Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 1 of 8 from 1860 edition

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This beautiful tale is transferred to these pages from Mr. Laing's Select Remains of the Ancient Popular Poetry of Scotland. The two " fytts " of prophecies which accompany it in the manuscripts, are omitted here, as being probably the work of another, and an inferior, hand. From the exordium by which the story is introduced, it might be concluded that the author' was an Englishman. Indeed, all the poems and pro­phecies attributed to Thomas the Rhimer which re­main to us, are preserved in English manuscripts and an English dress; but, in the judgment of Mr. Jamieson, the internal evidence still almost amounts to proof that the romance itself was of Scottish origin, although no indubitably Scottish copy is now known to be in ex­istence.
The hero of this legend is believed to have lived through nearly the whole of the 13th century. He derived his territorial appellation from the village of Erceldoune, in the county of Berwick, lying on the river Leader, about two miles above its junction with the Tweed. The Huntly bank on which the meeting of Thomas with the Queen of Fairy took place, is situated, according to Mr. Laing, on one of the Eldoun hills, but the same distinction is claimed for another place of like name, which, together with an adjoining ravine, called from time immemorial the Rymer's Glen,