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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With that an angel he cast on the ground,
And dropped in angels full three thousand pound -,
And oftentimes it was proved most plain,
For the gentlemen's one the beggar dropt twain:
So that the place, wherein they did sit,
With gold it was covered every whit.
The gentlemen then, having dropt all their store,
Said, ' Now, beggar, hold, for we have no more,
xxxi ' Thou hast fulfilled thy promise aright.'— 'Then marry,' quoth he, 'my girl to this Knight; And here,' added he, ' I will now throw you down A hundred pounds more to buy her a gown.'
The gentlemen all, that this treasure had seen, Admired the beggar of Bednall-green : And all those, that were her suitors before, Their flesh for very anger they tore.
Thus was fair Bessy match'd to the Knight,
And then made a lady in others' despite :
A fairer lady there never was seen
Than the blind beggar's daughter of Bednall-green.
But of their sumptuous marriage and feast, What brave lords and knights thither were prest, The second fitt shall set forth to your sight With marvellous pleasure and wished delight. 818
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