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'Robin, thou hast heard sung and say,
In gests and storys auld,
Sall have nocht when he wald.
Be eiked their cares sae cauld,
Be forrest, firth, or fauld.'
• Makyne, the nicht is soft and dry,
The wether warm and fair,
To walk attowre all where:
That is in luve contrair;
Unseen may mak repair.'
‘Robin, that warld is now away,
And quyt brocht till an end:
Sall it be as thou wend;
I words in vain did spend:
Murn on, I think to mend.'
Makyne, the hope of all my heil,
My heart on thee is set;
Quhyle I may live but lett,
Quhat grace so eir I get.'
· Robin, with thee I will not deill;
Adieu, for this we met.'
Makyne went hameward blyth enough,
Outowre the holtis hair;
Scho sang, and he sicht sair:
In dolor and in care,
Amang the rashy gair.
GENTLE HERDSMAN, TELL TO ME.
DIALOGUE BETWEEN A PILGRIM AND HERDSMAN. 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,
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 way is hard for to be gon; 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 is soe grievous and soe ill.'
“Thy yeeares are young, thy face is faire,
Thy witts are weake, thy thoughts are greene; Time hath not given thee leave, as yett, 15
For to committ so great a sinne.'
• Yes, heardsman, yes, soe woldest thou say,
If thou knewest soe much as I;
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:
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. VOL. II.
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;
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;
I triumph'd in his pain.
He left me to my pride;
In secret, where he dy'd.
And well my life shall pay;
And there forlorn despairing bid,
I'll lay me down and die:
And so for him will J.
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 pray;
Show me the right and readye way.'
• Now goe thy wayes, and God before!
For he must ever guide thee still:
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 8. 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,jij 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