
Preordinate by prouidence,
Diuine? what were (if I so thought)
My time of longe and large expence,
What were my learning dearlie bought,
Or yet the wisdome I haue sought?
In dede Titus I loued the maide,
As much as any wise man mought,
And had my harte vnto her slayde.
I was of her better apaid.
Then of all my treasure and land,
But yet what though, what may be sa [...],
Sith that your loue (I understand)
Doth farre surmount if it were scand,
A boue the compasse of nature?
I knowe you can not slake the band
Of venus, it is knitte so sure.
What shal I iudge, a mind vnpure,
That you do this of wanton lust?
Nay Titus I will not procure,
Such thinges against you so vniust,
[Page] Deare frend in this you may me trust.
For how shoulde I of right contend,
Except that good reason should rust,
And soo oure frendshippe come to an end:
Sith that we neuer yet did spende,
One worde in malice daye nor night:
So to be still else god defende,
And bringe the errour sone to light.
Nay nay Titus I haue done righte,
The prouidence of god onelye,
Hath wrought this thing with his great might
That she shuld be your owne lady
For such loue entreth not but by,
A disposicion diuine,
Into a wise mans memorye:
I can it no wayes els define.
Whereat if I should now repine,
I shoulde seme stout and obstinate,
Against that god doth determine,
And rightes from you to seperate.
Which neuer shall early nor late,
Be found in me therefore I say,
Deare frend Titus and louing mate,
Let not this chaunce your mind dismay.
Put sorow from you quight awaye,
Reioice now and no more be sad,
Let not this wo your welth decay,
[Page] For certeinely I am right glad
That such a wyfe is to be had,
In those dayes not withstan­ding anie ceremony done at the church, the mar­riage was not con­firmed vn till night that the husband had put a ringe on the brides finger, and losed the girdle of hir vir­ginitie, &ech of thē promissyd loyalte one to a­nother.
And that it is my chaunce to find,
Her, with whom your life may be lad,
In ioy according to your minde,
Whereby you maye encrease your kinde,
To the comforte of your lignage,
I haue to you my right resinde,
Of her: therefore your old courage.
Take vnto you and your visage
all to be wept, wash it right cleane,
For now the daye of oure mariage
approcheth nigh, therefore sum meane,
Let vs (this time and that betwene)
Deuise, how that you may attaine,
Your whole desires which haue bene,
The onely patron of your paine.
Marke wel, this is mine aduice plaine,
You knowe well that our shape is so,
That in like garmentes of vs twaine,
Few men do scant know who is who.
Although that we together go.
Much les a part and liklye dight
Shall they desearne ech of vs two,
And brifelye of vs iudge the right.
Also ye know that vntill night,
[Page] The marriage is not confirmed,
That they their trouthes haue playnlye plight,
And that a ring there prepared,
On her finger be fastened,
Her girdle then must be vntide,
And then may they two go to bed,
And perfourme the partes of a bride.
This meanes for you I will prouide:
Untill that day be past and gone,
In sum close place you shall abide,
Beinge prepared for you alone.
When night is come feately anone.
To her chamber your self conuey,
Of maides nor wifes there is not one,
that for our shap shall you bewray.
Then quicklye do your selfe vnray,
And vno bed, bouldly prepare,
Your ring on her finger assay.
Louse her girdle and do not spare,
But yet be circumspect and ware,
That no fonde thing in you appeare,
Whereby you may augment your care,
Now frend Titus be of good cheare.
Let no thinges be for you to deare,
Take good refections and solace,
For to amend your lothlye leare,
Your wan and pale coloured face,
That it be not in any cace,
[Page] The cause of your discouering.
I knowe within this litle space,
That you your pourpose thus hauinge.
My frendes will hate me and thinking
Me to disgrace my familye.
But let god worck I care nothing,
Though I be had in obloquye,
Encreasing your felicity.
At those wordes Titus then began
To mone, as on my fantasie,
He though Gysippus spake not than
But thought he did a vision scan,
As one adremed in a slepe,
Lay still as an abashed man.
But when he sawe Gysippus wepe,
And teares by his chekes down did stepe,
Perceyuinge loue in explicable:
He gaue him thankes wt groninges depe,
For his kindnesse incomperable.
And said it were more reasonable,
That such vnkinde wretches as I,
Should perish with some death notable▪
Then that you should sustaine thereby,
Anye reproche or iniurie.
Eftsone Gysippus did protest:
And kissed Titus louingly,
Saying deare frend be you at rest.
For loke what thinges I haue protest,
Faine would I haue accomplished,
And thereto will I do my best,
At those wordes Titus perceaued,
That his frendshipe was not fained,
And starte vp then as one not sicke,
But from sleape he had waked,
his blood resorted sum what quicke.
For good eates then he did not sticke,
But toke thinges his health to restore,
So that shortelye he waxed tricke,
In figure as he was before,
To health was turned all his sore,
Shorte tale to make, the mariage drue,
The widdinge wedes, Gysippus wore,
Of costly coloured, cloth of hue.
And did as vnto him was due,
His frendes he accompanied,
The damuseles house they did cusue,
Where they were ioyouslye feasted.
Gysippus was entertayned,
So louingly of his fayre maide,
That all the people there praised,
To se that sight were well apayde.
And ech vnto his felow saide,
(Praysing the vertue and beautye,
Wherwith those parsons were araide.
[Page] And eke their gentle courtesie)
That neuer erst they could espye,
Their vertues rare, so excellente,
In anye creatures saue onelye,
Those two which then were there present
What nede much talke for to be spent,
The wedding day away did passe.
Their frendes also, away they went,
The bride eke as the custome was,
Was brought with many a louely las,
To a chamber most freshlye dight,
Gysippus then returned as,
He tould Titus he would that night.
Then Titus he stept in full light,
Anon to bed he did prepare,
The maide assone eke as she might,
Lay downe by Titus naked bare,
Not knowing of the subtill stare,
But thought it had bene Gisippus,
Then Titus ending all his care,
Demaunded of her saying thus.
Sophronia floure of Uenus,
Do you loue me and not disdayne,
That in this bargayne betwene vs,
I shall your husband styll remaine?
In helth and welth, in ioy and payne?
Wherewith she smiled all blushinge,
[Page] Her maydenhode lyke to refrayne,
With eyes half laughing, half murning.
To his reqnestes she affirminge,
Eftsone he asked her also,
Yf that she wolde receyue his ringe,
Anone she dyd consent theretoe,
Her girlde then he dyd vndoe,
His ringe he put vpon her hande,
What elles he dyd, non, but they twoe
Knewe that, yet this I vnderstande.
That all the treasure in the lande,
Could not haue pleased him half so well,
As dyd the lousinge of the bande,
Whiche made him suffre paines of hell.
When morrow came, the truth to tell.
Gisippus thought expedient.
That people knew what had befell.
Wherefore bye his owne appointment.
For all the noble men he sent,
Home to his place of habitation,
Where Titus came for this entent,
In breake his mynde with an oration,
And after their good recreation,
He sayd to them, my deare frendes all,
The ora­tion of Titus to [...] Ath­ [...]ensis.
Ye no [...]s of this famous nation,
A wondrrous thinge declare I shall.
What is in Athenes now befall,
[Page] To youre perpetuall prick and prayse▪
Of loue, whose power is misticall,
Wherefore he ought to take alwayse,
Great comfort fith in those your dayse,
Such loue amonge you doth remayne,
As hath bene seene in no countrayse,
So well approuid with ease and payne.
For what more prayse is their certayne,
Then constance and beneuolence.
Without whō no kyngdome may raine,
Uoyde of muche inconuenience:
Where constance hath the preminence,
The countrey is in muche solace,
Through it they haue alwaye defence,
And comfort in eche heauye cace.
What nede I tarye longer space,
In this contectinge mine entent,
You know from Rome vnto this place
I was by my deare parantes sent.
And streight to Chremes house I went,
UUhere that I founde by aduenture,
Gisippus propre and prudent.
Of mine owne age this is most sure.
We were so lyke of moode demure,
That none of his frendes neither mine,
(It was so harde and so obscure,)
Coulde say to vs (loe) this is thine,
[Page] But as we shewed by sum sine,
Oure personages to declare:
What mutuall loue eight yeares or nine,
Hath bene betwene vs euery where?
Ye your owne selfes the witnes are,
Which haue beheld and sene vs both,
This to affirme right well I dare,
Yet certainly I would be loth,
To speake such thinges should make you wroth,
But for my part by your licence,
I will declare the verye troth,
Desiring you of pacience.
When that (by diuine prouidence)
My father dyed who left to me,
Possessions such, that in expence,
Few with me mought compared be,
Beinge eke of so high degre:
Also I being called home,
By my frendes whom (right wel knowe ye
Are of the noblest men in Rome.
And men also of ripe wisdome▪
Offring me the highest dignitye:
But when they saw I would not come,
At their requestes they maruayled why.
And wild my mother instantlye,
(To whose beck nature hath me bent)
In her letters to certifye,
[Page] Me, that therbye I mought relent.
Whose blotted billes with teares be spēt,
Accusing me of vnkindenes,
For my beinge so longe absent,
From her, sith she is comfortles,
I say (in few wordes to expresse)
Could not withold or pull me back,
From Gisippus, although riches,
I was behest neuer to lack.
But liesier to be clothed with sack
I had, then parte from such a frende,
For wordely welth oft windes to wrack,
But faithfull frendship hath none ende,
I can not from his presence wende,
Except he thereto will agre:
As long as I haue breath to spende,
His seruaunt gladlye will I be:
Ye more gladly I promise ye,
Then of Rome to be the consul,
My loue requited well hath he,
In sauinge me from death so dull,
And of all other most painefull,
No death that may be so cruell,
Though one were torne we beare or bull,
No paygnes more dreadfull are in hell.
You merualle I perceyue right well,
[Page] What personne owth me such malice,
Or who dare be so ferse and fell,
To attempt such an enterprice,
(Reiectinge natures preindice)
Against me being a Romayne,
And of the noblest blod certice,
Who think ye thē would me haue slaine:
I perceaue ye would know full faine,
Who wrought me such cruell dispite,
It was loue, yea, I tel you plaine,
Which (as your Poetes do resite)
Did wound your gods with loues delite,
The dis­cripcion of the mighye poure of loue.
Made Iupiter chaunce his figure,
Like a bull or swan full white,
Or to sum other thinges obscure.
The same loue which (I am full sure)
Made Hercules spin on a rock,
Sittinge among maidens demure,
Wearing next to his skin a smok,
And vpon that a womans frock,
Yea though he were so puissaunt,
That through his strength & sturdy strok,
He could slay Monstre and Giaunt.
The same loue which made assemblaunt,
The Grecien lordes in fieldes of Troy,
With Geldinges gay, & Glaues gallaunt
Which did the Traianes sore anoy
[Page] In ten yeres Grekes did them distroy,
And beate their citye downe to grounde,
Perpetuallye ended their ioy,
Their honour neuer shall resounde.
The same loue I say did me wounde,
Sodaynlye with such vehemence,
(Against whose assaultes may be founde,
No helpe (no comforte nor defence)
That in shorte space with violence
Of feruent tourmentes I had died,
Had not Gysippus resistence,
The bande of my sorow vntied.
I se you would faine haue discried,
Who I so loued: without delaye,
With truth you shal be certyfied,
It is (I wyll it not denay)
Sophronia the lady gay,
Whom Gisippus had chose to wife,
And whom he loued I dare say,
As much as he dyd his owne lyfe.
But when he sawe that Cupides knife,
Had hurt me with a healthles bloe,
Most frendly then, to end my strife,
Perceauynge (as I trust you doe.)
That gods prouision wrought it soe,
Through his deuine almightie grace,
That she shoulde be my wyfe, wheretoe
[Page] He gladly geuinge roume and place.
True frendshyp he dyd more enbrace,
Then womans loue thereto forced,
And not constrayned by Cupides mace,
(From whom no way is to be fled)
As I was, wherefore he graunted
To me, his right in the damosell,
And euen I Titus dyd her wed,
Her shamefastnes I dyd expell.
I laye with her, this marke ye wel,
Confirminge the matrimonie.
At those wordes they began to swell,
And loked most disdaynefullye,
Upon Gisippus by and bye.
Then Titus spake to them sayinge,
Leaue of your frettinge and furye,
Leaue youre spitefull menasinge.
Leaue (I say) your murmuringe,
Leaue of youre greuous countenaunce,
For Gisippus hath done nothinge,
That shalbe to your hinderaunce.
But your honour he doth aduaunce.
For well he knew, that he mought finde,
Another mayden that (perchaunce)
Mought be more better to his minde.
But such a frend to him enclind,
Hauynge respect to myne astate,
[Page] So lyke to him in euery kynde)
As I was, was not ventilate.
Also the mayde doth not abate,
Or take dispergement in her blood,
For (no dispraise to my deare mate)
Her mariage nowe is euen as good.
And better if ye vnderstoode,
All that doth to me appertayne,
For I exceade her in liuelood,
And passe her in possessions playne.
The noblest men that doth remayne,
In Rome and in all Italye,
Did wil myne alyaunce verye vayne,
Wherefore ye ought to magnifie.
Gisippus, and be not auctrie
With him, but to exto (I saye)
his kindnes towardes me, whereby
you, and your citie safelye maye
Be descended, and kept awaye:
I saye he hath well deserued,
A monument of golde so gaye,
To be set vp and honoured.
His loue ought to be remembred,
For good that it may to you bringe
But yf you be not parswaded,
Deuising anye euyll thinge,
To him after my departinge,
[Page] I make auowe to the creature,
And maker of ech thing liuinge,
That with the inuincible poure.
Of Romaines, to your dishonour,
Perpetuall reproch and blame,
I will resort for his socoure,
In such wyse that your fatall fame,
Shall sounde in all greece to your shame.
Therwith all them that were present,
Dessembled their malice with game,
As though they had bene well content.
Sone after by the appoinctement,
Of all the Senatours of Rome,
Titus was sente for to frequent,
An office fit for such a grome.
Then he prepared to go home,
But to depart it did him greue,
From Gisippus, also to whom,
He graunted gladly for to geue,
Halfe of his substaunce to atcheue,
Onlye to haue his companye.
But Gisippus did wel perceue,
How nedefull and necessarye,
His counsell was to that citye,
Wherfore he would not therhens wend,
Although aboue all thinges earthlye,
He ioyed in Titus his frend.
When Titus with his ladye hend,
UUere gone to Rome for their repast,
Gysippus ioyes were at an end,
His frendes and felowship did wast.
His kinsmen spared not in hast,
To exclude him from their counsell,
And did prohibite at the last,
That he should not in Athenes dwell.
And yet with this they were not well,
But (comptinge his loue vaine frendship)
From all his landes they did him expell,
Out of his robes they did him whipp,
And out of Athenes did him whippe,
Full poorely went Gisippus tho,
Hauing nought but a stasse and skrippe,
And nedes a begginge must he go.
Gysippus wandringe to and fro,
Could finde no man him to sustaine,
This was his chaunce, alas for who
Necessitye did him constr [...]ine.
Thus late welthye he did remaine,
And now banished his owne countray,
Neuer must he come there againe,
His kind heart brought him to that bay.
He wandred he wist not which way,
Lamentably still did he mone,
He knewe no place where he might stay,
For hope of helpe he hears of none.
[Page] At last his pleasures past and gone,
To his greate grefe, he remembred,
With Titus, for whome he alone,
Had all those damages suffered.
To goe to Roome he concluded,
His euill fortune to declare
To Titus, whom he supposed
Would for him sum redres prepare
So then with hunger cold and care.
To Roome he ran, through mud & mire,
When he came thither pore and bare,
For Titus house he did enquire.
When he sawe it, he did retire,
Because it semed so princely,
He was ashamed to aspire,
Or in such rayment approch nie,
But stoode that if Titus came by,
Himself he mought to him present,
Thus thinking, he and his ladye
Came walking forth incontinent.
Gisippus was so ragd and rent,
That when Titus did him behold,
He knew him not, but forth he went,
Not regarding his garmentes old.
Gisippus hart was then full cold.
Thinking that Titus did him hate,
Because no comfort shew he would,
[Page] To him which stoode so at his gate.
Then in a sorie simple state,
Gisippus thence away did trudge.
Cursinge his chaunce infortunate.
Oh lord thought he, what mā wold iudge
Titus to haue bene suche a snudge,
For whome I suffre all this smart.
Gisippus thus at him did grudge,
Thinking for euer to depart.
From Roome, and wander the desert
As a beast with madnes possest,
But yet he was well faine to start
(Being with werines opprest)
Into an old barne to take rest:
Where he fallinge flat on the ground,
Drew out his knife and thought it best,
To geue himself a deadly wounde.
But wisdome did his wil so drounde,
That from that act it did him kepe.
Until he fell into a sounde,
Or (as god would, as he did slepe)
Into a sad and slumbring slepe,
His knife wherwith he would haue slain
himself, downe by his side did stepe.
In the meane time a thefe certaine.
Which was a commen Ruffian playne:
[Page] And had both robbed and slaine a man,
Thought in that barne for to remaine,
To hide him selfe that night. But whan
He sawe a wretch bewept and wan.
On slep and a knife by his side,
He toke the knife, and quicklye than,
Towardes the dead man, he did glide.
Into his wound, both depe and wide,
(Which at that time did freshlye blede)
He put the knife thinkinge to hide,
His owne vile acte, and mischeuous dede,
And brought it all blodye with spede,
To poore Gysippus where he laye,
Aslepe, and put it (without drede)
Into his hand and went his way.
Sone after whan that it was daye,
The dead man being founde: anon
The officers all in araye,
Made earnest search for the felon,
And finding in the barne vpon,
The grounde, a man on slepe which ha [...]
A blody knife: suspection
They had, thinking him to be mad.
And waked him of his slepe so bad,
Saying arise thou murderarre,
With that Gysippus was right glad,
Thinking his death not to be farre.
[Page] Before thy Senate to the barre,
They brought him to haue his iudgemēt
With billes and battes like men of war,
Yet he (poore soule) was innocent.
Titus at that time was present
Who beholding Gisippus well,
Lept from the bench incontinent.
And downe vpon his knees he fell
Sayinge geue eare what I shall tell
Ye nobles all, and then discus,
This haynous murther so cruell
Committed was, by me Titus.
For old malice (the truth is thus)
Which I a longe time did him owe,
For thinges that haue bene betwene vs,
This straunger (as ye may well knowe,
Is desperate (god knoweth howe)
And doth this act gladly expresse
His care with deth to ouerthrowe,
Yet certainlye he is giltlesse:
Reward me for my wickednes,
For I it is that ought to dye.
Gisippus did again profes,
(Seing Titus was contrary
To his aspecte) and still did crye.
To the Senatours to proceade,
[Page] In sudgement on him bie and by,
For I said he haue done the dede.
Titus denied it in that stede:
Thus they a long time did contend
Ech of them for the others mede:
Who for thoffence should his life ende,
Abundantlye teares they did spend,
The Senatours abashed were,
None wist whereof it did depende,
That those two such frendship did beare.
The very these, bichaunce was there,
Amid the prease that time standinge,
Who when he heard with snob and teare
Those two personnes thus disputinge.
Which both were giltles of the thinge:
His heart could not make his tong slake,
To kepe truth from discoueringe,
Wherfore quite through ye prease he brak.
Before the Senate thus he spake,
Most noble fathers euery one,
The con­fession of the these.
I am approched peace to make:
I am knowen to be a persone.
Whiche haue manye bie theft vndone,
Titus you knowe assuredlye,
Pleasure in malice he hath none,
But is of much simplisitie:
This straunger eke which standeth by,
Semeth to be with care compact,
And disperate god knoweth why,
His wittes from him being subtract:
They both are gilties of this acte,
The truth plainly I will disclose,
I did that most vngracious fact,
The man from his life to depose.
I smot him that he neuer rose,
Then to the barne Iran full right,
Thinking to hide me from my foes:
But when I sawe this wofull wight,
A slepe, thinking myselfe to quight
A policy I thought full good
I tooke his knife, and did it dight,
Both hafte & blade, in the mannes blood.
When I had done, in that mad woode,
I brought his blodye knife agayne,
This feate my reason vnderstode
Was best your iudgement to refrayne.
But concience now, doth me constrayne,
To put the giltlesse out of dout,
At your iugdement, will I remaine
Abiding death, though it be stout.
The Senate then and all the rout,
Reioyced and toke good comfort,
[Page] In all the court, there was a shout,
Ther neuer was a gladder sort,
To make the tale, more brefe and shorte,
Gysippus was, discouered,
Titus did their frendshippe report,
The felon, he was pardoned.
Titus beinge aduertised
Of his most deare frendes banishment,
He vowed to be auenged,
On Athenes yer long time were spent,
So then he tooke incontinent,
His frend Gysippus with him home,
Where that the lady excellent,
Most louingly, bad him welcome.
His fame was spred throughout al Rome
With reuerence, and with honoure,
For his frendship, and his wisdome,
And for his louely behauioure:
Titus beinge a Senatoure,
With assistince, he did prepare,
A mightye armie to sucoure
His frend and to aduenge his care.
To Athenes ferslye he did fare,
With all his souldiours on a thronge,
On his frendes foes he did not spare,
But with a courage stoute and stronge,
[Page] Requited al Gisippus wronge,
Restoringe him his goodes certayne
Stablishinge him, his frendes amonge
And so returned to Roome agayne.

Imprinted at London by Thomas Hacket, and are to be solde at hys shop in Lumbarde streete.

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