Stanza 146


e che coloro li quali me hanno reputato crudele e iniquo e bestiale conoscano che ciò che io faceva a antiveduto fine operava, vogliendoti insegnar d'esser moglie e a loro di saperla tenere, e a me partorire perpetua quiete mentre teco a vivere avessi: il che, quando venni a prender moglie, gran paura ebbi che non m'intervenisse, e per ciò, per prova pigliarne, in quanti modi tu sai ti punsi e trafissi.

and that those, who have deemed me cruel and unjust and insensate, should know that what I did was done of purpose aforethought, for that I was minded to give both thee and them a lesson, that thou mightst learn to be a wife, and they in like manner might learn how to take and keep a wife, and that I might beget me perpetual peace with thee for the rest of my life; whereof being in great fear, when I came to take a wife, lest I should be disappointed, I therefore, to put the matter to the proof, did, and how sorely thou knowest, harass and afflict thee.


Sciant qui contrarium crediderunt me curiosum atque experientem esse, non impium; probasse coniugem, non damnasse; occultasse filios, non mactasse».

Let all know, who thought the contrary, that I am curious and given to experiments, but am not impious: I have tested my wife, not condemned her; I have hidden my children, not destroyed them."


And folk that ootherweys han seyd of me,
I warne hem wel that I have doon this deede
For no malice, ne for no crueltee,
But for t'assaye in thee thy wommanheede,
And not to sleen my children - God forbeede! -
But for to kepe hem pryvely and stille,
Til I thy purpos knewe and al thy wille."

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