SKI[OE]N ANNA; FAIR ANNIE, See p. 191.
Translated in Jamieson's _Popular Ballads_, ii. 103, from Syv's _Kj[oe]mpe Viser_. See another copy in Nyerup's _Danske Viser_, iv. 59.
The reivers they wad a stealing gang, To steal sae far frae hame; And stown ha'e they the king's daughter, Fair Annie hight by name.
They've carried her into fremmit lands, 5 To a duke's son of high degree; And he has gie'n for Fair Annie Mickle goud and white money.
And eight lang years o' love sae leal Had past atween them twae; 10 And now a bonny bairntime O' seven fair sons had they.
That lord he was of Meckelborg land, Of princely blood and stemme; And for his worth and curtesy 15 That lord a king became.
But little wist that noble king, As little his barons bald, That it was the king of England's daughter, Had sae to him been sald! 20
And eight lang years sae past and gane, Fair Annie now may rue; For now she weets in fremmit lands Anither bride he'll wooe.
Fair Annie's till his mither gane; 25 Fell low down on her knee; "A boon, a boon, now lady mither, Ye grant your oys and me!
"If ever ye kist, if ever ye blest, And bade them thrive and thee, 30 O save them now frae scaith and scorn, O save your oys and me!
"Their father's pride may yet relent; His mither's rede he'll hear; Nor for anither break the heart 35 That ance to him was dear.
"He had my love and maiden pride; I had nae mair to gi'e; He well may fa' a brighter bride, But nane that lo'es like me." 40
"A brighter bride he ne'er can fa'; A richer well he may; But daughter dearer nor Fair Annie, His mither ne'er can ha'e."
That princess stood her son before: 45 "My lord the king," said she, "Fy on the lawless life ye lead, Dishonour'd as ye be!
"Its Annie's gude, and Annie's fair, And dearly she lo'es thee; 50 And the brightest gems in a' your crown Your seven fair sons wad be.
"Her love, her life, her maiden fame, Wi' you she shar'd them a'; Now share wi' her your bridal bed; 55 Her due she well may fa'."
"To my bridal bed, my mither dear, Fair Annie ne'er can win; I coft her out of fremmit lands, Nor ken her kith or kin." 60
And he's gard write a braid letter, His wedding to ordein; And to betrothe anither bride To be his noble queen.
Fair Annie up at her bower window 65 Heard a' that knight did say: "O God, my heavenly Father! gif My heart mat brast in twae!"
Fair Annie stood at her bower window, And heard that knight sae bald: 70 "O God, my heavenly Father! gif I mat my dearest hald!"
That lord is to Fair Annie gane: Says, "Annie, thou winsome may, O whatten a gude gift will ye gi'e 75 My bride on her bridal day?"
"I'll gi'e her a gift, and a very gude gift, And a dear-bought gift to me; For I'll gi'e her my seven fair sons, Her pages for to be." 80
"O that is a gift, but nae gude gift, Frae thee, Fair Annie, I ween; And ye maun gi'e some richer gift Befitting a noble queen."
"I'll gi'e her a gift, and a dear, dear gift, 85 And a gift I brook wi' care; For I'll gi'e her my dearest life, That I dow brook nae mair."
"O that is a gift, but a dowie gift, Now, Annie, thou winsome may; 90 Ye maun gi'e her your best goud girdle, Her gude will for to ha'e."
"Oh na, that girdle she ne'er shall fa'; That I can never bear; The luckless morn I gave you a', 95 Ye gae me that girdle to wear."
That lord before his bride gan stand: "My noble bride and queen!
O whatten a gift to my lemman Annie Will now by you be gi'en?" 100
"I'll gi'e her a gift, and a very gude gift, My lord the king," said she; "For I'll gi'e her my auld shoe to wear, Best fitting her base degree."
"O that is a gift, but nae gude gift, 105 My noble bride and queen; And ye maun gi'e her anither gift, If you'll my favour win."
"Then I'll gi'e her a very gude gift, My lord the king," said she; 110 "I'll gie her my millers seven, that lig Sae far ayont the sea.
"Well are they fed, well are they clad, And live in heal and weal; And well they ken to measure out 115 The wheat, but and caneel."
Fair Annie says, "My noble lord, This boon ye grant to me; Let me gang up to the bridal bower, Your young bride for to see." 120
"O gangna, Annie, gangna, there, Nor come that bower within; Ye maunna come near that bridal bower, Wad ye my favour win."
Fair Annie is till his mither gane: 125 "O lady mither," said she, "May I gang to the bridal bower, My lord's new bride to see?"
"That well ye may," his mither said; But see that ye're buskit bra', 130 And clad ye in your best cleading, Wi' your bower maidens a'."
Fair Annie she's gaen to the bower, Wi' heart fu' sair and sad; Wi' a' her seven sons her before, 135 In the red scarlet clad.
Fair Annie's taen a silver can, Afore the bride to skink; And down her cheeks the tears ay run, Upon hersell to think. 140
The bride gan stand her lord before: "Now speak, and dinna spare; Whare is this fair young lady frae?
Whareto greets she sae sair?"
"O hear ye now, dear lady mine, 145 The truth I tell to thee; It is but a bonny niece of mine, That is come o'er the sea."
"O wae is me, my lord," she says, "To hear you say sic wrang; 150 It can be nane but your auld lemman; God rede whare she will gang!"
"Then till her sorrow, and till her wae, I'll tell the truth to thee; For she was sald frae fremmit lands, 155 For mickle goud to me.
"Her bairntime a' stand her before, Her seven young sons sae fair; And they maun now your pages be, That maks her heart sae sair." 160
"A little sister ance I had, A sister that hight Ann; By reivers she was stown awa', And sald in fremmit land.
"She was a bairn when she was stown, 165 Yet in her tender years; And sair her parents mourn'd for her, Wi' mony sighs and tears.
"Art thou fair Annie, sister mine, Thou noble violet flower? 170 Her mither never smil'd again Frae Annie left her bower!
"O thou art she! a sister's heart Wants nane that tale to tell!
And there he is, thy ain true lord; 175 God spare ye lang and well!"