A Collection of Ballads
Andrew Lang

Part 4 out of 5

Amongst them all dwelled a lord
Which was the unthrifty Lord of Lynne.

His father and mother were dead him froe,
And so was the head of all his kinne;
He did neither cease nor blinne
To the cards and dice that he did run.

To drinke the wine that was so cleere!
With every man he would make merry.
And then bespake him John of the Scales,
Unto the heire of Lynne say'd hee,

Sayes "how dost thou, Lord of Lynne,
Doest either want gold or fee?
Wilt thou not sell thy land so brode
To such a good fellow as me?

"For . . I . . " he said,
"My land, take it unto thee;
I draw you to record, my lords all;"
With that he cast him a Gods pennie.

He told him the gold upon the bord,
It wanted never a bare penny.
"That gold is thine, the land is mine,
The heire of Lynne I will bee."

"Heeres gold enough," saithe the heire of Lynne,
"Both for me and my company."
He drunke the wine that was so cleere,
And with every man he made merry.

Within three quarters of a yeare
His gold and fee it waxed thinne,
His merry men were from him gone,
And left himselfe all alone.

He had never a penny left in his purse,
Never a penny but three,
And one was brasse and another was lead
And another was white mony.

"Now well-a-day!" said the heire of Lynne,
"Now well-a-day, and woe is mee!
For when I was the Lord of Lynne,
I neither wanted gold nor fee;

"For I have sold my lands so broad,
And have not left me one penny!
I must go now and take some read
Unto Edenborrow and beg my bread."

He had not beene in Edenborrow
Nor three quarters of a yeare,
But some did give him and some said nay,
And some bid "to the deele gang yee!

"For if we should hang some land selfeer,
The first we would begin with thee."
"Now well-a-day!" said the heire of Lynne,
"Now well-a-day, and woe is mee!

"For now I have sold my lands so broad
That merry man is irke with mee;
But when that I was the Lord of Lynne
Then on my land I lived merrily;

"And now I have sold my land so broade
That I have not left me one pennye!
God be with my father!" he said,
"On his land he lived merrily."

Still in a study there as he stood,
He unbethought him of a bill,
He unbethought him of a bill
Which his father had left with him.

Bade him he should never on it looke
Till he was in extreame neede,
"And by my faith," said the heire of Lynne,
"Then now I had never more neede."

He tooke the bill and looked it on,
Good comfort that he found there;
It told him of a castle wall
Where there stood three chests in feare:

Two were full of the beaten gold,
The third was full of white money.
He turned then downe his bags of bread
And filled them full of gold so red.

Then he did never cease nor blinne
Till John of the Scales house he did winne.
When that he came John of the Scales,
Up at the speere he looked then;

There sate three lords upon a rowe,
And John o' the Scales sate at the bord's head,
And John o' the Scales sate at the bord's head
Because he was the lord of Lynne.

And then bespake the heire of Lynne
To John o' the Scales wife thus sayd hee,
Sayd "Dame, wilt thou not trust me one shott
That I may sit downe in this company?"

"Now Christ's curse on my head," she said,
"If I do trust thee one pennye,"
Then bespake a good fellowe,
Which sate by John o' the Scales his knee,

Said "have thou here, thou heire of Lynne,
Forty-pence I will lend thee,--
Some time a good fellow thou hast beene
And other forty if it need bee."

They drunken wine that was so cleere,
And every man they made merry,
And then bespake him John o' the Scales
Unto the Lord of Lynne said hee;

Said "how doest thou heire of Lynne,
Since I did buy thy lands of thee?
I will sell it to thee twenty better cheepe,
Nor ever did I buy it of thee."

"I draw you to recorde, lords all:"
With that he cast him god's penny;
Then he tooke to his bags of bread,
And they were full of the gold so red.

He told him the gold then over the borde
It wanted never a broad pennye;
"That gold is thine, the land is mine,
And the heire of Lynne againe I will bee."

"Now well-a-day!" said John o' the Scales' wife,
"Well-a-day, and woe is me!
Yesterday I was the lady of Lynne,
And now I am but John o' the Scales wife!"

Says "have thou here, thou good fellow,
Forty pence thou did lend me;
Forty pence thou did lend me,
And forty I will give thee,
I'll make thee keeper of my forrest,
Both of the wild deere and the tame."

But then bespake the heire of Lynne,
These were the words and thus spake hee,
"Christ's curse light upon my crowne
If ere my land stand in any jeopardye!"

Ballad: Gordon Of Brackley

Down Deeside cam Inveraye
Whistlin' and playing,
An' called loud at Brackley gate
Ere the day dawning--
"Come, Gordon of Brackley.
Proud Gordon, come down,
There's a sword at your threshold
Mair sharp than your own."

"Arise now, gay Gordon,"
His lady 'gan cry,
"Look, here is bold Inveraye
Driving your kye."
"How can I go, lady,
An' win them again,
When I have but ae sword,
And Inveraye ten?"

"Arise up, my maidens,
Wi' roke and wi' fan,
How blest had I been
Had I married a man!
Arise up, my maidens,
Tak' spear and tak' sword,
Go milk the ewes, Gordon,
An' I will be lord."

The Gordon sprung up
Wi' his helm on his head,
Laid his hand on his sword,
An' his thigh on his steed,
An' he stooped low, and said,
As he kissed his young dame,
"There's a Gordon rides out
That will never ride hame."

There rode with fierce Inveraye
Thirty and three,
But wi' Brackley were nane
But his brother and he;
Twa gallanter Gordons
Did never blade draw,
But against three-and-thirty
Wae's me! what are twa?

Wi' sword and wi' dagger
They rushed on him rude;
The twa gallant Gordons
Lie bathed in their blude.
Frae the springs o' the Dee
To the mouth o' the Tay,
The Gordons mourn for him,
And curse Inveraye.

"O were ye at Brackley?
An' what saw ye there?
Was his young widow weeping
An' tearing her hair?"
"I looked in at Brackley,
I looked in, and oh!
There was mirth, there was feasting,
But naething o' woe.

"As a rose bloomed the lady,
An' blithe as a bride,
As a bridegroom bold Inveraye
Smiled by her side.
Oh! she feasted him there
As she ne'er feasted lord,
While the blood of her husband
Was moist on his sword.

"In her chamber she kept him
Till morning grew gray,
Thro' the dark woods of Brackley
She shewed him the way.
'Yon wild hill,' she said,
'Where the sun's shining on,
Is the hill of Glentanner,--
One kiss, and begone!'"

There's grief in the cottage,
There's grief in the ha',
For the gude, gallant Gordon
That's dead an' awa'.
To the bush comes the bud,
An' the flower to the plain,
But the gude and the brave
They come never again.

Ballad: Edward, Edward

"Why does your brand sae drop wi' blude,
Edward, Edward?
Why does your brand sae drop wi' blude
And why sae sad gang ye, O?"
"O I hae killed my hawk sae gude,
Mither, mither;
O I hae killed my hawk sae gude,
And I hae nae mair but he, O."

"Your hawk's blude was never sae red,
Edward, Edward;
Your hawk's blude was never sae red,
My dear son, I tell thee, O."
"O I hae killed my red-roan steed,
Mither, mither;
O I hae killed my red-roan steed,
That was sae fair and free, O."

"Your steed was auld, and ye've plenty mair,
Edward, Edward;
Your steed was auld, and ye've plenty mair;
Some ither dule ye dree, O."
"O I hae killed my father dear,
Mither, mither;
O I hae killed my father dear,
Alas, and wae is me, O!"

"And whatten penance will ye dree for that,
Edward, Edward?
Whatten penance will ye dree for that?
My dear son, now tell me, O."
"I'll set my feet in yonder boat,
Mither, mither;
I'll set my feet in yonder boat,
And I'll fare over the sea, O."

"And what will ye do wi' your tow'rs and your ha',
Edward, Edward?
And what will ye do wi' your tow'rs and your ha',
That were sae fair to see, O?"
"I'll let them stand till they doun fa',
Mither, mither;
I'll let them stand till they doun fa',
For here never mair maun I be, O."

"And what will ye leave to your bairns and your wife,
Edward, Edward?
And what will ye leave to your bairns and your wife,
When ye gang ower the sea, O?"
"The warld's room: let them beg through life,
Mither, mither;
The warld's room: let them beg through life;
For them never mair will I see, O."

"And what will ye leave to your ain mither dear,
Edward, Edward?
And what will ye leave to your ain mither dear,
My dear son, now tell me, O?"
"The curse of hell frae me sall ye bear,
Mither, mither;
The curse of hell frae me sall ye bear:
Sic counsels ye gave to me, O!"

Ballad: Young Benjie

Of all the maids of fair Scotland,
The fairest was Marjorie;
And young Benjie was her ae true love,
And a dear true love was he.

And wow but they were lovers dear,
And lov'd full constantlie;
But aye the mair when they fell out,
The sairer was their plea.

And they ha'e quarrell'd on a day,
Till Marjorie's heart grew wae;
And she said she'd chuse another luve,
And let young Benjie gae.

And he was stout and proud-hearted,
And thought o't bitterlie;
And he's gane by the wan moonlight,
To meet his Marjorie.

"Oh, open, open, my true love,
Oh, open and let me in!"
"I darena open, young Benjie,
My three brothers are within."

"Ye lee, ye lee, ye bonnie burd,
Sae loud's I hear ye lee;
As I came by the Louden banks,
They bade gude e'en to me.

"But fare ye weel, my ae fause love,
That I have lov'd sae lang!
It sets ye chuse another love,
And let young Benjie gang."

Then Marjorie turn'd her round about,
The tear blinding her e'e;
"I darena, darena let thee in,
But I'll come down to thee."

Then salt she smil'd, and said to him--
"Oh, what ill ha'e I done?"
He took her in his arms twa,
And threw her o'er the linn.

The stream was strong, the maid was stout,
And laith, laith to be dang;
But ere she wan the Louden banks,
Her fair colour was wan.

Then up bespake her eldest brother--
"Oh, see na ye what I see?"
And out then spake her second brother--
"It is our sister Marjorie!"

Out then spake her eldest brother--
"Oh, how shall we her ken?"
And out then spake her youngest brother--
"There's a honey mark on her chin."

Then they've ta'en the comely corpse,
And laid it on the ground;
Saying--"Wha has kill'd our ae sister?
And how can he be found?

"The night it is her low lykewake,
The morn her burial day;
And we maun watch at mirk midnight,
And hear what she will say."

With doors ajar, and candles light,
And torches burning clear,
The streekit corpse, till still midnight,
They waked, but naething hear.

About the middle of the night
The cocks began to craw;
And at the dead hour of the night,
The corpse began to thraw.

"Oh, wha has done thee wrang, sister,
Or dared the deadly sin?
Wha was sae stout, and fear'd nae dout,
As throw ye o'er the linn?"

"Young Benjie was the first ae man
I laid my love upon;
He was sae stout and proud-hearted,
He threw me o'er the linn."

"Shall we young Benjie head, sister?
Shall we young Benjie hang?
Or shall we pike out his twa gray een,
And punish him ere he gang?"

"Ye maunna Benjie head, brothers,
Ye maunna Benjie hang;
But ye maun pike out his twa gray een.
And punish him ere he gang.

"Tie a green gravat round his neck,
And lead him out and in,
And the best ae servant about your house
To wait young Benjie on.

"And aye at every seven years' end,
Ye'll take him to the linn;
For that's the penance he maun dree,
To scug his deadly sin."

Ballad: Auld Maitland

There lived a king in southern land,
King Edward hight his name;
Unwordily he wore the crown,
Till fifty years were gane.

He had a sister's son o's ain,
Was large of blood and bane;
And afterward, when he came up,
Young Edward hight his name.

One day he came before the king,
And kneel'd low on his knee:
"A boon, a boon, my good uncle,
I crave to ask of thee!

"At our lang wars, in fair Scotland,
I fain ha'e wish'd to be,
If fifteen hundred waled wight men
You'll grant to ride with me."

"Thou shall ha'e thae, thou shall ha'e mae;
I say it sickerlie;
And I myself, an auld gray man,
Array'd your host shall see."

King Edward rade, King Edward ran--
I wish him dool and pyne!
Till he had fifteen hundred men
Assembled on the Tyne.

And thrice as many at Berwicke
Were all for battle bound,
[Who, marching forth with false Dunbar,
A ready welcome found.]

They lighted on the banks of Tweed,
And blew their coals sae het,
And fired the Merse and Teviotdale,
All in an evening late.

As they fared up o'er Lammermoor,
They burn'd baith up and down,
Until they came to a darksome house,
Some call it Leader-Town.

"Wha hauds this house?" young Edward cried,
"Or wha gi'est o'er to me?"
A gray-hair'd knight set up his head,
And crackit right crousely:

"Of Scotland's king I haud my house;
He pays me meat and fee;
And I will keep my gude auld house,
While my house will keep me."

They laid their sowies to the wall,
With mony a heavy peal;
But he threw o'er to them agen
Baith pitch and tar barrel.

With springalds, stanes, and gads of airn,
Amang them fast he threw;
Till mony of the Englishmen
About the wall he slew.

Full fifteen days that braid host lay,
Sieging Auld Maitland keen;
Syne they ha'e left him, hail and feir,
Within his strength of stane.

Then fifteen barks, all gaily good,
Met them upon a day,
Which they did lade with as much spoil
As they you'd bear away.

"England's our ain by heritage;
And what can us withstand,
Now we ha'e conquer'd fair Scotland,
With buckler, bow, and brand?"

Then they are on to the land of France,
Where auld king Edward lay,
Burning baith castle, tower, and town,
That he met in his way.

Until he came unto that town,
Which some call Billop-Grace:
There were Auld Maitland's sons, all three,
Learning at school, alas!

The eldest to the youngest said,
"Oh, see ye what I see?
If all be true yon standard says,
We're fatherless all three.

"For Scotland's conquer'd up and down;
Landmen we'll never be!
Now, will you go, my brethren two,
And try some jeopardy?"

Then they ha'e saddled twa black horse,
Twa black horse and a gray;
And they are on to king Edward's host,
Before the dawn of day.

When they arrived before the host,
They hover'd on the lay:
"Wilt thou lend me our king's standard,
To bear a little way?"

"Where wast thou bred? where wast thou born?
Where, or in what countrie?"
"In north of England I was born;"
(It needed him to lee.)

"A knight me gat, a ladye bore,
I am a squire of high renown;
I well may bear't to any king
That ever yet wore crown."

"He ne'er came of an Englishman,
Had sic an e'e or bree;
But thou art the likest Auld Maitland,
That ever I did see.

"But sic a gloom on ae browhead,
Grant I ne'er see again!
For mony of our men he slew,
And mony put to pain."

When Maitland heard his father's name,
An angry man was he;
Then, lifting up a gilt dagger,
Hung low down by his knee,

He stabb'd the knight the standard bore,
He stabb'd him cruellie;
Then caught the standard by the neuk,
And fast away rode he.

"Now, is't na time, brothers," he cried,
"Now, is't na time to flee?"
"Ay, by my sooth!" they baith replied,
"We'll bear you companye."

The youngest turn'd him in a path,
And drew a burnish'd brand,
And fifteen of the foremost slew,
Till back the lave did stand.

He spurr'd the gray into the path,
Till baith his sides they bled:
"Gray! thou maun carry me away,
Or my life lies in wad!"

The captain lookit o'er the wall,
About the break of day;
There he beheld the three Scots lads
Pursued along the way.

"Pull up portcullize! down draw-brig!
My nephews are at hand;
And they shall lodge with me to-night,
In spite of all England."

Whene'er they came within the yate,
They thrust their horse them frae,
And took three lang spears in their hands,
Saying--"Here shall come nae me!"

And they shot out, and they shot in,
Till it was fairly day;
When mony of the Englishmen
About the draw-brig lay.

Then they ha'e yoked the carts and wains,
To ca' their dead away,
And shot auld dykes abune the lave,
In gutters where they lay.

The king, at his pavilion door,
Was heard aloud to say:
"Last night, three of the lads of France
My standard stole away.

"With a fause tale, disguised they came,
And with a fauser trayne;
And to regain my gaye standard,
These men where all down slayne."

"It ill befits," the youngest said,
A crowned king to lee;
But, or that I taste meat and drink,
Reproved shall he be."

He went before king Edward straight,
And kneel'd low on his knee:
"I wou'd ha'e leave, my lord," he said,
"To speak a word with thee."

The king he turn'd him round about,
And wistna what to say:
Quo' he, "Man, thou's ha'e leave to speak,
Though thou should speak all day."

"Ye said that three young lads of France
Your standard stole away,
With a fause tale and fauser trayne,
And mony men did slay;

"But we are nane the lads of France,
Nor e'er pretend to be:
We are three lads of fair Scotland,--
Auld Maitland's sons are we.

"Nor is there men in all your host
Daur fight us three to three."
"Now, by my sooth," young Edward said,
"Weel fitted ye shall be!

"Piercy shall with the eldest fight,
And Ethert Lunn with thee;
William of Lancaster the third,
And bring your fourth to me!

"Remember, Piercy, aft the Scot
Has cower'd beneath thy hand;
For every drap of Maitland blood,
I'll gi'e a rig of land."

He clanked Piercy o'er the head
A deep wound and a sair,
Till the best blood of his body
Came running down his hair.

"Now, I've slayne ane; slay ye the twa;
And that's gude companye;
And if the twa shou'd slay ye baith,
Ye'se get nae help frae me."

But Ethert Lunn, a baited bear,
Had many battles seen;
He set the youngest wonder sair,
Till the eldest he grew keen.

"I am nae king, nor nae sic thing:
My word it shanna stand!
For Ethert shall a buffet bide,
Come he beneath my brand."

He clankit Ethert o'er the head
A deep wound and a sair,
Till the best blood in his body
Came running o'er his hair.

"Now, I've slayne twa; slay ye the ane;
Isna that gude companye?
And though the ane shou'd slay ye baith.
Ye'se get nae help of me."

The twa-some they ha'e slayne the ane,
They maul'd him cruellie;
Then hung him over the draw-brig,
That all the host might see.

They rade their horse, they ran their horse,
Then hover'd on the lee:
"We be three lads of fair Scotland,
That fain wou'd fighting see."

This boasting when young Edward heard,
An angry man was he:
"I'll take yon lad, I'll bind yon lad,
And bring him bound to thee!

"Now, God forbid," king Edward said,
"That ever thou shou'd try!
Three worthy leaders we ha'e lost,
And thou the forth wou'd lie.

"If thou shou'dst hang on yon draw-brig,
Blythe wou'd I never be."
But, with the poll-axe in his hand,
Upon the brig sprang be.

The first stroke that young Edward ga'e,
He struck with might and main;
He clove the Maitland's helmet stout,
And bit right nigh the brain.

When Maitland saw his ain blood fall,
An angry man was he;
He let his weapon frae him fall,
And at his throat did flee.

And thrice about he did him swing,
Till on the ground he light,
Where he has halden young Edward,
Tho' he was great in might.

"Now let him up," king Edward cried,
"And let him come to me;
And for the deed that thou hast done,
Thou shalt ha'e earldomes three!"

"It's ne'er be said in France, nor e'er
In Scotland, when I'm hame,
That Edward once lay under me,
And e'er gat up again!"

He pierced him through and through the heart,
He maul'd him cruellie;
Then hung him o'er the draw-brig,
Beside the other three.

"Now take frae me that feather-bed,
Make me a bed of strae!
I wish I hadna lived this day,
To make my heart sae wae.

"If I were ance at London Tow'r,
Where I was wont to be,
I never mair shou'd gang frae hame,
Till borne on a bier-tree."

Ballad: The Broomfield Hill

There was a knight and lady bright
Set trysts amo the broom,
The one to come at morning eav,
The other at afternoon.

"I'll wager a wager wi' you," he said,
"An hundred marks and ten,
That ye shall not go to Broomfield Hills,
Return a maiden again."

"I'll wager a wager wi' you," she said,
"A hundred pounds and ten,
That I will gang to Broomfield Hills,
A maiden return again."

The lady stands in her bower door,
And thus she made her mane:
"Oh, shall I gang to Broomfield Hills,
Or shall I stay at hame?

"If I do gang to Broomfield Hills
A maid I'll not return;
But if I stay from Broomfield Hills,
I'll be a maid mis-sworn."

Then out it speaks an auld witch wife,
Sat in the bower aboon:
"O ye shall gang to Broomfield Hills,
Ye shall not stay at hame.

"But when ye gang to Broomfield Hills,
Walk nine times round and round;
Down below a bonny burn bank,
Ye'll find your love sleeping sound.

"Ye'll pu the bloom frae off the broom,
Strew't at his head and feet,
And aye the thicker that ye do strew,
The sounder he will sleep.

"The broach that is on your napkin,
Put it on his breast bane,
To let him know, when he does wake,
That's true love's come and gane.

"The rings that are on your fingers,
Lay them down on a stane,
To let him know, when he does wake,
That's true love's come and gane.

"And when he hae your work all done,
Ye'll gang to a bush o' broom,
And then you'll hear what he will say,
When he sees ye are gane."

When she came to Broomfield Hills,
She walked it nine times round,
And down below yon burn bank,
She found him sleeping sound.

She pu'd the bloom frae off the broom,
Strew'd it at 's head and feet,
And aye the thicker that she strewd,
The sounder he did sleep.

The broach that was on her napkin,
She put it on his breast-bane,
To let him know, when he did wake,
His love was come and gane.

The rings that were on her fingers,
She laid upon a stane,
To let him know, when he did wake,
His love was come and gane.

Now when she had her work all dune,
She went to a bush o' broom,
That she might hear what he did say,
When he saw that she was gane.

"O where were ye my guid grey hound,
That I paid for sae dear,
Ye didna waken me frae my sleep
When my true love was sae near?"

"I scraped wi' my foot, master,
Till a' my collars rang,
But still the mair that I did scrape,
Waken woud ye nane."

"Where were ye, my bony brown steed,
That I paid for sae dear,
That ye woudna waken me out o' my sleep
When my love was sae near?"

"I patted wi my foot, master,
Till a' my bridles rang,
But the mair that I did patt,
Waken woud ye nane."

"O where were ye, my gay goss-hawk
That I paid for sae dear,
That ye woudna waken me out o' my sleep
When ye saw my love near?"

"I flapped wi my wings, master,
Till a' my bells they rang,
But still, the mair that I did flap,
Waken woud ye nane."

"O where were ye, my merry young men
That I pay meat and fee,
That ye woudna waken me out o' my sleep
When my love ye did see?"

"Ye'll sleep mair on the night, master,
And wake mair on the day;
Gae sooner down to Broomfield Hills
When ye've sic pranks to play.

"If I had seen any armed men
Come riding over the hill--
But I saw but a fair lady
Come quietly you until."

"O wae mat worth yow, my young men,
That I pay meat and fee,
That ye woudna waken me frae sleep
When ye my love did see?

"O had I waked when she was nigh,
And o her got my will,
I shoudna cared upon the morn
The sma birds o her were fill."

When she went out, right bitter she wept,
But singing came she hame;
Says, "I hae been at Broomfield Hills,
And maid returned again."

Ballad: Willie's Ladye

Willie has ta'en him o'er the faem,
He's wooed a wife, and brought her hame;
He's wooed her for her yellow hair,
But his mother wrought her meikle care;

And meikle dolour gar'd her dree,
For lighter she can never be;
But in her bow'r she sits with pain,
And Willie mourns o'er her in vain.

And to his mother he has gane,
That vile rank witch, of vilest kind!
He says--"My lady has a cup,
With gowd and silver set about;
This gudely gift shall be your ain,
And let her be lighter of her bairn."

"Of her bairn she's never be lighter,
Nor in her bow'r to shine the brighter
But she shall die, and turn to clay,
And you shall wed another may."

"Another may I'll never wed,
Another may I'll never bring hame."
But, sighing, said that weary wight--
"I wish my life were at an end."

"Yet gae ye to your mother again,
That vile rank witch, of vilest kind
And say, your ladye has a steed,
The like of him's no in the land of Leed.

"For he is silver shod before,
And he is gowden shod behind;
At every tuft of that horse mane
There's a golden chess, and a bell to ring.
This gudely gift shall be her ain,
And let me be lighter of my bairn."

"Of her young bairn she's ne'er be lighter,
Nor in her bow'r to shine the brighter;
But she shall die, and turn to clay,
And ye shall wed another may."

"Another may I'll never wed,
Another may I'll never bring hame."
But, sighing, said that weary wight--
I wish my life were at an end!"

"Yet gae ye to your mother again,
That vile rank witch, of rankest kind!
And say, your ladye has a girdle,
It's all red gowd to the middle;

"And aye, at ilka siller hem,
Hang fifty siller bells and ten;
This gudely gift shall be her ain,
And let me be lighter of my bairn."

"Of her young bairn she's ne'er be lighter,
Nor in your bow'r to shine the brighter;
For she shall die, and turn to clay,
And thou shall wed another may."

"Another may I'll never wed,
Another may I'll never bring hame."
But, sighing, said that weary wight--
"I wish my days were at an end!"

Then out and spak the Billy Blind,
He spak aye in good time [his mind]:-
"Yet gae ye to the market place,
And there do buy a loaf of wace;
Do shape it bairn and bairnly like,
And in it two glassen een you'll put.

"Oh, wha has loosed the nine witch-knots
That were amang that ladye's locks?
And wha's ta'en out the kames of care,
That were amang that ladye's hair?

"And wha has ta'en down that bush of woodbine
That hung between her bow'r and mine?
And wha has kill'd the master kid
That ran beneath that ladye's bed?
And wha has loosed her left foot shee,
And let that ladye lighter be?"

Syne, Willie's loosed the nine witch-knots
That were amang that ladye's locks;
And Willie's ta'en out the kames of care
That were into that ladye's hair;
And he's ta'en down the bush of woodbine,
Hung atween her bow'r and the witch carline.

And he has killed the master kid
That ran beneath that ladye's bed;
And he has loosed her left foot shee,
And latten that ladye lighter be;
And now he has gotten a bonnie son,
And meikle grace be him upon.

Ballad: Robin Hood And The Monk

In somer when the shawes be sheyne,
And leves be large and longe,
Hit is full mery in feyre foreste
To here the foulys song.

To se the dere draw to the dale,
And leve the hilles hee,
And shadow hem in the leves grene,
Vndur the grene-wode tre.

Hit befell on Whitsontide,
Erly in a may mornyng,
The son vp fayre can shyne,
And the briddis mery can syng.

"This is a mery mornyng," seid Litulle Johne,
"Be hym that dyed on tre;
A more mery man than I am one
Lyves not in Cristiante."

"Pluk vp thi hert, my dere mayster,"
Litulle Johne can sey,
"And thynk hit is a fulle fayre tyme
In a mornynge of may."

"Ze on thynge greves me," seid Robyne,
"And does my hert mych woo,
That I may not so solem day
To mas nor matyns goo.

"Hit is a fourtnet and more," seyd hee,
"Syn I my Sauyour see;
To day will I to Notyngham," seid Robyn,
"With the myght of mylde Mary."

Then spake Moche the mylner sune,
Euer more wel hym betyde,
"Take xii thi wyght zemen
Well weppynd be thei side.
Such on wolde thi selfe slon
That xii dar not abyde."

"Off alle my mery men," seid Robyne,
"Be my feithe I wil non haue;
But Litulle Johne shall beyre my bow
Til that me list to drawe."

* * * * *

"Thou shalle beyre thin own," seid Litulle Jon,
"Maister, and I wil beyre myne,
And we wille shete a peny," seid Litulle Jon,
"Vnder the grene wode lyne."

"I wil not shete a peny," seyde Robyn Hode,
"In feith, Litulle Johne, with thee,
But euer for on as thou shetes," seid Robyn,
"In feith I holde the thre."

Thus shet thei forthe, these zemen too,
Bothe at buske and brome,
Til Litulle Johne wan of his maister
V s. to hose and shone.

A ferly strife fel them betwene,
As they went bi the way;
Litull Johne seid he had won v shyllyngs,
And Robyn Hode seid schortly nay.

With that Robyn Hode lyed Litul Jone,
And smote him with his honde;
Litul John waxed wroth therwith,
And pulled out his bright bronde.

"Were thou not my maister," seid Litulle Johne,
"Thou shuldis by hit ful sore;
Get the a man where thou wilt, Robyn,
For thou getes me no more."

Then Robyn goes to Notyngham,
Hymselfe mornynge allone,
And Litulle Johne to mery Scherewode,
The pathes he knowe alkone.

Whan Robyn came to Notyngham,
Sertenly withoutene layne,
He prayed to God and myld Mary
To brynge hym out saue agayne.

He gos into seynt Mary chirche,
And knelyd downe before the rode;
Alle that euer were the churche within
Beheld wel Robyne Hode.

Beside hym stode a gret-hedid munke,
I pray to God woo he be;
Full sone he knew gode Robyn
As sone as he hym se.

Out at the durre he ran
Ful sone and anon;
Alle the zatis of Notyngham
He made to be sparred euerychone.

"Rise vp," he seid, "thou prowde schereff,
Buske the and make the bowne;
I haue spyed the kynges felone,
For sothe he is in this towne.

"I haue spyed the false felone,
As he stondes at his masse;
Hit is longe of the," seide the munke,
"And euer he fro vs passe.

"This traytur[s] name is Robyn Hode;
Vnder the grene wode lynde,
He robbyt me onys of a C pound,
Hit shalle neuer out of my mynde."

Vp then rose this prowd schereff,
And zade towarde hym zare;
Many was the modur son
To the kyrk with him can fare.

In at the durres thei throly thrast
With staves ful gode ilkone,
"Alas, alas," seid Robin Hode,
"Now mysse I Litulle Johne."

But Robyne toke out a too-hond sworde
That hangit down be his kne;
Ther as the schereff and his men stode thyckust,
Thidurward wold he.

Thryes thorow at them he ran,
Then for sothe as I yow say,
And woundyt many a modur sone,
And xii he slew that day.

Hys sworde vpon the schireff hed
Sertanly he brake in too;
"The smyth that the made," seid Robyn,
"I pray God wyrke him woo.

"For now am I weppynlesse," seid Robyne,
"Alasse, agayn my wylle;
But if I may fle these traytors fro,
I wot thei wil me kylle."

Robyns men to the churche ran
Throout hem euerilkon;
Sum fel in swonyng as thei were dede,
And lay still as any stone.

* * * * *

Non of theym were in her mynde
But only Litulle Jon.

"Let be your dule," seid Litulle Jon,
"For his luf that dyed on tre;
Ze that shulde be duzty men,
Hit is gret shame to se.

"Oure maister has bene hard bystode,
And zet scapyd away;
Pluk up your hertes and leve this mone,
And herkyn what I shal say.

"He has seruyd our lady many a day,
And zet wil securly;
Therefore I trust in her specialy
No wycked deth shal he dye.

"Therfor be glad," seid Litul Johne,
"And let this mournyng be,
And I shall be the munkes gyde,
With the myght of mylde Mary.

"And I mete hym," seid Litull Johne,
"We will go but we too

* * * * *

"Loke that ze kepe wel our tristil tre
Vnder the levys smale,
And spare non of this venyson
That gose in thys vale."

Forthe thei went these zemen too,
Litul Johne and Moche onfere,
And lokid on Moche emys hows
The hyeway lay fulle nere.

Litul John stode at a window in the mornynge,
And lokid forth at a stage;
He was war wher the munke came ridynge,
And with him a litul page.

"Be my feith," said Litul Johne to Moche,
"I can the tel tithyngus gode;
I se wher the munk comys rydyng,
I know hym be his wyde hode."

Thei went into the way these zemen bothe
As curtes men and hende,
Thei spyrred tithyngus at the munke,
As thei hade bene his frende.

"Fro whens come ze," seid Litul Johne,
"Tel vs tithyngus, I yow pray,
Off a false owtlay [called Robyn Hode],
Was takyn zisturday.

"He robbyt me and my felowes bothe
Of xx marke in serten;
If that false owtlay be takyn,
For sothe we wolde be fayne."

"So did he me," seid the munke,
"Of a C pound and more;
I layde furst hande hym apon,
Ze may thonke me therefore."

"I pray God thanke yow," seid Litulle Johne,
"And we wil when we may;
We wil go with yow, with your leve,
And brynge yow on your way.

"For Robyn Hode hase many a wilde felow,
I telle yow in certen;
If thei wist ze rode this way,
In feith ze shulde be slayn."

As thei went talkyng be the way,
The munke an Litulle Johne,
Johne toke the munkes horse be the hede
Ful sone and anone.

Johne toke the munkes horse be the hed,
For sothe as I yow say,
So did Muche the litulle page,
For he shulde not stirre away.

Be the golett of the hode
Johne pulled the munke downe;
Johne was nothynge of hym agast,
He lete hym falle on his crowne.

Litulle Johne was sore agrevyd,
And drew out his swerde in hye;
The munke saw he shulde be ded,
Lowd mercy can he crye.

"He was my maister," said Litulle Johne,
"That thou hase browzt in bale;
Shalle thou neuer cum at our kynge
For to telle hym tale."

John smote of the munkes hed,
No longer wolde he dwelle;
So did Moche the litulle page,
For ferd lest he wold tell.

Ther thei beryed hem both
In nouther mosse nor lynge,
And Litulle Johne and Muche infere
Bare the letturs to oure kyng.

* * * * *

He kneled down vpon--his kne,
"God zow sane, my lege lorde,
Jesus yow saue and se.

"God yow saue, my lege kyng,"
To speke Johne was fulle bolde;
He gaf hym tbe letturs in his hond,
The kyng did hit unfold.

The kyng red the letturs anon,
And seid, "so met I the,
Ther was neuer zoman in mery Inglond
I longut so sore to see.

"Wher is the munke that these shuld haue browzt?"
Oure kynge gan say;
"Be my trouthe," seid Litull Jone,
"He dyed aftur the way."

The kyng gaf Moche and Litul Jon
xx pound in sertan,
And made theim zemen of the crowne,
And bade theim go agayn.

He gaf Johne the seel in hand,
The scheref for to bere,
To brynge Robyn hym to,
And no man do hym dere.

Johne toke his leve at cure kyng,
The sothe as I yow say;
The next way to Notyngham
To take he zede the way.

When Johne came to Notyngham
The zatis were sparred ychone;
Johne callid vp the porter,
He answerid sone anon.

"What is the cause," seid Litul John,
"Thou sparris the zates so fast?"
"Because of Robyn Hode," seid [the] porter,
"In depe prison is cast.

"Johne, and Moche, and Wylle Scathlok,
For sothe as I yow say,
Thir slew oure men vpon oure wallis,
And sawtene vs euery day."

Litulle Johne spyrred aftur the schereff,
And sone he hym fonde;
He oppyned the kyngus prive seelle,
And gaf hyn in his honde.

When the schereft saw the kyngus seelle,
He did of his hode anon;
"Wher is the munke that bare the letturs?"
He said to Litulle Johne.

"He is so fayn of hym," seid Litulle Johne,
"For sothe as I yow sey,
He has made hym abot of Westmynster,
A lorde of that abbay."

The scheref made John gode chere,
And gaf hym wine of the best;
At nyzt thei went to her bedde,
And euery man to his rest.

When the scheref was on-slepe
Dronken of wine and ale,
Litul Johne and Moche for sothe
Toke the way vnto the jale.

Litul Johne callid vp the jayler,
And bade him ryse anon;
He seid Robyn Hode had brokyn preson,
And out of hit was gon.

The portere rose anon sertan,
As sone as he herd John calle;
Litul Johne was redy with a swerd,
And bare hym to the walle.

"Now will I be porter," seid Litul Johne,
"And take the keyes in honde;"
He toke the way to Robyn Hode,
And sone he hym vnbonde.

He gaf hym a gode swerd in his hond,
His hed with for to kepe,
And ther as the walle was lowyst
Anon down can thei lepe.

Be that the cok began to crow,
The day began to sprynge,
The scheref fond the jaylier ded,
The comyn belle made he rynge.

He made a crye thoroowt al the tow[n],
Whedur he be zoman or knave,
That cowthe brynge hyrn Robyn Hode,
His warisone he shuld haue.

"For I dar neuer," said the scheref,
"Cum before oure kynge,
For if I do, I wot serten,
For sothe he wil me henge."

The scheref made to seke Notyngham,
Bothe be strete and stye,
And Robyn was in mery Scherwode
As lizt as lef on lynde.

Then bespake gode Litulle Johne,
To Robyn Hode can he say,
"I haue done the a gode turne for an euylle,
Quyte me whan thou may.

"I haue done the a gode turne," said Litulle Johne,
"For sothe as I you saie;
I haue brouzt the vnder grene wode lyne;
Fare wel, and haue gode day."

"Nay, be my trouthe," seid Robyn Hode,
"So shalle hit neuer be;
I make the maister," seid Robyn Hode,
"Off alle my men and me."

"Nay, be my trouthe," seid Litulle Johne,
"So shall hit neuer be,
But lat me be a felow," seid Litulle Johne,
"Non odur kepe I'll be."

Thus Johne gate Robyn Hode out of prisone,
Sertan withoutyn layne;
When his men saw hym hol and sounde,
For sothe they were ful fayne.

They filled in wyne, and made him glad,
Vnder the levys smale,
And zete pastes of venysone,
That gode was with ale.

Than worde came to oure kynge,
How Robyn Hode was gone,
And how the scheref of Notyngham
Durst neuer loke hyme vpone.

Then bespake oure cumly kynge,
In an angur hye,
"Litulle Johne hase begyled the schereff,
In faith so hase he me.

"Litulle Johne has begyled vs bothe,
And that fulle wel I se,
Or ellis the schereff of Notyngham
Hye hongut shuld he be.

"I made hem zemen of the crowne,
And gaf hem fee with my hond,
I gaf hem grithe," seid oure kyng,
"Thorowout alle mery Inglond.

"I gaf hem grithe," then seide oure kyng,
"I say, so mot I the,
For sothe soche a zeman as he is on
In alle Ingland ar not thre.

"He is trew to his maister," seide oure kynge,
"I say, be swete seynt Johne;
He louys bettur Robyn Hode,
Then he dose vs ychone.

"Robyne Hode is euer bond to him,
Bothe in strete and stalle;
Speke no more of this matter," seid oure kynge,
"But John has begyled vs alle."

Thus endys the talkyng of the munke
And Robyne Hode i-wysse;
God, that is euer a crowned kyng,
Bryng vs alle to his blisse.

Ballad: Robin Hood And The Potter

In schomer, when the leves spryng,
The bloschems on every bowe,
So merey doyt the berdys syng
Yn wodys merey now.

Herkens, god yemen,
Comley, corteysse, and god,
On of the best that yever bar bou,
Hes name was Roben Hode.

Roben Hood was the yemans name,
That was boyt corteys and fre;
For the loffe of owr ladey,
All wemen werschep he.

Bot as the god yemen stod on a day,
Among hes mery maney,
He was war of a prowd potter,
Cam dryfyng owyr the ley.

"Yonder comet a prod potter," seyde Roben,
"That long hayt hantyd this wey;
He was never so corteys a man
On peney of pawage to pay."

"Y met hem bot at Wentbreg," seyde Lytyll John,
"And therfor yeffell mot he the,
Seche thre strokes he me gafe,
Yet they cleffe by my seydys.

"Y ley forty shillings," seyde Lytyll John,
"To pay het thes same day,
Ther ys nat a man arnong hus all
A wed schall make hem ley."

"Her ys forty shillings," seyde Roben,
"Mor, and thow dar say,
That y schall make that prowde potter,
A wed to me schall he ley."

Ther thes money they leyde,
They toke bot a yeman to kepe;
Roben befor the potter he breyde,
And bad hem stond stell.

Handys apon hes horse he leyde,
And bad the potter stonde foll stell;
The potter schorteley to hem seyde,
"Felow, what ys they well?"

"All thes thre yer, and mor, potter," he seyde,
"Thow hast hantyd thes wey,
Yet wer tow never so cortys a man
One peney of pauage to pay."

"What ys they name," seyde the potter,
"For pauage thow ask of me?"
"Roben Hod ys mey name,
A wed schall thow leffe me."

"Well well y non leffe," seyde the potter,
"Nor pavag well y non pay;
Away they honde fro mey horse,
Y well the tene eyls, be me fay."

The potter to hes cart he went,
He was not to seke;
A god to-hande staffe therowt he hent,
Befor Roben he lepe.

Roben howt with a swerd bent,
A bokeler en hes honde [therto];
The potter to Roben he went,
And seyde, "Felow, let mey horse go."

Togeder then went thes two yemen,
Het was a god seyt to se;
Therof low Robyn hes men,
Ther they stod onder a tre.

Leytell John to hes felowhes seyde,
"Yend potter welle steffeley stonde:"
The potter, with an acward stroke,
Smot the bokeler owt of hes honde;

And ar Roben meyt get hem agen
Hes bokeler at hes fette,
The potter yn the neke hem toke,
To the gronde sone he yede.

That saw Roben hes men,
As they stode ender a bow;
"Let us helpe owr master," seyed Lytell John,
"Yonder potter els well hem sclo."

Thes yemen went with a breyde,
To ther master they cam.
Leytell John to hes master seyde,
"He haet the wager won?

"Schall y haff yowr forty shillings," seyde Lytel John,
"Or ye, master, schall haffe myne?"
"Yeff they wer a hundred," seyde Roben,
"Y feythe, they ben all theyne."

"Het ys fol leytell cortesey," seyde the potter,
"As y haffe harde weyse men saye,
Yeff a por yeman com drywyng ower the wey,
To let hem of hes gorney."

"Be mey trowet, thow seys soyt," seyde Roben,
"Thow seys god yemenrey;
And thow dreyffe forthe yevery day,
Thow schalt never be let for me.

"Y well prey the, god potter,
A felischepe well thow haffe?
Geffe me they clothyng, and thow schalt hafe myne;
Y well go to Notynggam."

"Y grant therto," seyde the potter,
"Thow schalt feynde me a felow gode;
But thow can sell mey pottes well,
Come ayen as thow yode."

"Nay, be mey trowt," seyde Roben,
"And then y bescro mey hede
Yeffe y bryng eney pottes ayen,
And eney weyffe well hem chepe."

Than spake Leytell John,
And all hes felowhes heynd,
"Master, be well war of the screffe of Notynggam,
For he ys leytell howr frende."

"Heyt war howte," seyde Roben,
"Felowhes, let me alone;
Thorow the helpe of howr ladey,
To Notynggam well y gon."

Robyn went to Notynggam,
Thes pottes for to sell;
The potter abode with Robens men,
Ther he fered not eylle.

Tho Roben droffe on hes wey,
So merey ower the londe:
Heres mor and affter ys to saye,
The best ys beheynde.


When Roben cam to Netynggam,
The soyt yef y scholde saye,
He set op hes horse anon,
And gaffe hem hotys and haye.

Yn the medys of the towne,
Ther he schowed hes war;
"Pottys! pottys!" he gan crey foll sone,
"Haffe hansell for the mar."

Foll effen agenest the screffeys gate
Schowed he hes chaffar;
Weyffes and wedowes abowt hem drow,
And chepyd fast of hes war.

Yet, "Pottys, gret chepe!" creyed Robyn,
"Y loffe yeffell thes to stonde;"
And all that saw hem sell,
Seyde he had be no potter long.

The pottys that wer werthe pens feyffe,
He sold tham for pens thre;
Preveley seyde man and weyffe,
"Ywnder potter schall never the."

Thos Roben solde foll fast,
Tell he had pottys bot feyffe;
On he hem toke of his car,
And sende hem to the screffeys weyffe.

Therof sche was foll fayne,
"Gramarsey, sir," than seyde sche;
"When ye com to thes contre ayen,
Y schall bey of they pottys, so mot y the."

"Ye schall haffe of the best," seyde Roben,
And swar be the treneyte;
Foll corteysley she gan hem call,
"Com deyne with the screfe and me."

"Godamarsey," seyde Roben,
"Yowr bedyng schalle be doyn;"
A mayden yn the pottys gan ber,
Roben and the screffe weyffe folowed anon.

Whan Roben ynto the hall cam,
The screffe sone he met;
The potter cowed of corteysey,
And sone the screffe he gret.

"Loketh what thes potter hayt geffe yow and me;
Feyffe pottys smalle and grete!"
"He ys fol wellcom, seyd the screffe,
"Let os was, and go to mete."

As they sat at her methe,
With a nobell cher,
Two of the screffes men gan speke
Off a gret wager,

Was made the thother daye,
Off a schotyng was god and feyne,
Off forty shillings, the soyt to saye,
Who scholde thes wager wen.

Styll than sat thes prowde po,
Thos than thowt he;
"As y am a trow Cerstyn man,
Thes schotyng well y se."

Whan they had fared of the best,
With bred and ale and weyne,
To the bottys they made them prest,
With bowes and boltys full feyne.

The screffes men schot foll fast,
As archares that weren godde;
Ther cam non ner ney the marke
Bey halfe a god archares bowe.

Stell then stod the prowde potter,
Thos than seyde he;
"And y had a bow, be the rode,
On schot scholde yow se."

"Thow schall haffe a bow," seyde the screffe,
"The best that thow well cheys of thre;
Thou semyst a stalward and a stronge,
Asay schall thow be."

The screffe commandyd a yeman that stod hem bey
Affter bowhes to wende;
The best bow that the yeman browthe
Roben set on a stryng.

"Now schall y wet and thow be god,
And polle het op to they ner;"
"So god me helpe," seyde the prowde potter,
"Thys ys bot rygzt weke ger."

To a quequer Roben went,
A god bolt owthe he toke;
So ney on to the marke he went,
He fayled not a fothe.

All they schot abowthe agen,
The screffes men and he;
Off the marke he welde not fayle,
He cleffed the preke on thre.

The screffes men thowt gret schame,
The potter the mastry wan;
The screffe lowe and made god game,
And seyde, "Potter, thow art a man;
Thow art worthey to ber a bowe,
Yn what plas that thow gang."

"Yn mey cart y haffe a bowe,
Forsoyt," he seyde, "and that a godde;
Yn mey cart ys the bow
That I had of Robyn Hode."

"Knowest thow Robyn Hode?" seyde the screffe,
"Potter, y prey the tell thou me;"
"A hundred torne y haffe schot with hem,
Under hes tortyll tree."

"Y had lever nar a hundred ponde," seyde the screffe,
And swar be the trenite,
["Y had lever nar a hundred ponde," he seyde,]
"That the fals owtelawe stod be me.

"And ye well do afftyr mey red," seyde the potter,
"And boldeley go with me,
And to morow, or we het bred,
Roben Hode wel we se."

"Y well queyt the," kod the screffe,
And swer be god of meythe;
Schetyng thay left, and hom they went,
Her scoper was redey deythe.

Upon the morow, when het was day,
He boskyd hem forthe to reyde;
The potter hes carte forthe gan ray,
And wolde not [be] leffe beheynde.

He toke leffe of the screffys wyffe,
And thankyd her of all thyng:
"Dam, for mey loffe, and ye well thys wer,
Y geffe yow her a golde ryng."

"Gramarsey," seyde the weyffe,
"Sir, god eylde het the;"
The screffes hart was never so leythe,
The feyr forest to se.

And when he cam ynto the foreyst,
Yonder the leffes grene,
Berdys ther sange on bowhes prest,
Het was gret joy to sene.

"Her het ys mercy to be," seyde Roben,
"For a man that had hawt to spende;
Be mey horne we schall awet
Yeff Roben Hode be ner hande."

Roben set hes horne to hes mowthe,
And blow a blast that was full god,
That herde hes men that ther stode,
Fer downe yn the wodde;
"I her mey master," seyde Leytell John;
They ran as thay wer wode.

Whan thay to thar master cam,
Leytell John wold not spar;
"Master, how haffe yow far yn Notynggam?
How haffe yow solde yowr war?"

"Ye, be mey trowthe, Leytyll John,
Loke thow take no car;
Y haffe browt the screffe of Notynggam,
For all howr chaffar."

"He ys foll wellcom," seyde Lytyll John,
"Thes tydyng ys foll godde;"
The screffe had lever nar a hundred ponde
[He had never sene Roben Hode.]

"Had I west that beforen,
At Notynggam when we wer,
Thow scholde not com yn feyr forest
Of all thes thowsande eyr."

"That wot y well," seyde Roben,
"Y thanke god that ye be her;
Therfor schall ye leffe yowr horse with hos,
And all your hother ger."

"That fend I godys forbode," kod the screffe,
"So to lese mey godde;"
"Hether ye cam on horse foll hey,
And hom schall ye go on fote;
And gret well they weyffe at home,
The woman ys foll godde.

"Y schall her sende a wheyt palffrey,
Het hambellet as the weynde;
Ner for the loffe of yowr weyffe,
Off mor sorow scholde yow seyng."

Thes parted Robyn Hode and the screffe,
To Notynggam he toke the waye;
Hes weyffe feyr welcomed hem hom,
And to hem gan sche saye:

"Seyr, how haffe yow fared yn grene foreyst?
Haffe ye browt Roben hom?"
"Dam, the deyell spede him, bothe bodey and bon,
Y haffe hade a foll grete skorne.

"Of all the god that y haffe lade to grene wod,
He hayt take het fro me,
All bot this feyr palffrey,
That he hayt sende to the."

With that sche toke op a lowde lawhyng,
And swhar be hem that deyed on tre,
"Now haffe yow payed for all the pottys
That Roben gaffe to me.

"Now ye be corn hom to Notynggam,
Ye schall haffe god ynowe;"
Now speke we of Roben Hode,
And of the pottyr onder the grene bowhe.

"Potter, what was they pottys worthe
To Notynggam that y ledde with me?"
"They wer worth two nobellys," seyd he,
"So mot y treyffe or the;
So cowde y had for tham,
And y had ther be."

"Thow schalt hafe ten ponde," seyde Roben,
"Of money feyr and fre;
And yever whan thou comest to grene wod,
Wellcom, potter to me."

Thes partyd Robyn, the screffe, and the potter,
Ondernethe the grene-wod tre;
God haffe mersey on Robyn Hodys solle,
And saffe all god yemanrey!

Ballad: Robin Hood And The Butcher

Come, all you brave gallants, and listen awhile,
With hey down, down, an a down,
That are in the bowers within;
For of Robin Hood, that archer good,
A song I intend for to sing.

Upon a time it chanced so,
Bold Robin in forrest did 'spy
A jolly butcher, with a bonny fine mare,
With his flesh to the market did hye.

"Good morrow, good fellow," said jolly Robin,
"What food hast [thou]? tell unto me;
Thy trade to me tell, and where thou dost dwell,
For I like well thy company."

The butcher he answer'd jolly Robin,
"No matter where I dwell;
For a butcher I am, and to Nottingham
I am going, my flesh to sell."

"What's [the] price of thy flesh?" said jolly Robin,
"Come, tell it soon unto me;
And the price of thy mare, be she never so dear,
For a butcher fain would I be."

"The price of my flesh," the butcher repli'd,
"I soon will tell unto thee;
With my bonny mare, and they are not too dear,
Four mark thou must give unto me."

"Four mark I will give thee," saith jolly Robin,
"Four mark it shall be thy fee;
The mony come count, and let me mount,
For a butcher I fain would be."

Now Robin he is to Nottingham gone,
His butchers trade to begin;
With good intent to the sheriff he went,
And there he took up his inn.

When other butchers did open their meat,
Bold Robin he then begun;
But how for to sell he knew not well,
For a butcher he was but young.

When other butchers no meat could sell,
Robin got both gold and fee;
For he sold more meat for one peny
Then others could do for three.

But when he sold his meat so fast,
No butcher by him could thrive;
For he sold more meat for one peny
Than others could do for five.

Which made the butchers of Nottingham
To study as they did stand,
Saying, "Surely he 'is' some prodigal,
That hath sold his fathers land."

The butchers stepped to jolly Robin,
Acquainted with him for to be;
"Come, brother," one said, "we be all of one trade,
Come, will you go dine with me?"

"Accurst of his heart," said jolly Robin,
"That a butcher doth deny;
I will go with you, my brethren true,
As fast as I can hie."

But when to the sheriffs house they came,
To dinner they hied apace,
And Robin Hood he the man must be
Before them all to say grace.

"Pray God bless us all," said jolly Robin,
"And our meat within this place;
A cup of sack so good will nourish our blood,
And so do I end my grace."

"Come fill us more wine," said jolly Robin,
"Let us be merry while we do stay;
For wine and good cheer, be it never so dear,
I vow I the reck'ning will pay.

"Come, 'brothers,' be merry," said jolly Robin,
"Let us drink, and never give ore;
For the shot I will pay, ere I go my way,
If it cost me five pounds and more."

"This is a mad blade," the butchers then said;
Saies the sheriff, "He is some prodigal,
That some land has sold for silver and gold,
And now he doth mean to spend all.

"Hast thou any horn beasts," the sheriff repli'd,
"Good fellow, to sell unto me?"
"Yes, that I have, good master sheriff,


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