Chaucer’s Retraction

From The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer

Retr 1081 Now preye I to hem alle that herkne this litel tretys or rede,
Retr 1081A that if ther be any thyng in it that liketh hem,
Retr 1081B that therof they thanken oure Lord Jhesu Crist, of whom al wit and al goodnesse.
Retr 1082 And if ther be any thyng that displese hem, I preye hem that they arrette it to the defaute
Retr 1082A of myn unkonnynge and nat to my wyl, that wolde ful fayn seyd bettre if I hadde had konnynge.
Retr 1083 For oure book seith, “Al that is writen is writen for doctrine,”
Retr 1083A and that is myn entente.
Retr 1084 Wherfore I biseke yow mekely, for the mercy of God,
Retr 1084A that ye preye for me that Crist have mercy on me and me my giltes;
Retr 1085 and namely of my translacions and enditynges of worldly vanitees, the whiche I revoke in my retracciouns:
Retr 1086 as is the book of Troilus; the book also of Fame;
Retr 1086A the book of the XXV. Ladies; the book of the Duchesse;
Retr 1086B the book of Seint Valentynes day of the Parlement of Briddes; the tales of Caunterbury, thilke that sownen into synne;
Retr 1087 the book of the Leoun; and many another book, if they were in my remembrance, and many a song
Retr 1087A and many a leccherous lay, that Crist for his grete mercy foryeve me the synne.
Retr 1088 But of the translacion of Boece de Consolacione, and othere bookes of legendes of seintes, and omelies, and moralitee, and devocioun,
Retr 1089 that thanke I oure Lord Jhesu Crist and his blisful Mooder, and alle the seintes of hevene,
Retr 1090 bisekynge hem that they from hennes forth unto my lyves ende sende me grace to biwayle my giltes and to studie
Retr 1090A to the salvacioun of my soule, and graunte me grace of verray penitence, confessioun and satisfaccioun to doon in this present lyf,
Retr 1091 thurgh the benigne grace of hym that is kyng of kynges and preest over alle preestes,
Retr 1091A that boghte us with the precious blood of his herte,
Retr 1092 so that I may been oon of hem at the day of doom that shulle be saved.
Retr 1092A Qui cum Patre et Spiritu Sancto vivit et regnat Deus per omnia secula. Amen.