THE CHYMICAL WEDDING OF
Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz: Anno 1459" was written down in 1604,
and first published in Strasbourg in 1616, having been widely circulated
in manuscript during the intervening years.
It was written
down by Valentin Andreae, then a seventeen-year-old student in Tubingen
University, later to become a Lutheran pastor. Of him Rudolf Steiner says:
"His hand wrote it, his body was present; but through him a spiritual
power not then on earth wished to communicate this to men, in a way which
at that time was possible." 1 (Lecture, December 9, 1923).
"The year 1459
in the title indicates the year in which, in a decisive and actual way
- the new Rosicrucian Movement was founded in the West."2 (Karl Heyer:
Lecture Course on the Historical Impulse of Rosicrucianism) (SEE NOTE
speaks of Rosicrucianism as "a Mystery School having as its aim the cultivation
of an understanding of the Christ Mystery in a way suited to the new era".3(Lecture:
European Mysteries and their Initiates) It is a continuation of The Order
of the Grail and the Order of the Templars; its contents are couched in
different terms in succeeding centuries to meet changes in human consciousness
and changing human needs.2
When "The Chymical
Wedding" was first written down, it was still possible to convey spiritual
revelations as they are here conveyed, in pictorial Imaginations. Later,
such Imaginations dried out into abstract, purely conceptual thinking.
Today the time is ripe to enliven the intellectual consciousness into
a renewed pictorial one. It is therefore in accordance with the spiritual
demands at this point of time that "The Chymical Wedding" again begins
to attract notice and that its beautiful sequences of imaginative piectures
again begin to speak to our hearts and understanding.
the Founder of the Rosicrucian Movement, is in our time the Keeper of
the Gate, the spiritual leader of this modern age. "The Chymical Wedding"
tells of a spiritual adventure, a kind of initiation journey, undertaken
by him as the pioneer of a new way into the higher worlds suited to our
present epoch. It is therefore a book of great significance for our time,
one that it is important should be studied both for the deep impression
made by its Mystery pictures and for an understanding of its spiritual
revelations. We need it as a traveller needs guide-book and map when he
journeys into an unknown land; for the journey of which it tells is a
journey we must all take sooner or later.
Who was, who is,
Christian Rosenkreutz? (See Note 2) Rudolf Steiner has told us that in
the middle of the thirteenth century a child was born who had a very special
destiny. He came into the care of the twelve wisest men of that age, who
by world destiny were gathered in a certain spot in Europe. The child
was very carefully trained by them, and taught their twelve-fold wisdom.
As a young man, he became very ill; he took no nourishment; his body became
almost transparent; and finally he lay in a trance for some days. When
he returned to consciousness it seemed as if the twelve streams of wisdom
had been woven by him into an all-embracing wisdom. Soon after this he
died, having in this incarnation been kept withdrawn from outer earthly
activity. He was reborn in 1378 (1 The Mission of Christian Rosenkreutz)
In 1406, when he was twenty-eight years of age, he began a seven-year
journey to many Centres of Mystery Wisdom, returning in 1413, when he
was thirty-five years of age (see Note 3). He had gathered from these
centres the essence of their teaching and now grasped intellectually the
radiant wisdom that had suffused his feeling-life in the previous century.
He was just over eighty years of age when the experience came to him which
is recounted in "The Chymical Wedding"; at the age of 106 he died.(2 Fama
Fraternitas Roseae Crucis - first printed 1614)
is said to have reappeared at the French Court at the time of the French
Revolution as the Comte de St. Germain. He warned the royal family and
the nobility of their approaching fate, but in vain. He gave to the world
the watchwords "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity"; and though these were
misunderstood by the French Revolutionists in the first flush of wild
excitement, rightly interpreted they can become watch-words of our present
epoch and the key to the development of the future. (3 The Problems of
It is said that
Christian Rosenkreutz is in almost continuous incarnation, powerfully
directing events from a hidden Centre, and always in the service of the
Christ Power. Those who wish to know of this important subject should
read The Mission of Christian Rosenkreutz, its Character and Purpose,
by Rudolf Steiner.
Plato said of
the myth of Isis and Osiris that it could be understood on twenty different
levels, and was true on all of them. This could equally be said of "The
Chymical Wedding." Our Commentary looks at its pictures on the very simplest
level; but for those who would go deeper a few slight indications of other
levels are given in the Notes.
This booklet is
the substance of a course of lectures given at Hawkwood College, July
2-9, 1964. It is printed in response to requests from members of the Course
to have the material in a permanent form for further study. We send it
out in the hope that it may be of some pleasure and profit not only to
them but also to a wider circle of people interested in such matters,
without as well as within the Anthroposophical Movement.
Dutch lecturer who was present at the Course wrote later: "I have started
to read "The Chymical Wedding" and now I begin to love it. I can read
it ten times, like a child with its picture-book." This is in accord with
Rudolf Steiner's indication that all imaginative knowledge based on truth
is healing and health-giving, and that the best educator is this same
imaginative knowledge (1 Theosophy of the Rosicrucians), an indication
which points to the importance of study of such pictorial records of spiritual
life as this story.
The outline of
the story, which has been included for readers not already familiar with
the book itself, has of necessity had to be reduced to barest essentials;
but as far as possible we have retained the phraseology of the first translation
into English (made by Foxcroft in 1690), as this carries with it something
of the flavour of the language of the period in which it was first written
down. We understand that two unabridged translations into modern English,
one made in England, the other in America, will shortly be available at
the Rudolf Steiner Book Shop, 35 Park Road, London, N.W. 1, and from New
Knowledge Books, 18 Elizabeth Crescent, East Grinstead, Sussex.
For this first
tentative effort in understanding the story we have drawn largely on Rudolf
Steiner's three articles published in Das Reich (October 1917 to April
1918) entitled "The Chymical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz". All quotations
from these, (given in translation) are marked with an asterisks. All other
books and lectures quoted are by Rudolf Steiner unless otherwise stated.
On Easter eve
I was sitting at my table in my cottage on a hilltop, preparing my heart
for the next day's festival, when all of a sudden there arose so horrible
a tempest that the hill whereon my little house was founded was like to
fly all in pieces.
I feared this
to be another trick of the devil, who had done me many a spite; and now
I felt my coat being twitched behind me. Hugely terrified, I turned to
look; and there I beheld a fair and glorious lady, in garments of sky-blue,
bespangled with golden stars, and with large and beautiful wings, full
of eyes, wherewith she could mount aloft and fly swifter than any eagle.
In her right hand was a golden trumpet, and in her left a great bundle
of letters in all languages, which she (as I afterwards understood) was
to carry into all countries.
From among them
she chose a small one and laid it reverently on the table. Then, without
speaking, she spread her wings and mounted upward, blowing so mighty a
blast on her gallant trumpet that for a full quarter of an hour afterward
the whole hill echoed thereof.
I took up the
letter in fear and trembling, and found it so heavy as almost to outweigh
gold. It was sealed with a little seal which bore a curious cross, together
with the inscription, "In this Sign conquer," at which I felt greatly
comforted, knowing that this sign was little acceptable, and much less
useful, to the devil.
Inside I found
this verse written, in golden letters on an azure ground:
day, this day, this, this,
The Royal Wedding is.
If you by birth and by God's choice
Are bidden to this feast, rejoice!
Forthwith now to the mountain wend
Whereon three stately Temples stand,
And there see all from end to end.
Yourself examine first with care;
Let him who weighs too light beware;
No guest this Wedding can endure
Who keeps not watch and is not pure."
As I read these
warnings, all my hair stood on end. Seven years previously, I had learned
in a vision that one day I would be invited to a Royal Wedding; and when
I now calculated the positions of the planets, I found that this was indeed
the appointed time. But when I examined myself, as bidden by the letter,
and contemplated my blindness in mysterious things, my ticklings of the
flesh, my rearing of stately palaces in the air and other like carnal
designs, I was so overwhelmed by my own unworthiness that I swung between
hope and fear. The obscure words concerning the three Temples also afflicted
At last I begged
of my good angel that I might be rightly directed in my sleep.
In my sleep I
found myself in a dark dungeon, fettered, with a multitude of companions
all struggling with their chains and swarming like bees over each other.
When presently we heard trumpets and kettle drums, and the dungeon was
uncovered, and a small light lowered into it, I contrived to slip from
under the rest and heave myself on to a boulder against the dungeon wall.
Then an old man
with ice-grey locks appeared at the edge of the opening, calling for silence.
He announced that, by the grace of his ancient Mother, a rope would be
let down seven times among us, and that whoever was able to cling to it
would be drawn up and set at liberty.
When the Ancient
Matron's servants let down the rope, I could get nowhere near it, while
the heaving of the rest was pitiful to see. After seven minutes a little
bell rang, and the rope was drawn up with four men clinging to it. Again
and yet again the rope descended, and each time a few more were drawn
up, those already released helping the servants to pull.
At its sixth lowering,
the rope swung aside, so that I was able to catch it, and so beyond all
hope came out, bleeding from a head-wound received from a sharp stone
on the way.
Now the dungeon
was covered again, and those of us who had been drawn up were freed from
our fetters, and our names recorded on a golden tablet. As we thanked
the Ancient Matron for our deliverance and took our leave of her, each
of us was given a piece of gold to spend by the way, stamped on one side
with the rising sun, and on the other with the letters D.L.S.
As for me, I could
scarcely well go forward for the wounds left on my feet by the fetters.
The Ancient Matron, seeing this, said to me: "My son, let not this defect
afflict you, but thank God, Who hath permitted you, even in this world,
to come into so high a light. Keep these wounds for my sake."
Pondering my dream
when I awoke, I well understood from it that God had vouchsafed me to
be present at this mysterious and hidden Wedding. So I rose and arrayed
myself in a white linen coat with a blood-red stole bound cross- wise
over my shoulders; then, with four red roses stuck in my hat, and taking
bread, salt and water for food by the way, I set out joyfully on my journey.
Now I went singing
through a forest filled with Nature's rejoicings, emerging on a green
heath, where stood three tall cedar trees, to one of which was fastened
a tablet, offering a choice of four ways to the Wedding.
The first it described
as short but dangerous, leading into rocky places scarcely possible to
pass. The second was long, but easy provided we kept to it and were guided
by our magnet. The third was a royal road, which only one in a thousand
might follow. The fourth was a consuming way, encompassed by fire and
cloud, fit only for incorruptible bodies.
The tablet warned
us that once we had entered upon any of these ways there could be no turning
back, and that if we knew ourselves by the smallest fault to be unworthy,
we should not venture further.
At these dire
warnings, I sank down beneath the tree in great perturbation of spirit.
While I sat perplexed, pondering whether to turn back, and, if not, which
way to follow, I took out a slice of my bread from my bag and began to
At once a snow-white
dove fluttered down from the branches above, betaking herself to me very
familiarly, and I willingly shared my slice of bread with her. But now
a black raven darted down at the dove, who took refuge in flight, the
raven hastening after her and I after him.
When I had chased
the raven away, I bethought me of my bag and bread, left behind beneath
the cedar. But when I turned myself about, to go back to retrieve them,
a contrary wind was so strong against me that it was ready to fell me;
yet if I went forward, I perceived no hindrance. Looking about me, I saw
I was already, without my knowledge, entered upon one of the four ways
- the long, circuitous one.
So all that day
I followed this road, taking care to stray neither to the left nor to
the right. The way itself was so rugged that I was often in doubt about
it; but the dove had flown due south, so with the help of my compass I
kept strictly to that direction.
At last, just
as the sun was setting, I spied a stately Portal, set high on a distant
hill. So now I made mighty haste, to reach it before nightfall, seeing
elsewhere no other abiding-place.
As I drew near,
a venerable man in a sky-blue habit stepped forth, made himself known
as the Guardian of the Portal, and asked for my Letter of Invitation.
With what joy did I present it!
When the Guardian
heard my name and that I was a Brother of the Rose Cross, he both wondered
and seemed to rejoice at it, and treated me with abundance of respect,
saying: "Come in, my brother. An acceptable guest you are to me!"
In exchange for
my bottle of water, the Guardian gave me a golden token, and with it a
sealed letter for the Guardian of the Second Portal, entreating me that
when these stood me in good stead I would remember him.
Dusk was now falling;
and a beautiful Virgin, robed in sky-blue and bearing a glorious torch,
was lighting lanterns along the road to the inner Portal. To this I hastened,
and was dismayed to find it barred by a terrible chained lion, who, as
soon as he espied me, arose and made at me with great roaring.
This awoke the
Guardian, who was asleep on a slab of marble; he drove back the lion,
and, having read the sealed letter, greeted me with great respect, crying:
"Now welcome in
God's name unto me, the man who of long time I would gladly have seen!"
In exchange for
my salt, this second Guardian gave me a second token.
By now the dusk
had deepened, and a bell began to ring within the Castle. The Guardian
warned me to run apace, or I would not reach the innermost gate before
it closed for the night. The lights along the path were already being
extinguished, and I was thankful to have the Virgin's torch to guide me
through the darkness. As I entered the Third Portal at her very heels,
the gate clapped to so suddenly that part of my coat was locked out, and,
since its Guardian could not be prevailed upon to open the gate again,
had to be left behind.
The Third Guardian
now wrote my name in a little book of vellum, and gave me a third token,
together with a new pair of shoes, for the floor of the Castle was pure
shining marble. My old pair I bestowed on a beggar who sat by the gate.
Two pages, each
bearing a torch, now conducted me into the Castle, and left me alone in
a little room, where, to my terror, invisible barbers cut away the hair
from the crown of my head, but on my forehead, ears and eyes they permitted
my ice-grey locks to hang. The hair cut off was carefully gathered up
by invisible hands and carried away.
Now a little bell
began to ring; and the two pages, returning, lighted me through many doors
and up winding stairs to a spacious hall, where there was a great multitude
of guests -- emperors, kings, princes, lords, noble and ignoble, rich
and poor, all sorts of people, including some I knew well, and as yet
had never any reason to esteem; these, when I enquired of them as to their
route, I found had mostly been forced to clamber over the rocks.
trumpets sounded to bid us to the feast, these were they who scrambled
for the highest seats, so that for me and some other sorry fellows there
was hardly a little nook left at the lowermost table. But next to me was
sitting a very fine, quiet man, who discoursed of excellent matters.
Meat was now brought
in, and served by invisible hands, everything so orderly managed that
it seemed as if every guest had his own attendant. When one boasted that
he could see these invisible servitors, one of them reached him so handsome
a cuff upon his lying muzzle that not only he, but many who were by him,
became as mute as mice.
As they grew warm
with wine, these guests of the lewder sort began to vaunt of their abilities;
one heard the movements of the Heavens, the second could see Plato's Ideas,
the third could number the atoms of Democritus. One would prove this,
another that; and commonly the most sorry idiots made the loudest noise.In
this tumult I had almost cursed the day wherein I had come hither, and
I opined that the Lord Bridegroom would have done well to seek some other
fool than me for his wedding. But this was really one part of the lameness
whereof I had dreamed.
Suddenly we heard
strains of such delicate music that the babel was hushed and no one spoke
one word for the space of half an hour. Then came louder music, all so
master-like as if the Emperor of Rome had been entering. The door opened
of itself, and many thousands of lighted tapers entered, marching of themselves,
and followed by a gliding gilded throne, on which sat the Virgin whose
torch had lighted me to the Castle. She was robed no longer in sky- blue,
but in snow-white, sparkling with purest gold.
She welcomed us
in the name of the Bride and the Bridegroom, but warned us that next morning
we must all be weighed, to determine which were worthy to stay and assist
at the Wedding. Any who felt assured of his own worthiness was now to
be conducted to his bed-chamber; any who felt doubtful was to spend the
night in this hall.
When she had departed
on her gliding throne, the tapers, held by invisible hands, conducted
the confident to their beds. Only I and eight others remained in the hall,
among them my table companion. An hour later, pages came in, bound all
nine of us with ropes, and left us to spend the night in darkness and
discomfort, bewailing our presumption in accepting the Wedding invitation.
But during the
night I dreamed that I stood on a high mountain, overlooking a great valley,
in which a multitude of men were suspended, some high, some low, by ropes
looped round their necks. An ancient man flew up and down among them,
cutting the ropes with his shears. Those who had hung near the earth fell
gently; those who had hung high had a most shameful fall. This scene joyed
me at the heart, till, in my highest fit of jollity, I waked.
This dream I recounted
to my companion, who felt assured that by it some comfort was intended.
So he and I lay side by side in the dark, and passed the time till daybreak
in harmonious discourse.
At daybreak those
who had deemed themselves worthy came again into the hall where we others
still lay bound. Then a fanfare of trumpets ushered in the Virgin, arrayed
now in red velvet, girded with a white scarf, and on her head a green
wreath of laurel, which much became her.
She was attended
by two hundred knights in armour, with surcoats of red and white; some
of these she directed to unbind us, and to place us where we could see
well what was to follow. Seeing me among them, she laughed and exclaimed:
"Good lack! Have you also submitted yourself to the yoke? I imagined you
would have made yourself very snug!"
Great golden scales
were now brought in and hung in the middle of the hall, beside them was
placed a little table covered with red velvet and bearing seven weights
- a pretty great one, then four little ones, then two great ones severally;
these weights in proportion to their bulk were so heavy that no man can
believe it. The knights were divided into seven groups, the captain of
each being placed in charge of one of the weights.
A stately Emperor
was the first to step into the scale. One by one the captains laid in
their weights; the first six he withstood, but when the seventh was added
he was outweighed; he was therefore bound and delivered over in great
anguish to the sixth band of knights. One by one the other Emperors were
in turn weighed and also found wanting, except the last, who held out
so steadfastly that methought had there been more weights he would have
outstood these, too.
To him the Virgin,
rising and bowing, gave a red velvet gown and a laurel branch, and seated
him on the steps of her throne.
The other ranks
- kings, lords, gentry, learned and unlearned - were now all weighed in
turn. In each condition, one, at most two, but mostly none, passed the
test; those who did so were, like the Emperor, honoured with a red velvet
gown, a laurel bough, and a seat on the steps of the Virgin's throne.
Now it was our
turn, we who had slept in the hall. Only my companion and I outstayed
all the weights. My companion held out bravely, whereupon all applauded
him, and the Virgin showed him deep respect. When, with trembling, I myself
stepped up, my companion, who already sat by in his velvet, looked friendly
upon me, and the Virgin herself smiled a little.
So far did I outstay
all the weights that to these the Virgin added three knights in full armour.
Still I outweighed them all, upon which one of the pages stood up, and
cried out, exceeding loud:
Because I had
proved the weightiest, the Virgin graciously permitted me to release one
of the captives, whomsoever I pleased; I elected the first emperor, who
was immediately set free, and with all respect seated among us. Meanwhile,
the Virgin espied my roses, which I had taken out of my hat into my hands;
thereupon by her page she graciously requested them of me, which I readily
By ten in the
forenoon we had all been weighed. At the meal which followed, we in our
red velvet robes were seated at the high table, which was also decked
with red velvet and set with drinking-cups of pure silver and gold. Here
two pages presented to us, on the Bridegroom's behalf, the insignia of
the Golden Fleece and the Flying Lion.
who before had been invisible were now visible to us, whereat I was exceeding
joyful. To those others who had failed, and who were now seated at a lower
table, the attendants were still invisible.
When the meal
was over, and a golden chalice sent by the Bridegroom had gone round,
we new Knights of the Golden Fleece, seated on the steps of the Virgin's
throne, were carried into the garden, to see those who had failed receive
judgement. Here the Virgin led us by winding stairs into a gallery. But
how the Emperor whom I had released behaved towards me I cannot relate
for fear of slander.
And now that the
virgin who had brought me my invitation, and whom I had hitherto never
since seen, stepped forward and, giving one blast upon her trumpet, declared
sentence on those guests who had been weighed and found wanting. Those
who had weighed only a little too light were allowed to redeem themselves
with gold and jewels, and to depart with dignity, receiving at the door
the Draught of Forgetfulness. Some, who were lighter, were to be stripped
and sent forth naked. Some, lighter yet, were to be scourged forth with
rods and whips. Those who were proved imposters, and had never been invited,
were to forfeit their lives to sword or halter.
Watching the execution
of these sentences, I felt my eyes run over, till at last the garden,
which had been so full, was emptied, and a silence fell upon it.
Into this silence
delicately stepped a snow-white unicorn, a golden collar about his neck.
He knelt in reverence before a lion who stood on a fountain with a naked
sword held in his paw. The lion broke the sword, and the pieces sank into
the fountain; then he reared till a snow-white dove came flying to him
with an olive branch in her bill. This the lion devoured, and so was quieted;
and the unicorn returned to his place with joy, while our Virgin led us
back down the winding stairs.
When we had washed
our heads and hands in the fountain, we each received from the Virgin
a richly habited and learned page, able aptly to discourse on all subjects,
by whom we were conducted back into the Castle, and shown its paintings,
treasures, and antiquities. Many occupied themselves in copying the paintings;
but I, on whom the page of greatest power had been bestowed, was led with
my companion into parts of the Castle usually kept private, the keys of
these having been committed to my page.
Here for several
hours we stayed, seeing treasures none of the others were permitted to
see, such as the Royal Sepulchre, with its glorious Phoenix, and a most
noble Library. Though by now it had struck seven, and I began to feel
the pangs of hunger, I was yet well content; I could be happy to fast
all my life with such an entertainment.
When the King
sent his page for the keys, we were shown a costly clockwork regulated
according to the course of the planets; and next a huge terrestrial globe,
on which we found our native lands marked with little rings of gold; others
doing likewise, we discovered that our company was drawn from all parts
of the Earth.
This globe being
hollow, we were able to sit within it and contemplate the stars glittering
in an agreeable order in the interior of the Earth, and moving so gallantly
that I had scarce any mind ever to go out again, as our page told our
Virgin, and with which she twitted me, for it was already supper time,
and I was almost the last at table.
At supper, as
all grew merry with wine, the Virgin began to propound enigmas, for which,
try as we would, we could find no solution. She told us, for example:
"My sister and
I have an eagle, whom we both cherish. One day we entered our chamber
and found him with a laurel branch in his beak. I also had one in my hand;
my sister had none in hers. The eagle went first to her, and gave her
his branch, then came to me, motioning me to give him mine. Now whom did
he love the better, my sister or myself?"
The Virgin was
become so familiar that I adventured and requested her name. Smiling at
my curiosity, she replied in another riddle:
"My name contains
6 and 50, yet has only 8 letters. The third is a third part of the fifth,
which, added to the sixth, will produce a number whose sum will exceed
the third itself by just the first, and which is half of the fourth. The
fifth and seventh are equal. So are the last and first. The first and
second together equal the sixth, which contains four more than the third
tripled. Now, my lord, how am I called?"
The answer was
intricate enough; yet I left not off, but said: "Noble and virtuous Lady,
may I not obtain only one letter?"
"Yea," said she,
"that may well be done."
I proceeded, "may the seventh contain?"
said she, "as many as there are lords here".
With this I easily
found her name, at which she was well pleased.
She now invited
us to assist at the ceremony of Hanging Up the Weights. Six virgins entered,
bearing lights and escorting a stately Duchess, less worldly than our
Virgin, and looking up towards Heaven rather than towards Earth. We all
took her for the Bride, but were much mistaken, although in honour, riches
and state she much surpassed the Bride, and afterwards ruled the whole
To me she said:
"You have received more than others; see that you also make a larger return."
To me this was
a very strange sermon.
Though the scales
had been removed from the hall, the weights were still standing on their
little table. The Duchess directed each of her virgins to take up one,
and to our Virgin she gave her own, the largest and heaviest. The company
then went in procession up to seven chapels, in the first of which our
Virgin hung up the Duchess's weight, while in each of the others one of
the other virgins hung up hers; in all the chapels, led by the Duchess,
we sang a hymn together and prayed that the Royal Wedding might be blessed.
Then each of us
was conducted by his page to a richly furnished bedchamber, where the
page lay on a pallet near him, in case he had need of anything in the
night. This was the first night that I slept in quiet; and yet a scurvy
dream would not suffer me to rest, for I was troubled with a door which
I could not open, though at last I did so; and with these fantasies I
passed the time till I awaked.
I over-slept my breakfast, they being unwilling to waken me because of
my age; but I was soon ready with my habit, and found the rest assembled
beside the fountain in the garden.
Today the lion
on the fountain, in place of his broken sword, bore a tablet announcing
that in its water Prince Mercury had a healing medicine for all ills,
him drink of me who is able.
Let him who will, wash.
Let him trouble me who dares.
Drink, Brethren, and live!"
When we had all
washed in the fountain, and drunk of its water from a golden cup, we were
given new garments of cloth-of-gold, gloriously set out with flowers,
and a new insignia of the Golden Fleece, from which hung a disc of gold,
with the sun and the moon on one side, and on the other this inscription:
"The light of
the moon shall be as the light of the sun; and the light of the sun shall
be seven times brighter than at present."
Led by our Virgin
with sixty virgins in attendance, and by musicians clad in red velvet,
we mounted a winding staircase of 365 steps to the Royal Hall, where I
saw the young King and Queen as they sat in their majesty amid unspeakable
glory; for besides that the room glittered of pure gold and precious stones,
the Queen's robes were so made that I was not able to behold them.
Our Virgin presented
us to the King as wedding guests who had ventured hither at peril of body
and life. It would have been fitting for one of us to have spoken somewhat
on such an occasion; but, seeing we were all troubled with a falling of
the uvula, old Atlas, the Court Astrologer, stepped forward and welcomed
us on the King's behalf.
The young King
and Queen sat under a great arch at the western end of the hall; each
wore a wreath of laurel, and over them hung a large and costly crown.
On one side of them sat enthroned an ancient grey-bearded king with a
fair young queen; on the other, a black king, middle-aged, with a veiled
and dainty old matron.
Cupid darted hither
and thither; sometimes he seated himself between the two lovers; sometimes
he made as if he would shoot one of us; he was so full of his waggery
that he would not spare even the little birds, which flew about the chamber
in multitudes. The virgins also had their pastimes with him; and when
they could catch him, it was no easy matter for him to get from them again.
Thus this little knave made all the sport and mirth.
Before the King
and Queen stood a little altar, bearing six curious objects -- a book
bound with black velvet, overlaid with gold; a taper alight in an ivory
candlestick, upon which Cupid now and then puffed in sport; a celestial
globe, turning of itself; a chiming clock; a crystal fountain of red water;
and a skull through whose eye-holes a small white snake wound in and out.
The audience over,
the musicians played us down the winding stairs again to our own hall,
where, our mirth falling into our feet, virgins and lords struck up a
civil dance together; after which we attended their Majesties through
many stately walks to the House of the Sun, to see a merry comedy, the
Duchess leading, carrying a small pearl crucifix, her six virgins carrying
the sacred objects from the altar, and Atlas bringing up the rear.
The merry comedy
opened with an ancient King sitting upon his throne; a little chest found
floating on the sea was brought to him. In it he found the infant princess
of a neighbouring kingdom, who had been stolen by the Moors. He had her
tenderly and royally brought up, and planned to marry her to his son when
she came of age.
Again she fell
into the hands of the Moors and was rescued by an ancient knight; she
was restored to her lost kingdom and crowned queen. A third time, and
now of her own free will, she fell into the hands of the Moor, who usurped
her kingdom, stripped and scourged her, and cast her into prison.
The young king
to whom she was betrothed made war upon the Moors on her behalf, and was
victorious; he released the young queen, and restored her to her kingdom;
they were married amid great rejoicings; and the play closed with a wedding
hymn, calling down blessing on our King and Queen, and praying that a
fairer future race might spring from them.
We now returned
to the Royal Hall for the wedding feast. Though the tables were richly
furnished, and all the royal persons were attired afresh in snow- white
glittering garments, there was no music, the young King sighed often,
the old King and Queen were grave, and all was performed with such state
and solemn stillness, and all things had so strange a face, that foreboding
of some imminent peril hung over us all.
young King took the black-bound book from the altar, and asked those of
us who were resolved to keep faith with him to write our names in it.
One after another, we all rose and did so. Then the crystal fountain of
red water was brought, and with it a small crystal drinking-cup, from
which the whole company drank the Draught of Silence, as in any House
of the Mysteries.
At the tolling
of a bell, the white garments were exchanged for black ones; floors, ceiling,
walls, all were covered with black velvet. Our Virgin brought in six black
taffeta scarves, with which she bound the eyes of the three Kings and
the three Queens. The tables were removed, and six covered coffins placed
in the centre of the hall, around a low black seat. Finally, in came a
coal-black Moor, with a naked axe in his hand.
The old King was
led to the low black seat, and there solemnly and reverently beheaded.
His head was wrapped in a black cloth; his blood was caught in a golden
cup; both were placed with his body in the first coffin. One after another,
the other two Kings and the three Queens submitted with silent dignity
to the same fate. Then the black executioner, preparing to withdraw, was
himself beheaded, and his head placed with his axe in a little shrine.
To me this seemed
indeed a bloody Wedding, and I and others wept; but our Virgin bade us
be of good courage, telling us:
"The life of these
Kings and Queens stands now in your hands; if you will but follow me,
this death shall make many to live."
She bade us all
good-night, bidding our pages conduct us to our chambers. Mine alone looked
out over the lake. About midnight, being unable to sleep, I became aware
of a bright glow on the water, and, rising from by bed, I saw seven ships
sailing swiftly to the Castle, all full of lights. Over each ship hovered
a flame; as soon as I saw them I knew:
"These are the
spirits of the beheaded."
As the ships drew
gently to land, our Virgin went through the night to meet them, torch
in hand; behind her came attendants, bearing the six covered coffins and
the little shrine, which they placed one in each ship. I roused my page;
together we saw all the lights but one on each ship go out; the flames
pass again across the lake; and the Virgin return to the Castle, leaving
hundreds of watchmen encamped along the shore, to keep guard through the
Then my page and
I again retired to rest; and at last, being extremely weary, we both fell
being awake long before the rest, I entreated my page to lead me a little
about the Castle, and show me somewhat that was rare, whereupon he led
me down an underground staircase to an iron door, on which was inscribed
in copper letters:
lies buried Lady Venus, the fair woman who hath undone many a great man."
My page led me
by the hand through this door and along a dark passage to another, normally
kept locked, but unlocked today because the coffins had yesterday been
brought out through it. Through it we reached the King's Treasury, a glorious
vault which had no other light but from certain huge carbuncles, and where,
my page told me, I would see things which no human eye outside the Royal
Family had ever seen till now.
In the middle
of the vault was a rich tomb, like an altar, triangular in shape, supported
by an ox, and eagle and a lion, and made entirely of gold and precious
stones. On it, in a vessel of polished copper, stood an angel, bearing
a tree in his arms. From this tree fruit fell continually into the vessel,
turned there to water, and ran out into three smaller golden bowls.
Opening a copper
door in the pavement, my page now led me down another exceeding dark staircase
to an even deeper chamber. I was mightily terrified when he lit a torch
from a small, ever-burning taper, and asked how he durst do this. He gave
me for answer:
"As long as the
Royal Persons are still at rest, I have nothing to fear."
In this chamber,
by the light of the torch, I espied a rich bed hung about with curious
curtains, one of which my page drew, and I saw the Lady Venus, stark naked
(for he heaved up the coverlets, too), lying there in such beauty that
I was almost beside myself.
Behind the bed
was tablet, on which was inscribed:
the fruit of my tree shall be completely melted, then will I awake and
be the mother of a King."
When we ascended
again to the King's Treasury, I there observed small tapers of pyrites,
burning with flames so still and clear that I had mistaken them before
for precious stones. It was the heat from these that melted the fruit
on the tree held by the angel, and caused more fruit continually to grow.
No sooner had
we re-entered the Treasury than in flew the little Cupid, who promptly
locked the copper door leading down to Venus's chamber, exclaiming:
"My old busy grandsire,
you might lightly have served me a scurvy trick, had you been aware of
this door. I must look better to it! Yet can I not let it pass unrevenged
that you were so near stumbling upon my dear mother."
And he heated
the point of his dart in one of the taper-flames, and with it pricked
my hand. I thanked God he had lighted on us no sooner, for at his unlooked-for
appearance I felt more like the dead than the living.
I now joined my
fellow-guests in our hall, where Cupid would needs have me show him my
hand, where he still found a little drop of blood, at which he heartily
laughed, and had the rest have a care of me, as I would shortly end my
days. We all wondered how he could be so merry and have no sense of yesterday's
Our Virgin, dressed
in black velvet, now conducted us to the garden, where we found six sepulchres
under a roof supported by seven columns, above which floated a flag with
a Phoenix painted on it. Here we assisted at the interring of six coffins
and a little shrine. The other guests thought they had been present at
the royal funeral; only I knew differently.
Our Virgin now
reminded us of our oaths of allegiance to the Bridegroom, and invited
us to sail with her to the island Tower of Olympus, to assist in preparing
the medicaments needed to restore the Royal Persons to life. We willingly
followed her to the shore, where the seven ships still lay at anchor,
five of them flying planetary signs, one a globe and one a pyramid. Here
she assigned us to the various ships, which then set sail in this order:
Foremost, A, the
Pyramid, carrying the Moor's head, with twelve musicians making excellent
music. Then B, C, D, abreast, in which we were disposed, our Virgin and
I being in C, which flew the Globe. Then the two stateliest ships, E and
F, whose flags were the Sun and Moon, having no passengers. In the rear,
G, in which were forty virgins.
From the lake
we passed through a narrow strait into the sea, where sirens, nymphs and
sea-goddesses swam to meet us, begging to be allowed to sing to us. Our
Virgin, having re-arranged her ships in a pentagon about the Sun and Moon,
yielded to their entreaties, whereupon the sirens sang of love so delicately
and sweetly that I no more wondered at Ulysses for stopping the ears of
his companions; Cupid began to work with me, too, which tended little
to my credit. This was the wound I received on my head in a dream.
Presently we sailed
on, and after some hours came within sight of the Tower of Olympus. Its
Warden, a very ancient man, came out in a gilded pinnace to receive us
and conduct us to his island. This was a perfect square, with a great
wall running all round it, two hundred and sixty paces thick. The Tower
itself was as if seven round towers had been built one by another, yet
the middlemost was somewhat higher, and within they all entered one into
At the gate of
the Tower, we were led a little aside while the six coffins and the little
shrine were brought in without anyone but myself noticing. Then we were
taken into its underground laboratory, to wash herbs, crush precious stones
and extract juices and essences, our Virgin being so busy with us, and
so full of directions, that she knew not how to give us employment enough.
By nightfall these
tasks were completed; a little broth and a little wine were distributed,
and mattresses were laid on the laboratory floor. I could not sleep, but
walked for a while in the garden, where, coming to stone steps leading
to the top of the wall, I mounted them, to contemplate the calm, moonlit
sea and the starry sky.
Here I was much
moved to observe a conjunction of the planets such as is seldom seen.
Then, just before midnight, I saw the seven flames appear again far across
the sea, and pass over it to the island, coming to rest above the spire
of the central tower.
Suddenly the winds
rose, the sea grew rough, and clouds covered the moon. Hastily I stumbled
back to the laboratory, where, lulled by a gently purling fountain, I
quickly fell asleep.
the Warden of the Tower entered the underground laboratory, followed by
youths carrying ladders, ropes and large wings.
"My dear sons,"
he said, "one of these three things must each one of you this day constantly
bear about with him. To make choice you shall cast lots."
My lot fell on
a ladder, twelve foot long, and pretty weighty; and I must be forced to
carry it, whereas the others could handsomely coil their ropes about them,
while as for the wings, the old man joined them so neatly on to the third
sort as if they had grown upon them.
He then withdrew,
taking with him the fruits of our yesterday's labours, and locking the
door behind him, so that we imagined we had been imprisoned in the Tower.
But after a quarter of an hour, a round hole in the ceiling was uncovered
from above, where we saw our Virgin, who bade us a cheerful goodmorrow,
desiring us to come up. The winged sort were able to do so instantly.
Those with ladders followed, each drawing up his ladder after him. But
those with ropes had to wait until these had been suspended for them from
iron hooks, and even then the ascent was not compassed without blisters.
The hole being
covered again, we found ourselves in a laboratory surrounded by six stately
vestries, to which we were first directed, to pray for the life of the
King and Queen. The twelve musicians who had sat in the ship of the Pyramid
now brought in a fountain, and with it a great oval casket, which, as
I surmised, contained the bodies of the beheaded Kings and Queens. Then,
while they played a most delicate voice of music, in came our Virgin,
bearing the little shrine containing the Moor's head, and followed by
veiled virgins with laurel boughs and torches.
All now stood
round the fountain while our Virgin took from the little shrine the Moor's
head, wrapped in taffeta, and placed it in a vessel, into which were then
poured the essences and tinctures prepared yesterday. It was from the
Moor's head that this solution conceived so great a heat, the virgins
also placing their torches on spikes beneath the vessel, so that the water
driving from the fountain seethed and simpered. Their laurel boughs they
stuck into holes all round the fountain, so that the spray falling on
them dropped into the vessel coloured a deeper yellow.
For two hours
the fountain played, and the distillations dripped into the oval casket
till the bodies it contained were quite dissolved. Then our Virgin had
a golden globe brought in; into this ran a red liquid from the oval casket;
then the globe was carried forth again.
now sat alone for a quarter of an hour or so, till I, perceiving a trampling
overhead, had an eye to my ladder. The cover in the ceiling was lifted;
and up we went by wings, ladders and ropes. It did not a little vex me
that our Virgin could go up another way; yet I could judge we must leave
somewhat for the old man (the Warden) to do.
And indeed, when
we came up to this third conclave, we found the golden globe already suspended
by a strong chain from the centre of the ceiling. The walls of this third
laboratory were nothing but windows alternating with mirrors, so optically
opposed that the sun was everywhere reflected, so that in all quarters
of the room there was nothing but suns.
The heat from
all these artificial refractions beat blindingly upon the golden globe,
till our Virgin judged the desired temperature to have been reached. She
gave orders now for the mirrors to be covered, and, when the globe had
cooled, for us to lift it down and cut it asunder. After much disputation,
this was at last done with a diamond; and when the two halves fell apart,
a great snow-white egg was disclosed, so beautiful that we stood around
it as jocund as if we ourselves had laid it.
As soon as our
Virgin was satisfied that the shell had sufficiently hardened, she carried
the egg from the room, locking the door behind her. What she did abroad
with the egg, I know not; we were again to pause for one quarter of an
hour, till the third hole opened, and we, by means of our instruments,
came up to the fourth floor.
Here we found
a great square copper vessel, filled with silver sand, in which the egg
was placed and warmed over a gentle fire, till, being ready, it was taken
out, but needed no cracking, for the Bird soon freed himself, looking
Our Virgin warned
us to tie him up before we fed him; this we did, setting him on the warm
sand and bringing him the blood of the beheaded Kings and Queens to drink,
whereupon he grew before our eyes, became covered with black feathers,
and bit and scratched so devilishly that, could he have had his will upon
any of us, he would soon have despatched us.
When we brought
him other meat, he grew tamer and more tractable; he moulted his black
feathers and replaced them with snow-white ones. At his third feeding,
his feathers began to be so curiously coloured that I never saw the like
for beauty, and he now behaved himself so friendly with us that, our Virgin
consenting, we released him from captivity.
At dinner we began
to make merry together, spending our time for the most part with our Bird;
after which, our Virgin and our Bird departed from us, and the fifth room
was opened, which we reached after the former manner.
Here we found
our Bird awaiting us, and a cool milky bath prepared for him, in which
he pleasantly sported; as the lamps beneath it made it warmer, we had
enough to do to keep him in the bath, and therefore clapped a cover on,
suffering him to thrust out his head through a hole.
In this heated
bath, the Bird lost all his feathers, which the water consumed turning
blue, and the Bird stepped out as smooth as a new-born babe. The bath
we heated further, till all the water had evaporated, leaving only a blue
stone: this we ground to powder, with which we painted the Bird blue all
over, except for his head, which remained white.
Again our Virgin
departed with her Bird, and we ascended through the ceiling to the sixth
conclave, where we found a little altar set up in the middle of the chamber,
and on it the book, the lighted taper, the heavenly globe, the chimingclock,
the crystal fountain, and the skull with its white serpent, every way
like those in the King's hall.
The Bird stood
on the altar, and drank from the blood-red fountain, then pecked at the
white serpent till she bled. The heavenly globe turned till a certain
conjunction was reached, then a second, then a third; after each conjunction
the clock chimed.
Then the poor
Bird himself submissively laid down his neck upon the book, and willingly
suffered his head to be smitten off by one of us, thereto chosen by lot.
Howbeit, he yielded not one drop of blood till he was opened on the breast,
and then the blood spun out so fresh and clear as if it had been a fountain
of rubies. His death went to the heart of us, yet we might well judge
that a naked bird would stand us in little stead. We assisted the Virgin
to burn the body (together with a little tablet hanging by) to ashes,
with fire kindled at the little taper, and to lay them in a box of cypress
Here I cannot
conceal what a trick I, with three more, was served.
"My Lords," said
the Virgin, "we are here in the sixth room, and have only one more before
us. I have found among you these four (pointing to me and three others)
lazy and sluggish laborators, and I purpose that they shall be excluded
from the seventh and most glorious action."
The Virgin so
well knew how to keep her countenance that the water of our grief soon
ran over our baskets. The musicians were fetched and with cornets blew
us out of doors with such derision that they themselves could scarcely
sound for laughing. But as soon as we were come out of the door, they
bid us be of good cheer, and follow them up the winding stairs to the
eighth floor under the roof, where we found the old man standing.
He received us
friendly, and congratulated us that we were hereto chosen by the Virgin;
when he had understood the fright we conceived, his belly was ready to
burst with laughing that we had taken such good fortune so heinously.
"Hence," said he, "my dear sons, learn that man never knoweth how well
God intendeth him".
Our Virgin, running
in with her cypress box of the Bird's ashes, also joined in the laughter;
and we four were set to work under the direction of the old Warden, moistening
the ashes to a dough with prepared water, heating this paste, then casting
it into two little moulds.
While this was
cooling, we peeped through a crevice in the floor at our fellows, now
busy on the storey below, where we saw them industriously blowing at furnaces,
and making gold, imagining they were herein wonderfully preferred before
When we opened
our two little moulds, we found two bright and almost transparent little
images, angelically fair babes, a male and a female, each being but four
inches long. These we laid on two little satin cushions, and beheld them
till we were almost besotted upon so exquisite an object.
Under the old
man's direction, we let the blood from the Bird's breast fall drop by
drop from a golden cup into their mouths, till they had reached their
perfect full growth, with curled gold-yellow hair. The old man commanded
us to lay them on a long table covered with white velevet and to cover
them with white taffeta, which, because of their unspeakable beauty, it
went hard with us to do.
Our Virgin now
entered with two curious garments, which could have been crystal but that
they were gentle and not transparent. These she laid upon a table; and
while her musicians played, she and the old man performed many ceremonial
gestures directed towards the roof. This was arched into seven hemispheres,
and at the top of the middle and highest of these I spied a small aperture.
Now entered six
virgins, each bearing a large trumpet, wreathed with a green, glittering,
burning material. The old man took them one by one, placing them one after
another on the mouths of the two sleepers, with their wider ends directed
to the roof. Along each of the funnels thus made, I saw a bright stream
of flame shoot down from the aperture in the roof, and enter the sleeping
image, which immediately twinkled its eyes though scarcely stirring.
Next the two sleepers
were neatly laid by each other in a travelling bed, where they continued
to sleep behind drawn curtains. Meanwhile, we sat very still, attending
when our married couple would awake; and thus about half an hour was spent.
Then Cupid flew in, and tormented them till they waked, which happened
to them with very great amazement, for they imagined that they had slept
from the hour in which they were beheaded; and when our Virgin had clothed
them in their new garments, all present kissed their hands, and escorted
them down the stairs and out to the royal ship, in which, with Cupid and
a train of virgins, they set sail for home.
At supper the
Virgin brought us again to our former companions, where we were to carry
ourselves as if we had truly been in a lamentable condition. At this supper
the old lord was with us; I learned most by this old lord, and if men
would but take notice of his procedure, things would not so often and
the old lord led us into his closet of rareties where we saw such wonderful
productions of Nature and other things which man's wit, in imitation of
Nature had invented, that we needed a year sufficiently to survey them.
Thus we spent a good part of the night by candle-light.
We then retired
to handsome bed-chambers; and I, being weary with continual labour, had
good rest, continuing in one dream from eleven of the clock till eight
the next morning.
the morning of the seventh and last day, we met in the nethermost vault
of the Tower, and were given habits entirely yellow, together with our
golden fleeces, for we were still dressed in our black funeral garb.
the old lord presented each one of us with a golden medal, bearing on
one side the words, "Art is the priestess of Nature," and on the other,
"Nature is the daughter of Time". So we went forth to the sea, where our
ships lay richly equipped. The ships were twelve in number, six of ours
and six of the old lord's; but he betook himself to us in our ship, where
we were all together. In the first the musicians seated themselves, of
which the old lord had a great number. Our flags were the twelve celestial
signs, and we sat in Libra. The sea was so calm that it was a singular
pleasure to sail; but that which surpassed all was the old man's discourse,
who so well knew how to pass away our time with wonderful histories that
I could have been content to sail with him all my life long.
After two hours'
sailing we passed from the sea into the narrow strait, and out of this
into the lake, which we found covered with 500 ships which had sailed
from the Castle to meet us, led by one sparkling with gold and precious
stones, in which sat the young King and Queen, on whose behalf Old Atlas
The rest of our
companions were in a huge amazement whence this King should have arisen,
for they imagined no other than that they must again awaken him. We carried
ourselves as if it seemed strange to us, too. After Atlas's oration, out
steps our old man, wishing the King and Queen all happiness and increase,
after which he delivered a curious small casket, but what was in it I
know not; it was delivered to the custody of Cupid, who hovered between
So we sailed on
a good time together, till we arrived at another shore, near the first
gate at which I first entered.
us there; and when we disembarked, the old lord and I rode with the young
King, each of us bearing a snow-white ensign with a Red Cross; I, indeed,
was made use of because of my age, for we both had long grey beards and
hair. I had fastened my tokens round my hat, of which the young King soon
took notice, and demanded if I were he who at the gate had redeemed these
tokens. I answered yes in the most humble manner; but he laughed on me,
saying there henceforth needed no ceremony, I was HIS Father.
When we reached
the first Portal, the Guardian in his sky-blue habit awaited us, a supplication
in his hand; this he delivered to me, begging me to use my good offices
in lying it before the King. On the way to the second Portal, therefore,
I asked the King about this Guardian, and he replied that he was a very
famous astrologer; but having on a time committed a fault against Venus
by beholding her in her bed of rest, this punishment was imposed upon
him, that he should so long wait at the gate till someone should release
him from thence.
"May he then be
released?" I asked.
And the King replied.
"Yes; if another commits the same transgression, he must take his place."
This word went
to my heart; conscience convinced me that I was the offender, yet I held
my peace, and delivered the supplication. As soon as the King had read
it, he was mightily terrified; and as soon as we alighted, he called for
Old Atlas to come to him in a little closet, and showed him the writing.
Atlas made no long tarrying, but rode out to the Portal to take better
cognisance of the matter.
It was now announced
that after supper each of us could crave some boon of the King. Meanwhile
the King and Queen began to play together a game not unlike chess, with
the virtues and vices one against another, where it might be observed
with what plots the vices lay in wait for the virtues, and how to re-
encounter them. During the game in comes Atlas again, and makes his report
in private; yet I blushed all over, for my conscience gave me no rest.
The King now handed
me the supplication to read. In it the Guardian of the First Portal reported
that his observations of the stars revealed that one of the King's guests
had uncovered Venus; thus the time had come when he himself should be
released from his office, and he beggged to be permitted to be present
at that evening's banquet in the hope of discovering his successor.
The King accordingly
sent to invite his to join us; and as we all sat at table he made his
strict survey. Then certain curious chairs were placed in a circle, in
which we, toggether with the King and Queen, both their old men, and the
ladies and virgins, were to sit. A handsome page then announced that the
King, in recognition of our services, had elected each of us Knight of
the Golden Stone, and required us to make these five vows:
- To ascribe
our Order only to God and His handmaid, Nature.
- To abominate
all whoredom, and not defile our Order with such vices.
- To use our
talents to assist all that have need of them.
- Not to strive
for wordly pride and high authority.
- Not to wish
to live longer than God would have us.
At this last
article we could not choose but laugh.
We were now, with
due ceremony, installed Knights, and conducted in procession to a little
chapel, where I hung up my golden fleece and my hat. And because everyone
was to write his name there, I writ thus:
wisdom is to know nothing.
Brother Christian Rosenkreutz.
Knight of the Golden Stone.
The King then
retired to a little closet, to which each of us was to come in private,
to request our boons. I decided, even at my own peril, to release the
Guardian of the First Portal from his office; so, when I was called in,
I made a full confession.
The King wondered
mightily at this, and wished me to step aside a little; and as soon as
I was called in again, Atlas declared to me that it was grievious to the
King's Majesty that I, whom he loved aboved others, was fallen into such
a mischance; yet, because it was not possible for him to transgress his
ancient usages, the other must be released and I placed in his stead.
Nor was my own release to be hoped for till the marriage feast of his
future son. This sentence near cost me my life; yet I took courage, and
related how this gatekeeper had been my benefactor, having bestowed a
token on me by whose assistance I had stood upon the scale, and so had
been made partaker of all the honour and joy already received. Hereupon
the good man was pronounced free, and I imagined no other than that I
must finish my life under the gate.
The ring of office
was now placed upon my finger, and the King embraced me, telling me this
was the last time I would see him in this manner, from all of which I
understood that in the morning I, most wretched man, had nobody to show
me the way, who should approach me but the two august old lords -- Atlas
and the Warden of the Tower -- who conducted me into a glorious lodging,
in which stood three beds, and each of us lay in one of them.
* * *
At this point
the narrative breaks off abruptly in the middle of a sentence; and this
colophon is added:
are wanting about two leaves in quarto; and he (the author hereof) whereas
he imagined he must in the morning be door-keeper, returned home."