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The oration of Robert Fitzstephans made vnto his companions and souldiors.

WHEN Dermon Mac Morogh had ended his speech, Robert Fitzstephans calleth his companie togither, & thus he speaketh vnto them. "Ye lustie yoong men and my companions in warres, which haue abiden with me in manie perrls; & yet still of noble minds & valiant courages: if we would now consider with our selues, what we are, vnder what capteine, and wherefore we doo aduenture and attempt these great enterprises, no doubt we shall excell in our woonted valiantnesse, and good fortune shall be on our side. We first came and descended from the (1) Troians, and since are of the French bloud and race: of the one we haue these our noble and valiant minds, and of the other the vse and experience in feats of armes: wherfore being thus descended of noble progenie by two maner of waies and in two respects; as we be now well armed and appointed, so let vs also be of valiant minds and Iustie courages: and then no doubt this rascall and naked people shall neuer be able to resist nor withstand vs.

"Besdies you sée and know how that at home, partlie by the subtill and craftie dealings of our owne cousines and kinsmen, and partlie by the secret malice and deuises of our familiars and acquaintances, we are béereft & spoiled both of our countrie and patrimonie. And now we are come hither, not as gréedie crauers for large stipends, nor yet as couetous prollers for gaine and lucre: but onlie in respect and consideration to haue and inioie the lands & townes to vs, and to our heires after vs, offered and promised. We are not come hither like pirats or théeues to rob and spoile, but as faithfull friends, to recouer and to restore this noble and liberall gentleman to that his patrimonie, whereof he is spoiled and dispossessed. He it is that hath allured and flocked vs hither; he it is that loueth our nation: and he it is who purposeth to plant and settle vs and our heires in this Ile. And peraduenture by these meanes the whole land, which is now diuided into fiue prouinces or portions, maie be deduced and brought into one, and the same in time be wholie vnto vs and our heires: if that by our valiantnesse and prowesse the victorie be gotten, and Mac Morogh by our seruice, meanes, and industrie be restored, and then the whole dominion to vs and to our heires for euer to be reserued.

"O how great were then our honor & glorie! yea so great, that with the perils of our bodies, losse of our liues, and the dangers of death, it is to be wished for, sought, & aduentured. For why should we be affraid? and what is death I praie you? Is it anie other than a short delaie or distance of time, & as it were a short sléepe betwéene this transitorie life and the life eternall to come? What is death (I saie) but a short passage from vaine and transitorie things to perpetuall and euerlasting ioies? And certeine it is we must all once die: for it is that ineuitable destinie, which is common to all men, and can be eschewed of no man: for be we idle, and doo nothing worthie of perpetuall fame and memorie; or be we well occupied, whereof insueth praise and honor: yet die shall we. Then the matter being so, let them be affraied of death, who when they die, all things die with them: but let not them shrinke nor be dismaied, whose vertue and fame shall neuer die but liue for euer. Wherefore ye worthie men, who are enoblished for your valiantnes and famous for your vertues, let vs with bold minds and good courages giue the onset vpon our enimies, that in vs our noble race & progenie be not stained, but that either by a glorious victorie, or a famous death, we doo atchiue to perpetuall fame and honor."

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