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Robin, thou hast heard


In gests and storys auld,
The man that will not when he may,

Sall have nocht when he wald.

pray to heaven baith nicht and day,

Be eiked their cares sae cauld,
That presses first with thee to play

Be forrest, firth, or fauld.'



Makyne, the nicht is soft and dry,

The wether warm and fair,
And the grene wod richt neir-hand by,

To walk attowre all where:
There may nae janglers us espy,

That is in luve contrair;
Therin, Makyne, baith you and I

Unseen may mak repair.'


· Robin, that warld is now away,

And quyt brocht till an end:
And nevir again thereto, perfay,

Sall it be as thou wend;
For of my pain thou made but play;

I words in vain did spend:
As thou hast done, sae sall I

I think to mend.'


Murn on,

“Makyne, the hope of all my heil, ,

My heart on thee is set;
I'll evermair to thee be leil,

Quhyle I may live but lett, ,
Never to fail as uthers feill,

Quhat grace so eir I get.' Ver. 99, Bannatyne's MS. has woid, not woud, as in Ed. 1770.–Ver. 117, Bannatyne's MS. reads as above feill, not faill, as in Ed. 1770.

* Robin, with thee I will not deill;

Adieu, for this we met.'


Makyne went hameward blyth enough,

Outowre the holtis hair;
Pure Robin murnd, and Makyne leugh;

Scho sang, and he sicht sair:
And so left him bayth wo and wreuch,

In dolor and in care,
Keipand his herd under a heuch,

Amang the rashy gair.





The scene of this beautiful old ballad is laid near Walsingham, in Norfolk, where was anciently an image of the Virgin Mary, famous over all Europe for the numerous pilgrimages made to it, and the great riches it possessed. Erasmus has given a very exact and humorous description of the superstitions practised there in his time. See his account of the Virgo Parathalassia, in his colloquy, intitled, “Peregrinatio religionis ergo.' He tells us, the rich offerings in silver, gold, and precious stones, that were there shewn him, were incredible, there being scarce a person of any note in England, but what some time or other paid a visit, or sent a present to our lady of Walsingham.'' At the dissolution of the monasteries in 1538, this splendid image, with another from Ipswich, was carried to Chelsea, and there burnt in the presence of commissioners; who, we trust, did not burn the jewels and the finery.

This poem is printed from a copy in the Editor's folio MS. which had greatly suffered by the hand of time; but vestiges of several of the lines remaining, some conjectural supplements have been attempted, which, for greater exactness, are in this one ballad distinguished by italics.

GENTLE heardsman, tell to me,

Of curtesy I thee pray,
Unto the towne of Walsingham

Which is the right and ready way.' See at the end of this ballad an account of the annual offerings of the Earls of Northumberland.

• Unto the towne of Walsingham The

is hard for to be gon;

way And verry crooked are those pathes

For you to find out all alone.'


• Weere the miles doubled thrise,

And the way never soe ill,
Itt were not enough for mine offence:

Itt is soe grievous and soe ill.'

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Thy yeeares are young, thy face is faire,

Thy witts are weake, thy thoughts are greene; Time hath not given thee leave, as yett,

For to committ so great a sinne.


• Yes, heardsman, yes, soe woldest thou say,

If thou knewest soe much as I;
My witts, and thoughts, and all the rest,

Have well deserved for to dye.


I am not what I seeme to bee,

My clothes and sexe doe differ farr: I am a woman, woe is me!

Born to greeffe and irksome care.


For my beloved, and well-beloved,

My wayward cruelty could kill:
And though my teares will nought avail,

Most dearely I bewail him still.


He was the flower of noble wights,

None ever more sincere colde bee; Of comely mien and shape hee was,

And tenderlye hee loved mee.

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When thus I saw he loved me well,

I grewe so proud his paine to see,
That I, who did not know myselfe,

Thought scorne of such a youth as hee.


1 And

grew soe coy and nice to please,
As women's lookes are often soe,
He might not kisse, nor hand forsooth,

Unlesse I willed him soe to doe.


Thus being wearyed with delayes

To see I pityed not his greeffe,
He gott him to a secrett place,

And there he dyed without releeffe.


And for his sake these weeds I weare,

And sacriffice my tender age; ;
And every day Ile begg my bread,

To undergoe this pilgrimage.

Thus every day I fast and pray,
And ever will doe till I dye;

50 1 Three of the following stanzas have been finely paraphrased by Dr. Goldsmith, in his charming ballad of • Edwin and Emma;' the reader of taste will have a pleasure in comparing them with the original.

And still I try'd each fickle art,

Importunate and vain;
And while his passion touch'd my heart,

I triumph'd in his pain.
'Till quite dejected with my scorn,

He left me to my pride;
And sought a solitude forlorn,

In secret, where he dy'd.
But mine the sorrow, mine the faulty

And well my life shall pay;
I'll seek the solitude he sought,

And stretch me where he lay.
And there forlorn despairing bid,

I'll lay me down and die:
'Twas so for me that Edwin did,

And so for him will ).

And gett me to some secrett place,

For soe did hee, and soe will I.

Now, gentle heardsman, aske no more,
But keepe my secretts I thee

Unto the towne of Walsingam

Show me the right and readye way.'


Now goe thy wayes, and God before!

For he must ever guide thee still:
Turne downe that dale, the right hand path,

And soe, faire pilgrim, fare thee well!' 60 *** To shew what constant tribute was paid to 'Our Lady of Walsingham,' I shall give a few extracts from the Household-Book of Henry Algernon Percy, 5th Earl of Northumberland.' Printed 1770, 8vo.

Sect. XLIII. pag. 337, &c. Item, My Lorde usith yerly to send afor Michaelmas for his Lordschip’s Offerynge to our Lady of Walsyngeham,-iiij d.

Item, My Lorde usith ande accustumyth to sende yerely for the upholdynge of the Light of Wax which his Lordschip fyndith birnynge yerly befor our Lady of Walsyngham, contenynge xj lb. of Wax in it after vij d. ob. for the fyndynge of every lb. redy wrought by a covenaunt maid with the Channon by great, for the hole yere, for the fyndinge of the said Lyght byrnning,– vi s. viiij d.

Item, My Lord useth and accustomith to syende yerely to the Channon that kepith the Light before our Lady of Walsyngham, for his reward for the hole yere, for kepynge of the said Light, lightynge of it at all service tymes dayly thorowt the yere,-xij d.

Item, My Lord usith and accustomyth yerely to send to the Prest that kepith the Light, lyghtynge of it at all service tymes daily thorowt the yere, iij s. iiij d.



TAMWORTH, Was a story of great fame among our ancestors. The author of the “ Art of English poesie,' 1589, 4to, seems to speak of it as a real fact. Describing that vicious mode of speech, which the Greeks called Acyron,' i.e., “When we use a dark and obscure word, utterly repugnant to that we should express;' he adds, 'Such manner of uncouth speech did the Tanner of Tamworth use to

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