Of the Thyes of this Moral Ymage

Capitulo xxxv

`Yet must we speken of the thyes of this ymage, whiche ben made for to bere all the membres whiche that ben aboue, and for to leden redyly the lymmes byneth. By them is al the body dressid and moued fro place to place, and myghtely susteyned, ryght as vppon pylers of suffysaunt strengthe, so that the body falle nought ne fayle, but strongly be gouerned euen vpryght to honoure and esement of the forsaid body.

`These thyes mowe wel be cleped other offycers as iustyces of the countreesa. Somme for pees, some for other specialte, as eschetours and all other prouostes and baylyfs, whiche that owen to see the gouernaunce of the countre, and by the shyrreues ordynaunce done theyr deuoyre, eueriche in his offyce.

`And also in special to [83v] awayten the kynges profite, for yf ony synguler auauntageb shold be geten that to no persone belongeth in properte, good skyle hit is he haue it, that al hath to gouerne.

`Fyrst and formest to these offycers after reson bylongeth with the drede of God to saue theyr lordes worshipe, and mayntene theyr right, in alle that they can. And in that other side, they shalle trewely demene the poure peple vnder them soo, that they be nought mysboden ne ouersore oppressyd by them, ne by none other. Ne that they soo besyly doo theyr lordes profyte or plesaunce, so that the peple be wrongfully disesid, but that they be to theyr lordes iust and trewe pylers, & also to the peple very frendely helpers, protectours, & defendours, soo that what euer they haue for to doo for them, that they goodly & easyly trete them and demene them, namely tho, that wylfully obeyen to the lawe. And other, that wyllen be besy for to inquyeten and letten the peple by theyr malyce oute of reste & pees, sharpely they shalle punysshe them, soo that they haue cause to cesse and hold them self in pees for alle tymes after.

`Ne hit belongeth nought to suche offycers for the kynges profyte to meue newe brykes, but where that he fyndeth the countrec in pees, he oweth for to suffre it and norisshe it therynne. Vpon theues and morderers, robbers and reuours, fyghters and debatours, mysprowde men and vicious, they shalle be fyers in iugement, and spare them nought at all, for preyer ne for mede, but putte them to suche peynes and punysshement as the lawe asketh.

`And yf that these thyes gouerne the body, noo doute it shalle be kepte in hele and prosperite long tyme ynowe.