Montemayor's Diana

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the ioy that they perceiued by her milde eies and countenance did warrant them from danger, and being come to them, she went presently to the Shepherdesse Belisa, and imbracing her with great ioy and gladnes, saide thus vnto her. If thou knewest from whom this imbracement came, thou wouldst with greater content (faire Shepherdesse) receiue it then now thou dost. It can come from no part faire Nymph (said she) where I may more ioyfully accept it, then from thine owne selfe, since he, from whom with the supre most ioy in the world I should entertaine it, is not now in the world: And I would desire to liue no longer, if I were now altogither depriued of the content, that this miserable life may at some times affoorde me, which onely I account, faire Nymph, thy friendly and gracious companie. This life (saide Polydora) from henceforth I hope thou shalt enioy with more content then thou canst imagine: And bicause thou maist knowe how, let vs sit vnder the shade of this greene Sicamour, and I will acquaint thee with such matters, as shall reuiue thy spirits, and decaied soule.Belisa, and the Nymphes sat them downe taking Polydora in the mids, who said to Belisa. Tell me (faire Shepherdesse) how certaine art thou of the death of Arsenius and of Arsileus? Belisa vnable to stop the sudden eruption of her violent teares, answered. So certaine, as one that beheld that tragi∣call spectacle with her owne eies, the one shot thorow with an arrowe, the other killing himselfe with his owne Faulchion. But what wilt thou say to one, that will tell thee, that these two, whom thou didst see dead, are aliue, and in perfect health? Her would I answere (saide Belisa) that told me this, that she had a desire to renew my teares, and to bring those to my thoughts againe, whose remembrance is my death, or that she tooke a delight to sport her selfe with my greefes. I am certaine (saide Polydora) thou thinkest not so of me, for thou knowest how thy cares haue touched me neerer then any other, to whom thou didst euer impart them. But tell me what is that Shepherd of thy towne, that is called Alfeus. The greatest Coniu∣rer (said Belisa) and the most cunning Magician that is (I thinke) in Europe, who did once fondly spend his time in louing and seruing me. He is a man (faire Nymph) whose dealing and conuersation is altogether with Diuels, which he makes to take such shapes vpon them as he list himselfe, so that many times thou wouldst thinke, thou wert talking with thy familiar acquaintance (into whose shape he transformeth some spirit or other) when indeede thou art talking with a very Diuell. Thou must therefore knowe faire Shepherdesse (saide Polydora) that the same Alfeus with his enchantments and diuellish deuises hath beene the cause of the deceite, wherein hitherto thou hast liued, and of the infinite teares, that for the same thou hast pow∣red forth, bicause knowing that Arsileuswas to speake with thee that night (as it was concluded betweene you) he caused two spirits to take the shapes of Arsileus and his father vpon them. And Arsileus desiring to talke with thee, effected that, that should fall out, which with thine eies thou didst that night beholde. Bicause thinking they were dead, thou mightest despaire and kill thy selfe, or do that (at the least) which thou hast already done. When Belisa heard what faire Polydora did tell her, she was so farre beside her-selfe, that for a while she could not speake one word, but comming to her-selfe again, she said vnto her. Thou hast told me (faire Nymph) strange things, if my sorrow woulde giue me leaue to beleeue them. By that loue which (thou saiest) thou dost beare me, tell me (I beseech thee) how thou knowest it, or of whom thou hast vnderstoode that those two, which I sawe dead before mine eies, were not Arsenius and Arsileus? Of no other saide Polydora, but of Arsileus himselfe. What, of Arsileus, saide Belisa? Is it possible that my Arsileus doth liue,


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