The Canterbury tales
Geoffrey Chaucer
F.N. Robinson

The Prologue to the Tale of Sir Thopas

Whan seyd was al this miracle, every man
     691
As sobre was that wonder was to se,
     692
Til that oure hooste japen tho bigan,
     693
And thanne at erst he looked upon me,
     694
And seyde thus: what man artow? quod he;
     695
Thou lookest as thou woldest fynde an hare,
     696
For evere upon the ground I se thee stare.
     697
Approche neer, and looke up murily.
     698
Now war yow, sires, and lat this man have place!
     699
He in the waast is shape as wel as I;
     700
This were a popet in an arm t' enbrace
     701
For any womman, smal and fair of face.
     702
He semeth elvyssh by his contenaunce,
     703
For unto no wight dooth he daliaunce.
     704
Sey now somwhat, syn oother folk han sayd;
     705
Telle us a tale of myrthe, and that anon.
     706
Hooste, quod I, ne beth nat yvele apayd,
     707
For oother tale certes kan I noon,
     708
But of a rym I lerned longe agoon.
     709
Ye, that is good, quod he; now shul we heere
     710
Som deyntee thyng, me thynketh by his cheere.
     711