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28 AMERICAN BALLADS AND SONGS
Fair Ellen she was a sweet young lady, Lord Thomas he loved her dear.
"Come riddle my riddle, dear mother," he said,
"Come riddle it all in one, Whether I shall marry fair Ellen or no
Or bring the brown girl home."
" The brown girl she has houses and land,
Fair Ellen she has none, So I advise you with my blessing
To bring the brown girl home."
Lord Thomas he dressed in scarlet red,
His merry men all were seen, And as he rode along the street,
They took him to be a king.
He rode till he came to fair Ellen's gate,
He knocked loud at the ring, And who was there but fair Ellen herself
To let Lord Thomas in?
"What news, what news?" fair Ellen said, "What news have you brought me?"
"I've come to invite you to my wedding, Most miserable news for thee."
"0 God forbid," fair Ellen she said, "That such a thing should be done,