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The Faerie Queene, Book I, Canto 6
by [?]


Eternal providence exceeding thought, 55
Where none appeares can make herselfe a way:
A wondrous way it for this Lady wrought,
From Lyons clawes to pluck the griped pray.
Her shrill outcryes and shriekes so loud did bray,
That all the woodes and forestes did resownd; 60
A troupe of Faunes and Satyres[*] far away
Within the wood were dauncing in a rownd,
Whiles old Sylvanus[*] slept in shady arber sownd:


Who when they heard that pitteous strained voice,
In haste forsooke their rurall meriment, 65
And ran towards the far rebownded noyce,
To weet, what wight so loudly did lament.
Unto the place they come incontinent:
Whom when the raging Sarazin espide,
A rude, mishapen, monstrous rablement, 70
Whose like he never saw, he durst not bide,
But got his ready steed, and fast away gan ride.


The wyld woodgods arrived in the place,
There find the virgin dolefull desolate,
With ruffled rayments, and faire blubbred face, 75
As her outrageous foe had left her late;
And trembling yet through feare of former hate:
All stand amazed at so uncouth sight,
And gin to pittie her unhappie state;
All stand astonied at her beautie bright, 80
In their rude eyes unworthy of so wofull plight.


She more amaz’d, in double dread doth dwell;
And every tender part for feare doth shake:
As when a greedie Wolfe, through hunger fell,
A seely Lambe farre from the flocke does take, 85
Of whom he meanes his bloudie feast to make,
A Lyon spyes fast running towards him,
The innocent pray in hast he does forsake,
Which quit from death yet quakes in every lim
With chaunge of feare,[*] to see the Lyon looke so grim. 90


Such fearefull fit assaid her trembling hart,
Ne word to speake, ne joynt to move she had:
The salvage nation feele her secret smart,
And read her sorrow in her count’nance sad;
Their frowning forheads with rough hornes yclad, 95
And rustick horror[*] all a side doe lay;
And gently grenning, show a semblance glad
To comfort her, and feare to put away,
Their backward bent knees[*] teach her humbly to obay.


The doubtfull Damzell dare not yet commit 100
Her single person to their barbarous truth;[*]
But still twixt feare and hope amazd does sit,
Late learnd[*] what harme to hasty trust ensu’th:
They in compassion of her tender youth,
And wonder of her beautie soveraine, 105
Are wonne with pitty and unwonted ruth,
And all prostrate upon the lowly plaine,
Do kisse her feete, and fawne on her with count’nance faine.


Their harts she ghesseth by their humble guise,
And yieldes her to extremitie of time; 110
So from the ground she fearlesse doth arise,
And walketh forth without suspect of crime:[*]
They all as glad, as birdes of joyous Prime,
Thence lead her forth, about her dauncing round,
Shouting, and singing all a shepheards ryme, 115
And with greene braunches strowing all the ground,
Do worship her, as Queene, with olive[*] girlond cround.