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Tam Lin

No: 39; variant: 39F

  1. SHE’S taen her petticoat by the band, Her mantle owre her arm, And she’s awa to Chester wood, As fast as she could run.
  2. She scarsely pulled a rose, a rose, She scarse pulled two or three, Till up there starts Thomas On the Lady Margaret’s knee.
  3. She’s taen her petticoat by the band, Her mantle owre her arm, And Lady Margaret’s gane hame agen, As fast as she could run.
  4. Up starts Lady Margaret’s sister, An angry woman was she: ‘If there ever was a woman wi child, Margaret, you are wi!’
  5. Up starts Lady Margaret’s mother, An angry woman was she: ‘There grows ane herb in yon kirk-yard That will scathe the babe away.’
  6. She took her petticoats by the band, Her mantle owre her arm, And she’s gane to yon kirk-yard As fast as she could run.
  7. She scarcely pulled an herb, an herb, She scarse pulled two or three, Till up starts there Thomas Upon this Lady Margret’s knee.
  8. ‘How dare ye pull a rose?’ he says, ‘How dare ye break the tree? How dare ye pull this herb,’ he says, ‘To scathe my babe away?
  9. ‘This night is Halloweve,’ he said, ‘Our court is going to waste, And them that loves their true-love best At Chester bridge they’ll meet.
  10. ‘First let pass the black,’ he says, ‘And then let pass the brown, But when ye meet the milk-white steed, Pull ye the rider down.
  11. ‘They’ll turn me to an eagle,’ he says, ‘And then into an ass; Come, hold me fast, and fear me not, The man that you love best.
  12. ‘They’ll turn me to a flash of fire, And then to a naked man; Come, wrap you your mantle me about, And then you’ll have me won.’
  13. She took her petticoats by the band, Her mantle owre her arm, And she’s awa to Chester bridge, As fast as she could run.
  14. And first she did let pass the black, And then let pass the brown, But when she met the milk-white steed, She pulled the rider down.
  15. They turned him in her arms an eagle, And then into an ass; But she held him fast, and feared him not, The man that she loved best.
  16. They turned him into a flash of fire, And then into a naked man; But she wrapped her mantle him about, And then she had him won.
  17. ‘O wae be to ye, Lady Margaret, And an ill death may you die, For you’ve robbed me of the bravest knight That eer rode in our company.’