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13 The other said it was not right, so here they fell to strife; With one another they did fight about the children's life. And he that was of mildest mood did slay the other there Within an unfrequented wood while babes did quake with fear.
14 He took the children by the hand while tears stood in their eyes And bade them go along with him and told them not to cry. And two long miles he them did lead while they for food
complained, "Stay here," quoth he, Til bring some bread when I do come again."
15 These pretty babes with hand in hand went wandering up and
down, But never more they saw the man approaching from the town. Their pretty lips with blackberries were all besmeared and dyed, And when they saw the darksome night they sat them down
16 And now with heavy wrath of God upon their uncle fell; Yea, fearful friends did haunt his house, his conscience felt a hell; His barns were fired, his goods consumed, his lands were barren
made; His cattle died within the field, and nothing with him stayed.
17 And in a voyage to Portugal two of his sons did die, And, to conclude, himself was brought to extreme misery;
He pawned and mortgaged all his land ere seven years came
about, And now at length this wicked act did by this means come out:
18 The fellow that did take in hand these children for to kill Was for a robbery judged to die, as was God's holy will; He did confess the very act the which is here expressed; The uncle died, while he for debt in prison long did rest.
19 All you who be executors and overseers seek
For children that are fatherless and infants mild and meek, Take you example by this thing and yield to each his right, Lest God with his like misery bring your wicked deed requite.