The babees book, Aristotle's A B C, Urbanitatis, Stans puer ad mensam, The lvtille childrenes lvtil boke, The bokes of nurture of Hugh Rhodes and John Russell, Wynkyn de Worde's Boke of keruynge, The booke of demeanor, The boke of curtasye, Seager's Schoole of vertue, &c. &c. with some French and latin poems on like subjects, and some forewords on education in early England. Ed. by Frederick J. Furnivall ...
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. 1825-1910,
Page  54

A Diatorie. [Lambeth MS. 853, ab. 1430 A.D., page 182.]

To be rulid bi þis diatorie do þi diligence, For it techiþ good diete & good gouernaunce.

IF so be þat lechis doon þee faile,
Vse good diete bi þe councel of me,—
Mesurable fedyng and temperat trauaile,—
And be not maliciose for noon aduersite,
But be meeke in trouble, glad in pouerte,
Not pensif ne þouȝtful for ony sodein chaunce,
Not grutchinge, but myrie aftir þi degree.
If fisijk lacke, make þis þi gouernaunce,
¶ Kepe from colde þi feet, þi stomak, & þin heed; [page 183]
Ete no raw mete, take good hede þerto,
Drinke holsum drinke, & feede þee on liȝt breed,
& with an appitid from þi mete looke þat þou goo.
Lede þi lijf in chastite, þou schalt finde it best so;
Drinke not vpon þi sleep, but do as y þee teche,
And bere no wraþþe to freende ne to foo;
vse not to soupe late, ne to drinke myche.
¶ Digne not on þe morewe to-fore þin appitide;
Cleer eir & walking makiþ good digestioun. Page  56
Drinke not bitwene melis for no froward delite
But if þurst or traueile ȝeue þee occasioun.
And ouer salt mete dooþ greet oppressioun
To feble stomakis þat wole not hem refreyne
From þingis þat ben contrarie to her complex|ioun,
Þei doon to her stomakis ofte myche peine.
¶ Vse no surfetis neiþir day ne nyght,
Neiþer ony rere soupers, which is but excesse;
And be waar of nodding heedis & of candil liȝt,
And also of long sleep and of ydilnesse
¶ The which of alle vicis sche is porteresse. [page 184]
And voide alle drunkelew folk, liers, & letchouris,
And alle hem þat vsen suche vnþriftynesse,
And also dijs pleiers and hacerdouris.
¶ To yuel talis ȝeeue noo credence;
Be not to hasti, ne to sodeyn veniable;
To poore folk do þou no violence;
Be gentil of langage, in fedinge mesurable;
On sundri metis be not gredi at þe table;
Long sleep aftir mete dooþ myche greuaunce.
Blame no condicioun which is commendable;
But to seie þe beste, sette alle þi plesaunce.
Use fier bi þe morewe, & to bedward at eue
Aȝens blake mystis and eir of pestilence;
And arise þou eerli if þou be in heele,
And first bi þe morewe do god reuerence.
To visite þe poore do þi diligence,
And on þe needi haue compassioun, Page  58
For good deedis causiþ mirþe in conscience,
And in heuene to haue greet possessioun.
Be not nyce in cloþinge passing þin astate; [page 185]
Be rewlid bi temperaunce while þou art a-lyue;
And with .iij. maner of folk be not at debate:
First with þi bettir be waar for to stryue,
Aȝens þi felaw noo quarel þou contryue,
With þi suget to stryue, it is but schame;
Þerfore y councelle þee, while þou art a-liue,
To liue in pees, and gete þee a good name.
¶ In two þingis stondiþ a mannis welþe,
In soule & bodi, who-so wole hem sewe,
Mesurable fedinge kepiþ a man in helþe,
And riȝt so is charite to þe soule dewe.
Forȝete not þis diete, for it is good & trewe;
Þouȝ it be bouȝt of no potecarie
Ne of noon oþer maister þat greet cunnynge can schewe,
Ȝit y councelle þee, be dietid bi þis diatorie.
Serue ȝe god deuoutly
And þe world truly,
Ete ȝe ȝoure mete mirili
and euere liue ȝe in reste.
Þanke ȝe euere god hyȝli;
Þouȝ þat ȝe liue here poreli,
He may amende it liȝtly
whanne him likiþ beste.*. [[A different and later version of this Poem was printed by Mr Halliwell from MS. Harl. 2251, fol. 4-5, in his Selection from the Minor Poems of Dan John Lydgate for the Percy Society, 1840, pp. 66-69. He remarks that the "poem is very common in manu|script, but several of the copies vary considerably from each other. It may be sufficient to refer to MS. Harl. 116, fol. 116; MS. Oxon. Bernard. 1479; MS. Rawl. Oxon. C. 86; MS. Arund. 168; MS. Sloan. 775; and MS. Sloan. 3554, which contains a Latin version. Ritson has inserted this in his list of Lydgate's works in two places, under Nos. 55 and 61." Harl. 5401 contains a late copy.]]