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Then to his Lucy's new-made grave,
Convey'd by trembling swains,
For ever now remains.
Oft at their grave the constant hind
And plighted maid are seen ;
They deck the sacred green.
But, swain forsworn, whoe'er thou art,
This hallow'd spot forbear; Remember Colin's dreadful fate,
And fear to meet him there.
THE BOY AND THE MANTLE,
AS REVISED AND ALTERED BY A MODERN HAND.
Mr. Warton, in his ingenious Observations on Spenser, has given his opinion, that the fiction of the Boy and the Mantle is taken from an old French piece intitled LE Court MANTEL, quoted by M. de St. Palaye, in his curious “Memoires sur l'ancienne Chevalerie,” Paris, 1759, 2 tom. 12mo, who tells us the story resembles that of Ariosto’s inchanted cup. 'Tis possible our English poet may have taken the hint of this subject from that old French Romance; but he does not appear to have copied it in the manner of execution : to which (if one may judge from the specimen given in the Memoires) that of the Ballad does not bear the least resemblance. After all, 'tis most likely that all the old stories concerning King Arthur are originally of British growth, and that what the French and other Southern nations have of this kind were at first exported from this island. See Memoires de l'Acad. des Inscrip. tom. xx. p. 352.
In the “FABLIAUX OU Contes," 1781, 5 tom. 12mo, of M. Le Grand (tom. I. p. 54), is printed a modern Version of the Old Tale Le Court Mantel, under a new title, Le Manteau maltaillé, which contains the story of this Ballad much enlarged, so far as regards the MANTLE, but without any mention of the Knife or the Horn.
A prince of passing might;
Beset with many a knight.
And there he kept his Christmas
With mirth and princely cheare, When, lo! a straunge and cunning boy
Before him did appeare.
A kirtle and a mantle
This boy had him upon,
Full daintily bedone.
He had a sarke of silk
About his middle meet ;
He did king Arthur greet.
“God speed thee, brave king Arthur,
“Thus feasting in thy bowre; “ And Guenever thy goodly queen,
« That fair and peerlesse flowre.
“Ye gallant lords, and lordings,
“I wish you all take heed, “Lest, what ye deem a blooming rose
“ Should prove a cankred weed.”
Then straitway from his bosome
A little wand he drew; And with it.eke a mantle
Of wondrous shape and hew. VOL. III.
« Now 30
« Now have thou here, king Arthur,
«. Have this here of mee, “ And give unto thy comely queen,
All-shapen as you see.
Down she threw the mantle,
Ne longer would not stay; But, storming like a fury,
To her chamber flung away.
She curst the whoreson weaver,
That had the mantle wrought: And doubly curst the froward impe,
Who thither had it brought.
“I had rather live in desarts
“ Beneath the green-wood tree : sr Than here, base king, among thy groomes, ,
“ The sport of them and thee."