The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
DIMEV 3237
IMEV 1982
NIMEV 1982
Lord what is this world weal
On the evils of the times and practical advice for amendment — twelve 8-line stanzas or twenty-two cross-rhymed quatrains
Title(s): ‘Gode rule ys out of remembrauns’
Subjects: evils of the time; precepts; advice; transitoriness, of world; poverty; money, use of
Versification: — four-line, eight-line — abab, ababbcbc

Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 36 (SC 14530), ff. 2v-3v
First Lines:
LOrd what is thys world wele
Rychesse reule and rych aray …
Last Lines:
…þis wolde seruice you both and me
To be ensample of good gouernaunce
Brown, Carleton Fairchild, ed. Religious Lyrics of the XVth Century. Oxford: Clarendon, 1939: 263-6.
Cords, Rose. “Fünf mittelenglische Gedichte aus den Handschrifts Rawlinson Poetry 36 und Rawlinson C.86.” Archiv für das Studium der neueren Sprachen und Literaturen 135 (1916): 292-302: 294-6.
2.Source: London, British Library Harley 5396, ff. 290-291v
Note: 11 stanzas.
Wright, Thomas, and James Orchard Halliwell-Phillipps, eds. Reliquiae Antiquae. 2 vols. London: Smith, 1845: 1.73-5.
3.Source: London, British Library Royal 18 C.II, f. 2v
Man be auised or [th]ou begyne
That thow haue no nede for to pleyne
And loke what a state þou standyst in
ffor pouerte is a ful priuy peyn

ffor what thynge ys to a man more greuous
then sodeynly from man hod to fall
In pride ys lytyll gouernans sympyll gouernans
There as pouerte ys steward of halle
Note: Two quatrains, second half of stanza 4 followed by second half of stanza 2.
Furnivall, Frederick James. “Pieces from Manuscripts, No. II.” Notes and Queries 4th ser. 2 (1868): 125: 125.
4.Source: London, British Library Addit. 60577 [Winchester Anthology], ff. 65v-66v
First Lines:
A lorde what ys thys worldes wele
Rychesse revell or grete araye…
Last Lines:
…That ȝe may haue some stuffe in store
with Inne your berne when ȝe haue sowe
Note: Omits lines 89-96.
Wilson, Edward. “Introduction.” The Winchester Anthology. A Facsimile of British Library Additional Manuscript 60577. With an account of the music by Iain Fenlon. Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1981: no. 131.

Print Witnesses:
1.Source: STC 21499. Certaine Worthye Manuscript Poems of Great Antiquitie, ed. J. S[tow?], R. Robinson f. R. D[exter], 1597 , sigs. F.5-F.6v
Note: 71 lines, not divided into stanza.
Attributed Title: The Way to Thrift (sig. F.5)
Gibbs, Henry Hucks, ed. The Hystorie of the Moste Noble Knight Plasidas and other rare Pieces, from the Pepysian Library at Magdalene College, Cambridge. Roxburghe Club. 96. London: J. B. Nichols and Sons, 1873: 173-5.