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Lamkin

No: 93; variant: 93F

  1. SAID my lord to his ladye, as he mounted his horse, (bis) Take care of Long Lankyn, who lies in the moss. (bis)
  2. Said my lord to his ladye, as he rode away, Take care of Long Lankyn, who lies in the clay.
  3. Let the doors be all bolted, and the windows all pinned, And leave not a hole for a mouse to creep in.
  4. Then he kissed his fair ladye, and he rode away; He must be in London before break of day.
  5. The doors were all bolted, and the windows were pinned, All but one little window, where Long Lankyn crept in.
  6. ‘Where is the lord of this house?’ said Long Lankyn: ‘He is gone to fair London,’ said the false nurse to him.
  7. ‘Where is the ladye of this house?’ said Long Lankyn: ‘She’s asleep in her chamber,’ said the false nurse to him.
  8. ‘Where is the heir of this house?’ said Long Lankyn: ‘He’s asleep in his cradle,’ said the false nurse to him.
  9. ‘We’ll prick him, and prick him, all over with a pin, And that will make your ladye to come down to him.’
  10. So she pricked him and pricked, all over with a pin, And the nurse held a basin for the blood to run in.
  11. ‘Oh nurse, how you sleep! Oh nurse, how you snore! And you leave my little son Johnstone to cry and to roar.’
  12. ‘I’ve tried him with suck, and I’ve tried him with pap; So come down, my fair ladye, and nurse him in your lap.’
  13. ‘Oh nurse, how you sleep! Oh nurse, how you snore! And you leave my little son Johnstone to cry and to roar.’
  14. ‘I’ve tried him with apples, I’ve tried him with pears; So come down, my fair ladye, and rock him in your chair.’
  15. ‘How can I come down, ‘tis so late in the night, When there’s no candle burning, nor fire to give light?’
  16. ‘You have three silver mantles as bright as the sun; So come down, my fair ladye, by the light of one.’
  17. ‘Oh spare me, Long Lankyn, oh spare me till twelve o’clock, You shall have as much gold as you can carry on your back.’
  18. ‘If I had as much gold as would build me a tower,’ . . . . . . . . . .
  19. ‘Oh spare me, Long Lankyn, oh spare me one hour, You shall have my daughter Betsy, she is a sweet flower.’
  20. ‘Where is your daughter Betsy? she may do some good; She can hold the silver basin, to catch your heart’s blood.’
  21. Lady Betsy was sitting in her window so high, And she saw her father, as he was riding by.
  22. ‘Oh father, oh father, don’t lay the blame on me; ‘Twas the false nurse and Long Lankyn that killed your ladye.’
  23. Then Long Lankyn was hanged on a gallows so high, And the false nurse was burnt in a fire just by.