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1 Quaighs-Wooden cups, composed of staves hooped toge- 1804, as a noble contrast to the ordinary humility of the go.



See In

Introduction to this ballad.

nuine ballad diction.-ED.

4 See, in the Fabliaux of Monsieur le Grand, elegantly translated by the late Gregory Way, Esq., the tale of the

This stanza was quoted by the Edinburgh Reviewer, of Knight and the Sword. [Vol. ii. p. 3.]

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NOTE B.-P. 574.

The reader is here presented, from an old, and unfortunately an imperfect MS., with the undoubted original of Thomas the Rhymer's intrigue with the Queen of Faery. It will afford great amusement to those who would study the nature of traditional poetry, and the changes effected by oral tradition, to compare this ancient romance with the foregoing ballad. The same incidents are narrated, even the expression is often the same; yet the poems are as different in appearance, as if the older tale had been regularly and systematically modernized by a poet of the present day.

Incipit Prophesia Thomæ de Erseldoun.
In a lande as I was lent,

In the gryking of the day,

Ay alone as I went,

In Hantle bankys me for to play;

I saw the throstyl, and the jay,
Ye mawes movyde of her song,
Ye wodwale sange notes gay,
That al the wod about range.
In that longyng as I lay,
Undir nethe a dern tre,
I was war of a lady gay,
Come rydyng ouyr a fair le:
Zogh I suld sitt to domysday,
With my tong to wrabbe and wry,
Certenly all hyr aray,

It beth neuyer discryuyd for me.
Hyr palfra was dappyll gray,
Sycke on say neuer none';

As the son in somers day,

All abowte that lady schone.
Hyr sadel was of a rewel bone,

A semly syght it was to se,

Bryht with mony a precyous stone,
And compasyd all with crapste;
Stones of oryens, gret plente,
Her hair about her hede it hang,
She rode ouer the farnyle,

A while she blew, a while she sang,
Her girths of nobil silke they were,
Her boculs were of beryl stone,
Sadyll and brydil war

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With sylk and sendel about bedone,
Hyr patyrel was of a pall fyne,
And hyr croper of the arase,
Her brydil was of gold fine,

On cuery syde forsothe hang bells thre,
Her brydil reynes

A semly syzt

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He sayd Yonder is Mary of Might,
That bar the child that died for me,

Certes bot I may speke with that lady bright,
Myd my hert will breke in three;

I schal me hye with all my might,
Hyr to mete at Eldyn Tre.
Thomas rathly up her rasc,
And ran ouer mountayn hye,
If it he sothe the story says,
He met her euyn at Eldyn Tre.
Thomas knelyd down on his kne
Undir nethe the grenewood spray,

And sayd, Lovely lady, thou rue on me,

Queen of Heaven as you may well be zorg aff

But I am a lady of another countrie,

If I be pareld most of prise,AT

I ride after the wild fee,
My ratches rinnen at my devys.

If thou be pareld most of prise,


And rides a lady in strang foly,lesia no ha A
Lovely lady, as thou art wise, WA, TOTO NAAT
Giue you me leue to lige ye by.
Do way, Thomas, that were foly,
I pray ye, Thomas, late me be,
That sin will fordo all my bewtie.
Lovely ladye, rewe on me,
And euer more I shall with ye dwell,
Here my trowth I plyght to thee,
Where you belieues in heuin or hell.
Thomas, and you myght lyge me by,
Undir nethe this grene wode spray,

Thou would tell full hastely,

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That thou had layn by a lady anto

Lady, mote I lyge by the,

Undir nethe the grene wode tre,

For all the gold in chrystenty,

Suld you neuer be wryede for me.
Man on molde you will me marre,

And yet bot you may haf your will, 21 Ti
Trow you well, Thomas, you cheuyst ye warre;
For all my bewtie wilt you spill.
Down lyghtyd that lady bryzt,
Undir nethe the grene wode spray,
And as ye story sayth full ryzt,
Seuyn tymes by her he lay.

She sayd, Man, you lyst thi play,

What berde in bouyr may dele with thee,

That maries me all this long day;

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I trow my dedes will werke me care,
Jesu, my sole tak to ye,
Whedir so euyr my body sal fare.
She rode furth with all her my2t,
Undir nethe the derne lee,

It was as derke as at midnizt,
And euyr in water unto the kne;
Through the space of days thre,
He herde but swowyng of a flode;
Thomas sayd, Ful wo is me,
Now I spyll for fawte of fode;
To a garden she lede him tyte,
There was fruyte in grote plente,
Peyres and appless ther were rype,
The date and the damese,

The figge and als fylbert tre;an

The nyghtyngale bredyng in her neste, The papigaye about gan fle,

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The throstylcock sang wald hate no rest. HẢI,

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He pressed to pulle fruyt with his hand, t

As man for faute that was faynt;
She seyd, Thomas, lat al stand,
Or els the deuyl wil the ataynt.
Sche seyd, Thomas, I the hyzt,
To lay thi hede upon my kne,
And thou shalt see fayrer syght,
Than cuyr sawe man in their kintre.
Sees thou, Thomas, yon fayr way,
That lyggs ouyr yone fayr playn?
Yonder is the way to henyn for ay,

Whan synful sawles haf derayed their payne.
Sees thou, Thomas, yon secund way,
That lygges lawe undir the ryse?
Streight is the way, sothly to say,
To the joyes of paradyce.

Sees thou, Thomas, yon thyrd way,
That lygges ouyr yone how?
Wide is the way, sothly to say,

To the brynyng fyres of helle.

Sees thou, Thomas, yone fayr castell,

That standes ouyr yone fair hill?

Of town and tower it beereth the belle,
In middell erth is none like theretill.
Whan thou comyst in yone castell gaye,
I thee curteis man to be;
What so any man to you say,
Loke thu answer none but me.
My lord is servyd at yche messe,
With xxx kniztes feir and fre;
I shall say syttyng on the dese,
I toke thy speche beyone the le.
Thomas stode as still as stone,
And behelde that ladye gaye;

Than was sche fayr, and ryche anone,

And also ryal on hir palfreye.

The grewhoundes had fylde thaim on the dere,

The raches coupled, by my fay,

She blewe her horne Thomas to chere,

To the castell she went her way.
The ladye into the hall went,
Thomas folowyd at her hand;
Thar kept her mony a lady gent,
With curtasy and lawe.
Harp and fedyl both he fande,
The getern and the sawtry,
Lut and rybid ther gon gan,
Thair was al maner of mynstralsy,
The most fertly that Thomas thoght,
When he com emyddes the flore,
Fourty hertes to quarry were broght,
That had been befor both long and store.
Lymors lay lappyng blode,

And kokes standyng with dressyng knyfe,
And dressyd dere as thai wer wode,
And rewell was thair wonder.
Knyghtes dansyd by two and thre,
All that leue long day.

Ladyes that were gret of gre,

Sat and sang of rych aray.

Thomas sawe much more in that place,
Than I can descryve,

Til on a day, alas, alas,

My lovelye ladye sayd to me,

Busk ye, Thomas, you must agayn,
Here you may no longer be:

Hy then zerne that you were at hame,
I sal ye bryng to Eldyn Tre
Thomas answerd with heuy
And said, Lowely ladye, lat ma be,
For I say ye certenly here

Haf I be bot the space of daycs three.

Sothly, Thomas, as I telle ye.
You hath ben here thre yeres,
And here you may no longer be;
And I sal tele ye a skele,

To-morrowe of helle ye foule fende
Amang our folke shall chuse his fec;
For you art a larg man and an hende,
Trowe you wele he will chuse thee.
Fore all the golde that may be,
Fro hens unto the worldes ende,
Sall you not be betrayed by me,
And thairfor sall you
hens wende.
She broght hym euyn to Eldyn Tre,
Undir nethe the grene wode spray,
In Huntle bankes was fayr to be,
Ther breddes syng both nyzt and day.
Ferre ouyr yon montayns gray,

Ther hathe my facon;

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The Elfin Queen, after restoring Thomas to earth, pours forth a string of prophecies, in which we distinguish references to the events and personages of the Scottish wars of Edward III. The battles of Dupplin and Halidon are mentioned, and also Black Agnes, Countess of Dunbar. There is a copy of this poem in the Museum of the Cathedral of Lincoln, another in the collection in Peterborough, but unfortunately they are all in an imperfect state. Mr. Jamieson, in his curious Collection of Scottish Ballads and Songs, has an entire copy of this ancient poem, with all the collations. The lacunæ of the former editions have been supplied from his copy.



"The muscle is a square figure like a lozenge, but it is always voided of the field. They are carried as principal figures by the name of Learmont. Learmont of Earlstoun, in the Merss, carried or on a bend azure three muscles; of which family was Sir Thomas Learmont, who is well known by the name of Thomas the Rhymer, because ho wrote his prophecies in rhime. This prophetick herauld lived in the days of King Alexander the Third, and prophesied of his death, and of many other remarkable occurrences; particularly of the union of Scotland with England, which was not accomplished until the reign of James the Sixth, some hundred years after it was foretold by this gentleman, whose prophecies are much esteemed by many of the vulgar even at this day. I was promised by a friend a sight of his prophecies, of which there is everywhere to be had an epitome, which, suppose, is erroneous, and differs in many things from the original, it having been oft reprinted by some unskilful persons. Thus many things are amissing in the small book which are to be met with in the original, particularly these two lines concerning his neighbour, Bemerside:

'Tyde what may betide,

Haig shall be laird of Bemerside.

And indeed his prophecies concerning that ancient family have hitherto been true; for, since that time to this day, the Haigs have been lairds of that place. They carrie, Azure a saltier cantoned with two stars in chief and in base argent, as many crescents in the flanques or; and for crest a rock proper, with this motto, taken from the above-written rhyme'Tide what may.'"-NISBET on Marks of Cadency, p. 158.— He adds, "that Thomas' meaning may be understood by

heraulds when he speaks of kingdoms whose insignia seldom vary, but that individual families cannot be discovered, either because they have altered their bearings, or because they are pointed out by their crests and exterior ornaments, which are changed at the pleasure of the bearer." Mr. Nisbet, however, comforts himself for this obscurity, by reflecting, that "we may certainly conclude, from his writings, that herauldry was in good esteem in his days, and well known to the vulgar."-Ibid. p. 160.-It may be added, that the publication of predictions, either printed or hieroglyphical, in which noble families were pointed out by their armorial bearings, was, in the time of Queen Elizabeth, extremely common; and the influence of such predictions on the minds of the common people was so great as to occasion a prohibition, by statute, of prophecy by reference to heraldic emblems. Lord Henry Howard also (afterwards Earl of Northampton) directs against this practice much of the reasoning in his learned treatise, entitled, "A Defensation against the Poyson of pretended Prophecies."

NOTE D.-P. 578.

The strange occupation in which Waldhave beholds Merlin engaged, derives some illustration from a curious passage in Geoffrey of Monmouth's life of Merlin, above quoted. The poem, after narrating that the prophet had fled to the forest in a state of distraction, proceeds to mention, that, looking upon the stars one clear evening, he discerned from his astrological knowledge, that his wife, Gunedolen, had resolved, upon the next morning, to take another husband. As he had presaged to her that this would happen, and had promised her a nuptial gift (cautioning her, however, to keep the bridegroom out of his sight,) he now resolved to make good his word. Accordingly, he collected all the stags and lesser

game in his neighbourhood; and, having seated himself upon a buck, drove the herd before him to the capital of Cumberland, where Guendolen resided. But her lover's curiosity leading him to inspect too nearly this extraordinary cavalcade, Merlin's rage was awakened, and he slew him with the stroke of an antler of the stag. The original runs thus:

"Dixerat: et silvas et saltus circuit omnes, varese apr
Cervorumque greges agmen collegit in unum,
Et damas, capreasque simul; cervoque resedit,
Et, veniente die, compellens agmina præ se,
Festinans vadit quo nubit Guendolæna,
Postquam venit eo, pacienter ipse coegit
Cervos ante fores, proclamans, Guendolana,
Guendolana, veni, te talia munera spectant.
Ocius ergo venit subridens Guendolæna,
Gestarique virum cervo miratur, et illum
Sic parere viro, tantum quoque posse ferarum
Uniri numerum quas præ se solus agebat,
Sicut pastor oves, quas ducere suevit ad herbas.
Stabat ab excelsa sponsus spectando fenestra,
In solio mirans equitem, risumque movebat.
Ast ubi vidit eum vates, animoque quis esset
Calluit, extemplo divulsit cornua cervo
Quo gestabatur, vibrataque jecit in illum,
Et caput illius penitus contrivit, eumque
Reddidit exanimem, vitamque fugavit in auras ;
Ocius inde suum, talorum verbere, cervum
Diffugiens egit, silvasque redire paravit.”

For a perusal of this curious poem, accurately copied from a MS. in the Cotton Library, nearly coeval with the author, I was indebted to my learned friend, the late Mr. Ritson. There is an excellent paraphrase of it in the curious and entertaining Specimens of Early English Romances, published by Mr Ellis.



Lord Ronald's Coronach.'

THE simple tradition, upon which the following stanzas are founded, runs thus: While two Highland hunters were passing the night in a solitary bothy, (a hut, built for the purpose of hunting,) and making merry over their venison and whisky, one of them expressed a wish that they had pretty lasses to complete their party. The words were scarcely uttered, when two beautiful young women, habited in green, entered the hut, dancing and singing. One of the hunters was seduced by the siren who attached herself particularly to him, to leave the hut: the other remained, and, suspicious of the fair seducers, continued to play upon a trump, or Jew's harp, some strain, consecrated to

the Virgin Mary. Day at length came, and the temptress vanished. Searching in the forest, he found the bones of his unfortunate friend, who had been torn to pieces and devoured by the fiend into whose toils he had fallen. The place was from thence called the Glen of the Green Women.

Glenfinlas is a tract of forest-ground, lying in the Highlands of Perthshire, not far from Callender in Menteith. It was formerly a royal forest, and now belongs to the Earl of Moray. This country, as well as the adjacent district of Balquidder, was, in times of yore, chiefly inhabited by the Macgregors. To the west of the Forest of Glenfinlas lies Loch Katrine, and its romantic avenue, called the Troshachs. Ben

1 Coronach is the lamentation for a deceased warrior, sung by ledi, Benmore, and Benvoirlich, are mountains in the the aged of the clan.

same district, and at no great distance from Glenfin

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