The Devonshire Manuscript/thy promese was to loue me best

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The Devonshire Manuscript
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What deth ys worse then thys / I se the change ffrom that that was
The Devonshire Manuscript facsimile 40r

 f. [40r] 

1    thy [s]promese was to loue me best
2    and that thy hart with{w+t+} myn shold rest
3    and nat to brek thys thy behest
4    thy promese ^1was thy promese was

5    thy promese was nat to aquyt
6    my ffathffulnes with{w+t+} sech destyt
7    but recompenset yf thow myght
8    thy promese was thy promese was

9    thy promese was I tel the pleyn
10    my ffayth shold nat be spent in wene
11    but to hawe mor shold be my gayne
12    thy promese was thy promese was

13    thy promese was to hawe obsarwed
14    my ffayth lyke as yt hath deserwed
15    and nat casles thys to asward have sweared 
16    thy promese was thy promese was

17    thy promese was I dar a woe
18    but yt ys changyt I wot well how2
19    tho then wer then and now ys now
20    thy promese was thy promese was

21    but sens to change tho doos delyt
22    and that thy ffatyh hath tayn hes fflythe
23    as thow desarwest I shall the quyt
24    I promese the I promese the


Notes & Glosses edit

     1. Caret is downwards.
     2. Consider early modern pronunciation in the rhyme of "woe" and "now."

Commentary edit

Attributed to Sir Thomas Wyatt,[1] this poem was entered by Margaret Douglas. She uses ruled lines, few capital letters, and smudges the page, which might indicate that she is left-handed. The page shows evidence of careful copying, with many insertions and deletions. Although the sentiment of this poem is difficult to relate to the known biographical details of the Douglas’s life, this song could possibly have been copied for entertainment purposes.

Works Cited edit