A recently discovered Chaucer Manuscript intended it seems for his  Canterbury Tales

[I found it crumpled under his bed.   I regard it as authentic but then I am no scholar so let each judge it as they may]


A fine and worthy prelate
Of Engelond there was withal
Attentive was he to his several priestly duties       
And as well to his many secular affairs also

This clerical man, yeclept Roger, 
Was nat extraordinary of stature nor of bearing
And his garb was certeyn somdeel shabby blak

He laboreth afteral in the vineyards 
Of his Lord’s chruche         
Oft in the soil to its murky depths  
So what might ye expect after al                
Certeyn his frock was noot as pure 
As was his own veray soul forsooth

Although somdeel learned a man he was
He dorste not show it over free 
As it was only of lowly order
And might be kenned by those of loftier degree

Full many a Sunday found him deep in prayer Before his Holy Lady Lord            
But of a Monday and throughout the week also 
Was he knelt before the several ladies of his ward

He saw to the sacred needs of his flock        
And as well did he attend their worldly wants
Soothly he knew how their fleshly longings to amend

Thus did our prelate his beste 
Ay the wenches and ladies to sate                   
Lest they defiled be to some unchristian fate
It was his duty playne and never would he shirk it

Specially his attention waxed strong
For his several nuns anon
Tho they married to Christ Jesus sikerly were
Yet wayleth and wepeth they
That their solemn Lord faileth them al pryvely,
In His husbondly duties pleyne

Thus our parfit and compassionate priest Endeavorth to aid al ladies in need 
And for his Lord to fill in best he kan
And truth to say he filleth them all full well indeed

But epecially his eye fell on a particular nun pardee
That he chese to warm his bed at night alway
So glad she was of his especial devotions
That she satisfieth him full oft too as well

So in his parish al were saf in heaven’s perfit delit
That no oon mowe complain nor deem him nat    aright
Al that is save some sour husbonds few
But what could they seye as they faileth
In that ilke fashion as did their Lord Christus Jesu 

           Alas and Amen of that

So as al koude ken, many a jolly tale had this wight
On their journey to Canterbury
For everichon's delit

Thus the Priest’s Nun’s Tail contented was evermore.


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