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Fair Margaret fate in her bower-window,
A combing of her hair ;
As they were a riding near.
Down she laid her ivory comb,
he bound ber hair ;
But never more came there.
When day was gone, and night was come,
And all men faft asleep,
And stood at Williams bed feet.
God give you joy, you true lovèrs,
In bride-bed faft asleep ;
And I am in my winding sheet.
When day was come, and night was gone,
And all men wak'd from sleep,
My dear, I've cause to weep.
I dream'd a dream, my dear lady,
Such dreams are never good;
And my bride-bed full of blood.
Such dreams, such dreams, my honour'd fir,
They never do prove good ;
And thy bride-bed full of blood.
He called his merry men all,
By one, by two, and by three, Saying, I'll away to fair Margarets bower,
By the leave of my lady.
And when he came to fair Margarets bower,
He knocked at the ring ;
To let sweet William in.
Then he turn'd up the covering-sheet, ,
Pray let me see the dead ;
She has lost her cherry red.
I'll do more for thee, Margaret,
any of thy kin;
Though a smile I cannot win.
With that bespoke the seven brethren,
Making most piteous moan,
And let our sister alone.
If I do kiss my jolly brown dame,
I do but what is right ;
By day, nor yet by night.
Pray tell me, then, how much you'll deal,
Of white bread and your wine :
To-morrow shall be dealt at mine.
Fair Margaret died to-day, to-day,
Sweet William he died the morrow ; Fair Margaret died for pure true love,
Sweet William he died for forrow.
Margaret was buried in the lower chancel,
And William in the higher ;
And out of his a briar.
They grew as high as the church-top,
Till they could grow no higher;
Which made all the people admire.
Then came the clerk of the parish,
As you this truth shall hear,
Or they had now been there.
B ALL A D III.
B A T E M A NS TRAGEDY.*
OU dainty dames so finely fram'd
Of beautys chiefest mold,
Like lambs in Cupids fold,
A lesson, in my mind,
And bear a faithless mind.
Not far from Nottingham, of late,
In Clifton, as I hear,
For beauty without peer ;
Yet, as you may perceive,
And sooneft will deceive.
* The full title of the old copy is, “ A Godly Warning to all Maidens, by the Example of God's Judgment shewed on Jerman's Wife of Clifton, in the County of Nottingham, who, lying in child-bed was born away, and never heard of after.” A tragedy, intitled The Vow breaker, written by one William Sampson, and printed in 1636, is founded on this ballad, and quotes two or three verses from it, as “ a lamentable new ditty."
This gallant dame she was belov'd
Of many in that place ;
Her body to embrace :
Young Bateman callid by name,
Unto this maiden came.
Such love and liking there was found,
That he, from all the rest,
And she did love him beft :
Did pass between them two,
This true loves knot undo.
He brake a piece of gold in twain,
Dear heart, myself will have.
While I remain alive,
Be seen at all to thrive.
This passed on for two months space,
And then this maid began