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Blow Away the Morning Dew

No: 112; variant: 112C

  1. THERE was a knight was drunk with wine A riding along the way, sir, And there he did meet with a lady fine, And among the cocks of hay, sir.
  2. One favour he did crave of her, And askd her to lay her down, sir, But he had neither cloth nor sheet, To keep her from the ground, sir.
  3. 'There is a great dew upon the grass, And if you shoud lay me down, sir, You would spoil my gay clothing, That has cost me many a pound, sir.'
  4. 'I have a cloak of scarlet red, I'll lay it under you, love, So you will grant me my request That I shall ask of you, love.'
  5. 'And if you'll go to my father's hall, That is moated all round about, sir, There you shall have your will of me, Within, sir, and without, sir.
  6. 'Oh yonder stands my milk-white steed, And among the cocks of hay, sir; If the king's pinner should chance to come, He'll take my steed away, sir.'
  7. 'I have a ring upon my finger, It's made of the finest gold, love, And it shall serve to fetch your steed Out of the pinner's fold, love.'
  8. 'And if you'll go to my father's house, Round which there's many a tree, sir, There you shall have your chamber free, And your chamberlain I'll be, sir.'
  9. He sate her on a milk-white steed, Himself upon another, And then they rid along the way, Like sister and like brother.
  10. But when she came to her father's house, Which was moated all round about, sir, She slipd herself within the gate, And she lockd the knight without, sir.
  11. 'I thank you, kind knight, for seeing me here, And bringing me home a maiden, sir, But you shall have two of my father's men For to set you as far back again, sir.'
  12. He drew his sword out of his scabbard, And whet it upon his sleeve, sir, Saying, Cursed be to evry man That will a maid believe, sir!
  13. She drew her handkerchief out of her pocket, And threw it upon the ground, sir, Saying, Thrice cursed be to evry maid That will believe a man, sir!
  14. We have a tree in our garden, Some call it of rosemary, sir; There's crowing-cocks in our town, That will make a capon of you, sir.
  15. We have a flower in our garden, Some call it a marygold, sir, And he that would not when he might, He shall not when he would, sir.
  16. But if you chance for to meet a maid, A little below the town, sir, You must not fear her gay cloathing, Nor the wrinkling of her gown, sir.
  17. And if you chance for to meet a maid, A little below the hill, sir, You need not fear her screeking out, For she quickly will lye still, sir.
  18. The baffld knight was by the lass Ingeniously outwitted, And since that time it came to pass He was again well fitted.
  19. As he was riding cross a plain, In boots, spurs, hat and feather, He met that lady fair again; They talkd a while together.
  20. He said, Tho you did serve me so, And cunningly decoy me, Yet now, before you further go, I must and will enjoy thee.
  21. 'twas near a spacious river's side, Where rushes green were growing, And Neptune's silver streams did glide, Four fathom waters flowing.
  22. The lady blushd like scarlet red, And trembled at this stranger: 'How shall I guard my maidenhead From this approaching danger!'
  23. With a lamenting sigh, said she, To dye I now am ready; Must this dishonour fall on me? A most unhappy lady!
  24. He from his saddle did alight, In gaudy rich attire, And cried, I am a noble knight, Who do your charms admire.
  25. He took the lady by the hand, Who seemingly consented, And woud no more disputing stand: She had a plot invented.
  26. How she might baffle him again, With much delight and pleasure, And eke unspotted still remain, With her pure virgin treasure.
  27. 'Look yonder, good sir knight, I pray: Methinks I do discover, Well mounted on a dapple-grey, My true, entire lover.'
  28. The knight, he standing on the brink Of the deep floating river, Thought she, Thou now shalt swim or sink; Choose which you fancy rather.
  29. Against his back the lady run; The waters strait he sounded; He cry'd out, Love, what have you done! Help! help! or I am drowned.
  30. Said she, Sir knight, farewel, adieu; You see what comes of fooling; That is the fittest place for you, Whose courage wanted cooling.
  31. 'Love help me out, and I'll forgive This fault which you've committed; 'No, no,' says she, 'Sir, as I live, I think you're finely fitted.'
  32. She rid home to her father's house, For speedy expedition, While the gay knight was soakd like souce, In a sad wet condition.
  33. When he came mounted to the plain He was in rich attire, Yet when he back returnd again He was all muck and mire. Yet when he back returnd again He was all muck and mire.
  34. A solemn vow he there did make, Just as he came from swiming, He'd love no lady, for her sake, Nor any other women.
  35. The baffld knight was foold once more, You'll find by this pleasant ditty, For she whose charms he did adore Was wonderful sharp and witty.
  36. Returning from her father's park, Just close by a summer bower, She chanc'd to meet her angry spark, Who gave her a frowning lower.
  37. The thoughts of what she twice had done Did cause him to draw his rapier, And at the lady then he run, And thus he began to vapour:
  38. 'You chousd me at your father's gate, Then tumbld me into the river; I seek for satisfaction straight; Shall I be a fool forever?'
  39. He came with resolution bent That evening to enjoy her, And if she did not give consent, That minute he would destroy her.
  40. 'I pray, sir knight, and why so hot Against a young silly woman? Such crimes as these might be forgot; For merry intrigues are common.'
  41. 'What! do you count it mirth,' he cry'd, 'To tumble me in and leave me? What if I drowned there had dy'd? A dangerous jest, believe me.
  42. 'Well, if I pardon you this day Those injuries out of measure, It is because without delay I mean to enjoy the pleasure.'
  43. 'Your suit,' she said, 'is not deny'd, But think of your boots of leather, And let me pull them off,' she cry'd, 'Before we lye down together.'
  44. He set him down upon the grass, And violets so sweet and tender; Now by this means it came to pass That she did his purpose hinder.
  45. For having pulld his boots half-way, She cry'd, I am now your betters; You shall not make of me your prey; Sit there, like a thief in fetters.
  46. Now finding she had servd him so, He rose and began to grumble; Yet he could neither stand nor go, But did like a cripple tumble.
  47. The boots stuck fast, and would not stir; His folly she soon did mention, And laughing said, I pray, kind sir, How like you my new invention?
  48. My laughing fit you must excuse; You are but a stingless nettle; You'd neer a stood for boots or shooes, Had you been a man of mettle.
  49. Farewel, sir knight, 'tis almost ten; I fear neither wind nor weather; I'll send my father's serving-men To pull off your boots of leather.
  50. She laughed outright, as well she might, With merry conceits of scorning, And left him there to sit all night, Untill the approaching morning.
  51. The fourth part of the baffld knight The lady hath fairly acted; She did his love and kindness slight, Which made him almost distracted.
  52. She left him in her father's park, Where nothing but deer could hear him; While he lay rouling in the dark, There's never a soul came near him.
  53. Until the morning break of day, And being warm summer weather, A shepherd chanc'd to come that way, Who pulld on his boots of leather.
  54. Then mounting on his milk-white steed, He, shaking his ears, was ready, And whip and spur he rid with speed To find out this crafty lady.
  55. 'If once this lady I come nigh She shall be released by no man: Why shoud so brave a knight as I Be foold by a silly woman!
  56. 'Three times she has affronted me, In crimes which I cannot pardon; But if I an't revengd,' said he, 'Let me not be worth a farthing.
  57. 'I value not her beauty fair, Tho once I did dote upon her; This trusty sword shall now repair My baffled, blasted honour.'
  58. Unto her father's house he came, Which every side was moated; The fair sweet youthful charming dame, His angry brows she noted.
  59. Thought she, I'll have the other bout, And tumble him in the river; And let the Devil help him out, Or there he shall soak for ever.
  60. He will not let me live at rest, Although I have often foild him; Therefore once more, I do protest, With flattering I'll beguile him.
  61. The bridge was drawn, the gates lockd fast, So that he could no ways enter; She smil'd to him, and cry'd at last, Sir knight, if you please to venture,
  62. A plank lies over the moat hard by, Full seventeen foot in measure; There's no body now at home but I; Therefore we'll take our pleasure.
  63. This word she had no sooner spoke, But straight he was tripping over; The plank was sawd, and snapping broke; He provd an unhappy lover.