MS NLI.10 27-26 Draft details

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(U84 12.1593-1620)

Ourº travellers reached the rustic hostelry and alighted from their |1steeds palfreys1|.

— Ho, varlet, cried he, who by his mien seemed the leader of the party. Saucy knave. To us.

So saying, he knocked loudly with his mailed fist upon the |1open1| lattice.

Mine host came forth at the summons, |1girt girding him1| with |1his1| tabard.

— Give you good den, my masters, said he with an obsequious bow.

— Bestir thyself, sirrah! said he who had knocked. Look to our steeds. And for ourselves give us of your best to eat and drink for ifaith we need it.

— Lackaday, good masters, said the host, my poor house is a bare larder. I knowº what to offer your lordships.

— How now, fellow? cried the second of the party|1, a man of olive countenance1|. So serve you the king's messengers, master Taptun!

An instantaneous change appeared on the landlord's visage.

Cry you mercy, gentlemen, he said, humbly. An you be the
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king'sº messengers (God shield His Majesty) you shall have my last not want for aught. The king's friends (God bless his Majesty) shall not go afasting in my house, I warrant me.

— Then, about! cried the traveller, who had not spoken|1, a |aloud lustya| trencherman by his unreade aspect1|. |1What hast Hast aught1| to give us?

Mine host bowed again and sai answered:

— What say you|1, good masters,1| to a cold pigeon pasty, a boar's head with pistachios and a flagon of old Rhenish.
|1Gadzooks, |acried exclaimeda| the last speaker. That likes me well.1|

— Aha! said cried he of the olive countenance. Excellent well. That is what you A poor house, and a bare larder, quotha. 'Tis a merry rogue