The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
DIMEV 5510
IMEV 3491
NIMEV 3491
The true process of English policy
The Libel of English Policy, the ‘B’ Text, 2nd version — in couplets, with a Prologue of seven stanzas rhyme royal and Envoy of fifteen lines
Note: Non-source-specific editions Hakluyt (1598); Benham (1922); Selden (1635), 261. For the ‘A’ Text, see 5508; for the ‘B’ Text, 1st version, see 5509.
Title(s): The Libel of English Policy
Subjects: advice, to magistrates; envoys; political verse; merchants; prologues
Versification: — two-line, seven-line — aa, ababbcc

Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: London, British Library Harley 78, ff. 35-52v
First Lines:
The trewe processe off Englysshe polecy
As towarde to kepe the Realme in Reste…
Last Lines:
…Also praye we to oure blessyd lady moder & mayde
Ynglonde to prosper sokoure & ayde
Note: B Text (2); middle portion, possibly supplied from another manuscript but certainly written by a different scribe, on ff. 38-43v (…That ys to say fflemynges ffull of gyle (38)…bot yff englyssh men thedyr dresthe [ ] way (43v)….
Attributed Title: Here begynnyth the prologge off the Byble off Englysshe polecy Exortynge all yngelond to kepe the See Enyron and Namely to kepe the Narowe See Showynge what proffyte comyth þer off and also worsshyppe to the Realme off Englond and specyally to all Englusshe men Amen (f. 35); Thys Endyth the trewe [ ] fre men [ ] (f. 52v)
2.Source: London, British Library Harley 78, ff. 53-53v
First Lines:
…A good shippe and entred into hit
With viij kynges and downe did they sitte…
Last Lines:
…Of moost estate his magnanimite
Like to Edgare and the said Edward…
Note: B Text (2); a single leaf, lines 968-1042.
3.Source: London, British Library Harley 271, ff. 1-25v
First Lines:
The trewe prosses of englysch polecie
Is outward to kepe þe Regne in reste…
Last Lines:
…I offer þe tham to be gracious
To myn excuse farwell my own trete
4.Source: Manchester, John Rylands Library Eng. 955, ff. 3-27
First Lines:
The true possesse of englishe pollesye
of owtter ward to kepe the realme in rest
of our england that no man may deny
The soth to saye it is one of the best…
Last Lines:
…The seconde person in dyvyne ys
He vs assume and brynge vs to hys blysse
Note: Missing portions added to ff. 3-3v and 15v by a sixteenth-century hand, to ff. 6-7v by another sixteenth-century hand; ‘hony soit qui mal y pance’ on fol. 1 by a fifteenth-century hand; note bottom f. 27, ‘presented to þe L. Archb. Chicheley by John Lidgate anno domini 1436’ by a sixteenth-century hand.
Attributed Title: A processe of englishe pollesy touching keeping of the narrow sea (added by a sixteenth-century hand to front cover); The bible of pollicie (f. 1, added by a sixteenth-century hand); A treatise or a lible of englishe pollesie for keping of the narrowe sea what proffet cometh therby what worshipp & preseruation vnto our realme of England (f. 3, by a sixteenth-century hand)
5.Source: Boston, MA, Boston Public Library med. 92 (1519) [olim Gurney], ff. 167v-184v
First Lines:
The trewe processe of englysh policye
As toward to kepe the Regne in Reste
Of Ingeland þat no man may denye
The sooth to say hit is oon the beste…
Last Lines:
…Of high wytteȝ lordes right fameux
To examyne thy dulle Rudytee
I offre the theym to be gracieux
To myn excuse far weel myn owne tretee
Note: MS written in Calais c. 1470 by scribe, V. C. Moris and another hand; owned by ‘William Caston’ and given by him to ‘William Sonnyng’ in 1471; coat of arms of Thomas Wall on f. 1; transcript of the seventeenth century inserted at end of MS.
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the prologe of the byble of Englysh polecie exortyng all Engeland to kepe the see enuiron and namely to kepe the narow se Schewyng what proffit commeth þer of and also worschip to the Royaume of Ingeland & to all Inglysh men (f. 167); Thus endeth the trewe processe of the byble of englysh polycye Exortyng all Ingeland to kepe the see envyron And namely the narow see schewyng what worship and saluacion commeth ther of to the Regne of Engeland (f. 184)