Page 267




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understand what Paradise is, and what great joy those who
who are there have, to whom Our Lord has given it. The
best scholar in the whole world and the most subtle, the most
skillful speaker of anyone who has ever lived on earth or
ever may live at any time in the world, even if he had
a thousand languages and was able to speak every one of
them himself, and he had a thousand hearts within his
body that were the most subtle and were gifted with the greatest
memory (DMF) that one could have to choose from in the
whole world, in order to understand and investigate, and
if this was a thing that could be and could happen -- something that
could come together in the body of a man -- and if he (see note) might
think always of how he might best describe and explain
the state of Paradise in every language, and if it were
possible to state the intention of every heart, yet he
could not in any manner of the world say nor tell, in
prose nor in verse, the thousandth part of the great joy
that the most poor of those who are or will be in Paradise
will have. And let him who will not be there be ashamed.
For the one (see note) who will be in Paradise will not want always to be,

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Marie Richards

original ms. Folio 125r
Walters ms. Folio 130r
BL Royal MS 19 A IX fols 147v-148r
Caxton, ed. Prior, p 179
Gossuin, ed. Prior, 200

Marie Richards

line 14: the French changes from singular to plural for the rest of this long sentence.

Marie Richards

line 22: the French stays in plural here but reverts to singular on the next page. I've kept the whole thing in singular.