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194 ROBIN HOOD AND THE BEGGAK.
" Tell us, dear master," said his men, " How with you stands the case ? "
Good Eobin sigh'd e'er he began To tell of his disgrace. sc
" I have been watchman in this wood
Near hand this forty year, Yet I was never so hard bestead
As you have found me here.
" A beggar with a clouted cloak, 23
In whom I fear'd no ill, Hath with his pike-staff claw'd my back,
I fear 'twill never be well.
See, where he goes o'er yonder hill,
With hat upon his head; 30
If e'er you lov'd your master well, Go now revenge this deed.
" And bring him back again to me,
If it lie in your might, That I may see, before I die, s«
Him punisht in my sight.
" And if you may not bring him back,
Let him not go loose on; For to us all it were great shame
If he escap't again." «