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THE HUNTING OF THE CHEVIOT. 29
saving of the " old song of Percy and Douglas"— that it moved his heart more than a trumpet—exclusively of Chevy Chase. There is no question which ballad would stand higher in the estimation of the gentle knight, but the terms by which the war-song he admired is described are of course equally applicable to The Battle of Otterbourne. By the way we may remark that if we do understand Sidney to have meant Chevy Chase, then, whatever opinion writers of our day may have of its antiquity, and however probable it may seem to them that Chevy Chase was written by a contemporary of Sir Philip, it appeared to the. author of the Defence of Poetry to be " evil apparelled in the dust and cobweb of an uncivil age "!
THE FIRST FIT.
The Perse owt off Northombarlande,
And a vowe to God mayd he, That he wold hunte in the mountayns
Off Chyviat within days thre, In the mauger of doughte Dogles, »
And all that ever with him be.
The fattiste hartes in all Cheviat
He sayd he wold kill, and cary them away : " Be my feth," sayd the dougheti Doglas agayn,
" I wyll let that hontyng yf that I may." 10