Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (with apologies to Johnny Marks and Robert L. May)

Herken alle & here telle

Off bestes fleiyng wyþ golde & belle:

Þe bestes þat spreden Crystenmasse chere

Knawen bi alle as rayn-dere.

 

Þis tale ys offe a rayn-dere briȝt,

Rudolphus þe Rede Nase he hiȝt.

Hys nase schonne lyk þe sonne.

Lyvede he yn times bi-gonne.

 

Rudolphus þe dere off rede nase

Watz elenge, for þat hys nase glōs.

Þe oþir dere lykede hymn at

& yn þer gamen he watz forȝat.

 

Whilom on Chrystenmasse even

Þer watz a nyȝt blakke as a sweven.

Sainte Nicholas he xulde nat see

& hadde moche need forto fleie.

 

Nicholas sayde, “Rudolphus mīn,

Yhaf moche nede off talentys þin.

Off a lyȝt Yhaf most need.

Wiltow þe oþir dere lede?”

 

So Rudolphus braue & bolde

Bedekkyd hym yn rede & golde

& wyþ hys nase schynynge briȝt

Pullyd þe gyftes ynto þe nyȝt.

 

Þenne alle þe deres yn þe place

Loffede hym wyþ muchel grace.

“Rudolphus”, þe rayn-dere didde saye,

“þou wilt be y-write yn a laye!”

Written 11th December 2017

 

deer

Detail from London, British Library, Arundel MS 157, f. 45v dated c. 1240

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