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XXXV. A Tragical Ballad on the un
fortunate Love of Lord Thomas and Fair Ellinor, together with the Downfal of the Brown Girl.
Ord Thomas he was a bold Forrester,
And a Chaser of the King's Deer;
And Lord Thomas he loved her dear.
and riddle us both as one,
And let the Brown Girl alone ?
The Brown Girl she has got Houses and Land,
And fair Ellinor she has got none, Therefore I charge you on my Blessing,
Bring me the Brown Girl Home.
As many did more beside,
That should have been his Bride.
But when he came to fair Ellinor's Bower,
He knocked there at the Ring,
For to let Lord Thomas in.
What News hast thou brought unto me?
And that is bad News for thee.
O God forbid, Lord Thomas, she said,
That such a thing should be done ; I thought to have been thy Bride my own self,
And you to have been the Bridegroom. Come riddle my Riddle, dear Mother, she said,
And riddle it all in one, Whether I shall go to Lord Thomas's Wedding,
Or whether I shall tarry at home? There are many that are your Friends, Daughter,
And many that are your foe, Therefore I charge you on my Blessing,
To Lord Thomas's Wedding don't go. There's many that are my Friends, Mother,
And if a thousand more were my Foe, Betide my Life, betide my Death,
To Lord Thomas's Wedding I'll go.
She cloathed her self in gallant Attire,
And her merry Men all in green, And as they rid through every Town,
They took her to be some Queen.
But when she carne to Lord Thomas's Gate,
She knocked there at the Ring;
To let fair Ellinor in.
Is this your Bride ? Fair Ellinor said,
Methinks she looks wonderful brown, Thou might'st have had as fair a Woman,
As ever trod on the Ground.
Despise her not, fair Ellin, he said,
Despise her not unto me:
Than all her whole Body.
This brown Bride had a little Penknife,
That was both long and sharp,
Prick'd fair Ellinor to the Heart.
O Christ now save thee, Lord Thomas he said,
Methinks thou look'st wond'rous wan, Thou us'd to look with as fresh a Colour,
As ever the Sun shin'd on.
Oh, art thou blind ! Lord Thomas, she said,
Or can'st thou not very well see?
Run trickling down my knee?
Lord Thomas he had a Sword by his Side,
As he walk'd about the Hall,
And threw it against the Wall.
And the Point against his Heart;
That sooner did depart.
An excellent Ballad of a
To the Tune of, The Bride's Good-morrow.
Had I omitted this Story of Patient Griffel,
I am afraid the Admirers of old Ballads would accuse me of overlooking one of our most antique Songs. The first part is entirely written on the fame Subject as the Devonshire Nymph, Page 227, but which of the Stories is the best related, I Mall leave my Readers to determine, I am a fraid the Criticks will cavil at all and some, and such like Expressions, which they'll be apt to say might as well have been omitted. Another Objection they'll probably make is, that the Character of Griffel is out of Nature, and that such an Example of Patience never was. To the first I answer, that it is a Maxim laid down by several, and in the last Place by Hudibras, that one
Verse for Sense, and another for Rhyme is sufficient at once; and to vindicate our Poet from the other, it may naturally be supposed that he had unfortunately married a Shrew, andwas willing to preach up the Doctrine of