Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 7 of 8 from 1860 edition - online book

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THE BATTLE OF CORICHIE.              211
vassals and posted himself at a place called the Fair Bank, or Coriehie, near Aberdeen. Murray having increased his forces by seven or eight hundred of the Forbeses and Leslies, who, although attached to the Huntly faction, dared not disobey the Queen's sum­mons, marched to the attack. As little confidence could be placed in the good faith of the northern recruits, he ordered them to begin the battle. In obedience to this command, they advanced against the enemy, but instantly recoiled and retreated in a pretended panic on Murray's reserve, followed by the Gordons in disorder. The Queen's party received both the flying and the pursuers with an impenetrable front of lances. Huntly was repulsed, and the other northern clans, seeing how the victory was going, turned their swords upon their friends. Many of the Gordons were slain, and the Earl, who was old and fat, being thrown from his horse, was smothered in the retreat. His sons John and Adam were taken prisoners, and the former was put to death at Aber­deen the day after the battle.
The following ballad, it will be perceived, is utterly at variance with the facts of history. It was first printed in Evans's Old Ballads, and is said to be the composition of one Forbes, schoolmaster at Mary-Culter, on Dee-side. The dialect is broad Aber­deen.
Murn ye heighlands, and murn ye leighlands,
I trow ye hae meikle need; For thi bonny burn o' Corichie
His run this day wi' bleid.







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