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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140.          Archie of Carofield
AS I was a-walking mine alane, It was by the dawning of the day, I heard twa brithers make their mane, And I listen'd weel what they did say.
n The youngest to the eldest said :
' Blythe and merrie how can we be ? There were three brithren of us born,
And ane of us is condemn'd to die.'—
in ' An ye wad be merrie, an ye wad be sad,
What the better wad billy Archie be ? Unless I had thirty men to mysell,
And a' to ride in my companie.
' Ten to hald the horses' heads,
And other ten the watch to be, And ten to break up the strong prison
Where billy Archie he does lie.
' Had I but thirty well-wight men, Thirty o' the best in Christiantie,
I wad go on to fair Dumfries,
I wad loose my brother and set him free.
Then up and spak him mettled John Ha7 (For leugh o' Liddesdale crackit he):
' An I had eleven men to mysell, It's aye the twalt man I wad be.'—
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