Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 3 of 8 from 1860 edition -online book

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138                      HUGH OP LINCOLN.
curious information on the imputed cruelties of the Jews, Michel's Hugues de Lincoln, and Hume's Sir Hugh of Lincoln- The whole subject is critically examined in the London Athenozum, for Dec. 15, 1849. " The text of the following edition has been given verbatim, as the editor took it down from Mrs. Brown's recitation ; and in it two circumstances are preserved, which are neither to be found in any of the former editions, nor in any of the chronicles in which the transaction is recorded ; but which are perfectly in the character of those times, and tend to enhance the miracles to which the discovery is attributed. The first of these is, that, in order that the whole of this infamous sacrifice might be of a piece, and every pos­sible outrage shown to Christianity, the Jews threw the child's body into a well dedicated to the Virgin Mary; and tradition says, that it was 'through the might of Our Ladie,' that the dead body was permitted to speak, and to reveal the horrid story to the discon­solate mother. The other is, the voluntary ringing of the bells, &c, at his funeral. The sound of conse­crated bells was supposed to have a powerful effect in driving away evil spirits, appeasing storms, &c, and they were believed to be inspired with sentiments and perceptions which were often manifested in a very "miraculous manner." Jamieson's Popular Ballads, I 139-156.
Four and twenty bonny boys
"Were playing at the ba'; And by it came him, sweet Sir Hugh,
And he play'd o'er them a'.