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Title: A Ioyfull medytacyon to all Englonde of the coronacyon of our moost naturall souerayne lorde kynge Henry the eyght

Author: Stephen Hawes

Release date: August 7, 2007 [eBook #22261]
Most recently updated: November 30, 2023

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Louise Hope, David Starner and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at

Produced by Louise Hope, David Starner and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at

Spelling and punctuation are unchanged; possible errors are noted with mouse-hover popups. The word shown as ye was printed with the e directly above the y: yͤ. Not all browsers can display this form correctly.

Folio numbers have been added by the transcriber. Reconstructions are shown in smaller type. Missing and incomplete lines are explained at the end of the text.


coronation scene

The prologue

T (The)

He prudent problems / & the noble werkes

Of the gentyll poetes in olde antyquyte

Vnto this day hath made famous clerkes

For the poetes Wrote nothynge in vanyte

But grounded them on good moralyte

Encensynge out the fayre dulcet fume

Our langage rude to exyle and consume

The ryght eloquent poete and monke of bery

Made many fayre bookes / as it is probable

From ydle derkenes / to lyght our emyspery

Whose vertuous pastyme / was moche cõmendable

Presentynge his bookes / gretely prouffytable


To your worthy predecessour the .v. kynge Henry

whiche regystred is in the courte of memory

Amyddes the medowe of flora the quene

Of the goddes elycon / is the sprynge or well

And by it groweth / a fayre laurell grene

Of whiche the poetes do ofte wryte and tell

Besyde this olyue / I dyde neuer dwell

To tast the water whiche is aromatyke

For to cause me wryte with lusty rethoryke

Wherefore good souerayne / I beseche your hyghnes

To pardon me whiche do rudely endyte

As in this arte hauynge small intres

But for to lerne is all myn appetyte

In folowynge the monke whiche dyde nobly wryte

Besechynge your hyghnes and grace debonayre

For to accepte this rude and lytell quayre

¶ Explicit prologus.


God alone in heuen werynge crowne

In whose inspecte is euery regall se

Both to enhaũce & for to cast adowne

Suche is ye power of thỹ hygh magiste

Neyther hardynes treasour nor dygnyte

May withstande thy strength whiche is ĩ euery place

So grete and myghty is thy dyuyne grace

Two tytles in one thou dydest well vnyfye

Whan the rede rose toke the whyte in maryage

Reygnynge togyder ryght hygh and noblye

From whose vnyd tytyls and worthy lygnage

Descended is by ryght excellent courage

Kynge Henry the .viii. for to reygne doutles

Vnyuersall his fame honour and larges

Whiche hathe spousyd a fayre floure of vertue

Descended of kynges dame katheryn of Spayne



By grace and prudens the peace to attayne

Wherfore Englonde thou nedes not complayne

Syth thou hast crowned openly in syght

This kynge and quene by good true loue and ryght

What sholde I shewe by perambulacyon

All this grete tryumphe of whiche reporte

Is made aboute nowe in euery nacyon

Vnto all this realme to be Ioy and comforte

Wherfore you lordes I humby you exhorte

Spyrytuall and temporall with the comyns vnyfyde

To gyue god the prayse which dothe grace prouyde

Englonde be gladde / the dewe of grace is spred

The dewe of Ioy / the dewe holsome and soote

Dystylled is nowe from the rose so red

And of the whyte so spryngynge from the roote

After our trouble to be refute and boote

This ryall tree was planted as I knowe

By god aboue the rancour to downe throwe

Who is the floure that dothe this grace dystyll

But onely Henry the viii.kynge of his name

With golden droppes all Englonde to fulfyll

To shewe his larges his honour and his fame

His dedes therto exemplefye the fame

Wherefore nowe Englonde with hole deuocyon

For this yonge kynge make dayly orayson

Our late souerayne his fader excellent

I knowe ryght well some holde oppynyon

That to auaryce he had entendement

Gadrynge grete rychesse of this his regyon

But they lytell knowe by theyr small reason

For what hye entente he gadered doutles

Vnto his grace suche innumerable ryches

For I thynke well and god had sente hym lyfe


As they haue meruaylled moche of this gadrynge

So it to them sholde haue ben affyrmatyfe

To haue had grete wonder of his spendynge

It may fortune he thought to haue mouynge

Of mortall warre our fayth to stablysshe

Agaynst the turkes theyr power to mynysshe

But syth that dethe by his course naturall

Hathe hym arested / and wolde not delay

Lyke wyse as he was so be we mortall

How / where / or whan I cam nothynge say

Therfore to god aboue let vs all pray

For to graunt hym mercy whiche was our kynge

Bryngynge his soule to Ioy euerlastinge

A fayre Englonde mystruste the ryght nought

Regarde ryght well / his sonnes Iustyce

Se how that they whyche inuencyons sought

Delytynge them in the synne of auaryce

To oppresse the comyns by grete preiudyce

Dothe he not punysshe them accordynge to lawe

Suche newe promocyons to dampne and withdrawe


Fy on the saturne with thy mysty fume

Replete with fraude treason and wyckednes

To shewe thy beames thou darest not presume

So cursed thou arte withouten stablenes

Deuoyde of grace fulfylled with doblenes

Thy power to Englonde was neuer amyable

But alwayes euyll vntrue and varyable


Now gentyll Iupyter the lodesterre of lyghte

Thy stedfast beames so fayre and so clere

Cast now abrede that we may haue a syght

To gladde vs all whan that they do appere

Sendynge downe trouthe from thy fulgent spere

For to make our hertes mekely to enclyne


To serue our souerayue whiche doth nowe domyne


O myghty Mars o god of the warre

O flambynge honour of euery hardy herte

Sende downe thy power truely from so ferre

Us to encourage that we do not sterte

But by hardynes that we may subuerte

Our soueraynes enemyes to hym contraryous

By bataylles fyrse ryghtfull and rygorous


And thou fayre bright / and aureate phebus

Encreace now lyght with loue and honoure

Amonge the lordes so gay and gloryus

With thy radyant beames so hye of fauoure

Deuoydynge all trechery debate and rancoure

Any yllumyne the mynde with lyberalyte

Of our good souerayne with welth and vnyte


And lady Venus with thy sone Cupyde

Of euery lorde do nowe the herte enspyre

With feruent loue that he do not slyde

And of the comyns set the hertes on fyre

To loue our souerayne with theyr hole desyre

Folowynge his grace with dulcet armonye

To the ryghtfull waye withouten Ieoperdye


Also thou Mercury the god of eloquence

The gentyll sterre of grace and vertue

Thy beames of ryght peace and conscyence

On our kynges counsayll downe send and renue

The trouthe of Iustyce / that they may extue

For to do wronge by the synne of couetyce

That here before hathe done grete preiudyce


An thou watery dyane of the se the goddes

With thy broder eolus the god of the wynde

Encourage the hertes by in warde hardynes

Of *******


And enmyes ryse that they be not behynde

Them for to chace and the se to scoure

By grace and fortune in many a stormy stoure

O god aboue / trononysed in heuen

In whose wyll resteth euery thynge alone

The skye / the erthe / with all the planettes seuen

Without whose grace / comforte haue we none

As thou arte thre enclusyd in one

So saue our souerayne / from all maner wo

And this his realme from mortall warre also

Holy chirche reioyce / with all your lybertees

Withouten dõmage / the kynge wyll ye encreace

And be your shelde from all aduersytees

No wronge shall be but he wyll it soone seace

Knyttynge the knotte of fayth loue and peace

Bytwene you and hym without dysturbaunce

So for to endure by longe contynuaunce

Ryght myghty prynce our good souerayne lorde

To god enclynynge be hardy and gladde

Of you and your realme he wyll se concorde

Though other nacyons be therfore full sadde

Agaynst you murmurynge with theyr werkes badde

Yet drede ye nothynge for god with his myght

Wyll be alwaye redy to defende the ryght

Ryght noble / wyse / and excellent pryncesse

Ryght benygne lady / lyberall and vertuous

Dyscended lynyally of the lyne of noblenesse

Fayre quene katheryne so swete adn precyous

To our souerayne espoused with Ioy solacyous

Almyghty god gyue grace to myltyplye

From you your stoures to reyne ryght ryally

And lady Mary prynces ryght beauteous

Indued with honour / vertue / and prudence


Ryght meke / goodly / gentyll and gracyous

Syster ryght dere vnto the excellence

Of our good souerayne / surmountynge in sapyence

Ryght fayre younge lady / the grete lorde aboue

He graunte you grace / hygh fame / fortune / and loue

And all you lordes and laydes honourable

And you noble knyghtes so hauntynge chyualry

Unto our souerayne be meke and tendable

Whiche wyll rewarde you well and nobly

As to shewe his largesse vnyuersally

Encouragynge your hertes that courage chyualrous

In tyme of batayll for to be vyctoryous

And all ye offycers of euery degree

Beware extorcyon, for and it be knowen

No doute it is but ye shall punysshed be

Take hede of them / the whiche be ouerthrowen

Remembre well how fortune hathe blowen

The promoters downe / and castynge them full lowe

In folowynge them ye shall fall as I trowe

Englonde be true and loue well eche other

Obey your souerayne / and god omnypotent

Whiche is aboue / of all the worlde the rother

Wyll sende you welth / from whome all good is sente

He gyue vs grace to kepe his cõmaundement

And saue our souerayne / with his semely quene

With all theyr bloode / without trouble and tene

¶ Amen.

¶ Excusacio auctoris

¶ Go lytell treatyse submyt the humbly

To our souerayne lorde / to be in his presence

Besechynge his grace to accepte the mekely

And to pardon thy rudenes and neclygence



To compyle those maters whiche sholde pleasure be

Unto his hyghnes and regall maieste

Now ye fayre laydes, wyse and vertuous

I ryght humbly praye you for to condyscende

To accepte my makynge nothynge facundious

I wolde that fortune wolde connynge extende

That myn endytynge I myght than amende

To dyrecte my maters after your pleasaunce

Whiche yet replete am with all ygnoraunce


¶ Thus endeth this Ioyfull medytacyon made & compyled by Stephen hawes somtyme grome of ye chambre of our late souerayne lorde kynge Henry ye seuenth

¶ Enprynted at London in ye fletestrete at ye sygne of the sonne by wynkyn de worde.

W.C. initials, Wynkyn de Worde symbol

About the Text

Title Page text:

¶ A Ioyfull medytacyon to all Englonde
of the coronacyon of our moost naturall
souerayne lorde kynge Henry the eyght.

Borders: In the surviving text, the decorative border appears along the top and sides of the first page, and around all sides of the last page. The first page probably had a lower border as well. The continuous left border was added by the transcriber.

Page A2verso
How / where / or whan I cam nothynge say
The word “cam” could be read as “cain” with missing dot, but an unambiguous letter “m” with the same defect appears several other times on this page.

text reconstruction

Damaged Lines: The original text was published as an eight-page pamphlet. In the surviving copy, used as the basis for facsimile reprints, the bottoms of all pages have been cropped. A total of three lines—as deduced from the verse structure—are entirely missing, and a further three have been reconstructed from their surviving portions. Folio numbers would have appeared at the very bottom of the page.

Page A1verso
(A further line is entirely missing)

text reconstruction

Page A2

text reconstruction

Page A3verso

text reconstruction

Page A3

text reconstruction

The single word “Of” seems secure. The words “our kynges”, copied from further up the same page, are included because they happen to fit. They should not be taken as a serious attempt at reconstruction.