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Little Musgrave and Lady Barnard

No: 81; variant: 81B


  1. . . . . . . . . . . ‘Ffor this same night att [Bucklesfeildberry] Litle Musgreue is in bed with thy wife.’

  2. ‘If it be trew, thou litle foote-page, This tale thou hast told to mee, Then all my lands in Buckle[s]feildberry I’le freely giue to thee.
  3. ‘But if this be a lye, thou little foot-page, This tale thou hast told to mee, Then on the highest tree in Bucklesfeildberry All hanged that thou shalt bee.’
  4. Saies, Vpp and rise, my merrymen all, And saddle me my good steede, For I must ride to Bucklesfeildberry; God wott I had neuer more need!
  5. But some they whistled, and some th’z sunge, And some they thus cold say, When euer as Lord Barnetts horne blowes, ‘Away, Musgreue, away!’
  6. ‘Mie thinkes I heare the throstlecocke, Me thinkes I heare the iay, Me thinkes I heare Lord Barnetts horne, Away, Musgreue, away!’
  7. ‘But lie still, lie still, Litle Musgreue, And huddle me from the cold, For it is but some sheaperds boy, Is whistling sheepe ore the mold.
  8. ‘Is not thy hauke vpon a pearch, Thy horsse eating corne and hay? And thou, a gay lady in thine armes, And yett thou wold goe away!’
  9. By this time Lord Barnett was come to the dore, And light vpon a stone, And he pulled out three silver kayes, And opened the dores euery one.
  10. And first he puld the couering downe, And then puld downe the sheete; Saies, How now? How now, Litle Musgreue? Dost find my gay lady sweet?
  11. ‘I find her sweete,’ saies Litle Musgreue, ‘The more is my greefe and paine;’ . . . . . . . . . . .
  12. . . . . . . . . . ‘Soe haue I done the fairest lady That euer wore womans weede.
  13. ‘Soe haue I done a heathen child, Which ffull sore greiueth mee, For which Ile repent all the dayes of my life, And god be with them all three!’