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214 THE "WIFE OF USHER's WELL.
" Every time thou weepest for me, Thy heart makest sad, Then all within, my coffin stands full Of clotted hlood."
Rarely is the silence of the grave broken for purposes of consolation. Yet some cases there are, as in a Lithuanian ballad cited by Wackernagel, Altd. Blatter, i. 176, and a Spanish ballad noticed by Talvj, Versuch, p. 141. The present ballad seems to belong to the latter class rather than the former, but it is so imperfect that its true character cannot be determined.
Chambers maintains, we think erroneously, that this ballad is a fragment of The Clerks Twa Sons o' Ow-senford. See the second volume of this collection, page 63.
There lived a wife at Usher's Well,
And a wealthy wife was she, She had three stout and stalwart sons,
And sent them o'er the sea.
They hadna been a week from her, s
A week but barely ane, When word came to the carline wife,
That her three sons were gane.
They hadna been a week from her,
A week but barely three, »
When word came to the carline wife,
That her sons she'd never see.