The early South-English legendary ; or, Lives of saints. I. Ms. Laud, 108, in the Bodleian library. Edited by Carl Horstmann.
Horstmann, Carl, b. 1851.

11. S. Dunstan.*. [This legend, and S. Cristofer, I have edited before in 'Lemcke, Jahrbuch für rom, und engl. phil., 1875.']

SEint Dunston was of enguelonde : i-come of guode more.
Miracle ore louerd dude for him : þe ȝuyt he was un-bore.
For þo he was in his moder wombe : In a candel-masse day,
Þat folk was muche at churche : ase hit to þe tyme lay:
As huy stoden alle with heore liȝt : riȝt also men stondeth ȝuyt nou,
heore liȝt queincte ouer-al : þat no mon nuste hou;
here þat liȝt barnde swiþe wel : and here it was al oute.
Þat folk stod al in gret wonder : and weren in grete doute,
And bispeken ech to oþur : in ȝwuche manere it were
Þat it queinte so sodeinliche : al þat liȝt þat huy bere.
Also huy stoden and þarof speken : in gret wonder ech-on,
Seint Dunstones moder taper : a-fuyre werth a-non
Þat heo huld in hire hond— : heo nuste ȝwannes it cam.
Þat folk stod and þat bihuld : and gret wonder þar-of it nam;
No man nuste fro whannes it cam : bote þoru ore louerdes grace.
Þarof huy tenden alle heore liȝt : þat weren in þe place. Page  20
Ȝwat was þat, þat ore louerd crist : fram heouene þat liȝt sende [folio 30]
And þat folk þat þare stode aboute : heore taperes þarof tende,
Bote þat of þulke holi child : þat was in hire wombe þere
Al enguelond scholde beo iliȝt : bet þane hit euer er were?—
Þo þis child was i-bore : his freond nomen þer-to hede,
huy leten hit do to Glastingburi : to norischci and to fede,
And to techen him his bileue al-so : his pater noster and crede.
Þat child wax and wel i-þevȝ : ase it moste nede.
To þe world he nam luyte ȝeme : for to alle godnesse he drouȝ;
Ech man þat heorde of him speke : hadde of him ioye i-novȝ.
Þo he couþe mannes wit : to his vncle he gan go,
Þe Erchebischop of caunterburi : Aldelm þat was þo.
With him he maude ioye i-novȝ : and euere þe leng þe more,
Þo he i-sei of his guodnesse : and of his wise lore.
For gret deinte þat he hadde of him : he dude him sone bringue
To þe prince of Engelond : Aþelston þe kyngue.
Þe king him maude ioye i-nouȝ : and grauntede al his bone,
Of ȝwat þing þat he wolde him bidde : ȝif it were to done.
Seint Dunston him bad ane place : þare he was forth i-brouȝt,
In þe toun of Glastingburi : þat he ne wernde him nouȝt.
Þe king grauntede him is bone a-non : and after him al-so
Edmund, is broþer, þo he was king : and in his power ido.
To Glastingburi he wende sone : þe guode man seint Dunston,
Þo boþe þe kingues ȝeue him leue : Eadmund and Athelston.
¶ A fair Abbeye he let þare a-rere : ase men i-seoth þare ȝuyt stonde,
Of blake Monekes, þat was a-rerd : þe furste of Enguelonde—
For ech Abbeie of Enguelonde : þat of blake Monekes is
Of þe hous of Gastingburi : furst sprong and cam, iwis.
Him-sulf he nam þe Abite þere : and Monek formest bi-cam;
Sone he was Abbot of þe hous : and gret couent to him nam.
he makede þare godes seruise : studefast and stable i-novȝ;
Þat couent þat þare-inne was : to alle guodnesse drouȝ.
Þis holi Abbod seint Dunston : hadde gret power
With þe king Eadmund, þo he was king : he was is conseiller.
After þe king Eadmundes deþe : a guode ȝwyle it was a-gon Page  21
Þat Edwyne, is sone, was king i-maud : ake nouȝt riȝt sone after a-non.
¶ Þis Edwyne hadde ful vuel red : and þare-aftur he drovȝ.
With seint Dunston he was wroth : and with wel gret wovȝ
Of his Abbeye he drof him out : and dude him schame i-novȝ;
Þe more schame þat he him dude : þe more þe guode man lovȝ.
he let driue him out of Enguelonde : and let crien him fleme.
Þis guode man wende out wel glad : ne tok he none ȝeme.
To þe Abbeie of seint Amaunt : bi-ȝeonde se he drouȝ,
And soriornede þare longue : and ladde guod lijf inovȝ.
¶ þo þe king Edwyne was ded : Edgar, þat was is broþer.
After him was king I-maud : for he was ner þane ani oþur.
Swyþe guod man he bi-cam : and louede wel holi churche,
And ech man þat him to guode radde : aftur him he gan wurche.
¶ Men tolden him of seint Dunston : þat is broþer drof out of londe
With vnriȝtht for is guodnesse : and he bi-gan him vnderstonde:
After him he sende a-non : þat he come a-ȝen sone
And with him bi-leue is conseiler : of þat he hadde to done.
Seint Dunston cam hom a-ȝen : and faire was vnder-fongue,
And hadde his Abbeye al in pays : fram ȝwuche he hadde i-beo longue.
Swyþe wel he was with þe king : and al his conseiller;
Men speken muche of his guodnesse : wel wide feor and ner.
¶ Hit bi-fel þat þe Bischop : of wyrecestre was ded:
Þe kyng and þe Erchebischop Eode : þar-of nomen heore red
And þene holie Abbod seint Dunston : Bischop huy maden þere,
For he scholde beo herre in godes lawe : þei it a-ȝein is wille were.
Some men axeden at þe Erchebischope : of Caunterburi sire Ode
Ȝware-fore þat he him Bischop maude : and ȝwy his graces weren so guode.
"For he schal," seide þis guode Man : "aftur me here bee
Erchebischop of Caunterburi : and þat Men schullen i-see."
"Ȝwat wostþou?" þis oþere seiden : "þou spext folliche, i-wis,
Þou nost non more þane þi fot : op-on god al it is."
"Mine leue frend," seide þis holie Man : "ȝe ne dorre me blamie nouȝt, Page  22
For ich wot wel ȝwat ore louerd crist : in mi Mouth hath i-brouȝt.
And ho-so with-seith ouȝt of þulke þinge : þat ich eov habbe i-sed,
Þe soþe he mai seo, ȝif he liueth : after þat ich am ded."
¶ Bischop he was of londone : seint Dunston, sethþe al-so,
Of londone and of wyrecestre : and heold boþe to.
hit bi-fel þat þe Erchebischop : of Caunterburi was ded:
Þe pope and þe king Edgar : þar-of nomen heore red
And mauden þane guode man seint Dunstan : Erchebischop þere.
Guode men þat him i-knewen : wel glade þar-of were.
Þe cristindom of Enguelonde : to guod stat he drovȝ
And þe riȝtes of holi churche : he heold up faste i-novȝ.
he fourmede þoruȝ al enguelond : þat ech person scholde cheose
To witien him chaste fram lecherie : oþur his churche leose.
Seint Athelwold was þulke tyme : Bischop of winchestre,
And Oswold, þe guode man : Bischop of wurecestre:
Þeos twei Bischopes with seint Dunston : weren al at one rede,
And Edgar þe guode king : to done þat guode dede.
Þeos þreo Bischopes wenden a-boute : þoruȝ al Enguelonde
And euerech luþer person casten out : heom ne miȝhte non atstonde;
heore churchene and heore oþer guod : clanliche heom bi-nome
And bi-setten as on guode men : þoruȝ þe popes graunt of rome.
Eyȝhte an fourti Abbeies : of Monekes and of nonnes
Of þat tresur huy a-rerden in Enguelonde : þat of persones was so i-wonne.*. [[Here a leaf is torn out in the MS., with the rest of this and the beginning of the following legend; only the first words of vv. 131-151 are preserved on a fragment of the leaf. MS. Vernon, which has the same text, continues:]]
[ffor so hit was bet biset : þen hit were*. [al. was] er on schrewe—
ffor whonne gode Maystres beoþ : sum goodnesse heo wolleþ schewe.
Gode weoren þe þreo Bisschopes : þat þulke tyme weren þo—
Þe betere hit is in Engelonde : for hem euere-mo.
¶ Vr lord ȝaf seint Dunston : on eorþe so feir grace
Þat on a tyme, as he was : in a priue place,
his ffader and his Modur ek : in þe Ioye of heuene an-heih,
Aftur þat heo weoren dede : wel aperteliche he hem seih.
Gret loue vr lord him kudde : whon he him schewede þere
So muche of his priuyte : þe while he alyue were! Page  23
¶ As he lay a noþur time : in his reste a niht,
he sayh þe Ioye of heuene : and þe place þer-inne wel briht;
Aungels he herde syngen also : a Murie song þer-Inne,
Þat me syngeþ in holy Chirche : whon me þe Masse bi-ginne:
Kyrie leyson xpe leyson : was þat Murie song—
Þe holi Mon þat þis i-herde : hit ne þhouhte him no-þing long.
Wel ouhte he to heuene come : at his ende-day
Þat, while he was alyue : so muche of heuene he say!
¶ harpe he louede swiþe wel : for of harpe he couþe i-nouh.
A day he sat in his solas : and a lay þer-on he drouh.
Þe harpe he heng vp bi þe wouh : þo hit was tyme to ete;
Þo hit was redi þer-to ibrouht : he sat doun to his mete.
Of heuene he gon þenche sone : of ioye þat was þere,
Of þe Ioyful blisse þat þer was : among halewen þat þer were.]
he*. [These beginnings of the next verses are extant in L. on a fragment of the fol.] sat [as þeiȝ he weore i-nome : so muche þer-on he þouhte.]
his h[arpe, þat heng so bi þe wouh : of whom he luyte Rouhte,]
heo gan [to kuiþe his holy þouht : ded treo þeiȝ hit were,]
Also it o[vr lordus wille was— : hire herden alle þat weoren þere.]
Al bi hire-[self heo gon harpen : a Murie Antempne iwis]
Þat men s[ingeþ ȝut in holy churche : þat on Englisch is þis]:
"halewene s[oulen glade beoþ : þat in heuene beoþ i-do,]
Þat siweden [vr lordes wey : and for him schedden also]
heore blod for [his swete loue. : þerfore heo schulen wone]
And kyngues*. [Vern. knyhtes] be [wiþ-outen ende : wiþ crist Godus sone."]
Þe*. [al. þis] Antenene þa[t murie is : as þis folk iherden alle,]
Þe harpe song a[l bi hire-self : as heo heng bi þe walle.]
Faire grace ore l[ord him schewede þer : whon þat dede treo]
Scholde so singue [of þulke Ioye : þat he scholde Inne beo!]
Louerd, i-hered beo [þi grace : & þi miȝte also]
Þat woldest her*. [MS. for] [alyue for him : such miracle do.]*. [Vv. 143-4, om. in Vern., are added from MS. Harl.]
¶ þo þis holie man [hedde i-lyued : on eorþe mony a day]
And his ende-dai [was neih i-come : as he him-self sayȝ,]
An holi þoresdai [he wex sek : as hit fel in þe ȝere.]
he liet him clep[e of his frendes : þat specials to hym were,]
his men þat h[im serueden ek : he lette hem clepe also,]
[And for-ȝaf hem heore trespas : þat heo him hedden misdo,
And a-soylede hem of heore sunnes : as he in Godus bendes lay.
And so he lay in þulke tyme : and eke þene ffriday. Page  24
he lette clepe þe saturday : þe ffreres bi-foren him alle
And bad hem alle haue god day : and seide what him*. [r. hem] scholde bi-falle;
he let him don al his Rihtes : and vr lordus flesch he nom,
And wende out of þis world : and to heuene wel sone com.
Now, swete lord seint Dunston : þat vre Erchebisschop were,
Bring vs to þe Ioye of heuene : as Angles þi soule bere. Amen.