The English And Scottish Popular Ballads

by FRANCIS JAMES CHILD.

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156A: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156A.1	 QUEEN ELENOR was a sick woman,
	 And afraid that she should dye;
	 Then she sent for two fryars of France,
	 For to speak with them speedily.
156A.2	 The King calld down his nobles all,
	 By one, by two, and by three,
	 And sent away for Earl Martial,
	 For to speak with him speedily.
156A.3	 When that he came before the King,
	 He fell on his bended knee;
	 A boon, a boon! our gracious king,
	 That you sent so hastily.'
156A.4	 'I'll pawn my living and my lands,
	 My septer and my crown,
	 That whatever Queen Elenor says,
	 I will not write it down.
156A.5	 'Do you put on one fryar's coat,
	 And I'll put on another,
	 And we will to Queen Elenor go,
	 one fryar like another.'
156A.6	 Thus both attired then they go;
	 When they came to Whitehall,
	 The bells they did ring, and the quiristers sing,
	 And the torches did light them all.
156A.7	 When that they came before the Queen,
	 They fell on their bended knee:
	 'A boon, a boon! our gracious queen,
	 That you sent so hastily.'
156A.8	 'Are you two fryars of France?' she said,
	 'Which I suppose you be;
	 But if you are two English fryars,
	 Then hanged you shall be.'
156A.9	 'We are two fryars of France,' they said,
	 'As you suppose we be;
	 We have not been at any mass
	 Since we came from the sea.'
156A.10	 'The first vile thing that ere I did
	 I will to you unfold;
	 Earl Martial had my maidenhead,
	 Underneath this cloath of gold.'
156A.11	 at is a vile sin,' then said the king,
	 'God may forgive it thee!'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth Earl Martial,
	 With a heavy heart then spoke he.
156A.12	 'The next vile thing that ere I did
	 To you I'll  not deny;
	 I made a box of poyson strong,
	 To poyson King Henry.'
156A.13	 'That is a vile sin,' then said the King,
	 'God may forgive it thee!'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth Earl Martial,
	 'And I wish it so may be.'
156A.14	 'The next vile thing that ere I did
	 To you I will discover;
	 I poysoned Fair Rosamond,
	 All in fair Woodstock bower.'
156A.15	 'That is a vile sin,' then said the King,
	 'God may forgive it thee!'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth Earl Martial,
	 'And I wish it so may be.'
156A.16	 'Do you see yonders little boy,
	 A tossing of that ball?
	 That is Earl Martial['s] eldest son,
	 And I love him the best of all.
156A.17	 'Do you see yonders little boy,
	 A catching of the ball?
	 That is King Henry's son,' she said,
	 'And I love him the worst of all.
156A.18	 'His head is like unto a bull,
	 His nose is like a boar;'
	 'No matter for that,' King Henry said,
	 'I love him the better therefore.'
156A.19	 The King pulld of his fryar's coat,
	 And appeard all in red;
	 She shriekd and she cry'd, she wrong her hands,
	 And said she was betrayd.
156A.20	 The King lookd over his left shoulder,
	 And a grim look looked he,
	 And said,Earl Martial, but for my oath,
	 Then hanged shouldst thou be.

156B: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156B.1	 OUR queen's sick, an very sick,
	 She's sick an like to die;
	 She has sent for the friars of France,
	 To speak wi her speedilie.
156B.2	 'I'll put on a friar's robe,
	 An ye'll put on anither,
	 An we'll go to Madam the Queen,
	 Like friars bath thegither.'
156B.3	 'God forbid,' said Earl Marishall,
	 'That ever the like shud be,
	 That I beguile Madam the Queen!
	 I wad be hangit hie.'
156B.4	 The King pat on a friar's robe,
	 Earl Marishall on anither;
	 They're on to the Queen,
	 Like friars baith thegither.
156B.5	 'Gin ye be the friars of France,
	 As I trust well ye be-+--+-
	 But an ye be ony ither men,
	 Ye sall be hangit hie.'
156B.6	 The King he turnd him roun,
	 An by his troth sware he,
	 We hae na sung messe
	 Sin we came frae the sea.
156B.7	 'The first sin ever I did,
	 An a very great sin 'twas tee,
	 I gae my maidenhead to Earl Marishall,
	 Under the greenwood tree.'
156B.8	 RR'Trrhat was a sin, an a very great sin,
	 But pardond it may be;'
	 'Wi mendiment,' said Earl Marishall,
	 But a heavy heart had he.
156B.9	 'The next sin ever I did,
	 An a very great sin 'twas tee,
	 I poisened Lady Rosamond,
	 An the King's darling was she.'
156B.10	 'That was a sin, an a very great sin,
	 But pardond it may be;'
	 'Wi mendiment,' said King Henry,
	 But a heavy heart had he.
156B.11	 'The next sin ever I did,
	 An a very great sin 'twas tee,
	 I keepit poison in my bosom seven years,
	 To poison him King Henrie.'
156B.12	 'That was a sin, an a very great sin,
	 But pardond it may be;'
	 'Wi mendiment,' said King Henry,
	 But a heavy heart had he.
156B.13	 'O see na ye yon bonny boys,
	 As they play at the ba?
	 An see na ye Lord Marishal's son?
	 I lee him best of a'.
156B.14	 'But see na ye King Henry's son?
	 He's headit like a bull, and backit like a boar,
	 I like him warst awa:'
	 'And by my sooth,' says him King Henry,
	 'I like him best o the twa.'
156B.15	 The King he turned him roun,
	 Pat on the coat o goud,
	 . . . .
	 The Queen turnd the King to behold.
156B.16	 . . . .
	 . . . .
	 'Gin I hadna sworn by the crown and sceptre roun,
	 Earl Marishal sud been gart die.'

156C: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156C.1	 THE Queen's faen sick, and very, very sick,
	 Sick, and going to die,
	 And she's sent for twa friars of France,
	 To speak with her speedilie.
156C.2	 The King he said to the Earl Marischal,
	 To the Earl Marischal said he,
	 The Queen she wants twa friars frae France,
	 To speak with her presentlie.
156C.3	 Will ye put on a friar's coat,
	 And I'll put on another,
	 And we'll go in before the Queen,
	 Like friars both together.
156C.4	 'But O forbid,' said the Earl Marischal,
	 'That I this deed should dee!
	 For if I beguile Eleanor our queen,
	 She will gar hang me hie.'
156C.5	 The King he turned him round about,
	 An angry man was he;
	 He's sworn by his sceptre and his sword
	 Earl Marischal should not die.
156C.6	 The King has put on a friar's coat,
	 Earl Marischal on another,
	 And they went in before the Queen,
	 Like friars both together.
156C.7	 'O, if ye be twa friars of France,
	 Ye're dearly welcome to me;
	 But if ye be twa London friars,
	 I will gar hang you hie.'
156C.8	 'Twa friars of France, twa friars of France,
	 Twa friars of France are we,
	 And we vow we never spoke to a man
	 Till we spake to Your Majesty.'
156C.9	 'The first great sin that eer I did,
	 And I'll tell you it presentlie,
	 Earl Marischal got my maidenhead,
	 When coming oer the sea.'
156C.10	 'That was a sin, and a very great sin,
	 But pardoned it may be;'
	 'All that with amendment,' said Earl Marischal,
	 But a quacking heart had he.
156C.11	 'The next great sin that eer I did,
	 I'll tell you it presentlie;
	 I carried a box seven years in my breast,
	 To poison King Henrie.'
156C.12	 'O that was a sin, and a very great sin,
	 But pardoned it may be;'
	 'All that with amendment,' said Earl Marischal,
	 But a quacking heart had he.
156C.13	 'The next great sin that eer I did,
	 I'll tell you it presentlie;
	 I poisoned the Lady Rosamond,
	 And a very good woman was she.
156C.14	 'See ye not yon twa bonny boys,
	 As they play at the ba?
	 The eldest of them is Marischal's son,
	 And I love him best of a';
	 The youngest of them is Henrie's son,
	 And I love him none at a'
156C.15	 'For he is headed like a bull, a bull,
	 He is backed like a boar;'
	 'Then by my sooth,' King Henrie said,
	 'I love him the better therefor.'
156C.16	 The King has cast off his friar's coat,
	 Put on a coat of gold;
	 The Queen she's turned her face about,
	 She could not's face behold.
156C.17	 The King then said to Earl Marischal,
	 To the Earl Marischal said he,
	 Were it not for my sceptre and sword,
	 Earl Marischall, ye should die.

156D: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156D.1	 THE queen of England she has fallen sick,
	 Sore sick, and like to die;
	 And she has sent for twa French priests,
	 To bear her companie.
156D.2	 The King he has got word o this,
	 And an angry man was he;
	 And he is on to the Earl-a-Marshall,
	 As fast as he can gae.
156D.3	 'Now you'll put on a priest's robe,
	 And I'll put on anither,
	 And we will on unto the Queen,
	 Like twa French priests thegither.'
156D.4	 'No indeed!' said the Earl-a-Marshall,
	 'That winna I do for thee,
	 Except ye swear by your sceptre and crown
	 Ye'll do me nae injurie.'
156D.5	 The King has sworn by his sceptre and crown
	 He'll do him nae injurie,
	 And they are on unto the Queen,
	 As fast as they can gae.
156D.6	 'O, if that ye be twa French priests,
	 Ye're welcome unto me;
	 But if ye be twa Scottish lords,
	 High hanged ye shall be.
156D.7	 'The first sin that I did sin,
	 And that to you I'll tell,
	 I sleeped wi the Earl-a-Marshall,
	 Beneath a silken bell.
156D.8	 'And wasna that a sin, and a very great sin?
	 And I pray ye pardon me;'
	 'Amen, and amen!' said the Earl-a-Marshall,
	 And a wearied man was he.
156D.9	 'The neist sin that I did sin,
	 And that to you I'll tell,
	 I keeped the poison seven years in my bosom,
	 To poison the King himsel.
156D.10	 'And wasna that a sin, and a very great sin?
	 And I pray ye pardon me;'
	 'Amen, and amen!' said the Earl-a-Marshall,
	 And a wearied man was he.
156D.11	 'O see ye there my seven sons,
	 A' playing at the ba?
	 There's but ane o them the King's himsel,
	 And I like him warst of a'.
156D.12	 'He's high-backed, and low-breasted,
	 And he is bald withal;'
	 'And by my deed,' and says the King,
	 'I like him best mysel!
156D.13	 'O wae betide ye, Earl-a-Marshall,
	 And an ill death may ye die!
	 For if I hadna sworn by my sceptre and crown,
	 High hanged ye should be.'

156E: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156E.1	 THE Queen fell sick, and very, very sick,
	 She was sick, and like to dee,
	 And she sent for a friar oure frae France,
	 Her confessour to be.
156E.2	 King Henry, when he heard o that,
	 An angry man was he,
	 And he sent to the Earl Marshall,
	 Attendance for to gie.
156E.3	 'The Quen is sick,' King Henry cried,
	 'And wants to be beshriven;
	 She has sent for a friar oure frae France,
	 By the rude, he were better in heaven!
156E.4	 'But tak you a friar's guise,
	 The voice and gesture feign,
	 And when she has the pardon crav'd,
	 Respond to her, Amen!
156E.5	 'And I will be a prelate old,
	 And sit in a corner dark,
	 To hear the adventures of my spouse,
	 My spouse, and her haly spark.'
156E.6	 'My liege, my liege, how can I betray
	 My mistress and my queen?
	 O swear by the rude that no damage
	 From this shall be gotten or gien!'
156E.7	 'I swear by the rude,' quoth King Henry,
	 'No damage shall be gotten or gien;
	 Come, let us spare no cure nor care
	 For the conscience o the Queen.'
	 * * * * *
156E.8	 'O fathers, O fathers, I'm very,very sick,
	 I'm sick, and like to dee;
	 Some ghostly comfort to my poor soul
	 O tell if ye can gie!'
156E.9	 'Confess, confess,' Earl Marshall cried,
	 'And you shall pardoned be;'
	 'Confess, confess,' the King replied,
	 'And we shall comfort gie.'
156E.10	 'Oh, how shall I tell the sorry, sorry tale!
	 How can the tale be told!
	 I playd the harlot wi the Earl Marshall,
	 Beneath yon cloth of gold.
156E.11	 'Oh, wasna that a sin, and a very great sin?
	 But I hope it will pardoned be;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth the Earl Marshall,
	 And a very feart heart had he.
156E.12	 'O down i the forest, in a bower,
	 Beyond yon dark oak-tree,
	 I drew a penknife frae my pocket
	 To kill King Henerie.
156E.13	 ??	 , wasna that a sin, and a very great sin?
	 But I hope it will pardoned be;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth the Earl Marshall,
	 And a very feart heart had he.
156E.14	 'O do you see yon pretty little boy,
	 That's playing at the ba?
	 He is the Earl Marshall's only son,
	 And I loved him best of a'.
156E.15	 'Oh, wasna that a sin, and a very great sin?
	 But I hope it will pardoned be;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth the Earl Marshall,
	 And a very feart heart had he.
156E.16	 'And do you see yon pretty little girl,
	 That's a' beclad in green?
	 She's a friar's daughter, oure in France,
	 And I hoped to see her a queen.
156E.17	 'Oh, wasna that a sin, and a very great sin?
	 But I hope it will pardoned be;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' quoth the Earl Marshall,
	 And a feart heart still had he.
156E.18	 'O do you see yon other little boy,
	 That's playing at the ba?
	 He is King Henry's only son,
	 And I like him warst of a'.
156E.19	 'He's headed like a buck,' she said,
	 'And backed like a bear;'
	 'Amen!' quoth the King, in the King's ain voice,
	 'He shall be my only heir.'
156E.20	 The King lookd over his left shoulder,
	 An angry man was he:
	 'An it werna for the oath I sware,
	 Earl Marshall, thou shouldst dee.'

156F: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156F.1	 QUEENE ELEANOR was a sick woman,
	 And sick just like to die,
	 And she has sent for two fryars of France,
	 To come to her speedilie.
	 And she has sent, etc.
156F.2	 The King called downe his nobles all,
	 By one, by two, by three:
	 'Earl Marshall, I'll go shrive the Queene,
	 And thou shalt wend with mee.'
156F.3	 'A boone, a boone!' quoth Earl Marshall,
	 And fell on his bended knee,
	 'That whatsoever the Queene may say,
	 No harm thereof may bee.'
156F.4	 'O you'll put on a gray-friar's gowne,
	 And I'll put on another,
	 And we will away to fair London town,
	 Like friars both together.'
156F.5	 'O no, O no, my liege, my king,
	 Such things can never bee;
	 For if the Queene hears word of this,
	 Hanged she'll cause me to bee.'
156F.6	 'I swear by the sun, I swear by the moon,
	 And by the stars so hie,
	 And by my sceptre and my crowne,
	 The Earl Marshall shall not die.'
156F.7	 The King's put on a gray-friar's gowne,
	 The Earl Marshall's put on another,
	 And they are away to fair London towne,
	 Like fryars both together.
156F.8	 When that they came to fair London towne,
	 And came into Whitehall,
	 The bells did ring, and the quiristers sing,
	 And the torches did light them all.
156F.9	 And when they came before the Queene,
	 They kneeled down on their knee:
	 'What matter, what matter, our gracious queene,
	 You've sent so speedilie?'
156F.10	 'O, if you are two fryars of France,
	 It's you that I wished to see;
	 But if you are two English lords,
	 You shall hang on the gallowes-tree.'
156F.11	 'O we are not two English lords,
	 But two fryars of France we bee,
	 And we sang the Song of Solomon,
	 As we came over the sea.'
156F.12	 'Oh, the first vile sin I did commit
	 Tell it I will to thee;
	 I fell in love with the Earl Marshall,
	 As he brought me over the sea.'
156F.13	 'Oh, that was a great sin,' quoth the King,
	 'But pardond it must bee;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' said the Earl Marshall,
	 With a heavie heart spake hee.
156F.14	 'Oh, the next sin that I did commit
	 I will to you unfolde;
	 Earl Marshall had my virgin dower,
	 Beneath this cloth of golde.'
156F.15	 'Oh, that was a vile sin,' said the King,
	 'May God forgive it thee!'
	 'Amen! Amen!' groaned the Earl Marshall,
	 And a very frightened man was hee.
156F.16	 'Oh, the next sin that I did commit
	 Tell it I will to thee;
	 I poisoned a lady of noble blood,
	 For the sake of King Henrie.'
156F.17	 'Oh, that was a great sin,' said the King,
	 'But pardoned it shall bee;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' said the Earl Marshall,
	 And still a frightened man was he.
156F.18	 'Oh, the next sin that ever I did
	 Tell it I will to thee;
	 I have kept strong poison this seven long years,
	 To poison King Henrie.'
156F.19	 'Oh, that was a great sin,' said the King,
	 'But pardoned it must bee;'
	 'Amen! Amen!' said the Earl Marshall,
	 And still a frightened man was hee.
156F.20	 'O don't you see two little boys,
	 Playing at the football?
	 O yonder is the Earl Marshall's son,
	 And I like him best of all.
156F.21	 'O don't you see yon other little boy,
	 Playing at the football?
	 O that one is King Henrie's son,
	 And I like him worst of all.
156F.22	 'His head is like a black bull's head,
	 His feet are like a bear;'
	 'What matter! what matter!' cried the King,
	 'He's my son, and my only heir.'
156F.23	 The King plucked off his fryar's gowne,
	 And stood in his scarlet so red;
	 The Queen she turned herself in bed,
	 And cryed that she was betrayde.
156F.24	 The King lookt oer his left shoulder,
	 And a grim look looked he;
	 'Earl Marshall,' he said, 'But for my oath,
	 Thou hadst swung on the gallowes-tree.'

156[G]: Queen Eleanor's Confession


156[G].1	The queen of England she is seek,
	 And seek and like to dee;
	 She has sent for friers out of France,
	 To bespeek hir speed[i]ly.
156[G.2]	The king has cald on his merrymen,
	 By thirtys and by threes;
	 Earl Marshall should have been the formest man,
	 But the very last man was he.
156[G.3]	'The queen of England s[h]e is seek,
	 And seek and like to dee,
	 And she has sent for friers out of France,
	 To bespeek hir speedyly.
156[G.4]	'But I will put on a frier's weeg,
	 And ye'l put on another,
	 And we'll away to Quenn Helen gaits,
	 Like friers both together.'
156[G.5]	'O no, no,' says Earl Marshall,
	 'For this it must not be;
	 For if the queen get word of that,
	 High hanged I will be.'
156[G.6]	'But I will swear by my septer and crown,
	 And by the seas so free,
	 I will swear by my septer and crown,
	 Earl Marshall, thow's no dee.'
156[G.7]	So he has put on a frier's wig,
	 And the king has put on another,
	 And they are away to Queen Helen gaits,
	 Like friers both together.
156[G.8]	When they came to Queen Helen gaits,
	 They tirled at the pin;
	 There was non so ready as the queene herself
	 To open and let them in.
156[G.9]	'O are you two Scottish dogs?-+-
	 And hanged you shall be-+-
	 Or are [you] friers come out of France,
	 To bespeek me speedily?'
156[G.10]	'We are not two Scottish dogs,
	 Nor hanged we shall be;
	 For we have not spoken a wrong word
	 Since we came over the sea.'
156[G.11]	'Well then, the very first that ever I sind
	 I freely confess to thee;
	 Earl Marshall took my maidenhead
	 Below yon greenwood tree.'
156[G.12]	'That is a sin, and very great sin,
	 But the Pope will pardon thee;'
	 'Amene, Amene,' says Earl Marshall,
	 But a feert, feert heart had he.
156[G.13]	'The very next sin that ever I sind
	 I freely confess to thee;
	 I had [poisen] seven years in  my breast
	 To poisen King Hendry.'
156[G.14]	'That is a sin, and very great sin,
	 But the Pope forgiveth thee;'
	 'Amene, Amene,' says Earl Marshall,
	 But a feert, feert heart had he.
156[G.15]	'The very next sin that ever I sind
	 I freely confess to thee;
	 I poisened one of my court's ladies,
	 Was far more fairer than me.'
156[G.16]	'That is a sin, and a very great sin,
	 But the Pope forgiveth thee;'
	 'Amene, Amene,' says Earl Marshall,
	 But a feert, feert heart had he.
156[G.17]	'Do you see yon bony boys,
	 Playing at the baw?
	 The oldest of them is Earl Marshall's,
	 And I like him best of all.'
156[G.18]	'That is a sin, and very great sin,
	 But the Pope forgiveth thee;'
	 'Amene, Amene,' says Earl Marshall,
	 But a feert, feert heart had he.
156[G.19]	'Do ye see two bony [boys],
	 Playing at the baw?
	 The youngest of them is King Hendry's,
	 And I like him worst of all.
156[G.20]	'Because he is headed like a bull,
	 And his nose is like a boar;'
	 'What is the matter?' says King Henry,
	 'For he shall be my heir.'
156[G.21]	Now he put off his frier's wig,
	 And drest himself [in] red;
	 She wrung hir hands, and tore hir hair,
	 And s[w]ore she was betraid.
156[G.22]	'Had I not sworn by my septer and crown,
	 And by the seas so free,
	 Had I not sworn by my septer and crown,
	 Earl Marshall, thowst have died.'

Next: 157. Gude Wallace






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