Enjoying the Shepherd’s Calendar again (Spenser really does love archaisms!) and came across this in the February eclogue:
So longe haue I listned to thy speche,
That graffed to the ground is my breache:
My hartblood is welnigh frorne I feele,
And my galage growne fast to my heele
Galage is glossed by E.K. (the commentator on the work, who is probably Spenser himself) as ‘a startuppe or clownish shoe’. Startup is in OED defined as a kind of high shoe or soft boot, often associated with rustics, but of galage I can find no trace. Next stop was a Chaucer glossary (Spenser idolized him and borrowed many terms from him) but no sign there either. In fact the only other instance I can find is later on in the Calendar in September where it’s glossed again as a shoe. I wondered briefly about galligaskins, but of course they’re hose rather than shoes. Any help? I keep thinking I’m missing something obvious, which means I probably am.