The Masterpiece Library of Short Stories: The Thousand Best Complete Tales of All Times and All Countries - Vol. 7/8

The Masterpiece Library of Short Stories: The Thousand Best Complete Tales of All Times and All Countries - Vol. 7/8

Read FREE!

The Masterpiece Library of Short Stories: The Thousand Best Complete Tales of All Times and All Countries - Vol. 7/8

The Masterpiece Library of Short Stories: The Thousand Best Complete Tales of All Times and All Countries - Vol. 7/8

Read FREE!

Excerpt

A welshman dwelling in a wild place in Wales came to his Curate in the time of Lent and was confessed ; and when his confession was in manner at the end, the Curate asked him whether he had any other thing to say that grieved his conscience, which, sore abashed, answered no word a great while.

At last, by exhortation of his ghostly father, he said that there was one thing in his mind that greatly grieved his conscience, which he was ashamed to utter, for it was so grievous that he trowed God would never forgive him.

To whom the Curate answered and said that God’s mercy was above all, and bade him not despair in the mercy of God, for, whatsoever it was, if he were repentant, God would forgive him.

And so, by long exhortation, at the last he showed it, and said thus :

“Sir, it happened once, that as my wife was making a cheese on a Friday I would have said whether it had been salt or fresh, and took a little of the whey in my hand and put it in my mouth, and, or I was ware, part of it went down my throat against my will, and so I brake my fast.”

To whom the Curate said, “If there be none other thing, I warrant God shall forgive thee.”

So when he had well comforted him with the mercy of God the Curate prayed him to answer a question and to tell him truth.

The Curate said that there were robberies and murders done nigh the place where he dwelt, and divers men found slain, and asked him whether he were consenting to any of them.

To whom he answered and said “Yes” ; and said he was party to many of them, and did help to rob and to slay divers of them.

Then the Curate asked him why he did not confess him thereof.

The Welshman answered and said he took it for no sin, for it was a custom among them that when any booty came of any rich mer-

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