PR Website

The Twa Sisters

No: 10; variant: 10P

  1. THERE were twa ladies in a bower, Hey my bonnie Nannie O The old was black and the young ane fair. And the swan swims bonnie O
  2. Once it happened on a day The auld ane to the young did say,
  3. The auld ane to the young did say, ‘Will you gae to the green and play?’
  4. ‘O sister, sister, I daurna gang, For fear I file my silver shoon.’
  5. It was not to the green they gaed, But it was to the water of Tweed.
  6. She bowed her back and she’s taen her on, And she’s tumbled her in Tweed mill-dam.
  7. ‘O sister, O sister, O tak my hand, And I’ll mak you heir of a’ my land.’
  8. ‘O sister, O sister, I’ll no take your hand, And I’ll be heir of a’ your land.’
  9. ‘O sister, O sister, O tak my thumb, And I’ll give you my true-love John.’
  10. ‘O sister, O sister, I’ll no tak your thumb, And I will get your true-love John.’
  11. Aye she swattered and aye she swam, Until she came to the mouth of the dam.
  12. The miller’s daughter went out to Tweed, To get some water to bake her bread.
  13. In again she quickly ran: ‘Here’s a lady or a swan in our mill-dam.’
  14. Out went the miller and his man And took the lady out of the dam.
  15. They laid her on the brae to dry; Her father’s fiddler then rode by.
  16. When he this lady did come near, Her ghost to him then did appear.
  17. ‘When you go to my father the king, You’ll tell him to burn my sister Jean.
  18. ‘When you go to my father’s gate, You’ll play a spring for fair Ellen’s sake.
  19. ‘You’ll tak three links of my yellow hair, And play a spring for evermair.’