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Gude Wallace

No: 157; variant: 157B

  1. ‘I WISH we had a king,’ says Wallace, ‘That Scotland might not want a head; In England and in Scotland baith, I’m sure that some have sowed ill seed.’
  2. Wallace he oer the water did luke, And he luked law down by a glen, And he was aware of a gay lady, As she was at the well washing.
  3. ‘Weel may ye save, fair lady!’ he says, ‘Far better may ye save and see! If ye have ony tidings to tell, I pray cum tell them a’ to me.’
  4. ‘I have no tidings you to tell, And as few tidings do I ken; But up and to yon ostler-house Are just gane fifteen gentlemen.
  5. ‘They now are seeking Gude Wallace, And ay they’re damning him to hang;’ ‘Oh God forbid,’ says Wallace then, ‘I’m sure he is a true Scotsman.
  6. ‘Had I but ae penny in my pocket, Or in my company ae baubee, I woud up to yon ostler-house, A’ these big gentlemen to see.’
  7. She pat her hand into her pocket, She powd out twenty shillings and three: ‘If eer I live to come this way, Weel payed shall your money be.’
  8. He leaned him twafold oer a staff, Sae did he twafold oer a tree, And he’s gane up to the ostler-house, A’ these fine gentlemen to see.
  9. When he cam up among them a’, He bad his benison be there; The captain, being weel buke-learnd, Did answer him in domineer.
  10. ‘Where was ye born, ye cruked carl, Or in what town, or what countree?’ ‘O I was born in fair Scotland, A cruked carl although I be.’
  11. The captain sware by the root of his sword, Saying, I’m a Scotsman as weel as thee; Here’s twenty shillings of English money To such a cruked carl as thee, If thou’ll tell me of that Wallace; He’s ay the creature I want to see.
  12. ‘O hawd your hand,’ says Wallace then, ‘I’m feard your money be not gude; If ‘twere as muckle and ten times mair, It should not bide another bode.’
  13. He’s taen the captain alang the chaps, A wat he never chawed mair; The rest he sticked about the table, And left them a’ a sprawling there.
  14. ‘Gude wife,’ he said, ‘For my benison, Get up and get my dinner dight; For it is twa days till an end Syne I did taste ane bit of meat.’
  15. Dinner was not weel made ready, Nor yet upon the table set, When fifteen other Englishmen Alighted all about the yate.
  16. ‘Come out, come out now, Wallace,’ they say, ‘For this is the day ye are to dee; Ye trust sae mickle in God’s might, And ay the less we do fear thee.’
  17. The gude wife ran but, the gude man ran ben, They pat the house all in a swither; Five sune he sticked where he stude, And five he smitherd in a gutter.
  18. Five he chac’d to the gude green-wood, And hanged them a’ out-oer a pin; And at the morn at eight o’clock He din’d with his men at Lough-mabin.