Montemayor's Diana

Page 416

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(faire Shepherd and Shepherdesse) I neuer receiued so great contenment that might be compared with this in seeing you now, since the time that I was vniustlie forsaken of my cruell husband; which is so great, that though continuall greefe compels me to ceaselesse plaints, yet will I make a pause of them a little while to en∣ioy your peaceable and discreete companie. To this Marcelius answered. I praie God I may neuer see my torments cease, if that it greeues me not to see thine, and the same maiest thou also beleeue of faire Diana, whom thou seest in my companie. The Shepherdesse hearing Dianas name, running vnto her, did with the greatest gladnes that might be, embrace her, shewing a thousand louing signes, and making the most on her in the world, bicause she was desirous long since to knowe her, for the great report that she heard of her wisedome and beautie. Diana maruelling to see herselfe so entreated by a Shepherdesse, whom she knewe not, requited her yet with like curtesies againe, and desiring to know who she was, saide vnto her. The great fauours that thou hast done me, and the pittie which I take of thy complaints, make me desirous to know what thou art, wherefore tell vs (faire Shepherdesse) thy name, and discourse vnto vs the cause of thy greefe, bicause that after thou hast tolde it, thou shalt see how our harts will helpe thee to passe it away, and our eies readie to bewaile it. The Shepherdesse then with a gracious speech began to excuse her∣selfe, from telling the substance of her owne fall, yet vrged in the ende by their im∣portunate requestes, she sat downe againe vpon the grasse, and began thus to saie. By the report of Seluagia that was borne in my towne, and in thine too faire Diana, which is now married to the Shepherd Syluanus, thou hast beene told (I thinke) of the vnfortunate name of Ismenia, that is now beginning to tell her sorrowfull tale. And I thinke that she tolde thee at large when she was in thy towne, howe against my will I deceiued her in the Temple of Minerua in the kingdome of Portugall, and how by my owne deceite I was ouertaken; then perhaps she hath also tolde thee how I fained to loue Montanus her mortall enimie, to be reuenged of Alanius, who for the loue that he did beare her, forgot me quite, and how this fained loue with the riper knowledge of his vertues, and accomplishments fel out at last so true, that by means of it, I suffer this intolerable sorrow & greefe, which euen now I complai∣ned of. Therefore passing on farther in the history of my life, thou shalt vnderstand, that when Filenus father to Montanus came sometimes to my fathers house about certaine of his affaires, and bargaines that he had with him for flockes of sheepe, and had espied me on a time, although somewhat aged, yet he was so extreemely enamoured of me, that he became almost out of his wits. A thousand times a daie he wooed me, and euery hower reckoned vp to me his greefes, but all in vaine, for I would neither harken vnto him, nor regard his wordes. Yet bicause he was a man of more sufficiencie, and of fewer yeeres then many other in his case, I did not al∣togither forget him, and the rather for his sonne Montanus sake, whose loue had made me now his captiue before. The old man knew not of the loue, that Monta∣nus did beare me, for he was alwaies so carefull and dutifull a son, and so discreetly handled the matter, that the father had not any notice thereof, fearing mightilie (if it had beene knowne) his fathers displeasure, and that with bitter and angrie wordes he might haue iustly corrected him for it. And as wisely did the father con∣ceale from his sonne Montanus his owne follie; for, the better to chastise and amend what he thought amisse in his sonne, he was very vigilant not to discouer his owne and greater faults. Although for all this he neuer ceased with continuall suites to sollicite my loue, & importuned me to take him for my husband. He discoursed


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