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The Wylie Wife of the Hie Toun Hie

No: 290; variant: 290B

  1. IT fell about the Martinmas time, When the nobles were drinking wine, And the matter of their discourse it was, 'O the ladies they go fine:'
  2. Up then spake a brave gentleman, The best in the companie; 'The bonniest lass that eer I saw, She dwells in the hie town hie.
  3. 'I wad give a guinea of red gold, Sae wad I a pint of wine, To onie of the hostler-wives That wad wyle to me the bonnie lassie in.'
  4. Up then spake the hoslter's wife, And an ill death may she die! 'An ye'll gie me a guinea of gold, I will wyle the bonnie lassie in to thee.'
  5. The hostler's wife stood on the stair-head, To see what she could see, And there she saw this fair creature, Coming down frae the hie town hie.
  6. 'Come in, come in, my bonnie, bonnie lass, Come in and speak with me; Come in and drink a glass of wine, That's new come aff the raging sea.'
  7. 'My father's out upon the plain, And I am waiting his incoming; And I'm a girl so neat and trim That I'm afraid of your merry men.'
  8. 'My merry men are all gone out, And they will not be in till nine, And, if ye would my favour win, Come in and drink a glass of wine.'
  9. Sae cunningly she wyld her in, And sae cunningly she led her round, Till she wyld her to the room where he was, And she locked the door the bonnie lass behind.
  10. First he kissd her cherry cheeks, And than he kissd her cherry chin, And than he kissd her ruby lips, Saying, Indeed ye're a weel-faurd thing.

  1. 'O since ye've got your will o me, And brought me unto public shame, I pray, kind sir, ye'll marry me, Or that ye'll tell me what's your name.'
  2. 'If I tell my name to you, bonnie lassie, It's mair than ever I telld ane; But I will tell to you, bonnie lassie; I am an earl's second son.
  3. 'I am an earl's second son, My father has more children than me; My eldest brother he heirs the land, And my father he sent me to the sea.'
  4. He put his hand into his pocket, And he gave her sixty guineas and three, Saying, Fare thee well, my lovely young creature, Ye'll never get mair of me.
  5. As she went down through Edinburgh streets, The bonnie bells as they did ring, 'Farewell, fareweel, my bonnie, bonnie lassie, Ye've got the clod that winna cling.'

  1. He hadna been ae week at the sea, Not a week but only five, Till the king made him a captain sae brave, And he made the bonnie lassie his wife.