His hall was hung wi' silk and satin, His table rung wi' mirth and glee; He soon forgot the lady fair, That lows'd him out o' slaverie. 100
Lord Beichan courted a lady gay, To heir wi' him his lands sae free, Ne'er thinking that a lady fair Was on her way frae Grand Turkie.
For Susie Pye could get na rest, 105 Nor day nor nicht could happy be, Still thinking on the Scottish Lord, Till she was sick and like to dee.
But she has builded a bonnie ship, Weel mann'd wi' seamen o' hie degree; 110 And secretly she stept on board, And bid adieu to her ain countrie.
But whan she cam to the Scottish shore, The bells were ringing sae merrilie; It was Lord Beichan's wedding day, 115 Wi' a lady fair o' hie degree.
But sic a vessel was never seen; The very masts were tapp'd wi' gold; Her sails were made o' the satin fine, Maist beautiful for to behold. 120
But whan the lady cam on shore, Attended wi' her pages three, Her shoon were of the beaten gowd, And she a lady of great beautie.
Then to the skipper she did say, 125 "Can ye this answer gie to me-- Where are Lord Beichan's lands sae braid?
He surely lives in this countrie."
Then up bespak the skipper bold,-- For he could speak the Turkish tongue,-- 130 "Lord Beichan lives not far away; This is the day of his wedding."
"If ye will guide me to Beichan's yetts, I will ye well reward," said she,-- Then she and all her pages went, 135 A very gallant companie.
When she cam to Lord Beichan's yetts, She tirl'd gently at the pin; Sae ready was the proud porter To let the wedding guests come in. 140
"Is this Lord Beichan's house," she says, "Or is that noble lord within?"
"Yes, he is gane into the hall, With his brave bride and monie ane."
"Ye'll bid him send me a piece of bread, 145 Bot and a cup of his best wine; And bid him mind the lady's love That ance did lowse him out o' pyne."
Then in and cam the porter bold,-- I wat he gae three shouts and three,-- 150 "The fairest lady stands at your yetts That ever my twa een did see."
Then up bespak the bride's mither,-- I wat an angry woman was she,-- "You micht hae excepted our bonnie bride, 155 Tho' she'd been three times as fair as she."
"My dame, your daughter's fair enough, And aye the fairer mot she be!
But the fairest time that e'er she was, She'll na compare wi' this ladie. 160
"She has a gowd ring on ilka finger, And on her mid-finger she has three; She has as meikle gowd upon her head, As wad buy an earldom o' land to thee.
"My lord, she begs some o' your bread, 165 Bot and a cup o' your best wine, And bids you mind the lady's love That ance did lowse ye out o' pyne."
Then up and started Lord Beichan,-- I wat he made the table flee,-- 170 "I wad gie a' my yearlie rent 'Twere Susie Pye come owre the sea."
Syne up bespak the bride's mother,-- She was never heard to speak sae free,-- "Ye'll no forsake my ae dochter, 175 Tho' Susie Pye has cross'd the sea?"
"Tak hame, tak hame, your dochter, madam, For she is ne'er the waur o' me; She cam to me on horseback riding, And she sall gang hame in chariot free." 180
He's tane Susie Pye by the milk-white hand, And led her thro' his halls sae hie: "Ye're now Lord Beichan's lawful wife, And thrice ye're welcome unto me."
Lord Beichan prepar'd for another wedding, 185 Wi' baith their hearts sae fu' o' glee;-- Says, "I'll range na mair in foreign lands, Sin Susie Pye has cross'd the sea.
"Fy! gar a' our cooks mak ready; And fy! gar a' our pipers play; 190 And fy! gar trumpets gae thro' the toun, That Lord Beichan's wedded twice in a day!"
SWEET WILLIAM. See p. 29.
"Given from the chanting of an old woman. It has never been before printed." Motherwell's _Minstrelsy_, p. 307.
Other versions may be seen in that careless publication of the Percy Society, _Scottish Traditional Versions of Ancient Ballads_, vol.
xvii. p. 57, _Lord William_, and in Buchan's _Ballads of the North of Scotland_, ii. 57, _Lord Lundy_.
Sweet William's gane over seas, Some unco lair to learn, And our gude Bailie's ae dochter Is awa to learn the same.
In ae braid buik they learned baith, 5 In ae braid bed they lay; But when her father cam to know, He gart her come away.
"It's you must marry that Southland lord, His lady for to be; 10 It's ye maun marry that Southland lord, Or nocht ye'll get frae me."
"I must marry that Southland lord, Father, an it be your will; But I'd rather it were my burial day, 15 My grave for to fill."
She walked up, she walked down, Had nane to mak her moan, Nothing but the pretty bird Sat on the causey stone. 20
"If thou could speak, wee bird," she says, "As weel as thou can flee, I would write a lang letter To Will ayont the sea."
"What thou wants wi' Will," it says, 25 "Thou'll seal it wi' thy ring; Tak a thread o' silk, and anither o' twine, And about my neck it hing."
What she wanted wi' Willie She sealed it wi' a ring; 30 Took a thread o' silk, anither of twine, About its neck did hing.
This bird flew high, this bird flew low, This bird flew owre the sea, Until it entered the same chamber 35 Wherein was sweet Willie.
This bird flew high, this bird flew low,-- Poor bird, it was mista'en,-- It loot the letter fa' on Baldie's breast, Instead of sweet William. 40
"Here's a letter, William," he says, "I'm sure it's not to me; And gin the morn gin twelve o'clock Your love shall married be."
"Come saddle to me my horse," he said, 45 "The brown and a' that's speedie, And I'll awa' to Old England, To bring hame my ladie."
Awa he gade, awa he rade, Awa wi' meikle speed; 50 He lichtit at every twa miles' end, Lichtit and changed his steed.
When she entered the church style, The tear was in her e'e; But when she entered the church door, 55 A blythe sight did she see.
"O hold your hand, you minister, Hold it a little wee, Till I speak wi' the bonnie bride, For she's a friend to me. 60
"Stand off, stand off, you braw bridegroom, Stand off a little wee; Stand off, stand off, you braw bridegroom, For the bride shall join wi' me."
Up and spak the bride's father, 65 And an angry man was he,-- "If I had pistol, powther and lead, And all at my command, It's I would shoot thee stiff and dead, In the place where thou dost stand." 70
Up and spoke then sweet William, And a blithe blink from his e'e: "If ye ne'er be shot till I shoot you, Ye'se ne'er be shot for me.
"Come out, come out, my foremost man, 75 And lift my lady on; Commend me all to my goodmother, At night when you gang home."