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 octavumdecimum.

AFFTER Iulianus, Severus of Affrica, of þe contray þat hatte*. [heyghte, Cx.] Tripolis, was emperour sixtene ȝere. Þis was y-made em|perour and no mo of Affrica ffirst*. [furst, γ.]; þis was enchetour,*. [eþcheitour, β.; encheytour, γ.; eschetour, Cx.] and stigh up by dyvers office and dignitees for to*. [for to] unto, Cx.] he was emperour. He was wel*. [right, Cx.] scars and sturne*. [sterne, Cx.] of kynde*. [steurn of kuynde, γ.]; he overcome þe Parthes and the Arabies,*. [Arabes, α. and Cx.] and þerfore he was i-cleped Parthicus*. [Perthicus, Cx.] and Arabicus. He made a wal in Bretayne þat streccheþ*. [strechcheþ, γ.] sixe score myle and tweyne anoon to*. [anoon to] unto, Cx.] þe see, and he deide at ȝork. Beda, libro primo, capitulo 3o.*. [3o] om. α. and Cx.] Þis*. [Severus, added in Cx.] governede þe comounte stalworþeliche,*. [stalwordlich, β.; myghtly, Cx.] but*. [but] and, Cx.] wiþ grete travail, and at þe laste he wente into Bretayne, and made wal of torfes,*. [torves, α. and γ.; turves, Cx.] and nouȝt of stones, as som men weneþ, and departede Britayne by Page  45, vol.5 þat wal; he dalf up torves of þe grounde, and made up an hiȝ wal, so þat tofore þe wal is þe diche þat torves were i-dolve of*. [dolven out, Cx.]; þere uppon beeþ i-pyȝt strong poles and stakes of tree. He strengþede ofte þat wal wiþ many toures, and deide aftirward at ȝork, and lefte aftir hym tweyne sones, Basyanus and Geta. But Geta was i-iuged*. [y-juget, γ.] for a comoun enemy, and y-do*. [put, Cx.] to dethe; Basianus was i-cleped Antonius, and hadde þe kyngdom. Gaufridus. Lucius kyng of Britouns deide wiþ oute children, and was i-buried at Gloucestre. Þanne fil*. [fyl, Cx.] stryf among þe Britouns, and þe power of Romayns was oversett.*. [was oversett] om. Cx.] Þerfore Severus þe senatour, wiþ tweie legiouns, was i-sent into Bretayne: he made a wal at the cost of þe comynte, bytwene Deire*. [Deira, α. and Cx.] and Albania, þat beeþ þe norþ side of Engelond and Scotlond; he made þe wal aȝenst Fulgencius kyng of Pictes, and fauȝt afterward at ȝork, and was i-slawe and y-buried þere, and lefte aftir hym tweie sones, oon heet*. [heet] hit, α.] Geta, his moder was of Rome; þat oþir heet Bassianus, and his modir was of Bretayne; þerfore was greet fiȝting bytwene þe tweyne*. [two, Cx.] breþeren, and Geta was i-slawe and i-buried þere,*. [and i-buried þere] om. α. and Cx.] and Bassianus hadde þe kyngdom. Gaufridus. Þe Bretouns chees*. [chose, Cx.] Basianus, for his moder was a Britoun; but þe Ro|mayns chees Geta, for his modir was a Romayn; but þey fouȝte, and Geta was i-slawe of oon Carancius.*. [of oon Carancius] om. α., γ., and Cx.] [℞.] But Page  47, vol.5 Eutropius wil mene*. [wil mene] sayth, Cx.] in storie of Rome þat Geta was i-slawe at þe citee Edessa, whanne he fouȝt aȝenst þe Parthes; but Gau|fridus, in þe storie of Britouns, seiþ þat Geta was i-slawe of oon Carancius, a tiraunt þat resede on*. [resede on] frayed with, Cx.] hym. Symachus*. [Synachus, γ.] is*. [is] was tho, Cx.] in his floures; he was þe fourþe þat translated holy writte out of Hebrewe into Grewe;*. [Hebru into Gru, α.] he was of þe Samarites, and tornede to þe Iewene*. [Iewes, Cx.] lawe. Eusebius, libro 4o.*. [4o] om. α.; sexto, Cx.] Þat tyme was Narsisus in his floures,*. [flowring, Cx.] bisshop of Ierusalem: hit is i-wrete þat he was a wel*. [right, Cx.] trewe*. [truwe, γ. (bis).] iuge, and stedefast, and wolde nouȝt bend,*. [beende, γ.] but alway holde the truþe and ȝeve trewe*. [truwe, γ. (bis).] doomes*. [sentences, Cx.]; þerfore þre men þat hadde*. [hadden, β.] evel trowynge of*. [þat were culpable in, Cx.] hem self, feynede a blame aȝenst*. [þat were culpable in, Cx.] þe bisshop, and brouȝt forþ witnesse of hem self. Þe firste prayede þe*. [þat, γ.] fuyre of hevene moste brenne hym, but it were sooth þat he seide. The secounde prayede þat þe kynges evel moste destroye*. [destruye, β. and γ.] hym, bote it were sooth þat he seide. Þe þridde prayde þat he moste leese*. [leose, γ.; bothe, added in Cx.] his eyȝen, but it were sooþ þat he seide. But þe grete ȝye*. [eyȝe, β.; ye, γ.] of Goddis ordynaunce Page  49, vol.5 brend*. [brande, γ.] þe firste witnesse, as he hadde i-prayed, and al his hous þerto, and destroyed*. [distruyde, γ.] the secounde witnesse by the kyngel*. [kynges, α. and Cx.] evel. Þe þridde sigh how*. [houȝ, α. and γ.] his felawys*. [felous, α.] spedde, and dradde ful*. [fol, γ.] sore, and knowlechede his trespas tofore al the peple, and weep*. [wept, Cx.] so meny teeres and so ofte for þat synne and trespas, þat he loste boþe his eyȝen. Aftir þe passioun of Victor, Zephirinus was pope as it were*. [as it were] om. Cx.] nyne ȝere; he ordeyned þat everiche Cristen man of twelve ȝere olde and above schulde everiche ȝere ones fonge Goddis body an*. [receyve the sacrament and be hoseled on, Cx.] Ester day; þis*. [þis] he, Cx.] made menye omelyes and pistlis,*. [pistils, α.; pistels, β.; epistles, Cx.] and so of his makynge is þe legende þat is i-rad a*. [From α. and γ.] children masse*. [þat is i-rad a children masse] om. Cx.] day, and bygynneþ "Zelus quo tendat," and so forþ, and also of the decollacioun of Seint Iohn. Eusebius, libro 6o. Seynt Leonides, Origenes his fadir was i-martired*. [martrid, Cx.] at Alexandria, þe firste day of Marche. His sone Origenes, a childe of eyȝtene ȝere, þat hiȝte Adaman|cius also, caste for to folwe*. [folewe, β.] þe ensample of his fader. But by þe ordenaunce of God, and besynesse*. [besynes, Cx.] of his moder, þe childe Page  51, vol.5 was i-kept to ful greet profit*. [prouffit, Cx.] of meny men, ffor sche*. [heo, β.] hidde*. [hudde, γ.] þe childes cloþes þat nyȝt, for he schulde not goo out amorwe.*. [on the morrow, Cx.] Þerfore þe childe wroot a lettre to his fader how he was i-holde at home by sleythe of his modir, and prayde his fadir þat he wolde be stedefast, and holde forþ þat he hadde bygonne. While þis was a litel childe he axed ofte questiouns of his fadir, and axede how*. [houȝ, γ.] holy writte was i-ȝeve to us by þe inspiracioun of þe Holy Goost, and what of Goddes counsail is i-hyd*. [y-hud, γ.] in holy writt in symplenesse of speekynge and of wordes. Þere me seith*. [þere me seith] Hit is sayd, Cx.] þat ofte whan þe chylde were onslepe*. [aslepe, α., β., and γ.; was aslepe, Cx.] þe fadir wolde unhele þe childe his breest, and worshippe it, as it were God his temple, and kusse it ful sweteliche, and seie*. [segge, γ.] þat wel was hym þat evere he gat*. [a gaat, γ.; that gate ever, Cx.] suche*. [sich, β.] a childe. Þanne whan þe fader was i-martired, þe childe of eyȝtene ȝere, as it is forseide, whan his fadir*. [fadris, β.] catel was i-take by enchetes,*. [eþchetes, β.; encheetes, γ.; taken be thescheters, Cx.] he and his modir, þat was wydewe,*. [widue, β.] and his eyȝte breþeren, were i-left in greet povert and meschief.*. [meschyef, Cx., et infra.] Þanne at Alexandria he heeld*. [huld, γ.] a gramer scole for to Page  53, vol.5 have liflode for hym and for*. [for] om. Cx.] his; but evere*. [evere] om. γ.] among he tornede men to Cristen fey, and halp and socoured hem þat were pursued*. [poursiewed, Cx.] and brouȝt in mescheef, and conforted hem þat were i-lad to dethe for þe fey of holy chirche. He usede moche wakynge and fastynge; he foundede*. [fonded, β.; vondede, γ.] biseliche by ensample of siker povert to fulfille*. [fulfulle, γ.] þe counsail of*. [foundede . . . counsail of] fol|lowed the saying of, Cx.] the gospel þat counsailleþ þat me schulde nouȝt have tweie curtels*. [kirtles, β.] noþer care for the day þat comeþ amorwe.*. [tomorowe, Cx.] So þat ȝif he knewe eny þat kepte of here owne catel for to lyve by, he refused hem þat*. [þat] and, Cx.] wolde nouȝt have hem in his loore. He ȝede*. [ȝeode, γ.; wente, Cx.] meny ȝere wiþ oute hosen and schoon; alwey he spared wyn, but it*. [but if it, Cx.] were for help of his stomak. In his ȝouþe he dede oon dede þat semede of unperfiȝt witte,*. [wyt, α.; wytte, Cx.] but it was a token of ful byleve and of perfiȝt chastitee, as the gospel seiþ, "Som beeþ*. [buþ, γ.] i-gilded þat gildeþ*. [ghelded that ghelde, Cx.] hem self for þe kyng|dom of God:" þerfore nouȝt onliche by cause of chastitee, but also for he schulde preche to men and to wommen priveliche,*. [and oponlych, added in γ.] for to putte of al*. [manere evel, added in Cx.] suspecioun he gilded hym self pryveliche.*. [for to putte . . . pryveliche] om. Cx.]Page  55, vol.5 Mamea, Alisaundre þe emperour his modir, desirede to heere*. [hyre, α.] Origenes speke, and sente after hym for he schulde come to here [out of Alexandria into Antiochia. Þis wiþ]*. [From α., β., γ., and Cx.] out oþer writers he*. [he] om. Cx.] hadde sevene ȝongelinges and sevene ȝonge maydens þat write*. [writen, β.] as he ȝaf hem of*. [of] by, Cx.] his owne mouth dyvers matires and bookes. He wroot so moche þat Ierom knowlecheþ þat he hadde i-rad of Orygenes his bookes foure þowsand volumes al*. [al] om. Cx.] wiþ oute pistles þat he hadde i-write. Hit was a proverbe of hym, "Suche as was his lore, suche was his lyf:" he sleep*. [sleop, γ.] uppon no bed, he tastede noþer flesche ne*. [noþer, γ.] wyn. Giraldus. Origenes were*. [was, Cx.] nygh*. [neiȝ, β.] þe gretteste of holy writers ȝif he hadde*. [hadde] om. Cx.] nouȝt i-erred in so moche speche. And [as]*. [From Cx.] alle þe Latyn poetes folweþ Ennyus, [so]*. [From Cx.] al þe*. [þe] om. α.] expositours folweþ*. [folowen, Cx.] Origines. Also þis in his manere translated þe bible out of Hebrew into Grew. Also he foundede to amende þe translacioun*. [translaciouns, α. and Cx.] of oþer doctours, of Aquila, of Symachus, and Theodocion; and þere þey hadde more þan was in Ebrew,*. [Hebrew, α.] he made a signe þat hatte obe|lus, and i-shape evelong*. [endlong, Cx.] as a swerd;*. [ȝerde, α. and β.; ȝerd, γ.] and þere they hadde lasse þan was in Hebrewe, oþer speke*. [spak, Cx.] derkliche, he made a signe þat hatte asteriscus and is i-shape liche a sterre. Ieromus, epistola 41. Page  57, vol.5 Þere Origenes seide wel, no man seide bettre; and þere he seide evel, no man seide wors. And whanne he passede wel nygh alle oþere doctoures in his oþere bookes, he passede hym self super Cantica Canticorum; he spak a þowsand tretys in chirche, and made exposiciouns wiþ oute nombre, and cleped hem themos.*. [thamos, γ.] ȝif eny þat folweþ hym putteþ*. [potteþ, γ.] errour aȝenst us, he may take hede þat þe grete Homerus slepeþ*. [slepte, β. and Cx.] somtyme, for in a long work it is laweful to slepe som tyme; we schal nouȝt folwe his vices ȝif we mowe not folwe his virtues; þeigh ȝif*. [Therefor yf, Cx.] oon of his bookes is*. [is] be, Cx.] defouled, þere in his book þat hatte*. [þese in his book þat hatte] whiche book heyghte, Cx.] Periarchon*. [Periarchion, γ.] þey*. [þey] wherenne he, Cx.; α, γ.] understondeþ evel of þe Fader, wors of þe Sone, and worst of þe Holy Goost; and þere he seiþ þat Crist wil somtyme, þoruȝ*. [þoroȝ, γ.] his grete mercye, save þe angels þat fil doun fro hevene; and he leieþ*. [leiþ, β.] for hym þe*. [þe] that, Cx.] vers of þe sawter,*. [sauȝter, α.] "God schal nouȝt be wrooþ for everemore, noþer manasse*. [menace, Cx.] withouten ende," schal al his bookes for þis be destroyed? He hym self Origenes, in a pistle þat he writeþ*. [wrote, Cx.] to Fabian pope of Rome, makeþ moche sorwe for he hadde suche þinges i-write, [and putte þe cause Page  59, vol.5 of þat folye uppon oon Ambrose, þat putte forþ his bookes, and hadde i-write]*. [From α., β., γ., and Cx.] priveliche, and made hem comoun, or þey were amended.*. [corrected and amended, β. and γ.; er he hadde corrected and amended them, Cx.] "Myn freendes," quod he, "have*. [habbeþ, γ.] i-doo me þis, ȝif I*. [Ich, β.] holde my pees I schal be holde gelty,*. [gilty, α.; gylty, Cx.] and ȝif I answere I schal be holde an enemy; eiþer condicioun is hard,*. [but, added in Cx.] of þe tweyne I schal chese*. [cheose, γ.] þe liȝtere." Aboute this tyme þe fifte translacioun was i-founde in a ton*. [tonne, γ.; toun, Cx.] at Iericho; þat translacioun is i-cleped Vulgata, the auctor þerof is unknowe. Hit seemeth þat þe comyn sawter*. [sauȝter, α.] þat we useth is i-take of þat translacioun, þey we folwe Ierom his translacioun in oþir bookes of holy writt. But Damasus þe pope made þe chirche of Rome folwe Ierom also in the sawter.*. [sauȝter, α.]Bassianus.