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
And she shall find me soft and kind
And courteis every hour; Glad to fulfil all that she will
Command me, to my power: For had ye, lo, an hundred mo,
Yet would I be that one: For, in my mind, of all mankind
I love but you alone.
XXVII
He. Mine own dear love, I see the prove
That ye be kind and true; Of maid, of wife, in all my life,
The best that ever I knew. Be merry and glad; be no more sad ;
The case is changed new ; For it were ruth that for your truth
Ye should have cause to rue. Be not dismayed, whatsoever I said
To you when I began ; I will not to the green-wood go;
I am no banished man.
XXVIII
She. These tidings be more glad to me
Than to be made a queen, If I were sure they should endure;
But it is often seen When men will break promise they speak
The wordis on the splene. Ye shape some wile me to beguile,
And steal from me, I ween:
on the splene] in haste. 306
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