Mandeville's travels : the Egerton version
Mandevill, John, Sir, British Library. Manuscript. Egerton 1982.
Warner, George F. (George Frederic), Sir, 1845-1936.


[Of the prouince of Galilee, and where Antecrist schall be born; of Nazareth; of the age of oure Lady; of the day of doom; and of the customes of Jacobites, Surryenes; and of the vsages of Georgyenes.]

[folio 45]

FRA þis cuntree þat I hafe spoken off men gase to þe playne of Galilee and lefes þe hilles on þe ta syde. Galile es a cuntree of þe land of promissioun; and in þat cuntree es þe citee of Naym and þe citee of Capharnaum and of Corozaim and of Betsayda, whare sayne Petre and saynt Andrew was borne. 2. [The sentence [from the French text] omitted here is translated in C.] And at Corsaym sall Antecriste be borne. Bot sum men sayse he schall be borne in Babiloyne, and þerfore saise þe prophecie þus, "De Babilonia exiet Coluber, qui totum mundum deuorabit", þat es to say, "OfPage  55 Babiloyne sall a nedder 1. [a worm, C.] comme, þat sall deuoure all þe werld." And he þis antecriste sall be nurischt in Bethsaida, and he sall regne in Corozaym; and þerfore saise Haly Writte of þaim þus, "Ve tibi, Corozaym! Ve tibi, Bethsaida! Ve tibi, Capharnaum!" þat es to say, "Wa be to þe Corozaym ! Wa be to þe, Bethsaida! Wa be to þe, Capharnaum." Also þe Cane of Galilee es þare, iiii. myle fra Nazareth; and þare was sayn Symon borne. Þare also did oure Lord þe first miracle at þe wedding of Architriclyne, 2. [sc. architriclinus, the governor of the feast, John ii. 8.] when he turned water in to wyne. In þe marchez of Galilee betwene þe mountaynes was þe arch of Godd taken. And on þe toþer syde es þe hill of Endor in Hermon. 3. [mownt Hendor or Hermon. And þere about goth the broke of Torrens Cison, þat somtyme was clept the broke Radumu, C.] And a lytill þeine Barach, Abymalech son, and þe prophetisse Debbora ouercome þe oste of Ydumee, when Cisara þe kyng was slayne thurgh Iabel, Aber wyf, as tellez þe Byble. And in þat same place [folio 45b] Gedeon and ccc. men with him discoumfit three kynges, þat es to say Zeb, Zebee, and Salmana, and pursued ouer þe flum Iordan and slew þam and þaire folk for þe maste party. Fyue myle fra Naym es þe citee of Iesrael, þe whilk also es called Zaraym. Of þat citee was Iesabel, þe wikked qwene, þat gert sla vnriȝtwisely Naboth for his vyneȝarde. A lytill fra þis citee es þe felde of Mageddo, whare þe kyng of Samary slewe Iosias þe kyng of Iuda, þe whilk efterward was broght to þe mount Syon and grauen þare. Also a myle fra Iesrael er þe mountes of Gelboe, whare kyng Saul and Ionathas his son and a grete noumer of þe childer of Israel ware slayne in bataile. Wharfore kyng David weried þe forsaid mountes. 4. [cursed hem, as holy writt seyth, Montes Gelboe nec ros nec pluuia, &c. (ii. Sam. i. 21), þat is to seye, "ȝee hilles of Gelboe mouþer dew ne reyn com vpon ȝou," C.] And a myle þeine, toward þe este, es a citee þat men callez Citople or Bethsaym. Apon þe walles of þat citee hinged þe Philistenes þe heued of kyng Saul.

Fra þeine men gase thurgh þe playne of Galile to Nazareth, whilk was sum tyme a grete citee; bot now þer es noȝt bot a lytill village, and it es noȝt walled aboute. In Nazareth was oure Lady borne, bot scho was consayued at Ierusalem. Of Nazareth tuke oure Lord his to name. And þare wedded Ioseph oure Lady, when scho was xiiii. ȝere alde. And þare þe aungell Gabriel grette oure Lady, sayand þus, "Aue, gratia plena! Dominus tecum", þat es to say, "Hayle, Mary, full of grace! Godd es with þe." And in þat same place es a chapell, bigged by syde a piler of a kirk þat was þare in alde tyme; and þare es grete offering of Cristen [folio 46] pilgrimes. 5. [And this salutacioun was don in a place of a gret awteer of a faire chirche þat was wont to be som tyme, but is now all downe; and men han made a lityll resceyt besyde a pylere of þat chirche for to resceyue the offrynges of pilgrimes, C.] Þis chapell gers þe Sarzenes kepe riȝt straytely by cause of auauntage of þe offerandes. And þare er wonder euill Sarzenes, and mare cruell þan er in any oþer place; for þai hafe destruyd all þe kirkez þat warePage  56 wount to be þare. And þare es þe well of Gabriell, whare oure Lord was wont to bathe him, when he was ȝung; and at þat well was he wount to fecche his moder water; and þare was scho wount to wasch his clathez. 1. [clowtes, C.] Fra Ierusalem to Nazareth er iii. day iourneez. And þare was oure Lord nurischt. Nazareth es als mykill at say as Floure of Gardyne; and it may wele be called so, for þare was nurischt þe Floure of Lyf, þat es to say oure Lord Ihesu Criste. And twa myle fra Nazareth, in þe way as men gase to þe citee of Acon, es þe citee of Sephor. And halfe a myle fra Nazareth es þe leep þat oure Lord leped fra þe Iews, when þai ledd him apon a hie roche to hafe casten him downe and slayne him; bot he passed thurgh þam and leped till anoþer roche, whare his steppes er ȝit sene. And þerfore saise sum men, when þai hafe drede of thefez, þis verse þat es writen here, "Ihesus autem transiens per medium illorum ibat", 2. [Luke, iv. 30.] þat es to say "Ihesus furth passand ȝode thurgh þe middes of þam." And þai say also þir versez of þe sawter buke, "Irruat super eos formido et pauor in magnitudine brachii tui, Domine. Fiant immobiles, quasi lapis, donec pertransiat populus tuus, Domine, donec pertransiat populus tuus iste, quem possedisti", 3. [Exod. xv. 16.] þat es to say, "Fall on þaim drede in þe greteness of þine arm, Lord. [folio 46b] Be þai vnmouand as a stane vnto þat tyme þat þi folk passe, Lord, vnto þi folk passe, whilk þou boght." And when þis es said, a man may ga seurly withouten lettyng. And ȝe schall vnderstand þat oure lady saynt Mary, when scho bare Criste, was of xv. ȝere elde, and with him scho was in erthe xxxiii. ȝere and iii. monethes. And after his passioun scho liffed xxiiii. ȝere, and so scho liffed in þis erthe lxxii. ȝere and three monethes.

Fra Nazareth to þe mount Thabor es iii. myle, and it es a faire hill and a hie. And þare was sum tyme a toune and many kirkes, bot now þai er all destruyd. Bot ȝit þer es a place þat þai call þe Scole of oure Lord, whare he teched his disciples þe priuetez of heuen. And at þe fote of þat mount Melchisedech, þat was kyng of Ierusalem and Goddes preste, mette Abraham in þe commyng doune fra þat mount, when he come fra þe descomfiture of his enmys. And on þat hill oure Lord transfigured him self before Petre, Iames and Iohn, whare þai sawe him spekand with 4. [sawghe gostly, C] Moyses and Helyas. And þerfore said Petre, "Bonum est nos hic esse. Faciamus hic tria tabernacula", 5. [Matt. xvii. 4.] þat es to say "It es gude to be here. Late vs make three tabernacles." And Criste bad þam þat þai suld tell na man þat visioun vnto þe tyme þat he ware risen fra deed to lyfe. And apon þat same hill and in þat same place apon þe day of dome sall foure aungels blawe þaire bemes 6. [trompes, C.] and raise all þat er deed vnto [folio 47] þe lyf. And þai schall com in body and saule before Godd þe souerayne Iugge in þe vale of Iosaphat, to take þaire dome apon Pasch day, in þe tyme of Cristes resurreccioun. For, as doctoures saise, þe same tyme þat hePage  57 went till hell and heried it, þe same tyme sall he spoile þe werld and take his frendes and lede þam to ioy withouten end, and dampne þe wikked til ay lastand payne. 1. [and þanne schall euery man haue after his dissert, ouþer gode or euyll, but ȝit the mercy of God passe his rightwisnesse, adds C.]

Also a myle fra þe mount Thabor es þe mount Hermon; and þare was þe citee of Naym before þe ȝates of whilk oure Lorde raised þe widow son fra deed to lyfe. Also three myle fra Nazareth es þe castell of Saffra, whare Zebedeus and Alpheus childer ware borne. And seuen myle fra Nazareth es þe mount Cain; and vnderneth it es a well, whare Lamech slew Cayn with ane arowe, supposing he had bene a wylde beste. 2. [For this Kaym wente þorgh breres and busshes as a wylde best. And he had lyued fro the tyme of Adam his fadir vnto the tyme of Noe; and so he lyuede nygh to mlml ȝeer. And this Lamech was all blynd for elde, C.]Fra Saffra gase men to a citee þat es called Tyberias, þe whilk standez apon þe see of Galile. And, if all it be called a see, neuerþeles it es na see ne arme of þe see, bot a staunke of fresch water; and it es nere a hundreth furlanges lang and fourty on brede, and þer er many gude fischez þerin, and it commes oute of Iordan and rynnez thurgh þe myddes of þe citee. 3. [and hathe with in him gret plentee of gode fissche, and renneth in to flom Iordan. The cytee is not full gret, but it hath gode bathes with in him, C.] And it es riȝt profitable for þe cuntree. And þare þare it and Iordan partes es a grete brigg, by þe whilk men wendez oute of þe land of beheste in to þe land of Basan and in to þe land of Gerassen, þe whilk marchez apon Iordan.

And fra þeine may men wende to Damasc on three days, thurgh þe cuntree of Traconye, 4. [Trachonitis.] þe whilk lastez fra Hermon to þe see of Galilee, þe whilk also es called þe see of Tyberias or þe Staunkes of Genasareth. And [folio 47b] þis diuersetee of names it hase of þe citez þat standes þer apon. Apon þis see ȝode oure Lord drie fote, when he said to Petre, "Modice fidei, quare dubitasti?"5. [Matt. xiv. 31.] þat es to say, "Þou man of litil faith, whi had þou doute?" And þat was when he went to Criste on þe water, and was in poynt to drowne, and Criste tuke him by þe hand and said þe wordes þat I said before. And also Criste apperde til his disciples after his resurreccioun fischand in þis see and filled þaire nettes full of fisch, and þai broȝt him parte of a roste fisch and a hony cambe. In þis see also fisched Petre and Andrew, Iames and Iohn, when Criste called þam and bad þam folow him, and þai alssone left schippe and nettes and folowed him. In þis cite of Tiberias es þe tabil on whilk oure Lord ete with his disciples after his resurreccioun, of whilk etyng Haly Writte saise þus, "Cognouerunt Dominum in fractione panis", 6. [Luke xxiv. 35.] þat es to say, "Þai knew oure Lord in breking of breed." Besyde þis citee es a hill whare oure Lord fedd vm men with fyue laues and twa fisches. In þis citee also a wikked man on a tyme kest a brynnand fyrebrandPage  58 at oure Lord for to stirre him til ire and hitt him on þe heued, þe whilk brand efterwardes hitt on þe erthe and stakk still þerin and growed, and by process of tyme it wex a grete tree, and ȝitt it growes þare. 1. [and the bark þere of is all lyk coles, adds C.] Also at þe heued of þis see of Galile, toward þe north, es a castell þat [supplied by ed.] es called Sephor nere Capharnaum, and in all þe [folio 48] haly land es þer noght a stranger castell þan it es. In þat castell es a gude litil toune, whilk hase þe same name þat þe castell hase. 2. [and þere is a gode toun benethe, þat is clept also Saphor, C.] And in þat castell was saynt Anne oure Lady moder borne; and þare was þe hous of Centurio. Þat cuntree es called Galilea Gentium, and it fell in þe lote 3. [Galille of folk þat weren taken to tribute, C.] of Zabulon and of Neptalim. And as men commez fra þis castell at xxx. myle es þe citee of Dan, þe whilk also es called Cesarea Philippi; and it standez at þe fote of þe mount Liban, whare þe flum Iordan begynnez. And þare also begynnez þe land of beheste and lastez vnto Bersabee in lenth for to ga fra þe north toward þe south, and it es nere ixxx myle. And on brede it lastes fra Iericho to Iaffe, and þat es fourty myle of þe mylez of Lumbardy, or of oure cuntree, for þai er bath ane. Bot I speke noȝt of leeges of Fraunce, Gascoyne, Prouince, or Almayne, 4. [myles of Gascoyne, ne of the prouynce of Almayne, C.] whare þai hafe grete myles.

And ȝe schall vnderstand þat þe Haly Land es in Surry. For Surry lastez fra þe desertes of Araby vnto Cicil, þat es to say Ermony þe mare, for to ga fra þe south to þe north; and fra þe este syde to þe west syde it lastez fra þe grete desertes of Araby vnto þe west see. Bot in þis rewme of Surry er many rewmes contende, þat es to say Iudee, Palestine, Galile, Sem Cecil and many oþer cuntreez. And in þat cuntree and many oþer aboute it þer es swilk a custom þat, when twa rewmes er at were and owþer party ensegez citee, toune or castell, [folio 48b] þan, in steed of messangers to ga betwene þe partys, þai ordayne dowfes for to bere lettres, and bindez þam aboute þe nekkes of þe dowfes, and þan þai late þam flie furth; and þai, thurgh comoun custom and vsage þat þai er wont vnto, fliez to þe toþer party, and when þe letters er tane fra þaire neckes þai flie agayne whare þai ware nurischt.

And ȝe schall vnderstand þat amanges þe Sarezenes in diuerse placez þer dwellez many Cristen men vnder tribute, þe whilk vsez diuerse lawez and custommes after þe constitucioun and þe ordinaunce of þe rewmes whare þai dwell. Neuerþeles all er þai baptized and trowez in Godd, Fader and Sonne and Haly Gaste. Bot ȝit þai faile in sum articles of oure beleue. Þare er sum Cristen men þat er called Iacobynes, þe whilk sayn Iame þePage  59 apostel conuerted, and sayn Iohn þe evaungelist baptized þam. And þai say and affermez þat confessioun suld be made all anely to Godd and noȝt to man. For þai say Godd bad neuer þat a man schuld schryfe him till anoþer man, and þerfore Dauid saise in þe sawter, "Confitebor tibi, Domine, in toto corde meo", 1. [Ps. ix. 2.] þat es to say, "Lord, I sall schryfe me to þe in all my hert." And in anoþer place he saise þus, "Delictum meum tibi cognitum feci", 2. [Ps. xxxi. 5.] þat es to say "Lord, to þe I sall make aknawen my trespas." And also he saise þus, "Deus meus es tu, et confitebor tibi", 3. [Ps. cxvii. 28.] þat es to say, "Þou ert my Godd, and to þe I sall be schrifen." And ȝit he saise in anoþer place, "Quoniam cogitacio hominis confitebitur tibi", 4. [Ps. lxxv. 11.] þat es to say, "For thoght of man sall schryfe to þe." For þai say [folio 49] þat a man schuld all anely ask him forgifnes wham he trespast to. Bot Godd ordayned neuer, ne na prophete, as þai say, þat a man suld schew his synnes til any bot all anely to Godd. And þerfore þai alegge þe auctoritez of þe sawter þat I talde ȝow before. Þai say also þat saynt Austyne and sayne Gregore and oþer doctours affermez þe same. For saynt Austyne saise on þis wyse, "Qui scelera sua cogitat et conuersus fuerit, veniam sibi credat", þat es to say, "Wha so knawez his synnez and es turned, he may trowe to hafe forgifnes." And sayn Gregore sayse on þis maner, "Dominus potius mentem quam verba considerat", þat es to say, "Oure Lord takes mare hede to thoȝt þan to word." Saynt Hilari also saise, "Longorum temporum crimina in ictu oculi perient, si corde nata fuerit contempcio", 5. [compunccio, C.] þat es to say, "Synnez þat er done of lang tyme sall perisch in twynkelyng of ane egh, if despysing of þam be borne in a mannes hert." Swilk auctoritez þai alegge in þaire awen langage and noȝt in Latyne; and for þir auctoritez þai say þat men schall schryfe þam all anely to Godd and noȝt to man. And þerfore, when þai will schryfe þam, þai make a fyre besyde þam and castez þerin encense, and, when þe reke gase vp, þai say, "I schryfe me to Godd and askez forgifnes of my synne." And, noȝt forþi in alde tyme þis was þe maner of schryfing, bot sayn Petre, and oþer apostels þat come seyne, thurgh gude skille has ordaynd þat men sall schryue þam to prestez, þat er men as þai er. For þai considred þat men may giffe na gude medecyne to a [folio 49b] man þat es seke bot if þai knawe þe kynde of þe sekeness; and riȝt so a man may gyffe no couenable penaunce bot if he knawe þe qualitee and þe quantitee of þe synne. For a maner of synne es mare greuous þan anoþer, and in sum place mare þan in sum oþer, and in sum tyme mare þan in sum oþer; and þerfore it es nedefull þat a man knawe þe synne with þe circumstauncez þat sall enioyne couenable penaunce.

Oþer Cristen men þer er þat er called Surrianez. Þai hald a lawe in meen betwene vs and þe Grekez. And þai late þaire berdes grow as þe Grekez dus, and makes þe sacrement of þe awter of soure bred as þe Grekez duse, and vsez þe lettres of Grewe, 6. [And in here langage þei vsen lettres of Sarazines; but after the misterie of holy chirche thei vsen lettres of Grece, C.] and schryfez þam as þe Iacobynes duse. Also þer er oþer þat er calledPage  60 Georgienes, whilk sayn George conuerted; and him þai honoure and wirschepes before all oþer halowes. And all þai hafe þaire crownes schauen, þe clerkes rownde and þe lawed men foure cornerd. And þai hald þe lawe of Grekez. Ȝit es þare anoþer of folk, þe whilk er called Cristen men of gyrdils, for þai er gyrdid as frere menoures er. Sum also er called Nestorianes, sum Arrianes, sum Nubienes, sum Gregorienes, 1. [summe of Grees, C.] sum Indynes, whilk er of Prestre Iohn land. All er þai called Cristned men; and many of þe articles of oure beleue þai hald and vsez, bot neuerþeles in many poyntes þai vary fra vs and fra oure faith. All þaire variaunce ware to mykil to tell.