Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden maonachi Cestrensis; together with the English translations of John Trevisa and of an unknown writer of the fifteenth century.
Higden, Ranulf, d. 1364., Trevisa, John, tr. d. 1402., Caxton, William, ca. 1422-1491., Malverne, John, d 1415?, Babington, Churchill, ed. 1821-1889,, Lumby, J. Rawson ed. (Joseph Rawson), 1831-1895.

Capitulum vicesimum quartum.

AFTER Plato come Aristotil, a noble man of fame and of loore, and of greet wit, noþeles nouȝt so noble [a]*. [Cx.] spekere*. [spekar, γ.] as Plato, but he passed meny men in þe office*. [offys, γ.; thoffyce, Cx.] of techynge. and was konnynge in craft of faire [utterance and]*. [Cx.] schew|ynge to wiþseie*. [wiþsegge, γ.] alle oþere menis sentence.*. [sentens, γ.; mannes sentences, Cx] He brouȝte up þe secte þat is i-cleped Peripatetica,*. [Paripatetica, Cx.] for he used to dispute*. [despuyte, γ.] wandrynge and walking. While Plato leved, Aristotle gadrede meny disciples into his heresie, he made bookes of alle manere [philosofy and ȝaf certeyn hestes and rules in al manere]*. [From α.] of philosofie. Noþeles specialliche*. [specialliche] om. Cx.] passynge all oþere he brouȝt*. [broȝte, γ.] logike in to his riȝt lawe. Þis is i-cleped*. [þes is y-clepud, γ.] þe philosofre, as it were he þat bereþ þe prise*. [price, Cx.] of philosofres: so Rome is i-cleped þe citie, so Maro þe poete, and so Aristotle Page  361, vol.3 þe philosofre. Noþeles som men trowed þat he was a fendes sone, for he was sweþer*. [swyþer, α. and Cx.; swiper, β.; swepour, γ.] and swift, and cleer of witte, and desired greet worschepe, ffor by meny manere sleiȝtes*. [sleiȝþes, β.; sleygþes, γ.; sleyghtes, Cx.] he usede to wynne, and took worschepe tofore alle oþer men. Alexander de Natura. Aristotle eyȝtene ȝere olde*. [eȝtene ȝere old, α. and Cx.] among oþere tauȝte [eloquence]*. [Cx.] faire and noble spekynge*. [speche, Cx.] as it is specialliche i-sene in his Commentis Homerici*. [Comentes Homeris, Cx.] and in Ditee*. [dyte, Cx.] of Troye, þe whiche he bytook*. [bitoke, β.; whoche he bytok, γ.] Alisaundre, and in his Dyalogus of Poetis and in Tretys of Rethorik.*. [tretice of rethorique, Cx.] Aristotle eyȝtene*. [eyȝtetene, γ.] ȝere olde was i-sent into Athene, and lerned*. [leornede, γ.] þere of Zocrates*. [Socrates, β., γ., and Cx.] þre ȝere, and whanne Socrates was deed he was wiþ Plato twenty ȝere to Plato his lyves ende,*. [till Plato dyed, Cx.] and hadde so grete favour [of Plato]*. [Cx.] þat Plato cleped Aristotles hous, þe redynge hous, and wolde ofte seie,*. [sygge, γ.] "Go we to þe reder his hous;" and when Aristotle was away*. [absente, Cx.] Plato wolde crye, "Understondynge is away, þe audiens*. [audience, β. and Cx.] is deef." He levede*. [lyved, β.] after Plato his deth foure and twenty ȝere, somtyme techynge Alisaundre, somtyme wendynge aboute wiþ hym into meny Page  363, vol.3 londes, somtyme makynge bookes, somtyme techynge dis|ciples, and so he lyved in alle*. [yn al, γ.] þre and sixty ȝere. He made Alisaundre bulde a-ȝen þe citee Stagerik þat Phelip had de|stroyed*. [distruyed, β.; destruyed, γ.] and i-bete doun. Þerfore þe men of þat citie haloweþ*. [habbeþ, γ.] a feste day in worschippe of Aristotle, and clepeþ þat feste Arestotleya*. [that feste is called Aristotileya, Cx.]; and the monþe þat þe*. [this, Cx.] feste is i-halowed ynne þey clepeþ*. [clepe it, Cx.] Stagerites. Aristotle deide in Calcide, and was i-brougȝt in to Stagerik. Whanne Alisaundre wente aȝenst þe Pers,*. [Perses, Cx.] Aristotle was besy*. [bysy, γ.] about philosofie, and made a storie*. [an historye, Cx.] of two hondred and fifty lawes. Aristotle put to meny þinges of philosofie and to ethik,*. [etyk, γ.] þat is þe sciens of þewes, he putte þat parfiȝt*. [parfyt, Cx.] welþe þat is nouȝt in worldly richesse;*. [worldliche riches, β.] also to philosophie he putte þe fiftye*. [fifte, α.; fifþe, β.; fyfth, Cx.] beyng. Trevisa. In libris de Celo et Mundo and [in]*. [From β. and γ.] oþer bookes also Aristotle clepeþ þe welken*. [clepuþ þe wolkon, γ.] [or firmamente]*. [Cx.] þat is above þe foure elementes, þe fifte body. Þanne it foloweþ in þe storie [that]*. [Cx.] he wiþdrewe not*. [nothing, Cx.] of dyvynite, he made problems*. [problemes, Cx., et infra.] medicinal of phisik and of kynde*. [kuynde, γ.] in foure score Page  365, vol.3 bookes, and problemys of perspective and of methaphesik. Trevisa. A problem is a questioun þat is harde to assoille, and also an hard arydels*. [redels, β. and Cx.; aredels, γ.] is also i-cleped a problem. Per|spective is a science þat specialliche longeþ to þe siȝt, þat sciens techeþ how a þing is i-seie*. [is seen, Cx.] and is lasse oþer more þan it semeþ, oþer evene as moche as it semeþ, evene oþer*. [or, Cx.] croked and riȝt as it is, oþer oþerweies i-schape*. [or otherwyse shapen, Cx.] þan it semeþ. Þan it foloweþ in þe storie.*. [thistorye, Cx.] He made statutes to iustefie*. [justifye, β.] þe citees of Grees,*. [Grece, β. and Cx.] by þe whiche statutes Phelipp*. [Philip, Cx.] determyned and made ende of plees bytwene þe Grees.*. [Grekes, β. and Cx.] He lefte after [hym]*. [From α. and Cx.] his owne*. [owne] om. α., β., and Cx.] sone Nichomachus, and his douȝter Paritharda,*. [Pitharda, α., β., and Cx.; Pi|tarda, γ.] and ful*. [fol, γ.] meny disciples, amonge the whiche*. [whoche, γ.] Theofrastus was of grete name; he made þe book of nupcius*. [de nupciis, β., γ., and Cx.] of spousails. Aristotel made a þowsand*. [þousond, γ.] bookes, and lovede to folwe þe sothe,*. [to folowe truth, Cx.] and nouȝt forsake þing þat was opounliche*. [oponlych, γ.] i-knowe.*. [openly knowen, Cx.] Avicenna preyseþ hym wel, libro 3o. Metaphysicæ suæ,*. [Methapharo suo, Cx.] and Raby Moyses, libro primo, capitulo 4o, and Agellius,*. [Agellus, Cx.] libro 8o, capitulo 3o, and Iohn in suo Policratico, libro 7o. Þis*. [þes, γ.] is he þat mevede*. [meovede, γ., et infra.] Achademia*. [Archademia, Cx.] more wiþ Page  367, vol.3 strengþe of resouns þat*. [þan, α, β., and Cx.] it was i-meved wiþ strong blastes of wynde, for þoruȝ*. [þurȝ, β.; þorouȝ, γ.] his besynesse þe Achademici þat were left after Plato mevede doutes wel nygh*. [neiȝ, β.; ny, γ.] of all þinges. Also Plinius, libro suo, seiþ þat [þe]*. [From α. and Cx.] grete Alisaundre brende in covetise of knowleche of þe kynde of bestes, and sente to Aristotel meny þowsandes*. [þousondes, γ.] of men of Grees,*. [Grece, β.; Gres, γ.] of Asia, and of*. [of] om. α.] Tracia, þat fedde bestes and foules wilde and tame, and al þat beeþ*. [buþ, γ.] i-take wiþ haukynge, oþer wiþ hontynge, and hadde alle maner bestes in kepyng in hyves,*. [yn huyves, γ.] in layes, in fisshe weres and pondes,*. [poundes, γ.] for he wolde knowe al þing þat is brouȝt forþ in kynde. Aristotle examyned hem al besiliche,*. [bisiliche, β.; ham al bysylich, γ.; al hem besyly, Cx.] and made aboute an fifty volyms*. [volums, γ.; a fyfty volumes, Cx.] of þe kynde of bestes. Þerfore Plinius de Naturis Rerum, libro 2o, seiþ þat som men telleþ þat Aristotil made his bookes so schortliche and so hard for envie, and for vaynglorie, oþer me may*. [me may] om. Cx.] saye*. [segge, γ.] þat he made his bookes so shortliche and so hard*. [so schortliche and so hard] om. γ. and Cx.] in þat manere to use of studiers*. [studieris, β.; studyers, γ.; stu|dientes, Cx.] as the [sciens axeþ: for]*. [From α. and Cx.] sciens is aboute þing þat is good and harde to knowe. Trevisa. Here take hede þat here al þing þat haþ lif and felynge is i-cleped*. [y-clepud, γ.] a beste. Þan it folweþ in þe storie.*. [thystory, Cx.]Page  369, vol.3 Aristotel whanne he schulde deie heet þat his sotel*. [sotil, β.; sotyl, γ.; subtyll, Cx.] bookes schulde be i-buried wiþ hym in his grave, for þey*. [hy, γ.] þat come after hym schulde have no profite*. [proufyt, Cx.] þerof, but I*. [y, β.; y wot, γ.] woot not by what vertue of kynde oþer of craft, þat I*. [y, β.; y segge, γ.] seie nouȝt*. [that I saye not, Cx.] by wonder of wicchecraft, þat þe*. [þe] om. Cx.] sepulchre haþ so appropred þerto the*. [there to that, Cx.] place þat is aboute hit þat no man may now come in to þat place. Som*. [somme, Cx.] men telleþ*. [say, Cx.] þat þe*. [þe] om. Cx.] antecrist schal knowe þat place, and loke and se þe bookes þat beeþ þere i-hidde,*. [buþ þer yhud, γ.] but ho*. [who, α., γ., and Cx.] dar trowe þinges þat ben in doute and uncertayne. Of þe deþ of Aristotel, Gregorius Nauȝanȝenus in his tretis*. [tretice, Cx.] uppon*. [apon, γ.] þat [word]*. [From α. and Cx.] of þe apostel,*. [þapostel, γ.] "þe wisdom of þis world*. [world] om. Cx.] is folie to fore God," and seiþ þat in Grees*. [sayd that in Grece, Cx.] at a place þat hatte þe blake brugge þe see ebbeþ and floweþ as it were at ones in þe same place, and Aristotil come and wolde knowe þe cause why, and byhelde*. [byheelde hit, β.; byhuld, γ.] it, and toke hede longe tyme; and Page  371, vol.3 for he myȝte*. [coude, Cx.] not fynde þe cause why, for greet indignacioun he spak to þe water, and seide, "For I*. [y, β.] may nouȝte [compre|hende and]*. [Cx.] take þe þou schalt take me;" and so he fel in to þe water and dreynt*. [drent, β.] hym self. Trevisa. It is wonder þat Gregorius Nauȝanȝenus telleþ so made a ungoodly tale*. [so mad a magel tale, α. γ.; mad a magil tale, β.; soo madde a magye tale, Cx.] of so worþy a prince of philosofres as Aristotil was. Why telleþ he nouȝt how*. [houȝ, γ.] Aristotil declareþ nouȝt*. [nought] om. β., γ., and Cx.] þe mater*. [matier, Cx.] of ebbynge and flowing of þe see, 2o Meth.*. [secundo meth., Cx.]? Why telleþ he nouȝt how*. [why, Cx.] it is i-write in þe book of þe appel*. [appul, γ., et infra.] [how Aristotel deyde and hylde*. [huld, γ.; helde, Cx.] an appel]*. [From α. and Cx.] in his hond [and hadde]*. [From α. and Cx.] comfort of þe smyl,*. [smelle, β. and Cx.] and tauȝte his scoleres how þey*. [hy, γ., et infra.] schulde lyve and come to God, and be wiþ God wiþ outen ende. And at þe laste his hond gan*. [began, Cx.] to quake, and þe appel fil doun of*. [fylle downe from, Cx.] his hond, and his face wax*. [wexe, β.] al wan,*. [pale, Cx.] and so Aristotil ȝelde*. [ȝulde, γ.] up þe goost and deyde. Þan it foloweþ in þe storie.*. [thystory, Cx.] Aristotel his successour was Theofrastus, and hadde þat name for his noble spekynge of God, and*. [and] om. Cx.] so seiþ þe maister in historiis*. [of thistoryes, Cx.] super librum Machabeorum. This*. [þes, γ., et infra.] Theofrastus made a book de Nupciis, of wedlok, and cleped þe book Theofrastus his Aureolus. Þere*. [þar, γ., et infra.] he desputeþ clereliche of þe tene*. [teone, γ.] and Page  373, vol.3 angwische of wedded folk.*. [anguysshe of wedded men, Cx.] Ieronimus takeþ*. [talketh, Cx.] moche of þat book aȝenst Iovinianus, and [this]*. [Cx.] Theofrastus made anoþer book of frendschipe, and putteþ [and preferreth]*. [Cx.] frendschipe to fore alle oþer þinges of men. Me seiþ þat þis Theofrastus accusede kynde,*. [kuynde for α, γ.] for he*. [it, Cx.] ȝaf lenger lif to oþer bestes þan to mankynde. Þere it is i-seide þat it is spedful*. [spedfol, γ.] þat frendes love*. [lovye, γ.] wel, and nouȝt assaie hem þat þey loveþ; also it is i-write þere [that]*. [Cx.] lovynge men haveþ*. [habbeþ, γ.] blynde domes. Eutropius.