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86 ENGLISH SONG AND BALLAD MUSIC.
Think you on the solemn 'sizes past,
How suddenly in Oxfordshire I came, and made the judges all aghast,
And justices that did appear, And took both Bell and Barham away," And many a worthy man that day, And all their bodies brought to clay.
Think you that I dare not come to schools, Where all the cunning clerks be most;
Take I not away both wise and fools, And am I not in every coast ?
Assure yourselves no creature can
Make Death afraid of any man,
Or know my coming where or whan.
Where be they that make their leases strong, And join about them land to land,
Do you make account to live so long, To have the world come to your hand ?
No, foolish nowle, for all thy pence,
Full soon thy soul must needs go hence ;
Then who shall toyl for thy defence ?
And you that lean on your ladies' laps,
And lay your heads upon their knee,
' May think that you'll escape, perhaps,
And need not come to dance with me.' But no ! fair lords and ladies all, I will make you come when I do call, And find you a pipe to dance withall.
And you that are busy-headed fools,
To brabble for a pelting straw, Know you not that I have ready tools
To cut you from your crafty law ? And you that falsely buy and sell, And think you make your markets well, Must dance with Death wheresoe'er you dwell.
Pride must have a pretty sheet, I see,
For properly she loves to dance; Come away my wanton wench to me,
As gallantly as your eye doth glanee ; And all good fellows that flash and swash In reds and yellows of.revell dash, I warrant you need not be so rash.
For I can quickly cool you all,
How hot or stout soever you be, Both high and low, both great and small,
I nought do fear your high degree ; The ladies fair, the beldames old, The champion stout, the souldier bold, Must all with me to earthly mould.
Therefore take time while it is lent,
Prepare with me yourselves to dance ; Forget me not, your lives lament,
I come oft-times by sudden chance. Be ready, therefore,—watch and pray, That when my minstrel pipe doth play, You may to heaven dance the way.
This tune is called Wolsetfs Wild in Queen Elizabeth's Virginal Book, but in William Ballet's Lute Book15 it is called Wilson's Wile, and in Mksictfs Delight on the Cithren, 1666, Wilson's Wild. In the Bagford Collection of Ballads, Brit. Mus., there is one called " A proper newe sonet, declaring the Lamentation of Beccles, a town in Suffolk," &c, by T. D. (Thomas Deloney), to Wilson's Tune, and dated 1586, but it does not appear, from the metre, to have been intended for this air. Another "proper new ballad" to Wilson's Neio Tune is in the
' Anthony a Wood observes: "This solemn Assizementioned in the foregoing page, was kept in the Courthouse in the Castle-yard at Oxon, 4 Jul., 1577. The Judgewho were infected and dyed with the dampe, were SiRob. Bell, Baron of the Exchequer, and Sir Nich. Barham, Serjeant at Lawe." See Hist, et Antiq. Univ. Oxonlib. i. sub an. 1577. This verse, therefore, cannot havbeen in the ballad entered to Awdelay, in 1568-9.
b This highly interesting manuscript, which is in thlibrary of Trinity College, Dublin (D. I. 21), containslarge number of the popular tunes of the sixteenth century. " Fortune my foe," " Peg a Ramsey," " Bonnsweet Robin," "Calleno," " Lightie love Ladies," "Gree
:, besides "The Witches Dawnce," " The hunt is up," "The
;- Shaking of the Shetes," "The Quadran Pavan," "aHom-
;s pipe," " Robin Red docke," "Barrow Foster's Dreame,"
ir " Dowland's Lachrimae," " Lusty Gallant," The Black-
c- smith," "Rogero," "Turkeyloney," "Staynes Morris,"
i. " Sellenger's Rownde," " All flowers in brome," "Baloo,"
<t " Wigmore's Galliard," "Robin Hood is to the greenwood gone," &c, &c, are to be found in it. " Queen Mariees
le Dump" (in whose reign it was probably commenced)
a stands first in the book. The tunes are in lute tablature,
l- a-style of notation now obsolete, in which the letters of
ly the alphabet up to K are used to designate the strings and
tn frets of the instrument.
Sleeves," "Weladay" (all mentioned by Shakspeare),