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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Thus Dickie has fell'd fair Johnie Armstrong, The prettiest man in the south country :
' Gramercy ! ' then 'gan Dickie say,
' I had but twa horse, thou hast made me three! '
He 's ta'en the laird's jack afF Johnie's back,
The twa-handed sword that hung low by his thie ;
He 's ta'en the steel cap afF his head— ' Johnie, I'll tell that I met wi' thee.'
When Johnie waken'd out o' his dream,
I wat a dreirie man was he: ' And is thou gane ? Now, Dickie, than
The shame and dule is left wi' me.
' And is thou gane ? Now, Dickie, than
The deil gae in thy companie! For if I should live these hundred years,
I ne'er shall fight wi' a fule after thee.'
Then Dickie 's come hame to the gude Lord Scroope,
E'en as fast as he might hie; ' Now, Dickie, I'll neither eat nor drink,
Till hie hanged that thou shalt be.'—
' The shame speed the liars, my lord !' quo' Dickie;
' This was na the promise ye made to me i For I'd ne'er gang to Liddesdale to steal,
Had I not got my leave frae thee.'—
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