"Thenne late" has got me confused of the Sentence "Thenne late euery man of what condicion he be...
'Then [probably, depending on context. = 'so'] let everyone, regardless of status...'. We use 'condition' today more to refer to physical condition (a person might be 'fit', a book might be 'dog-eared'...), but Caxton (and his contemporaries) used it to refer to social standing.
The typesetter, in writing 'late' for 'let' was probable betraying his local dialect; but in fact, as this dates from the period of the Great Vowel Shift (about 200 years of chaos) there was no guessing what he'd put.
Last edited by BobK; 21-May-2010 at 14:37.
Reason: Fix typo
Thankyou BobK for a succinct and correct answer...it put me on the right track Re:Thenne "late" euery man...Yes, late=let.
from "leten" to let [ME] Then back to [Old English] laeten(lŠten)to allow,let....Then the conjuguation of laeten in the subjunctive was my elusive "late"meaning let ....:) Thanks again,I was too fixated on "late" being "of late(edition)" to see the forest for the trees...