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To beg my bread from door to door

I wis, it were a brenning shame : To rob and steal it were a finne:

To worke my limbs I cannot frame.


Now lle away to lonesome lodge,

For there my father bade me wend; When all the world should frown on mee,

I there fhold find a trusty friend.



WAY then hyed the heire of I.inne

U'er hill and holt, and moor and fenne, Untill he came to lonesome lodge,

That stood fo lowe in a lonely glenne.

He looked up, he looked downe,

In l.ope some comfort for to winne: But bare and lothly were the walles.

Here's sorry cheare, quo' the heire of Linne.

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The little windowe dim and darke

Was hung with ivy, brere, and yewe; No shimmering sunn here ever shone ;

Ne halefume breeze here ever blew.


No chair, ne table he mote spye,

No chearful hearth, ne welcome bed, Nought fave a rope with renning noose,

I hat dangling hung up o'er his head.


And over it in broad letters,

These words were written fo plain to see: “Ah! graceleffe wretch, haft spent thine all,

And brought thyselfe to penurie?


“ All this my boding mind misgave,

“ I therefore left this trusty friend : “ Let it now sheeld thy foule disgrace,

“ And all thy shame and sorrows end.”


Sorely fhent wi' this rebuke,

Sorely (hent was the heire of Linge; His heart, I wis, was near to brast

With guilt and forrowe, fame and finne.


Never a word spake the heire of Linne,

Never a word he spake but three : “ This is a trusty friend indeed,

" And is right welcome unto mee."

Then round his necke the corde he drewe,

And sprang aloft with his bodie : When lo! the ceiling burst in twaine,

35 And to the ground came tumbling hee.


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Astonyed lay the heire of Linne,

Ne knewe if he were live or dead :
At length he looked, and sawe a bille,

And in it a key of gold fo redd.


He took the bill, and lookt it on,

Strait good comfort found he there :
Itt told him of a hole in the wall,

In which there stood three chests in-fere *.


Two were full of the beaten golde,

The third was full of white money;
And over them in broad letters

These words were written so plaine to see:

“ Once more, my sonne, I sette thee clere ; .

" Amend thy life and follies past ;
" For but thou amend thee of thy life,

That rope must be thy end at last."


And let it bee, fayd the heire of Linne;

And let it bee, but if I amend t: For here I will make mine avow,

This reade I Mall guide me to the end.


Away then went with a merry cheare,

Away then went the heire of Linne; I wis, he neither ceas'd ne blanne,

Till John o'the Scales house he did winne. 60 * in-fere, i. fo together.

of i.e. unless I amend. loc, advicc, counsel.

Ver. 60, an old ncribern pkrase.


And when he came to John o' the Scales,

Upp at the speere * then looked hee;
There fate three lords upon a rowe,

Were drinking of the wine so free.


And John himself sate at the bord-head,

Because now lord of Linne was hee.
I pray thee, he said, good John o' the Scales,

One forty pence for to lend mee.

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Away, away, thou thriftless loone;

Away, away, this may not bee:
For Chrifts curse on my head, he fayd,

If ever I trust thee one people.

Then bespake the heire of Linne,

To John o' the Scales wife then spake he:
Madame, some almes on me bestowe,

I pray for sweet saint Charitie.


Away, away, thou thriftless loone,

I swear thou getteit no almes of mee ;
For if we shold hang any lofel heere,

The first we wold begin with thee.


* Perbaps the Hole in the door or window, by which it was fpeere:', 1. e. Sparred, faftened, or jut.-In Bale's 2d Part of the Acts of Eng. Votaries, we have this phrase, (fo.38.) “The dore therof oft tymes 5 opened and speared agayne.”

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Then bespake a good fellowe,

Which lat at John o'the Scales his bord; Sayd, Turn agaive, thou heire of Linne;

Sumne time thou wast a well good lord :


Soine time a good fellow thou hast been,

And sparedit not thy gold and fee; Therefore Ile lend thee forty pence,

And other forty if need bec.


And ever, I pray thee, John o' the Scales,

To let hin sit in thy companie : For well I wot thou hadst his land,

And a good bargain it was to thee.

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Up then spake him John o' the Scales,

All wood he answer*d him againe : Now Christs curse on my head, he sayd,

But I did lose by that bargàine.


And here I proffer thee, heire of Linne,

Before these lords so faire and free,
Thou shalt have it backe again better cheape,

By a hundred markes, than I had it of thee.

I drawe you to record, lords, he said.

With that he cast him a gods pennie : Now by my fay, fayd the heire of Linne,

And here, good John, is thy money.

Vel. 34. 102. caft, is the reading of the MS.


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