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Ive nine milk-ews, my Marion,
A cow and a brawney quay ;
Just on her bridal day.
And waistcote o' London broun ;
Quhaneir ze gang to the toun.
Ise een gae
Ime yong and stout, my Marion,
None dance lik mee on the greine ; And gin ze forsak me, Marion,
wi' Jeane, Sae put on zour pearlins, Marion,
And kirtle oth cramasie;
I sall cum west, and see zee.
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. 1. There was a shepherds daughter
Came tripping on the waye;
Which caused her to staye.
Good morrowe to you, beauteous maide,
These words pronounced hee :
If Ive not my wille of thee.
The Lord forbid, the maide replyde,
shold waxe so wode!
He wold not he withstood.'
wille of mee,
Tell me what is your name?
Some do call mee Jacke, sweet heart,
And some do call mee Jille ;
They call me Wilfulle Wille.
Ile sett his foot into the stirrup,
And awaye then he did ride;
And ranne close by his side.
But when she came to the brode water,
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? * And she was ever too loving a maide
To saye, sir knighte abide.
When she came to the kings faire courtę,
She knocked at the ring;
To let this faire maide in.
Now Christ you save, my gracious liege,
Now Christ you save and see,
This dàye hath robbed mee.
What What hath he robbed thee of, sweet heart?
Of purple or of pall?
From off thy finger small ?
Of purple nor of pall :
Which grieves mee worst of all.
Now if he be a batchelor,
His bodye Ile give to thee;
High hanged he shall bee.
By one, by two, by three;
But nowe the last came hee.
He brought her downe full fortye pounde,
Tyed up withinne a glove :
Go, seeke thee another love.
O Ile have none of your gold, she sayde,
Nor Ile have none of your fee ;
The king hath granted mee.
Ver. 50. His bodye Ile give to thee] This was agreeable to the feudal customs: The lord had a right to give a wife to his vassaly. See Shakespeare's “ All's well, that ends well,”
Sir William ranne and fetchd her then
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, But your own bodye I must have,
The king hath granted mee.
Would I had dranke the water cleare,
When I did drinke the wine, Rather than any shepherds brat
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 !
A shepherds brat even as I was,
You mote have let me bee,
To crave any love of thee.
He sett her on a milk-white steede,
And himself upon a grayé ;
And soe they rode awaye.