Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 3 of 8 from 1860 edition -online book

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" This ballad (given from an old black-letter copy, with some corrections) was popular in the time of Queen Elizabeth, being usually printed with her pic­ture before it, as Hearne informs us in his preface to Gul. Neubrig, Hist. Oxon, 1719, 8vo. vol. i. p. lxx. It is quoted in Fletcher's comedy of the Pilgrim, act 4, sc. 2." Percy's Reliques, iii. 114.
The Scottish ballad corresponding to Percy's has been printed by Kinloch, p. 25. Besides this, how­ever, there are three other Scottish versions, superior to the English in every respect, and much longer. They are Earl Richard, Motherwell, p. 377; (also in Buchan's Ballads of the North of Scotland, ii. 81;) a ballad with the same title in Kinloch's collection, p. 15; and Earl Lithgow, Buchan, ii. 91. In all these, the futile attempts of the knight to escape marrying the lady, and the devices by which she aggravates his reluctance to enter into the match, are managed with no little humour. We give Motherwell's edition a place next to Percy's, and refer the reader for Kinloch's to the Appendix.