Page 255




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to have gone from here to the sky where the stars are.
IF the first man whom God created, that was Adam,
had ever gone there first, when God first
made and created him, and if he went twenty miles a day,
he would not still not have arrived, and he would still have
seven hundred and thirteen years to go, from the time
when Adam the first man was first made, to when this
book was made by its true author, which first appeared
in the Year of Grace 1246. Thus, he would have longer
to go that he had already gone to that point. Or if there
were a large stone, it would need a hundred years to fall
until it reached the earth,
even if it continued to fall during every hour of the day - of
which there are twenty four in a full day - or forty plus
thirteen and a half (53 1/2) miles [per day] (see note).
this matter was proven by the person who compiled
the present volume, as he came to this point in his work.
It is forty times as much as a horse could run if it
ran constantly without stopping. Now whoever wishes
to understand this can do so by thinking of how far a stone
can fall in an hour.

Notes and Questions

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Marie Richards

original ms. Folio 119r
Walters ms. Folio 124r
BL Royal MS 19 A IX fols 140r-v
Caxton, ed. Prior, p 172
Gossuin, ed. Prior, 194-195

Marie Richards

53 miles: Caxton has 43 (xliii) miles, and Prior notes, fn 2, that the OF ms. has lx et xiii, which is 73.

Marie Richards

Prior fn 3: the OF of the last sentence is missing in Caxton's text. Prior translates it as:
Now whoever wishes it can understand this by means of a stone which falls in an hour as fast as is natural to it. I cannot explain it any better.