Hay Marshall was a gentleman as ever lived on earth
He courted Rosie Anderson, a lady into Perth
He courted her, he married her, made her his lawful wife
And well I'd say upon that day, he loved her as his life
There was an assembly into Perth, Rosie she was there
Lord Elgin danced with her that night and did her heart ensnare
Lord Elgin danced with her that night. He conveyed her home
Hay Marshall he came rushing in just as he set her down
"I'm all into surprise," he said, "I'm all into surprise
To see you kiss my wedded wife before my very eyes"
"I have not kissed your wedded wife," Lord Elgin he did say
"I only brought her safely home from the dangers of the way"
"Oh, had she not a maid," he says, "or had she not a guide
Or had she not a candlelight, or why was she afraid"
Young Betsy she was called upon, the quarrel for to face
"I would have brought my lady home, but Lord Elgin took my place"
"Although you be a lord," he said, "And I but a provost's son
I'll make you smart for this, my lord, although you think it fun"
He's ta'en his Rosie by the hand and led her through the room
Says, "I'll send you to fair London town till all this speech
She had not been in London town a month but barely one
When word is come to Hay Marshall, his Rosie's played the loon
"Oh woe be to your roses red, that ever I loved you
To go and leave your own true love and tread the beds of rue"
"My meat I cannot eat," he said, "My clothes I cannot wear
For thinking on my Rosie that once I held so dear"
Hay Marshall's gone to London town with money in his purse
He's gone to find some witnesses, his Rosie to divorce
Hay Marshall had twenty witnesses, Rosie had but two
"Oh woe is me," cried Rosie, "Alas, what shall I do
If 'twere to do what's done," she said, "if 'twere to do that's
Hay Marshall's face I would adore, Lord Elgin's I would shun"
"But spring is coming on," she said, "some regiment will be here
Perhaps I'll find some officer, my broken heart to cheer"
recorded by Jean Redpath