In anger he went to the Queen, Who fell upon her knee; He said, "You false, unchaste woman, What's this you've done to me?"
The Queen then turn'd herself about, 65 The tear blinded her ee-- "There's not a knight in a' your court Dare give that name to me."
He said, "'Tis true that I do say; For I a proof did make: 70 You shall be taken from my bower, And burned at a stake.
"Perhaps I'll take my word again, And may repent the same, If that you'll get a Christian man 75 To fight that Rodingham."--
"Alas! alas!" then cried our Queen, "Alas, and woe to me!
There's not a man in all Scotland Will fight with him for me."-- 80
She breathed unto her messengers, Sent them south, east, and west; They could find none to fight with him, Nor enter the contest.
She breathed on her messengers, 85 She sent them to the north; And there they found Sir Hugh le Blond, To fight him he came forth.
When unto him they did unfold The circumstance all right, 90 He bade them go and tell the Queen, That for her he would fight.
The day came on that was to do That dreadful tragedy; Sir Hugh le Blond was not come up 95 To fight for our ladye.
"Put on the fire," the monster said: "It is twelve on the bell."
"'Tis scarcely ten, now," said the King; "I heard the clock mysell."-- 100
Before the hour the Queen is brought, The burning to proceed; In a black velvet chair she's set, A token for the dead.
She saw the flames ascending high, 105 The tears blinded her ee: "Where is the worthy knight," she said, "Who is to fight for me?"--
Then up and spak the King himsell, "My dearest, have no doubt, 110 For yonder comes the man himsell, As bold as e'er set out."--
They then advanced to fight the duel With swords of temper'd steel, Till down the blood of Rodingham 115 Came running to his heel.
Sir Hugh took out a lusty sword, 'Twas of the metal clear, And he has pierced Rodingham Till's heart-blood did appear. 120
"Confess your treachery, now," he said, "This day before you die!"-- "I do confess my treachery, I shall no longer lye:
"I like to wicked Haman am, 125 This day I shall be slain."-- The Queen was brought to her chamber, A good woman again.
The Queen then said unto the King, "Arbattle's near the sea; 130 Give it unto the northern knight, That this day fought for me."
Then said the King, "Come here, Sir Knight, And drink a glass of wine; And, if Arbattle's not enough,[L135] 135 To it we'll Fordoun join."
135. Arbattle is the ancient name of the barony of Arbuthnot. Fordun has long been the patrimony of the same family. S.
THE KNIGHT, AND SHEPHERD'S DAUGHTER.
"This ballad (given from an old black-letter copy, with some corrections) was popular in the time of Queen Elizabeth, being usually printed with her picture before it, as Hearne informs us in his preface to Gul. Neubrig, _Hist. Oxon_, 1719, 8vo. vol. i. p. lxx. It is quoted in Fletcher's comedy of the _Pilgrim_, act 4, sc. 2." PERCY'S _Reliques_, iii. 114.
The Scottish ballad corresponding to Percy's has been printed by Kinloch, p. 25. Besides this, however, there are three other Scottish versions, superior to the English in every respect, and much longer.
They are _Earl Richard_, Motherwell, p. 377; (also in Buchan's _Ballads of the North of Scotland_, ii. 81;) a ballad with the same title in Kinloch's collection, p. 15; and _Earl Lithgow_, Buchan, ii. 91. In all these, the futile attempts of the knight to escape marrying the lady, and the devices by which she aggravates his reluctance to enter into the match, are managed with no little humour. We give Motherwell's edition a place next to Percy's, and refer the reader for Kinloch's to the Appendix.
There was a shepherds daughter Came tripping on the waye, And there by chance a knighte shee mett, Which caused her to staye.
"Good morrowe to you, beauteous maide," 5 These words pronounced hee; "O I shall dye this daye," he sayd, "If Ive not my wille of thee."
"The Lord forbid," the maide replyd, "That you shold waxe so wode!" 10 But for all that shee could do or saye,[L11]
He wold not be withstood.
"Sith you have had your wille of mee, And put me to open shame, Now, if you are a courteous knighte, 15 Tell me what is your name?"
"Some do call mee Jacke, sweet heart, And some do call mee Jille; But when I come to the kings faire courte, They calle me Wilfulle Wille." 20
He sett his foot into the stirrup, And awaye then he did ride; She tuckt her girdle about her middle, And ranne close by his side.
But when she came to the brode water, 25 She sett her brest and swamme; And when she was got out againe, She tooke to her heels and ranne.
He never was the courteous knighte, To saye, "Faire maide, will ye ride?" 30 And she was ever too loving a maide To saye, "Sir knighte, abide."
When she came to the kings faire courte, She knocked at the ring; So readye was the king himself 35 To let this faire maide in.
"Now Christ you save, my gracious liege, Now Christ you save and see; You have a knighte within your courte This daye hath robbed mee." 40
"What hath he robbed thee of, sweet heart?
Of purple or of pall?
Or hath he took thy gaye gold ring From off thy finger small?"
"He hath not robbed mee, my liege, 45 Of purple nor of pall; But he hath gotten my maidenhead, Which grieves mee worst of all."
"Now if he be a batchelor, His bodye Ile give to thee; 50 But if he be a married man, High hanged he shall bee."
He called downe his merrye men all, By one, by two, by three; Sir William used to bee the first, 55 But nowe the last came hee.
He brought her downe full fortye pounde, Tyed up withinne a glove: "Faire maid, Ile give the same to thee; Go, seeke thee another love." 60
"O Ile have none of your gold," she sayde, "Nor Ile have none of your fee; But your faire bodye I must have, The king hath granted mee."
Sir William ranne and fetchd her then 65 Five hundred pound in golde, Saying, "Faire maide, take this to thee, Thy fault will never be tolde."
"Tis not the gold that shall mee tempt,"
These words then answered shee, 70 "But your own bodye I must have, The king hath granted mee."
"Would I had drunke the water cleare, When I did drinke the wine, Rather than any shepherds brat 75 Shold bee a ladye of mine!
"Would I had drank the puddle foule, When I did drink the ale, Rather than ever a shepherds brat Shold tell me such a tale!" 80
"A shepherds brat even as I was, You mote have let mee bee; I never had come to the kings faire courte, To crave any love of thee."
He sett her on a milk-white steede, 85 And himself upon a graye; He hung a bugle about his necke, And soe they rode awaye.