The Oxford Book of Ballads - online book

A Selection Of The Best English Lyric Ballads Chosen & Edited by Arthur Quiller-Couch

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' What art thou better then I, Sir King ?
Tell me if that thou can ! What art thou better then I, Sir King,
Now we be but man to man ? '
The King smote angerly at Copland,
Angerly in that stonde ; Then Copland was a bold yeaman,
And bore the King to the ground.
He sett the King on a palfrey,
Himselfe upon a steede ; He tooke him by the bridle-rayne,
Towards London he can him lead.
And when to London that he came,
The King from Ffrance was come home,
And there unto the King of Scotts He sayd these words anon.—
' How like you my shepards and my millers ?
My priests with shaven crownes ?'— ' By my fayth, they are the sorest fighters
That ever I mett on the ground.
' There was never a yeaman in merry England But was worth a Scottish knight.'—
' Ay, by my troth,' said King Edward, and laughe, ' For you fought all against the right.'
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