The Real History of the Rosicrucians, by Arthur Edward Waite, , at sacred-texts.com
The Fourth Day.
I still lay in my bed, and leisurely surveighed the nobleAutor longiuscule dormiens expergesit. images and figures about my chamber, during which, on a sudden, I heard the musick of coronets, as if already they had been in procession. My Page skipped out of the bed as if he had been at his wits’ end, and looked more like one dead than living. "The rest are already presented to the King," said he. I knew not what else to do but weep outright, and curse my own sloathfulness. I dressed myself, but my Page was ready long before me, and ran out of the chamber to see how affairs might yet stand. He soon returned with the joyful news that the time was not past, only I had over-slept my breakfast, they being unwilling to waken meJentaculo privatur. because of my age, but that now it was time for me to go with him to the Fountain, where most were assembled. With this consolation my spirit returned, wherefore I was soon ready with my habit, and went after the Page to the Fountain in the Garden, where I found that the Lyon, instead of his sword, had a pretty large tablet by him. Leonis Tabula. Having well viewed it, I found that it was taken out of the ancient monuments, and placed here for some especial honour. The inscription was worn with age, and, therefore,
[paragraph continues] I am minded to set it down here, as it is, and give every one leave to consider it.
POST TOT ILLATA
GENERI HUMANO DAMNA,
MEDICINA SALUBRIS FACTUS
Bibat ex me qui potest: lavet, qui vult: turbet, qui audet:
BIBITE FRATRES, ET VIVITE.
Scriptura facilis.This writing might well be read and understood, being easier than any of the rest. After we had washed ourselves out of the Fountain, and every man had taken a Potus.draught out of an intirely golden cup, we once more followed the Virgin into the hall, and there put on new Vestitus.apparel, all of cloth of gold gloriously set out with flowers. There was also given to everyone another Golden Fleece, set about with pretious stones, and various workmanship according to the utmost skill of each artificer. On it hung a weighty medal of gold, whereupon were figured the sun and moon in opposition, but on the other side stood this poesie:--"The light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be seven times Clinodiæ.brighter than at present." Our former jewels were laid in a little casket, and committed to one of the waiters. After this the Virgin led us out in our order, where the Musici.musitians waited ready at the door, all apparelled in red velvet with white guards. After which a door, that I
never before saw open, was unlocked; it opened on the Royal winding-stairs. There the Virgin led us, togetherAccessus ad regis aulam. with the musick, up three hundred sixty-five stairs; we saw nothing but what was of extream costly and artificial workmanship; the further we went, the more glorious still was the furniture, until at the top we came under a painted arch, where the sixty virgins attended us, all richlyLaboratorium aronatum 60 Virgines. apparelled. As soon as they had bowed to us, and we as well as we could had returned our reverence, the musitians were dispatched away down the winding-stairs, the Door being shut after them. Then a little Bell was told, when in came a beautiful Virgin, who brought every one a wreath of lawrel, but our Virgins had branches given them.Virg. Lucif. Meanwhile, a curtain was drawn up, where I saw the King and Queen as they sate in their majesty, and had not the yesterday queen warned me I should have equalled this unspeakable glory to Heaven; for besides that the roomRegis et Reginæ gloria. glittered of meer gold and pretious stones, the Queen's robes were so made that I was not able to behold them. In the meantime the Virgin stept in, and then each of the other virgins, taking one of us by the hand, with most profoundVirgo lucifera præsentat hospites Regi. reverence presented us to the King. Whereupon the Virgin began thus to speak:--"That to honour your most gratious, royal Majesties, these Lords have adventured hither with peril of body and life, your Majesties have reason to rejoyce, especially since the greatest part are qualified for inlarging your Majesties’ dominions, as you will find by a most gratious particular examination of each. Herewith I was desirous thus to have them in humility presented to your Majesties, with most humble suit to discharge me of this my commission, and to take information from each of them concerning my actions and omissions."
Hereupon she laid her branch on the ground. It would have been fitting for one of us to have spoken somewhat on this occasion, but, seeing we were all troubled with the Hospites nesciunt respondere. Atlas respondet.falling of the uvula, old Atlas stept forward and spoke on the King's behalf--"Their Royal Majesties most gratiously rejoyce at your arrival, and will that their grace be assured to all. With thy administration, gentle Virgin, they are most gratiously satisfied, and a Royal Reward shall be provided for thee; yet it is their intention that thou shalt this day also continue with them, inasmuch as they have no reason to mistrust thee."
Here the Virgin humbly took up the branch, and we for Descriptio labatorii.this first time were to step aside with her. This room was square on the front, five times broader than it was long, but towards the West it had a great arch like a porch, where Subscellia.stood in circle three glorious thrones, the middlemost being somewhat higher than the rest. In each throne sate two 1. Rex senex Conjux Juven.persons--in the first sate a very antient King with a gray beard, yet his consort was extraordinarily fair and young. 2. Rex and conjux senes.In the third throne sate a black King of middle age, and by him a dainty old matron, not crowned, but covered with a vail. But in the middle sate the two young persons, who though they had likewise wreaths of lawrel upon their heads, yet over them hung a large and costly crown. Now albeit they were not at this time so fair as I had before imagined to my self, yet so it was to be. Scomna. assessores.Behind them on a round form sat for the most part antient men, yet none had any sword or other weapon about him. Neither saw I any life-guard but certain Virgins which were with us the day before, and who sate on the sides of Cupide.the arch. I cannot pass in silence how the little Cupid flew to and again there, but for the most part he hovered
about the great crown. Sometimes he seated himself in between the two lovers, somewhat smiling upon them with his bow. Sometimes he made as if he would shoot one of us; in brief, this knave was so full of his waggery, that he would not spare even the little birds, which in Aves.multitudes flew up and down the room, but tormented them all he could. The virgins also had their pastimes with him, Virgines. and when they could catch him it was no easie matter for him to get from them again. Thus this little knave made all the sport and mirth. Before the Queen stood a smallSupellex in aula altare. but inexpressibly curious altar, wherein lay a book1. Book. covered with black velvet, only a little overlaid with gold. By this stood a taper in an ivory candlestick, which, although very2. Taper. small, burnt continually, and stood in that manner, that had not Cupid, in sport, now and then puffed upon it, we could not have conceived it to be fire. By this stood a sphere or celestial globe, which of itself turned about.3. Sphære. Next this was a small striking-watch, by that a little4. Watch. christal pipe or syphon-fountain, out of which perpetually5. Little Fountain. ran a clear blood-red liquor, and last of all there was a scull or death's head, in which was a white serpent, of such a6. Scull. serpent. length, that though she crept circle-wise about the rest of it, yet her taile still remained in one of the eye-holes until her head again entered at the other; so she never stirred from her scull, unless Cupid twitched a little at her, when she slipt in so suddenly that we could not choose but marvel at it. There were hung up and down the room wonderful images, which moved as if alive. Likewise, as we wereImagines. passing out, there began such marvellous vocal musick thatMusicæ. I could not tell whether it were performed by the virgins who yet stayed behind, or by the images themselves. We,Disceditur ex laboratorio being for this time satisfied, went thence with our virgins
who, the musitians, being already present, led us down the winding stairs, the door being diligently locked and bolted. As soon as we were come again into the hall, one of the virgins began:--"I wonder, Sister, that you durst adventureVirgines jocantur de senio autoris. yourself amongst so many persons." "My Sister," replyed our president, "I am fearful of none so much as of this man," pointing at me. This speech went to my heart, for I understood that she mocked at my age, and indeed I was the oldest of all; yet she comforted me by promising, that in case I behaved myself well towards her, she would easily rid me of this burden.
Convivium cum virginibus.Meantime a collation was again brought in, and every one's Virgin seated by him, who well knew how to shorten the time with handsom discourses, but what these and Sermones conviviales.their sports were I dare not blab out of school. Most of the questions were about the arts, whereby I could lightly gather that both young and old were conversant in the sciences. Still it run in my thoughts how I might become Autor mæstus ob senium.young again, whereupon I was somewhat the sadder. This the Virgin perceived, and, therefore, began:--"I dare lay anything, if I lye with him to-night, he shall be pleasanter in the morning." Hereupon they began to laugh, and albeit I blushed all over, I was fain to laugh too at my Jocosum solatium accipit à Virgine.own ill-luck. Now there was one there that had a mind to return my disgrace upon the Virgin, whereupon he said:--"I hope not only we but the virgins themselves will bear witness, that our Lady President hath promised herself to Socio.be his bed-fellow to-night." "I should be well content with it," replyed the Virgin, "if I had not reason to be afraid of these my sisters; there would be no hold with them should I choose the best and handsomest for myself." Virg. lucif."My Sister," presently began another, "we find hereby
that thy high office makes thee not proud, wherefore if by thy permission we might by lot part the Lords here present, thou shouldst, with our goodwill, have such a prerogative." We let this pass for a jest, and began again to discourse together, but our Virgin could not leave tormenting us, and continued:--"My lords, how if we should permit fourtune to decide which of us must be together to-night?" Ludicra electio una dormientium. "Well," said I, "if it may be no otherwise, we cannot refuse such a proffer." Now because it was concluded to make this trial after meat, we resolved to sit no longer at table, so we arose and each walked up and down with his Virgin. "Nay," said the president, "it shall not be so yet, but let us see how fortune will couple us," upon which we were separated. Now first arose a dispute how the business should be carried out, but this was only a premeditated device, for the Virgin instantly proposed that we should mix ourselves in a ring, and that she beginning to count from herself, the seventh was to be content with the following seventh, were it a virgin or man. We were not aware of any craft, and therefore permitted it so to be; but when we thought we had very well mingled ourselves, the Virgins were so subtil that each knew her station before-hand. The president began to reckon, the seventh next her was a Virgin, the third seventh a Virgin likewise, and this continued till, to our amazement, all the Virgins came forth and none of us was hit. Thus we poor wretches remained standing alone, and were forced to confess that we had been handsomely couzened, albeit, whoever had seen us in our order might sooner have expected the sky to fall then that it should never have come to our turn. Herewith our sport was abandoned. In the interim the little wanton Cupid came also in unto us, but because he
presented himself on behalf of their Royal Majesties, and deliverd us a health from them out of a golden cup, and was to call our Virgin to the King, withal declaring he could not at this time tarry, we could not sport ourselves with him, so, with a due return of our most humble thanks we let him flye forth again. Now because the mirth began to fall into my consort's feet, and the Virgins were nothing A merry dance.sorry to see it, they lead up a civil dance which I rather beheld with pleasure then assisted, for my mercurialists were so ready with their postures, as if they had been long Hospites invitantur a virgine Luscif. ad comediam.of the trade. After some few dances, our president came in again, and told us how the artists and students had offered themselves to their Royal Majesties before their departure to act a merry comedy; and if we thought good to be present thereat, and to waite upon their Royal Majesties to the House of the Sun, it would be acceptable to them. Hereupon we returned our humble thanks for the honour vouchsafed us, and most submissively tendered our small service, which the Virgin related, and presently brought word to attend their Royal Majesties in the gallery, whither we were soon led, and staid not long there, for the Processus Regis ad spectandum comediam.Royal Procession was just ready, yet without musick. The unknown Queen who was yesterday with us went foremost with a small and costly coronet, apparelled in white satin, and carrying nothing but a small crucifix made of a pearl, and this very day wrought between the young King and his Bride. After her went the six fore-mentioned Virgins in two ranks, carrying the King's jewels belonging to the little altar. Next to these came the three Kings. The Bridegroom was in the midst of them with a plain dress of black sattin, after the Italian mode. He had on a small round black hat, with a little black pointed feather, which
he courteously put off to us, thereby to signify his favour towards us. To him we bowed, as we had been before instructed. After the Kings came the three Queens, two whereof were richly habited; she in the middle went likewise all in black, and Cupid held up her train. Intimation was given us to follow, and after us the Virgins, old Atlas bringing up the rear. Through many stately walks we came to the House of the Sun, there next to the King and Queen, upon a richly furnished scaffold, to behold the foreordained comedy. We, though separated, stood on theStatio spectatorum right hand of the Kings, but the Virgins on the left, except those to whom the Royal Ensignes were committed. To them was allotted a peculiar standing at top of all, but the rest of the attendants were content to stand below between the columns. Now because there are many remarkable passages in this Comedy, I will in brief run it over. A Precipuâ quæ agebantur.
First of all came forth a very antient King with someActus 1. servants; before his throne was brought a little chest, with mention that it was found upon the water. Being opened, there appeared in it a lovely babe, together with certain jewels, and a small parchment sealed, and superscribed to the King. This the King presently opened, and having read it, he wept and declared to his servants how injuriously the King of the had deprived his aunt of her country, and had extinguished all the royal seed even to this infant, with the Daughter of which country he had purposed to match his Son. Hereupon he swore to maintain perpetual enmity with the Moore and his allies, and to revenge this on him. He commanded that the Child should be tenderly nursed, and to make preparations against the Moore. This provision, and the discipline of the young lady (who after she was a little grown up was committed
to an ancient tutor), continued all the first act, with Interludium.many laudable sports beside. In the interlude a Lyon and Griffon were set at one another, and the Lyon got the victory; this was also a pretty sight.
Actus 2.In the second act, the Moore, a black, treacherous fellow, came forth, who having with vexation understood that his murder was discovered, and that a little lady was craftily stollen from him, began to consult how by stratagem he might encounter so powerful an adversary, whereof he was at length advised by certain fugitives who fled to him through famine. So the young lady, contrary to all expectation, fell again into his hands, whom had he not been wonderfully deceived by his own servants, he had like to have slain. Thus this act was concluded with a mervelous triumph of the Moore.
Actus 3.In the third act a great army on the King's part was raised against the Moore, and put under the conduct of an ancient, valiant knight, who fell into the Moore's country, till he forceably rescued the young Lady from a tower, and apparelled her anew. After this they erected a glorious scaffold and placed her upon it; presently came twelve royal embassadors, amongst whom the Knight made a speech, alledging that the King, his most gracious Lord, had not only heretofore delivered her from death, and caused her to be royally brought up, though she had not behaved herself altogether as became her, but, moreover, had, before others, elected her as a spouse for the young Lord, his Son, most gratiously desiring that the espousals might be really executed in case they would be sworn to his Majesty upon the following articles. Hereupon out of a patent he caused certain glorious conditions to be read; the young Lady took an oath inviolably to observe the
same, returning thanks in most seemly sort for so high a grace. Whereupon they began to sing to the praise of God, of the King, and the young Lady, and for this time so departed. In sport, meanwhile, the four beasts of , Interludium. as he saw them in the vision, were brought ilk, all which had its certain signification.
In the fourth act the young Lady was restored to herActus 4. lost kingdom and crowned, being in this array conducted about the place with extraordinary joy. After various embassadors presented themselves not only to wish her prosperity but also to behold her glory. Yet it was not long that she preserved her integrity, but began to look wantonly about her, and to wink at the embassadors and lords. These her manners were soon known to the Moore, who would by no means neglect such an opportunity; and because her steward had not sufficient regard to her, she was easily blinded with great promises, so that she had no good confidence in her King, but privily submitted herself to the intire disposal of the Moore, who having by her consent gotten her into his hands, he gave her words so long till all her kingdom had subjected itself to him; after which, in the third scene of this act, he caused her to be led forth, stript naked, and then upon a scurvy wooden scaffold bound to a post, well scourged, and at last sentenced to death. This woful spectacle made the eyes of many to run over. Naked as she was, she was cast into prison, there to expect death by poyson, which, however, killed her not, but made her leprous all over. Thus this act was for the most part lamentable. Between they brought forth image, which was adorned with all manner of arms on the head, breast, legs, and feet, of which more shall be spoken in the future explication.
Actus 5.In the fifth act the young King was acquainted with all that had passed between the Moore and his future spouse, who interceded with his father for her, intreating that she might not be left in that condition, and embassadors were dispatched to comfort her, but withal to give her notice of her inconsiderateness. She, nevertheless, would not receive them, but consented to be the Moore's concubine, and the young King was acquainted with it. Interludium.After this comes a band of fools, each of which brought a cudgel, wherewith they made a great globe of the world, and undid it again, the which was a fine sportive phantsie.
Actus 6.In the sixth act, the young King resolved to bid battle to the Moore, which was done, and albeit the Moore was discomfited, yet all held the young King for dead, but he came again to himself, released his spouse, and committed her to his steward and chaplain, the first whereof tormented her mightily, while the priest was so insolently wicked that he would needs be above all, till the same was reported to the young King, who dispatched one to break the neck of the priest's mightiness, and adorn the bride in Interludium.some measure for the nuptials. After this act a vast artificial elephant was brought in, carrying a great tower with musitians, which was well pleasing to all.
Actus 7.In the last act the bride-groom appeared in such pomp as is not well to be believed. The bride met him in the like solemnity, whereupon all the people cried out--VIVAT Comædorum applansus erga Regem et Reginam.SPONSUM, VIVAT SPONSA, so that by this comedy they did withal congratulate our King and Queen in the most stately manner, which pleased them most extraordinary well. At length they made some pastes about the stage, till at last they altogether began thus to sing.
After this thanks were returned, and the comedy wasEpilogus. finished with joy to the particular liking of the Royal Persons, who, the evening being already hard by, departed in their fore-mentioned order, we attending them up theHospites invitantur ad cœnam Regis et Reginæ. winding stairs into the previous hall, where the tables were already richly furnished. This was the first time that we were invited to the King's table. The little altar was placed in the midst of the hall, and the six royal ensignes were laid upon it. The young King behaved himself veryRex Adolesc. gratiously towards us, yet he could not be heartily merry; he discoursed a little with us, yet often sighed, at which the little Cupid only mocked, and played his waggish tricks. The old King and Queen were very serious, but the wifeReges adulti. of one of the ancient Kings was gay enough, the cause
Ordo discumbarium.whereof I understood not. The Royal Persons took up the first table, at the second we only sate; at the third some of the principal Virgins placed themselves. The rest were fain to wait. This was performed with such state and solemn stillness that I am afraid to make many words of it. Ornatus vestium.All the Royal Persons, before meat, attired themselves in snow-white glittering garments. Over the table hung the great golden crown, the pretious stones whereof, without Corona super mensam.other light, would have sufficiently illuminated the hall. All the lights were kindled at the small taper upon the altar. The young king frequently sent meat to the white serpent, which caused me to muse. Almost all the prattle Cupido was the merriest.at this banquet was made by Cupid, who could not leave us, and me especially, untormented, and was perpetually producing some strange matter. However, there was no considerable mirth, from whence I could imagine some great imminent peril. There was no musick heard, and if we were demanded anything, we were fain to give short Sermones breves.answers, and so let it rest. In short, all things had so strange a face that the sweat began to trickle down over my body, and I believe that the stoutest-hearted man would have lost courage. Supper being almost ended, the young King commanded the book to be reached him from Oratio Regis adolescentis.the altar. This he opened and caused it again to be propounded to us by an old man whether we resolved to abide with him in prosperity and adversity, which we having with trembling consented to, he further caused us sadly to be demanded whether we would give him our hands on it, which, when we could fain no reason, was fain so to be. One after another rose and with his own hand writ himself down in this book, after which the little christal fountain was brought near, together with a very small christal glass,
out of which all the Royal Persons drank; afterwards it was reached to us, and so forward to all, and this was called the Draught of Silence. Hereupon all the RoyalHaustus de silentio. Persons presented us their hands, declaring that in case we did not now stick to them we should never hereafter see them, which verily made our eyes run over. But our president engaged herself and promised largely on ourFide jubetur virg. lucif. behalf, which gave them satisfaction. Mean time a little bell was tolled, at which all the Royal Persons waxed so mighty bleak that we were ready utterly to despair. They quickly put off their white garments and assumed intirelyMors Regulorum. black ones; the whole hall was hung with black velvet, the floor covered with the same, with which also the ceiling was overspread. The tables were also removed, all seated themselves upon the form, and we also had put on black habits. Our president, who was before gone out, comes in again, bearing six black taffeta scarffs, with which she bound the six Royal Persons’ eyes, and there were immediately brought in by the servants six covered coffins, which were set down, a low black seat being placed in their midst. Finally, there stept in a cole-black, tall man, who bare in his hand a sharp ax. Now after that the old KingDecollatio Regum. had been brought to the seat, his head was instantly whipt off and wrapped in a black cloth, the blood being received in a great golden goblet, and placed with him in the coffin that stood by, which, being covered, was set aside. Thus it went with the rest, so that I thought it would have come to me too, but as soon as the six Royal Persons were beheaded, the black man retired, another following who just before the door beheaded him also, and brought backCarnificis. his head, which, with the ax, was laid in a little chest. This indeed seemed to me a bloody Wedding, but, because
[paragraph continues] I could not tell what the event would be, I was fain to captivate my understanding until I were further resolved. Hospites mærent. Solatium.The Virgin, seeing that some of us were faint-hearted and wept, bid us be content, saying:--"The life of these standeth now in your hands, and in case you follow me, this death shall make many alive."
Herewith she intimated we should go sleep and trouble ourselves no further, for they should have their due right. She bade us all good night, saying that she must watch the Cura nocturna mortuorum.dead corps. We then were conducted by our Pages into our lodgings. My Page talked with me of sundry matters, and gave me cause enough to admire his understanding, but his intention was to lull me asleep, which at last I observed, whereupon I made as though I was fast asleep, but no sleep came to my eyes, and I could not put the beheaded out of my mind. Now my lodging was directly Cubiculum.over against the great lake, so that I could look upon Visio nocturna.it, the windows being nigh the bed. About midnight I espied on the lake a great fire, wherefore I quickly opened the window to see what would become of it. Then from far I saw seven ships making forward all full of lights. Above each of them hovered a flame that passed to and fro, and sometimes descended, so that I could lightly judge that it must needs be the spirits of the beheaded. The ships gently approached to land, and each had no more than one mariner. When they were gotten to shore, I espied our Virgin with a torch going towards them, after Cadavera avehuntur trans Lacum.whom the six covered coffins, together with the little m. chest, were carried, and each was privily laid in a ship. Wherefore I awaked my Page, who hugely thanked me, for having run much up and down all day, he might quite have over-slept this, though he well knew it. As
soon as the coffins were laid in the ships, all the lights were extinguished, and the six flames passed back together over the lake, so that there was but one light for a watch in each ship. There were also some hundreds of watchmen encamped on the shore, who sent the Virgin back again into the Castle, she carefully bolting all up again; so that I could judge that there was nothing more to be done this night. We again betook ourselves to rest. I only of allAutor solus hæc vidit. my company had a chamber towards the lake and saw this. Then being extream weary I fell asleep in my manifold speculations.