The Cruel Brother
No: 11; variant: 11F
- THERE did three knights come from the west,
With the high and the lily oh
And these three knights courted one lady.
As the rose was so sweetly blown
- The first knight came was all in white,
And asked of her, if she’d be his delight.
- The next knight came was all in green,
And asked of her, if she’d be his queen.
- The third knight came was all in red,
And asked of her, if she would wed.
- ‘Then have you asked of my father dear,
Likewise of her who did me bear?
- ‘And have you asked of my brother John?
And also of my sister Anne?’
- ‘Yes, I have asked of your father dear,
Likewise of her who did you bear.
- ‘And I have asked of your sister Anne,
But I’ve not asked of your brother John.’
- Far on the road as they rode along,
There did they meet with her brother John.
- She stooped low to kiss him sweet,
He to her heart did a dagger meet.
- ‘Ride on, ride on,’ cried the serving man,
‘Methinks your bride she looks wondrous wan.’
- ‘I wish I were on yonder stile,
For there I would sit and bleed awhile.
- ‘I wish I were on yonder hill,
There I’d alight and make my will.’
- ‘What would you give to your father dear?’
‘The gallant steed which doth me bear.’
- ‘What would you give to your mother dear?’
‘My wedding shift which I do wear.
- ‘But she must wash it very clean,
For my heart’s blood sticks in evry seam.’
- ‘What would you give to your sister Anne?’
‘My gay gold ring and my feathered fan.’
- ‘What would you give to your brother John?’
‘A rope and gallows to hang him on.’
- ‘What would you give to your brother John’s wife?’
‘A widow’s weeds, and a quiet life.’