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194 JANE SHORE.
The story and character of Jane Shore can best be read in a charmingly written passage of Sir Thomas More's History of Edward Fifth, quoted in Percy's Reliques, ii. 268. The ballad adheres to matter of fact with a fidelity very uncommon. In Drayton's England's Heroioal Epistles is one from Jane Shore to King Edward, and in the notes he thus gives her portrait: "Her stature was meane, her haire of a dark yellow, her face round and full, her eye gray, delicate harmony being betwixt each part's proportion, and each proportion's colour, her body fat, white, and smooth, her countenance cheerfull and like to her condition." (Cited by Percy.)
This ballad is taken from the Collection of 1723, vol. i. p. 145. The full title is: The Woeful Lamentation of Jane Shore, a Goldsmith's Wife in London, sometime King Edward the Fourth's Concubine. The same version, with trifling variations, is found in Percy's Reliques, ii. 274, and Ritson's Ancient Songs, ii. 128. In the Garland of Good Will there is another piece on the same subject, (Percy Society, vol. xxx. p. 9, The Lamentation of Shore's Wife,) and in the Collection of 1723, a burlesque song, called King Edward and Jane Shore (vol. i. p. 153).
If Rosamond, that was so fair, Had cause her sorrow to declare, Then let Jane Shore with sorrow sing, That was beloved of a king.