Capitulum vicesimum quartum.
LEO themperoure, levynge batelle to his enemyes, ȝafe batelle to the ymages of seyntes; whom Gregory the pope, and Germanus Page 211, vol.6 the bischop of Constantynopole, resiste hym manly after the maner and consuetude approbate of the churche, seyenge that men awe to do and ȝiffe to theyme meke honoure, sithe peple honoure noo thynge in theyme but God, or for God and for seyntes, whiche they represente to us. Beda, libro quinto, capitulo vicesimo quarto. Withredus, the kynge of Kente, diede in this yere, and Thobias bischop of Rowchestre, whiche understode the langage of Grekes as his awne lan|gage. Paulus, libro vij o. Saracenys segede Constantinopole by the space of thre yere, and toke grete goodes awey with theyme. Withbrandus, kynge of the Longobardes, herynge that, brouhȝte the relykes off Seynte Austyn, caryede to the yle of Sardinia for the peple off Barbre, and causede theyme to be brouȝhte to the cite Januense, and after that to the cite Papy. Willelmus de Regibus, libro primo. Kynge Page 213, vol.6 Ine, levynge the realme of Westesaxons to Ethelardus his cosyn, wente to Rome; of whom hit is rehersede that he grawntede firste to seynte Petyr a jd of every howse of his realme, callede longe of Ynglische men Romescotte. Ethelburga, wyfe to hym, induced that pilgremage in this wise: this woman movenge hym ofte to forsake worldely thynges in his olde age, and profitynge not, thouȝhte to attempte by a wyle. Whiche beynge at the kynges cite in grete pleasure and delice, and returnede from hit, the keper of that place defilede hit with alle deformite after the commaundamente of the qwene, with dungge of bestes and other þinges unhoneste, puttenge a sowe that hade farowede newly in the bedstede of the kynge. The qwene knowynge that afore, preide the kynge to beholde the place where they were usede to reste. That doen the kynge mervayled moche that [folio 284a] Page 215, vol.6 place to be of suche deformite, lyke sometyme to the delices of Sardanapallus. The qwene seide: "O my lorde, where be youre clothes of silke and of clothe of Arras nowe; where is youre pleasure nowe; alle is goen, and so schalle oure bodies in lyke wyse whom we norysche nowe in grete delices." Ine the kynge movede in this wise by his qwene wente to Rome, sittenge not þere amonge grete states, but amonge pover men. And Ethelburga his qwene wente to the monastery of Berk|yngum where here sustyr was abbesse, whiche after that made abbesse endede here life in grete vertu. Beda, libro v., capi|tulo xxix o. Osricus kynge of Northumbrelonde diede after the xjthe yere of his reigne, whom Colwulphus did succede ix. Page 217, vol.6 yere, to whom Beda did write the story of Ynglonde. Beda, ubi supra. In whiche yere ij. horrible blasynge sterres apperede; oon of theyme did precede the sonne in the morowe, and that other folowede the sonne at even, protendenge grete flammes from theym into the northe, as a prenosticatyve of grete de|struccion, for soone after that a grete multitude of Saracenys depressede Fraunce. Beda, libro v., capitulo xxv to. Briȝht|woldus, archebischop of Cawnterbury, diede in this tyme; whom Chadwinus succedid, the bischoppes of London, of Wynchestre, and of Rowchestre, doynge the labor of þe consecracion. The sowthe provinces were subiecte to Ethelbaldus the kynge of the Marches, unto the coste of the water of Humbre. Pictes and Scottes hade pease with Ynglische men, and Britons were as mixte, somme of liberte, and mony subiecte to the servyce of Ynglische men. Gregorius the thridde succedid Gregorius the secunde xi, yere, which confermede the veneracion of Page 219, vol.6 seyntes in a cownesayle at Rome, allemoste of a ml bischoppes, and cursynge terribly the contemptors of that statute. A man callede Petronax Brixanus, thro the exhortacion of Gregory the pope, wente to the mownte Cassyne, and instorede that place competentely with goodes and monkes. Chadwynus, archebischop of Cawnterbery, diede in this yere, whom Nothe|linus, bischop off London, did succede. In whiche yere Alwinus other Woi, bischoppe of Lichefelde, diede; after the dethe of whom Witta was made bischoppe of Lichefelde, and Totta at Westechestre, Eata contynuynge stylle at Dorchestre. ℞. In whiche yere venerable Beda diede. Willelmus de Regibus, libro quinto. Whiche was taken to Benedicte Biscop to be tauȝhte in the vijthe yere of his age, abbot of the monastery Girwyense, and taken after his dethe to Colfridus thabbot and his succesor; [folio 284b] made diacon of Iohn bischoppe of Yorke in the xixthe yere of his age, and preste in the xxxti yere. In whiche yere he began Page 221, vol.6 to write, and lyvede in that monastery by alle the tyme of his lyfe in meditacions and exposicions of holy scripture, thenkynge a pleasure to learne or to teche other to write betwene the tymes of reguler observaunce and quotidian service in the churche. Whiche made lxxviij. bookes, whom he dothe nowmbre in thende of his story of Ynglonde. But hit is to be hade in mervayle, a man beynge so ferre from excercise of scole, in so schorte space of lyfe, with so sobre sermon to have laborede so mony volumes: by whiche y coniecture he was not at Rome, thauȝhe somme men kepe oppinion, seyenge that he wente to cause his werkes to be approbate, that and if eny man obiecte ageyne theym he myȝhte be þer presente to answere, and to amende theyme if eny thynge were to be correcte. But hit is not founde in eny writynge of auctorite that Bede beynge blynde, and brouȝhte to preche to stones, by disseyte and gyle of his servaunte, and that the stones scholde say Amen; wente Page 223, vol.6 thryes to Rome, and see þer thre R R R and thre f f f wryten, whom he expownede in this wise: "The realmes of Rome schal suffre ruyne thro fernence of yrne, with flammes and brennynge and with hungre." Willelmus de Regibus, libro primo. But hit is schewede Bede to have bene desirede to have commyn to Rome by an epistole of pope Gregory the thrydde, sende to Colfridus thabbotte, to discusse certeyne questions. Where hit is to be advertisede that the courte of Rome had nede to sende for Bede to discusse certeyne maters, and also the maner of his vertuous lyfe; for utterly he myȝhte not be vicious, whiche fixede his mynde so hyely in the exposicions of divine scripture. The vertu of whom apperede moche in the tyme of his dethe, whiche oppressede with infirmite, and vexede so sore in the stomake that he myȝhte not retene thynges receyvede, refusede not to study, laborenge by vij. wekes in grete infirmite as aforeseide; but he tauȝhte dayly Page 225, vol.6 his disciples betwene tymes of reguler observaunce in lesons and in questions, seyenge to þeim, "O my childer, lerne while y am with yow; y wote not howe longe I schalle tary;" in|ferrenge the sayenge of seynte Ambrose: "I have not lyvede so amonge you that y have schame to lyve, ne y drede not to dye, for we have goode Lorde;" whiche sorowede moche [folio 285a] in the nyȝhtes if eny of his disciples did absente theyme from doctrine and study, wakynge as alle nyȝhte in preier. In the thridde fery afore the day of the Assencion of oure Lorde, knowynge the ende of his lyfe to be nye, kyssenge his breþer, the sacramentes of the churche receyvede,*. [Sic in MS.] toke to the dis|ciples, whom he luffede moche, secrete thynges that he hade in kepynge, and preynge theym to pray for hym. And in the Assencion day afore his dethe he desirede the grace of the Holy Goste, seyenge: "O Rex gloriæ, Domine virtutum," an Page 227, vol.6 antemme whiche is songe in the churche as that day; whiche endede, the sawle departede from the body with a merveylous swetenes, beryede there at that tyme. But he is seide to be beryede now with seynte Cuthberte at Direm, with whom alle the knowlege of gestes of Ynglonde unto the conqueste is beryede, in a token of slawthe of labor, for connynge scholde succede. The versus of the epitaphy, of whom unworthy to so noble a clerke, be a testimonialle whiche do folowe: "Pres|biter hic Beda requiescit carne sepultus; Dona, Christe, ani|mam in cœlis gaudere perennem, Daque eum sophiæ fonte debriari, Cui jam suspiravit intento ouans amare." Ricoldus the duke of Friselonde movede that he scholde be baptisede at the predicacion of blissede Wulfraunus the bischop abowte this tyme, putte oon foote yn the fonte and kepede that oþer Page 229, vol.6 with owte, and inquirede of men stondynge abowte wheþer moo of his predecessors were in paradise or in helle. Whiche herynge that moo men of his predecessors were in helle, toke his foote owte of the fonte, seynge, "I wylle raþer folowe the moore nowmbre than the lesse;" and so he deceyvyd by a spiritte diede in the thrydde day nexte folowynge." Wil|lelmus de Pontificibus, libro 4o. The blissede virgyn seynte Frideswide, borne in Oxenforde, and doȝhter to Didanus the duke, diede this tyme. Whom Algarus the kynge foloynge for pleasure of the flesche unto the cite Oxenforde, that virgyn entrede into the cite, the ȝates were closed by miracle, and the kynge was made blynde. Neverthelesse, his siȝhte was restorede at the preyere of that blissede virgyn. From whiche tyme kynges of Ynglonde drede and fere to entre into that cite leste that they have eney infortuny. Colwulfus kynge of Page 231, vol.6 Northumbrelond, after the viijthe yere of his reigne, levynge the realme to Egbertus his cosynne, was made a monke in the monastery of Beda, and the seide Egbertus reignede xix. yere. ℞. But Willelmus, libro primo de Regibus, seythe that he was made monke at the churche of Lindisfarne, and afterwarde [folio 285b] beryede nye to seynte Cuthberte. Cuthberte Hertford suc|cedid Notholinus tharchebischop of Cawnterbery.