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Full text of "Ballads and poems illustrating English history"

Pitt Press Series 



BALLADS AND POEMS 

ILLUSTRATING 
ENGLISH HISTORY 



CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS 

tLotl&on FETTER LANE, E.G. 

C. F. CLAY, MANAGER 




OHOmburglj : 100, PRINCES STREET 

Berlin: A. ASHER AND CO. 

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Sambas anto Calcutta: MACMILLAN AND Co., LTD. 

aToronta: J. M. DENT AND SONS, LTD. 

THE MARUZEN-KABUSHIKI-KAISHA 



All rights reserved 



BALLADS AND POEMS 

ILLUSTRATING 
ENGLISH HISTORY 



Edited by 
FRANK SIDGWICK 



CAMBRIDGE: 

at the University Press 

1913 



PR 

im 

S5 



Edition 1907 
Reprinted 1907, 1908. 
1909, 1912, 1913. 




S72022 



PEEFACE. 

A NUMBER of the poems in this book are to be 
found in many similar collections of historical 
poems, and only the limits imposed by the law of 
copyright have prevented the inclusion of others, such 
as Tennyson's Revenge. It is hoped, however, that this 
deficiency may be more than compensated by the 
presence of many less hackneyed poems, and in particu 
lar of several fine ballads, some of which have hitherto 
not been put before young pupils. While it must be 
admitted that these are not conspicuous for historical 
fidelity, I venture to think that their literary interest 
is a distinct advantage for educational purposes; and 
a word or two of guidance to teachers who use this 
book may not be out of place. 

Firstly, every piece is meant to be learned by 
heart, and half a dozen at least have tunes. Secondly, 
the distinctions between the " artistic " poems, the 
traditional ballads, and the "popular" contemporary 
songs, should be kept clearly in the pupil's mind. 
Thirdly, seeing that this mixture of styles has neces 
sitated an arrangement by chronological order of 
subject-matter, each piece should be so dealt with that 



VI PREFACE 

the pupil realises the conditions under which it was 
written. To this end I have added, to the notes on the 
"artistic" poems, short accounts of their respective 
authors, and have elaborated the notes on the tradi 
tional and "popular " poems and ballads. Proper handl 
ing of certain ballads will arouse interest in the methods 
of oral tradition. In the note to King John and the 
Abbot of Canterbury a hint, easily expanded, is given 
of the vogue which such folk-tales may enjoy. The 
poems by Hawker and Wolfe have interesting literary 
histories, which serve to demonstrate that " artistic " 
poems may occasionally undergo experiences similar to 
those of " popular " verse. 

The best method of expounding each poem, accord 
ing as it narrates, disguises, or illustrates history, will 
be easily decided by the teacher, who will find that the 
fulness or paucity of the notes is in inverse ratio to the 
amount of information ordinarily accessible in history- 
books. Etymological notes are almost entirely omitted, 
in the belief that interest in the growth of a language 
is of later development than that interest in the growth 
of a nation and its literature which this book 
endeavours to stimulate. 

F. S. 
January 1907. 



CONTENTS. 

A.D. PAOB 

61 Boadicea W. COWPBB 1 

1020 King Canute W. M. THACKERAY 3 

1120 He Never Smiled Again .... MBS. HEMANS 8 

King John and the Abbot of Canterbury . TBAD. BALLAD 9 

1265 Lament for Simon de Montfort . Tu. BY G. ELLIS 13 

Eobin Hood and the Three Squires . TBAD. BALLAD 16 

Bold Eobin T. L. PEACOCK 20 

1346 Durham Field TBAD. BALLAD 22 

1388 Chevy Chase TBAD. BALLAD 31 

1411 The Battle of Harlaw .... TBAD. BALLAD 41 

1415 The Agincourt Song . . CONTEHPOBABY POEM 45 

1415 King Henry Va Conquest of France . TBAD. BALLAD 46 

1415 Agincourt M. DBAYTON 49 

1480 The Bose of England . . . . TBAD. BALLAD 53 

1511 Sir Andrew Barton TBAD. BALLAD 58 

1513 Flodden Field TBAD. BALLAD 70 

1513 Edinburgh after Flodden . . W. E. AYTOUN 72 

1530 Dick o' the Cow TBAD. BALLAD 86 

1568 Earl Bothwell TBAD. BALLAD 95 

1569 The Rising in the North . . . TBAD. BALLAD 97 

1584 Mary Ambree TBAD. BALLAD 103 

158- Brave Lord Willoughby ..... ASON. 106 



Vlll CONTENTS 

A.D. PAGE 

1588 The Armada ..... LORD MACAULAY 109 

1588 The Defeat of the Spanish Armada . . ANON. 114 

1595 The Fame of Sir Francis Drake . . . ANON. 116 

1605 Captain Ward and the Rainbow . . TRAD. BALLAD 116 

1643 When the King enjoys his own again . M. PARKEB 120 

1644 Sir Nicholas at Marston Moor . . W. M. PBAKD 122 

1645 The Battle of Naseby . . . LOBD MACAULAY 125 
1648 On the Lord General Fairfax . . JOHN MILTON 129 
1650 Cromwell's Beturn from Ireland . . A. MAKVELL 130 

1652 To Cromwell JOHN MILTON 134 

1666 The Fire of London .... JOHN DRYDEN 135 

1688 The Song of the Western Men . . B. S. HAWKER 140 

1689 The Burial March of Dundee. . W. E. ATTOUN 141 

1702 Admiral Benbow ANON. 145 

1704 After Blenheim ..... B. SOCTHEY 147 

1720 The Vicar of Bray ANON. 149 

1773 The Boston Tea-Party ... O. W. HOLMES 152 

1782 The Loss of the Royal George . . W. COWPER 155 

1801 The Battle of the Baltic . . . T. CAMPBELL 157 

1805 The Happy Warrior W. WORDSWOBTH 159 

1807 Ye Mariners of England . . . . T. CAMPBELL 162 

1809 The Burial of Sir John Moore . CHABLES WOLFS 164 

1815 Waterloo LORD BYBON 165 

1815 England's Dead MRS. HEMANS 169 

1837 Victoria's Tears -. MBS. BROWNING 171 

1852 Ode on the Death of the Duke of Wellington 

LOBD TENNYSON 373 

1854 The Charge of the Light Brigade . LOBD TENNYSON 182 

NOTES 185 



BALLADS AND POEMS 

ILLUSTRATING ENGLISH HISTORY 

BOADICBA 
(A.D. 61) 

When the British warrior Queen, 
Bleeding from the Roman rods, 

Sought, with an indignant mien, 
Counsel of her country's gods, 

Sage beneath a spreading oak, 

Sat the Druid, hoary chief, 
Every burning word he spoke 

Full of rage, and full of grief. 

"Princess! if our aged eyes 

Weep upon thy matchless wrongs, 10 

J Tis because resentment ties 

All the terrors of our tongues. 

"Rome shall perish write that word 
In the blood that she has spilt j 

Perish, hopeless and abhorr'd, 
Deep in ruin as in guilt. 

8. 1 



BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Rome, for empire far renown' d, 
Tramples on a thousand states; 

Soon her pride shall kiss the ground 
Hark! the Gaul is at her gates 1 20 

"Other Romans shall arise, 

Heedless of a soldier's name; 
Sounds, not arms, shall win the prize 

Harmony the path to fame. 

"Then the progeny that springs 

From the forests of our land, 
Arm'd with thunder, clad with wings, 

Shall a wider world command. 

"Regions Caesar never knew 

Thy posterity shall sway; 3 

Where his eagles never flew, 

None invincible as they." 

Such the bard's prophetic words, 

Pregnant with celestial fire, 
Bending as he swept the chords 

Of his sweet but awful lyre. 

She, with all a monarch's pride, 

Felt them in her bosom glow: 
Rush'd to battle, fought, and died; 

Dying, hurl'd them at the foe. 4 

"Ruffians, pitiless as proud, 

Heaven awards the vengeance due; 

Empire is on us bestow'd, 

Shame and ruin wait for you." 

WILLIAM COWPER. 



KING CANUTE o 

KING- CANUTE 
(1020) 

King Canute was weary-hearted; he had reigned for 

years a score, 
Battling, struggling, pushing, fighting, killing much 

and robbing more; 
And he thought upon his actions, walking by the 

wild sea-shore. 

'Twixt the chancellor and bishop walked the king with 

steps sedate, 
Chamberlains and grooms came after, silversticks and 

goldsticks great, 
Chaplains, aides-de-camp, and pages all the officers 

of state, 

Sliding after like his shadow, pausing when he chose 

to pause; 
If a frown his face contracted, straight the courtiers 

dropped their jaws; 
If to laugh the king was minded, out they burst in 

loud hee-haws. 

But that day a something vexed him, that was clear 
to old and young : 10 

Thrice his grace had yawned at table, when his 
favourite gleemen sung, 

Once the queen would have consoled him, but he bade 
her hold her tongue. 

1-2 



4 BALLADS AND POEMS 

" Something ails my gracious master," cried the keeper 

of the seal. 
" Sure, my lord, it is the lampreys served at dinner, or 

the veal?" 
"Pshaw!" exclaimed the angry monarch. "Keeper, 

'tis not that I feel. 

" 'Tis the heart, and not the dinner, fool, that doth my 

rest impair: 
Can a king be great as I am, prithee, and yet know no 

care? 
Oh, I'm sick, and tired, and weary." Some one cried, 

" The king's arm-chair ! " 

Then towards the lackeys turning, quick my lord the 

keeper nodded, 
Straight the king's great chair was brought him, by 

two footmen able-bodied; 20 

Languidly he sank into it : it was comfortably wadded. 

"Leading on my fierce companions," cried he, "over 

storm and brine, 
I have fought and I have conquered! Where was 

glory like to mine ? " 
Loudly all the courtiers echoed : " Where is glory like 

to thine?" 

" What avail me all my kingdoms ? Weary am I 

now and old ; 
Those fair sons I have begotten, long to see me dead 

and cold; 
Would I were, and quiet buried, underneath the silent 

mould 1 



KING CANUTE 5 

"Oil, remorse, the writhing serpent! at my bosom 

tears and bites; 
Horrid, horrid things I look on, though I put out all 

the lights; 
Ghosts of ghastly recollections troop about my bed at 

nights. 3 

"Cities burning, convents blazing, red with sacrilegious 

fires; 
Mothers weeping, virgins screaming vainly for their 

slaughtered sires." 
" Such a tender conscience," cries the bishop, " every 

one admires. 

" But for such unpleasant bygones, cease, my gracious 

lord, to search, 
They're forgotten and forgiven by our Holy Mother 

Church ; 
Never, never does she leave her benefactors in the 

lurch. 

" Look ! the land is crowned with minsters, which 

your grace's bounty raised; 
Abbeys filled with holy men, where you and Heaven 

are daily praised: 
You, my lord, to think of dying? on my conscience I'm 

amazed ! " 

" Nay, I feel," replied King Canute, " that my end is 
drawing near." 4 

" Don't say so," exclaimed the courtiers (striving each 
to squeeze a tear). 

" Sure your grace is strong and lusty, and may live 
this fifty year." 



6 BALLADS AND POEMS 

" Live these fifty years ! " the bishop roared, with 

actions made to suit. 
" Are you mad, my good lord keeper, thus to speak of 

King Canute ! 
Men have lived a thousand years, and sure his majesty 

will do 't 

"Adam, Enoch, Lamech, Cainan, Mahalaleel, 

Methuselah, 
Lived nine hundred years apiece, and mayn't the king 

as well as they?" 
" Fervently," exclaimed the keeper, " fervently I trust 

he may." 

" He to die ? " resumed the bishop. " He a mortal like 

to us? 
Death was not for him intended, though communis 

omnibus : 50 

Keeper, you are irreligious, for to talk and cavil thus. 

" With his wondrous skill in healing ne'er a doctor can 

compete, 
Loathsome lepers, if he touch them, start up clean upon 

their feet; 
Surely he could raise the dead up, did his Highness 

think it meet. 

" Did not once the Jewish captain stay the sun upon 

the hill, 
And, the while he slew the f oemen, bid the silver moon 

stand still ? 
So, no doubt, could gracious Canute, if it were his 

sacred will." 






KING CANUTE 7 

" Might I stay the sun above us, good Sir Bishop ? " 

Canute cried; 
"Could I bid the silver moon to pause upon her 

heavenly ride ? 
If the moon obeys my orders, sure I can command the 

tide. 60 

" Will the advancing waves obey me, bishop, if I make 

the sign ? " 
Said the bishop, bowing lowly, " Land and sea, my 

lord, are thine." 
Canute turned towards the ocean " Back ! " he said, 

" thou foaming brine ! 

" From the sacred shore I stand on, I command thee to 

retreat ; 
Venture not, thou stormy rebel, to approach thy 

master's seat : 
Ocean, be thou still ! I bid thee come not nearer to my 

feet 1 " 

But the sullen ocean answered with a louder, deeper 

roar, 
And the rapid waves drew nearer, falling sounding on 

the shore; 
Back the keeper and the bishop, back the king and 

courtiers bore. 

And he sternly bade them never more to kneel to 
human clay, 70 

But alone to praise and worship That which earth and 
seas obey: 

And his golden crown of empire never wore he from 
that day. 

W. M. THACKERAY. 



BALLADS AND POEMS 

HE NEVER SMILED AGAIN 
(1120) 

The bark that held a prince went down, 

The sweeping waves rolled on; 
And what was England's glorious crown 

To him that wept a son? 
He lived for life may long be borne 

Ere sorrow break its chain; 
Why comes not death to those who mourn ?- 

He never smiled again! 

There stood proud forms around his throne, 

The stately and the brave; 
Bat which could fill the place of one, 

That one beneath the wave ? 
Before him passed the young and fair, 

In pleasure's reckless train; 
But seas dashed o'er his son's bright hair 

He never smiled again! 

He sat where festal bowls went round, 

He heard the minstrel sing; 
He saw the tourney's victor crowned 

Amidst the knightly ring; 
A murmur of the restless deep 

Was blent with every strain, 
A voice of winds that would not sleep 

He never smiled again! 



HE NEVER SMILED AGAIN 9 

Hearts, in that time, closed o'er the trace 

Of vows once fondly poured; 
And strangers took the kinsman's place 

At many a joyous board; 
Graves, which true love had bathed with tears, 

Were left to Heaven's bright rain; 30 

Fresh hopes were born for other years 

He never smiled again I 

MBS. HEMANS. 



KING JOHN AND THE ABBOT 
OF CANTERBURY 

An ancient story I'll tell you anon 
Of a notable prince, that was called King John; 
And he ruled England with main and with might, 
For he did great wrong, and maintain'd little right. 

And I'll tell you a story, a story so merry, 
Concerning the Abbot of Canterbury; 
How for his house-keeping, and high renown, 
They rode post for him to London town. 

An hundred men, the king did hear say, 

The abbot kept in his house every day; 10 

And fifty gold chains, without any doubt, 

In velvet coats waited the abbot about. 

"How now, father abbot, I hear it of thee, 
Thou keepest a far better house than me, 
And for thy house-keeping, and high renown, 
I fear thou work'st treason against my crown." 



10 BALLADS AND POEMS 

" My liege," quo' the abbot, " I would it were known, 
I never spend nothing but what is my own; 
And I trust, your grace will do me no dere, 
For spending of my own true-gotten gear." 20 

"Yes, yes, father abbot, thy fault it is high, 
And now for the same thou needest must die; 
For except thou canst answer me questions three, 
Thy head shall be smitten from thy body. 

"And first," quo' the king, "when I'm in this stead, 
With my crown of gold so fair on my head, 
Among all my liege-men so noble of birth, 
Thou must tell me to one penny what I am worth. 

"Secondly, tell me, without any doubt, 
How soon I may ride the whole world about; 30 
And at the third question thou must not shrink, 
But tell me here truly what I do think." 

"0, these are hard questions for my shallow wit, 
Nor I cannot answer your grace as yet; 
But if" you will give me but three weeks' space, 
I'll do my endeavour to answer your grace." 

"Now three weeks' space to thee will I give, 
And that is the longest time thou hast to live; 
For if thou dost not answer my questions three, 
Thy lands and thy livings are forfeit to me." 4 

Away rode the abbot all sad at that word, 
And he rode to Cambridge, and Oxenford; 
But never a doctor there was so wise, 
That could with his learning an answer devise. 



KING JOHN AND THE ABBOT OF CANTERBURY 11 

Then home rode the abbot of comfort so cold, 
And he met his shepherd a going to fold: 
"How now, my lord abbot, you are welcome home; 
What news do you bring us from good king John?" 

"Sad news, sad news, shepherd, I must give; 
That I have but three days more to live : 50 

For if I do not answer him questions three, 
My head will be smitten from my body. 

"The first is to tell him there in that stead, 
With his crown of gold so fair on his head, 
Among all his liege-men so noble of birth, 
To within one penny of what he is worth. 

"The second, to tell him, without any doubt, 
How soon he may ride this whole world about: 
And at the third question I must not shrink, 
But tell him there truly what he does think." 60 

"Now cheer up, sir abbot, did you never hear yet, 
That a fool he may learn a wise man wit? 
Lend me horse, and serving-men, and your apparel, 
And I'll ride to London to answer your quarrel. 

"Nay, frown not, if it hath been told unto me, 

I am like your lordship as ever may be: 

And if you will but lend me your gown, 

There is none shall know us at fair London town." 

"Now horses, and serving-men thou shalt have, 
With sumptuous array most gallant and brave; 70 
With crozier, and mitre, and rochet, and cope, 
Fit to appear 'fore our father the Pope." 



12 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Now welcome, sir abbot," the king he did say, 
"'Tis well thou'rt come back to keep thy day; 
For an if thou canst answer my questions three, 
Thy life and thy living both savSd shall be. 

"And first, when thou seest me here in this stead, 
With my crown of gold so fair on my head, 
Among all my liege-men so noble of birth, 
Tell me to one penny what I am worth." 80 

"For thirty pence our Saviour was sold 
Among the false Jews, as I have been told; 
And twenty-nine is the worth of thee, 
For I think thou art one penny worser than he." 

The king he laughed, and swore by St. Bittel, 
"I did not think I had been worth so little! 
Now secondly tell me, without any doubt, 
How soon I may ride this whole world about." 

" You must rise with the sun, and ride with the same, 
Until x the next morning he riseth again; 90 

And then your grace need not make any doubt, 
But in twenty-four hours you'll ride it about." 

The king he laughed, and swore by St. John, 
"I did not think it could be gone so soon! 
Now from the third question thou must not shrink, 
But tell me here truly what I do think." 

"Yea, that I shall do, and make your grace merry: 
You think I'm the abbot of Canterbury; 
But I'm his poor shepherd, as plain you may see, 
That am come to beg pardon for him and for me." 100 






KING JOHN AND THE ABBOT OF CANTERBURY 13 

The king lie laughed, and swore by the mass, 
"I'll make thee lord abbot this day in his place!" 
"Now nay, my liege, be not in such speed, 
For alack, I can neither write, nor read." 

"Four nobles a week, then, I will give thee, 
For this merry jest thou hast shown unto me; 
And tell the old abbot when thou comest home, 
Thou hast brought him a pardon from good king 
John." 

Traditional Ballad. 



LAMENT FOE SIMON DE MONTFORT 
(Battle of Evesham, 1265) 

In song my grief shall find relief, 

Sad is my verse and rude; 
I sing in tears our gentle peers 

Who fell for England's good. 
Our peace they sought, for us they fought, 

For us they dared to die; 
And where they sleep, a mangled heap, 

Their wounds for vengeance cry. 

On Evesham's plain is Montfort slain, 

Well skilVd the war to guide; 10 

Where streams his gore shall all deplore 
Fair England's flower and pride. 



14 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Ere Tuesday's sun its course had run 

Our noblest chiefs had bled. 
While rush'd to fight each gallant knight, 

Their dastard vassals fled. 
Still undismayed, with trenchant blade 

They hew'd their desperate way: 
Not strength or skill to Edward's will, 

But numbers gave the day. 20 

On Evesham's plain, &c. 

Yet, by the blow that laid thee low, 

Brave earl, one palm was given; 
Nor less at thine than Becket's shrine 

Shall rise our vows to heaven! 
Our church and laws, your common cause, 

'Twas his the church to save, 
Our rights restor'd, thou, generous lord, 

Shalt triumph in thy grave. 
On Evesham's plain, &c. 3 

Dispenser true, the good sir Hugh, 

Our justice and our friend, 
Borne down with wrong, amidst the throng, 

Has met his wretched end. 
Sir Henry's fate need I relate, 

Our Leicester's gallant son, 
Or many a score of heroes more 

By Gloucester's hate undone? 
On Evesham's plain, &c. 

Each righteous lord who braved the sword, 4 

And for our safety died, 
With conscience pure shall aye endure, 

Our martyr'd saint beside. 



LAMENT FOB SIMON DE MONTFORT 15 

That martyr'd saint was never faint 

To ease the poor man's care; 
With gracious will he shall fulfil 

Our just and earnest prayer. 

On Evesham's plain, &c. 

On Montfort's breast a hair-cloth vest 

His pious soul proclaim'd; 50 

With ruffian hand, the ruthless band 

That sacred emblem maim'd : 
And, to assuage their impious rage, 

His lifeless corpse defaced, 
Whose powerful arm long saved from harm 

The realm his virtues graced. 

On Evesham's plain, &c. 

Brave martyr'd chief! no more our grief 

For thee or thine shall flow; 
Among the bless'd in heaven ye rest 60 

From all your toils below. 
But for the few, the gallant crew, 

Who here in bonds remain, 
Christ condescend their woes to end, 

And break the tyrant's chain ! 

On Evesham's plain, &c. 

Tr. by G. Ellis. 



16 BALLADS AND POEMS 



There are twelve months in all the year, 

As I hear many men say, 
But the merriest month in all the year 

Is the merry month of May. 

Now Robin Hood is to Nottingham gone, 

With a link a down and a day, 
And there he met a silly old woman, 

Was weeping on the way. 

"What news, what news, thou silly old woman? 

What news hast thou for me ? " 10 

Said she, "There's three squires in Nottingham town 

To-day is condemned to die." 

" what have they done ? " said Robin Hood, 

"I pray thee tell to me." 
"It's for slaying of the King's fallow deer, 

Bearing their long-bows with thee." 

Now Robin Hood is to Nottingham gone, 

With a link a down and a day, 
And there he met with a silly old palmer, 

Was walking along the highway. 20 

"What news, what news, thou silly old man? 

What news, I do thee pray." 
Said he, "Three squires in Nottingham town 

Are condemned to die this day." 



ROBIN HOOD AND THE THREE SQUIRES 17 

"Come, change thy apparel with me, old man, 

Come, change thy apparel for mine; 
Here is forty shillings in good silver 

Go drink it in beer or wine." 

"0 thine apparel is good," he said, 

"And mine is ragged and torn; 30 

Wherever you go, wherever you ride, 

Laugh ne'er an old man to scorn." 

"Come change thy apparel with me, old churl, 

Come change thy apparel with mine; 
Here are twenty pieces of good broad gold, 

Go feast thy brethren with wine." 

Then he put on the old man's hat, 

It stood full high on the crown: 
"The first bold bargain that I come at, 

It shall make thee come down." 40 

Then he put on the old man's cloak, 

Was patched black, blue, and red; 
He thought no shame all the day long 

To wear the bags of bread. 

Then he put on the old man's breeks, 

Was patched from side to side. 
"By the truth of my body," bold Robin can say, 

"This man loved little pride." 

Then he put on the old man's hose, 

Were patched from knee to wrist: 50 

"By the truth of my body," said bold Eobin Hood, 

"I'd laugh if I had any list." 

s. 2 



18 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Then he put on the old man's shoes, 
Were patched both beneath and aboon; 

Then Eobin Hood swore a solemn oath, 
"It's good habit that makes a man." 

Now Eobin Hood is to Nottingham gone, 

With a link a down and a down, 
And there he met with the proud sheriff, 

Was walking along the town. 60 

"0 save, save, O sheriff," he said, 

"O save, and you may see; 
And what will you give to a silly old man 

To-day will your hangman be?" 

" Some suits, some suits," the sheriff he said, 

"Some suits I'll give to thee; 
Some suits, some suits, and pence thirteen 

To-day's a hangman's fee." 

Then Robin he turns him round about, 

And jumps from stock to stone; 70 

"By the truth of my body," the sheriff he said, 

"That's well jumpt, thou nimble old man." 

"I was ne'er a hangman in all my life, 

Nor yet intend to trade; 
But curst be he," said bold Robin, 

"That first a hangman was made. 

I've a bag for meal, and a bag for malt, 
And a bag for barley and corn; 
A bag for bread, and a bag for beef, 
And a bag for my little small horn. 80 



ROBIN HOOD AND THE THREE SQUIRES 19 

"I have a horn in my pocket, 

I got it from Robin Hood; 
And still when I set it to my mouth, 

For thee it blows little good." 

"O wind thy horn, thon proud fellow, 

Of thee I have no doubt; 
I wish that thou give such a blast 

Till both thine eyes fall out." 

The first loud blast that he did blow, 

He blew both loud and shrill; 90 

A hundred and fifty of Robin Hood's men 

Came riding over the hill. 

The next loud blast that he did give, 

He blew both loud and amain; 
And quickly sixty of Robin Hood's men 

Came shining over the plain. 

"0 who are you?" the sheriff he said, 

"Come tripping over the lee?" 
"They're my attendants," brave Robin did say, 

"They'll pay a visit to thee." 100 

They took the gallows from the slack, 

They set it in the glen; 
They hang'd the proud sheriff on that, 

Released their own three men. 

Traditional Ballad. 



2 
6 



20 BALLADS AND POEMS 



BOLD ROBIN. 

Bold Robin has robed him in ghostly attire, 
And forth he is gone like a holy friar, 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down: 
And of two grey friars he soon was aware, 
Regaling themselves with dainty fare, 

All on the fallen leaves so brown. 

" Good morrow, good brothers," said bold Robin Hood, 
"And what make you in good greenwood? 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down: 
Now give me, I pray you, wine and food; 10 

For none can I find in the good greenwood, 

All on the fallen leaves so brown." 

"Good brother," they said, "we would give you full 

fain, 
But we have no more than enough for twain, 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down." 
" Then give me some money," said bold Robin Hood, 
"For none can I find in the good greenwood, 

All on the fallen leaves so brown." 

"No money have we, good brother," said they: 
"Then," said he, "we three for money will pray, 20 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down: 
And whatever shall come at the end of our prayer, 
We three holy friars will piously share, 

All on the fallen leaves so brown." 



BOLD ROBIN 21 

" We will not pray with thee, good brother, God wot ; 
For truly, good brother, thou pleases us not, 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, deny down." 
Then up they both started from Robin to run, 
But down on their knees Robin pulled them each one, 

All on the fallen leaves so brown. 30 

The grey friars prayed with a doleful face, 

But bold Robin prayed with a right merry grace, 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down: 
And when they had prayed, their portmanteau he 

took, 
And from it a hundred good angels he shook 

All on the fallen leaves so brown. 

"The saints," said bold Robin, "have hearkened our 

prayer, 

And here's a good angel apiece for your share; 
If more you would have, you must win ere you wear, 

Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down." 40 
Then he blew his good horn with a musical cheer, 
And fifty green bowmen came trooping full near, 
And away the grey friars they bounded like deer, 

All on the fallen leaves so brown. 

T, L. PEACOCK. 



22 BALLADS AND POEMS 

DURHAM FIELD. 
(1346) 

Lordings, listen and hold you still; 

Hearken to me a little spell; 
I shall you tell of the fairest battle 

That ever in England befell. 

For as it befell in Edward the Third's days, 
In England, where he ware the crown, 

Then all the chief chivalry of England 
They busked and made them boun. 

They chosen all the best archers 

That in England might be found, 10 

And all was to fight with the King of France, 

Within a little stound. 

And when our King was over the water, 

And on the salt sea gone, 
Then tidings into Scotland came 

That all England was gone. 

Bows and arrows they were all forth, 

At home was not left a man 
But shepherds and millers both, 

And priests with shaven crowns. 20 

Then the King of Scots in a study stood, 

As he was a man of great might; 
He sware he would hold his Parliament in leeve 
London, 

If he could ride there right. 



DURHAM FIELD 23 

Then bespake a squire, of Scotland born, 

And said "My liege, apace, 
Before you come to leeve London, 

Full sore you'll rue that race. 

"There been bold yeomen in merry England, 
Husbandmen stiff and strong; 30 

Sharp swords they done wear, 
Bearen bows and arrows long." 

The King was angry at that word; 

A long sword out he drew, 
And there before his royal company 

His own squire he slew. 

Hard hansel had the Scots that day, 

That wrought them woe enow, 
For then durst not a Scot speak a word 

For hanging at a bough. 40 

"The Earl of Anguish, where art thou? 

In my coat-armour thou shalt be, 
And thou shalt lead the forward 

Thorough the English country. 

"Take thee York," then said the King, 

"In stead whereas it doth stand; 
I'll make thy eldest son after thee 

Heir of all Northumberland. 

"The Earl of Vaughan, where be ye? 

In my coat-armour thou shalt be; 50 

The high Peak and Derbyshire 

I give it thee to thy fee." 



24 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Then came in famous Douglas, 

Says "What shall my meed be? 
And I'll lead the vanward, lord, 

Thorough the English country." 

"Take thee "Worcester," said the King, 

"Tewkesbury, Kenilworth, Burton upon Trent; 

Do thou not say another day 
But I have given thee lands and rent. 60 

"Sir Richard of Edinburgh, where are ye? 

A wise man in this war! 
I'll give thee Bristow and the shire 

The time that we come there. 

"My lord Neville, where been ye? 

You must in these wars be; 
I'll give thee Shrewsbury," says the King, 

"And Coventry fair and free. 

"My lord of Hamilton, where art thou? 

Thou art of my kin full nighj 70 

I'll give thee Lincoln and Lincolnshire, 

And that's enough for thee." 

By then came in William Douglas, 

As breme as any boar; 
He kneeled him down upon his knees, 

In his heart he sighed sore. 

Says "I have served you, my lovely liege, 

These thirty winters and four, 
And in the Marshes between England and Scotland, 

I have been wounded and beaten sore. 80 



DUKHAM FIELD 25 

"For all the good service that I have done, 

What shall my meed be? 
And I will lead the vanward 

Thorough the English country." 

"Ask on, Douglas," said the King, 

"And granted it shall be." 
" Why then, I ask little London," says Will Douglas, 

"Gotten if that it be." 

The King was wrath, and rose away; 

Says "Nay, that cannot be! 90 

For that I will keep for my chief chamber, 

Gotten if it be. 

"But take thee North Wales and Westchester, 

The country all round about, 
And rewarded thou shalt be, 

Of that take thou no doubt." 

Five score knights he made on a day, 

And dubb'd them with his hands; 
Rewarded them right worthily 

With the towns in merry England. 100 

And when the fresh knights they were made, 

To battle they busk them boun; 
James Douglas went before, 

And he thought to have won him shoon. 

But they were met in a morning of May 
With the communalty of little England; 

But there 'scaped never a man away, 
Through the might of Christes hand. 



26 BALLADS AND POEMS 

But all only James Douglas; 

In Durham in the field no 

An arrow struck him in the thigh; 

Fast flings he towards the King. 

The King looked toward little Durham, 

Says "All things is not well! 
For James Douglas bears an arrow in his thigh, 

The head of it is of steel. 

"How now, James?" then said the King, 

"How now, how may this be? 
And where been all thy merry men 

That thou took hence with thee?" 120 

"But cease, my King," says James Douglas, 

"Alive is not left a man!" 
"Now by my faith," says the King of the Scots, 

"That gate was evil gone. 

"But I'll revenge thy quarrel well, 

And of that thou may be fain; 
For one Scot will beat five Englishmen, 

If they meeten them on the plain." 

"Now hold your tongue," says James Douglas, 
"For in faith that is not so; 130 

For one Englishman is worth five Scots, 
When they meeten together tho. 

"For they are as eager men to fight 

As a falcon upon a prey; 
Alas! if ever they win the vanward, 

There scapes no man away." 



DURHAM FIELD 27 

"0 peace thy talking," said the King, 

"They be but English knaves, 
But shepherds and millers both, 

And priests with their staves." 140 

The King sent forth one of his heralds of armes 

To view the Englishmen. 
"Be of good cheer," the herald said, 

"For against one we be ten." 

"Who leads those lads?" said the King of Scots, 

"Thou herald, tell thou me." - 
The herald said "The Bishop of Durham 

Is captain of that company. 

"For the Bishop hath spread the King's banner, 
And to battle he busks him boun." 150 

"I swear by St Andrew's bones," says the King, 
"I'll rap that priest on the crown." 

The King looked towards little Durham, 

And that he well beheld, 
That the Earl Percy was well armed, 

With his battle-axe entered the field. 

The King looked again towards little Durham, 

Four ancients there see he; 
There were two standards, six in a valley, 

He could not see them with his eye. 160 

My lord of York was one of them, 

My lord of Carlisle was the other, 
And my lord Fluwilliams, 

The one came with the other. 



28 BALLADS AND POEMS 

The Bishop of Durham commanded his men, 

And shortly he them bade, 
That never a man should go to the field to fight 

Till he had served his God. 

Five hundred priests said mass that day 

In Durham in the field, 170 

And afterwards, as I heard say, 
They bare both spear and shield. 

The Bishop of Durham orders himself to fight 

With his battle-axe in his hand; 
He said "This day now I will fight 

As long as I can stand!" 

"And so will I," said my lord of Carlisle, 

"In this fair morning gay." 
"And so will I," said my lord Fluwilliams, 

"For Mary, that mild may." 180 

Our English archers bent their bows 

Shortly and anon; 
They shot over the Scottish host 

And scantly touched a man. 

" Hold down your hands," said the Bishop of Durham, 

" My archers good and true." 
The second shoot that they shot, 

Full sore the Scots it rue. 

The Bishop of Durham spoke on high 

That both parties might hear. 190 

"Be of good cheer, my merry men all, 
The Scots flien and changen their cheer." 



DURHAM FIELD 29 

But as they saiden, so they diden, 

They fell on heapes high; 
Our Englishmen laid on with their bows 

As fast as they might dree. 

The King of Scots in a study stood 

Amongst his company; 
An arrow struck him thorough the nose, 

And thorough his armoury. 200 

The King went to a marsh-side 

And light beside his steed; 
He leaned him down on his sword-hilts 

To let his nose bleed. 

There followed him a yeoman of merry England, 

His name was John of Copland; 
"Yield thee, traitor!" says Copland then, 

"Thy life lies in my hand." 

"How should I yield me," says the King, 

"And thou art no gentleman?" 210 

"No, by my troth," says Copland there, 
"I am but a poor yeoman. 

"What art thou better than I, sir King? 

Tell me, if that thou can! 
What art thou better than I, sir King, 

Now we be but man to man?" 

The King smote angrily at Copland then, 

Angrily in that stound; 
And then Copland was a bold yeoman, 

And bore the King to the ground. 220 



30 BALLADS AND POEMS 

He set the King upon a palfrey, 

Himself upon a steed; 
He took him by the bridle-rein, 

Towards London he 'gan him lead. 

And when to London that he came, 

The King from France was new come home, 

And there unto the King of Scots 
He said these words anon. 

"How like you my shepherds and my millers? 

My priests with shaven crowns?" 230 

"By my faith, they are the sorest fighting men 

That ever I met on the ground. 

"There was never a yeoman in merry England 
But he was worth a Scottish knight." 

"Ay, by my troth," said King Edward, and laugh, 
"For you fought all against the right." 

But now the prince of merry England 

Worthily under his shield 
Hath taken the King of France, 

At Poictiers in the field. 240 

The prince did present his father with that food, 

The lovely King of France, 
And forward of his journey he is gone. 

God send us all good chance ! 

" You are welcome, brother ! " said the King of Scots, 

"For I am come hither too soon; 
Christ leve that I had taken my way 

Unto the court of Rome!" 



DURHAM FIELD 31 

"And so would I," said the King of France, 
" When I came over the stream, 250 

That I had taken my journey 
Unto Jerusalem!" 

Thus ends the battle of fair Durham, 

In one morning of May, 
The battle of Cre9y, and the battle of Poictiers, 

All within one monthes day. 

Then was wealth and welfare in merry England 

Solaces, game, and glee, 
And every man loved other well, 

And the King loved good yeomanry. 260 

But God that made the grass to grow 

And leaves on greenwood tree, 
Now save and keep our noble King, 

And maintain good yeomanry! 

Traditional Ballad. 



CHEYY CHASE. 
(1388) 

God prosper long our noble King, 

Our lives and safeties all! 
A woeful Hunting once there did 

In Chevy Chase befall. 

To drive the deer, with hound and horn, 

Earl Percy took the way; 
The child may rue, that is unborn, 

The hunting of that day! 



32 BALLADS AND POEMS 

The stout Earl of Northumberland 
A vow to G-od did make, 10 

His pleasure in the Scottish woods, 
Three summer days to take; 

The chiefest harts in Chevy Chase, 

To kill and bear away. 
These tidings to Earl Douglas came 

In Scotland, where he lay. 

Who sent Earl Percy present word, 

He would prevent his sport. 
The English Earl, not fearing that, 

Did to the woods resort 20 

With fifteen hundred bowmen bold, 

All chosen men of might, 
Who knew full well, in time of need, 

To aim their shafts aright. 

The gallant greyhounds swiftly ran, 

To chase the fallow deer. 
On Monday they began to hunt, 

Ere daylight did appear; 

And long before high noon they had 

A hundred fat bucks slain: 30 

Then, having dined, the droviers went 
To rouse the deer again. 

The hounds ran swiftly through the woods, 

The nimble deer to take, 
That with their cries the hills and dales 

An echo shrill did make. 



CHEVY CHASE 33 

Lord Percy to the quarry went, 

To view the tender deer, 
Quoth he, "Earl Douglas promised once 

This day to meet me here: 40 

"But if I thought he would not come, 

No longer would I stay!" 
With that a brave young gentleman 

Thus to the Earl did say: 

" Lo ! yonder doth Earl Douglas come, 

His men in armour bright; 
Full twenty hundred Scottish spears 

All marching in our sight I 

"All men of pleasant Tividale, 

Fast by the river Tweed." 50 

"0, cease your sports!" Earl Percy said, 

"And take your bows with speed; 

" And now with me, my countrymen, 

Your courage forth advance; 
For there was never champion yet, 

In Scotland, nor in France, 

"That ever did on horseback come, 

But and if my hap it were, 
I durst encounter man for man, 

With him to break a spear!" 60 

Earl Douglas, on his milk-white steed, 

Most like a baron bold, 
Rode foremost of his company, 

Whose armour shone like gold. 



34 BALLADS AND POEMS 

" Show me," said he, " whose men ye be, 

That hunt so boldly here 
That, without my consent, do chase 

And kill my fallow deer." 

The first man that did answer make, 
Was noble Percy he, 70 

Who said, "We list not to declare, 
Nor show whose men we be: 

"Yet we will spend our dearest blood, 

Thy chiefest harts to slay." 
Then Douglas swore a solemn oath, 

And thus in rage did say: 

"Ere thus I will outbraved be, 

One of us two shall die: 
I know thee well! An earl thou art; 

Lord Percy, so am I. 80 

"But, trust me, Percy, pity it were, 

And great offence, to kill 
Any of these, our guiltless men, 

For they have done no ill. 

"Let thou and I the battle try; 

And set our men aside." 
"Accursed be he," Earl Percy said, 

" By whom it is denied ! " 

Then stepped a gallant squire forth, 

Witherington was his name, 90 

Who said, "I would not have it told 
To Henry our King, for shame, 



CHEVY CHASE 35 

"That e'er my Captain fought on foot, 

And I stood looking on. 
You be two earls," quoth Witherington, 

"And I a squire alone. 

"I'll do the best that do I may, 

While I have power to stand: 
While I have power to wield my sword, 

I'll fight with heart and hand." 100 

Our English archers bent their bows, 
Their hearts were good and true. 

At the first flight of arrows sent, 
Full fourscore Scots they slew. 

To drive the deer with hound and horn, 

Douglas bade on the bent. 
Two captains moved with mickle might; 

Their spears to shivers went. 

They closed full fast on every side; 

No slackness there was found: no 

But many a gallant gentleman 

Lay gasping on the ground. 

Christ! it was great grief to see, 

How each man chose his spear, 
And how the blood out of their breasts 

Did gush like water clear. 

At last, these two stout earls did meet, 

Like captains of great might; 
Like lions wood they laid on load, 

And made a cruel fight: 120 

32 



36 BALLADS AND POEMS 

They fought, until they both did sweat, 
With swords of tempered steel, 

Till blood adown their cheeks like rain 
They trickling down did feel. 

"0 yield thee, Percy," Douglas said, 
"And in faith I will thee bring, 

Where thou shalt high advanced be, 
By James, our Scottish King! 

"Thy ransom I will freely give, 

And this report of thee 130 

Thou art the most courageous knight 

That ever I did see!" 

"No, Douglas," quoth Earl Percy then, 

"Thy proffer I do scorn; 
I will not yield to any Scot 

That ever yet was born!" 

With that, there came an arrow keen 

Out of an English bow, 
Which struck Earl Douglas on the breast 

A deep and deadly blow; 140 

Who never said more words than these, 

"Fight on, my merry men all! 
Forwhy my life is at an end; 

Lord Percy sees my fall!" 

Then leaving life, Earl Percy took 

The dead man by the hand, 
Who said, "Earl Douglas, for thy sake, 

Would I had lost my land! 



CHEVY CHASE 37 

"0 Christ! my very heart doth bleed 

For sorrow, for thy sake, 150 

For, sure, a more redoubted knight 
Mischance could never take ! " 

A knight amongst the Scots there was, 

Which saw Earl Douglas die; 
Who straight in heart did vow revenge 

Upon the Lord Percy. 

Sir Hugh Montgomery was he called; 

Who, with a spear full bright, 
Well mounted on a gallant steed, 

Ran fiercely through the fight, 160 

And passed the English archers all, 

Without all dread or fear; 
And through Earl Percy's body then 

He thrust his hateful spear. 

With such a vehement force and might, 

His body he did gore, 
The staff ran through the other side, 

A large cloth-yard and more. 

Thus did both those nobles die, 

Whose courage none could stain; 170 

An English archer then perceived 

The noble earl was slain. 

He had a good bow in his hand, 

Made of a trusty tree. 
An arrow of a cloth-yard long 

To the hard head haled he. 



38 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Against Sir Hugh Montgomery, 

So right the shaft he set; 
The grey-goose wing that was thereon, 

In his heart's blood was wet. 180 

This fight from break of day did last 

Till setting of the sun: 
For when they rang the evening bell, 

The battle scarce was done. 

With stout Earl Percy there was slain 

Sir John of Egerton, 
Sir Eobert Radcliffe, and Sir John, 

Sir James, that bold Baron. 

And with Sir George and stout Sir James, 
Both knights of good account, 190 

Good Sir Ralph Baby there was slain, 
Whose prowess did surmount. 

For Witherington needs must I wail, 

As one in doleful dumps, 
For when his legs were smitten off, 

He fought upon his stumps. 

And with Earl Douglas there were slain 

Sir Hugh Montgomery; 
And Sir Charles Murray, that from field 

One foot would never flee. 200 

Sir Charles Murray of Ratcliffe, too, 

His sister's son was he: 
Sir David Lamb, so well esteemed, 

But saved he could not be. 



CHEVY CHASE 39 

And the Lord Maxwell, in like case, 

Did with Earl Douglas die. 
Of twenty hundred Scottish speara 

Scarce fifty-five did fly. 

Of fifteen hundred Englishmen, 

Went home but fifty-three; 210 

The rest in Chevy Chase were slain, 

Under the greenwood tree. 

Next day did many widows come 

Their husbands to bewail: 
They washed their wounds in brinish tears; 

But all would not prevail. 

Their bodies, bathed in purple blood, 

They bore with them away. 
They kissed them, dead, a thousand times, 

Ere they were clad in clay. 220 

The news was brought to Edinborough, 
Where Scotland's king did reign, 

That brave Earl Douglas suddenly 
Was with an arrow slain. 

"0, heavy news!" King James did say, 

"Scotland may witness be, 
I have not any captain more 

Of such account as he!" 

Like tidings to King Henry came, 

Within as short a space, 230 

That Percy of Northumberland, 

Was slain in Chevy Chase. 



40 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Now, God be with him!" said our King, 

"Sith it will no better be; 
I trust I have, within my realm, 

Five hundred as good as he. 

"Yet shall not Scots, nor Scotland, say 

But I will vengeance take; 
And be revenged on them all, 

For brave Earl Percy's sake." 240 

This vow the Bang did well perform 

After, on Humbledown, 
In one day fifty knights were slain, 

"With lords of great renown; 

And of the rest, of small account, 

Did many thousands die. 
Thus endeth the hunting in Chevy Chase, 

Made by the Earl Percy. 

God save our King; and bless this land 
With plenty, joy, and peace! 250 

And grant henceforth, that foul debate 
'Twixt noblemen may cease ! 

Traditional Ballad. 



THE BATTLE OF HARLAW 41 

THE BATTLE OF HAELAW. 
(1411) 

As I cam in by Dunidier, 

An' doun by Netherha', 
There was fifty thousand Hielan'men 

A-marching to Harlaw. 

Wi' a dree dree dradie drumtie dree. 

As I cam on, an' farther on, 

An' doun an' by Balquhain, 
Oh there I met Sir James the Rose, 

Wi' him Sir John the G-ryme. 

"O cam ye frae the Hielan's, man? 10 

An' cam ye a' the wey? 
Saw ye Macdonell an' his men, 

As they cam frae the Skee?" 

"Yes, me cam frae ta Hielan's, man, 

An' me cam a' ta wey, 
An' she saw Macdonell an' his men, 

As they cam frae ta Skee." 

"Oh was ye near Macdonell's men? 

Did ye their numbers see ? 
Come, tell to me, John Hielan'man, 20 

What micht their numbers be ? " 

"Yes, me was near, an' near eneuch, 

An' me their numbers saw; 
There was fifty thousan' Hielan'men 

A-marchin' to Harlaw." 



42 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Gin that be true," says James the Rose, 

"We'll no come meikle speed; 
We'll cry upo' our merry men, 

And lichtly mount our steed/' 

"Oh no, oh no," says John the Gryme, 30 

"That thing maun never be; 
The gallant Grymes were never bate, 

We'll try phat we can dee." 

As I cam on, an' farther on, 

An' doun an' by Harlaw, 
They fell fu' close on ilka side; 

Sic fun ye never saw. 

They fell fu' close on ilka side, 

Sic fun ye never saw; 
For Hielan' swords gi'ed clash for clash, 40 

At the battle o' Harlaw. 

The Hielan'men, wi' their lang swords, 

They laid on us fu' sair, 
An' they drave back our merry men 

Three acres breadth an' mair. 

Brave Forbes to his brither did say, 

" Noo, brither, dinna ye see ? 
They beat us back on ilka side, 

An' we'se be forced to flee." 

"Oh no, oh no, my brither dear, 50 

That thing maun never be; 
Tak' ye your good sword in your hand, 

An' come your wa's wi' me." 



THE BATTLE OF HARLAW 43 

"Oh no, oh no, my brither dear, 

The clans they are ower strang, 
An' they drive back our merry men, 

Wi' swords baith sharp an' lang." 

Brave Forbes drew his men aside, 

Said "Tak' your rest awhile, 
Until I to Drumminnor send, 60 

To fess my coat o' mail." 

The servant he did ride, 

An' his horse it did na fail, 
For in twa hours an' a quarter 

He brocht the coat o' mail. 

Then back to back the brithers twa 

Gaed in amo' the thrang, 
An' they hewed down the Hielan'men, 

Wi' swords baith sharp an' lang. 

Macdonell he was young an' stout, 70 

Had on his coat o' mail, 
An' he has gane oot throw them a', 

To try his han' himsell. 

The first ae straik that Forbes strack, 

He garrt Macdonell reel, 
An' the neist ae straik that Forbes strack, 

The great Macdonell fell. 

An' siccan a lierachie 

I'm sure ye never saw 
As wis amo' the Hielan'men, 80 

When they saw Macdonell fa'. 



44 BALLADS AND POEMS 

An' when they saw that he was deid, 

They turn'd an' ran awa', 
An' they buried him in Leggett's Den, 

A large mile frae Harlaw. 

They rade, they ran, an' some did gang, 

They were o' sma' record; 
But Forbes an' his merry men, 

They slew them a' the road. 

On Monanday, at mornin', 90 

The battle it began, 
On Saturday, at gloamin', 

Ye'd scarce kent wha had wan. 

An' sic a weary buryin' 

I'm sure ye never saw 
As wis the Sunday after that, 

On the muirs aneath Harlaw. 

Gin ony body speer at you 

For them ye took awa', 
Ye may tell their wives and bairnies 100 

They're sleepin' at Harlaw. 

Traditional Ballad. 



THE AGINCOUET SONG 45 

THE AGINCOURT SONG. 
(1415) 

Our king went forth to Normandy. 
With grace and might of chivalry; 
There God for him wrought marvellously. 
Wherefore England may call and cry 

Deo gratias, Anglia, 

Redde pro victoria ! 

He set a siege, the sooth for to say, 

To Harfleur town with royal array. 

That town he won, and made a fray 

That France shall rue till Doomes-day. 10 

Deo gratias, Anglia, 

Redde pro victoria I 

Then went our king, with all his host, 
Through France, for all the Frenche boast. 
He spared for dread of least nor most 
Till he came to Agincourt coast. 

Deo gratias, Anglia, 

Redde pro victoria! 

Then went him forth our king comely, 

In Agincourt Field he fought manly. 20 

Through grace of God most marvellously 

He had both field and victory. 

Deo gratias, Anglia, 

Redde pro victoria ! 



46 BALLADS AND POEMS 

There lordes, earles, and baroune, 
Were slain and taken and that full soon, 
And some were brought into London, 
With joy and bliss and great renown. 

Deo gratias, Anglia, 

Redde pro victoria I 30 

Almighty God, he keep our king, 
His people, and all his well-willing, 
And give them grace without ending I 
Then may we call and safely sing 

Deo gratias, Anglia, 

Redde pro victoria I 

Contemporary Poem. 



KING HENRY THE FIFTH'S CONQUEST 
OF FRANCE. 

(1415) 

As our king lay musing on his bed, 
He bethought himself upon a time 

Of a tribute that was due from France, 
Had not been paid for so long a time. 

He called for his lovely page, 

His lovely page then called he, 
Saying, "You must go to the king of France, 

To the king of France, sir, ride speedily." 



KING HENRY THE FIFTH'S CONQUEST OF FRANCE 47 

then went away this lovely page, 

This lovely page then away went he; 10 

And when he came to the king of France, 

Low he fell down on his bended knee. 

"My master greets you, worthy sir; 

Ten ton of gold that is due to he, 
That you will send him his tribute home, 

Or in French land you soon will him see." 

"Your master's young and of tender years, 

Not fit to come into my degree, 
And I will send him three tennis-balls, 

That with them he may learn to play." 20 

then returned this lovely page, 

This lovely page then returned he, 
And when he came to our gracious king, 

Low he fell down on his bended knee. 

" What news, what news, my trusty page ? 

What is the news you have brought to me ? " 
" I have brought such news from the king of France, 

That you and he will never agree. 

"He say you're young and of tender years, 

Not fit to come into his degree, 30 

And he will send you three tennis-balls, 
That with them you may learn to play." 

"Eecruit me Cheshire and Lancashire, 

And Derby Hills that are so .free ; 
No married man, nor no widow's son; 

For no widow's curse shall go with me." 



48 BALLADS AND POEMS 

They recruited Cheshire and Lancashire, 

And Derby Hills that are so free; 
No married man, nor no widow's son; 

Yet there was a bold jovial company. 40 

then we marched into the French land, 
With drums and trumpets so merrily; 

And then bespoke the king of France, 
"Lo, yonder comes proud King Henry." 

The first shot that the Frenchmen gave, 

They killed our Englishmen so free; 
We killed ten thousand of the French, 

And the rest of them they ran away. 

And then we marched to Paris' gates, 

With drums and trumpets so merrily; 50 

then bespoke the king of France, 

"The Lord have mercy on my men and me! 

"01 will send him his tribute home, 

Ten ton of gold that is due to he, 
And the finest flower that is in all France 

To the Rose of England I will give free/' 

Traditional Ballad. 



AGINCOURT 49 



AGINCOURT. 
(1415) 

Fair stood the wind for France, 
When we our sails advance, 
Nor now to prove our chance 

Longer will tarry; 
But putting to the main, 
At Caux, the mouth of Seine, 
With all his martial train, 

Landed King Harry. 

And taking many a fort, 
Furnished in warlike sort, 
Marched towards Agincourt 

In happy hour, 
Skirmishing day by day 
With those that stopped his way, 
Where the French gen'ral lay 

With all his power : 

Which, in his height of pride, 
King Henry to deride, 
His ransom to provide 

To the king sending; 
Which he neglects the while 
As from a nation vile, 
Yet with an angry smile 

Their fall portending. 



s. 



50 BALLADS AND POEMS 

And turning to his men, 
Quoth our brave Henry then, 
"Though they to one be ten, 

Be not amazed. 
Yet have we well begun, 
Battles so bravely won 30 

Have ever to the sun 

By fame been rais&d. 

"And for myself," quoth he, 
" This my full rest shall be : 
England ne'er mourn for me, 

Nor more esteem me; 
Victor I will remain 
Or on this earth lie slain; 
Never shall she sustain 

Loss to redeem me. 40 

"Poitiers and Cressy tell, 

When most their pride did swell, 

Under our swords they fell; 

No less our skill is 
Than when our grandsire great; 
Claiming the regal seat, 
By many a warlike feat 

Lopped the French lilies." 

The Duke of York so dread 

The eager vaward led; 50 

With the main Henry sped, 

Amongst his henchmen ; 
Excester had the rear, 
A braver man not there : 
Lord, how hot they were 

On the false Frenchmen ! 



AGINCOURT 51 

They now to fight are gone, 
Armour on armour shone, 
Drum now to drum did groan, 

To hear was wonder; 60 

That with the cries they make 
The very earth did shake, 
Trumpet to trumpet spake, 

Thunder to thunder. 

Well it thine age became, 
noble Erpingham, 
Which did the signal aim 

To our hid forces! 
When from a meadow by, 
Like a storm suddenly, 70 

The English archery 

Struck the French horses. 

With Spanish yew so strong, 
Arrows a cloth-yard long, 
That like to serpents stung, 

Piercing the weather; 
None from his fellow starts, 
But playing manly parts, 
And like true English hearts 

Stuck close together. 80 

When down their bows they threw, 
And forth their bilbos drew, 
And on the French they flew, 

Not one was tardy; 
Arms were from shoulders sent, 
Scalps to the teeth were rent, 
Down the French peasants went; 

Our men were hardy. 

42 



52 BALLADS AND POEMS 

This while our noble king, 

His broadsword brandishing, 90 

Down the French host did ding 

. As to o'erwhelm it, 
And many a deep wound lent, 
His arms with blood besprent, 
And many a cruel dent 
Bruised his helmet. 

Grlo'ster, that duke so good, 
Next of the royal blood, 
For famous England stood, 

With his brave brother; 100 

Clarence, in steel so bright, 
Though but a maiden knight, 
Yet in that furious fight 

Scarce such another ! 

Warwick in blood did wade, 
Oxford the foe invade, 
And cruel slaughter made, 

Still as they ran up; 
Suffolk his axe did ply, 

Beaumont and Willoughby no 

Bare them right doughtily, 

Ferrers and Fanhope. 

Upon Saint Crispin's Day 
Fought was this noble fray, 
Which fame did not delay, 

To England to carry. 
O, when shall Englishmen 
With such acts fill a pen, 
Or England breed again 

Such a King Harry ? 120 

MICHAEL DRAYTON. 



THE ROSE OF ENGLAND 58 



THE ROSE OF ENGLAND. 
(1480) 

Throughout a garden green and gay, 

A seemly sight it was to see 
How flowers did flourish fresh and gay, 

And birds do sing melodiously. 

In the midst of a garden there sprang a tree, 
Which tree was of a mickle price, 

And thereupon sprang the rose so red, 
The goodliest that ever sprang on rise. 

This rose was fair, fresh to behold, 
Springing with many a royal lance; 

A crowned king, with a crown of gold, 
Over England, Ireland, and of France. 

Then came in a beast men call a boar, 
And he rooted this garden up and down; 

By the seed of the rose he set no store, 
But afterwards it wore the crown. 

He took the branches of this rose away, 
And all in sunder did them tear, 

And he buried them under a clod of clay, 
Swore they should never bloom nor bear. 

Then came in an eagle gleaming gay, 
Of all fair birds well worth the best; 

He took the branch of the rose away, 
And bore it to Latham to his nest. 



54 BALLADS AND POEMS 

But now is this rose out of England exiled, 

This certain truth I will not lain; 
But if it please you to sit awhile, 

I'll tell you how the rose came in again. 

At Milford Haven he entered in; 

To claim his right was his delight; 30 

He brought the blue boar in with him, 

To encounter with the boar so white. 

Then a messenger the rose did send 
To the eagle's nest, and bid him hie : 

" To my father, the old eagle, I do me commend, 
His aid and help I crave speedily." 

Says, "I desire my father at my coming 

Of men and money at my need, 
And also my mother of her dear blessing; 

The better then I hope to speed." 4 

And when the messenger came before th' old eagle, 
He. kneeled him down upon his knee, 

Saith, "Well greeteth you my lord the rose, 
He hath sent you greetings here by me. 

" Safe from the seas Christ hath him sent, 

Now he is entered England within." 
" Let us thank God," the old eagle did say, 

"He shall be the flower of all his kin. 

"Wend away, messenger, with might and main; 

It's hard to know who a man may trust; 50 

I hope the rose shall flourish again, 

And have all things at his own lust." 



THE ROSE OF ENGLAND 55 

Then Sir Rice ap Thomas draws Wales with him; 

A worthy sight it was to see, 
How the Welshmen rose wholly with him, 

And shogged them to Shrewsbury. 

At that time was baily in Shrewsbury 

One Master Mitton, in the town; 
The gates were strong, he made them fast, 

And the portcullis he let down. 60 

And through a garrett of the walls, 

Over Severn these words said he; 
"At these gates no man enter shall;" 

But he kept him out a night and a day. 

These words Mitton did Earl Richmond tell 
(I am sure the chronicles will not lie) ; 

But when letters came from Sir William Stanley, 
Then the gates were opened presently. 

Then entered this town the noble lord, 

The Earl Richmond, the rose so red ; 70 

The Earl of Oxford with a sword 

Would have smit off the bailiff's head. 

"But hold your hand," says Earl Richmond, 
" For His love that died upon a tree ! 

For if we begin to head so soon, 

In England we shall bear no degree." 

"What offence have I made thee," said Earl Richmond, 
" That thou kept me out of my town ? " 

"I know no king," said Mitton then, 

"But Richard now that wears the crown." So 



56 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Why, what wilt thou say," said Earl Richmond, 
"When I have put King Richard down?" 

"Why, then I'll be as true to you, my lord, 
After the time that I am sworn." 

"Were it not great pity," said Earl Richmond, 
"That such a man as this should die, 

Such loyal service by him done?" 
(The chronicles of this will not lie.) 

"Thou shalt not be harmed in any case" 

He pardoned him presently. 90 

They stayed not past a night and a day, 
But towards Newport did they hie. 

But at Atherstone these lords did meet; 

A worthy sight it was to see 
How Earl Richmond took his hat in his hand, 

And said, "Cheshire and Lancashire, welcome 
to me!" 

But now is a bird of the eagle taken; 

From the white boar he cannot flee; 
Therefore the old eagle makes great moan, 

And prays to God most certainly. 100 

"0 steadfast God, verament," he did say, 
" Three Persons in one God in Trinity, 

Save my son, the young eagle, this day 
From all false craft and treachery 1" 

Then the blue boar the vaiiward had; 

He was both wary and wise of wit; 
The right hand of them he took, 

The sun and wind of them to get. 



THE ROSE OF ENGLAND 57 

Then the eagle followed fast upon his prey, 

With sore dints he did them smite; no 

The talbot he bit wondrous sore, 
So well the unicorn did him quite. 

And then came in the hart's head; 

A worthy sight it was to see, 
The jackets that were of white and red, 

How they laid about them lustily. 

But now is the fierce field foughten and ended, 

And the white boar there lieth slain, 
And the young eagle is preserved, 

And come to his nest again. 120 

But now this garden flourishes gay 

With fragrant flowers comely of hue, 
And gardeners it do maintain; 

I hope they will prove just and true. 

Our king, he is the rose so red, 

That now does flourish fresh and gay; 

Confound his foes, Lord, we beseech, 

And love his grace both night and day! 

Traditional Ballad. 



58 BALLADS AND POEMS 

SIR ANDREW BARTON. 
(1511) 

As it befell in midsummer-time, 
When birds sing sweetly on every tree, 

Our noble king, King Henry the Eighth, 
Over the river of Thames passed he. 

He was no sooner over the river, 

Down in a forest to take the air, 
But eighty merchants of London city 

Came kneeling before King Henry there. 

"0 ye are welcome, rich merchants, 

Good sailors, welcome unto me ! " 10 

They swore by the rood they were sailors good, 

But rich merchants they could not be. 

"To France nor Flanders dare we not pass, 
Nor Bourdeaux voyage we dare not fare, 

And all for a false robber that lies on the seas, 
And robs us of our merchants- ware." 

King Henry was stout, and he turned him about, 
And swore by the Lord that was mickle of might ; 

" I thought he had not been in the world throughout 
That durst have wrought England such unright." 20 

But ever they sighed, and said, alas ! 

Unto King Henry this answer again; 
" He is a proud Scot that will rob us all 

If we were twenty ships and he but one." 



SIR ANDREW BARTON 59 

The king looked over his left shoulder, 
Amongst his lords and barons so free; 

" Have I never a lord in all my realm 
Will fetch yond traitor unto me ? " 

" Yes, that dare 1 1 " said my lord Charles Howard, 
Near to the king whereas he did stand; 30 

"If that your Grace will give me leave, 
Myself will be the only man." 

"Thou shalt have six hundred men," saith our king, 
"And choose them out of my realm so free, 

Besides mariners and boys, 

To guide the great ship on the sea." 

"I'll go speak with Sir Andrew," says Charles, my 
lord Howard, 

"Upon the sea, if he be there; 
I will bring him and his ship to shore, 

Or before my prince I will never come near." 40 

The first of all my lord did call, 

A noble gunner he was one; 
This man was three score years and ten, 

And Peter Simon was his name. 

"Peter," says he, "I must sail to the sea, 
To seek out an enemy; God be my speed 1 

Before all others I have chosen thee; 

Of a hundred gunners thou'st be my head." 

" My lord," says he, " if you have chosen me 

Of a hundred gunners to be the head, 50 

Hang me at your mainmast tree 

If I miss iny mark past three pence bread." 



60 BALLADS AND POEMS 

The next of all my lord he did call, 

A noble bowman he was one; 
In Yorkshire was this gentleman born, 

And William Horsley was his name. 

"Horsley," says he, "I must sail to the sea, 
To seek out an enemy ; God be my speed ! 

Before all others I have chosen thee; 

Of a hundred bowmen thou'st be my head." 60 

"My lord," says he, "if you have chosen me 
Of a hundred bowmen to be the head, 

Hang me at your mainmast tree 

If I miss my mark past twelve pence bread." 

With pikes, and guns, and bowmen bold, 
This noble Howard is gone to the sea 

On the day before midsummer-even, 
And out at Thames' mouth sailed they. 

They had not sailed days three 

Upon their journey they took in hand, 70 

But there they met with a noble ship, 

And stoutly made it both stay and stand. 

"Thou must tell me thy name," says Charles, my 
lord Howard, 

"Or who thou art, or from whence thou came, 
Yea, and where thy dwelling is, 

To whom and where thy ship does belong.' 1 

" My name," says he, " is Henry Hunt, 
With a pure heart and a penitent mindj 

I and my ship they do belong 

Unto the New-castle that stands upon Ty ne -" 8o 



SIR ANDREW BARTON 61 

"Now thou must tell me, Harry Hunt, 
As thou hast sailed by day and by night, 

Hast thou not heard of a stout robber ? 
Men call him Sir Andrew Barton, knight." 

But ever he sighed, and said, " Alas ! 

Full well, my lord, I know that wight; 
He robbed me of my merchants-ware, 

And I was his prisoner but yesternight. 

"As I was sailing upon the sea, 

And Bourdeaux voyage as I did fare, 90 

He clasped me to his arch-board, 

And robbed me of all my merchants-ware. 

"And I am a man both poor and bare, 
And every man will have his own of me, 

And I am bound towards London to fare, 
To complain to my prince Henry." 

"That shall not need," says my lord Howard; 

"If thou canst let me this robber see, 
For every penny he hath taken thee fro, 

Thou shalt be rewarded a shilling," quoth he. 100 

"Now God forfend," says Henry Hunt, 
" My lord, you should work so far amiss : 

God keep you out of that traitor's hands ! 
For you not full little what a man he is. 

" He is brass within, and steel without, 

And beams he bears in his top-castle strong; 

His ship hath ordnance clean round about; 
Besides, my lord, he is very well manned. 



62 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"He hath a pinnace is dearly dight, 

Saint Andrew's cross, that is his guide; no 

His pinnace bears nine score men and more, 

Besides fifteen cannons on every side. 

"If you were twenty ships, and he but one, 

Either in arch-board or in hall, 
He would overcome you every one, 

And if his beams they do down fall." 

"This is cold comfort," says my lord Howard, 
"To welcome a stranger thus to the sea; 

I'll bring him and his ship to shore, 

Or else into Scotland he shall carry me." 120 

"Then you must get a noble gunner, my lord, 

That can set well with his eye, 
And sink his pinnace into the sea, 

And soon then overcome will he be. 

" And when that you have done this, 
If you chance Sir Andrew for to board, 

Let no man to his top-castle go ; 

And I will give you a glass, my lord, 

"And then you need to fear no Scot, 

Whether you sail by day or by night; 130 

And tomorrow, by seven of the clock, 

You shall meet with Sir Andrew Barton, knight. 

"I was his prisoner but yesternight, 

And he hath taken me sworn," quoth he; 

" 1 trust my Lord God will me forgive 
And if that oath then broken be. 






SIR ANDREW BARTON 63 

"You must lend me six pieces, my lord," quoth he, 

" Into my ship, to sail the sea, 
And tomorrow, by nine of the clock, 

Your Honour again then will I see." 140 



And the hatch-board where Sir Andrew lay 

Is hatched with gold dearly dight. 
"Now by my faith," says Charles, my lord Howard, 

"Then yonder Scot is a worthy wight! 

" Take in your ancients and your standards, 

Yea, that no man shall them see, 
And put me forth a white willow wand, 

As merchants use to sail the sea." 

Bat they stirred neither top nor mast, 

But Sir Andrew they passed by. 150 

" What English are yonder," said Sir Andrew, 

" That can so little courtesy ? 

"I have been admiral over the sea 

More than these years three; 
There is never an English dog, nor Portingale, 

Can pass this way without leave of me. 

"But now yonder pedlers they are past, 

Which is no little grief to me; 
Fetch them back," says Sir Andrew Barton, 

"They shall all hang at my mainmast tree." 160 

With that the pinnace it shot off, 

That my lord Howard might it well ken; 

It struck down my lord's foremast, * 
And killed fourteen of my lord his men. 



64 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Come hither, Simon," says my lord Howard, 
"Look that thy words be true thou said; 

I'll hang thee at my mainmast tree 
If thou miss thy mark past twelve pence bread." 

Simon was old, but his heart it was bold; 

He took down a piece, and laid it full low; 170 
He put in chain yards nine, 

Besides other great shot less and moe. 

With that he let his gunshot go ; 

So well he settled it with his eye, 
The first sight that Sir Andrew saw, 

He saw his pinnace sunk in the sea. 

When he saw his pinnace sunk, 

Lord! in his heart he was not well. 
" Cut my ropes, it is time to be gone ; 

I'll go fetch yond pedlers back myself!" 180 

When my lord Howard saw Sir Andrew loose, 

Lord ! in his heart that he was fain. 
" Strike on your drums, spread out your ancients ; 

Sound out your trumpets, sound out amain!" 

"Fight on, my men," says Sir Andrew Barton, 
"Weet, howsoever this gear will sway, 

It is my lord Admiral of England 
Is come to seek me on the sea." 

Simon had a son; with shot of a gun, 

Well Sir Andrew might it ken, 190 

He shot it at a privy place, 

And killed sixty more of Sir Andrew's men. 



SIR ANDREW BARTON 65 

Harry Hunt came in at the other side, 

And at Sir Andrew he shot then; 
He drove down his foremast tree, 

And killed eighty more of Sir Andrew's men. 

"I have done a good turn," says Harry Hunt, 
"Sir Andrew is not our king's friend; 

He hoped to have undone me yesternight, 
But I hope I have quit him well in the end." 200 

" Ever alas ! " said Sir Andrew Barton, 

" What should a man either think or say ? 

Yonder false thief is my strongest enemy, 
Who was my prisoner but yesterday. 

" Come hither to me, thou Gordon good, 

And be thou ready at my call, 
And I will give thee three hundred pound, 

If thou wilt let my beams down fall." 

With that he swarved the mainmast tree, 

So did he it with might and main; 210 

Horsley, with a bearing arrow, 

Strake the Gordon through the brain. 

And he fell into the hatches again, 

And sore of this wound that he did bleed; 

Then word went through Sir Andrew's men 
That the Gordon he was dead. 

"Come hither to me, James Hamilton, 

Thou art my sister's son, I have no more; 

I will give thee six hundred pound 

If thou will let my beams down fall." 220 

s. 5 



66 BALLADS AND POEMS 

With that he swarved the mainmast tree, 

So did he it with might and main; 
Horsley, with another broad arrow, 

Strake the yeoman through the brain. 

That he fell down to the hatches again; 

Sore of his wound that he did bleed. 
Covetousness gets no gain, 

It is very true as the Welshman said. 

But when he saw his sister's son slain, 

Lord! in his heart he was not well. 230 

"Go fetch me down my armour of proof, 

For I will to the top-castle myself. 

"Go fetch me down my armour of proof, 

For it is gilded with gold so clear; 
God be with my brother, John of Barton ! 

Amongst the Portingales he did it wear." 

But when he had his armour of proof, 

And on his body he had it on, 
Every man that looked at him 

Said, gun nor arrow he need fear none. 240 

"Come hither, Horsley," says my lord Howard, 
"And look your shaft that it go right; 

Shoot a good shoot in the time of need, 
And for thy shooting thou'st be made a knight." 

"I'll do my best," says Horsley then, 

"Your honour shall see before I go; 
If I should be hanged at your mainmast, 

I have in my ship but arrows two." 



SIR ANDREW BARTON 67 

But at Sir Andrew he shot then; 

He made sure to hit his mark; 250 

Under the spole of his right arm 

He smote Sir Andrew quite through the heart. 

Yet from the tree he would not start, 

But he dinged to it with might and main; 

Under the collar then of his jack 

He strake Sir Andrew through the brain. 

"Fight on, my men," says Sir Andrew Barton, 

"I am hurt, but I am not slain; 
I'll lay me down and bleed awhile, 

And then I'll rise and fight again. 260 

"Fight on, my men," says Sir Andrew Barton, 
"These English dogs they bite so low; 

Fight on for Scotland and Saint Andrew 
Till you hear my whistle blow 1 " 

But when they could not hear his whistle blow, 

Says Harry Hunt, "I'll lay my head 
You may board yonder noble ship, my lord, 

For I know Sir Andrew he is dead." 

With that they boarded this noble ship, 

So did they it with might and main; 270 

They found eighteen score Scots alive, 
Besides the rest were maimed and slain. 

My Lord Howard took a sword in his hand, 

And smote off Sir Andrew's head ; 
The Scots stood by did weep and mourn, 

But never a word durst speak or say. 

52 



68 BALLADS AND POEMS 

He caused his body to be taken down, 

And over the hatch-board cast into the sea, 

And about his middle three hundred crowns: 

"Wheresoever thou lands, it will bury thee." 280 

With his head they sailed into England again, 
With right good will and force and main, 

And the day before New Year's Even 
Into Thames' mouth they came again. 

My Lord Howard wrote to King Henry's grace, 
With all the news he could him bring : 

" Such a New Year's gift I have brought your Grace 
As never did subject to any king. 

"For merchandise and manhood, 

The like is not to be found; 290 

The sight of these would do you good, 

For you have not the like in your English ground." 

But when he heard tell that they were come, 
Full royally he welcomed them home; 

Sir Andrew's ship was the King's New Year's gift ; 
A braver ship you never saw none. 

Now hath our King Sir Andrew's ship, 
Beset with pearls and precious stones; 

Now hath England two ships of war 

Two ships of war, before but one. 300 

" Who holp to this ? " says King Henry, 
"That I may reward him for his pain." 

" Harry Hunt, and Peter Simon, 
William Horsley, and i the same." 



SIR ANDREW BARTON 69 

"Harry Hunt shall have his whistle and chain, 
And all his jewels, whatsoever they be, 

And other rich gifts that I will not name, 
For his good service he hath done me. 

"Horsley, right thou'st be a knight, 

Lands and livings thou shalt have store; 310 

Howard shall be Earl of Nottingham, 

And so was never Howard before. 

" Now, Peter Simon, thou art old ; 

I will maintain thee and thy son; 
Thou shalt have five hundred pound all in gold 

For the good service that thou hast done." 

Then King Henry shifted his room; 

In came the Queen and ladies bright; 
Other errands they had none 

But to see Sir Andrew Barton, knight. 320 

But when they see his deadly face, 

His eyes were hollow in his head; 
" I would give a hundred pound," says King Henry, 

" The man were alive as he is dead 1 

"Yet for the manful part that he hath played, 

Both here and beyond the sea, 
His men shall have half a crown a day 

To bring them to my brother, King Jamie." 

Traditional Ballad. 



70 BALLADS AND POEMS 

FLODDEN FIELD. 
(1513) 

King Jamie hath made a vow, 

Keep it well if he may! 
That he will be at lovely London 

Upon Saint James his day. 

"Upon Saint James his day at noon, 

At fair London will I be, 
And all the lords in merry Scotland, 

They shall dine there with me." 

Then bespake good Queen Margaret, 
The tears fell from her eye: 10 

"Leave off these wars, most noble King, 
Keep your fidelity. 

"The water runs swift and wondrous deep, 

From bottom unto the brim; 
My brother Henry hath men good enough; 

England is hard to win." 

"Away," quoth he, "with this silly fool! 

In prison fast let her lie: 
For she is come of the English blood, 

And for those words she shall die." 20 

With that bespake Lord Thomas Howard, 
The queen's chamberlain that day: 

"If that you put Queen Margaret to death, 
Scotland shall rue it alway." 



FLODDEN FIELD 71 

Then in a rage King James did say, 

"Away with this foolish mome! 
He shall be hanged, and the other be burned, 

So soon as I come home." 

At Flodden Field the Scots came in, 

Which made our English men fain; 3 

At Bramstone Green this battle was seen, 
There was King Jamie slain. 

Then presently the Scots did fly, 

Their cannons they left behind; 
Their ensigns gay were won all away, 

Our soldiers did beat them blind. 

To tell you plain, twelve thousand were slain 

That to the fight did stand, 
And many prisoners took that day, 

The best in all Scotland. 40 

That day made many a fatherless child, 

And many a widow poor, 
And many a Scottish gay lady 

Sat weeping in her bower. 

Jack with a feather was lapt all in leather, 

His boastings were all in vain; 
He had such a chance, with a new morrice dance, 

He never went home again. 

Traditional Ballad. 



72 BALLADS AND POEMS 

EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN. 
(1513) 

I. 

News of battle ! news of battle ! 

Hark! 'tis ringing down the street: 
And the archways and the pavement 

Bear the clang of hurrying feet. 
News of battle ! who hath brought it ? 

News of triumph? Who should bring 
Tidings from our noble army, 

Greetings from our gallant King? 
AH last night we watched the beacons 

Blazing on the hills afar, 10 

Each one bearing, as it kindled, 

Message of the opened war. 
All night long the northern streamers 

Shot across the trembling sky: 
Fearful lights that never beacon 

Save when kings or heroes die. 

II. 

News of battle! Who hath brought it? 

All are thronging to the gate; 
"Warder warder! open quickly! 

Man is this a time to wait?" 20 

And the heavy gates are opened: 

Then a murmur long and loud, 
And a cry of fear and wonder 

Bursts from out the bending crowd. 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 73 

For they see in battered harness 

Only one hard-stricken man; 
And his weary steed is wounded, 

And his cheek is pale and wan: 
Spearless hangs a bloody banner 

In his weak and drooping hand 30 

God! can that be Randolph Murray, 

Captain of the city band? 



III. 

Round him crush the people, crying, 

"Tell us all oh, tell us true! 
Where are they who went to battle, 

Randolph Murray, sworn to you? 
Where are they, our brothers children? 

Have they met the English foe? 
Why art thou alone, unfollowed? 

Is it weal or is it woe?" 40 

Like a corpse the grisly warrior 

Looks from out his helm of steel; 
But no word he speaks in answer 

Only with his armed heel 
Chides his weary steed, and onward 

Up the city streets they ride; 
Fathers, sisters, mothers, children, 

Shrieking, praying by his side. 
"By the God that made thee, Randolph! 

Tell us what mischance hath come." 50 

Then he lifts his riven banner, 

And the asker's voice is dumb. 



74 BALLADS AND POEMS 



IV. 

The elders of the city 

Have met within their hall 
The men whom good King James had charged 

To watch the tower and wall. 
"Your hands are weak with age," he said, 

"Your hearts are stout and true; 
So bide ye in the Maiden Town, 

While others fight for you. 60 

My trumpet from the Border-side 

Shall send a blast so clear, 
That all who wait within the gate 

That stirring sound may hear. 
Or, if it be the will of Heaven 

That back I never come, 
And if, instead of Scottish shouts, 

Ye hear the English drum, 
Then let the warning bells ring out, 

Then gird you to the fray, 7 

Then man the walls like burghers stout, 

And fight while fight you may. 
'Twere better that in fiery flame 

The roofs should thunder down, 
Than that the foot of foreign foe 

Should trample in the town!" 



Y. 

Then in came Randolph Murray, 

His step was slow and weak. 
And, as he doffed his dinted helm, 

The tears ran down his cheek: 80 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 75 

They fell upon his corslet 

And on his mailed hand, 
As he gazed around him wistfully, 

Leaning sorely on his brand. 
And none who then beheld him 

But straight were smote with fear, 
For a bolder and a sterner man 

Had never couched a spear. 
They knew so sad a messenger 

Some ghastly news must bring; 90 

And all of them were fathers, 

And their sons were with the King. 



VL 

And up then rose the Provost 

A brave old man was he, 
Of ancient name, and knightly fame, 

And chivalrous degree. 
He ruled our city like a Lord 

Who brooked no equal here, 
And ever for the townsman's rights 

Stood up 'gainst prince and peer. 
And he had seen the Scottish host 

March from the Borough-muir, 
With music-storm and clamorous shout, 
And all the din that thunders out 

When youth 's of victory sure. 
But yet a dearer thought had he, 

For, with a father's pride, 
He saw his last remaining son 

Go forth by Randolph's side, 



76 BALLADS AND POEMS 

With casque on head and spur on heel, no 

All keen to do and dare; 
And proudly did that gallant boy 

Dunedin's banner bear. 
Oh! woeful now was the old man's look, 

And he spake right heavily 
"Now, Randolph, tell thy tidings, 

However sharp they be! 
Woe is written on thy visage, 

Death is looking from thy face: 
Speak ! though it be of overthrow 120 

It cannot be disgrace I " 



vn. 

Bight bitter was the agony 

That wrung that soldier proud: 
Thrice did he strive to answer, 
And thrice he groaned aloud. 
Then he gave the riven banner 

To the old man's shaking hand, 
Saying "That is all I bring ye 

From the bravest of the land! 
Ay! ye may look upon it 130 

It was guarded well and long, 
By your brothers and your children, 

By the valiant and the strong. 
One fey one they fell around it, 

As the archers laid them low, 
Grimly dying, still unconquered, 

With their faces to the foe. 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 77 

Ay! ye may well look upon it 

There is more than honour there, 
Else, be sure, I had not brought it 140 

From the field of dark despair. 
Never yet was royal banner 

Steeped in such a costly dye; 
It hath lain upon a bosom 

Where no other shroud shall lie. 
Sirs ! I charge you, keep it holy ; 

Keep it as a sacred thing, 
For the stain ye see upon it 

Was the life-blood of your King!" 



VIII. 

Woe, and woe, and lamentation! 150 

What a piteous cry was there! 
Widows, maidens, mothers, children, 

Shrieking, sobbing in despair! 
Through the streets the death-word rushes, 

Spreading terror, sweeping on 
"Jesu Christ! our King has fallen 

Great God, King James is gone! 
Holy Mother Mary, shield us, 

Thou who erst didst lose thy Son! 
the blackest day for Scotland 160 

That she ever knew before ! 
our King the good, the noble, 

Shall we see him never more ? 
Woe to us, and woe to Scotland! 

our sons, our sons and men! 
Surely some have 'scaped the Southron, 

Surely some will come again!" 



78 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Till the oak that fell last winter 
Shall uprear its shattered stem 

Wives and mothers of Dunedin 170 

Ye may look in vain for them! 

IX. 

But within the Council Chamber 

All was silent as the grave, 
Whilst the tempest of their sorrow 

Shook the bosoms of the brave. 
Well indeed might they be shaken 

With the weight of such a blow: 
He was gone their prince, their idol, 

Whom they loved and worshipped so! 
Like a knell of death and judgement 180 

Rung from heaven by angel hand, 
Fell the words of desolation 

On the elders of the land. 
Hoary heads were bowed and trembling, 

Withered hands were clasped and wrung; 
^God had left the old and feeble, 

He had ta'en away the young. 

X. 

Then the Provost he uprose, 

And his lip was ashen white; 
But a flush was on his brow, 190 

And his eye was full of light. 
"Thou hast spoken, Randolph Murray, 

Like a soldier stout and true; 
Thou hast done a deed of daring 

Had been perilled but by few. 






EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 79 

For thou hast not shamed to face us, 

Nor to speak thy ghastly tale, 
Standing thou a knight and captain 

Here, alive within thy mail! 
Now, as my God shall judge me, 200 

I hold it braver done, 
Than hadst thou tarried in thy place, 

And died above my son! 
Thou needst not tell it: he is dead. 

Grod help us all this day! 
But speak how fought the citizens 

Within the furious fray? 
For by the might of Mary, 

'Twere something still to tell 
That no Scottish foot went backward 210 

When the Royal Lion felll" 



XI. 

"No one failed him. He is keeping 

Royal state and semblance still; 
Knight and noble lie around him, 

Cold on Flodden's fatal hill. 
Of the brave and gallant-hearted, 

Whom you sent with prayers away, 
Not a single man departed 

From his Monarch yesterday. 
Had you seen them, my masters! 

When the night began to fall, 
And the English spearmen gathered 

Round a grim and ghastly wall! 



80 BALLADS AND POEMS 

As the wolves in winter circle 

Round the leaguer on the heath, 
So the greedy foe glared upward, 

Panting still for blood and death. 
But a rampart rose before them, 

Which the boldest dared not scale; 
Every stone a Scottish body, 230 

Every step a corpse in mail! 
And behind it lay our Monarch, 

Clenching still his shivered sword; 
By his side Montrose and Athole, 

At his feet a Southron lord. 
All so thick they lay together, 

When the stars lit up the sky, 
That I knew not who were stricken, 

Or who yet remained to die. 
Few there were when Surrey halted, 240 

And his wearied host withdrew; 
None but dying men around me, 

When the English trumpet blew. 
^Then I stooped, and took the banner, 

As you see it, from his breast, 
And I closed our hero's eyelids, 

And I left him to his rest. 
In the mountains growled the thunder, 

As I leaped the woeful wall, 
And the heavy clouds were settling 250 

Over Flodden, like a pall." 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 81 



XII. 

So he ended. And the others 

Cared not any answer then; 
Sitting silent, dumb with sorrow, 

Sitting anguish-struck, like men 
Who have seen the roaring torrent 

Sweep their happy homes away, 
And yet linger by the margin, 

Staring wildly on the spray. 
But, without, the maddening tumult 260 

Waxes ever more and more, 
And the crowd of wailing women 

Gather round the Council door. 
Every dusky spire is ringing 

With a dull and hollow knell, 
And the Miserere's singing 

To the tolling of the bell. 
Through the streets the burghers hurry, 

Spreading terror as they go; 
And the rampart's thronged with watchers 270 

For the coming of the foe. 
From each mountain-top a pillar 

Streams into the torpid air, 
Bearing token from the Border 

That the English host is there. 
All without is flight and terror, 

All within is woe and fear 
God protect thee, Maiden City, 

For thy latest hour is near! 



82 BALLADS AND POEMS 

xm. 

No! not yet, thou high Dunedin! 2^0 

Shalt thou totter to thy fall; 
Though thy bravest and thy strongest 

Are not there to man the wall. 
No, not yet! the ancient spirit 

Of our fathers hath not gone; 
Take it to thee as a buckler 

Better far than steel or stone. 
Oh, remember those who perished 

For thy birthright at the time 
When to be a Scot was treason, 290 

And to side with Wallace crime ! 
Have they not a voice among us, 

Whilst their hallowed dust is here ? 
Hear ye not a summons sounding 

From each buried warrior's bier? 
Up! they say and keep the freedom 

Which we won you long ago: 
Up ! and keep our graves unsullied 

From the insults of the foe! 
Up! and if ye cannot save them, 300 

Come to us in blood and fire: 
Midst the crash of falling turrets 

Let the last of Scots expire 1 

XIV. 

Still the bells are tolling fiercely, 

And the cry comes louder in; 
Mothers wailing for their children, 

Sisters for their slaughtered kin. 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 83 

All is terror and disorder; 

Till the Provost rises up, 
Calm, as though he had not tasted 310 

Of the fell and bitter cup. 
All so stately from his sorrow, 

Rose the old undaunted chief, 
That you had not deemed, to see him, 

His was more than common grief. 
" Rouse ye, Sirs ! " he said ; " we may not 

Longer mourn for what is done; 
If our King be taken from us, 

We are left to guard his son. 
We have sworn to keep the city 320 

From the foe, whate'er they be, 
And the oath that we have taken 

Never shall be broke by me. 
Death is nearer to us, brethren, 

Than it seemed to those who died, 
Fighting yesterday at Flodden, 

By their lord and master's side. 
Let us meet it then in patience, 

Not in terror or in fear; 
Though our hearts are bleeding yonder, 330 

Let our souls be steadfast here. 
Up, and rouse ye! Time is fleeting, 

And we yet have much to do; 
Up! and haste ye through the city, 

Stir the burghers stout and true ! 
Gather all our scattered people, 

Fling the banner out once more, 
Randolph Murray! do thou bear it, 

As it erst was borne before: 
Never Scottish heart will leave it, 340 

When they see their Monarch's gore! 

62 



84 BALLADS AND POEMS 

XV. 

"Let them cease that dismal knelling! 

It is time enough to ring, 
When the fortress-strength of Scotland 

Stoops to ruin like its King. 
Let the bells be kept for warning, 

Not for terror or alarm; 
When they next are heard to thunder, 

Let each man and stripling arm. 
Bid the women leave their wailing 350 

Do they think that woeful strain, 
From the bloody heaps of Flodden, 

Can redeem their dearest slain? 
Bid them cease, or rather hasten 

To the churches every one; 
There to pray to Mary Mother, 

And to her anointed Son, 
That the thunderbolt above us 

May not fall in ruin yet; 
That in fire and blood and rapine 360 

Scotland's glory may not set. 
Let them pray, for never women 

Stood in need of such a prayer! 
England's yeomen shall not find them 

Clinging to the altars there. 
No ! if we are doomed to perish, 

Man and maiden, let us fall, 
And a common gulf of ruin 

Open wide to whelm us all! 
Never shall the ruthless spoiler 370 

Lay his hot insulting hand 
On the sisters of our heroes, 

Whilst we bear a torch or brand! 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN 85 

Up! and rouse ye, then, my brothers, 

But when next ye hear the bell 
Sounding forth the sullen summons 

That may be our funeral knell, 
Once more let us meet together, 

Once more see each other's face; 
Then, like men that need not tremble, 380 

Go to our appointed place. 
God, our Father, will not fail us, 

In that last tremendous hour, 
If all other bulwarks crumble, 

HE will be our strength and tower: 
Though the ramparts rock beneath us, 

And the walls go crashing down, 
Though the roar of conflagration 

Bellow o'er the sinking town; 
There is yet one place of shelter, 390 

Where the foemen cannot come, 
Where the summons never sounded 

Of the trumpet or the drum. 
There again we'll meet our children, 

Who, on Flodden's trampled sod, 
For their King and for their country 

Rendered up their souls to God. 
There shall we find rest and refuge 

With our dear departed brave; 
And the ashes of the city 400 

Be our universal grave!" 

W. E. AYTOUN. 



86 BALLADS AND POEMS 

DICK 0' THE COW. 
(c. 1530) 

Now Liddesdale has long lain in, 

There is no riding there at a'; 
Their horse is growing so lidder and fat 

That are lazy in the sta'. 

Then Johnnie Armstrong to Willie can say, 

"Billie, a riding then will we; 
England and us has been long at a feed; 

Perhaps we may hit of some bootie." 

Then they're corned on to Hutton Hall, 

They rade that proper place about; 10 

But the laird he was the wiser man, 
For he had left nae gear without. 

Then he had left nae gear to steal, 

Except six sheep upon a lea; 
Says Johnnie, "I'd rather in England die, 

Before their six sheep gaed to Liddesdale with me. 

"But how call'd they the man we last with met, 

Billie, as we came over the know ? " 
"That same he is an innocent fool, 

And some men calls him Dick o' the Cow." 20 

"That fool has three as good kine of his own 
As is in a' Cumberland, billie," quoth he; 

"Betide my life, betide my death, 
These three kine shall go to Liddesdale with me." 



DICK O' THE COW 87 

Then they're coined on to the poor fool's house, 
And they have broken his walls so wide; 

They have loosed out Dick o' the CoVs kine three, 
And ta'en three co'erlets off his wife's bed. 

Then on the morn, when the day grew light, 

The shouts and cries rose loud and high; 30 

"Hold thy tongue, my wife," he says, 
"And of thy crying let me be. 

"Hold thy tongue, my wife," he says, 

"And of thy crying let me be, 
And ay that where thou wants a cow, 

Good sooth that I shall bring thee three." 

Then Dick's corned on to lord and master, 

And I wat a dreary fool was he; 
" Hold thy tongue, my fool," he says, 

"For I may not stand to jest with thee." 40 

" Shame speed a' your jesting, my lord," quo' Dickie, 
"For nae such jesting Agrees with me; 

Liddesdale has been in my house this last night, 
And they have ta'en my three kine from me.'/ 

"But I may nae langer in Cumberland dwell, 

To be your poor fool and your leal, 
Unless ye give me leave, my lord, 

To go to Liddesdale and steal." 

"To give thee leave, my fool," he says, 

"Thou speaks against mine honour and me; 50 
Unless thou give me thy troth and thy right hand, 

Thou'll steal frae nane but them that sta' from thee." 



88 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"There is my troth and my right hand; 

My head shall hing on Hairibee, 
I'll never cross Carlisle sands again, 

If I steal frae a man but them that sta' frae me." 

Dickie has ta'en leave at lord and master, 

And I wot a merry fool was he; 
He has bought a bridle and a pair of new spurs, 

And has packed them up in his breek-thigh. 60 

Then Dickie's come on for Puddinburn, 

Even as fast as he may dree; 
Dickie 's come on for Puddinburn, 

Where . there was thirty Armstrongs and three. 

" What 's this corned on me ! " quo' Dickie, 

" What mickle wae 's this happen'd on me," quo' he, 

"Where here is but an innocent fool, 

And there is thirty Armstrongs and three!" 

Yet he 's corned up to the hall among them all; 

So well he became his courtesie; 70 

" Well may ye be, my good Laird's Jock, 

But the deil bless all your companie ! 

" I'm come to plain of your man Fair Johnnie Arm 
strong, 

And syne his billie Willie," quo' he; 
"How they have been in my house this last night, 

And they have ta'en my three ky frae me." 

Quo' Johnnie Armstrong, "We'll him hang;" 
"Nay," then quo' Willie, "we'll him slae;" 

But up bespake another young man, 

"We'll knit him in a four-nooked sheet, 80 

Give him his burden of batts, aud let him gae." 



DICK O' THE COW 89 

Then up bespake the good Laird's Jock, 

The best fella in the companies 
" Sit thy way down a little while, Dickie, 

And a piece of thine own cow's hough I'll give 
to thee." 

But Dickie's heart it grew so great 

That never a bit of it he dought to eat; 

But Dickie was ware of an auld peat-house, 

Where there all the night he thought for to sleep. 

Then Dickie was ware of that auld peat-house, 90 
Where there all the night he thought for to lie; 

And a' the prayers the poor fool pray'd was, 
"I wish I had a mense for my own three ky!" 

Then it was the use of Puddinburn, 
And the house of Mangertoun, all hail! 

These that came not at the first call 

They got no more meat till the next meal. 

The lads, that hungry and aevery was, 
Above the door-head they flang the key. 

Dickie took good notice to that; 100 

Says, " There's a booty yonder for me." 

Then Dickie 's gone into the stable, 

Where there stood thirty horse and three; 

He has tied them a' with St. Mary knot, 
All these horse but barely three. 

He has tied them a' with St. Mary knot, 

All these horse but barely three; 
He has loupen on one, taken another in his hand, 

And out at the door and gone is Dickie. 



90 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Then on the morn, when the day grew light, no 
The shouts and cries rose loud and high; 

"What's that thief?" quo' the good Laird's Jock, 
"Tell me the truth and the verity. 

"What's that thief?" quo' the good Laird's Jock, 

"See unto me ye do not lie." 
" Dick o' the Cow has been in the stable this last nicht, 

And has my brother's horse and mine frae me." 

" Ye wad never be tell'd it," quo' the Laird's Jock, 
"Have ye not found my tales fu' leal? 

Ye wad never out of England bide, 120 

Till crooked and blind and a' wad steal." 

" But will thou lend me thy bay ? " Fair Johnnie 
Armstrong can say, 

" There 's nae mae horse loose in the stable but he ; 
And I'll either bring ye Dick o' the Cow again, 

Or the day is come that he must die." 

"To lend thee my bay," the Laird's Jock can say, 
"He's both worth gold and good monie; 

Dick o' the Cow has away twa horse, 
I wish no thou should make him three." 

He has ta'en the Laird's jack on his back, 130 

The twa-handed sword that hang leugh by his thigh; 

He has ta'en the steel cap on his head, 
And on is he to follow Dickie. 

Then Dickie was not a mile off the town, 

I wot a mile but barely three, 
Till John Armstrong has o'erta'en Dick o' the Cow, 

Hand for hand on Cannobie lee. 



DICK O' THE COW 91 

"Abide thee, bide now, Dickie, than, 
The day is come that thou must die." 

Dickie looked o'er his left shoulder, 140 

" Johnnie, has thou any mo in thy companie ? 

"There is a preacher in our chapel, 

And a' the lee-lang day teaches he; 
When day is gone, and night is come, 

There's never a word I mark but three. 

"The first and second's Faith and Conscience, 
The third is, Johnnie, Take heed of thee! 

But what faith and conscience had thou, traitor, 
When thou took my three ky frae me? 

"And when thou had ta'en my three ky, 150 

Thou thought in thy heart thou was no well sped ; 

But thou sent thy billie Willie o'er the know, 
And he took three co'erlets off my wife's bed." 

Then Johnnie let a spear fa' leugh by his thigh, 
Thought well to run the innocent through, 

But the powers above was more than his, 
He ran but the poor fool's jerkin through. 

Together they ran or ever they blan ; 

This was Dickie the fool, and he; 
Dickie could not win to him with the blade of the 
sword, 1 60 

But he fell'd him with the plummet under the eye. 

Now Dickie has fell'd Fair Johnnie Armstrong, 
The prettiest man in the south countrie; 

"Gramercie," then can Dickie say, 

"I had twa horse, thou has made me three." 



92 BALLADS AND POEMS 

He has ta'en the laird's jack off his back, 

The twa-handed sword that hang leugh by his thigh ; 

He has ta'en the steel cap off his head; 

"Johnnie, I'll tell my master I met with thee." 

When Johnnie waken'd out of his dream, 170 

I wot a dreary man was he; 
" Is thou gone now, Dickie, than ? 

The shame gae in thy companic ! 

" Is thou gone now, Dickie, than ? 

The shame go in thy companie! 
For if I should live this hundred year, 

I shall never fight with a fool after thee." 

Then Dickie corned home to lord and master, 

Even as fast as he may dree. 
" Now, Dickie, I shall neither eat meat nor drink 180 

Till high hanged that thou shall be!" 

"The shame speed the liars, my lord!" quo' Dickie, 
"That was no the promise ye made to me; 

For I'd never gone to Liddesdale to steal 
Till that I sought my leave at thee." 

" But what gart thou steal the Laird's Jock's horse ? 

And, limmer, what gart thou steal him ? " quo' he ; 
" For lang might thou in Cumberland dwelt 

Or the Laird's Jock had stoln aught frae thee." 

"Indeed I wot ye lied, my lord, 190 

And even so loud as I hear ye lie; 
I won him frae his man, Fair Johnnie Armstrong, 

Hand for hand on Cannobie lee. 



DICK O* THE COW 93 

" There 's tlie jack was on his back, 

The twa-handed sword that hung leugh by his thigh ; 
There 's the steel cap was on his head ; 

I have a' these tokens to let you see." 

"If that be true thou to me tells 

(I trow thou dare not tell a lie), 
I'll give thee twenty pound for the good horse, 200 

Well tell'd in thy cloak-lap shall be. 

"And I'll give thee one of my best milk-ky 
To maintain thy wife and children three; 

And that may be as good, I think, 
As ony twa o' thine might be." 

"The shame speed the liars, my lord!" quo' Dickie; 

" Trow ye ay to make a fool of me ? 
I'll either have thirty pound for the good horse, 

Or else he 's gae to Mattan Fair wi' me." 

Then he has given him thirty pound for the good 
horse, 210 

All in gold and good monie: 
He has given him one of his best milk-ky 

To maintain his wife and children three. 

Then Dickie 's come down through Carlisle town, 

Even as fast as he may dree. 
The first of men that he with met 

Was my lord's brother, Bailiff Grlazenberrie. 

" Well may ye be, my good Ralph Scrupe ! " 
" Welcome, my brother's fool ! " quo' he ; 

"Where did thou get Fair Johnnie Armstrong's 
horse ? " 220 

"Where did I get him but steal him," quo' he. 



94 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"But will thou sell me Fair Johnnie Armstrong's 
horse ? 

And, billie, will thou sell him to me?" quo' he; 
"Ay, and thou tell me the monie on my cloak-lap, 

For there's not one farthing I'll trust thee." 

"I'll give thee fifteen pound for the good horse, 

Well told on thy cloak-lap shall be; 
And I'll give thee one of my best milk-ky 

To maintain thy wife and thy children three." 

" The shame speed the liars, my lord ! " quo' Dickie, 230 
" Trow ye ay to make a fool of me ? " quo' he ; 

"I'll either have thirty pound for the good horse, 
Or else he's to Mattan Fair with me." 

He has given him thirty pound for the good horse, 

All in gold and good monie; 
He has given him one of his best milk-ky 

To maintain his wife and children three. 

Then Dickie lap a loup on high, 

And I wot a loud laughter leugh he; 

" I 'wish the neck of the third horse were broken, 240 
For I have a better of my own, and onie better 
can be." 

Then Dickie corned hame to his wife again. 

Judge ye how the poor fool he sped! 
He has given her three score of English pounds 

For the three auld co'erlets was ta'en off her bed. 

"Ha'e, take thee there twa as good ky, 

I trow, as all thy three might be; 
And yet here is a white-footed nag, 

I think he'll carry both thee and me. 



DICK O' THE COW 95 

"But I may no longer in Cumberland dwell; 250 
The Armstrongs they'll hang me high.'' 

But Dickie has ta'eri leave at lord and master, 
And Burgh under Stanemuir there dwells Dickie. 



EAEL BOTHWELL. 
(1568) 

Woe worth thee, woe worth thee, false Scotland! 

For thou hast ever wrought by a sleight; 
For the worthiest prince that ever was born 

You hanged under a cloud by night. 

The Queen of France a letter wrote, 

And sealed it with heart and ring, 
And bade him come Scotland within, 

And she would marry him and crown him king. 

To be a king, it is a pleasant thing, 

To be a prince unto a peer; 10 

But you have heard, and so have I too, 

A man may well buy gold too dear. 

There was an Italian in that place 
Was as well beloved as ever was he; 

Lord David was his name, 

Chamberlain unto the queen was he. 

For if the king had risen forth of his place, 
He would have sit him down in the chair, 

And tho' it beseemed him not so well, 

Altho' the king had been present there. 20 



96 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Some lords in Scotland waxed wondrous wroth, 
And quarrell'd with him for the nonce; 

I shall you tell how it befell; 
Twelve daggers were in him all at once. 

Then some of the lords of Scotland waxed wroth, 

And made their vow vehemently; 
"For death of the queen's chamberlain 

The king himself he shall die." 

They strowed his chamber over with gunpowder, 
And laid green rushes in his way; 30 

For the traitors thought that night 
The worthy king for to betray. 

To bed the worthy king made him bouii; 

To take his rest, that was his desire; 
He was no sooner cast on sleep 

But his chamber was on a blazing fire. 

Up he lope, and a glass window broke, 

He had thirty foot for to fall; 
Lord Bothwell kept a privy watch 

tTnderneath his castle wall. 4 

" Who have we here ? " said Lord Bothwell ; 

"Answer me, now I do call." 

"King Henry the Eighth my uncle was; 

Some pity show for his sweet sake! 
Ah, Lord Bothwell, I know thee well; 

Some pity on me I pray thee take ! " 

"I'll pity thee as much," he said, 

"And as much favour I'll show to thee, 

As thou had on the queen's chamberlain 

That day thou deemedst him to die." 5 



EARL BOTHWELL 97 

Through halls and towers this king they led, 
Through castles and towers that were high, 

Through an arbour into an orchard, 
And there hanged him in a pear tree. 

When the governor of Scotland he heard tell 

That the worthy king he was slain, 
He hath banished the queen so bitterly 

That in Scotland she dare not remain. 

But she is fled into merry England, 

And Scotland too aside hath lain, 60 

And through the Queen of England's good grace 

Now in England she doth remain. 

Traditional Ballad, 



THE RISING IN THE NORTH. 
(1569) 

Listen, lively lordings all, 

Lithe and listen unto me, 
And I will sing of a noble earl, 

The noblest earl in the North Countrie. 

Earl Percy is into his garden gone, 
And after him walks his fair ladie. 

"I hear a bird sing in my ear 
That I must either fight or flee." 

"Now heaven forefend, my dearest lord, 
That ever such harm should hap to thee, 

But go to London to the Court; 
And fair fall truth and honesty I" 

8 . 7 



98 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Now nay, now nay, my lady gay, 

Alas! thy counsel suits not me; 
Mine enemies prevail so fast 

That at the Court I may not be." 

"O go to the Court yet, good my lord, 
And take thy gallant men with thee, 

And if any dare to do you wrong 

Then your warrant they may be." 20 

"Now nay, now nay, thou lady fair, 

The Court is full of subtiltie, 
And if I go to the Court, lady, 

Never more I may thee see." 

"Yet go to the Court, my lord," she says, 

"And I myself will go wi' thee; 
At Court then for my dearest lord 

His faithful borrow I will be." 

"Now nay, now nay, my lady dear, 
Far lever had I lose my life 30 

Than leave among my cruel foes 
My love in jeopardy and strife. 

"But come thou hither, my little foot-page, 

Come thou hither unto me, 
To Maister Norton thou must go 

In all the haste that ever may be. 

"Commend me to that gentleman, 
And bear this letter here fro me, 

And say that earnestly I pray 

He will ride in my company." 40 



THE RISING IN THE NORTH 99 

One while the little foot-page went, 

And another while he ran, 
Until he came to his journey's end, 

The little foot-page never blan. 

When to that gentleman he came, 

Down he kneeled on his knee; 
Quoth he, "My lord commendeth him, 

And sends this letter unto thee." 

And when the letter it was read 

Afore that goodly company, 50 

I wis if you the truth would know, 

There was many a weeping eye. 

He said, "Come hither, Christopher Norton, 
A gallant youth thou seem'st to be, 

What dost thou counsel me, my son, 
Now that good earl's in jeopardy?" 

"Father, my counsel's fair and free, 

That earl he is a noble lord, 
And whatsoever to him you hight, 

I would not have you break your word." 60 

"Gramercy, Christopher, my son, 

Thy counsel well it liketh me, 
And if we speed and 'scape with life 

Well advanced shalt thou be. 

"Come you hither, my nine good sons, 

Gallant men I trow you be, 
How many of you, my children dear, 

Will stand by that good earl and me?" 

72 



100 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Eight of them did answer make, 

Eight of them spake hastilie: 70 

"0 father, till the day we die, 

We'll stand by that good earl and thee!" 

"Gramercy now, my children dear, 
You show yourselves right bold and brave, 

And whethersoe'er I live or die, 
A father's blessing you shall have. 

"But what say'st thou, Francis Norton? 

Thou art mine eldest son and heir; 
Somewhat lies brooding in thy breast: 

Whatever it be, to me declare." 80 

"Father, you are an ag&d man, 

Your head is white, your beard is gray; 

It were a shame at these your years, 
For you to rise in such a fray." 

"Now fie upon thee, coward Francis, 
Thou never learnedst this of me; 

When thou wert young and tender of age, 
Why did I make so much of thee ? " 

"But, father, I will wend with you, 

Unarmed and naked will I be, 90 

And he that strikes against the crown, 
Ever an ill death may he dee." 

Then rose that reverend gentleman, 
And with him came a goodly band 

To join the brave Earl Percy, 

And all the flower o' Northumberland. 



THE RISING IN THE NORTH 101 

With them the noble Neville came, 
The earl of "Westmoreland was he; 

At Wetherby they mustered their host, 

Thirteen thousand fair to see. 100 

Lord Westmoreland his ancient raised, 

The Dun Bull he raised on high; 
Three Dogs with golden collars 

Were there set out most royally. 

Earl Percy there his ancient spread, 
The Half-Moon shining all so fair; 

The Norton's ancient had the Cross, 
And the Five Wounds our Lord did bear. 

Then Sir George Bowes he straightway rose, 
After them some spoil to make; no 

Those noble earls turned back again, 
And aye they vowed that knight to take. 

The baron he to his castle fled, 

To Barnard Castle then fled he; 
The uttermost walls were easy to win; 

The earls have won them presently. 

The uttermost walls were lime and brick, 
But though they won them soon anon, 

Long ere they won the innermost walls, 
For they were cut in rock of stone. 120 

Then news unto leeve London came 
In all the speed that ever may be, 

And word is brought to our royal queen 
Of the rising in the North Countrie. 



102 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Her grace she turned her round about, 
And like a royal queen she swore, 

"I will ordain them such a breakfast 
As never was in the North before." 

She caused thirty thousand men be raised, 
With horse and harness fair to see, 130 

She caused thirty thousand men be raised 
To take the earls i' th' North Countrie. 

Wi' them the false Earl Warwick went, 
Th' Earl Sussex and the Lord Hunsden; 

Until they to York Castle came, 
I wis they never stint ne blan. 

Now spread thy ancient, Westmoreland, 
Thy Dun Bull fain would we spy, 

And thou, the Earl o' Northumberland, 

Now raise thy half-moon up on high! 140 

But the Dun Bull is fled and gone, 
And the Half-Moon vanished away; 

^he earls, though they were brave and bold, 
Against so many could not stay. 

Thee, Norton, wi' thine eight good sons, 
They doom'd to die, alas! for ruth! 

Thy reverend locks thee could not save, 
Nor them their fair and blooming youth. 

Wi' them full many a gallant wight 

They cruelly bereaved of life, 15 

And many a child made fatherless, 
And widowed many a tender wife. 

Traditional Ballad. 



MARY AMBREE 103 

MAKY AMBREB. 
(1584) 

When captains courageous, whom death could not 

daunt, 

Did march to the siege of the city of Gaunt, 
They mustered their soldiers by two and by three, 
And the foremost in battle was Mary Ambree. 

When brave Sir John Major was slain in her sight, 
Who was her true lover, her joy, and delight, 
Because he was slain most treacherouslie, 
Then vowed to revenge him Mary Ambree. 

She clothed herself from the top to the toe 

In buff of the bravest, most seemly to show; 10 

A fair shirt of mail then slipped on she; 

Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 

A helmet of proof she straight did provide, 
A strong arming sword she girt by her side, 
On her hand a goodly fair gauntlet put she; 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 

Then took she her sword and her target in hand, 
Bidding all such, as would, be of her band; 
To wait on her person came thousand and three; 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree ? 20 

"My soldiers," she saith, "so valiant and bold, 
Now follow your captain, whom you do behold; 
Still foremost in battle myself will I be." 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 



104 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Then cried out her soldiers, and loud they did say, 
"So well thou becomest this gallant array, 
Thy heart and thy weapons so well do agree, 
There was none ever like Mary Ambree." 

She cheered her soldiers, that foughten for life, 
With ancient and standard, with drum and with 
fife, 30 

With brave clanging trumpets, that sounded so free ; 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 

"Before I will see the worst of you all 
To come into danger of death, or of thrall, 
This hand and this life I will venture so free." 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 

She led up her soldiers in battle array, 

'Gainst three times their number by break of the day ; 

Seven hours in skirmish continued she; 

Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree ? 40 

She filled the skies with the smoke of her shot, 
And- her enemies' bodies with bullets so hot; 
For one of her own men a score killed she; 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 

And when her false gunner, to spoil her intent, 
Away all her pellets and powder had sent, 
Straight with her keen weapon she slashed him in 

three ; 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 

Being falsely betrayed for lucre of hire, 
At length she was forced to make a retire; 50 

Then her soldiers into a strong castle drew she; 
Was not this a brave bonny lass, Mary Ambree? 



MARY AMBREE 105 

Her foes they beset her on every side, 
As thinking close siege she could never abide; 
To beat down the walls they all did decree: 
But stoutly defied them brave Mary Ambree. 

Then took she her sword and her target in hand, 
And mounting the walls all undaunted did stand, 
There daring their captains to match any three; 
O, what a brave captain was Mary Ambree! 60 

" Now say, English captain, what wouldest thou give 
To ransom thyself, which else must not live? 
Come yield thyself quickly or slain thou must be." 
Then smiled sweetly brave Mary Ambree. 

"Ye captains courageous, of valour so bold, 
Whom think you before you now you do behold? 
No knight, sirs, of England, nor captain you see, 
But a poor simple lass, called Mary Ambree." 

"But art thou a woman as thou dost declare, 
Whose valour hath proved so undaunted in war ? 70 
If England doth yield such brave lasses as thee, 
Full well may they conquer, fair Mary Ambree!" 

Then to her own country she back did return, 
Still holding the foes of fair England in scorn; 
Therefore English captains of every degree 
Sing forth the brave valours of Mary Ambree. 

Traditional Ballad. 



106 BALLADS AND POEMS 

BRAVE LORD WILLOUGHBY. 
(158-) 

The fifteenth day of July, 

With glistering spear and shield, 
A famous fight in Flanders 

Was foughten in the field; 
The most courageous officers 

Were English captains three, 
But the bravest man in battle 

Was brave Lord Willoughby. 

The next was Captain Norris, 

A valiant man was he; 
The other, Captain Turner, 

From field would never flee. 
With fifteen hundred fighting men 

Alas, there were no more, 
They fought with fourteen thousand men 

Upon the bloody shore. 

"Stand to it, noble pikemen, 

And look you round about! 
And shoot you right, you bowmen, 

And we will keep them out! 
You musquet and caliver men, 

Do you prove true to me; 
I'll be the foremost man in fight ! " 

Says brave Lord Willoughby. 



BRAVE LORD WILLOUGHBY 107 

And then the bloody enemy 

They fiercely did assail; 
And fought it out most furiously, 

Not doubting to prevail. 
The wounded men on both sides fell, 

Most piteous for to see, 30 

Yet nothing could the courage quell 

Of brave Lord Willoughby. 

For seven hours, to all men's view, 

The fight endured sore. 
Until our men so feeble grew 

That they could fight no more. 
And then upon dead horses 

Full savourly they ate, 
And drank the puddle-water 

They could no better get. 40 

When they had fed so freely, 

They kneeled on the ground, 
And praised God devoutly 

For the favour they had found; 
And beating up their colours, 

The fight they did renew, 
And turning toVrds the Spaniard, 

A thousand more they slew. 

The sharp steel-pointed arrows 

And bullets thick did fly; 50 

Then did our valiant soldiers 

Charge on most furiously; 
Which made the Spaniards waver, 

They thought it best to flee; 
They feared the stout behaviour 

Of brave Lord Willoughby. 



108 BALLADS AND POEMS 

And then the fearful enemy 

Was quickly put to flight; 
Our men pursued courageously 

And caught their forces quite. 60 

But at last they gave a shout 

Which echoed through the sky; 
"God and Saint George for England 1" 

The conquerors did cry. 

This news was brought to England, 

With all the speed might be, 
And soon our gracious Queen was told 

Of this same victory. 
"0 this is brave Lord Willoughby, 

My love that ever won; 7 

Of all the Lords of honour 

'Tis he great deeds hath done." 

To the soldiers that were maimed 

And wounded in the fray, 
The Queen allowed a pension 

Of fifteenpence a day: 
And from all costs and charges 

She quit and set them free; 
And this she did all for the sake 

Of brave Lord Willoughby. 80 

Then, courage! noble Englishmen, 

And never be dismayed: 
If that we be but one to ten 

We will not be afraid 
To fight with foreign enemies, 

And set our nation free ; 
And thus I end the bloody bout 

Of brave Lord Willoughby. 

Anon. 



THE ARMADA 109 




Attend, all ye who list to hear our noble England's 

praise ; 
I tell of the thrice famous deeds she wrought in 

ancient days, 
When that great fleet invincible against her bore in 

vain 
The richest spoils of Mexico, the stoutest hearts of 

Spain. 

It was about the lovely close of a warm summer 

day, 
There came a gallant merchant-ship full sail to 

Plymouth Bay; 
Her crew hath seen Castile's black fleet, beyond 

Aurigny's isle, 
At earliest twilight, on the waves lie heaving many 

a mile. 
At sunrise she escaped their van, by God's especial 

grace; 
And the tall Pinta, till the noon, had held her close 

in chase. 10 

Forthwith a guard at every gun was placed along 

the wall; 
The beacon blazed upon the roof of Edgecumbe's 

lofty hall; 
Many a light fishing-bark put out to pry along the 

coast, 
And with loose rein and bloody spur rode inland 

many a post. 



110 BALLADS AND POEMS 

With his white hair unbonneted, the stout old sheriff 

comes ; 
Behind him march the halberdiers ; before him sound 

the drums; 
His yeomen round the market cross make clear an 

ample space; 
For there behoves him to set up the standard of Her 

Grace. 
And haughtily the trumpets peal, and gaily dance 

the bells, 
As slow upon the labouring wind the royal blazon 

swells. 20 

Look how the Lion of the sea lifts up his ancient 

crown, 
And underneath his deadly paw treads the gay lilies 

down! 
So stalked he when he turned to flight on that famed 

Picard field 
Bohemia's plume, and Genoa's bow, and Caesar's eagle 

shield. 
So glared he when at Agincourt in wrath he turned 

to bay, 
And crushed and torn beneath his claws the princely 

hunters lay. 
Ho ! strike the flagstaff deep, Sir Knight : ho ! scatter 

flowers, fair maids: 
Ho! gunners, fire a loud salute: ho! gallants, draw 

your blades: 
Thou sun, shine on her joyously: ye breezes, waft 

her wide; 
Our glorious SEMPER EADEM, the banner of our 

pride. 30 



THE ARMADA 111 

The freshening breeze of eve unfurled that banner's 

massy fold; 
The parting gleam of sunshine kissed that haughty 

scroll of gold; 
Night sank upon the dusky beach and on the purple 

sea, 
Such night in England ne'er had been, nor e'er again 

shall be. 
From Eddystone to Berwick bounds, from Lynn to 

Milford Bay, 
Tha>t time of slumber was as bright and busy as the 

day; 

For swift to east and swift to west the ghastly war- 
flame spread, 
High on Saint Michael's Mount it shone : it shone on 

Beachy Head. 
Far on the deep the Spaniard saw, along each southern 

shire, 
Cape beyond cape, in endless range, those twinkling 

points of fire. 40 

The fisher left his skiff to rock on Tamar's glittering 

waves : 

The rugged miners poured to war from Mendip's sun 
less caves! 
O'er Longleat's towers, o'er Cranbourne's oaks, the 

fiery herald flew: 
He roused the shepherds of Stonehenge, the rangers 

of Beaulieu. 
Eight sharp and quick the bells all night rang out 

from Bristol town, 
And ere the day three hundred horse had met on 

Clifton down; 



112 BALLADS AND POEMS 

The sentinel on Whitehall gate looked forth into the 

night, 
And saw o'erhanging Richmond Hill the streak of 

blood-red light: 
Then bugle's note and cannon's roar the death-like 

silence broke, 
And with one start, and with one cry, the royal city 

woke. 5 

At once on all her stately gates arose the answering 

fires; 
At once the wild alarum clashed from all her reeling 

spires; 
From all the batteries of the Tower pealed loud the 

voice of fear; 
And all the thousand masts of Thames sent back a 

louder cheer; 
And from the furthest wards was heard the rush of 

hurrying feet, 
And the broad streams of pikes and flags rushed 

down each roaring street; 
And broader still became the blaze, and louder still 

the din, 
As fast from every village round the horse came 

spurring in. 
And eastward straight from wild Blackheath the 

warlike errand went, 
And roused in many an ancient hall the gallant 

squires of Kent. 60 

Southward from Surrey's pleasant hills flew those 

bright couriers forth; 
High on bleak Hampstead's swarthy moor they started 

for the north; 



THE ARMADA 113 

And on, and on, without a pause, untired they bounded 

still : 
All night from tower to tower they sprang; they 

sprang from hill to hill: 
Till the proud Peak unfurled the flag o'er Darwin's 

rocky dales, 
Till like volcanoes flared to heaven the stormy hills 

of Wales, 
Till twelve fair counties saw the blaze on Malvern's 

lonely height, 
Till streamed in crimson on the wind the Wrekin's 

crest of light, 
Till broad and fierce the star came forth on Ely's 

stately fane, 
And tower and hamlet rose in arms o'er all the 

boundless plain; 70 

Till Belvoir's lordly terraces the sign to Lincoln sent, 
And Lincoln sped the message on o'er the wide vale 

of Trent; 
Till Skiddaw saw the fire that burned on Gaunt's 

embattled pile, 
And the red glare on Skiddaw roused the burghers 

of Carlisle. 

LORD MACAULAY. 



114 BALLADS AND POEMS 

THE DEFEAT OF THE SPANISH ARMADA. 
(1588) 

Some years of late, in eighty- eight, 

As I do well remember, 
It was, some say, the nineteenth of May, 

And some say in September, 

And some say in September. 

The Spanish train launch'd forth amain, 

With many a fine bravado, 
Their (as they thought, but it proved not) 

Invincible Armado, 

Invincible Armado. 10 

There was a little man, that dwelt in Spain, 

Who shot well in a gun-a, 
Don Pedro hight, as black a wight 

As the Knight of the Sun-a, 

As the Knight of the Sun-a. 

King Philip made him admiral, 

And bid him not to stay-a, 
Bat to destroy both man and boy, 

And so to come away-a, 

And so to come away-a. 20 

Their navy was well victualled, 

With biscuit, pease and bacon; 
They brought two ships, well fraught with whips, 

But I think they were mistaken, 

But I think they were mistaken. 



THE DEFEAT OF THE SPANISH ARMADA 115 

Their men were young, munition strong, 

And, to do us more harm-a, 
They thought it meet to join the fleet, 

All with the Prince of Parma, 

All with the Prince of Parma. 30 

They coasted round about our land, 

And so came in by Dover; 
But we had men set on 'urn, then, 

And threw the rascals over, 

And threw the rascals over. 

The Queen was then at Tilbury; 

What could we more desire-a? 
And Sir Francis Drake, for her sweet sake, 

Did set them all on fire-a, 

Did set them all on fire-a. 40 

Then straight they fled, by sea and land, 

That one man kill'd three score-a; 
And had not they all ran away, 

In truth, he had kill'd more-a, 

In truth, he had kill'd more-a. 

Then let them neither brag nor boast, 

But, if they come agen-a, 
Let them take heed, they do not speed 

As they did, you know when-a, 

As they did, you know when-a. 50 

Anon. 



82 



116 BALLADS AND POEMS 

THE FAME OF SIR FRANCIS DRAKE. 
(Drake d. 1595) 

Sir Drake, whom well the world's end knew, 

Which thou did compass round, 
And whom both poles of heaven once saw, 

Which north and south do bound; 

The stars above would make thee known, 

If men here silent were; 
The sun himself cannot forget 

His fellow-traveller. 

Anon. 

CAPTAIN WARD AND THE RAINBOW. 
(c. 1605) 

Strike up, you lusty gallants, 

With music and sound of drum, 
For we have descried a rover, 

Upon the sea is come; 
His name is Captain Ward, 

Right well it doth appear, 
There has not been such a rover 

Found out this thousand year. 

For he hath sent unto our king, 

The sixth of January, 10 

Desiring that he might come in, 

With all his company; 



CAPTAIN WARD AND THE RAINBOW 11 7 

"And if your king will let me corne 

Till I my tale have told, 
I will bestow for my ransom 

Full thirty ton of gold." 



"0 nay, nay," then said our king, 

" nay, this may not be, 
To yield to such a rover, 

Myself will not agree; 20 

He hath deceived the Frenchman, 

Likewise the King of Spain, 
And how can he be true to me 

That hath been false to twain?" 

With that our king provided 

A ship of worthy fame, 
Rainbow she is called, 

If you would know her name; 
Now the gallant Rainbow 

She rows upon the sea, 30 

Five hundred gallant seamen 

To bear her company. 

The Dutchman and the Spaniard 

She made them for to flee, 
Also the bonny Frenchman, 

As she met him on the sea. 
Whereas this gallant Rainbow 

Did come where Ward did lie, 
"Where is the captain of this ship?" 

This gallant Rainbow did cry. 40 



118 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"O that am I," says Captain Ward, 

"There's no man bids me lie, 
And if thou art the king's fair ship, 

Thou art welcome unto me." 
"I'll tell thee what," says Rainbow, 

"Our king is in great grief 
That thou shouldst lie upon the sea 

And play the arrant thief; 



"And will not let our merchants' ships 

Pass as they did before; 50 

Such tidings to our king is come, 

Which grieves his heart full sore." 
With that this gallant Rainbow, 

She shot, out of her pride, 
Full fifty gallant brass pieces, 

Charged on every side. 

And yet these gallant shooters 

Prevailed not a pin; 
Though they were brass on the outside, 

Brave Ward was steel within; 60 

"Shoot on, shoot on," says Captain Ward, 

"Your sport well pleaseth me, 
And he that first gives over 

Shall yield unto the sea. 



" I never wronged an English ship, 
But Turk and King of Spain, 

For and the jovial Dutchman 
As I met on the main. 



CAPTAIN WARD AND THE RAINBOW 119 

If I had known your king 

But one-two years before, 70 

I would have saved brave Essex' life, 

Whose death did grieve me sore. 

"Go tell the King of England, 

Go tell him thus from me, 
If he reign king of all the land, 

I will reign king at sea." 
With that the gallant Rainbow shot, 

And shot, and shot in vain, 
And left the rover's company, 

And returned home again. So 

"Our royal King of England, 

Your ship's returned again, 
For Ward's ship is so strong 

It never will be ta'en." 
" everlasting 1 " says our king, 

"I have lost jewels three, 
Which would have gone unto the seas 

And brought proud Ward to me. 

"The first was Lord Clifford, 

Earl of Cumberland; 90 

The second was the Lord Mount joy, 

As you shall understand; 
The third was brave Essex, 

From field would never flee; 
Which would 'a' gone unto the seas, 

And brought proud Ward to me." 

Tradltloiial Ballad. 



120 BALLADS AND POEMS 

WHEN THE KING ENJOYS HIS OWN AGAIN. 
(1643) 

What Booker can prognosticate, 
Concerning kings or kingdom's fate ? 
I think myself to be as wise 
As he that gazeth on the skies: 

My skill goes beyond 

The depths of a Pond 
Or Rivers in the greatest rainj 

Whereby I can tell, 

All things will be well, 
When the King enjoys his own again. 10 

There's neither Swallow, Dove, nor Dade 
Can soar more high, nor deeper wade; 
Nor show a reason from the stars, 
What causeth peace or civil wars; 
The man in the moon 
May wear out his shoon, 
By running after Charles his wain; 
But all's to no end, 
For the times will not mend 
Till the King enjoys his own again. 20 

Though for a time we see Whitehall 
With cobwebs hanging on the wall, 
Instead of silk and silver wave, 
Which formerly it used to have; 
With rich perfume 
In every room, 



WHEN THE KING ENJOYS HIS OWN AGAIN 121 

Delightful to that princely train, 

Which again you shall see, 

When the time it shall be 
That the King enjoys his own again. 3 

Full forty years the royal crown 
Hath been his father's and his own; 
And is there anyone but he, 
That in the same should sharer be ? 

For who better may 

The sceptre sway, 
Than he that hath such right to reign? 

Then let's hope for a peace, 

For the wars will not cease, 
Till the King enjoys his own again. 40 

Till then upon Ararat's hill 
My Hope shall cast her anchor still, 
Until I see some peaceful dove 
Bring home the branch I dearly love: 

Then will I wait 

Till the waters abate, 
Which now disturb my troubled brain, 

Else never rejoice 

Till I hear the voice, 
That the King enjoys his own again. 50 

MAETIN PARKER. 



122 BALLADS AND POEMS 



SIR NICHOLAS AT MAESTON MOOR. 
(1644) 

To horse ! to horse, Sir Nicholas, the clarion's note is 

high! 
To horse ! to horse, Sir Nicholas, the big drum makes 

reply ! 
Ere this hath Lucas marched, with his gallant 

cavaliers, 
And the bray of Rupert's trumpets grows fainter on 

our ears. 
To horse ! to horse 1 Sir Nicholas ! White Guy is at the 

door, 
And the vulture whets his beak o'er the field of 

Marston Moor. 

Up rose the Lady Alice from her brief and broken 
prayer, 

And she brought a silken standard down the narrow 
turret-stair ; 

Oh ! many were the tears that those radiant eyes had 
shed, 

As she worked the bright word "Glory" in the gay 
and glancing thread; 10 

And mournful was the smile which o'er those beau 
teous features ran, 

As she said: "It is your lady's gift; unfurl it in the 
van 1 " 



SIR NICHOLAS AT MARSTON MOOR 123 

"It shall flutter, noble wench, where the best and 

boldest ride, 
Thro' the steel-clad files of Skippon, the black dragoons 

of Pride ; 

The recreant soul of Fairfax will feel a sicklier qualm, 
And the rebel lips of Oliver give out a louder psalm, 
When they see my lady's gewgaw flaunt bravely on 

their wing, 
And hear her loyal soldiers' shout, For God and for 

the King ! " 

'Tis noon. The ranks are broken, along the royal line 
They fly, the braggarts of the court 1 the bullies of the 

Rhine! 20 

Stout Langley's cheer is heard no more, and Astley's 

helm is down, 
And Rupert sheathes his rapier with a curse and Avith 

a frown, 
And cold Newcastle mutters, as he follows in the 

flight, 
" The German boar had better far have supped in York 

to-night." 

The knight is all alone, his steel cap cleft in twain, 
His good buff jerkin crimsoned o'er with many a gory 

stain ; 
Yet still he waves the standard, and cries amid the 

rout, 
" For Church and King, fair gentlemen ! spur on, and 

fight it out ! " 
And now he wards a Roundhead's pike, and now he 

hums a stave, 
And here he quotes a stage-play, and there he fells a 

knave. 30 



124 BALLADS AND POEMS 

God speed to thee, Sir Nicholas ! thou hast no thought 

of fear; 
G-od speed to thee, Sir Nicholas ! but fearful odds are 

here! 
The traitors ring thee round, and with every blow and 

thrust, 
"Down, down," they cry, "with Belial! down with him 

to the dust!" 
" I would," quoth grim old Oliver, " that Belial's trusty 

sword 
This day were doing battle for the Saints and for the 

Lord!" 

The Lady Alice sits with her maidens in her bower, 

The grey-haired warden watches from the castle's 
highest tower; 

"What news ? what news, old Anthony?"" The field 
is lost and won : 

The ranks of war are melting as the mists beneath the 
sun ! 4 

And a wounded man speeds hither I'm old and can 
not see, 

Or sure I am that sturdy step my master's step should 
be!" 

"I bring thee back the standard from as rude and 

rough a fray 
As e'er was proof of soldier's thews, or theme for 

minstrel's lay! 
Bid Hubert fetch the silver bowl, and liquor quantum 

suff.; 
I'll make a shift to drain it, ere I part with boot and 

buff 



SIR NICHOLAS AT MARSTON MOOR 125 

Though Guy through many a gaping wound is 

breathing out his life, 
And I come to thee a landless man, my fond and 

faithful wife. 

"Sweet! we will fill our money-bags, and freight a 

ship for France, 
And mourn in merry Paris for this poor realm's 

mischance : 5 

Or if the worst betide me, why better axe or rope, 
Than life with Lenthall for a king, and Peters for a 

pope! 
Alas ! alas ! my gallant Guy ! out on the crop-eared 

boor 
That sent me, with my standard, on foot from Marston 

Moor!" 

W. M. PRAED. 



THE BATTLE OF NASEBY. 
(1645) 

Oh, wherefore come ye forth in triumph from the 

north, 
With your hands, and your feet, and your raiment 

all red? 
And wherefore doth your rout send forth a joyous 

shout ? 

And whence be the grapes of the wine-press which 
ye tread? 



126 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Oh, evil was the root, and bitter was the fruit, 
And crimson was the juice of the vintage that we 

trod; 
For we trampled on the throng of the haughty and 

the strong, 

Who sate in the high places, and slew the saints 
of God. 

It was about the noon of a glorious day of June, 
That we saw their banners dance, and their cuirasses 
shine, I0 

And the Man of Blood was there, with his long es- 

senced hair, 

And Astley, and Sir Marmaduke, and Rupert of the 
Rhine. 

Like a servant of the Lord, with his Bible and his 

sword, 

The general rode along us to form us to the fight, 
When a murmuring sound broke out, and swelled into 

a shout, 
Among the godless horsemen upon the tyrant's right. 

And hark ! like the roar of the billows on the shore, 
The cry of battle rises along their charging line! 

For God! for the Cause! for the Church! for the Laws! 

For Charles King of England, and Rupert of the 

Rhine ! 20 

The furious German comes, with his clarions and his 

drums, 

His bravoes of Alsatia and pages of Whitehall; 
They are bursting on our flanks. Grasp your pikes, 

close your ranks ; 
For Rupert never comes but to conquer or to fall. 



THE BATTLE OF NAREBY 127 

They are here ! They rush on ! We are broken ! We 

are gone! 
Our left is borne before them like stubble on the 

blast. 
Lord, put forth thy might! O Lord, defend the 

right! 

Stand back to back, in God's name, and fight it to 
the last. 



Stout Skippon hath a wound; the centre hath given 

ground. 

Hark ! hark ! What means the trampling of horse 
men on our rear ? 30 
Whose banner do I see, boys ? "Tis he, thank Grod, 'tis 

he, boys. 
Bear up another minuto: brave Oliver is here. 



Their heads all stooping low, their points all in a row, 
Like a whirlwind on the trees, like a deluge on the 
dykes, 

Our cuirassiers have burst on the ranks of the Accurst, 
And at a shock have scattered the forest of his pikes. 



Fast, fast, the gallants ride, in some safe nook to hide 
Their coward heads, predestined to rot on Temple 

Bar, 
And he he turns, he flies: shame on those cruel 

eyes 

That bore to look on torture, and dare not look on 
war 1 40 



128 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Ho ! comrades, scour the plain ; and, ere ye strip the 

slain, 

First give another stab to make your search secure ; 
Then shake from sleeves and pockets their broad- 
pieces and lockets, 
The tokens of the wanton, the plunder of the poor. 



Fools ! your doublets shone with gold, and your hearts 

were gay and bold, 
When you kissed your lily hands to your lenians 

to-day ; 
And to-morrow shall the fox, from her chambers in the 

rocks, 
Lead forth her tawny cubs to howl above the prey. 

Where be your tongues that late mocked at heaven 

and hell and fate, 

And the fingers that once were so busy with your 

blades, 50 

Your perfumed satin clothes, your catches and your 

oaths, 

Your stage-plays and your sonnets, your diamonds 
and your spades ? 

Down, down, for ever down with the mitre and the 

crown, 
With the Belial of the Court, and the Mammon of 

the Pope; 
There is woe in Oxford halls; there is wail in Durham's 

stalls ; 

The Jesuit smites his bosom; the bishop rends his 
cope. 



THE BATTLE OF NASEBY 129 

And she of the seven hills shall mourn her children's 

ills, 
And tremble when she thinks on the edge of 

England's sword; 
And the kings of earth in fear shall shudder when they 

hear 

What the hand of God hath wrought for the Houses 
and the Word. 60 

LORD MACAULAY. 



ON THE LORD GENERAL FAIRFAX AT 
THE SIEGE OF COLCHESTER. 

(1648) 

Fairfax, whose name in arms through Europe rings, 
Filling each mouth with envy or with praise, 
And all her jealous monarchs with amaze, 
And rumours loud that daunt remotest kings, 

Thy firm unshaken virtue ever brings 
Victory home, though new rebellions raise 
Their Hydra heads, and the false North displays 
Her broken league to imp their serpent wings. 

yet a nobler task awaits thy hand 

(For what can war but endless war still breed ?) 10 
Till truth and right from violence be freed, 

And public faith cleared from the shameful brand 
Of public fraud. In vain doth Valour bleed, 
While Avarice and Rapine share the land. 

JOHN MILTON. 



130 BALLADS AND POEMS 



AN HORATIAN ODE UPON CROMWELL'S 
RETURN FROM IRELAND. 

(1650) 

The forward youth that would appear, 
Must now forsake his Muses dear, 

Nor in the shadows sing 

His numbers languishing. 

'Tis time to leave the books in dust, 
And oil the unused armour's rust, 

Removing from the wall 

The corslet of the hall. 

So restless Cromwell could not cease 
In the inglorious arts of peace, 

But through adventurous war 

Urged his active star: 

And like the three-fork'd lightning, first 
Breaking the clouds where it was nurst, 

Did thorough his own Side 

His fiery way divide : 

For 'tis all one to courage high, 
The emulous, or enemy; 

And with such, to enclose 

Is more than to oppose; 

Then burning through the air he went 
And palaces and temples rent; 
And Caesar's head at last 
Did through his laurels blast. 



AN ODE UPON CROMWELL'S RETURN FROM IRELAND 131 

"Pis madness to resist or blame 
The face of angry heaven's flame; 

And if we would speak true, 

Much to the Man is due 

Who, from his private gardens, where 

He lived reserved and austere, 30 

(As if his highest plot 

To plant the bergamot,) 

Could by industrious valour climb 
To ruin the great work of time 

And cast the Kingdoms old 

Into another mould; 

Though Justice against Fate complain, 
And plead the ancient Rights in vain 

But those do hold or break 

As men are strong or weak; 40 

Nature, that hateth emptiness, 
Allows of penetration less, 

And therefore must make room 

Where greater spirits come. 

What field of all the civil war 

Where his were not the deepest scar ? . 

And Hampton shows what part 

He had of wiser art, 

Where, twining subtle fears with hope, 

He wove a net of such a scope 50 

That Charles himself might chase 

To Carisbrook's narrow case, 

92 



132 BALLADS AND POEMS 

That thence the Royal actor borne 
The tragic scaffold might adorn: 

While round the armed bands 

Did clap their bloody hands. 

He nothing common did or mean 
Upon that memorable scene, 

But with his keener eye 

The axe's edge did try; 60 

Nor oall'd the Gods, with vulgar spite, 
To vindicate his helpless right; 

But bow'd his comely head 

Down, as upon a bed. 

This was that memorable hour 
Which first assured the forced power: 

So when they did design 

The Capitol's first line, 

A Bleeding Head, where they begun, 

Did fright the architects to run; 70 

And yet in that the State 

Foresaw its happy fate! 

And now the- Irish are ashamed 
To see themselves in one year tamed: 
So much one man can do 
That does both act and know. 

They can affirm his praises best, 
And have, though overcome, confest 

How good he is, how just 

And fit for highest trust. 80 



AN ODE UPON CROMWELL'S RETURN FROM IRELAND 133 

Nor yet grown stiff er with command, 
But still in the Republic's hand 

How fit he is to sway 

That can so well obey! 

He to the Common's feet presents 
A Kingdom for his first year's rents, 

And (what he may) forbears 

His fame, to make it theirs: 

And has his sword and spoils ungirt 

To lay them at the Public's skirt. 90 

So when the falcon high 

Falls heavy from the sky, 

She, having kill'd, no more doth search 
But on the next green bough to perch, 

Where, when he first does lure, 

The falconer has her sure. 

What may not then our Isle presume 
While Victory his crest does plume? 

What may not others fear 

If thus he crowns each year? 100 

As Caesar he, ere long, to Gaul, 
To Italy an Hannibal, 

And to all States not free 

Shall climacteric be. 

The Pict no shelter now shall find 

Within his parti-colour'd mind, 
But from this valour sad 
Shrink underneath the plaid 



134 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Happy, if in the tufted brake 

The English hunter him mistake. no 

Nor lay his hounds in near 

The Caledonian deer. 

But thou, the War's and Fortune's son, 
March indefatigably on; 

And for the last effect 

Still keep the sword erect: 

Besides the force it has to fright 
The spirits of the shady night, 

The same arts that did gain 

A power, must it maintain. 120 

ANDREW MAEVELL. 

TO CROMWELL. 
(1652) 

Cromwell, our chief of men, who through a cloud 
Not of war only, but detractions rude, 
Guided by faith and matchless fortitude, 
To peace and truth thy glorious way hast ploughed, 

And on the neck of crowned Fortune proud 
Hast reared God's trophies, and his work pursued ; 
While Darwen stream, with blood of Scots imbrued, 
And Dunbar field, resounds thy praises loud, 

And Worcester's laureate wreath: yet much remains 
To conquer still; Peace hath her victories 10 

No less renowned than War: new foes arise, 

Threatening to bind our souls with secular chains. 
Help us to save free conscience from the paw 
Of hireling wolves, whose Gospel is their maw. 

JOHN MILTON. 



THE FIRE OF LONDON 135 

THE FIRE OF LONDON 

(selected from "Annus Mirabilis"). 

(1666) 

Swell'd with our late successes on the foe, 
Which France and Holland wanted power to cross, 

We urge an unseen fate to lay us low, 

And feed their envious eyes with English loss. 

Each element His dread command obeys, 
Who makes or ruins with a smile or frown; 

Who, as by one He did our nation raise, 
So now He with another pulls us down. 

Yet, London! empress of the northern clime, 
By an high fate thou greatly didst expire; 10 

Great as the world's, which, at the death of Time, 
Must fall, and rise a nobler frame by fire. 

As when some dire usurper heaven provides, 
To scourge his country with a lawless sway; 

His birth, perhaps, some petty village hides, 
And sets his cradle out of fortune's way: 

Till fully ripe his swelling fate breaks out, 
And hurries him to mighty mischiefs on; 

His prince, surprised at first, no ill could doubt, 
And wants the power to meet it when 'tis known : 20 

Such was the rise of this prodigious Fire, 

Which in mean buildings first obscurely bred, 

From thence did soon to open streets aspire, 
And straight to palaces and temples spread. 



136 BALLADS AND POEMS 

The diligence of trades and noiseful gain, 
And luxury, more late, asleep was laid; 

All was the Night's, and in her silent reign 
No sound the rest of Nature did invade. 

In this deep quiet, from what source unknown, 
Those seeds of fire their fatal birth disclose; 3 

And first few scattering sparks about were blown 
Big with the flames that to our ruin rose. 

Then in some close-pent room it crept along 
And, smouldering as it went, in silence fed; 

Till the infant monster, with devouring strong, 
Walk'd boldly upright with exalted head. 

Now like some rich and mighty murderer, 

Too great for prison, which he breaks with gold, 

Who fresher for new mischiefs doth appear 

And dares the world to tax him with the old, 40 

So scapes the insulting fire his narrow jail 
And makes small outlets into open air; 

There the fierce winds his tender force assail 
And beat him downward to his first repair. 

And now, no longer letted of his prey, 
He leaps up at it with enraged desire, 

O'erlooks the neighbours with a wide survey, 
And nods at every house his threatening fire. 

The ghosts of traitors from the Bridge descend, 
With bold fanatic spectres to rejoice ; 50 

About the fire into a dance they bend, 

And sing their Sabbath notes with feeble voice. 



THE FIRE OF LONDON 137 

Our guardian angel saw them where they sate, 
Above the palace of our slumbering king; 

He sigh'd, abandoning his charge to Fate, 

And drooping, oft looked back upon the wing. 

At length the crackling noise and dreadful blaze 
Call'd up some waking lover to the sight; 

And long it was ere he the rest could raise 
Whose heavy eyelids yet were full of night. 60 

The next to danger, hot pursued by fate, 
Half -clothed, half -naked, hastily retire; 

And frighted mothers strike their breasts too late, 
For helpless infants left amidst the fire. 

Their cries soon waken all the dwellers near; 

Now murmuring noises rise in every street; 
The more remote run stumbling with their fear, 

And in the dark men jostle as they meet. 

Now streets grow throng'd, and busy as by day: 
Some run for buckets to the hallowed quire; 70 

Some cut the pipes, and some the engines play, 
And some, more bold, mount ladders to the fire. 

Old father Thames raised up his reverend head, 
But fear'd the fate of Simois would return; 

Deep in his ooze he sought his sedgy bed, 
And shrunk his waters back into his urn. 

The fire, meantime, walks in a broader gross; 

To either hand his wings he opens wide; 
He wades the streets, and straight he reaches 'cross, 

And plays his longing flames on th' other side. 80 



138 BALLADS AND POEMS 

At first they warm, then scorch, and then they take; 

Now with long necks from side to side they feed; 
At length, grown strong, their mother-fire forsake, 

And a new colony of flames succeed. 

Now day appears, and with the day the king, 
Whose early care had robb'd him of his rest; 

Far off the cracks of falling houses ring, 

And shrieks of subjects pierce his tender breast. 

Himself directs what first is to be done, 

And orders all the succours which they bring; 9 

The helpful and the good about him run, 
And form an army worthy such a king. 

No help avails; for, Hydra-like, the Fire 
Lifts up his hundred heads to aim his way; 

And scarce the wealthy can one half retire, 
Before he rushes in to share the prey. 

At length the Almighty cast a pitying eye, 
And mercy softly touch'd his melting breast; 

He saw the town's one half in rubbish lie, 

And eager flames drive on to storm the rest, too 

The vanquish' d fires withdraw from every place, 
Or, full with feeding, sink into a sleep: 

Each household genius shows again his face, 
And from the hearths the little Lares creep. 

Methinks already from this chemic flame, 

I see a city of more precious mould; 
Rich as the town which gives the Indies name, 

With silver paved, and all divine with gold. 



THE FIRE OF LONDON 139 

Already labouring with, a mighty fate, 

She shakes the rubbish from her mountain brow, 1 10 
And seems to have renew'd her charter's date, 

Which heaven will to the death of Time allow. 

More great than human now, and more august, 
Now deified she from her fires does rise; 

Her widening streets on new foundations trust, 
And opening into larger parts she flies. 

Before, she like some shepherdess did show, 
Who sat to bathe her by a river's side; 

Not answering to her fame, but rude and low, 
Nor taught the beauteous arts of modern pride. 120 

Now, like a Maiden Queen, she will behold, 
From her high turrets, hourly suitors come; 

The East with incense, and the West with gold, 
Will stand like suppliants to receive her doom. 

The silver Thames, her own domestic flood, 
Shall bear her vessels like a sweeping train; 

And often wind, as of his mistress proud, 
With longing eyes to meet her face again. 

JOHN DRYDEN. 



140 BALLADS AND POEMS 

THE SONG- OF THE WESTERN MEN. 
(1688) 

A good sword and a trusty hand, 

A merry heart and true! 
King James's men shall understand 

What Cornishmen can do. 

And have they fixed the where and when 

And shall Trelawney die? 
Then twenty thousand Cornish men 

Will know the reason why! 

Out spake the captain, brave and bold, 

A merry wight was he; 10 

Though London Tower were Michael's hold, 
We'll set Trelawney free. 

We'll cross the Tamar, land to land, 

The Severn is no stay; 
And side by side, and hand in hand, 

And who shall bid us nay? 

And when we come to London wall, 

A pleasant sight to view; 
Come forth, come forth, ye cowards, all; 

Here are better men than you! 20 

Trelawney he's in keep in hold, 

Trelawney he may die, 
But twenty thousand Cornish bold 

Will know the reason why! 

R. S. HAWKER. 



THE BURIAL MARCH OF DUNDEE 141 

THE BURIAL MARCH OF DUNDEE. 
(Battle of Killiecrankie, 1689) 

On the heights of Killiecrankie 

Y ester-morn our army lay; 
Slowly rose the mist in columns 

From the river's broken way; 
Hoarsely roared the swollen torrent, 

And the Pass was wrapped in gloom, 
When the clansmen rose together 

From their lair amidst the broom. 
Then we belted on our tartans, 

And our bonnets down we drew, 10 

And we felt our broadswords' edges, 

And we proved them to be true; 
And we prayed the prayer of soldiers, 

Aoid we cried the gathering-cry, 
And we clasped the hands of kinsmen 

And we swore to do or die ! 
Then our leader rode before us 

On his war-horse black as night 
Well the Cameronian rebels 

Knew that charger in the fight! 20 

And a cry of exultation 

From the bearded warriors rose; 
For we loved the house of Claver'se, 

And we thought of good Montrose. 
Bat he raised his hand for silence 

" Soldiers ! I have sworn a vow ; 
Ere the evening-star shall glisten 

On Schehallion's lofty brow, 



142 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Either we shall rest in triumph, 

Or another of the Graemes 30 

Shall have died in battle-harness 

For his country and King James! 
Think upon the Royal Martyr 

Think of what his race endure 
Think on him whom butchers murder'd 

On the field of Magus Muir: 
By his sacred blood I charge ye 

By the ruin'd hearth and shrine 
By the blighted hopes of Scotland 

By your injuries and mine 40 

Strike this day as if the anvil 

Lay beneath your blows the while, 
Be they Covenanting traitors, 

Or the brood of false Argyle! 
Strike! and drive the trembling rebels 

Backwards o'er the stormy Forth; 
Let them tell their pale Convention 

How they fared within the North. 
Let them tell that Highland honour 

Is not to be bought nor sold 50 

That we scorn their Prince's anger, 

As we loathe his foreign gold. 
Strike! and when the fight is over, 

If ye look in vain for me, 
Where the dead are lying thickest, 

Search for him that was Dundee I " 

Loudly then the hills re-echoed 

With our answer to his call, 
But a deeper echo sounded 

In the bosoms of us all. 60 



THE BURIAL MARCH OF DUNDEE 148 

For the lands of wide Breadalbane 

Not a man who heard him speak 
Would that day have left the battle. 

Burning eye and flushing cheek 
Told the clansmen's fierce emotion, 

And they harder drew their breath; 
For their souls were strong within them, 

Stronger than the grasp of death. 
Soon we heard a challenge-trumpet 

Sounding in the Pass below, 70 

And the distant tramp of horses, 

And the voices of the foe : 
Down we crouched amid the bracken, 

Till the Lowland ranks drew near, 
Panting like the hounds in summer 

When they scent the stately deer. 
From the dark defile emerging, 

Next we saw the squadrons come, 
Leslie's foot and Leven's troopers 

Marching to the tuck of drum; 80 

Through the scattered wood of birches, 

O'er the broken ground and heath, 
Wound the long battalion slowly, 

Till they gained the field beneath; 
Then we bounded from our covert! 

Judge how looked the Saxons then, 
When they saw the rugged mountain 

Start to life with armed men ! 
Like a tempest down the ridges 

Swept the hurricane of steel 90 

Kose the slogan of Macdoiiald, 

Flashed the broadsword of Locheill! 
Vainly sped the withering volley 

'Mongst the foremost of our band; 



144 BALLADS AND POEMS 

On we poured, until we met them 

Foot to foot, and hand to hand! 
Horse and man went down like driftwood 

When the floods are black at Yule, 
And their carcasses are whirling 

In the Garry's deepest pool. 
Horse and man went down before us; 

Living foe there tarried none 
On the field of Killiecrankie, 

When that stubborn fight was done! 



And the evening-star was shining 

On Schehallion's distant head, 
When we wiped our bloody broadswords, 

And returned to count the dead. 
There we found him, gashed and gory 

Stretch'd upon the cumbered plain, 
As he told us where to seek him 

In the thickest of the slain. 
And a smile was on his visage, 

For within his dying ear 
Pealed the joyful note of triumph, 

And the clansmen's clamorous cheer: 
So, amidst the battle's thunder, 

Shot, and steel, and scorching flame, 
In the glory of his manhood 

Passed the spirit of the Grasme ! 



Open wide the vaults of Athol, 
Where the bones of heroes rest 

Open wide the hallowed portals 
To receive another guest! 



THE BURIAL MARCH OF DUNDEE 145 

Last of Scots and last of freemen 

Last of all that dauntless race 
Who would rather die unsullied 

Than outlive the land's disgrace 1 
Oh, thou lion-hearted warrior 1 

Reek not of the after-time: 13 

Honour may be deemed dishonour, 

Loyalty be called a crime. 
Sleep in peace with kindred ashes 

Of the noble and the true, 
Hands that never failed their country, 

Hearts that never baseness knew. 
Sleep! and till the latest trumpet 

Wakes the dead from earth and sea, 
Scotland shall not boast a braver 

Chieftain than our own Dundee! 140 

W. E. AYTOUN. 

ADMIRAL BENBOW. 
(1702) 

0, we sail'd to Virginia, and thence to Fayal, 
Where we water'd our shipping, and then we weigh'd 

all; 
Full in view on the seas, boys, seven sails we did 

espy; 
0, we manned our capstan, and weigh'd speedily. 

The first we came up with was a brigantine sloop, 
And we ask'd if the others were as big as they 

lookM; 

But turning to windward as near as we could lie. 
We found there were ten men-of-war cruising by. 

s. 10 



146 BALLADS AND POEMS 

O, we drew up our squadron in very nice line, 
And boldly we fought them for full four hours' 
time ; 10 

But the day being spent, boys, and night coming on, 
We let them alone till the very next morn. 

The very next morning the engagement proved hot, 
And brave Admiral Benbow received a chain-shot; 
And when he was wounded, to his men he did say, 
" Take me up in your arms, boys, and carry me away." 

0, the guns they did rattle, and the bullets did fly, 

But Admiral Benbow for help would not cry; 

" Take me down to the cock-pit, there is ease for my 

smarts, 
If my merry men see me, it will sure break their 

hearts." 20 

The very next morning, by break of the day, 
They hoisted their topsails, and so bore away; 
We bore to Port Royal, where the people flocked 

much 
To see Admiral Benbow carried to Kingston Church. 

Come, all you brave fellows, wherever you've been, 
Let us drink to the health of our king and our queen, 
And another good health to the girls that we know, 
And a third in remembrance of brave Admiral 
Benbow. 

Anon. 



AFTER BLENHEIM 147 

AFTER BLENHEIM. 
(1704) 

It was a summer evening, 

Old Kaspar's work was done, 
And lie before his cottage door 

Was sitting in the sun, 
And by him sported on the green 
His little grandchild Wilhelmine. 

She saw her brother Peterkin 

Roll something large and round, 
Which he beside the rivulet 

In playing there had found; 10 

He came to ask what he had found 
That was so large and smooth and round. 

Old Kaspar took it from the boy 

Who stood expectant by; 
And then the old man shook his head, 

And with a natural sigh 
[ "Tis some poor fellow's skull," said he, 
"Who fell in the great victory." 

"I find them in the garden, 

For there's many here about; 20 

And often when I go to plough 

The ploughshare turns them out. 
For many a thousand men," said he, 
"Were slain in that great victory." 

102 



148 BALLADS AND POEMS 

"Now tell us what 'twas all about," 

Young Peterkin he cries: 
And little Willielmine looks up 

With wonder- waiting eyes; 
" Now tell us all about the war, 
And what they fought each other for." 30 

"It was the English," Kaspar cried, 

"Who put the French to rout; 
But what they fought each other for 

I could not well make out. 
But every body said," quoth he, 
"That 'twas a famous victory. 

"My father lived at Blenheim then, 

Yon little stream hard by; 
They burnt his dwelling to the ground, 

And he was forced to fly: 40 

So with his wife and child he fled, 
Nor had he where to rest his head. 

"With fire and sword the country round 

Was wasted far and wide, 
And many a childing mother then 

And new-born baby died: 
But things like that, you know, must be 
At every famous victory. 

"They say it was a shocking sight 

After the field was won; 50 

For many thousand bodies here 
Lay rotting in the sun; 

But things like that, you know, must be 

After a famous victory. 



AFTER BLENHEIM 149 

"Great praise the Duke of Marlbro' won, 

And our good Prince Eugene." 
"Why, 'twas a very wicked thing!" 

Said little Wilhelmine. 
"Nay, nay, my little girl," quoth he, 
"It was a famous victory. 60 

"And every body praised the Duke 

Who this great fight did win." 
"But what good came of it at last?" 

Quoth little Peterkin. 
"Why that I cannot tell," said he, 
"But 'twas a famous victory." 

ROBERT SOUTHET. 



THE VICAR OF BRAY, 
(c. 1720) 

In good King Charles's golden days, 

When loyalty no harm meant, 
A zealous High-Churchman was I, 

And so I got preferment. 
To teach my flock I never miss'd 

Kings were by God appointed; 
And lost are those that dare resist 

Or touch the Lord's anointed. 

And this is law that I'll maintain 
Until my dying day, sir: 

That whatsoever king shall reign, 
I'll be the Vicar of Bray, sir. 



150 BALLADS AND POEMS 

When royal James possess'd the crown, 

And Popery grew in fashion, 
The penal laws I hooted down, 

And read the Declaration. 
The Church of Rome I found would fit 

Full well my constitution; 
And I had been a Jesuit, 

But for the Revolution. 

And this is law, etc. 



When William was our King declared 

To ease the nation's grievance, 
With this new wind about I steer'd 

And swore to him allegiance. 
Old principles I did revoke, 

Set conscience at a distance; 
Passive obedience was a joke, 

A jest was non-resistance. 

And this is law, etc. 



When royal Anne became our Queen, 

The Church of England's glory, 3 

Another face of things was seen, 

And I became a Tory, 
Occasional conformists base, 

I blamed' their moderation; 
And thought the Church in danger was 

By such prevarication. 

And this is law, etc. 



THE VICAR OF BRAY 151 

When George in pudding-time came o'er, 

And moderate men look'd big, sir, 
My principles I changed once more, 

And so became a Whig, sir. 40 

And thus preferment I procured 

From our new faith's defender; 
And almost every day abjured 

The Pope and the Pretender. 

And this is law, etc. 



Th' illustrious house of Hanover 

And Protestant succession, 
To them I do allegiance swear 

While they can keep possession; 
For in my faith and loyalty 

I never more will falter, 
And George my lawful king shall be 

Until the times do alter. 



5 



And this is law, etc. 



Anon. 



152 BALLADS AND POEMS 

A BALLAD OF THE BOSTON TEA-PARTY. 
(1773) 

No! never such a draught was poured 

Since Hebe served with nectar 
The bright Olympians and their Lord, 

Her over-kind protector, 
Since Father Noah squeezed the grape, 

And took to such behaving 
As would have shamed our grandsire ape 

Before the days of shaving; 
No! ne'er was mingled such a draught 

In palace, hall, or arbour, 
As freemen brewed and tyrants quaffed 

That night in Boston Harbour! 

It kept King George so long awake 

His brain at last got addled, 
It made the nerves of Britain shake, 

With sevenscore millions saddled: 
Before that bitter cup was drained, 

Amid the roar of cannon, 
The Western war-cloud's crimson stained 

The Thames, the Clyde, the Shannon; 
Full many a six-foot grenadier 

The flattened grass had measured, 
And many a mother many a year 

Her tearful memories treasured; 
Fast spread the tempest's darkening pall, 

The mighty realms were troubled, 
The storm broke loose but first of all 

The Boston tea-pot bubbled! 



A BALLAD OF THE BOSTON TEA-PARTY 153 

An evening party, only that, 

No formal invitation, 30 

No gold-laced coat, no stiff cravat, 

No feast in contemplation, 
No silk-robed dames, no fiddling band, 

No flowers, no songs, no dancing 
A tribe of Eed men, axe in hand, 

Behold the guests advancing! 

How fast the stragglers join the throng, 

From stall and workshop gathered! 
The lively barber skips along 

And leaves a chin half -lathered ; 40 

The smith has flung his hammer down, 

The horse-shoe still is glowing ; 
The truant tapster at the Crown 

Has left a beer-cask flowing; 
The cooper's boys have dropped the adze, 

And trot behind their master; 
Up run the tarry ship-yard lads, 

The crowd is hurrying faster. 
Out from the mill-pond's purlieus gush 

The streams of white-faced millers, 50 

And down their slippery alleys rush 

The lusty young Fort-Hillers ; 
The rope-walk lends its prentice crew, 

The tories seize the omen; 
"Ay, boys, you'll soon have work to do, 

For England's rebel foemen, 
King Hancock, Adams, and their gang, 

That fire the mob with treason, 
When these we shoot and those we hang, 

The town will come to reason." 60 



154 BALLADS AND POEMS 

On, on to where the tea-ships ride! 

And now their ranks are forming, 
A rush, and up the Dartmouth's side 

The Mohawk band is swarming! 
See the fierce natives! What a glimpse 

Of paint, and fur, and feather, 
As all at once the full-grown imps 

Light on the deck together! 
A scarf the pig-tail's secret keeps, 

A blanket hides the breeches, 7 

And out the cursed cargo leaps 

And overboard it pitches! 

A woman, at the evening board 

So gracious, sweet, and purring, 
So happy while the tea is poured, 

So blest while spoons are stirring, 
What martyr can compare with thee, 

The mother, wife, or daughter, 
That night, instead of best Bohea, 

Condemned to milk and water 1 80 

Ah, little dreams the quiet dame 

Who plies with rock and spindle 
The patient flax, how great a flame 

Yon little spark shall kindle! 
The lurid morning shall reveal 

A fire no king can smother, 
Where British flint and Boston steel 

Have dashed against each other! 
Old charters shrivel in its track, 

His worship's bench has crumbled, 9 

It climbs and clasps the union- jack, 

Its blazoned pomp is humbled; 



A BALLAD OF THE BOSTON TEA-PARTY 155 

The flags go down on land and sea, 

Like corn before the reapers; 
So burned the fire that brewed the tea, 

That Boston served her keepers I 

The waves that wrought a century's wreck 

Have rolled o'er Whig and Tory; 
The Mohawks on the Dartmouth's deck 

Still live in song and story; 100 

The waters in the rebel bay 

Have kept their tea-leaf savour; 
Our old North-enders in their spray 

Still taste a Hyson flavour; 
And freedom's tea-cup still o'erflows 

With ever-fresh libations, 
To cheat of slumber all her foes 

And cheer the wakening nations! 

0. W. HOLMES. 



THE LOSS OF THE ROYAL GEORGE. 
(1782) 

Toll for the brave, 

The brave that are no more! 
All sunk beneath the wave 

Fast by their native shore! 

Eight hundred of the brave, 
Whose courage well was tried, 

Had made the vessel heel, 
And laid her on her side. 



156 BALLADS AND POEMS 

A land breeze shook the shrouds, 

And she was overset; 10 

Down went the Royal George, 
With all her crew complete ! 

Toll for the brave! 

Brave Kempenfelt is gone, 
His last sea-fight is fought, 

His work of glory done. 

It was not in the battle; 

No tempest gave the shock; 
She sprang no fatal leak; 

She ran upon no rock. 20 

His sword was in its sheath, 

His fingers held the pen, 
When Kempenfelt went down 

With twice four hundred men. 

Weigh the vessel up, 

Once dreaded by our foes! 
And mingle with our cup 

The tears that England owes. 

Her timbers yet are sound, 

And she may float again, 30 

Full charged with England's thunder, 

And plough the distant main. 

But Kempenfelt is gone, 

His victories are o'er; 
And he and his eight hundred 

Shall plough the wave no more. 

WILLIAM COWPER. 



THE BATTLE OF THE BALTIC 157 

THE BATTLE OF THE BALTIC. 
(1801) 

Of Nelson and the North 

Sing the glorious day's renown, 

When to battle fierce came forth 

All the might of Denmark's crown, 

And her arms along the deep proudly shone, 

By each gun the lighted brand, 

In a bold determined hand, 

And the Prince of all the land 

Led them on. 

Like leviathans afloat 10 

Lay their bulwarks on the brine; 

While the sign of battle flew 

On the lofty British line: 

It was ten of April morn by the chime: 

As they drifted on their path 

There was silence deep as death; 

And the boldest held his breath 

For a time. 

But the might of England flushed 

To anticipate the scene; 20 

And her van the fleeter rushed 

O'er the deadly space between. 

" Hearts of oak ! " our captains cried, when each gun 

From its adamantine lips 

Spread a death-shade round the ships, 

Like the hurricane eclipse 

Of the sun. 



168 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Again ! again ! again ! 

And the havoc did not slack, 

Till a feeble cheer the Dane 3 

To our cheering sent us back; 

Their shots along the deep slowly boom: 

Then ceased and all is wail, 

As they strike the shattered sail; 

Or in conflagration pale 

Light the gloom. 

Out spoke the victor then 

As he hailed them o'er the wave, 

"Ye are brothers! ye are men! 

And we conquer but to save: 40 

So peace instead of death let us bring; 

But yield, proud foe, thy fleet 

With the crews, at England's feet, 

And make submission meet 

To our King." 

Then Denmark blessed our chief 

That he gave her wounds repose; 

And the sounds of joy and grief 

From her people wildly rose, 

As death withdrew his shades from the day: 50 

While the sun looked smiling bright 

O'er a wide and woeful sight, 

Where the fires of funeral light 

Died away. 

Now joy, Old England, raise 
For the tidings of thy might, 
By the festal cities' blaze, 
Whilst the wine-cup shines in light; 



THE BATTLE OF THE BALTIC 159 

And yet amidst that joy and uproar, 

Let us think of them that sleep 60 

Full many a fathom deep 

By thy wild and stormy steep, 

Elsinore ! 

Brave hearts! to Britain's pride 

Once so faithful and so true, 

On the deck of fame that died 

With the gallant good Riou; 

Soft sigh the winds of Heaven o'er their grave! 

While the billow mournful rolls 

And the mermaid's song condoles, 70 

Singing glory to the souls 

Of the brave! 

THOMAS CAMPBELL. 



CHARACTER OF THE HAPPY WARRIOR. 
(Nelson died 21 October, 1805) 

Who is the happy Warrior? Who is he 
Whom every man in arms should wish to be ? 
It is the generous spirit, who, when brought 
Among the tasks of real life, hath wrought 
Upon the plan that pleased his childish thought: 
Whose high endeavours are an inward light 
That make the path before him always bright; 
Who, with a natural instinct to discern 
What knowledge can perform, is diligent to learn; 
Abides by this resolve, and stops not there, i 

But makes his moral being his prime care; 



160 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Who, doom'd to go in company with Pain, 

And Fear, and Bloodshed, miserable train! 

Turns his necessity to glorious gain; 

In face of these doth exercise a power 

Which is our human nature's highest dower; 

Controls them and subdues, transmutes, bereaves 

Of their bad influence, and their good receives; 

By objects, which might force the soul to abate 

Her feeling, render'd more compassionate; 20 

Is placable because occasions rise 

So often that demand such sacrifice; 

More skilful in self-knowledge, even more pure, 

As tempted more; more able to endure 

As more exposed to suffering and distress; 

Thence, also, more alive to tenderness. 

'Tis he whose law is reason; who depends 

Upon that law as on the best of friends! 

Whence, in a state where men are tempted still 

To evil for a guard against worse ill, 30 

And what in quality or act is best 

Doth seldom on a right foundation rest, 

He fixes good on good alone, and owes 

To virtue every triumph that he knows: 

Who, if he rise to station of command, 

Rises by open means; and there will stand 

On honourable terms, or else retire, 

And in himself possess his own desire; 

Who comprehends his trust, and to the same 

Keeps faithful with a singleness of aim; 40 

And therefore does not stoop, nor lie in wait 

For wealth, or honours, or for worldly state: 

Whom they must follow; on whose head must fall, 

Like showers of manna, if they come at all: 



THE HAPPY WARKIOB 161 

Whose powers shed round him in the common strife, 

Or mild concerns of ordinary life, 

A constant influence, a peculiar grace; 

But who, if he be call'd upon to face 

Some awful moment to which Heaven has join'd 

Great issues, good or bad for human kind, 50 

Is happy as a lover; and attired 

With sudden brightness, like a man inspired: 

And through the heat of conflict keeps the law 

In calmness made, and sees what he foresaw; 

Or if "an unexpected call succeed, 

Come when it will, is equal to the need: 

He who, though thus endued as with a sense 

And faculty for storm and turbulence, 

Is yet a soul whose master bias leans 

To homefelt pleasures and to gentle scenes: 60 

Sweet images ! which, wheresoe'er he be, 

Are at his heart: and such fidelity 

It is his darling passion to approve: 

More brave for this, that he hath much to love: 

J Tis, finally, the man, who, lifted high, 

Conspicuous object in a nation's eye, 

Or left unthought of in obscurity, 

Who, with a toward or untoward lot, 

Prosperous or adverse, to his wish or not, 

Plays, in the many games of life, that one, 70 

Where what he most doth value must be won; 

Whom neither shape of danger can dismay, 

Nor thought of tender happiness betray; 

Who, not content that former worth stand fast, 

Looks forward, persevering to the last, 

From well to better, daily self -surpassed : 

s. 11 



162 



BALLADS AND POEMS 



Who, whether praise of him must walk the earth 
For ever, and to noble deeds give birth, 
Or he must go to dust without his fame, 
And leave a dead, unprofitable name, 
Finds comfort in himself and in his ca-use; 
And, while the mortal mist is gathering, draws 
His breath in confidence of Heaven's applause: 
This is the happy warrior; this is he 
Whom every man in arms should wish to be. 

WILLIAM WORDSWORTH. 



So 



YE MARINERS OF ENGLAND. 
(1807) 

Ye Mariners of England 

That guard our native seas! 
Whose flag has braved a thousand years 

The battle and the breeze! 
Your glorious standard launch again 

To match another foe; 
And sweep through the deep, 

While the stormy winds do blow ! 
While the battle rages loud and long, 

And the stormy winds do blow. 

The spirits of your fathers 
Shall start from every wave 

For the deck it was their field of fame, 
And Ocean was their grave: 



YE MARINERS OF ENGLAND 163 

Where Blake and mighty Nelson fell 

Your manly hearts shall glow, 
As ye sweep through the deep, 

While the stormy winds do blow ! 
While the battle rages loud and long, 

And the stormy winds do blow. 20 

Britannia needs no bulwarks, 

No towers along the steep; 
Her march is o'er the mountain-waves, 

Her home is on the deep. 
With thunders from her native oak 

She quells the floods below, 
As they roar on the shore, 

When the stormy winds do blow! 
When the battle rages loud and long, 

And the stormy winds do blow. 30 

The meteor flag of England 

Shall yet terrific burn; 
Till danger's troubled night depart 

And the star of peace return. 
Then, then, ye ocean- warriors ! 

Our song and feast shall flow 
To the fame of your name, 

When the storm has ceased to blow ! 
When the fiery fight is heard no more, 

And the storm has ceased to blow. 40 

THOMAS CAMPBELL. 



112 



164 BALLADS AND POEMS 



(1809) 

Not a drum was heard, not a funeral note, 
As his corse to the rampart we hurried; 

Not a soldier discharged his farewell shot 
O'er the grave where our hero we buried. 

We buried him darkly, at dead of night, 

The sods with our bayonets turning; 
By the struggling moonbeam's misty light 

And the lanthorn dimly burning. 

No useless coffin enclosed his breast, 

Not in sheet or in shroud we wound him; 10 

But he lay like a warrior taking his rest, 

With his martial cloak around him. 

Few and short were the prayers we said, 
And we spoke not a word of sorrow; 

But we steadfastly gazed on the face that was dead, 
And we bitterly thought of the morrow. 

We thought, as we hollowed his narrow bed, 
And smoothed down his lonely pillow, 

That the foe and the stranger would tread o'er his head, 
And we far away on the billow ! 20 

Lightly they'll talk of the spirit that's gone, 
And o'er his cold ashes upbraid him, 

But little he'll reck, if they let him sleep on 
In the grave where a Briton has laid him. 



THE BURIAL OF SIR JOHN MOORE AT CORUNNA 165 

But half of our heavy task was done 

When the clock struck the note for retiring: 

And we heard the distant and random gun 
That the foe was sullenly firing. 

Slowly and sadly we laid him down, 

From the field of his fame fresh and gory; 30 

We carved not a line, and we raised not a stone, 

But we left him alone with his glory. 

CHAKLES WOLFE. 

WATERLOO. 

(from "Childe Harold.") 

(1815) 

There was a sound of revelry by night, 
And Belgium's Capital had gathered then 
Her Beauty and her Chivalry and bright 
The lamps shone o'er fair women and brave men; 
A thousand hearts beat happily; and when 
Music arose with its voluptuous swell, 
Soft eyes looked love to eyes which spake again, 
And all went merry as a marriage-bell; 
But hush! hark! a deep sound strikes like a rising knell ! 

Did ye not hear it? No 'twas but the wind, 10 
Or the car rattling o'er the stony street; 
On with the dance! let joy be unconfined; 
No sleep till morn, when Youth and Pleasure meet 
To chase the glowing Hours with flying feet 
But hark! that heavy sound breaks in once more, 
As if the clouds its echo would repeat; 
And nearer clearer deadlier than before ! 
Arm! Arm! it is it is the cannon's opening roar! 



166 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Within a windowed niche of that high hall 
Sate Brunswick's fated chieftain; he did hear 20 
That sound the first amidst the festival, 
And caught its tone with Death's prophetic ear; 
And when they smiled because he deemed it near, 
His heart more truly knew that peal too well 
Which stretched his father on a bloody bier, 
And roused the vengeance blood alone could quell: 
He rushed into the field, and, foremost fighting, fell. 



Ah! then and there was hurrying to and fro 
And gathering tears, and tremblings of distress, 
And cheeks all pale, which but an hour ago 30 
Blushed at the praise of their own loveliness 
And there were sudden partings, such as press 
The life from out young hearts, and choking sighs 
Which ne'er might be repeated; who could guess 
If ever more should meet those mutual eyes, 
Since upon night so sweet such awful morn could rise ! 



And there was mounting in hot haste the steed, 
The mustering squadron, and the clattering car, 
Went pouring forward with impetuous speed, 
And swiftly forming in the ranks of war 40 

And the deep thunder peal on peal afar; 
And near, the beat of the alarming drum 
Roused up the soldier ere the Morning Star; 
While thronged the citizens with terror dumb, 
Or whispering, with white lips "The foe ! They come ! 
they come ! " 



WATERLOO 167 

And wild and high the " Cameron's Gathering " rose ! 
The war-note of Lochiel, which Albyn's hills 
Have heard, and heard, too, have her Saxon foes : 
How in the noon of night that pibroch thrills, 
Savage and shrill ! But with the breath which fills 50 
Their mountain-pipe, so fill the mountaineers 
With the fierce native daring which instils 
The stirring memory of a thousand years, 
And Evan's Donald's fame rings in each clansman's 
earsl 

And Ardennes waves above them her green leaves, 
Dewy with Nature's tear-drops, as they pass 
Grieving, if aught inanimate e'er grieves, 
Over the unreturning brave, alas! 
Ere evening to be trodden like the grass 
Which now beneath them, but above shall grow 60 
In its next verdure, when this fiery mass 
Of living Yalour, rolling on the foe, 
And burning with high Hope, shall moulder cold and 
low. 

Last noon beheld them full of lusty life ; 
Last eve in Beauty's circle proudly gay; 
The Midnight brought the signal-sound of strife, 
The Morn the marshalling in arms, the Day 
Battle's magnificently-stern array! 
The thunder-clouds close o'er it, which when rent 
The earth is covered thick with other clay, 70 
Which her own clay shall cover, heaped and pent, 
Rider and horse, friend, foe, in one red burial 
blent 1 



168 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Their praise is hymned by loftier hearts than mine ; 
Yet one I would select from that proud throng, 
Partly because they blend me with his line, 
And partly that I did his Sire some wrong, 
And partly that bright names will hallow song; 
And his was of the bravest, and when showered 
The death-bolts deadliest the thinned files along, 
Even where the thickest of "War's tempest lowered, 80 
They reached no nobler breast than thine, young, 
gallant Howard ! 



There have been tears and breaking hearts for thee, 
And mine were nothing, had I such to give; 
But when I stood beneath the fresh green tree, 
Which living waves where thou didst cease to live, 
And saw around me the wide field revive 
With fruits and fertile promise, and the Spring 
Come forth her work of gladness to contrive, 
With all her reckless birds upon the wing, 
I turn'd from all she brought to those she could not 
bring. 90 

LOED BYBON. 



ENGLAND'S DEAD 169 



ENGLAND'S DEAD. 

Son of the Ocean Isle! 

Where sleep your mighty dead? 
Show me what high and stately pile 

Is reared o'er Glory's bed. 

Go, stranger! track the deep 

Free, free the white sail spread 1 
Wave may not foam, nor wild wind sweep, 

Where rest not England's dead. 

On Egypt's burning plains, 

By the pyramid o'erswayed, 10 

With fearful power the noonday rQJgns, 

And the palm-trees yield no shade; 

But let the angry sun 

From heaven look fiercely red, 
Unfelt by those whose task is done! 

There slumber England's dead. 

The hurricane hath might 

Along the Indian shore, 
And far by Ganges' banks at night 

Is heard the tiger's roar; 20 

But let the sound roll on! 

It hath no tone of dread 
For those that from their toils are gone, 

There slumber England's dead. 



170 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Loud rush the torrent-floods 

The Western wilds among, 
And free, in green Columbia's woods, 

The hunter's bow is strung; 

But let the floods rush on! 

Let the arrow's flight be sped! 30 

Why should they reck whose task is done? 

There slumber England's dead. 

The mountain-storms rise high 

In the snowy Pyrenees, 
And toss the pine-boughs through the sky 

Like rose-leaves on the breeze; 

But let the storm rage on! 

Let the fresh wreaths be shed! 
For the Roncesvalles' field is won, 

There slumber England's dead. 40 

On the frozen deep's repose 

'Tis a dark and dreadful hour, 
When round the ship the ice-fields close, 

And the northern night-clouds lour; 

But let the ice drift on! 

Let the cold-blue desert spread! 
Their course with mast and flag is done, 

Even there sleep England's dead. 

The warlike of the isles, 

The men of field and wave! 50 

Are not the rocks their funeral piles, 

The seas and shores their grave? 



ENGLAND'S DEAD 171 

Go, stranger! track the deep 

Free, free the white sail spread 
Wave may not foam, nor wild wind sweep 

Where rest not England's dead. 

MRS. HEMANS. 



VICTOKIA'S TEAKS. 
(1837) 

" maiden ! heir of kings ! 

A king has left his place! 
The majesty of death has swept 

All other from his face! 
And thou upon thy mother's breast 

No longer lean adown, 
But take the glory for the rest, 
And rule the land that loves thee best ! " 
She heard, and wept 

She wept, to wear a crown! 10 

They decked her courtly halls; 

They reined her hundred steeds; 
They shouted at her palace gate, 

"A noble Queen succeeds!" 
Her name has stirred the mountain's sleep, 

Her praise has filled the town! 
And mourners God had stricken deep, 
Looked hearkening up, and did not weep. 
Alone she wept, 

Who wept, to wear a crown! 20 



172 BALLADS AND POEMS 

She saw no purples shine, 

For tears had dimmed her eyes; 
She only knew her childhood's Howers 

Were happier pageantries! 
And while her heralds played the part, 

For million shouts to drown 
"God save the Queen" from hill to mart, 
She heard through all her beating heart, 
And turned and wept 

She wept, to wear a crown! 30 

God save thee, weeping Queen! 

Thou shalt be well beloved! 
The tyrant's sceptre cannot move 

As those pure tears have moved ! 
The nature in thine eyes we see, 

That tyrants cannot own, 
The love that guardeth liberties! 
Strange blessing on the nation lies, 
Whose sovereign wept 

Yea! wept, to wear its crown! 4 

G-od bless thee, weeping Queen, 

With blessing more divine! 
And fill with happier love than earth's 

That tender heart of thine ! 
That when the thrones of earth shall be 

As low as graves brought down, 
A pierced hand may give to thee 
The crown which angels shout to seel 
Thou wilt not weep, 

To wear that heavenly crown! 50 

MRS. BROWNING. 






ODE ON THE DEATH OF THE DUKE OF WELLINGTON 173 



ODE ON THE DEATH OF THE DUKE 
OF WELLINGTON. 

(1852) 

I. 

Bury the Great Duke 

With an empire's lamentation, 

Let us bury the Great Duke 

To the noise of the mourning of a mighty nation, 
Mourning when their leaders fall, 
Warriors carry the warrior's pall, 
And sorrow darkens hamlet and hall. 



II. 

Where shall we lay the man whom we deplore ? 

Here, in streaming London's central roar. 

Let the sound of those he wrought for, 10 

And the feet of those he fought for, 

Echo round his bones for evermore. 



III. 

Lead out the pageant: sad and slow, 

As fits an universal woe, 

Let the long long procession go, 

And let the sorrowing crowd about it grow, 

And let the mournful martial music blow; 

The last great Englishman is low. 



174 BALLADS AND POEMS 

IV. 

Mourn, for to us he seems the last, 

Remembering all his greatness in the Past. 20 

No more in soldier fashion will he greet 

With lifted hand the gazer in the street. 

friends, our chief state-oracle is mute: 

Mourn for the man of long-enduring blood, 

The statesman-warrior, moderate, resolute, 

Whole in himself, a common good. 

Mourn for the man of amplest influence, 

Yet clearest of ambitious crime, 

Our greatest yet with least pretence, 

Great in council and great in war, 30 

Foremost captain of his time, 

Rich in saving common-sense, 

And, as the greatest only are, 

In his simplicity sublime. 

good gray head which all men knew, 

voice from which their omens all men drew, 

O iron nerve to true occasion true, 

fall'n at length that tower of strength 

Which stood four-square to all the winds that blew! 

Such was he whom we deplore. 40 

The long self-sacrifice of life is o'er. 

The great World-victor's victor will be seen no more. 

V. 

All is over and done: 
Render thanks to the Giver, 
England, for thy son. 
Let the bell be toll'd. 
Render thanks to the Giver, 
And render him to the mould. 



ODE ON THE DEATH OF THE DUKE OF WELLINGTON 175 

Under the cross of gold 

That shines over city and river, 5 

There he shall rest for ever 

Among the wise and the bold. 

Let the bell be toll'd : 

And a reverent people behold 

The towering car, the sable steeds: 

Bright let it be with its blazon' d deeds, 

Dark in its funeral fold. 

Let the bell be toll'd : 

And a deeper knell in the heart be knoll' d; 

And the sound of the sorrowing anthem roll'd 60 

Thro' the dome of the golden cross; 

And the volleying cannon thunder his loss; 

He knew their voices of old. 

For many a time in many a clime 

His captain's ear has heard them boom 

Bellowing victory, bellowing doom: 

When he with those deep voices wrought, 

Guarding realms and kings from shame; 

With those deep voices our dead captain taught 

The tyrant, and asserts his claim 70 

In that dread sound to the great name, 

Which he has worn so pure of blame, 

In praise and in dispraise the same, 

A man of well-attemper'd frame. 

O civic muse, to such a name, 

To such a name for ages long, 

To such a name, 

Preserve a broad approach of fame, 

And ever-echoing avenues of song. 



176 BALLADS AND POEMS 



VI. 

"Who is he that cometh, like an honour'd guest, 80 
With banner and with music, with soldier and with 

priest, 

With a nation weeping, and breaking on my rest?" 
Mighty Seaman, this is he 
Was great by land as thou by sea.' 
Thine island loves thee well, thou famous man, 
The greatest sailor since our world began. 
Now, to the roll of muffled drums, 
To thee the greatest soldier comes; 
For this is he 

Was great by land as thou by sea; 90 

His foes were thine; he kept us free; 
O give him welcome, this is he 
Worthy of our gorgeous rites, 
And worthy to be laid by thee; 
For this is England's greatest son, 
He that gain'd a hundred fights, 
Nor ever lost an English gun; 
This is he that far away 
Against the myriads of Assaye 

Clash'd with his fiery few and won; 100 

And underneath another sun, 
Warring on a later day, 
Bound affrighted Lisbon drew 
The treble works, the vast designs 
Of his laboured rampart-lines, 
Where he greatly stood at bay, 
Whence he issued forth anew, 
And ever great and greater grew, 



ODE ON THE DEATH OF THE DUKE OF WELLINGTON 177 

Beating from the wasted vines 

Back to France her banded swarms, no 

Back to France with countless blows, 
Till o'er the hills her eagles flew 
Beyond the Pyrenean pines, 
Follow'd up in valley and glen 
With blare of bugle, clamour of men, 
Roll of cannon and clash of arms, 
And England pouring on her foes. 
Such a war had such a close. 
Again their ravening eagle rose 

In anger, wheel'd on Europe-shadowing wings, 120 
And barking for the thrones of kings; 
Till one that sought but Duty's iron crown 
On that loud sabbath shook the spoiler down; 
A day of onsets of despair! 
Dash'd on every rocky square 
Their surging charges foam'd themselves away; 
Last, the Prussian trumpet blew; 
Thro' the long-tormented air 
Heaven flash'd a sudden jubilant ray, 
And down we swept and charged and overthrew. 13 
So great a soldier taught us there, 
What long-enduring hearts could do 
In that world-earthquake, Waterloo! 
Mighty Seaman, tender and true, 
And pure as he from taint of craven guile, 
O saviour of the silver-coasted isle, 
shaker of the Baltic and the Nile, 
If aught of things that here befall 
Touch a spirit among things divine, 
If love of country move thee there at all, 140 

Be glad, because his bones are laid by thine! 
s. 12 



178 BALLADS AND POEMS 

And thro' the centuries let a people's voice 

In full acclaim, 

A people's voice, 

The proof and echo of all human fame, 

A people's voice, when they rejoice 

At civic revel and pomp and game, 

Attest their great commander's claim 

With honour, honour, honour, honour to him, 

Eternal honour to his name. 150 

VH. 

A people's voice! we are a people yet. 

Tho' all men else their nobler dreams forget, 

Confused by brainless mobs and lawless Powers; 

Thank Him who isled us here, and roughly set 

His Briton in blown seas and storming showers, 

We have a voice, with which to pay the debt 

Of boundless love and reverence and regret 

To those great men who fought, and kept it ours. 

And keep it ours, God, from brute control; 

Statesmen, guard us, guard the eye, the soul 160 

Of Europe, keep our noble England whole, 

And save the one true seed of freedom sown 

Betwixt a people and their ancient throne, 

That sober freedom out of which there springs 

Our loyal passion for our temperate kings; 

For, saving that, ye help to save mankind 

Till public wrong be crumbled into dust, 

And drill the raw world for the march of mind, 

Till crowds at length be sane and crowns be just. 

But wink no more in slothful overtrust. 170 

Remember him who led your hosts; 

He bad you guard the sacred coasts. 



ODE ON THE DEATH OF THE DUKE OF WELLINGTON 179 

Your cannons moulder on the seaward wall; 

His voice is silent in your council-hall 

For ever; and whatever tempests lour 

For ever silent; even if they broke 

In thunder, silent: yet remember all 

He spoke among you, and the Man who spoke; 

Who never sold the truth to serve the hour, 

Nor palter'd with Eternal God for power; 180 

Who let the turbid streams of rumour flow 

Thro' either babbling world of high and low; 

Whose life was work, whose language rife 

With rugged maxims hewn from life; 

Who never spoke against a foe; 

Whose eighty winters freeze with one rebuke 

All great self-seekers trampling on the right: 

Truth-teller was our England's Alfred named; 

Truth-lover was our English Duke; 

Whatever record leap to light 190 

He never shall be shamed. 



VIII. 

Lo, the leader in these glorious wars 

Now to glorious burial slowly borne, 

Followed by the brave of other lands, 

He, on whom from both her open hands 

Lavish Honour shower'd all her stars, 

And affluent Fortune emptied all her horn. 

Yea, let all good things await 

Him who cares not to be great, 

But as he saves or serves the state. 200 

Not once or twice in our rough island-story, 

The path of duty was the way to glory: 

122 



180 BALLADS AND POEMS 

He that walks it, only thirsting 

For the right, and learns to deaden 

Love of self, before his journey closes, 

He shall find the stubborn thistle bursting 

Into glossy purples, which outredden 

All voluptuous garden-roses. 

Not once or twice in our fair island-story, 

The path of duty was the way to glory: 210 

He, that ever following her commands, 

On with toil of heart and knees and hands, 

Thro' the long gorge to the far light has won 

His path upward, and prevail'd, 

Shall find the toppling crags of Duty scaled 

Are close upon the shining table-lands 

To which our God Himself is moon and sun. 

Such was he: his work is done. 

But while the races of mankind endure, 

Let his great example stand 220 

Colossal, seen of every land, 

And keep the soldier firm, the statesman pure: 

Till in all lands and thro' all human story 

The path of duty be the way to glory: 

And let the land whose hearths he saved from shame 

For many and many an age proclaim 

At civic revel and pomp and game, 

And when the long-illumined cities flame, 

Their ever-loyal iron leader's fame, 

With honour, honour, honour, honour to him, 230 

Eternal honour to his name. 

IX. 

Peace, his triumph will be sung 
By some yet unmoulded tongue 



ODE ON THE DEATH OP THE DUKE OF WELLINGTON 181 

Par on in summers that we shall not see : 

Peace, it is a day of pain 

For one about whose patriarchal knee 

Late the little children clung: 

O peace, it is a day of pain 

For one, upon whose hand and heart and brain 

Once the weight and fate of Europe hung. 240 

Ours the pain, be his the gainl 

More than is of man's degree 

Must be with us, watching here 

At this, our great solemnity. 

Whom we see not we revere; 

We revere, and we refrain 

From talk of battles loud and vain, 

And brawling memories all too free 

For such a wise humility 

As befits a solemn fane: 250 

We revere, and while we hear 

The tides of Music's golden sea 

Setting toward eternity, 

Uplifted high in heart and hope are we, 

Until we doubt not that for one so true 

There must be other nobler work to do 

Than when he fought at Waterloo, 

And Victor he must ever be. 

For tho' the Giant Ages heave the hill 

And break the shore, and evermore 260 

Make and break, and work their will; 

Tho' world on world in myriad myriads roll 

Round us, each with different powers, 

And other forms of life than ours, 

What know we greater than the soul? 



182 BALLADS AND POEMS 

On God and Godlike men we build our trust. 

Hush, the Dead March wails in the people's ears: 

The dark crowd moves, and there are sobs and tears : 

The black earth yawns: the mortal disappears; 

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust; 270 

He is gone who seem'd so great. 

Gone; but nothing can bereave him 

Of the force he made his own 

Being here, and we believe him 

Something far advanced in State, 

And that he wears a truer crown 

Than any wreath that man can weave him. 

Speak no more of his renown, 

Lay your earthly fancies down, 

And in the vast cathedral leave him, 280 

God accept him, Christ receive him. 

LORD TENNYSON. 



THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE. 

(1854) 

I. 

Half a league, half a league, 

Half a league onward, 
All in the valley of Death 

Rode the six hundred. 
"Forward, the Light Brigade! 
Charge for the guns!" he said: 
Into the valley of Death 

Rode the six hundred. 



THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE 183 

n. 

"Forward, the Light Brigade!" 

Was there a man dismay'd ? 10 

Not though the soldier knew 

Some one had blunder'd : 
Theirs not to make reply, 
Theirs not to reason why, 
Theirs but to do and die, 
Into the valley of Death 

Rode the six hundred. 



III. 

Cannon to right of them, 

Cannon to left of them, 

Cannon in front of them 20 

Volley'd and thunder'd; 
Storm' d at with shot and shell, 
Boldly they rode and well, 
Into the jaws of Death, 
Into the mouth of Hell 

Rode the six hundred. 



IV. 

Flash'd all their sabres bare, 

Flash'd as they turn'd in air, 

Sabring the gunners there, 

Charging an army, while 30 

All the world wonder'd: 
Plunged in the battery-smoke, 
Right through the line they broke; 



184 BALLADS AND POEMS 

Cossack and Russian 
Reel'd from the sabre-stroke 

Shatter'd and sunder'd. 
Then they rode back but not, 

Not the six hundred. 



V. 

Cannon to right of them, 

Cannon to left of them, 40 

Cannon behind them 

Volleyed and thunder'd; 
Storm' d at with shot and shell, 
While horse and hero fell, 
They that had fought so well 
Came through the jaws of Death, 
Back from the mouth of Hell, 
All that was left of them, 

Left of six hundred. 

VI. 

When can their glory fade? 50 

Oh the wild charge they made ! 

All the world wonder'd. 
Honour the charge they made! 
Honour the Light Brigade, 

Noble six hundred ! 

LORD TENNYSON. 



NOTES. 



BOADICEA. 

Boadicea was queen of the British trihe of the Iceni. In 61, 
angered by the treatment to which she was subjected by the Eomans, 
she headed a revolt against them. Being defeated, she died, either 
in battle, or of grief, or by her own hand, according to various 
accounts. 

6. Druid, the ancient British priest. 

20. Gaul : it was the Goths who overthrew the Eoman Empire. 

31. eagles : the Eoman standard. 

38, 40. them refers to ' the bard's prophetic words,' 1. 33. 

William Cowper (17311800) stands in English poetry in a 
position midway between the artificial school of Pope and the 
' return to nature ' of which Wordsworth is the type. 



KING CANUTE. 

On the death of Ethelred in 1016, Canute became king of 
Northumbria and Mercia, and when Edmund, king of East England 
and Wessex, died later in the year, Canute was left sole king. The 
incident recorded in the poem is traditional. 

5. silversticks and goldsticks : courtiers of a much later date ; it 
is an humorous anachronism. 

11. gleemen : minstrels. 

55. the Jewish captain : Joshua. See Joshua, x. 13. 

William Makepeace Thackeray (1811 1863) was mainly a novelist 
and satirical writer, and only an occasional poet. This poem is a 
mock-antiqu' containing more than one anachronism. It is supposed 
to be sung by the knight of Ivanhoe in Thackeray's burlesque Eebecca 
and Rowena, a comic continuation and parody of Sir Walter Scott's 
novel. 



186 BALLADS AND POEMS 



HE NEVER SMILED AGAIN. 

1. The bark was called the White Ship, and the prince was 
William, the only son of Henry L The ship sank on 25 November, 
1120, and tradition records that Henry never smiled afterwards. 
D. G. Eossetti (18281882) wrote a fine ballad The White Ship on 
the same episode. 

19. The tourney: tournaments or jousts were the sport of knights. 

Felicia Dorothea Hemans (1793 1835) during a comparatively 
short life wrote a great deal of fluent verse of a sentimental kind. 
Her best -known poem is Gaaabianca. 



KING JOHN AND THE ABBOT OF CANTERBURY. 

This is a traditional ballad, supposed to be of Oriental origin and 
a fragment of Coptic folk-lore. A popular story such as this is 
necessarily of wide vogue, and versions of it appear in Germany in 
the thirteenth century and in Italy in the fifteenth. It must be 
understood that when the story came to England, it was fastened 
upon King John, and does not in fact record an historical incident 
of that monarch. 

19. dere : an obsolete word meaning ' harm.' 

25. stead : position, circumstances. 

62. learn : this used to mean ' teach,' but now it is only used so 
vulgarly. 

71. crozler, an abbot's staff: mitre, rochet, and cope, parts of 
his dress. A rochet is a close-fitting surplice. 

85. St. Bittel, an imaginary saint. 

10,5. nobles, gold coins worth 6*. 8d. 

LAMENT FOR SIMON DE MONTFORT. 

Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, was slain at the Battle of 
Evesham in Worcestershire, 4 August, 1265. 

13. The battle was fought on a Tuesday. 

31. Sir Hugh le Dispenser, justice of England, killed in the 
battle. 

35. Henry, son of Simon de Montfort. 






NOTES 187 

The English poem was translated by George Ellis (1753 1815), 
a satirical verse-writer and contributor to the Anti-Jacobin, from an 
early poem in French, evidently written by one of Simon de Mont- 
fort's adherents. 



ROBIN HOOD AND THE THREE SQUIRES. 

Eobin Hood is not historical, but a popular hero created by 
ballads. No reference to him is known earlier than the end of the 
fourteenth century, but he was doubtless a popular character before 
that date. The best ballads of Eobin Hood belong to the fifteenth 
century ; but the present one is obviously of later workmanship, 
compiled in the seventeenth century by some hack-writer. None the 
less, it is typical of the courteous and free outlaw, who throughout is 
representative of the yeoman as opposed to the higher orders, spiritual 
and temporal, upon whom he levies toll. Traditionally, he is associated 
with Nottingham, as in this ballad, and with Barasdale in the West 
Biding of Yorkshire, between Barnsley, Doncaster, Wakefield, and 
Pontefract. 

19. palmer, pilgrim. 

52. list, desire, wish. 

62. Probably a corruption of 'May Heaven you save and see,' 
see being an old word meaning 'protect.' 

96. shining, a corruption of some word equivalent to ' hastening '; 
perhaps 'skimming. 1 

101. slack, a pass between two hills. 

BOLD ROBIN. 

The poem illustrates Kobin Hood's traditional method of dealing 
with the friars. 

1. ghostly, spiritual, priestly. 

35. angels, gold coins of value varying between a third and a 
half of a pound. 

Thomas Love Peacock (17851866), a friend of Shelley, was 
a novelist, satirist, and poet, whose novels undoubtedly influenced 
Thackeray. Bold Eobin comes in the novel Maid Marian, and is one 
of the best of Peacock's songs, most of which attain a very high 
standard. 



188 BALLADS AND POEMS 



DURHAM FIELD. 

This battle was fought on October 17, 1346, but the ballad was 
not written till at least 130 years later, and some of the minstrel's 
statements are not in accordance with any of the accounts of the 
battle. Edward III being in France at the siege of Calais, David 
Bruce, the young king of Scotland, took the opportunity to invade 
England, and was met at Durham by an English force in three 
divisions, one (says the English chronicle) under the Earl of Angus, 
Henry Percy, Ralph Neville, and Henry Scrope, the second under the 
Archbishop of York, and the third under Mowbray, Bokeby, and John 
of Copland. The Scots' three divisions, according to the Scottish 
chronicle, were led (i) by King David Bruce, (ii) the Earl of Murray 
and William Douglas, and (iii) the Steward of Scotland and the Earl 
of March. 

2. spell, while. 

8. busked, prepared themselves : boun, ready. The whole phrase 
constantly occurs in ballads. See 1. 102, 150. 

12. stound, time. 

23. leeve, dear, pleasant : a common epithet of London. 

32. bearen : an old plural form ; cf. 11. 128, 192, 193. 

37. Hard hansel, bad omen. 

40. For, for fear of. 

41. Anguish = Angus. The minstrel absurdly puts him with the 
Scots. 

49. Vaughan is probably Buchan. 
55. vanward, vanguard, front of battle. 
65. Neville was also on the English side. 
74. breme, tierce. 
79. Marches, the Border. 
93. Westchester, Chester. 
105. The minstrel is wrong again. 
109. But all only, all except. 
158. ancients, ensigns, flags. 

163. Fin wiiiiama is probably meant to represent Llewellyn, 
a name which Shakespeare spells Fluellen ; but the lord is unknown. 
173. orders, prepares. 
180. may, maiden ; the Virgin Mary. 
184. scantly, scarcely. 






NOTES 189 

192, 193. See note on 1. 32. 

196. dree, endure, hold out. 

199. Notice thorough, in this line and the next, an old form of 
through surviving in thoroughfare. 

241. food, man, knight. 

247. leve, grant. 

253 6. A grotesque error of the minstrel. Crecy was fought 
26 August, 1346, and Poictiers on 19 September, 1356. 



CHEVY CHASE. 

This is a seventeenth-century version of an older ballad, The 
Hunting of the Cheviot, which is apparently founded upon the story 
of the Battle of Otterburn, fought 19 August, 1388. All that is left 
in the present ballad is a duel between Earl Percy of Northumberland 
and Earl Douglas. This version was appraised by Joseph Addison 
(1672 1719) in the Spectator; while Sir Philip Sidney's eulogy of an 
earlier version is even more famous. 

4. Chevy, Cheviot ; Chase, hunting-ground. 

37. quarry, deer killed in the hunt. 

49. Tividale, Teviotdale, in the south of Scotland near the 
Border. A tributary of the Tweed flows through it. 

68. But and if: 'and if is equivalent to 'if,' while 'but' goes 
with 'I durst encounter.' The meaning is, 'There was never yet 
a champion whom I dared not encounter, if it so fell out.' 

106. bade, abode, waited ; bent, field, grass. 

119. wood, mad ; laid on load, dealt heavy blows. 

143. Forwhy : an old English word meaning because. Of. in the 
' Old Hundredth ' hymn (nearly always wrongly printed as two words, 
and with a mark of interrogation) : 

"Forwhy the Lord our God is good." 

198 ff. These names vary in the different versions, and their 
owners for the most part cannot be identified with any certainty. 

242. Humbledown, the battle of Homildon Hill, near Wooler in 
Northumberland, fought 1402, in which Henry IV defeated the Scots; 
but the ballad is again out, as James (1. 225) was not crowned till 
1424. 



190 BALLADS AND POEMS 

THE BATTLE OF HAELAW. 

This battle was fought on 24 July, 1411, between Donald of the 
Isles and an army of Lowlanders under the Earl of Mar and the 
sheriff of Angus. Donald, \vliom the ballad calls "Macdonell," laid 
claim to the Earldom of Boss, and was advancing on Aberdeen when 
he was met at Harlaw and defeated. He lost 900 men, and the 
victors 500. 

1 4. I : the ballad is put into the mouth of ' John Hielan'man,' 
who meets two knights, both unknown to history. Dunldier is a hill 
on the Aberdeen road near Harlaw, which is 18 miles N.W. of Aber 
deen. Netherhall is close by. 

7. Balqunain is a mile south of Harlaw. 

16. she means ' I.' In Scottish dialect one might have expected 
' her.' 

26. Gin, if. 

27. meikle = mickle, much. 
81. maun, must. 

33. We'll try what we can do. 

43. sair, sore. So mair in 1. 45 = more. 

40. we'se, we shall. 

60. Drummlnnor : more than twenty miles away, but the horse 
covers the distance there and back in two hours and a quarter 1 

61. fess, fetch. 
74. ae, one, single. 

78. lieracnie, hubbub, confusion. Pronounce as four syllables. 
90 93. This, of course, must be largely discounted. 
98. speer at, ask of. See Dick o' the Cow, 57, note. 



THE AGINCOURT SONG. 

This and the two following pieces relate to Henry Vs expedition 
into France in 1415, when he captured Harfleur and won the battle 
of Aginoourt (25 October). 

This is a contemporary song, written when the sword was 
mightier than the pen. It is here reduced to modern English ; and 
must be read so as to bring out the final rimes. 

1. Henry landed at the mouth of the Seine ; cf. Drayton's poem, 
1. 6. 



NOTES 191 

6, 6. The Latin refrain means : " England, render thanks to 
God for the victory." 

7. the sooth for to say, to tell the truth. Perhaps the should be 
thee, meaning 'to tell you the truth.' 

14. Frenche : a form of the genitive. 

15. In modern English we should insert 'neither' before the 
word 'for.' 

16. Agincourt is about half-way between the river Homme and 
Calais. 

32. well-willing, well-wishers, adherents. 



KING HENRY THE FIFTH'S CONQUEST OF FRANCE. 

The story of the tennis-balls is scarcely to be accepted as his 
torical, though it is supported by tradition from contemporary 
chronicles. Shakespeare made use of it in his play of Henry V 
(Act i, Scene 2). 

14. lie : bad grammar necessitated by the rime. 

19. Some accounts say it was a ' ton ' of tennis-balls. 

35 6. There is no historical confirmation of this kindness on 
Henry's part. 

49. This also lacks authority. Henry left France as soon as 
possible after the battle. 

55 6. This refers to the subsequent marriage of Henry V to 
Katharine, the daughter of Charles VI of France. 



AGINCOURT. 

This poem, written two centuries after the battle, is a more 
circumstantial account of the incident than either of the foregoing 
pieces. 

3. prove, try, make trial of. 

6. Caux was where Havre now stands. 

13 16. The French army took up their position at Agincourt, 
barring the way to Calais, whither Henry V was marching. 

17. Which refers to the French general. 

19. his refers to Henry, and so does he in 1. 21. 

24. their refers to the French, the ' nation vile.' Notice the bad 
construction of this verse ; the grammar is involved. 



192 BALLADS AND POEMS 

27. As a matter of fact the French were about four or five times 
the number of the English, who were eight or ten thousand strong. 

41. Poictiers (1356) was partially, and Cre9y (1346) mainly, won 
by English archers ; therefore ' swords ' is misleading. 

49. The Duke of York : grandson of Edward III. 

50. vaward= vanguard; see note on Durham Field, 1. 55. 

63. Excester : old spelling of Exeter. John Holland, afterwards 
Duke of Exeter, was in the battle, but the rear was led by Lord 
Camoya. 

66. Sir Thomas Erpingham was marshal of the English army. 

82. bilbos, swords, from Bilbao in Spain. 

89. This while, meanwhile. 

91. ding, hurl. 

93. lent, gave. 

94. besprent, sprinkled. 

97. Humphrey Duke of Gloucester, the king's youngest brother. 

101. The Duke of Clarence, Henry's third brother, was not at 
the battle. Nor was the Earl of Warwick (1. 105). 

113. Saint Crispin's Day, October 25, is the feast of two saints, 
Crispin and Crispinian. The battle of Balaclava took place on the 
same day in 1854. 

Michael Drayton (71563 1631) was a Jacobean poet who compiled 
many long poems, historical and topographical. He wrote a longer 
poem also on Agincourt, but this, and one of his sonnets, are the 
best-known pieces. 



THE ROSE OF ENGLAND. 

This poem is remarkable amongst traditional ballads for having 
an allegory, sustained almost throughout. It deals with the winning 
of the crown of England from Kichard III by the Earl of Richmond, 
afterwards Henry VII. 

1. The garden is, of course, England. 

7. the rose so red, Edward Y. A red rose was the badge of the 
house of Lancaster. 

8. rise, twig, branch. 

13. The boar stands for Richard III, whose cognisance was a 
boar argent. 

15. the seed of the rose, Richmond. 



NOTES 193 

17. Richard was supposed to have murdered Henry VI and his 
son Edward. 

21. The eagle is Lord Stanley, afterwards Earl of Derby, whose 
castle was at Lathom. It is not an historical fact that he was 
protector of Eichmond. 

26. lain, conceal. 

81. A blue boar was the cognisance of the Earl of Oxford. 

32. the boar so white ; see 1. 13 and note. 

49. wend, go. 

52. at Ms own lust, as he desires. 

56. snogged them, moved themselves. 

57. baily, bailiff. Of. 1. 72. 

63. The ballad-maker has recorded only part of a humorous 
incident. Mitton had sworn to admit no enemy of King Bichard 
to the town except over his own body, meaning that he would die 
in defence of the town. Eichmond proposed, therefore, that Mitton 
should lie down, and he would step over his body ; and this (' I am 
sure the chronicles will not lie ') was actually done 1 

75. head, behead. 

93. Atherstone, near Bosworth Field. 

97. The bird was Lord Strange, son of Stanley. 

101. verament, truly. 

105. vanward : see note on Durham Field, 1. 55. 

111. A talbot (a kind of dog) was the badge of the Talbot family, 
Earls of Shrewsbury. This one was Sir Gilbert Talbot. 

112. The unicorn stands for Sir John Savage, did him quite, 
acquitted himself. 

113. the hart's head, Sir William Stanley, Lord Stanleys 
brother. 



SIR ANDREW BARTON. 

This splendid and amusing ballad is founded on an historical 
incident of the reign of Henry VIII. The Portuguese had seized 
a ship commanded by Sir Andrew Barton's father, and the son was 
therefore given letters of reprisal from the King of Scotland. He 
seems to have abused this privilege, and in 1511 Sir Thomas and 
Sir Edward Howard were sent by Henry VIII to capture him. Sir 
Andrew Barton was killed and his ship, the Leon, was taken. 

s. 13 



194 BALLADS AND POEMS 

18. mickle, much, great. See The Battle of Harlaw, 1. 27. 

29. The ballad-maker has got the name wrong ; see above. 

48. thou'st=thou shalt. Cf. 11. 244, 309 ; and see The Battle of 
Harlaw, 1. 49, and note. 

52. bread, breadth. The line means ' if I miss my aim by the 
breadth of three pennies.' Cf. 1. 64. 

91. archboard. It is not known exactly what is meant by this 
word, here or in 1. 114, but the meaning is clear. Perhaps it is the 
same as ' hatch-board ' in 11. 141, 278. Here the sense is ' he grappled 
my ship to the side of his.' 

99. thee fro = from thee. 

104. wot, understand, know. 

109. dearly dight, handsomely fitted out. 

114. The meaning of this line is not clear. See above, 1. 91. 

116. And if =if, even if ; cf. 1. 136. 

134. taken me sworn, exacted an oath of me, i.e. liberated me 
on parole. 

140. After this verse there is a dramatic interval of a night. 

142. See 1. 109. 

145. ancients, ensigns. See Durham Field, 1. 158. 

152. can, know ; here it means ' practise,' or ' show.' 

155. Fortingale, Portuguese. 

172. moe : an old form of ' more.' 

182. that : a superfluous word often occurring in these ballads ; 
cf. 1L 214, 226. 

186. Weet=wit [ye], know. 

208. The beams appear to have been an engine of naval warfare, 
perhaps for grappling two ships together, like the ancient corvus. 
See 1. 116, and later 1. 220. 

209. swarved, swarmed, climbed. 

211. a bearing arrow was perhaps an extra long arrow, or a 
light arrow for long-distance shooting. But cf. 1. 223. 

227 8. This is the ballad-maker's comment. 

248. ship is perhaps a mistake for ' scrip,' bag, or quiver. 

251. apole = Scottish ' spauld,' shoulder. 

255. jack, coat of mail. 

266. lay, wager, bet. 

272. the rest [who] were : for this omission of the relative, cf, 
1. 275. 

280. tnou lands =thou landest. Cf. 1. 74. 



NOTES 195 

293. he means the King. 

300. This astonishing remark is the ballad-maker's own in 
vention. 

310. store, plenty. 

317. i.e. went into another room. 



FLODDEN FIELD. 

The battle of Flodden was fought 9 September, 1513, between 
James IV of Scotland and an English force under the Earl of Surrey. 
Flodden is near the Scottish border in Northumberland. The Scots 
were beaten, and James killed. 

3. lovely : of. ' leeve London ' in Durham Field, 1. 23, and note. 

9. Margaret was the sister of Henry VIII, who was absent in 
France. Her remonstrance with her husband is an historical fact. 

21. Lord Thomas Howard was the Earl of Surrey. He had 
conducted Margaret to Scotland for her marriage in 1503 ; which is 
sufficient ground for the ballad-maker to introduce him as her 
chamberlain ten years later. 

26. mome, fool, dolt. 

29 and 31. Flodden is the name of the hill; Brainstone, now 
Brankston, is a village hard by. 

37. The Scots lost certainly 10,000 men, including members of 
nearly all their aristocratic families. 

45. Jack with a feather is a contemptuous phrase directed at 
James IV's foolhardiness. lapt aH In leather : bodies were some 
times wrapped in leather first, and then in lead, or vice versa. 

47. morrice-dance : an old-fashioned festival dance. 



EDINBURGH AFTER FLODDEN. 

This poem gives the Scottish aspect of the battle, showing the 
receipt of the news of defeat. 

15. This was a popular superstition of old. 

51. riven, torn. 

113. Dunedin, Edinburgh. 

16G. Southron : a Scottish term for Englishmen, living south of 
the border. 

225. leaguer, camp : the same word as the Dutch ' laager.' 

132 



196 BALLADS AND POEMS 

William Edmonstoune Aytoun (1813 1865) was part-author of 
the Bon Gaultier Ballads, an admirable book of light verse, and 
author of Lays of the Scottish Cavaliers, whence this poem and The 
Burial March of Dundee (p. 141) are taken. 



DICK 0' THE COW. 

This traditional ballad is representative of a number of fine heroic 
ballads of the Border between England and Scotland, many centring 
round Liddesdale, a long valley running north-east from above 
Carlisle and containing the Liddel river. The Armstrong family 
in particular were notorious cattle-raiders and freebooters, and 
Johnnie has a ballad to himself. 

The ' Cow ' in ' Dickie's ' name does not refer to cattle, as the 
Scottish form of that is ' ky. ' ' Cow ' probably means ' brush ' or 
'broom': see 1. 35. 

2. riding means riding out to steal cattle, or raiding. 

8. Udder, lazy. 

6. Billie is not a proper name here : 'billie' is Scottish for brother, 
and it is the same word as ' bully,' used by Shakespeare of Bottom 
the weaver in A Midsummer Night'g Dream. Cf. 1. 74. 

7. feed, feud. 

18. know, knoll, hill. 

31. he, of course, is Dick o' the Cow. 

82." i.e. cease your crying. 

52. sta' = stole. 

54. Hairibee, the place of execution in Carlisle. 

57. at = from: so constantly with verbs of asking. 

61. Puddinburn is said to have been a house in the middle of 
Liddesdale. 

62. dree, endure, hold oat. 

81. his burden of batts, all the blows he can bear. This verse 

has an extra line in it for some reason. 

85. hough = hock, heel. 

87. dought, was able. 

93. mense, pen, house. 

95. Maiigertoun is another house in Liddesdale. 

98. aevery, ravenous. 
104. St. Mary knot, a triple knot. 



NOTES 197 

130. Jack, jerkin. Cf. Sir Andrew Barton, 1. 255. 

131. hang leugh, hung low. 

137. Cannotrie is near the lower end of Liddesdale. 

141. mo, old form of ' more.' Cf. Sir Andrew Barton, 1. 172. 

143. lee-lang, livelong ; the whole (day), 

158. blan, stopped. 

161. plummet, pommel. 

164. Gramercie = <7rand merci, great thanks. 

186. gart=garred, made, caused. 

187. limmer, rascal. 

224. and = if. Cf. 1. 241, and often elsewhere. 

238. lap a loup, leapt a leap. 

239. leugh, laughed. 

EAKL BOTHWELL. 

The ballad-maker, obviously a supporter of Darnley, represents 
that the ' king ' (Darnley) was murdered by way of revenge for his 
participation in the murder of David Biccio, the Queen's favourite, 
here called ' Lord David. 1 He also says that Mary sent for Darnley 
to come to Scotland, and that she was 'bitterly banished' by the 
Begent Murray. The ballad therefore cannot be taken as historically 
accurate. 

1. Woe worth thee=woe be to thee. 

2. sleight, trick. 

10. i.e. to be above lords. 

12. This is a proverb, signifying that privileges have their draw 
backs, or that one has to pay the price of exalted rank. 

19. And tho* = even though. 

24. Some accounts say that Biccio received fifty wounds. 

30. rushes were formerly strewn on floors in place of carpets. 

33. boun, ready. Cf. Durham Field, 1. 8. 

37. lope, leapt. 

39. Bothwell : James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell, Queen Mary's 
second husband, either himself slew Darnley, or ordered him to be 
slain, as he was trying to escape after the explosion of gunpowder 
from a house called Kirk o' Field, near Edinburgh. How far Mary 
was privy to the plot is disputed; but certainly she married Bothwell 
shortly afterwards. 

50. deemedst : deem is an older form of doom. 



198 BALLADS AND POEMS 



THE RISING IN THE NORTH. 

This ballad gives only an imperfect account of the rebellion in 
1569 of the Earls of Northumberland and Westmoreland, with 
Bichard Norton, sheriff of York, and others, in support of Mary, 
then in prison at Tutbury, and in opposition to Queen Elizabeth. 
On 14 November, they entered Durham Cathedral, tore up the 
English Bible and Prayer-book, and said mass. A month later 
they were met at Wetherby by an English army under the Earls 
of Warwick and Clinton, and fled without fighting. 

1, 2. This is a characteristic opening of old ballads and romances. 
Lithe, attend. 

28. borrow, hostage, security. 

44. blan : from blin, to linger. Cf. 1. 136, and Dick o' the Cow, 
1. 168. 

61. I wia: the old English i-wis = surely, was later on confused 
with I wiss, a mistaken form of I wot=I know. 

69. night, promised. 

61. Gramercy=<7rand merci, great thanks. Cf. Dick o' the 
Cow, 1. 164. 

66. Bichard Norton had eleven sons, seven of whom engaged in 
the rebellion, and eight daughters. Francis, the eldest son, as a 
matter of fact took a prominent part, though Christopher was the 
most arclent. It was rather William who refused to rebel. 

89. wend, go. 

92. dee : northern form of die. 

93. Norton was seventy-one years of age at the time. 
101. ancient, ensign : see Durham Field, 1. 158. 

103. One greyhound's head appears on the Nevilles' banner, with 
a dun bull. 

114. Sir George Bowes surrendered Barnard Castle on 12 De 
cember. 

121. leave: see note on Durham Field, 1. 23. 

136. stint, stopped : blan, see 1. 44. 

146. ruth, pity. 



NOTES 199 



MARY AMBREE. 

There is no historical foundation known for this exploit, which is 
supposed to have taken place at the siege of Ghent in 1584. The 
ballad became very popular, and Ben Jonson constantly refers to it. 
Kudyard Kipling has taken the title of one of his books from the first 
line. 

2. Gaunt, Ghent, in Flanders. 

5. Sir John Major is unknown. Possibly the words are a cor 
ruption of ' sergeant-major.' 



BRAVE LORD WILLOUGHBY. 

It is impossible to say with certainty to what ' fight ' this song 
refers, but it may perhaps refer to the battle of Zutphen, where Sir 
Philip Sidney lost his life, in 1586. Lord Willoughby died in 1601. 

8. Lord Willoughby was Peregrine Bertie, who inherited the title 
of Baron Willoughby of Eresby from his mother. 

9. Sir John Norris, by whose side Lord Willoughby fought in 
several engagements in the Netherlands. 

11. Turner was also a well-known soldier in the Low Countries. 
21. caliver, gun. 

38. savourly, with good appetite. 
55. stout, bold. 

THE ARMADA. 

5. The exact date was 30 July. 

7. Aurigny's isle; the French name for Alderney, one of the 
Channel Islands. 

12. Edgecumbe : Mount Edgecumbe is west of Plymouth Sound. 
14. post, messenger. 

16. halberdiers, men carrying a long-handled axe. 

21 2. A description of the English standard ; the gay lilies are 
the lilies of France. 

23. Picard field, Crecy. The next line refers to John of Bohemia, 
the Genoese crossbow-men, and Charles, afterwards Emperor. 

30. semper eadem ( = always the same) was Queen Elizabeth's 
motto. 



200 BALLADS AND POEMS 

85. Eddystone, a rock now bearing a famous and important 
light-house, off Plymouth ; Berwick on the Scotch border ; Lynn, 
King's Lynn in Norfolk; Milford Bay in South Wales. 

38. Saint Michael's Mount in Cornwall ; Beachy Head in Sussex. 

41. The chain of signal-fires proceeds from Devon and Somerset 
(Longleat is near Frome) to Wiltshire, Dorsetshire, and Hampshire. 

46. There is a gap in the chain here, as Richmond could not see 
beacons either at Clifton or Beaulieu. 

65. Darwin probably means the Derwent in the Peak District of 
Derbyshire. 

71. Belvoir, the seat of the Duke of Rutland, on the borders of 
Lincolnshire and Leicestershire. 

73. Gaunt's embattled pile, Lancaster Castle, rebuilt by John of 
Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster. 

Thomas Babington, Lord Macanlay (1800 1859) was chiefly an 
historian and politician, and the bulk of his verse is not large. This 
splendid fragment, which was no doubt an experiment suggested by 
a similar description of a chain of beacons in the Agamemnon of 
Aeschylus, illustrates his mastery of the use of proper names. 

THE DEFEAT OF THE SPANISH ARMADA. 

This is a seventeenth-century song illustrative of the general 
rejoicings caused by the defeat of the Armada. It was sung to the 
tune of 'Jog on, jog on,' a verse of which is sung by Autolycus in 
Shakespeare's Winter's Tale, Act iv, Scene 2. 

3. The Armada left Lisbon at the end of May. 

7. bravado, boast. 

13. Don Pedro means the Duke of Medina Sidonia. 

14. the Knight of the Sun was the hero of an old romantic tale, 
translated from Spanish. 

48. speed, fare, suffer. 

THE FAME OF SIR FRANCIS DRAKE. 

This little contemporary poem is included for the sake of the 
quaint suggestion in the last couplet. Drake began his famous 
voyage of circumnavigation in 1577, and travelling from east to 
west, like the sun, arrived home in 1580. The sun therefore over 
took and passed ' his fellow-traveller ' more than a thousand times 1 



NOTES 201 



CAPTAIN WARD AND THE RAINBOW. 

Captain John Ward was a 'rover' or pirate from about 1604 1609. 
The Rainbow was the name of one of the ships taken by Drake in the 
expedition to Cadiz in 1587. The incidents in the ballad lack 
authority. 

89 93. The king regrets the loss of George Clifford, Earl of 
Cumberland; Charles Blount, Lord Mountjoy; and Eobert Devereux, 
Earl of Essex, already referred to in 1. 71. 



WHEN THE KING ENJOYS HIS OWN AGAIN. 

A famous Jacobite song, sung to a still more famous tune (which 
was also used by Hanoverians in later years), it first supported the 
interests of Charles I, then encouraged the Cavaliers, promoted the 
Restoration of Charles II, and after 1688 was the mainstay of the 
adherents of the exiled family. 

1. Booker, with Fond, Rivers, Swallow, Dove, and Dade below, 
were astrologers and makers of almanacs containing prophecies for 
the year. 

31. This line dates the song to 1643. 

Martin Parker was one of the most prominent ballad-writers of 
the seventeenth century, who got their living by writing verses, on 
popular subjects, printed as ' broadsides ' and hawked about the 
streets. Very little is known of his life. 

SIR NICHOLAS AT MARSTON MOOR 

The battle was fought 2 July, 1644, Prince Rupert and Newcastle 
leading the Royalist army against a larger one under Cromwell, who 
won a decisive victory. 

3. Lucas ; Sir Charles Lucas led a division of Royalists. 

15. Fairfax held the right wing of Cromwell's army, both foot 
and horse. 

21. Cf. The Battle of Naseby, 1. 12. 

52. William Lenthall was Speaker of the House of Commons. 
Hugh Feters was an army-chaplain and preacher. 

Winthrop Mackworth Praed (1802 1839) was a writer of graceful 
and charming verse in various styles. 

135 



202 BALLADS AND POEMS 



THE BATTLE OF NASEBY. 

Naseby, fought 14 June, 1645, was the final defeat of Charles I, 
and another success for Cromwell and his son-in-law Ireton. 

11. The Man of Blood, Charles I. 

12. Astley and Sir Marmaduke Langdale were in command of 
bodies of cavalry. 

25. Eupert's charge broke the left wing of the Parliamentary 
army under Ireton, but the Prince went too far in pursuit, ae he 
had done at Edge Hill. 

29. Skippon led the infantry in the centre of Cromwell's army, 
and was hard pressed ; but Cromwell came to his assistance from the 
right wing. 

43. broad-pieces, money. 

46. lemans, an old English word for sweethearts. 

57. she of the seven hills : Borne, built on seven hills. 



ON THE LORD GENERAL FAIRFAX AT THE 
SIEGE OF COLCHESTER. 

Sir Thomas Fairfax was the general-in-chief of the Parliamentary 
army, and when the Eoyalists attempted further risings, two years 
after the overthrow of Charles I, Fairfax laid siege to Colchester and 
took it, 28 August, 1648, thus ending the most important of such 
disturbances. 

3. This is exaggerated praise, though Fairfax was very successful. 

7. Hydra : one of the labours of Hercules was to slay the Hydra, 
a monster with a hundred heads, whose quality was such that two 
more sprang up for each one cut off. Of. The Fire of London^ 1. 93. 

8. imp : a term used in falconry to mean the mending of a bird's 
wing artificially. 

13. fraud : a reference to the suspected misappropriation of 
public moneys by a section of the Parliamentarians. 

John Milton (1608 1674), England's second greatest poet, wrote 
very little of his poetry during the twenty years of civil war and 
disturbance, but a great deal of controversial matter in beautiful if 
faulty prose. 



NOTES 203 

AN HORATIAN ODE UPON CROMWELL'S 
RETURN FROM IRELAND. 

This ode is called Horatian on account of the resemblance of its 
literary form to the odes of Horace. Cromwell returned from Ireland 
in May, 1650. 

4. numbers, verses. Cf. ' I am ill at these numbers,' Hamlet, n. 2 ; 
and Longfellow's Psalm of Life, ' Tell me not in mournful numbers.' 

15. thorough : see note on Durham Field, 1. 199. 

18. emulous, jealous. 

23. Caesar means the King. 

32. bergamot, a kind of pear-tree. 

46. i.e. where did not Cromwell inflict the heaviest blow? 

47. Hampton refers to the King's stay at Hampton Court during 
1647, whence he fled to the Isle of Wight and became a prisoner in 
Carisbrook Castle. 

66. assured, made secure. 

67 72. This refers to a legend of ancient Home. When the 
foundations were being dug for a temple on the Capitol, the workmen, 
it was said, saw a human head, which was supposed to be prophetic 
of the future success of the city. 

79. The Irish did not consider Cromwell's treatment 'just,' or 
even justifiable. 

87. what he may, as far as he can. 

104. climacteric here means dangerous, or critical. Derived from 
the Greek word for a ' step' in a ladder, it originally meant periodical ; 
and thence it was applied to recurrent diseases, or periods of life 
which were supposed to be dangerous. 

105. Plot : the early inhabitants of Scotland were so called. 
Andrew Marvell (16211678), member of Parliament for Hull, 

a friend of Milton, and an admirer of Cromwell, wrote most of his 
poetry in the first half of his life. Later he became an ardent 
politician, and wrote violent satire. 

TO CROMWELL. 

Milton addressed this sonnet to Cromwell in the year after the 
' crowning mercy ' of his victory at Worcester, 3 September, 1651, 
and the year before the end of the Long Parliament, 1653. 



204 BALLADS AND POEMS 

7. Darwen : a stream flowing into the Bibble in Lancashire, near 
which the invading Scots under the Duke of Hamilton had been 
routed in 1648, in the battle of Preston. 

8. Dunbar, near North Berwick, was the scene of another victory 
of Cromwell's in 1650. 

12. The emphasised word is souls. Milton hints to Cromwell 
that after his conquests under arms he must enter into religious 
conflict with the intolerant Presbyterians, whom Milton calls ' hire 
ling wolves.' 

THE FIRE OF LONDON. 

This calamity took place in September, 1666, the fire burning for 
three days. 

2. France and Holland: the struggle with the Dutch, due to 
commercial rivalry, had been going on for five years when in 1665 
they called on Louis XIV of France to assist them. Engagements 
took place off the mouth of the Thames, in which the English were 
eventually successful. 

22. It began in a baker's shop, in Pudding Lane, near New Fish 
Street. 

23. All the City from the Tower to Temple Bar was destroyed, 
including old St Paul's Cathedral. 

45. letted, hindered. 

49. Traitors' heads, after execution, were fixed on London 
Bridge. 

74. The fate of Simois : Simois is a mistake for Xanthus or 
Scamander, a river that was dried up by Hephaestus for trying to 
drown Achilles. See Homer's Iliad, Book xxi. 

101. The fire began to abate on the evening of the 5th of 
September. 

114. The fire was undoubtedly beneficial in the event to the city 
of London ; and the subsequent widening of the streets helped to 
banish the dreaded Plague from England. 

John Dryden (16311700), poet laureate 16701700, was both 
poet, dramatist, and critic. As poet and essayist he stands head 
and shoulders above his contemporaries, and very high in English 
literature; but his plays are not so distinguished. This piece is 
extracted from a longer poem called Annus Mirabilis, a history in 
verse of the eventful year 1666. 



NOTES 205 

THE SONG OF THE WESTERN MEN. 

Lines 6 8 of this poem have been proverbial in Cornwall ever 
since James II in 1688 imprisoned the Seven Bishops, one of whom 
was Sir Jonathan Trelawney. 

11. Michael's hold, Saint Michael's Mount, in Cornwall (see 
The Armada, 1. 38). 

13. Tamar, the river dividing Cornwall from Devonshire (see 
The Armada, 1. 41). 

Bobert Stephen Hawker (1803 1875) wrote several volumes of 
verse. This poem, based on three traditional lines (see above), was 
first printed anonymously in a newspaper, which led to its being 
taken for the original traditional poem ; and as such it deceived Sir 
Walter Scott, Lord Macaulay, and Charles Dickens, who all praised 
it. Hawker wrote it in 1825. 

THE BUEIAL MARCH OP DUNDEE. 

John Graham (or Graeme), formerly Claverhouse and then 
Viscount Dundee, gathered the Highland clans round him and rose 
against William and Mary and on behalf of James II, in 1689. He 
was met by William's general, Mackay, in the Pass of Killiecrankie, 
on 27 July ; and the Highlanders from a commanding position swept 
the English down the pass. 

24. Montrose, another Graham, the first to discover the capacity 
of the Highlanders for war. 

28. Schehallion, the mountain overlooking the Pass of Killie 
crankie. 

36. On 3 May, 1679, the Archbishop of St Andrews was murdered 
by Covenanters on Magus Muir, near St Andrews. 

91. slogan, war-cry. 

ADMIRAL BENBOW. 

1. Admiral John Benbow (1653 1702) was cruising in the West 
Indies, not Virginia nor Fayal (which is in the Azores), when on 
19 August he sighted a French squadron. 

3. The English ships were seven in number, the French nine, of 
which four were men-of-war, one a transport, aud four small frigates. 



206 BALLADS AND POEMS 

13. The engagement lasted from 21 August to the 24th, the 
morning on which Benbow's right leg was shattered by a chain-shot. 

19. Benbow, on the contrary, insisted on being carried up, after 
his wound was dressed, to the quarter-deck. 

23. Benbow died at Port Royal and was buried at Kingston, in 
Jamaica, in November, 1702. 



AFTER BLENHEIM. 

This poem is a satire both on the horrors of war in general, and 
on the far-reaching causes of this battle in particular, which was the 
greatest in the war of the Spanish Succession. The English under 
the Duke of Marlborough, with their Austrian allies under Prince 
Eugene, defeated the French and Bavarians at Blenheim in 1704. 

23. The English and their allies lost 5000 men, and the French 
many more. 

Robert Sonthey (1774 1843), poet laureate from 18131843, 
was during his life associated with Coleridge and Wordsworth, who 
succeeded him in the laureateship ; but he is now under-rated. Other 
well-known poems of his are How the water comes down at Lodore, 
The Inchcape Rock, and Bishop Hatto. 



THE VICAR OF BRAY. 

A certain Canon of Windsor is said to have been Vicar of Bray, 
near Maidenhead, from 1540 to 1588, and to have been a Papist under 
Henry VllI, a Protestant under Edward VI, a Papist again under 
Mary, and a Protestant again under Elizabeth. This gave rise to 
a proverb, ' The Vicar of Bray will be Vicar of Bray still.' This song, 
which is said to have been written by a soldier in the reign of George I, 
does not record history so much as illustrate the continued change of 
religious and political opinion in England from the time of the Stuarts 
to the Hanoverians. 



A BALLAD OF THE BOSTON TEA-PARTY. 

In 1770 Lord North caused Parliament to abolish all duties except 
that on tea, which he acknowledged he retained to assert England's 
right to tax the Colonies. In 1773, a large quantity of tea arrived in 






NOTES 207 

Boston Harbour, and some of the inhabitants disguised themselves as 
lied Indians, and flung the whole of the tea overboard. 
63. The Dartmouth was one of the tea-ships. 
82. rock, distaff (a Scottish word). 

104. Hyson, the name of a once-familiar brand of tea. See The 
Ingoldsby Legends : 

But I and my son 

Mix black with our Hyson. 

THE LOSS OF THE ROYAL GEORGE. 

The Boyal George of 108 guns sank in the Solent off Spithead in 
1782. 

5. The number drowned was over 900. 

7, 8. The ship was ' careened,' or laid on one side, for repairs. 

22. Admiral Kempenfelt was writing in his cabin at the moment 
of the disaster. 

30. The ship was never raised. 

THE BATTLE OF THE BALTIC. 

In 1801 England sent a fleet under Admiral Sir Hyde Parker, with 
Nelson second in command, into the Baltic to intimidate the alliance 
known as the Armed Neutrality, one of whose objects was the dimi 
nution of the English domination of the sea. The fleet first demanded 
that the Danes should leave the Alliance, and on their refusal attacked 
Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark. 

1. Nelson was in the forefront of the attack. It was here that 
the traditional episode occurred of his putting a telescope to his blind 
eye, and thus pretending not to see the recall signal issued by his less 
confident superior, Parker. 

10. leviathans : a vague term, used for marine monsters, generally 
whales. 

63. Elsinore (Helsingfors) is a fort commanding the approach by 
sea to Copenhagen. It is the scene of Shakespeare's Hamlet. 

67. Riou was the name of a captain killed in the battle. 

Thomas Campbell (1777 1844) is now chiefly remembered by two 
or three songs of war, including this one and Ye Mariners of England 
(see p. 162). They are noticeable on account of their original metres, 
cleverly managed by the poet. 



208 BALLADS AND POEMS 



CHARACTER OF THE HAPPY WARRIOR. 

Wordsworth himself says that this poem, which does not specifi 
cally refer to Nelson, was inspired by the thought of him. It was 
written in 1806 ; Nelson died at the battle of Trafalgar on 21 October, 
1805. 

4. Notice real is two syllables, which is the proper pronunciation, 
and formerly was always used. 

19, 20. to abate her feeling, to become callous. 

29. This means ' where men are tempted to guard against ill by 
evil measures, and (1. 31) even what they do well, or to a good end, is 
based on wrong, he (the Happy Warrior) bases good on good.' 

43. they means ' wealth and honours.' 

69. bias : a metaphor from the game of bowls. The bowls 
contain a weight, which makes them roll not in a straight line. 

68. toward, favourable. 

85. The whole poem consists of two sentences. 

William Wordsworth (17701850), poet laureate 18431850 
(succeeding Southey, see notes on After Blenheim, p. 206), is usually 
put with Coleridge at the head of the literary revolt from artificiality 
and the ' return to nature ' which marked the close of the eighteenth 
century. Unequal in his poetry, he occasionally attained the heights 
of true inspiration and poetic diction, and is always an interesting 
and stimulating poet to read. 



YE MARINERS OF ENGLAND. 

Another fine song of Thomas Campbell's (see notes on The Battle 
of the Baltic). It was founded on a seventeenth-century song, be 
ginning ; 

You gentlemen of England 
Who live at home at ease. 

Again notice the fine effect produced by Campbell's ingenious 
variation of the pause in the seventh line of each verse. 

6. This probably refers to Russia's declaration of war in 1807. 

15. Blake destroyed a fleet of Spain in the harbour of Tenerifle, 
in the Canary Islands, 20 April, 1657. He died in the same year, 
but not in battle. 



NOTES 209 



THE BURIAL OF SIR JOHN MOORE AT CORUNNA. 

Sir John Moore, in the winter of 1808 9, was driven into the 
north-west corner of Spain by Marshals Soult and Ney, acting under 
Napoleon's instructions ' to drive him into the sea.' He stood at bay 
at Corunna on the coast, waiting for ships to take his army off. They 
arrived on 15 January, 1809, and Moore embarked all but the soldiers. 
The next day the French attacked in force, but were repulsed, though 
Moore lost his life. 

2. It was Moore's own wish to be buried where he fell. 

9. No coffin could be procured. 

27. The burial-party were alarmed by firing at about eight in the 
morning. 

Charles Wolfe (1791 1823), an obscure Irish clergyman, wrote 
this famous poem at some time between 1812 and 1815 while at 
Trinity College, Dublin. It is remarkable not only for its own merit, 
but for the facts that Wolfe wrote hardly anything else, and that the 
authorship was claimed by and attributed to a number of people, 
including Lord Byron. 

WATERLOO. 

1. The poem opens with a description of the Duchess of 
Richmond's ball at Brussels, Belgium's capital, and Wellington's 
headquarters, on 15 June, 1815. The Duke attended the ball, 
though he knew of Napoleon's advance, in order to prevent any 
alarm being given. 

18. There was no fighting on this night, nor till the next day ; 
so this description is imaginary. 

20. Brunswick's fated chieftain, the Duke of Brunswick was 
killed at Quatre Bras on the 16th. 

46 7. The Camerons were the 79th Eegiment ; Albyn's hills 
means the Highlands. 

54. Donald Cameron of Lochiel was in the Jacobite rebellion 
of 1745. 

68. As a matter of fact, the battles of Ligny and Quatre Bras on 
the 16th preceded the great battle of Waterloo on the 18th. 

George Gordon Byron, Lord Byron (1788 1824), in a short, 
brilliant, and merry life, gained an immense audience, and supplied 



210 BALLADS AND POEMS 

it with a novel form of romantic verse-tales and dramas. Only at 
the end of his career did he find his true medium, the original and 
lively medley Don Juan, infinitely his greatest contribution to literature. 



ENGLAND'S DEAD. 

9. This refers to an expedition sent in 1801 to Egypt to drive out 
the French army. 

39. Eoncesvalles, in the Pyrenees, where Charlemagne is re 
corded to have fought the Moors. One of many engagements 
between French and English in 1813 took place on the same spot. 



VICTORIA'S TEARS. 

Queen Victoria succeeded to the throne of England on the death 
of William IV in 1837. 

4. all other : i.e. all other majesty. 

Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806 1861), wife of the poet Bx>bert 
Browning, was gifted with true poetical intuition and imagination, 
but her poems are often hampered by her lack of a musical ear and 
of range of expression. Nevertheless she is easily the first of English 
women poets. 



ODE ON THE DEATH OF THE DUKE 
OF WELLINGTON. 

The Duke of Wellington died on 14 September, 1852. The poem 
was written within a week of his death, an extraordinary feat, con 
sidering the high level to which it attains. 

9. He was buried in St Paul's Cathedral (see 1. 49), beside Nelson. 

15. Representatives of every European army attended the funeral, 
as well as of every British regiment. 

30. Wellington's life falls into two parts, the first military, the 
second political. 

42. i.. the conqueror of Napoleon. 

80 2. Supposed to be spoken Ly Nelson, the ' mighty Seaman.' 

99. Wellington's first victory was at the battle of Assaye iu 1803, 
when with four or five thousand men he routed 60,000 Muhiattas. 






NOTES 211 

101 118. Wellington's methods and success in the Peninsular 
War are commemorated in these lines. Between 1809 and 1814 he 
drove the French northwards from Lisbon and beyond the Pyrenees. 

119133. Napoleon, banished to Elba in 1814, returned in 1815, 
but after a reign of two or three months was finally defeated by 
Wellington on Sunday (' that loud Sabbath ') 18 June, 1815, in ' that 
world-earthquake, Waterloo.' 

197. horn : the cornucopia, or horn of plenty. 

229. He was popularly called ' The Iron Duke.' 

Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809 1892), poet laureate in succession 
to Wordsworth from 1850 till his death, was writing poetry the whole 
of his life, and, unlike many poets, continually improving. He created 
a new and most musical form of blank verse, wrote many beautiful 
lyrics, and throughout handled his native language with care and 
success. 



THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE. 

Immediately after the Charge of the Heavy Brigade, an order 
arrived from Lord Eaglan, the commander -in-chief, that the cavalry, 
under Lord Cardigan, were to recover certain guns that had been 
abandoned earlier in the day. The officer who brought the order 
was killed, and it has never been resolved who was to blame for the 
blunder ' (1. 12). 

38. Only about half the 600 returned. The episode illustrates 
a not unparalleled feature of British warfare, a blunder of organisation 
counterbalanced by personal gallantry, individual or collective. The 
famous phrase ' C'est magnifique, mais ce n'est pas la guerre,' said to 
have been used on this occasion by a French general, sums up the 
situation neatly. 



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