Augustinus de Civitate Dei, libro octavodecimo. In Sarug his tyme Belus, Nemproth his sonne, kyng of Babi|loyne, wente into Assyria, and wan it afterward wiþ ynne a schort tyme; and whan he hadde i-reigned fiue and sixty ȝere þanne he deide. And his sone Nynus regnede after hym, and bygan to reigne þe ȝere of Thare Abrahams fader euene þritty, and was kyng wel nygh of al Asia outake Inde þre and fifty ȝere. In þe ȝere of his kyngdom þre and fourty Abraham was i-bore, to fore þe buldinge of þe citee of Rome nyh a þowsand ȝere and þre hondred. Orosius, libro primo. Þe ȝere to fore þe buldynge of þe citee of Rome a þow|sand and þre*. [nyne, α.] hondred, Nynus kyng of Assiriens for couetise to make hym greet lordschipe*. [his lordshippe grete, Cx.] bare out armour, and lyuede Page 277, vol.2 cruel lyf fifty ȝere in al Asia in werre and in bataille, and aroose out of þe souþ and from þe reed see, and destroyed in þe norþ vppon þe see þat hatte Eusinum þat streccheþ from the ryver Thanay to þe endes of Hiberia*. [Heberia, MS.] and*. [an, α.] Armenya. And so þis kyng Nynus ouer come men of Scitia barbarica, þat were ȝit no warriours, but stille men and esy,*. [pesible, Cx.] and made hem knowe strengþe, and tauȝte hem to lyue by manis blood þat lyvede toforhonde by*. [with, Cx.] melke of bestes; and at þe laste he slow Zoroastes*. [So α. and Cx.; Zorastes, MS., but Zoroastes below (once).] kyng of Bactrians þat was fyndere of wycche|craft, but at þe laste dede, while he bysegede a citee þat was tornede from hym, he was i-hit wiþ an arewe, and so he was i-slawe. Petrus, 36o. Nynus Belus his sone, whanne his fader was dede, [hadde]*. [Added from α. and Cx.] Assiria and þe citee Ninyue i-nemped by his name, and made þat citee Ninyue [chef of his kyngdom, and made the citee]*. [Added from α.; so also in Cx. (nearly).] huger and more by þre iorneyes. For Nemproth hadde toforehonde i-founded þat citee, and slow also Cham, þat hete Zoroastes*. [So α. and Cx.; Zorastes, MS., but Zoroastes below (once).] also, kyng of Bactria, þat wroot the seuene*. [So α. and Cx. (who has sciences below); seuenþe, MS.] science in fourtene pileres, in seuene of bras and seuene of brent*. [brand, Cx.] tyle, forto saue hem aȝenst eiþer flood,*. [ayenste fyre and water, Cx.] but Nynus brende his bookes. Isidorus, libro 8o. Aristotil of Zoroastes he wroot þat he made twenty hondred þowsand vers of wicchecrafte, and Democritus made Page 279, vol.2 þat craft more afterward in Ypocratis*. [Ypocrat his, α.; Ypocras, Cx.] tyme. Petrus 36o. Of þis Nynus mawmetrie*. [Mawmetrye first, α.] bygan in þis maner.*. [So Cx.; tyme, MS. and α.] Whan Bellus was dede his sone Nynus, for to have som comfort of his sorwe, made an ymage of his fader, and he dede þat ymage so grete worschippe and reuerence þat he spared al euel doeres þat fliȝe to þat ymage; by ensample of þis doynge meny men made ymages to her leue frendes, and so by ensample of Belus his mawmet come forþ oþere mawmettes. [Also of Belus his name come forþ þe comoun names of mawmettis]*. [Added from α. and Cx.] in dyuerse longages and tonges; for som men clepeþ her mawmet Beel. som Baal, and som Baalim, and som ȝaf here mawmettes*. [mawmett, α.] a surname, and cleped hir names*. [mawmett, α. (not Cx.)] Belphegor, and som Belsebub. Alexander in mythologia.*. [Mitologia, MS., α.; Mytilog., Cx.] Of þe bryngynge forþ of mawme|trie com wel nyh al þe feyninge of poetrie, for whanne Siro|phanes of Egipt hadde an ymage of his sone þat was dede, þat ymage is i-cleped*. [he cleped, Cx., which is better. (β. and γ. agree with MS. and α.)] Y dolum, þat is, likenesse and schappe, for liknes of sorwe. Whanne þey*. [he, Cx.] hadde i-made þat image in mynde of his sone, þat ymage was hugeliche*. [gretely, Cx.] i-worschipped of his seruauntes; it was refute and socour to mysdoeres as he hadde i-ordeyned; and while þey souȝte helpe and remedye of sorwe þei fond seed and springynge of wel more sorowe; for þe old Page 281, vol.2 errour in worschippe of mawmettis gan to sprede. Noþeles þe same manere doynge was nouȝt*. [So α. and Cx.; now, MS.] i-ordeyned of al men. For philosofres worschipped oon*. [o, α.; oo, Cx.] God and ȝaf hym many names for meny manere doynges and worchynges þat he worcheþ; lyveþ,*. [and lyveþ, MS. α. β. γ. Pro|bably we should read lyver (and feler below).] for he ȝeueþ lyf; feleþ, for he ȝeueþ felynge; Iupiter, þat is, helper, for he helpeþ. Also Plato, in þe book þat hatte Philosophus, seiþ þat poetes, by cause of wynnynge and of fauour, peyntede resouns sciens and myȝt þat were i-graunted to þe vse of lyuynge in meny manere schappes, and ȝaf euerich a propre name. And so konnynge of telienge*. [tellynge, α.; tillyng, Cx.] of feeldes þey cleped Cereres,*. [So MS.; and the error may be safely set down to Trevisa himself, who elsewhere imagines Appolyn to be the nominative of Apollo. The Harl. version is somewhat worse.] konnynge of telienge of vynes þey clepede*. [So α.; clepe, MS.] Ba[c]chus, and accountede foule dedes of men amonge goddes.*. [So Cx.; goode, MS.; gode, α.]Isidorus, Etymologia, libro 8o. Þey þat payenis*. [paynyms, Cx.] clepiþ goddis, þey were men. And as þey bere hem in her lif, bettre or wers, so þey were i-worschipped after her deeþ. Bote by false lore of fendes men þat come afterward worschipped hem for goddis, þat were first i-worschipped onliche for mynde; and þan forto make it more solempne com feynynges of poetes. ℞. Augus|tinus de Civitate Dei, libro ij. capitulo xi. Þe poete wiþ his lippe spekeþ of þre manere of goddes; for som þey clepeþ Page 283, vol.2 goddes, as Iupiter*. [So α.; here, and elsewhere sometimes, MS. has Iubiter.] and Mars; som half goddes, as Hercules and Romulus; and som vertuous men þat me trowede þat hadde som|what of godhede, as Hector*. [So α.; Ector, MS.] and Achilles. Of mawmetrie come meny euel manere of doynge; such is þat þat*. [þa, MS.] Ierom spekeþ vppon Isay [decimo] octavo,*. [18o, α., Cx., correctly.] and seiþ þat Egipciens and wel nyh alle men of est*. [þe est, α.] londes worschippeth Fortune, þat is, god of happes, as þey meneþ; the ymage of Fortune*. [the ymage of Fortune] twice re|peated in MS.] is i-sette in a place þat is wel i-knowe, and haþ in his riȝt hond an horne ful of mede; alle þat sitteþ aboute fondeþ*. [foundeth, Cx.] to taste of þat horne þe laste day of Nouembre; and ȝif þey fyndeþ þan þe horne ful, it bodeþ a good corn ȝere, and ȝif þey fyndeþ it empty,*. [leer, α.; voyd or empty, Cx.] þanne þey makeþ sorwe. Trogus, libro primo. Whanne Nynus was dede, his wyf Semiramis, wiþ hir sone Nynus, þat heet Nynyan also, reignede in þis manere: þe wom|man durste*. [þurste, α.] nouȝt bytake þe kyngdom to þe ȝong childe, noþer sche durste hir self regne openliche; þerfore sche desgised hir self in þe childes liche, þe moder for þe sone, a womman in stede of þe childe, for eiþer hadde a small voys and [was]*. [Added from γ.; α. β. and Cx. agree with MS.] mene of stature. Þerfore sche*. [they, Cx.] hidde hir armes and hir þyȝhes wiþ dyuers helynges, and here heed wiþ a cappe. And for me schulde nouȝt seie þat sche hidde*. [had, Cx.] eny þing wiþ þe*. [þe] om. α.]Page 285, vol.2 newe manere of cloþinge, sche hiȝte þat hir peple schulde goo i-cloþed in þe same array, and ȝit þat peple vseþ þe same manere cloþinge. Þanne þis womman dede meny grete dedes, and whanne*. [and whan repeated in MS.] sche had ouercome þe envie*. [enemy, Cx,] of alle enemyes, þanne sche knowlechede what sche was and how sche hadde i-doo. Þan þe doynge torned hire to ful*. [right, Cx.] greet worschippe; for sche ouercome Ethiopia, blew men lond, and Ynde also. And at þe laste sche desired hir owne sone, and bad him forto ligge by here; and he slow here, whan sche hadde i-reigned two and fourty ȝere. But hir sone Nynus helde hym apaied wiþ þe trauaille*. [transuaille, MS.; trauail, Cx.] of his fader and moder, and was afterward selde i-seie amonge men, and leuede and wax olde among wommen. And his successoures, kynges þat come after hym, folwede þat ensample of hym and ȝeuen*. [ȝeve, α.; yaf. Cx.] answere to þe peple by messangers þat schulde goo by twene. ℞. Þat manere doynge was i-vsed anon to þe kyng Sardanapallus his tyme.