SATAN Now Beliard and Beelzebub, ye dearworthy devils of hell, And wisest of council among all the rout, Hark now what I say, a tale I shall you tell That troubleth sore my stomach. Thereof I have great doubt. BELIAL Sir Sathanas, our sovereign sire, with thee will we dwell 5 All ready at thy bidding; to thee do we lout. If thou have any need of our wise counsel, Tell us now thy question all out and out. Say all thy doubt so keen. BEELZEBUB Yea, sir, tell us thy doubt by and by 10 And we shall tell you so surely That thou shalt know verily What thy doubt doth mean. SATAN The doubt that I have it is of Christ, iwis. Born he was in Bethlehem, as it is said. 15 And many a man believes that God's son he is, Born of a woman and she a clean maid. And all that ever he preaches it is of heaven's bliss. He will loose our law, I am right sore afraid. Fain would I know who his father is 20 For of this great doubt I am sore dismayed Indeed. If that he is God's child And born of a maid mild, Then be we right sore beguiled 25 And short shall be our speed. Therefore, sirs, somewhat that ye show In this great doubt what is best to do If he be God's son he will breed a shrew And work us much wrath, both wretch and woe. 30 Sorrow and care he will soon strew, And all our good days then should soon go And all our lore and all our law he will down hew And then be we all lost, if that be so. He will do us all tene. 35 He will be lord over heaven and hell And fetch away all our cattle. Therefore, show now some good counsel. What comfort may best be. BELIAL The best wit that I can say 40 Him to tempt, forsooth it is, With subtle wiles, if that thou may. Assay to make him do amiss. If that he sin, this is no nay, He may not be the king of bliss. 45 Him to tempt, go walk in thy way. For best counsel I believe be this Go forth now and assay. BEELZEBUB The best wit, I hold it be Him to tempt in sins three 50 In which mankind In his frailty Doth fall soonest, alway. SATAN So after your wit, now will I work. I will no longer here abide. 55 Be he never so wise a clerk, I shall oppose him Within a tide. BEELZEBUB Now lovely Lucifer, in hell so stark King, and lord of sin and pride 60 With some mist his wits make dark. He send thee grace to be thy guide And ever more be thy speed. BELIAL All the devils that be in hell Should pray to Mahound as I thee tell. 65 That thou mayst speed this journey well And comfort thee in this deed. JESUS Forty days and forty nights Now have I fasted for man's sake. A more great hunger had never no wight 70 Than I myself begin to take. For hunger, in pain strong am I put And bread have I none my hunger to slake, A little loaf relieve my hunger might, But morsel have I none, my comfort to make. 75 This suffer I man for thee, For thy gluttony and eating wrong I suffer, for thee, this hunger strong. I am afraid it will be long Ere thou do this for me. 80 SATAN The son of God, if that thou be, By thy great might, of thy Godhead, Turn these flints, anon, let's see, From hard stones to tender bread. More better it is, as I tell thee 85 Wisely to work after what I have said And show thy might of great majesty Than through great hunger for to be dead. These stones now bread thou make, God's son if that thou be. 90 Make these stones bread, let's see! Then mayest thou eat right good plenty Thy hunger for to slake. JESUS Not only by bread, man's life yet stood, But in the word of God as I thee say. 95 To man's soul is never meat so good As is the word of God that preached is always. Bread material doth nourish the blood, But to man's soul this is no nay. Never more may be a better food 100 Than the word of God that lasteth aye. To hear God's word, therefore, man love Thy body doth love material bread. Without the word of God, thy soul is but dead To love preaching, therefore, I have said 105 If thou wilt dwell in bliss above. SATAN For no great hunger that I can see In gluttony thou wilt not sin. Now to the temple come forth with me And there shall I show a pretty gin. 110 Up to this pinnacle now go we. I shall thee set on the highest pin. There I shall prove what that thou be Ere that we two part atwin. I shall know what thou have. 115
Here God ascends the pinnacle of the temple while the devil says what follows,
When thou art set upon the pinnacle Thou shalt there play a quaint spectacle Or else show a great miracle Thyself from hurt thou save.
Here Satan places Jesus on the pinnacle saying,
Now, if thou be God's son of might, 120 Right down to earth anon thou fall And save thyself, in every plight From harm and hurt and scrapes all. For it is written, with angels bright That are in heaven, thy father's hall, 125 Thee to keep both day and night Shall be full ready, as thy thrall. Hurt that thou none have That thou stumble not against the stone And hurt thy foot as thou dost go. 130 Angels be ready all everyone In ways thee to save. JESUS It is written in holy book, Thy lord God thou shalt not tempt. All things must obey to God's look. 135 Out of his might is none exempt. Out of thy cursedness and cruel crook, By God's grace, man shall be redeemed, When thou to hell, thy burning brook, To endless pain shall ever be damned, 140 Therein always to abide. Thy lord God thou tempt no more. It is not fitting to thy lore. I bid thee cease anon therefore And tempt God in no tide. 145 SATAN Neither in gluttony nor in vainglory, it doth right not avail. Christ for to tempt, it profitteth me right nought. I must now begin to have a new travail, In covetise to tempt him, it cometh now in my thought. For if I went thus away and shrank as a snail, 150 Lost were the labour, all that I have wrought. Therefore, in covetise, our sire I shall assail And assay into that sin if he may be brought. Anon, forth right. Sir, yet once I pray to thee 155 To this high hill come forth with me. I shall thee show many a city And many a worthy sight.
Then Jesus crosses with the devil up on the mountain and the devil says,
In to the north, look forth, even plain The tower of Babylon there mayst thou see. 160 The city of Jerusalem standeth there again And even fast thereby stands Galilee, Nazareth, Navern and the kingdom of Spain. Zebulon and Naphtali, that is a rich country, Both Zebee and Salmana thou mayest see certain. 165 Italy and Artage that worthy realms be. Both Genoa and Jewry. Rome doth stand before the right, The temple of Solomon as silver bright, And her mayst thou see openly with sight 170 Both France and Normandy. Turn thee now on this side and see here Lombardy, Of spicery there grows many an hundred bales. Archas and Aragon and great Almony, Paris and Portugal and the towns of Gaul. 175 Pontis and Popering and also Picardy, Ireland, Scotland and the land of Wales. Great piles and castles thou mayest see with eye Yea, and all the wide world without more tales All belongs to me. 180 If thou wilt kneel down to the ground And worship me where I am found, All this world that is so round I shall it give to thee. JESUS Go back, thou foul Sathanas! 185 In holy scripture written it is, Thy lord God to worship in every place. As for his thrall and thou servant his. SATAN Out! out! harrow, Alas! alas! I wonder sore what is he, this. 190 I can not bring him to no trespass Nor is any sin to do amiss. He biddeth me go aback. What that he is, I cannot see, Whether God or man, what that he be 195 I cannot tell in no degree. For sorrow I let a crack.
Here Angels come singing Gloria tibi domine and ministering to him. He saying:
JESUS Now all mankind example take By these great works that thou didst see, How that the devil of hell so black 200 In sin was busy to tempt me. For all his masteries that he did make He is overcome and now doth flee. All this I suffer for man's sake To teach thee how thou shalt rule thee 205 When the devil doth thee assail. Loo thou consent never to sin For no sleights nor for any gin. And then the victory shalt thou win. The devil shall lose all his travail. 210 To suffer temptation it is great pain. If thou withstand it, thou winnest great meed Of God. The more grace thou hast, certain, If thou withstand the devil in his deed Though that the fiend tempt thee again, 215 Of his power take thou no dread. For God hath thee given both might and main Him for to withstand ever at need. Thou hast more might than he When the devil doth tempt thee, though. 220 Show thy might against the foe, When thy soul parts thee fro, In bliss then shall it be. Amen
Return to N-Town Pageant List.