Death and Kings
Eala, hu leas 7 hu unwrest is þysses middaneardes wela! Se þe wæs ærur rice cyng 7 maniges landes hlaford, he næfde þa ealles landes buron seogon fotmæl; 7 se þe wæs hwilon geschrid mid golde 7 mid gimmum, he læg þa oferwrongen mid moldan.
Lo, how transitory and insecure is the wealth of the world! He who was once a powerful king and the lord of many lands, received (in death) no other land but seven feet of it; and he who was once clothed in gold and gems lay then covered with earth.

--- From The Peterborough Chronicles AD 1087
Quoted in Inventing English
Seth Lerer
©2007, Columbia University Press
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