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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' And he has broken my bonny coffers, That was well bandit wi' aiken ban' ;
And he has stolen my rich jewels; I wot he has them every ane.'
Then out it spak' her Lady Elspat
As she sat by the Lord Justice' knee:
' Now ye hae tauld your tale, mither,
I pray, Lord Justice, you'll now hear me.
' He hasna broken her bonny castle,
That was well biggit wi' lime and stane ;
Nor has he stolen her rich jewels, For I wot she has them every one.
x ' But tho' he was my first true love,
And tho' I had sworn to be his bride, 'Cause he had not a great estate
She would this way our loves divide.'
Then out it spak' the Lord Justice (I wot the tear was in his e'e) :
' I see nae fault in this young man; Sae loose his bands, and set him free.
' Tak' back your love now, Lady Elspat, And my best blessing you baith upon!
For gin he be your first true love, He is my eldest sister's son.
bandit] bound. aiken] oaken.
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