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
It is said of old, Soon hot, soon co!d$
And so is a woman : Wherefore I to the wood will go,
Alone, a banished man.
XXII
She. If ye take heed, it is no need
Such words to say to me ; For oft ye prayed, and long assayed,
Or I loved you, parde : And though that I of ancestry
A baron's daughter be, Yet have you proved how I you loved,
A squire of low degree ; And ever shall, whatso befall,
To die therefore anone ; For, in my mind, of all mankind
I love but you alone.
XXIII
He. A baron's child to be beguiled,
It were a cursed deed ! To be felaw with an outlawó
Almighty God forbede ! Yet better were the poor squyere
Alone to forest yede Than ye shall say another day
That by my cursed rede Ye were betrayed. Wherefore, good maid,
The best rede that I can, Is, that I to the green-wood go,
Alone, a banished man.
yede] went.
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