Montemayor's Diana

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my Masters good name, I will therefore tell thee truely what I know, hoping that thou wilt tell none in the worlde, that this secret treacherie was discouered by me. Thou must therefore knowe, that Felisarda thy stepmother is working a great dis∣grace against thy father, with a certaine Shepherd, whose name I will not tell thee, bicause thou maiest heereafter knowe him, if thou wilt: for if thou wilt come this night, and follow me where I will leade thee, thou shalt finde the adulterer and the trayteresse togither in Filenus house: for so they haue appointed, bicause Filenus lieth this night at a Farme he hath, by reason of some busines there, & cannot come home again before to morrow at noone. Wherfore look wel about thee, & at eleuen of the clocke at night come to mee, for I will bring thee in, where thou maiest doe that, which may turne to thine own credit, thy fathers honor, & perhaps greatly to thine owne profit by obtaying pardon at thy fathers hands. This tale Sylueria told so smoothly, and with such cunning dissimulation, that Montanus was resolued to put himselfe in the greatest danger to be reuenged of him, who shoulde offer any disho∣nour to his father. And so the vile and wicked Sylueria very glad that this deceit which Felisarda hatched, had so good successe, went home againe, where she tolde Felisarda her Mistresse what was agreed on betweene Montanus and her. Nowe had the darke night ouerspred the earth with her blacke mantell, when Montanus being come to the village, tooke a dagger with him which his vncle Palemon the Shepherd had giuen him, and iust at eleuen of the clocke went to Filenus his fathers house, where Sylueria was staying for him, as she had appointed. O wicked treason, the like neuer seene, nor heard of before! Oh trayterous wickednes, such as was ne∣uer thought of before! She tooke him by the hand, and going very softly vp a paire of staires, ledde him to the chamber doore where Filenus his father, and Felisarda his stepdame were a bedde togither, and when she had set him there, she saide vnto him. Now thou art come to the place Montanus, where thou must shew that thou hast courage and no abiect minde, that is requisite in so good a cause: goe into this chamber, and there thou shalt finde thy mother a bed with the adulterer. When she had saide so, she ranne away, as fast as euer she could. Montanus being thus de∣luded with Syluerias falshood, gaue credite to her words, and in a furie plucking his dagger out of the sheath, brake open the chamber doore with a thrust of his foote, like a mad man with these loud exclamations rushed into it, saying: Here must thou die (traytour) by mine owne hands: now shall the strumpet Felisardas foule loues helpe thee nothing at all: And speaking these words, he was so wroth, that he knew not who he was that lay in the bedde, and thinking to haue slaine the adulterer, he lifted vp his arme to stabbe his Father as he lay a bedde. But yet good Fortune awoke the old man, who knowing his sonne by the light that was there, thought ve∣rily that for the austere words & vnkind disgraces, which he had done him, he came to kill him; wherefore lifting himselfe quickly out of the bedde, with holding vp his hands he saide. O my sonne! what crueltie is this that makes thee the butcher of thine owne Father? For Gods sake remember thy selfe, and spill nor nowe my inno∣cent bloud, nor ende my life before the appointed hower from aboue doth come. For if I haue heeretofore vsed any rigour against thee, heere vpon my knees I craue pardon for it, with protestation, that from hencefoorth I will entreate thee as lo∣uingly and gently as any father in the world may vse his sonne. When Montanus perceiued the treacherie that was wrought, and the danger that he had almost in∣curred, by killing his owne Father, he stoode there so astonished, that his hart and arme so failed him, whereby the dagger fell out of his hands and neuer felt it. Being


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