Montemayor's Diana

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boldnes, which punishment as it will not (I thinke) be greeuous to me to suffer, so will it not be hurtfull to him, to gather that which he himselfe did sowe: How easie a thing it is for thee (said I) I see well, but how hard it is for him, I cannot conceiue, assuring thee, that if thou hadst but seene him at that present, thou wouldst consi∣der better of that I say, who is yet in such a case, that thou art scarce able to knowe him; with whose teares and burning sighes the hard dimonds and christall may be mollified and melted. And beleeue me Stela, if it had not beene for me and Parthe∣nius, that did put him in some vncertaine hope, bicause he shoulde not despaire, he had before this time paied deerely for his fault, (if by doing thy command, he made a fault) though yet in the end I greatly feare me that he cannot endure very long, if thou dost stay too long from visiting him, who now requires no other thing for his onely satisfaction and content. Truely (said Stela) thou hast termed them wel (vn∣certaine hopes) for so they are indeede, and of vncertaine they shall be for euer vaine. When I perceiued her hardnes, and of what small force my perswasions were, with mine eies full of teares I said vnto her. Ah Stela how ill dost thou requite my great loue towards thee, how small an account dost thou make of the loue, that thou owest me, and howe ill dost thou thinke of the tender affection, which I haue euer vowed vnto thee? the reuenge of all which (if with speede thou dost not pre∣vent my ensuing sorrow) I craue at the iust hands of our impartiall Gods. Speaking thus vnto her, and renting the fine vaile that weakely couered my amorous brests, with many sighes, and so profounde, that my breath seemed to burst my inwarde soule, I foulded mine armes, and leaning my head vpon my knees (for then I was set downe) I made strange and pitious motions with my bodie. Stela stoode astonished at such a sight, not knowing whereunto she might attribute so great ex∣tremes, and so was she in a great suspence, vnable to speake or do any thing, but weepe for loue and pitie (not knowing wherefore) onely thereby to keepe me com∣panie: and a little while after embracing me, she began thus to say. My deere Si∣ster and Mistresse, if this offence which without reason (as I know no lesse) thou hast conceiued against me, thou takest in ill part at the first, I do no lesse wonder at this new accident, that thy vnwonted teares mooue me thus to pitie. Tell me wherein I am culpable, or how I haue offended thee; and beware thou puttest me not in suspi∣tion that thy friendship to me is stained and vnpure, when as mine hath euer beene towards thee vertuous, and sincere. For thou sayest I requite thee ill, bicause I will not see that presumptuous Shepherd. O my deere friend Stela (said I) how faine would I be as thou art, that I might with that libertie that thou hast, tell thee the cause of my cōplaints, or that thou wert as I am, to heare with my subiection, What reason I haue to make them, and to accuse thee. But in the end with the possibilitie that I shall attaine to, and as shortly as I can, I will tell it thee, to take away that sus∣pition which thou hast of me, and not to conceale any secret matter from one ano∣ther, an vnlawful part to our right of mutual friendship. The reason that iustly moues me to complaine of thee is, that thou wilt not go see Delicius, and this is for another matter then thou thinkest of, and therefore be attentiue, It is now cleere enough to thee, what great loue and amitie is betweene both the brothers, which hath made Parthenius feele the griefe of his friend Delicius no lesse then he did himselfe, where∣by he is in as great dauunger of his life: For when Delicius falling downe, had lost his colour, and was in such an agonie, Parthenius was in no lesse to see his friend in such a case, that thou wouldest haue thought the last period of both their liues had beene come, who had beene long since deliuered from their paines, if by some small hope


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