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Prince Heathen

No: 104; variant: 104A

  1. LADY MARGERY MAY sits in her bower, Sewing at her seem; By there comes a heathen knight, From her her maidenhead has tane.
  2. He has put her in a tower strong, With double locks on fifty doors: ‘Lady Margery May, will you ga now?’ ‘O ye heathen knight, not yet for you.
  3. ‘I am asking, you heathen knight; What I am asking will you grant to me? Will ye let one of your waitmen A drink of your well bring to me?’
  4. ‘Meat nor drink you shall never get, Nor out of that shall you never come, Meat nor drink shall you never get, Until you bear to me daughter or son.’
  5. Thus time drew on, and further on, For travail came this young lady to; She travailed up, so did she down, But lighter could she never be.
  6. ‘An asking, an asking, you heathen knight; An asking will you grant to me? Will you give me a scread of silk, For to row your young son wi?’
  7. He took the horse-sheet in his hand, The tears came twinkling down: ‘Lady Margaret May, will ye ga now?’ ‘O ye heathen knight, not yet for you.’
  8. ‘I’ll wash my young son with the milk, I will dry my young son with the silk; For hearts will break, and bands will bow; So dear will I love my lady now!’