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 then, for fear of further strife, He took Sweet William for his wife: The like before was never seen, A serving-man to be a queen.
167. The Simple Ploughboy
O THE Ploughboy was a-ploughing With his horses on the plain, And was singing of a song as on went he: ' Since that I have fall'n in love, If the parents disapprove,
'Tis the first thing that will send me to the sea.'
When the parents came to know That their daughter loved him so,
Then they sent a gang, and press'd him for the sea. And they made of him a tar, To be slain in cruel war ;
Of the simple Ploughboy singing on the lea.
The maiden sore did grieve, And without a word of leave,
From her father's house she fled secretlie, In male attire dress'd, With a star upon her breast,
All to seek her simple Ploughboy on the sea.
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