The Oxford Book of Ballads - online book

A Selection Of The Best English Lyric Ballads Chosen & Edited by Arthur Quiller-Couch

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THE NUT-BROWN MAID
in He. Then between us let us discuss
What was all the rhanere Between them two : we will also
Tell all the pain in fere That she was in. Now I begin,
So that ye me answere : Wherefore all ye that present be,
I pray you, give an ear. I am the Knight. I come by night*
As secret as I can, Saying, Alas ! thus standeth the case,
I am a banished man.
IV She. And I your will for to fulfl
In this will not refuse ; Trusting to show, in wordes few,
That men have an ill use To their own shamewomen to blame,
And causeless them accuse. Therefore to you I answer now,
All women to excuse : Mine own heart dear, with you what cheer \
I pray you, tell anone ; For, in my mind, of all mankind
I love but you alone.
v He. It standeth so: a deed is do
Whereof great harm shall grow: My destiny is for to die A shameful death, I trow ;
in fere] in company, together.
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