The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
IMEV 595
Child of discipline incline to me thy ear
The Twelve Gates or The Compende of Alkemye by George Ripley, 1471, including Preface, Twelve Gates, Recapitulation and Admonition, sometimes with a dedicatory prologue to Henry IV — in rhyme royal and couplets
Note: Cf. 680, 5320; Singer (1928), 810; Ringler Jr. (1992), TM 577.
Author(s): George Ripley
Title(s): The Twelve Gates; The Compende of Alkemye
Subjects: alchemy; Edward IV, work dedicated to
Versification: — seven-line, two-line — ababbcc, aa
Bibliographic Ghosts: London, British Library Sloane 299: (preface only): deleted by Robbins and Cutler (1965)

Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 1445 (SC 7630), ff. 1-36v
First Lines:
O onorable lord and most victorious knight
In [ ] and fortune aboundantlye endued…
Last Lines:
…Praysing without ceasyng his gloryous maiestie
Within his kingdom he graunt vs to se
Note: Includes the prefixed address to Edward IV; subtitles as follows: ‘Callcinacion (f. 7); ‘Here endith the xij gates and here folowith the Recapytulacyone’ (f. 33); ‘Recapitulacione’ (f. 33v); ‘Aadmonycion’ (f. 35).
Attributed Author: The Compounde of george Riple (f. 1)
Attributed Title: The Compounde of george Riple (f. 1); Here endith the xij gates and here folowith the Recapytulacyone (f. 33)
2.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 1479 (SC 7643), ff. 1-30v
First Lines:
Here beginnyth the compende of Alkamy
Made by a chanon of brydlyngton…
Last Lines:
…praysing with out seasing his glorius mageste
which he in his kingdome vs gravnt for to se
Attributed Title: The philosophers treasuer (f. 1)
3.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 1485, Part III.ii (SC 7652), Part III ii, ff. 3-46
First Lines:
In the beginninge when God made all of noughte
a globous matter & darke vnder confusion…
Last Lines:
…praysinge without ceasinge his glorious maiestye
which he in his kingdome grante vs for to see
Note: Imperfect.
Attributed Author: Sir George Ripplye channon of Brillington (f. 3); …Sir George Ripley Chanon of Bridlington compiled by him Anno Domini 1471 (f. 46)
Attributed Title: The 12 gates of Sir George Ripplye channon of Brillington, otherwise called his Compound of Alchymye (f. 3); Heere endeth the compounde of Alchumye called the xij gates of Sir George Ripley Chanon of Bridlington compiled by him Anno Domini 1471 (f. 46)
4.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 1486, Part I (SC 7653), ff. 49v-71v
First Lines:
HEr begynnyth þe compownd off Alkamy
made by a chanon of bryglyngton…
Last Lines:
…medyll not with mercury precypytate
nether with Inperfyȝte bodys iubyfycate…
Note: Imperfect at end due to loss of folios.
Attributed Author: HEr begynnyth þe compownd off Alkamy made by a chanon of bryglyngton (f. 49v)
Attributed Title: HEr begynnyth þe compownd off Alkamy made by a chanon of bryglyngton (f. 49v)
5.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Ashmole 1490 (SC 7010), ff. 114-136v
First Lines:
Childe of this discipline Incline to thin Eare
And herke to my doctrine wyth all thy diligence…
Last Lines:
…praisinge with out ceasinge his glorious maiesti
which he in his kingdom vs graunt for to see
Attributed Author: …by a Channon of Briglington (f. 114)
Attributed Title: Heare Beginne the Book off Alcamie And the compounde therof made by a Channon of Briglington (f. 114); Explicit tractatus philosophie qui vocatur Alkamie. Anno 1472. 1520. And laste newe written by Simon Forman 1584 the 31 of December {Jupiter} (f. 136v)
6.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library e Musaeo 63 (SC 3652), ff. 41-65
First Lines:
Childe of this discipline inclyne to me thinne eare
And harken my doctyne [sic] withe all Dillygence…
Last Lines:
…praysinge with out Cessing his glorious maiestrie
which he in his kingdome vs graunte for to se
Attributed Author: george Riple (f. 41)
Attributed Title: Here begynithe the Compende of Alkamie made by A Channon of Bridlington… Sir george Riple (f. 41)
7.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 121 (SC 14614), ff. 35v-69v
First Lines:
Childe of this discepline incline to me thine eare
and harken vnto my doctrine with all thie dilligence…
Last Lines:
…praisinge without ceasinge his glorious maiestye
which he in his kingdome graunte vs for to see
Note: Post-medieval transcript.
Attributed Title: Here begeneth the Compounde of Alcamye made by acanon of Bridlingtoun … georg Riplye… (f. 35v)
8.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 182 (SC 14674), ff. 2-36v
First Lines:
Childe off this discypline enclyne to thyne eare
And harken to my doctryne with all thy diligence…
Last Lines:
… praysinge without sesynge his glorious maiestie
which hee in his kingdome vs grant for to see
Attributed Author: a Canon of briglington … George Rypla (f. 1)
Attributed Title: Here beginneth the Compound of Alcamy made by a Canon of briglington … George Rypla… (f. 1)
9.Source: Oxford, Corpus Christi College 172, ff. 7-41
First Lines:
Here foloweth the compend of Alkymye
made by a channon of Brydlyngton…
Last Lines:
…This [ ] make [ ] Elixer [ ] Aurum potabile
By þe Grace & will of god to whom all honour & glorie
Note: Including Preface, 12 gates, Recapitulation and Admonition / copied from 1591 print of Thomas Orwin, by Raph Rabbards Gentleman; title begins f. 7; text on f. 12v; begins 2 x 8 abababab; then RR, beginning f. 12v‘O lyght incomprehensyble & gloryous magesty / Whose lumynous levys obtayneth our speculacion…’; includes Dedicatory epistle to Henry IV (‘O Honorable Lord & most Victorious Knight…’) at end (ff. 38-41).
10.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ff.2.23, ff. 1v-32
First Lines:
Chylde of Discyplyne inclyne to me thy eare
And [ ] my doctryne wythe all thy dylygens…
Last Lines:
…& that he wyll for one of his Dommes day me ken
And grawnt me in his blydde to reinge for euer with hym Amen
Note: Ends f. 32v with ‘Explicit’ and ‘Finis’ but further text attached on f. 32A and both sides of f. 33, damaged and worn.
Attributed Author: Made by A Chanon of Brydlyngton (f. 1v)
Attributed Title: Here begynnythe the Compende of Alkymye / Made by A Chanon of Brydlyngton… (plus 12 lines as introduction, rhyming ababababcdcdcd, f. 1v)
11.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Kk.6.30, ff. 41v-45v
First Lines:
In the begynnyng when þu mad all thyng of noȝghte
A globous matere & derke vnderconfusioun…
Last Lines:
…lyeke as In blackenes moystour doth hym shewe
Be colouris varyante ay newe & Newer…
Note: Variant; written as prose; ends imperfectly in chapter on ‘congelacyon’.
Attributed Author: George Ripla (f. 41v)
12.Source: Cambridge UK, Gonville & Caius College 399/618, Part II, ff. 1-55v
First Lines:
O honorable And most victorious knight
with great grace and vertewe abondantly endewed…
Last Lines:
…In smelltand smokes þu shalt haue much wo
vneth for sicknesse scarsly þu shalt go…
Note: Includes dedicatory Epistle to Henry IV as prologue (ff. 1-8); ends imperfectly.
Attributed Title: The boke wherin ys conteined the most secrete treasure called alchamie maide by mr George Replay munke of bridlington devided into 12 chapters with his recapitulation & other many profitable experimentis and sentenses of philosophers (Part II, f. i); The compound of Alkamie (f. 8v)
13.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College O.2.16 (1120), Part I, ff. 82-126; 129-131
First Lines:
Chyld of thys dyssyplyne inclyne to me thyne ere
And harkyn my doctryne with also thy dylygence…
Last Lines:
…preasynge withoute Ceasynge hys Gloriose Maiestye
Which he in hys kyngdom Graunte vs for to See
Note: Two portions copied at different times: at tope f. 82v the note, ‘Anno domono 1539 scriptus erat libellus iste vsque ad Spheram’ (i.e., to f. 126v); second portion in 1555 (see author note).
Attributed Author: Quod G.R. 2o die Augusti 1555 (f. 131v)
Attributed Title: Explicit Alkymyce tractatus philoȝophie (f. 131v)
14.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College O.2.16 (1120), Part I, ff. 128-128v
First Lines:
…After all thys I wyll ye vnderstonde
for thy sauegarde what I have don…
Last Lines:
…þe soule of Saturne & also Marthafyce
of which gey tincture I mad to sheu…
Note: Fragment of another copy of Ripley’s work: second copy of six stanzas (numbers 266-271), repeating ff. 129-129v.
15.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College O.5.31 (1312), ff. 27-37v
First Lines:
IN þe begynnyng when gode made all of noȝghte
A globos matere & derke vnder confusyoun…
Last Lines:
…preysyng with ouoȝte sessyng hys gloryouse mageste
Whyche he In hys kyngdome vs graunte for to see
Attributed Author: Quod Georgeus Rypla canonicus de Brydlyngtoun / Cuius anime propicietur deus dicamus omnes (f. 37); …Cuius Rypla georga canonicus quis auctor erat…(f. 37v)
Attributed Title: Explycyt Alkimice tractatus philosophie Cuius Rypla georga canonicus quis auctor erat m. quadragentes septuagesima vniusque teneratis annis qui scriptus compositus que fuit auctori preve prece queso Innanis Illi purgamen lene prius vitam sit ut amen (f. 37v)
16.Source: London, British Library Harley 367, ff. 55-75
First Lines:
O hyghe in compdensybell & gloryvs in mageste
Whos lyght bemes assendit howr owr speculasion…
Last Lines:
…praysynge with out sesynge his gloryouse maieste
whiche he in his kyngdome vs graunt for to se
Note: Variant version. To left of first few lines, in space left for initial, a later hand adds, ‘Written by John Stow in his owne hand writene’ (f. 55); in second line ‘howr’ written and crossed through before ‘owr’ (f. 55)
Attributed Author: Ripley (f. 75)
Attributed Title: Explicit alkimee tractatus philosophie Ciuis Ripley […] erit M quadramgentis sextuaginta vnus qui […]antri Ann[…] fuit autore lector parte queso proci[…] […]amen […]amen […]setinit amen Hic autor prosequesturesit […] prote […]ise […]diuitras dat corporeas transp[…]aces […] (f. 75)
17.Source: London, British Library Harley 853, f. 1
18.Source: London, British Library Sloane 3809, ff. 4-34v
First Lines:
…O hygh Incomparabyl and gloryus maieste…
Note: Begins imperfectly.
19.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales MS 734B, pp. 27-?
20.Source: Appleby Castle, Lord Hothfield [on deposit at Leeds, Yorkshire Archaeological Society DD 121/109], pp. 1-12
First Lines:
…It is more ne[ ]re in sum thinge then in som
therfore take [h]ede what I to the wright
Lor and knowlege neuer ys the com
yet thou shalt not ine yt wight…
Last Lines:
…a temperiment not so thicke as the body is
nor so thin as watter withouten miss…
Note: Fragment of 74 stanzas: begins in 12th verse of Preface and ends in penultimate verse of 4th Gate; missing 3rd folio (between pp. 4 and 5); with extensive marginal glosses and notes in English by the scribe.
21.Source: Edinburgh, Edinburgh University Library La.III.164 [olim Laing 164], pp. 3-19
First Lines:
Chyld of þis discipline incline to me thi ere
and herkyn to my doctrine with alle þi diligence
These wordis of wysdome in mynde þu bere…
Last Lines:
…Preysinge withowte cessinge hys gloryouse mageste
Whech he in his kyndom vs graunt for to be
22.Source: London, John Scott (present location unknown)
Brydges, Sir Samuel Egerton. Censura Literaria. 10 vols. London: Longman, 1805-09; 2nd ed., 1815: 8.319-21 (preface only).
23.Source: Longleat, Marquess of Bath MS 178
24.Source: Petworth House, Lord Leconfield MS 97 [sold 23 Apr. 1928, lot 7]
25.Source: Southampton, Southampton Central Library/City Record Office SC15/97, pp. 1-30
26.Source: Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Library Codex 111 [formerly Smith 4], ff. 10v-30v
First Lines:
O honorable lorde & moste victoriouse knight
With grace & fortune aboundantly endewed…
Last Lines:
…praysinge withowte seasinge his gloriouse maiestie
With he in his kingdome vs graunte for to see
Note: Ripley’s 12 Gates, include. Introductory lines, Preface, 12 Gates, Recapitulation and Admonition, in rhyme royal; preface thirty 8-line stanzas, ababbcbc.
Attributed Author: George Ripley (ff. 10v, 13)
Attributed Title: George Ripley vnto kinge Edwarde þe 4th (f. 10v); George Ripley Chanon Regular of Brillington Intituled his twelve gates (f. 13)

Print Witnesses:
1.Source: Ripley, George, [Twelve Gates], Rabbards, 1591
Note: Further prints by Cassel 1649, etc.
Ashmole, Elias. Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum. London: J. Grimond, 1652: 117-93; repr. Holmyard (1928).