Melibee's Tale: 24
... thise thinges thou shalt chese the beste, and weyve alle othere thinges. Thanne shaltow considere of what rote is engendred the matere of thy conseil, and what fruit it may conceyve and engendre. Thou shalt eek considere alle thise causes, fro whennes they been sprongen. And whan ye han examined your conseil as I have seyd, and which partie is the bettre and more profitable, and hast approved it by manye wyse folk and olde; thanne shaltou considere, if thou mayst parfourne it and maken of it a good ende. For certes, resoun wol nat that any man sholde biginne a thing, but-if he mighte parfourne it as him oghte. Ne no wight sholde take up-on hym so hevy a charge that he mighte nat bere it. For the proverbe seith: "he that to muche embraceth, distreyneth litel." And Catoun seith: "assay to do swich thing as thou hast power to doon, lest that the charge oppresse thee so sore, that thee bihoveth to weyve thing that thou hast bigonne." And if so be that thou be in doute, whether thou mayst parfourne a thing or noon, chese rather to suffre than biginne. And Piers Alphonce seith: "if thou hast might to doon a thing of which thou most repente thee, it is bettre 'nay' than 'ye';" this is to seyn, that thee is bettre holde thy tonge stille, than for to speke. Thanne may ye understonde by strenger resons, that if thou hast power to parfourne a werk of which thou shalt repente, thanne is it bettre that thou suffre than biginne. Wel seyn they, that defenden every wight to assaye any thing of which he is in doute, whether he may parfourne it or no. And after, whan ye han examined your conseil as I have seyd biforn, and knowen wel that ye may parfourne youre emprise, conferme it thanne sadly til it be at an ende.