Iustyce Speketh to Vyrgynyte

Capitulo Quarto

'Now taketh heede and here how amonge the braunches of this grene tree there was a Lady hyd, that with ful huge dylygence kepte this appyl and the appyl tree, soo that none sholde it hurten ne harmen by vnskylful touchyng. This Lady was the floure and the fayre blosme of this tree, whos whytenes passyd the snowe. More swete smellynge was she than the beaume, more bryghter than outher sonne or mone. She was suster to aungels, and was cleped Vyrgynyte. To this noble lady Iustyce approchid and said to hyr thus:

"Dame Blaunche", quod she, "take hede what I shal seye the. It behoueth that thou here me of a lytel thynge, and thou doo hit gladly withouten ageyne seynge, ryght as I and Reson shall shewe the sewyngly.

"Adam somtyme ete of an appel, wherof he [60v] despoyled this drye tree, whiche dede was done al ageynste ryght. And wyte it wel, but yf it soo be, that also good an appel and better than the rather was be restored to this drye tree, Adam and alle his yssue ben dampned for euer, withouten hope of other helpe or socour. Now is it soo, that this appel tree that thou kepest besyly, was growen of this forseid Adam, ryght as his kyndely heyre, wherfore skyle it is, that by them and theyr besynesse this drye tree be restablysshed, and ageyne clothyd with this appell. Soo thenne hit behoueth that thou suffre me goodly for to take this appel, whiche thou hast to kepe, that I maye tatche hit to this drye tree, and fastne it with nayles, to that ende, that who so gothe by the weye, maye see the restitucion, soo that Adam be excused of that other, whiche he tooke withouten leue of the Souerayne Lord.