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He led the men of Bishopricke,

When Thomas Ruthal bore the sway: Though the Scottish Habs1 were stout and true, The English bowmen wan that day.

And since he has kepte Berwick upon Tweed,
The town was never better kept I wot;
He maintained leal and order along the Border,
And still was ready to prick the Scot.

The country then lay in great peace,

And grain and grass was sown and won ; Then plenty fill'd the market crosse,

When Lord Ewrie kept Berwick town.

With our Queene's brother he hath been,2
And rode rough shod through Scotland of late;
They have burn'd the Mers and Tiviotdale,

And knocked full loud at Edinburgh gate.

William routed the Borderers, who, under the command of Lord Home, made an excursion into Northumberland, previous to the battle of Flodden. He is mentioned in the Metrical History of the Battle, v. 105, &c. In the present ballad, he is erroneously denominated Sir Ralph Bulmer.

1[Habs-i. e. halberts; spears.]

* The Earl of Hertford, afterwards Duke of Somerset, and brother of Queen Jane Seymour, made a furious incursion into Scotland, in 1545, See Introduction.

Now the King hath sent him a broad letter,

A Lord of Parliament to be:

It were well if every nobleman

Stood like Lord Ewrie in his degree.


Now first publISHED. [1802.]

The Castle of Lochmaben was formerly a noble building, situated upon a peninsula, projecting into one of the four lakes which are in the neighbourhood of the royal burgh, and is said to have been the residence of Robert Bruce, while Lord of Annandale. Accordingly it was always held to be a royal fortress, the keeping of which, according to the custom of the times, was granted to some powerful lord, with an allotment of lands and fishings, for the defence and maintenance of the place. There is extant a grant, dated 16th March, 1511, to Robert Lauder of the Bass, of the office of Captain and keeper of Lochmaben Castle, for seven years, with many perquisites. Among others, the "lands stolen frae the King," are bestowed on the Captain, as his proper lands. What shall we say of a country, where the very ground was a subject of theft?

O HEARD ye na o' the silly blind Harper,
How long he lived in Lochmaben town?
And how he wad gang to fair England,

To steal the Lord Warden's Wanton Brown?

But first he gaed to his gude wyfe,


Wi' a the haste that he could thole—1 "This wark," quo' he, " will ne'er gae Without a mare that has a foal."

Quo' she-" Thou hast a gude gray mare,
That can baith lance o'er laigh and hie;
Sae set thee on the gray mare's back,
And leave the foal at hame wi' me."-

So he is up to England gane,

And even as fast as he may drie ; And when he cam to Carlisle gate,


O whae was there but the Warden hie?

"Come into my hall, thou silly blind Harper, And of thy harping let me hear!"-.

"O, by my sooth," quo' the silly blind Harper,

"I wad rather hae stabling for my mare.'

The Warden look'd ower his left shoulder,
And said unto his stable groom—

"Gae take the silly blind Harper's mare,
And tie her beside my Wanton Brown."

Then aye he harped, and aye he carped, 3
Till a' the lordlings footed the floor;

Suffer. Endure.-3 Sung.

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But an the music was sae sweet,

The groom had nae mind o' the stable door.

And aye he harped, and aye he carped,
Till a' the nobles were fast asleep;
Then quickly he took aff his shoon,
And saftly down the stair did creep.

Syne to the stable door he hied,

Wi' tread as light as light could be; And when he open'd and gaed in,

There he fand thirty steeds and three.

He took a cowt halter1 frae his hose,
And o' his purpose he didna fail;
He slipt it ower the Wanton's nose,
And tied it to his gray mare's tail.

He turn'd them loose at the castle gate,
Ower muir and moss and ilka dale;

And she ne'er let the Wanton bait,

But kept him a-galloping hame to her foal.

The mare she was right swift o' foot,
She didna fail to find the way;

For she was at Lochmaben gate
A lang three hours before the day. :

1 Cowt halter-Colt's halter.

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