Child's Ballads/26

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The Three Ravens[edit]

There were three ravens sat on a tree,
      Refrain: Downe a downe, hay down, hay downe
There were three ravens sat on a tree,
      Refrain: With a downe
There were three ravens sat on a tree,
They were as black as they might be.
      Refrain: With a downe derrie, derrie, derrie, downe, downe
The one of them said to his mate,
‘Where shall we our breakfast take?’
‘Downe in yonder green field,
There lies a knight slain under his shield.
‘His hounds they lie downe at his feet,
So well they can their master keep.
‘His hawks they fly so eagerly,
There’s no fowle dare him come nie.’
Downe there comes a fallow doe,
As great with yong as she might goe.
She lift up his bloudy hed,
And kist his wounds that were so red.
She got him up upon her backe,
And carried him to earthen lake.
She buried him before the prime,
She was dead herself ere even-song time.
God send every gentleman,
Such hawks, such hounds, and such a leman.