|It is foolishness to jeer at others
and talk to people about things
about which they are bothered and ashamed.
|4||One could of this matter
Show proof in many cases.
He acts badly to joke about the truth,
Because people say, and it’s true,
|8||He will be paid in kind.
Whom one jeers or insults
When he sees the chance, let him avenge himself.
And such one who mocks someone else
|12||It will come back to him.
As an exemplum, I will tell you,
it’s true, I would never lie,
And this is how someone told me for true.
|16||There was a tournament
Between Perronne and Aties,
And knights from those places
Set up camp for the tourney.
|20||Once they were in amorous conversation
With dames and demoiselles
Who were elegant and beautiful.
They undertook many delights,
|24||That they made a queen
To play the game “the king who doesn’t lie.”
She knew very well
How to undertake the lead
|28||And to ask questions.
She spoke well and was well built
In a way that was beautiful and rich.
Many questions she was able to ask
|32||And her will commanded;
until she came to a knight
rather courteous and well-spoken
Who had loved her and would
|26||Have taken her, and it pleased her.
He doesn’t seem at all well-tailored
To do that which pleases a lover
When you take her naked in your arms
|40||Because he doesn’t have a thick beard.
He had a little beard, and he is timid
With regards to women in many instances.
“Sire,” says the queen,
|44||“Tell me about your situation,
If you have ever had a child.”
“Lady,” he says, “I cannot boast that.
I’ve never had any, as far as I know.”
|48||“Sire, I don’t doubt it,
And I believe that I’m not alone,
because it appears from the straw
that the corn is not good.”
|52||After there was no break;
So she quickly went to another
to talk about another matter.
Many people listened to her
|56||Smiling and noting her words.
The knight who heard this
was not happy with these words.
He was speechless and said nothing,
|60||And when the game had lasted quite a while,
Until has asked all around
the queen, each on their own
asked her, as was the custom.
|64||Her hears was subtle and wise,
She answered each one wisely,
her thoughts without delay.
When the turn came for the knight,
|68||He remembered the taunt.
He desired to avenge himself
And said to her without delay,
“Lady, respond without deception:
|72||Do you have any hair on your pubis?”
“By faith,” says the demoiselle,
“There’s a nice question
And gets right to the point.
|76||Know that there is none.”
He says to her with satisfaction,
“I believe you, because in a path
That is beaten, one finds no grass.”
|80||Those who heard the proverb
Began to laugh
for the bizarre question
for she was embarrassed and ashamed,
|84||She who earlier was eager
to ask things and say
what would make the others laugh.
Now her heart was lost
|88||That all her enjoyment was lost,
And this was her failed joy,
because before she was happy and delighted
And very full of mirth.
|92||Not know courteously
the knight how to avenge her.
He did not want to insult her,
But he was fully her match
|96||And her thoughts he showed,
As she had done to his,
Because there is not a woman on earth
Who can ever love a man,
|100||if she hears him defamed
To be a bad workman in bed
In matters of amorous delight.
And on this point he was jeered.
|104||You well know the castrated cock
Is unwelcome to the hens.
Also a man who is held to be
a bad worker is shunned
|108||Among women, well you know it,
– these are nuns or Beguines –
as the capons among the hens.
The knight knew it well
|112||That he had the reputation
And because of the jeering had a sad heart.
And thus he desired to avenge himself.
He knew that it may well be
|116||Concerning her manner, the way she was,
Or some suspicion
ran in the merchandise
that he wants to marry her,
|120||Thus he uncovered is heart
And if she had kept quiet
this matter would never have been
mentioned to her. You who hear
|124||This story, you can hear
That the true jokes aren’t worth anything.
One sees little good come out of them.
Happenstance is when good happens.
|128||Often one sees that bad comes.
I know little news of the good.
I made a new rhyme,
the story that I told.
|132||Make God keep those that heard it!
Amen, here is the end of the story.
May God give to all a good end.