Montemayor's Diana

Page 475

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they knew, how the readines and liuelines of their wits would be shewed and tried by it. And so Syluanus and Arsileus seeming to be well content, leading their daunce about againe, sung in manner following.

Sylu . SHepherd, why dost thou hold thy peace?
Sing: and thy ioy to vs report.
Arsil . My ioy (good Shepherd) should be lesse,
If it were told in any sort.
Sylu . Though such great fauours thou dost win,
Yet deigne thereof to tell some part:
Arsil . The hardest thing is to begin
In enterprises of such arte.
Sylu . Come, make an end, no cause omit
Of all the ioies that thou art in,
Arsil . How should I make an end of it,
That am not able to begin.
Sylu . It is not iust, we should consent,
That thou shouldst not thy ioies recite,
Arsil . The soule that felt the punishment
Doth onely feele this great delight.
Sylu . That ioy is small, and nothing fine,
That is not told abroad to many,
Arsil . If it be such a ioy as mine,
It can be neuer told to any.
Sylu . How can this hart of thine containe
A ioy, that is of such great force?
Arsil . I haue it, where I did retaine
My passions of so great remorce.
Sylu . So great and rare a ioy as this
No man is able to withhold,
Arsil . But greater that a pleasure is,
The lesse it may with words be told.
Sylu . Yet haue I heard thee heeretofore
Thy ioies in open songs report:
Arsil . I saide, I had of ioy some store,
But not how much, nor in what sort.
Sylu . Yet when a ioy is in excesse,
It selfe it will vnfold,
Arsil . Nay such a ioy should be the lesse,

If that it might be told.

The Shepherds would haue sung one verse or two more, when a goodly compa∣nie of faire Nymphes (as Felicia had appointed) came to the fountaine, and euerie one playing vpon her seuerall instrument, made strange and delightfull harmonie. One of them plaied on a Lute; another on a Harpe; another made a maruellous sweet countertenour vpon a Recorder; another with a peece of a fine quil made the siluer stringed Cyterne sweetely to sound; others the stringes of the base Viall with rosined haires; others with Virginals and Violins made delicate changes in the


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