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I.

ADAM BELL, CLYM OF THE CLOUGH,

AND. WILLIAM OF CLOUDESLY,

were three noted outlaws, whose skill in archery rendered them formerly as famous in the North of England, as Robin Hobin and his fellows were in the midland counties. Their place of residence was in the forest of Englewood, not far from Carlisle, (called corruptly in the ballad English-wood, whereas Engle, or Ingle-wood

fignifies Wood for firing.) 'At what time they lived does not appear. The author of the common ballad on THE PEDIGREE, EDU

CATION, MARRIAGE, OF ROBIN Hood,' makes them contemporary with Robin Hood's father, in order to give him the bonour of beating them: viz.

AND

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The father of ROBIN a Forefter was,

And he shot in a'lufty long-bow
Two north-country miles and an inch dt a fhot,

As the Pindar of Wakefield does know :

For he brought Adam Bell, and Clim of the Clough,

And William a Clorudéflee
Folhoot with our Forester for forty mark;
And our Forefter beat them all three.

Colle&t. of Old Ballads. 1727. I vol. p.67.

This seems to prove that they were commonly thought to have lived before the popular Hero of Sberweed.

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Our northern archers were not unknown to their southern, countrymen, their excellence at the long-bow is often alludeid. to by our ancient poets. Shakespeare, in his comedy of “ Much adoe about nothing,Azt 1. makes Benedicke confirm bis resolves of not yielding to love, by this protestation,

If I do, hang me in a bottle like a cat*, and shoot at me, and he that hits me, let him be clapt on the shoulder and called Adam :" meaning Adam Bell, as Theobald rightly observes, who refers to one or two other pasages in our old poets wherein he is mentioned.' The Oxford editor has also well conjectured that Abraham Cupid" in Romeo and Juliet, A. 2. f. 1. should be Adam Cupid,in allufion to our archer. Ben Johnson' has mentioned CLYM O' the Clough in his Alchemist, Act 1. fci 2: And Sir William Davenant, in a mock poem of his, called “ The long vacation in London,describes the Attorneys and Proctors, as making matches to meet in Finsbury fields.

With loynes in canvas bow-case tyde ;
Where arrowes stick with mickle pride ; ..
Like ghosts of ADAM Bell and CLYMME.
Sol fets for fear they'l floot at him.

Works, p. 291. fol. 1673. I have only to add further concerning the principal Hero of this Ballad, that the Bells were noted rogues in the North so late as the time of Q. Elizabeth. See in Rymer's Fædera, a letter from lord William Howard to some of the officers of fate, wherein be mentions them.

As for the follozving stanzas, they will be judged from the style, orthography, and numbers, to be very ancient : they are given from an old black-letter quarto, Imprinted at London in Lothburpe bp Wollpam Eopland (no date):

corrected

* Bottles formerly were of leather; though perhaps a wooden bottle might be here meant. It is fill a diversion in Scotland to hang up a cat in a small cask or firkin, balf filled with foot: and then a parcel of clowns on borseback try to beat out the ends of it, order to fhew their dexterity in escaping before the contents fall upons bem,

corrected in some places by another copy in the editor's folia MS. In that volume this ballad is followed by another, intitled Younge CloudEslek, being a continuation of the present story, and reciting the adventures of William of Cloudesly's fon : but greatly inferior to this both in merit and antiquity.

PART THE FIRST.

1

MERY it was in grene forest

Amonge the levès grene,
Wheräs nuen hunt east and weft

Wyth bowes and arrowes kene ;

To ryse the dere oat of theyr denne ;

Suche fightes hath ofte bene fene ;
As by thre yemen of the north countrèy,

By them it is I meane.

The one of them hight Adam Bel,

The other Clym of the Clough,
The thyrd was William of Cloudelly,

An archer good ynough.

They were outlawed for venyson,

These yemen everychone;
They swore them brethren upon a day,

To Englyshe wood for to gone.

15

Now lith and lyften, gentylmen,

That of myrthe loveth to here : Two of them were fingele men,

The third had a wedded fere.

20

Wyllyam was the wedded man,

Muche more than was hys care :
He fayde to hys brethren upon a day,

To Carleil he wold fare ;

25

For to speke with fayre Alyce his wife,

And with hys chyldren thre. By my trouth, fayde Adam Bel,

Not by the counfell of me:

30

For if ye go to Carleil, brother,

And from thys wylde wode wende, If the justice may you take,

Your lyfe were at an ende.

If that I come not to-morowe, brother,

By pryme to you agayne,
Truste not els, but that I am take,

Or else that I am slayne.

35

He toke hys leave of hys brethren two,

And to Carleil he is gon:
There he knocked at his owne windowe

Shortlye and anone.

Wher

Ver. 24. Caerlel, in PC. paffime

1

Wher be you, fayre Alyce my wyfe,

And my chyldren thre?
Lyghtly let in thyne owne husbande,

Wyllyam of Cloudeslè.

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45

• Alas! then fayde fayre Alyce,

And fyghed wonderous fore,
Thys place hath ben besette for you
Thys halfe

yere

and more.

Now am I here, fayde Cloudeslè,

I wold that in I were :
Now fetche us meate and drynke ynoughe,

And let us make good chere.

She fetched hym meate and drynke plentyè,

Lyke a true wedded wyfe;
And pleased hym with that she had,

Whome she loved as her lyfe.

55

There lay an old wyfe in that place,

A lytle befyde the fyre,
Whych Wyllyam had found of charytyè

More than seven yere.

60

Up she rose, and forth the goes,

Evel mote she spede therefoore;
For she had not set no fote on ground

In seven yere before.

Vol. I.

She

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