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Northumberland Betrayed by Douglas

No: 176; variant: 176A

  1. NOW list and lithe, you gentlemen, And I’st tell you the veretye, How they haue dealt with a banished man, Driuen out of his countrye.
  2. When as hee came on Scottish ground, As woe and wonder be them amonge! Ffull much was there traitorye The wrought the Erle of Northumberland.
  3. When they were att the supper sett, Beffore many goodly gentlemen, The ffell a fflouting and mocking both, And said to the Erle of Northumberland:
  4. ‘What makes you be soe sad, my lord, And in your mind soe sorrowffullye? In the north of Scottland to-morrow there’s a shooting, And thither thou’st goe, my Lord Percye.
  5. ‘The buttes are sett, and the shooting is made, And there is like to be great royaltye, And I am sworne into my bill Thither to bring my Lord Pearcy.’
  6. ‘I’le giue thee my hand, Douglas,’ he sayes, ‘And be the faith in my bodye, If that thou wilt ryde to the worlds end, I’le ryde in thy companye.’
  7. And then bespake the good ladye, Marry a Douglas was her name: ‘You shall byde here, good English lord; My brother is a traiterous man.
  8. ‘He is a traitor stout and stronge, As I’st tell you the veretye; For he hath tane liuerance of the Erle, And into England he will liuor thee.’
  9. ‘Now hold thy tounge, thou goodlye ladye, And let all this talking bee; Ffor all the gold that’s in Loug Leuen, William wold not liuor mee.
  10. ‘It wold breake truce betweene England and Scottland, And freinds againe they wold neuer bee, If he shold liuor a bani[s]ht erle, Was driuen out of his owne countrye.’
  11. ‘Hold your tounge, my lord,’ shee sayes, ‘There is much ffalsehood them amonge; When you are dead, then they are done, Soone they will part them freinds againe.
  12. ‘If you will giue me any trust, my lord, I’le tell you how you best may bee; You’st lett my brother ryde his wayes, And tell those English lords, trulye,
  13. ‘How that you cannot with them ryde, Because you are in an ile of the sea; Then, ere my brother come againe, To Edenborrow castle I’le carry thee.
  14. ‘I’le liuor you vnto the Lord Hume, And you know a trew Scothe lord is hee, For he hath lost both land and goods In ayding of your good bodye.’
  15. ‘Marry, I am woe, woman,’ he sayes, ‘That any freind fares worse for mee; For where one saith it is a true tale, Then two will say it is a lye.
  16. ‘When I was att home in my [realme], Amonge my tennants all trulye, In my time of losse, wherin my need stoode, They came to ayd me honestlye.
  17. ‘Therfore I left a many a child ffatherlese, And many a widdow to looke wanne; And therfore blame nothing, ladye, But the woeffull warres which I began.’
  18. ‘If you will giue me noe trust, my lord, Nor noe credence you will giue mee, And you’le come hither to my right hand, Indeed, my lorid, I’le lett you see.’
  19. Saies, I neuer loued noe witchcraft, Nor neuer dealt with treacherye, But euermore held the hye way; Alas, that may be seene by mee!
  20. ‘If you will not come your selfe, my lord, You’le lett your chamberlaine goe with mee, Three words that I may to him speake, And soone he shall come againe to thee.’
  21. When Iames Swynard came that lady before, Shee let him see thorrow the weme of her ring How many there was of English lords To wayte there for his master and him.
  22. ‘But who beene yonder, my good ladye, That walkes soe royallye on yonder greene?’ ‘Yonder is Lord Hunsden, Iamye,’ she saye[d], ‘Alas, hee’le doe you both tree and teene!’
  23. ‘And who beene yonder, thou gay ladye, That walkes soe royallye him beside?’ ‘Yond is Sir William Drurye, Iamy,’ shee sayd, ‘And a keene captain hee is, and tryde.’
  24. ‘How many miles is itt, thou good ladye, Betwixt yond English lord and mee?’ ‘Marry, thrise fifty mile, Iamy,’ shee sayd, ‘And euen to seale and by the sea.
  25. ‘I neuer was on English ground, Nor neuer see itt with mine eye, But as my witt and wisedome serues, And as [the] booke it telleth mee.
  26. ‘My mother, shee was a witch woman, And part of itt shee learned mee; Shee wold let me see out of Lough Leuen What they dyd in London cytye.’
  27. ‘But who is yonde, thou good laydye, That comes yonder with an osterne fface?’ ‘Yond’s Sir Iohn Forster, Iamye,’ shee sayd; ‘Methinkes thou sholdest better know him then I.’ ‘Euen soe I doe, my goodlye ladye, And euer alas, soe woe am I!’
  28. He pulled his hatt ouer his eyes, And, Lord, he wept soe tenderlye! He is gone to his master againe, And euen to tell him the veretye.
  29. ‘Now hast thou beene with Marry, Iamy,’ he sayd, ‘Euen as thy tounge will tell to mee; But if thou trust in any womans words, Thou must refraine good companye.’
  30. ‘It is noe words, my lord,’ he sayes; ‘Yonder the men shee letts me see, How many English lords there is Is wayting there for you and mee.
  31. ‘Yonder I see the Lord Hunsden, And hee and you is of the third degree; A greater enemye, indeed, my Lord, In England none haue yee.’
  32. ‘And I haue beene in Lough Leven The most part of these yeeres three: Yett had I neuer noe out-rake, Nor good games that I cold see.
  33. ‘And I am thus bidden to yonder shooting By William Douglas all trulye; Therfore speake neuer a word out of thy mouth That thou thinkes will hinder mee.’
  34. Then he writhe the gold ring of his ffingar And gaue itt to that ladye gay; Sayes, That was a legacye left vnto mee In Harley woods where I cold bee.
  35. ‘Then ffarewell hart, and farewell hand, And ffarwell all good companye! That woman shall neuer beare a sonne Shall know soe much of your priuitye.’
  36. ‘Now hold thy tounge, ladye,’ hee sayde, ‘And make not all this dole for mee, For I may well drinke, but I’st neuer eate, Till againe in Lough Leuen I bee.’
  37. He tooke his boate att the Lough Leuen, For to sayle now ouer the sea, And he hath cast vpp a siluer wand, Saies, Fare thou well, my good ladye! The ladye looked ouer her left sholder; In a dead swoone there fell shee.
  38. ‘Goe backe againe, Douglas!’ he sayd, ‘And I will goe in thy companye, For sudden sicknesse yonder lady has tane, And euer, alas, shee will but dye!
  39. ‘If ought come to yonder ladye but good, Then blamed sore that I shall bee, Because a banished man I am, And driuen out of my owne countrye.’
  40. ‘Come on, come on, my lord,’ he sayes, ‘And lett all such talking bee; There’s ladyes enow in Lough Leuen And for to cheere yonder gay ladye.’
  41. ‘And you will not goe your selfe, my lord, You will lett my chamberlaine go with mee; Wee shall now take our boate againe, And soone wee shall ouertake thee.’
  42. ‘Come on, come on, my lord,’ he sayes, ‘And lett now all this talking bee; Ffor my sister is craftye enoughe For to beguile thousands such as you and mee.’
  43. When they had sayled fifty myle, Now fifty mile vpon the sea, Hee had fforgotten a message that hee Shold doe in Lough Leuen trulye: Hee asked, how ffarr it was to that shooting That William Douglas promised mee.
  44. ‘Now faire words makes fooles faine, And that may be seene by thy master and thee; Ffor you may happen think itt soone enoughe When-euer you that shooting see.’
  45. Iamye pulled his hatt now ouer his browe, I wott the teares fell in his eye; And he is to his master againe, And ffor to tell him the veretye.
  46. ‘He sayes fayre words makes fooles faine, And that may be seene by you and mee, Ffor wee may happen thinke itt soone enoughe When-euer wee that shooting see.
  47. ‘Hold vpp thy head, Iamye,’ the erle sayd, ‘And neuer lett thy hart fayle thee; He did itt but to proue thee with, And see how thow wold take with death trulye.’
  48. When they had sayled other fifty mile, Other fifty mile vpon the sea, Lord Peercy called to him, himselfe, And sayd, Douglas, what wilt thou doe with mee?
  49. ‘Looke that your brydle be wight, my lord, That you may goe as a shipp att sea; Looke that your spurres be bright and sharpe, That you may pricke her while shee’le awaye.’
  50. ‘What needeth this, Douglas,’ he sayth, ‘That thou needest to ffloute mee? For I was counted a horsseman good Before that euer I mett with thee.
  51. ‘A ffalse Hector hath my horsse, And euer an euill death may hee dye! And Willye Armestronge hath my spurres And all the geere belongs to mee.’
  52. When the had sayled other fifty mile, Other fifty mile vpon the sea, The landed low by Barwicke-side; A deputed lord landed Lord Percye.