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501-02 This kind of elaborate description of day and night was considered elegant.
Compare Chaucer's description in TC 2.904-09: Esperus (line 502), or Hesperus, is another name for Venus as the evening star, which appears in the western sky after sunset.
Compare Lydgate's envoy to The Complaint of the Black Knight (lines 675-81) and Chaucer's lengthy envoy to TC (5.1786-1869). I.e., God, having written or created all of our lives, could have read James' poem at any time through His foreknowledge. This phrase has caused some editorial difficulty, and seems to involve a scribal miscopying. 130) but notes that Wischmann agreed more nearly with Sk's second,"And what joy it gives to hear there (i.e., in his banishment) this worthy lord and clerk." Mc D follows L.
By repeating the first line of this poem (as does the Pearl-poet in both The Pearl and in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight), the poet frames his account with the largest of all settings, God's arching firmament. Most editors have read quhile as modern"while" interpreting the phrase to mean"by Fortune for awhile" or"after a time"; but in line 1323, the scribe spells"wheel," as in"Fortune's wheel" in the same way. 22 And thereto here this worthy lord and clerk."And thereto [in reference to his fall from Fortune] here [in this place in the poem, Boece], this worthy clerk set to work his rhetorically eloquent pen, his verses sweetly rendered, full of moral teaching." In this reading of the difficult lines 1-28 we follow most nearly NS, who argued for"here" as referring to"in this place in the poem." This reading differs considerably from Sk's, who read"here" as a verb,"hear," referring to line 14"But took up a book to read for a while" with all of stanza 3 being treated as an apostrophe. The reading we have adopted simplifies the syntax somewhat by making stanza 3 an integral part of the sentence, but such iterative syntax, imitating the syntax of Latin rhetorical writings, is nevertheless difficult to interpret: it does not work as well in an uninflected language like English.
A variant on Fair Welcome (Bel Acueil), from RR, whose blessing is necessary for any happy progress in love. James here compares his unworthy state to that of dock-weed in comparison with daisies, or other fine, delicate flowers one would grow in a garden. Lydgate, in his own extensive garden description in The Complaint of the Black Knight, lines 36-84, follows Chaucer in cataloguing the trees in the garden (lines 64-74), and includes a stream lined with "gravel gold, the water pure as glas" (line 78). The panther here is said to be like an emerald: the color of panthers in medieval bestiaries varies, and they are sometimes said to be multi-colored, as are also emeralds. 1175-76 Compare BD, lines 659-61; FS, lines 2110-14. In the Ptolemaic model of the universe, some planets, in relation to others, appear to move backward in their otherwise regular movement across the sky. Since Fortune tells James that an hour and more have passed since Prime, and that therefore almost half the time has gone so he should spend the rest of the day well, it seems that James is referring to the three-hour period of prime, an hour and more after which would bring the time to past a.m., nearing midday. NS notes the verbal parallel of unsekir warldis appetites with Chaucer's TC 5.1581:"thire wrecched worldes appetites" (p.
2.m8 (compare Troilus' reference to God's"bond" of love in TC 3.1744-71). An envoy is an addition to the end of a poem (or prose work) by which the author"sends on" or directs the poem to its destination.
In the manner of Chaucer's envoy to TC, it offers the author an opportunity to praise the patron of the work and to confess humbly his own unworthiness to write a poem addressed to such a person.
These spheres were nested within a larger sphere, that of the fixed stars (planets were thus thought to be "wandering stars"). Venus was a morning star near the boundary between Aquarius and Capricornus. Tyt's emendation, followed by Mor, Sk, Mac, NS, and Mc D.
Heading This heading, attributing authorship to James, was added by a later hand to blank space on folio 191v. The line is repeated at the end ("Hich in the hevynnis figure circulere," line 1372) to complete the poem's frame, thus, through its allusion to the epilogue to TC (viewed from the eighth sphere and with its dedication to Gower), setting up the poem's tribute to Chaucer and Gower in the final stanza. During much of the Middle Ages, the universe was envisioned as a series of crystalline spheres with the earth at the center, each sphere with a planet embedded in its surface, the innermost being our moon.
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523-32 Compare the ascent of the narrator in the claws of a huge eagle in Chaucer's HF (lines 541-53): 526 spere to spere. Sk, followed by NS, reads new as an adverb and emends to newe.