Child's Ballads/76

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Child's Collected Ballads by Francis James Child
"The Lass of Roch Royal", no. 076


A[edit]

FAIR ISABELL of Rochroyall,
She dreamed where she lay,
She dreamd a dream of her love Gregory,
A litle before the day.
O huly, huly rose she up,
And huly she put on,
And huly, huly she put on
The silks of crimsion.
'Gar sadle me the black,' she sayes,
'Gar sadle me the broun;
Gar sadle me the swiftest steed
That ever rode the toun.
'Gar shoe him with the beat silver,
And grind him with the gold;
Gar put two bells on every side,
Till I come to some hold.'
She had not rode a mile, a mile,
A mile but barely three,
Till that she spyed a companie
Come rakeing oere the lee.
'O whether is this the first young may,
That lighted and gaed in;
Or is this the second young may,
That neer the sun shined on?
Or is this Fair Isabell of Roch Royall,
Banisht from kyth and kin.'
'O I am not the first young may,
That lighted and gaed in;
Nor neither am I the second young may,
That neer the sun shone on;
'But I'm Fair Isabell of Roch Royall
Banisht from kyth and kin;
I'm seeking my true-love Gregory,
And I woud I had him in.'
'O go your way to yon castle,
And ride it round about,
And there you'll find Love Gregory;
He's within, without any doubt.'
O she's away to yon castle,
She's tirled at the pin:
'O open, open, Love Gregory,
And let your true-love in.'
'If you be the lass of the Rochroyall,
As I trow not you be,
You will tell me some of our love-tokens,
That was betwixt you and me.'
'Have you not mind, Love Gregory,
Since we sat at the wine;
When we changed the rings off our fingers,
And ay the worst fell mine?
'Mine was of the massy gold,
And thine was of the tin;
Mine was true and trusty both,
And thine was false within.'
If you be [the] lass of the Roch Royall,
As I trow not you be,
You will tell me some other love-token
That was betwixt you and me.'
'Have you not mind, Love Gregory,
Since we sat at the wine,
We changed the smocks off our two backs,
And ay the worst fell mine?
'Mine was of the holland fine,
And thine was course and thin;
So many blocks have we two made,
And ay the worst was mine.'
'Love Gregory, he is not at home,
But he is to the sea;
If you have any word to him,
I pray you leave't with me.'

  • * * * *

'O who will shoe my bony foot?
Or who will glove my hand?
Or who will bind my midle jimp
With the broad lilly band?
'Or who will comb my bony head
With the red river comb?
Or who will be my bairn's father
Ere Gregory he come home?'
'O I's gar shoe thy bony foot,
And I's gar glove thy hand,
And I's gar bind thy midle jimp
With the broad lilly band.
'And I's gar comb thy bony head
With the red river comb;
But there is none to be thy bairn's father
Till Love Gregory he come home.
'I'll set my foot on the ship-board,
God send me wind and more!
For there's never a woman shall bear a son
Shall make my heart so sore.'
'I dreamed a dream now since yestreen,
That I never dreamed before;
I dreamd that the lass of the Rochroyall
Was knocking at the door.'
'Ly still, ly still, my dear son,
Ly still, and take a sleep;
For it's neither ane hour, nor yet a half,
Since she went from the gate.'
'O wo be to you, ill woman,
And ane ill death mott you die!
For you might have come to my bed-side,
And then have wakened me.
'Gar sadle me the black,' he sayes,
'Gar sadle me the broun;
Gar sadle me the swiftest steed
That ever rode the toun.
'Gar shoe him with the beat silver,
Gar grind him with the gold;
Cause put two bells on every side,
Till I come to some hold.'
They sadled him the black, the black,
So did they him the broun;
So did they him the swiftest steed
That ever rode to toun.
They shoed him with the beat silver,
They grind him with the gold;
They put two bells on every side,
Till he came to some hold.
He had not rode a mile, a mile,
A mile but barely three,
Till that he spyed her comely corps
Come raking oere the lee.
'Set doun, set doun these comely corps,
Let me look on the dead:'
And out he's ta'en his little pen-knife,
And slitted her winding sheet.
And first he kist her cheek, her cheek,
And then he kist her chin;
And then he kist her rosy lips,
But there was no breath within.
'Gar deall, gar deall for my love sake
The spiced bread and the wine;
For ere the morn at this time
So shall you deall for mine.
'Gar deall, gar deall for my love sake
The pennys that are so small;
For ere the morn at this time,
So shall you deall for all.'
The one was buried in Mary kirk,
The other in Mary quire;
Out of the one there sprung a birk,
Out of the other a bryar;
So thus you may well know by that
They were two lovers dear.

B[edit]

'O WHA will shoe thy bonny feet?
Or wha will glove thy hand?
Or wha will lace thy midle jimp,
With a lang, lang London whang?
'And wha will kame thy bonny head,
With a tabean brirben kame?
And wha will be my bairn's father,
Till Love Gregory come hame?'
'Thy father'll shoe his bonny feet,
Thy mither'll glove his hand;
Thy brither will lace his middle jimp,
With a lang, lang London whang.
'Mysel will kame his bonny head,
With a tabean brirben kame;
And the Lord will be the bairn's father,
Till Love Gregory come hame.'
Then she's gart build a bonny ship,
It's a' cored oer with pearl,
And at every needle-tack was in't
There hang a siller bell.
And she's awa . . .
To sail upon the sea;
She's gane to seek Love Gregory,
In lands whereer he be.
She hadna saild a league but twa,
O scantly had she three,
Till she met with a rude rover,
Was sailing on the sea.
'O whether is thou the Queen hersel,
Or ane o her maries three?
Or is thou the lass of Lochroyan,
Seeking Love Gregory?'
'O I am not the Queen hersell,
Nor ane o her maries three;
But I am the lass o Lochroyan,
Seeking Love Gregory.
'O sees na thou yone bonny bower?
It's a' cored oer with tin;
When thou hast saild it round about,
Love Gregory is within.'
When she had saild it round about,
She tirled at the pin:
'O open, open, Love Gregory,
Open, and let me in!
For I am the lass of Lochroyan,
Banisht frae a' my kin.'
'If thou be the lass of Lochroyan,
As I know no thou be,
Tell me some of the true tokens
That past between me and thee.'
'Hast thou na mind, Love Gregory,
As we sat at the wine,
We changed the rings aff ither's hands,
And ay the best was mine?
'For mine was o the gude red gould,
But thine was o the tin;
And mine was true and trusty baith,
But thine was fa'se within.
'If thou be the lass of Lochroyan,
As I know na thou be,
Tell me some mair o the true tokens
Past between me and thee.'
'And has na thou na mind, Love Gregory,
As we sat on yon hill,
Thou twin'd me of my [maidenhead,]
Right sair against my will?
'Now open, open, Love Gregory,
Open, and let me in!
For the rain rains on my gude cleading,
And the dew stands on my chin.'
Then she has turnd her round about:
'Well, since that it be sae,
Let never woman that has born a son
Hae a heart sae full of wae.
'Take down, take down that mast o gould,
Set up a mast of tree;
For it dinna become a forsaken lady
To sail so royallie.'
'I dreamt a dream this night, mother,
I wish it may prove true,
That the bonny lass of Lochroyan
Was at the gate just now.'
'Lie still, lie still, my only son,
And sound sleep mayst thou get,
For it's but an hour or little mair
Since she was at the gate.'
Awa, awa, ye wicket woman,
And an ill dead may ye die!
Ye might have ither letten her in,
Or else have wakened me.
'Gar saddle to me the black,' he said,
'Gar saddle to me the brown;
Gar saddle to me the swiftest steed
That is in a' the town.'
Now the first town that he cam to,
The bells were ringing there;
And the neist toun that he cam to,
Her corps was coming there.
'Set down, set down that comely corp,
Set down, and let me see
Gin that be the lass of Lochroyan,
That died for love o me.'
And he took out the little penknife
That hang down by his gare,
And he's rippd up her winding-sheet,
A lang claith-yard and mair.
And first he kist her cherry cheek,
And syne he kist her chin,
And neist he kist her rosy lips;
There was nae breath within.
And he has taen his little penknife,
With a heart that was fou sair,
He has given himself a deadly wound,
And word spake never mair.

C[edit]

  • * * *

SHE sailed west, she sailed east,
She sailed mony a mile,
Until she cam to Lord Gregor's yett,
And she tirled at the pin.
'It's open, open, Lord Gregory,
Open, and let me in;
For the rain drops on my gouden hair,
And drops upon your son.'
'Are you the Queen of Queensberry?
Or one of the marys three?
Or are you the lass of Ruchlaw hill,
Seeking Lord Gregory?'
'I'm not the Queen of Queensberry,
Nor one of the marys three;
But I am the bonny lass of Ruchlawhill,
Seeking Lord Gregory.'
'Awa, awa, ye fause thief,
I will not open to thee
Till you tell me the first token
That was tween you and me.'
'Do not you mind, Lord Gregory,
When we birled at the wine,
We changed the rings of our fingers,
And ay the best was mine?
'For mine was true and trusty goud,
But yours it was of tin;
Mine was of the true and trusty goud,
But yours was fause within.'
She turned about her bonny ship,
Awa then did she sail:
'The sun shall never shine on man
That made my heart so sare.'
Then up the old mother she got,
And wakened Lord Gregory:
'Awa, awa, ye fause gudeson,
A limmer was seeking thee.'
'It's woe be to you, witch-mother,
An ill death may you die!
For you might hae set the yet open,
And then hae wakened me.'
It's up he got, and put on his clothes,
And to the yet he ran;
The first sight of the ship he saw,
He whistled and he sang.
But whan the bonny ship was out o sight,
He clapped his hands and ran,
. . . . .
. . . . .
The first kirktoun he cam to,
He heard the death-bell ring,
The second kirktoun he cam to,
He saw her corpse come in.
'Set down, set down this bonny corpse,
That I may look upon;
If she died late for me last night,
I'll die for her the morn.
'Be merry, merry, gentlemen,
Be merry at the bread and wine;
For by the morn at this time o day
You'll drink as much at mine.'
The one was buried in Mary's isle,
The other in Mary's quire;
Out of the one there grew a thorn,
And out of the other a brier.
And aye they grew, and aye they blew,
Till their twa taps did meet;
And every one that passed thereby
Might see they were lovers sweet.

D[edit]

'O WHA will shoe my fu fair foot?
An wha will glove my han?
An wha will lace my middle gimp
Wi the new made London ban?
'Or wha will kemb my yallow hair,
Wi the new made silver kemb?
Or wha'll be father to my young bairn,
Till Love Gregor come hame?'
Her father shoed her fu fair foot,
Her mother glovd her han;
Her sister lac'd her middle gimp
Wi the new made London ban.
Her brother kembd her yallow hair,
Wi the new made silver kemb,
But the king o heaven maun father her bairn,
Till Love Gregor come hame.
'O gin I had a bony ship,
An men to sail wi me,
It's I would gang to my true-love,
Since he winna come to me.'
Her father's gien her a bonny ship,
An sent her to the stran;
She's tane her young son in her arms,
An turnd her back to the lan.
She had na been o the sea saillin
About a month or more,
Till landed has she her bonny ship
Near her true-love's door.
The night was dark, an the win blew caul,
An her love was fast asleep,
An the bairn that was in her twa arms
Fu sair began to weep.
Long stood she at her true-love's door,
An lang tirld at the pin;
At length up gat his fa'se mither,
Says, Wha's that woud be in?
'O it is Anny of Roch-royal,
Your love, come oer the sea,
But an your young son in her arms;
So open the door to me.'
'Awa, awa, you ill woman,
You've na come here for gude,
You're but a witch, or wile warlock,
Or mermaid o the flude.'
'I'm na a witch, or wile warlock,
Nor mermaiden,' said she;
'I'm but Fair Anny o Roch-royal;
O open the door to me.'
'O gin ye be Anny o Roch-royal,
As [I] trust not ye be,
What taiken can ye gie that ever
I kept your company?'
'O dinna ye mind, Love Gregor,' she says,
'Whan we sat at the wine,
How we changed the napkins frae our necks,
It's na sae lang sin syne?
'An yours was good, an good enough,
But nae sae good as mine;
For yours was o the cumbruk clear,
But mine was silk sae fine.
'An dinna ye mind, Love Gregor,' she says,
'As we twa sat at dine,
How we changed the rings frae our fingers,
But ay the best was mine?
'For yours was good, an good enough,
Yet nae sae good as mine;
For yours was of the good red gold,
But mine o the diamonds fine.
'Sae open the door now, Love Gregor,
An open it wi speed,
Or your young son that is in my arms
For cauld will soon be dead.'
'Awa, awa, you ill woman,
Gae frae my door for shame;
For I hae gotten another fair love,
Sae ye may hye you hame.'
'O hae you gotten another fair love,
For a' the oaths you sware?
Then fair you well now, fa'se Gregor,
For me you's never see mair.'
O heely, heely gi'd she back,
As the day began to peep;
She set her foot on good ship-board,
An sair, sair did she weep.
Love Gregor started frae his sleep,
An to his mither did say,
I dreamd a dream this night, mither,
That maks my heart right wae.
'I dreamd that Anny of Roch-royal,
The flowr o a' her kin,
Was standin mournin at my door,
But nane would lat her in.'
'O there was a woman stood at the door,
Wi a bairn intill her arms,
But I woud na lat her within the bowr,
For fear she had done you harm.'
O quickly, quickly raise he up,
An fast ran to the stran,
An there he saw her Fair Anny,
Was sailin frae the lan.
An 'Heigh, Anny!' an 'Hou, Anny!
O Anny, speak to me!'
But ay the louder that he cried Anny,
The louder roard the sea.
An 'Heigh, Anny!' an 'Hou, Anny!
O Anny, winna you bide?'
But ay the langer that he cried Anny,
The higher roard the tide.
The win grew loud, an the sea grew rough,
An the ship was rent in twain,
An soon he saw her Fair Anny
Come floating oer the main.
He saw his young son in her arms,
Baith tossd aboon the tide;
He wrang his hands, than fast he ran,
An plung'd i the sea sae wide.
He catchd her by the yallow hair,
An drew her to the strand,
But cauld an stiff was every limb
Before he reachd the land.
O first he kissd her cherry cheek,
An then he kissd her chin;
An sair he kissd her ruby lips,
But there was nae breath within.
O he has mournd oer Fair Anny
Till the sun was gaing down,
Then wi a sigh his heart it brast,
An his soul to heaven has flown.

E[edit]

'O WHA will shoe my fu fair foot?
And wha will glove my hand?
And wha will lace my middle jimp,
Wi the new made London band?
'And wha will kaim my yellow hair,
Wi the new made silver kaim?
And wha will father my young son,
Till Love Gregor come hame?'
'Your father will shoe your fu fair foot,
Your mother will glove your hand;
Your sister will lace your middle jimp
Wi the new made London band.
'Your brother will kaim your yellow hair,
Wi the new made silver kaim;
And the king of heaven will father your bairn,
Till Love Gregor come haim.'
'But I will get a bonny boat,
And I will sail the sea,
For I maun gang to Love Gregor,
Since he canno come hame to me.'
O she has gotten a bonny boat,
And sailld the sa't sea fame;
She langd to see her ain true-love,
Since he could no come hame.
'O row your boat, my mariners,
And bring me to the land,
For yonder I see my love's castle,
Closs by the sa't sea strand.'
She has taen her young son in her arms,
And to the door she's gone,
And lang she's knocked and sair she ca'd,
But answer got she none.
'O open the door, Love Gregor,' she says,
'O open, and let me in;
For the wind blaws thro my yellow hair,
And the rain draps oer my chin.'
'Awa, awa, ye ill woman,
You'r nae come here for good;
You'r but some witch, or wile warlock,
Or mer-maid of the flood.'
'I am neither a witch nor a wile warlock,
Nor mer-maid of the sea,
I am Fair Annie of Rough Royal;
O open the door to me.'
'Gin ye be Annie of Rough Royal-+-
And I trust ye are not she-+-
Now tell me some of the love-tokens
That past between you and me.'
'O dinna you mind now, Love Gregor,
When we sat at the wine,
How we changed the rings frae our fingers?
And I can show thee thine.
'O yours was good, and good enneugh,
But ay the best was mine;
For yours was o the good red goud,
But mine o the dimonds fine.
'But open the door now, Love Gregor,
O open the door I pray,
For your young son that is in my arms
Will be dead ere it be day.'
'Awa, awa, ye ill woman,
For here ye shanno win in;
Gae drown ye in the raging sea,
Or hang on the gallows-pin.'
When the cock had crawn, and day did dawn,
And the sun began to peep,
Then it raise him Love Gregor,
And sair, sair did he weep.
'O I dreamd a dream, my mother dear,
The thoughts o it gars me greet,
That Fair Annie of Rough Royal
Lay cauld dead at my feet.'
'Gin it be for Annie of Rough Royal
That ye make a' this din,
She stood a' last night at this door,
But I trow she was no in.'
'O wae betide ye, ill woman,
An ill dead may ye die!
That ye woudno open the door to her,
Nor yet woud waken me.'
O he has gone down to yon shore-side,
As fast as he could fare;
He saw Fair Annie in her boat,
But the wind it tossd her sair.
'Hey, Annie!' and 'How, Annie!
O Annie, winna ye bide?'
But ay the mair that he cried Annie,
The braider grew the tide.
And 'Hey, Annie!' and 'How, Annie!
Dear Annie, speak to me!'
But ay the louder he cried Annie,
The louder roard the sea.
The wind blew loud, the sea grew rough,
And dashd the boat on shore;
Fair Annie floats on the raging sea,
But her young son raise no more.
Love Gregor tare his yellow hair,
And made a heavy moan;
Fair Annie's corpse lay at his feet,
But his bonny young son was gone.
O cherry, cherry was her cheek,
And gowden was her hair,
But clay cold were her rosey lips,
Nae spark of life was there.
And first he's kissd her cherry cheek,
And neist he's kissed her chin;
And saftly pressd her rosey lips,
But there was nae breath within.
'O wae betide my cruel mother,
And an ill dead may she die!
For she turnd my true-love frae my door,
When she came sae far to me.'

F[edit]

'O WHA will lace my steys, mother?
O wha will gluve my hand?
O wha will be my bairn's father,
While my luve cums to land?'
'O sall I lace your steys, dochter,
O sall I gluve your hand;
And God will be your bairn's father,
While your luve cums to land.'
Now she's gard build a bonie schip,
Forbidden she wad nae be;
She's gane wi four score mariners,
Sailand the salt, salt sea.
They had nae saild but twenty legues,
Bot twenty legues and three,
When they met wi the ranke robers,
And a' their companie.
'Now whether are ye the Queen hersell?
For so ye weel micht bee,
Or are ye the lass o the Ruch Royal,
Seekand Lord Gregorie?'
'O I am neither the Queen,' she sed,
'Nor sick I seem to be;
But I am the lass o the Ruch Royal,
Seekand Lord Gregorie.'

  • * * * *

And when she saw the stately tower,
Shynand sae cleere and bricht,
Whilk proud defies the jawing wave,
Built on a rock a hicht,
Sche sailed it round, and sailed it sound,
And loud, loud cried she,
'Now break, now break, ye fairy charms,
And let the prisoner free.'

G[edit]

IT fell on a Wodensday,
Love Gregory's taen the sea,
And he has left his lady Janet,
And a weary woman was she.
But she had na been in child-bed
A day but barely three,
Till word has come to Lady Janet
Love Gregory she would never see.
She's taen her mantle her middle about,
Her cane into her hand,
And she's awa to the salt-sea side,
As fast as she could gang.
'Whare will I get a curious carpenter,
Will make a boat to me?
I'm going to seek him Love Gregory,
In's lands where eer he be.'
'Here am I, a curious carpenter,
Will make a boat for thee,
And ye may seek him Love Gregory,
But him ye'll never see.'
She sailed up, she sailed down,
Thro many a pretty stream,
Till she came to that stately castle,
Where Love Gregory lay in.
'Open, open, Love Gregory,
O open, and lat me in;
Your young son is in my arms,
And shivering cheek and chin.'
'Had awa, ye ill woman,
Had far awa frae me;
Ye're but some witch, or some warlock,
Or the mermaid, troubling me.
'My lady she's in Lochranline,
Down by Lochlearn's green;
This day she wadna sail the sea,
For goud nor warld's gain.
'But if ye be my lady Janet,
As I trust not well ye be,
Come tell me oer some love-token
That past 'tween thee an me.'
'Mind on, mind on now, Love Gregory,
Since we sat at the wine;
The rings that were on your fingers,
I gied thee mine for thine.
'And mine was o the good red goud,
Yours o the silly tin,
And mine's been true, and very true,
But yours had a fause lynin.
'But open, open, Love Gregory,
Open, and let me in;
Your young son is in my arms,
He'll be dead ere I win in.'
'Had awa, ye ill woman,
Had far awa frae me;
Ye're but some witch, or some warlock,
Or the mermaid, troubling me.
'But if ye be my lady Janet,
As I trust not well ye be;
Come tell me o'er some love-token
That past tween thee and me.'
'Mind on, mind on, Love Gregory,
Since we sat at the wine;
The shifts that were upon your back,
I gave thee mine for thine.
'And mine was o the good holland,
And yours o the silly twine,
And mine's been true, and very true,
But yours had fause lynin.'

  • * * * *

H[edit]

'OH who'll comb my yellow locks,
With the brown berry comb?
And who'll be the child's father,
Until Gregory comes home?'
'OH . . . . .
And God will be the child's father,
Until Gregory comes home.'

  • * * * *

'The dew wets my yellow locks,
The rain wets my skin,
The babe's cold in my arms,
Oh Gregory, let me in!'
'Oh if you be the lass of Aughrim,
As I suppose you not to be,
Come tell me the last token
Between you and me.'
     Refrain:The dew wets, etc.
'Oh Gregory, don't you remember
One night on the hill,
When we swapped rings off each other's hands,
Sorely against my will?'
Mine was of the beaten gold,
Yours was but black tin.'
     Refrain:The dew wets, etc.
'Oh if you be the lass of aughrim,
As I suppose you not to be,
Come tell me the last token
Between you and me.'
     Refrain:The dew wets, etc.
'Oh Gregory don't you remember
One night on the hill,
When we swapped smocks off each other's backs,
Sorely against my will?
Mine was of the holland fine,
Yours was but Scotch cloth.'
     Refrain:The dew wets, etc.
'Oh if you be the lass of Aughrim,
As I suppose you not to be,
Come tell me the last token
Between you and me.'
     Refrain:The dew wets, etc.
'Oh Gregory, don't you remember,
In my father's hall,
When you had your will of me?
And that was worse than all.'
. . . . .
. . . . .
     Refrain:The dew wets, etc.

I[edit]

'OH open the door, Lord Gregory,
Oh open, and let me in;
The rain rains on my scarlet robes,
The dew drops oer my chin.'
'If you are the lass that I lovd once,
As I true you are not she,
Come give me some of the tokens
That past between you and me.'
'Ah wae be to you, Gregory,
An ill death may you die!
You will not be the death of one,
But you'll be the death of three.
'Oh don't you mind, Lord Gregory,
'Twas down at yon burn-side
We changed the ring of our fingers,
And I put mine on thine?'

J[edit]

'O WHA will shoe my pretty little foot?
And wha will glove my hand?
And who will lace my middle jimp
Wi this lang London whang?
'And wha will comb my yellow, yellow hair,
Wi this fine rispen kame?
And wha will be my bairn's father,
Till Lord Gregory come hame?'

K[edit]

'O OPEN the door, Love Gregory,
O open, and let me in;
The wind blows through my yellow hair,
And the dew draps oer my chin.'