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ANCIENT PORTUGUESE BALLADS. 271
From neither love nor death Can mortal man be free.
Ballads on the subject of the slaying a would-be ravisher with his own arms are common in popular poetry, and striking examples are found in Scotch, French, and Spanish. There are several variants in Portuguese of The Pilgrim Maid, but the best is that furnished by Almeida Garrett.
THE PILGRIM MAID.
Adown the lofty mountain green
The pilgrim maid descends : No fairer and no purer maid
To sacred station wends.
Her long robe catches in the thorns,
That strew the grassy mat, Her lovely eyes are downward cast,
And hidden by her hat.
A knight pursues her footsteps fast,
With evil in his eyes, But he can hardly reach her side,
Though his best speed he tries.
At last he's caught her, as she stops
Beside the olive tree, That at the holy hermit's door
Stands fair and tall to see.