Capitulum vicesimum quartum.
ABESSA, of the cuntre of Bethleem, was iugge in Israel vij. yeres, and reignede þer. In the firste yere of whom Priamus, the kynge off Frigia other elles Troy, sende An|thenor vn to the Grekes, seyenge that he wolde suffre alle Page 409, vol.2 iniuryes a-paste if that Hesiona his sustyr, taken aweye by theyme, myȝhte be restorede. The men of Grece denyenge that, Priamus made redy to make batelle ageyne theyme, makenge Hector, his firste son, gouernoure and rewlere of hit, whiche thynge Alexander other Paris exhortede to be fullefillede, seyenge that as he wente to hunte in a woode callede Ida, he see in his slepe Mercury to haue brouȝhte to hym Venus and Minerua to iugge of the beawte of theyme. Then Minerua promisede to hym sapience, if that he wolde preferre here beaute; and Venus promisede to hym oon of the feireste women of þe worlde to his wife, if þat he wolde preferre here beawte. Neuerthelesse schippes were made redy, and Alexander with Antenor were sende to the londe of Grece, whiche, commenge to an yle callede Cythera, where women were gedrede to the feste of Iuno, Paris toke awey Helena, the wife of kynge Menelaus, commenge to mete Paris to beholde his beawte, and broȝhte here to Priamus. At whiche acte Priamus ioyede moche, Page 411, vol.2 thenkenge to recure Hesiona his sustyr by that. Where|fore Menelaus, kynge of Lacedemonia, makenge compleynte to Agamemnon,*. [Agamenon and Agamynon, MSS., and so below.] kynge of Mecenas, v. myȝhty men con|descende to theire helpe, whiche were Achilles, Patroclus, Vlixes, Aiax, and Nestor, with mony other stronge men, xlvij. ml in nowmbre, hauenge a ml and cc. schippes redy at Athenes in the haven or porte. After that Apollo Del|phicus ȝafe an answere to theyme that Troye scholde be destroyede after the xthe yere; wherefore the Grekes goenge to the see londede in Frigia, and robbenge there, returnede after that thei hade taken þeire pray. Then Agamemnon*. [Agamenon and Agamynon, MSS., and so below.] sende Vlixes and Diomedes as messyngeres to kynge Pria|mus that he scholde delyuere Helena. Then Priamus re|membrede the iniurye doen to hym by the Argonautes, the dethe of his fader, and the takenge awey of his sustyr, and the contempte off Antenor his messyngere, refusethe peace, desirenge batelle. Wherefore an*. [So the MS.] grete hoste gedrede and metenge to gedre, Hector did sle Protesilaus*. [Prothesilaus, MS.; Prothesalaus, Harl. MS.] and Meno, and woundede soore mony other, vn til that Aiax, son of Page 413, vol.2 Hesiona, sustir to Priamus, did lette hym knowenge con|sanguinite betwene theyme. After that batelle doen, respite of ij. yere was grawntede, that men sleyne myȝhte be beryede. But that space a-paste, the batelle began, contynuenge by lxxx. daies, in whiche batelle Hector did sle x. nowble dukes, and Achilles did sle iiij. stronge men. After whiche batelle doen, space and respite of iij. yere were grawntede. The batelle begunne ageyne, mony nowble men were sleyne, where Hector, warnede by Andromacha his wife, that he scholde not goe to batelle in that day, was sleyne by Achilles, whiche beryede, respite was ȝiffen by a yere. And at the ende of the yere, in the anniuersary day of Hector, Achilles, movede to the luffe of Polixena, doȝhter of kynge Priamus, wente to theyme. Whiche desirenge of Priamus to haue Polyxena,*. [Polixena, MSS.; Policena, Cx.] his doȝhter, to his wife, and hauenge grawnte, come not to þe batelle, seyenge that hit was a wickede thynge alle Europe to be trowblede for takenge aweye of Helena. Whiche, goenge to batelle at Page 415, vol.2 the laste thro the supplication of the Grekes, was woundede soore of Troilus, whiche hade sleyne and woundede mony Grekes. Achilles seenge that, and vexede soore, did sle Troilus and Meno. Then Hecuba, the wife of Priamus, hauenge hym in despecte, intendede decepcion, thenkenge to ordeyne a day to Achilles in whom he scholde wedde Polyxena here doȝhter. Achilles, comenge to theyme that tyme assignede, was sleyne by disseite of Paris other Alex|ander. Where off an answere was ȝiffen of goddes that men of Grece scholde be victores thro the bloode of Achilles. Then Neoptolemus,*. [Neoptholomus, MSS., and so be|low; Neoptholomeus, Harl. MS.] the son of Achilles, wente furthe to batelle, in whom Aiax and Alexander woundede either other dedely. Penthesilea,*. [Pentasilia, or Pentisilia, MSS.] the qwene of the Amazones, come to helpe the Troianes in the vijthe yere of theire batelles and fiȝhte, whiche dissoluede the sege of the Grekes and brente mony of theire schippes. Neuerthelesse that qwene Penthesilea*. [Pentasilia, or Pentisilia, MSS.] was sleyne of the son of Achilles, Neoptolemus*. [Neoptholomus, MSS., and so be|low; Neoptholomeus, Harl. MS.] by name, whom sche hade woundede soore. After that, Antenor*. [So Cx.; Anthenore, MS., as often; Anthenor, Harl. MS.] and Eneas movenge Priamus that Helena, wife to Menelaus, scholde be restorede, he hade indignacion, Page 417, vol.2 seyenge þei scholde loose theire lyfes, if thei movede to hym eny more of þat mater. Wherefore thei, hauenge in|dignacion, sende Polydamas to þe Grekes, offerenge to theym the delyueraunce of the cite, the lifes of theym grauntede and of theire men. Whiche grauntenge to theyme peace, and to alle theire men, that is to saye, vn to An|tenor, Eneas, and to Polydamas, and to alle theire men, the ȝates of the cite were sette open to the Grekes in þe nyȝhte. Where Priamus was sleyne of Neoptolomus. Eneas takenge Polyxena, hidde here at a place of Anchisen his fader, in the temple of goddes. Also liberte was grauntede to Andromacha at the instaunce of Helena. Polyxena, doȝhter to Priamus, founde at the laste, was throtelede at the beryalle of here fader. Wherefore Eneas was commaundede to departe from that cuntre, for the hidenge off Polyxena. That londe was lefte to Antenor, and Helena was restorede to Menelaus her howsebonde, kynge of Athenes. Where thei did fiȝhte by x. yere and vj. monethes, and there were sleyne of the Troianes, afore the treason of hit, vjc. lxxvj. ml, and after the treason of that cite cc. lxxviij. ml. Eneas departede from that cuntre, takenge with hym xxtiiiij schippes, with iij. ml. men and ccc.; Page 419, vol.2 and also ij. ml. folowede Antenor, and ij. ml. Helena and Andromacha.