Translated by Andrew Lang
er chains, lie at their feet. They listen, and look, and do not think of the minstrel with his grey head and his green heart, but we think of him. It is an old man's work, and a weary man's work. You can easily tell the places where he has lingered, and been pleased as he wrote. They are marked, like the bower Nicolete built, with flowers and broken branches wet with dew. Such a passage is the description of Nicolete at her window, in the strangely painted chamber,
"ki faite est par grant devisse
panturee a miramie."
"she saw the roses blow,
Heard the birds sing loud and low."
Again, the minstrel speaks out what many must have thought, in those incredulous ages of Faith, about Heaven and Hell, Hell where the gallant company makes up for everything. When he comes to a battlepiece he makes Aucassin "mightily and knightly hurl through the
press," like one of Malory's men. His hero must be a man of his hands, no mere sighing youth incapable of arms. But the minstrels