Child's Ballads/208


AEdit

OUR king has wrote a lang letter,
And sealed it owre with gold;
He sent to my lord Dunwaters,
To read it if he could.
He has not sent it with a boy, with a boy,
Nor with anie Scotch lord;
But he's sent it with the noblest knight
Eer Scotland could afford.
The very first line that my lord did read,
He gave a smirkling smile;
Before he had the half o't read,
The tears from his eyes did fall.
'Come saddle to me my horse,' he said,
'Come saddle to me with speed;
For I must away to fair London town,
For me was neer more need.'
Out and spoke his lady gay,
In child-bed where she lay:
'I would have you make your will, my lord Dunwaters,
Before you go away.'
'I leave to you, my eldest son,
My houses and my land;
I leave to you, my second son,
Ten thousand pounds in hand.
'I leave to you, my lady gay-+--+-
You are my wedded wife-+--+-
I leave to you, the third of my estate;
That'll keep you in a lady's life.'
They had not rode a mile but one,
Till his horse fell owre a stane:
'It's warning gude eneuch,' my lord Dunwaters said,
'Alive I'll neer come hame.'
When they came into fair London town,
Into the courtiers' hall,
The lords and knichts in fair London town
Did him a traitor call.
'A traitor! a traitor!' says my lord,
'A traitor! how can that be,
An it was na for the keeping of five thousand men
To fight for King Jamie?
'O all you lords and knichts in fair London town,
Come out and see me die;
O all you lords and knichts into fair London town,
Be kind to my ladie.
'There's fifty pounds in my richt pocket,
Divide it to the poor;
There's other fifty pounds in my left pocket,
Divide it from door to door.'

BEdit

THE king he wrote a love-letter,
And he sealed it up with gold,
And he sent it to Lord Derwentwater,
For to read it if he could.
The first two lines that he did read,
They made him for to smile;
But the next two lines he looked upon
Made the tears from his eyes to fall.
'Oh,' then cried out his lady fair,
As she in child-bed lay,
'Make your will, make your will, Lord Derwentwater,
Before that you go away.'
'Then here's for thee, my lady fair,
. . . .
A thousand pounds of beaten gold,
To lead you a lady's life.'
. . . .
. . his milk-white steed,
The ring dropt from his little finger,
And his nose it began to bleed.
He rode, and he rode, and he rode along,
Till he came to Westminster Hall,
Where all the lords of England's court
A traitor did him call.
'Oh, why am I a traitor?' said he;
'Indeed, I am no such thing;
I have fought the battles valiantly
Of James, our noble king.'
O then stood up an old gray-headed man,
With a pole-axe in his hand:
Tis your head, 'tis your head, Lord Derwentwater,
'Tis your head that I demand.'
. . . .
His eyes with weeping sore,
He laid his head upon the block,
And words spake never more.

CEdit

THE king has written a broad letter,
And seald it up with gold,
And sent it to the lord of Derwentwater,
To read it if he would.
He sent it with no boy, no boy,
Nor yet with eer a slave,
But he sent it with as good a knight
As eer a king could have.
When he read the three first lines,
He then began to smile;
And when he read the three next lines
The tears began to sile.

DEdit

THE king has written a braid letter,
And seald it up wi gowd,
And sent it to Lord Derntwater,
To read it if he coud.
The first lines o't that he read,
A blythe, blythe man was he;
But ere he had it half read through,
The tear blinded his ee.
'Go saddle to me my milk-white horse,
Go saddle it with speed;
For I maun ride to Lun[n]on town,
To answer for my head.'
'Your will, your will, my lord Derntwater,
Your will before ye go;
For you will leave three dochters fair,
And a wife to wail and woe.'
'My will, my will, my lady Derntwater?
Ye are my wedded wife;
Be kind, be kind to my dochters dear,
If I should lose my life.'
He set his ae fit on the grund,
The tither on the steed;
The ring upon his finger burst,
And his nose began to bleed.
He rode till he cam to Lunnon town,
To a place they ca Whiteha;
And a' the lords o merry England
A traitor him gan ca.
'A traitor! a traitor! O what means this?
A traitor! what mean ye?'
'It's a' for the keeping o five hundred men
To fecht for bonny Jamie.'
Then up started a gray-headed man,
Wi a braid axe in his hand:
'Your life, your life, my lord Derntwater,
Your life's at my command.'
'My life, my life, ye old gray-headed man,
My life I'll freely gie;
But before ye tak my life awa
Let me speak twa words or three.
'I've fifty pounds in ae pocket,
Go deal it frae door to door;
I've fifty five i the other pocket,
Go gie it to the poor.
'The velvet coat that I hae on,
Ye may take it for your fee;
And a' ye lords o merry Scotland
Be kind to my ladie!'

EEdit

THE king wrote a letter to my lord Derwentwater,
And he sealed it with gold;
He sent it to my Lord Derwentwater,
To read it if he could.
He sent it by no boy,
He sent it by no slave,
But he sent it by as true a knight
As heart could wish or have.
The very first line that he looked upon
Made him for to laugh and to smile;
The very next line that he looked upon,
The tears from his eyes did fall.
He called to his stable-boy
To saddle his bonny grey steed,
'That I unto loving London
May ride away with speed.'
'His wife heard him say so,
In childbed as she lay;
Says she, 'My lord Derwentwater,
Make thy will before thou goest away.'
'It's to my little son I give
My houses and my land,
And to my little daughter
Ten thousand pounds in hand.
'And unto thee, my lady gay,
Who is my wedded wife,
The third part of my estate thou shalt have,
To maintain thee through thy life.'
He set his foot in the level stirrup,
And mounted his bonny grey steed;
The gold rings from his fingers did break,
And his nose began for to bleed.
He had not ridden past a mile or two,
When his horse stumbled over a stone;
'These are tokens enough,' said my lord Derwentwater,
'That I shall never return.'
He rode and he rode till he came to merry London,
And near to that famous hall;
The lords and knights of merry London,
They did him a traitor call.
'A traitor! a traitor! a traitor!' he cried,
'A traitor! how can that be,
Unless it's for keeping five hundred men
For to fight for King Jamie?'
It's up yon steps there stands a good old man,
With a broad axe in his hand;
Says he, 'Now, my lord Derwentwater,
Thy life's at my command.'
'My life, my life, thou good old man,
My life I'll give to thee,
And the green coat of velvet on my back
Thou mayst take it for thy fee.
'There's fifty pounds and five in my right pocket,
Give that unto the poor;
There's twenty pounds and five in my left pocket,
Deal that from door to door.'
Then he laid his head on the fatal block,

  • * * * *

FEdit

THE king has written a broad letter,
And seald it with his hand,
And sent it on to Lord Arnwaters,
To read and understand.
Now he has sent it by no boy,
No boy, nor yet a slave,
But one of England's fairest knights,
The one that he would have.
When first he on the letter lookd,
Then he began to smile;
But ere he read it to an end,
The tears did trickling fall.
He calld upon his saddle-groom
To saddle his milk-white steed,
'For I unto London must go,
For me there is much need.'
Out then speaks his gay lady,
In child-bed where she lay:
'Make your will, make your will, my knight,
For fear ye rue the day.'
'I'll leave unto my eldest son
My houses and my lands;
I'll leave unto my youngest son
Full forty thousand pounds.
'I'll leave unto my gay lady,
And to my loving wife,
The second part of my estate,
To maintain a lady's life.'
He kissd her on the pillow soft,
In child-bed where she lay,
And bade farewell, neer to return,
Unto his lady gay.
He put his foot in the stirup,
His nose began to bleed;
The ring from 's finger burst in two
When he mounted on his steed.
He had not rode a mile or two
Till his horse stumbled down;
'A token good,' said Lord Arnwaters,
'I'll never reach London town.'
But when into Westminster Hall,
Amongst the nobles all,
'A traitor, a traitor, Lord Arnwaters,
A traitor,' they did him call.
'A traitor? a traitor how call ye me?
And a traitor how can I be
For keeping seven thousand valiant men
To fight for brave Jamie?'
Up then came a brave old man,
With a broad ax in his hand:
'Your life, your life, Lord Arnwaters,
Your life's at my command.'
'My life, my life, my brave old man,
My life I'll give to thee,
And the coat of green that's on my back
You shall have for your fee.
'There's fifty pounds in one pocket,
Pray deal't among the poor;
There's fifty and four in the other pocket,
Pray deal't from door to door.
'There's one thing more I have to say,
This day before I die;
To beg the lords and nobles all
To be kind to my lady.'

GEdit

THE king has wrote a long letter,
And sealed it with his han,
And he has sent it to my lord Dunwaters,
To read it if he can.
The very first line he lookit upon,
It made him to lauch and to smile;
The very next line he lookit upon,
The tear from his eye did fall.
'As for you, my auldest son,
My houses and my land;
And as for you, my youngest son,
Ten thousand pound in hand.
'As for you, my gay lady,
You being my wedded wife,
The third of my estate I will leave to you,
For to keep you in a lady's life.'

  • * * * *

HEdit

THE king he wrote a letter,
And seal d it with gold,
And sent it to Lor Derwentwater,
To read it if he could.
The first three lines he looked upon,
They made him to smile;
And the next three lines he looked upon
Made tears fall from his eyes.
O then bespoke his gay lady,
As she on a sick-bed lay:
'Make your will, my lord,
Before you go away.'
'O there is for my eldest son
My houses and my land,
And there is for my youngest son
Ten thousand pounds in hand.
'There is for you, my gay lady,
My true and lawful wife,
The third part of my whole estate,
To maintain you a lady's life.'
Then he called to his stable-groom
To bring him his gray steed;
For he must to London go,
The king had sent indeed.
When he put his foot in the stirrup,
To mount his grey steed,
His gold ring from his finger burst,
And his nose began to bleed.
He had not gone but half a mile
When it began to rain;
'Now this is a token,' his lordship said,
'That I shall not return again.'
When he unto London came,
A mob did at him rise,
And they call d him a traitor,
Made the tears fall from his eyes.
'A traitor, a traitor!' his lordship said,
. . . .
Is it for keeping eight score men
To fight for pretty Jimmee?'
O then bespoke a grave man,
With a broad axe in his hand:
'Hold your tongue, Lord Derwentwater,
Your life lies at my command.'
'My life, my life,' his lordship said,
'My life I will give to thee,
And the black velvet coat upon my back,
Take it for thy fee.'
Then he laid his head upon the block,
He did such courage show,
And asked the executioner
To cut it off at one blow.

IEdit

KING GEORGE he did a letter write,
And sealed it up with gold,
And sent it to Lord Derwentwater,
To read it if he could.
He sent his letter by no post,
He sent it by no page,
But sent it by a gallant knight
As eer did combat wage.
The first line that my lord lookd on
Struck him with strong surprise;
The second, more alarming still,
Made tears fall from his eyes.
He called up his stable-groom,
Saying, Saddle me well my steed,
For I must up to London go,
Of me there seems great need.
His lady, hearing what he said,
As she in child-bed lay,
Cry'd, My dear lord, pray make your will
Before you go away.
'I'll leave to thee, my eldest son,
My houses and my land;
I'll leave to thee, my younger son,
Ten thousand pounds in hand.
'I'll leave to thee, my lady gay,
My lawful married wife,
A third part of my whole estate,
To keep thee a lady's life.'
He knelt him down by her bed-side,
And kissed her lips so sweet;
The words that passd, alas! presaged
They never more should meet.
Again he calld his stable-groom,
Saying, Bring me out my steed,
For I must up to London go,
With instant haste and speed.
He took the reins into his hand,
Which shook with fear and dread;
The rings from off his fingers dropt,
His nose gushd out and bled.
He had but ridden miles two or three
When stumbling fell his steed;
'Ill omens these,' Derwentwater said,
'That I for James must bleed.'
As he rode up Westminster street,
In sight of the White Hall,
The lords and ladies of London town
A traitor they did him call.
'A traitor!' Lord Derwentwater said,
'A traitor how can I be,
Unless for keeping five hundred men
Fighting for King Jemmy?'
Then started forth a grave old man,
With a broad-mouthd axe in hand:
'Thy head, thy head, Lord Derwentwater,
Thy head's at my command.'
'My head, my head, thou grave old man,
My head I will give thee;
Here's a coat of velvet on my back
Will surely pay thy fee.
'But give me leave,' Derwentwater said,
'To speak words two or three;
Ye lords and ladies of London town,
Be kind to my lady.
'Here's a purse of fifty sterling pounds,
Pray give it to the poor;
Here's one of forty-five beside
You may dole from door to door.'
He laid his head upon the block,
The axe was sharp and strong,
. . . .
. . .

JEdit

The king has written a brod letter,
An sealled it our with gould,
An sent it to Lord Darnwater,
To read it if he could.
Whan Lord Darnwater saa the letter,
A light laughter lough he;
Bat or he read it to an end
The tear blinded his eye,
An sighan said him good Lord Darnwater,
I am near the day to dei.
Out spak his lady,
In child-bed wher she lay;
'My d[ea]r Lord Darnweter, what is to becom of me,
An my young famely?'
'I will leave my young famely
As well as I cane;
For I will leave to my lady
The third part of my land,
An I will live to my e[l]dest son,
The tua part of my land.
'An I will live to my eldest daught[er]
Five thousand pound of gold,
An I will live to my second daughter
Three thousand pound of gold.
'Ye saddel to me my littel gray horse,
That I had wont to ried;
. . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . .
The first stape Lord Darnwater staped,
He stumbled on a ston;
Said Lord Darnwater,
I feer I ill never come home.
When he came to fair London city,
An near unt[o] the toun,
'A trater! a trater!' said they,
'A trator wee see!'
'A trater?' said good Lord Darnwater,
'A trator I nier could be,
Unless it was bringen three hundred men
To fight for young Jamie.'
But when he came to Tour Hill
Befor him came a bold man,
. . . . . . . .
With a broad aix in his hand.
. . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . .
'Hear is five ginies of gold an my green velvet coat,
For to be your fee.'
'Ye nobels all,
Come hear to see me die,
An ye peopell of fair Sco[t]land,
Be kind to my family.'
Lord Darnuater was dumed to die, to die,
Good Lord Darnwater was dumed to die.