Montemayor's Diana

Page 158

Home  /  Facsimile  /  Page 158

Previous Page Next Page



danger, and if she did not speedily helpe him, that he could not escape with life, was not afraide to put hers in ieopardy, by doing that, which in such a case she thought, she was bound to performe: wherefore putting a sharpe headed arrowe into her bowe, shee saide vnto them: Keepe out knights, for it is not beseeming men that make account of this name and honour, to take aduantage of their enimies with so great oddes. And ayming at the sight of one of their helmets, she burst it with such force, that the arrow running into his eies, came out of the other side of his head, so that he fell downe dead to the ground. When the distressed knight sawe two of his enimies dead, he ran vpon the third with such force, as if he had but then be∣gun the combat; but Felismenahelped him out of that trouble, by putting another arrow into her bow, the which transpiercing his armour, she left vnder his left pap, and so iustly smot his hart, that this knight also followed his two companions. When the Shepherds and the knight beheld what Felismena had done, and how at two shootes she had killed two such valiant knights, they were all in great woon∣der. The knight therefore taking off his helmet, and comming vnto her saide. How am I able (faire Shepherdesse) to requite so great a benefite, and good turne, as I haue receiued at thy hands this day, but by acknowledging this debt for euer in my gratefull minde. When Felismena beheld the knights face, and knew him, her sen∣ces were so troubled, that being in such a traunce she could scarce speake, but com∣ming to her-selfe againe, she answered him. Ah my Don Felix, this is not the first debt, wherein thou art bound vnto me. And I cannot beleeue, that thou wilt ac∣knowledge this (as thou saiest) no more then thou hast done greater then this be∣fore. Beholde to what a time and ende my fortune and thy forgetnesse hath brought me, that she that was woont to be serued of thee in the citie with Tilt and Tourneyes, and honoured with many other things, whereby thou didst deceiue me, (or I suffered my selfe to be deceiued) doth nowe wander vppe and downe, exiled from her natiue countrey and libertie, for vsing thus thine owne. If this brings thee not into the knowledge of that which thou owest me, remember how one whole yeere I serued thee as thy page in the Princesse Cesarinas Court: and how I was a solicitor against my selfe, without discouering my selfe, or my thoughts vnto thee, but onley to procure thy remedie, and to helpe the greefe, which thine made thee feele. How many times did I get thee fauours from thy mistresse Celia to the great cost of my teares and greefes: all which account but small Don Felix in re∣spect of those dangers (had they beene vnsufficient) wherein I would haue spent my life for redresse of thy paines, which thy iniurious loue affoorded thee. And vnlesse thou art weary of the great loue, that I haue borne thee, consider and weigh with thy selfe the strange effects, which the force of loue hath caused me to passe. I went out of my natiue countrey, and came to serue thee, to lament the ill that thou did’st suffer, to take vpon me the iniuries and disgraces that I receiued therein; and to giue thee any content, I cared not to lead the most bitter and painefull life, that euer woman liued. In the habite of a tender and daintie Ladie I loued thee more then thou canst imagine, and in the habite of a base page I serued thee (a thing more con∣trarie to my rest and reputation then I meane now to reherse) and yet now in the ha∣bite of a poore and simple Shepherdesse I came to do thee this small seruice. What remaines then more for me to doe, but to sacrifice my life to thy louelesse soule, if with the same yet, I could giue thee more content: and if in lieu therof thou wouldest but remember, how much I haue loued, & do yet loue thee: here hast thou thy sword in thy hand; let none therefore, but thy selfe reuenge the offence that I haue done


Previous Page Next Page