To warny alle the gentilmen that bueth in Scotlonde, The Waleis wes to-drawe, seththe he wes an-honge, Al quic biheveded, ys bowels ybrend, The heved to Londone-brugge wes send, 20 To abyde.
After Simond Frysel, That wes traytour ant fykell, Ant y-cud ful wyde.
Sire Edward oure kyng, that ful ys of piete, 25 The Waleis quarters sende to is oune contre, On four-half to honge, huere myrour to be, Theropon to thenche, that monie myhten se, Ant drede.
Why nolden he be war 30 Of the bataile of Donbar, Hou evele hem con spede?
Bysshopes ant barouns come to the kynges pes, Ase men that weren fals, fykel, ant les, Othes hue him sworen in stude ther he wes, 35 To buen him hold ant trewe for alles cunnes res, Thrye, That hue ne shulden ayeyn him go, So hue were temed tho; Weht halt hit to lye? 40
To the kyng Edward hii fasten huere fay; Fals wes here foreward so forst is in May, That sonne from the southward wypeth away; Moni proud Scot therof mene may To yere. 45 Nes never Scotlond With dunt of monnes hond Allinge aboht so duere.
The bisshop of Glascou y chot he wes ylaht, The bisshop of Seint-Andre, bothe he beth ycaht, 50 The abbot of Scon with the kyng nis nout saht, Al here purpos ycome hit ys to naht, Thurh ryhte: Hii were unwis When hii thohte pris 55 Ayeyn huere kyng to fyhte.
Thourh consail of thes bisshopes ynemned byfore, Sire Robert the Bruytz furst kyng wes ycore; He mai everuche day ys fon him se byfore, Yef hee mowen him hente, i chot he bith forlore, 60 Sauntz fayle.
Soht for te sugge, Duere he shal abugge That he bigon batayle.
Hii that him crounede proude were ant bolde, 65 Hii maden kyng of somer, so hii ner ne sholde,[L66]
Hii setten on ys heved a croune of rede golde, Ant token him a kyneyerde, so me kyng sholde, To deme.
Tho he wes set in see, 70 Lutel god couthe he Kyneriche to yeme.
Nou kyng Hobbe in the mures yongeth, For te come to toune nout him ne longeth; The barouns of Engelond, myhte hue him grype, 75 He him wolde techen on Englysshe to pype, Thourh streynthe: Ne be he ner so stout, Yet he bith ysoht out O brede ant o leynthe. 80
Sire Edward of Carnarvan, (Jhesu him save ant see!) Sire Emer de Valence, gentil knyht ant free, Habbeth ysuore huere oht that, _par la grace dee_, Hee wolleth ous delyvren of that false contree, Yef hii conne. 85 Muche hath Scotlond forlore, Whet alast, whet bifore, Ant lutel pris wonne.
Nou i chulle fonge ther ich er let, Ant tellen ou of Frisel, ase ich ou byhet. 90 In the batayle of Kyrkenclyf Frysel wes ytake; Ys continaunce abatede eny bost to make Biside Strivelyn; Knyhtes ant sweynes, Fremen ant theynes, 95 Monye with hym.
So hii weren byset on everuche halve, Somme slaye were, ant somme dreynte hemselve; Sire Johan of Lyndeseye nolde nout abyde, He wod into the water, his feren him bysyde, 100 To adrenche.
Whi nolden hii be war?
Ther nis non ayeyn star:-- Why nolden hy hem bythenche?
This wes byfore seint Bartholomeus masse, 105 That Frysel wes ytake, were hit more other lasse; To sire Thomas of Multon, gentil baron ant fre, Ant to sire Johan Jose, bytake tho wes he To honde: He wes yfetered weel, 110 Bothe with yrn ant wyth steel, To bringen of Scotlonde.
Sone therafter the tydynge to the kyng com; He him sende to Londone, with mony armed grom; He com yn at Newegate, y telle yt ou aplyht, 115 A gerland of leves on ys hed ydyht, Of grene; For he shulde ben yknowe, Bothe of heye ant of lowe, For treytour, y wene. 120
Yfetered were ys legges under his horse wombe, Bothe with yrn ant with stel mankled were ys honde, A gerland of peruenke set on his heved; Muche wes the poer that him wes byreved In londe: 125 So god me amende, Lutel he wende So be broht in honde.
Sire Herbert of Norham, feyr knyht ant bold,[L129]
For the love of Frysel ys lyf wes ysold; 130 A wajour he made, so hit wes ytold, Ys heved of to smhyte, yef me him brohte in hold, Wat so bytyde: Sory wes he thenne Tho he myhte him kenne 135 Thourh the toun ryde.
Thenne seide ys scwyer a word anon ryht, "Sire, we beth dede, ne helpeth hit no wyht,"
(Thomas de Boys the scwyer wes to nome,) "Nou, y chot, our wajour turneth us to grome, 140 So ybate."
Y do ou to wyte, Here heved wes of-smyte, Byfore the Tour-gate.
This wes on oure Levedy even, for sothe ych understonde;[L145] 145 The justices seten for the knyhtes of Scotlonde, Sire Thomas of Multone, an hendy knyht ant wys,[L147]
Ant sire Rauf of Sondwyche, that muchel is hold in prys,[L148]
Ant sire Johan Abel; Mo y mihte telle by tale, 150 Bothe of grete ant of smale, Ye knowen suythe wel.
Thenne saide the justice, that gentil is ant fre, "Sire Simond Frysel, the kynges traytour hast thou be, In water ant in londe, that monie myhten se. 155 What sayst thou thareto, hou wolt thou quite the?
So foul he him wiste, Nede waron truste For to segge nay. 160
Ther he wes ydemed, so hit wes londes lawe; For that he wes lordswyk, furst he wes to-drawe; Upon a retheres hude forth he wes ytuht: Sum while in ys time he wes a modi knyht, In huerte. 165 Wickednesse ant sunne, Hit is lutel wunne That maketh the body smerte.
For al is grete poer, yet he wes ylaht; Falsnesse ant swykedom, al hit geth to naht; 170 Tho he wes in Scotlond, lutel wes ys thoht Of the harde jugement that him wes bysoht In stounde.
He wes foursithe forswore To the kyng ther bifore,[L175] 175 Ant that him brohte to grounde.
With feteres ant with gyves i chot he wes to-drowe, From the Tour of Londone, that monie myhte knowe, In a curtel of burel, a selkethe wyse, Ant a gerland on ys heved of the newe guyse, 180 Thurh Cheepe; Moni mon of Engelond For to se Symond Thideward con lepe.
Tho he com to galewes, furst he wes anhonge, 185 Al quic byheveded, thah him thohte longe; Seththe he wes y-opened, is boweles ybrend, The heved to Londone-brugge wes send, To shonde: So ich ever mote the, 190 Sumwhile wende he Ther lutel to stonde.
He rideth thourh the site, as y telle may, With gomen ant wyth solas, that wes here play; To Londone-brugge hee nome the way, 195 Moni wes the wyves chil that theron laketh a day, Ant seide, Alas, That he wes ibore, Ant so villiche forlore, So feir mon ase he was! 200
Nou stont the heved above the tu-brugge, Faste bi Waleis, soth for te sugge; After socour of Scotlond longe he mowe prye, Ant after help of Fraunce, (wet halt hit to lye?) Ich wene. 205 Betere him were in Scotlond, With is ax in ys hond, To pleyen o the grene.
Ant the body hongeth at the galewes faste, With yrnene claspes longe to laste; 210 For te wyte wel the body, ant Scottysh to garste, Foure ant twenti ther beoth to sothe ate laste, By nyhte: Yef eny were so hardi The body to remuy, 215 Al so to dyhte.
Were sire Robert the Bruytz ycome to this londe, Ant the erl of Asseles, that harde is an honde,[L218]
Alle the other pouraille, forsothe ich understonde, Mihten be ful blythe ant thonke godes sonde, 220 Wyth ryhte; Thenne myhte uch mon Bothe riden ant gon In pes withoute vyhte.
The traytours of Scotland token hem to rede 225 The barouns of Engelond to brynge to dede: Charles of Fraunce, so moni mon tolde, With myht ant with streynthe hem helpe wolde, His thonkes.
Tprot, Scot, for thi strif! 230 Hang up thyn hachet ant thi knyf, Whil him lasteth the lyf With the longe shonkes.
66. Bruce's wife, it is said, replied to her husband, when he was boasting of his royal rank, "You are indeed a summer king, but you will scarce be a winter one," alluding to the ephemeral sovereignty of the Lord of the May.
129. He was one of the Scottish prisoners in the Tower; and is said to have been so confident of the safety or success of Sir Simon Fraser, that he had offered to lay his own head on the block, if that warrior suffered himself to be taken; and (however involuntarily) it seems he kept his word. Vide M. West. 460.--RITSON. MS. Morham.
145. 7th September.
147. Sir Thomas Multon was one of the justices of the King's Bench in 1289. Sir Ralph Sandwich was made Baron of the Exchequer in 1312.--RITSON.
148. MS. told.
175. Sir Simon was one of those whom King Edward brought out of Scotland in 1296, when that kingdom was first subdued. He remained a close prisoner about eight months, and was then freed, on entering into the usual engagement with the conqueror, to which, however, it is certain he did not think proper to adhere; esteeming it, perhaps, more sinful to keep such a forced obligation than to take it. Abercrombie, i.
218. The Earl of Athol, John de Strathbogie. Attempting to escape by sea, he was driven back by a storm, taken, and conveyed to London, where he was tried, condemned, and, with circumstances of great barbarity, put to death, 7th, &c. November, 1306. (M. West. 461.) Which proves the present ballad to have been composed between that time and the 7th of September preceding.--RITSON.