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* You may thank God, (then said the lord,)
And four men in the ship, (quoth he,) That we are safely come ashore,
• Sith you never had such an enemy; • That is, Henry Hunt, and Peter Simon,
· William Horsely, and Peter's son ; "Therefore reward them for their pains,
For they did service in their turn.'
To the merchant then the king did say,
• In lieu of what he hath from thee ta’en, I'll give to thee a noble a day,
Sir Andrew's whistle, and his chain: • To Peter Simon a crown a day;
And half a crown to Peter's son; And that was for a shot so gay,
Which bravely brought Sir Andrew down.
Horsely, I will make thee a knight,
• And in Yorkshire thou shalt dwell; • Lord Howard shall Earl Bury hight,
* For this title he deserveth well. Seven shillings to our English men,
• Who in this fight did stoutly stand; * And twelve pence a day to the Scots till they
Come to my brother king's high land.'
Is there never a man in all Scotland,
From the highest estate to the lowest degree,
Scotlànd is so full of treachery?
Yes, there is a man in Westmoreland,
And Johny Armstrong they do him call;
Yet he keeps eight score men within his hall.
He has horses and harness for them all,
And goodly steeds that be milk-white,
With hats and feathers all alike.
The king he writes a loving letter,
And with his own hand so tenderly,
To come and speak with him speedily.
When John he looked this letter upon,
Good lord, he look'd as blithe as a bird in a tree: 'I was never before a king in my life,
My father, my grandfather, nor none of us three ,
* The best account of Armstrong, his conduct, capture, and execution, (for, alas ! instead of ending his life so gallantly as he is made to do in the song, he was ignobly hanged upon a gallows) is given by Lindsay of Pitscottie, in bis History of Scotland. (Edin. 1727, folio.) He is likewise noticed by Buchanan.
* But seeing we must go before the king,
• Lord, we will go most gallantly; "Ye shall every one have a velvet coat,
Laid down with golden laces three :
And every one shall have a scarlet cloak,
Laid down with silver laces five;
With hats and feathers all alike.'
But when John he went to Giltnock-hall,
The wind it blew hard, and full fast it did rain:
Now Johny is to Edinburgh gone,
With his eight score men so gallantly,
With their bucklers and swords hanging to their knee.
But when John came the king before,
With his eight score men so gallant to see; The king he mov'd his bonnet to him,
He thought he had been a king as well he.
*O pardon, pardon, my sovereign liege,
Pardon for my eight score men and me; For my name it is Johny Armstrong, * And a subject of yours, my liege;' said he.
Away with thee, thou false traitor,
'No pardon will I grant to thee ; 'But, to-morrow morning by eight of the clock,
'I will hang up thy eight score men and thee.'
Then Johny look'd over his left shoulder,
And to his merry men thus said he,
Then John pull’d out his nut-brown sword,
And it was made of metal so free,
John had taken his head from his fair body.
“Come, follow me, my merry men all,
“We will scorn one foot for to fly, • It shall ne'er be said we were hung like dogs,
We will fight it out most manfully.'
Then they fought on like champions bold,
For their hearts were sturdy, stout, and free, Till they had kill'd all the king's good guard;
There was none left alive but two or three.
But then rose up all Edinburgh,
They rose up by thousands three;
And run him through the fair body.
Said John,' Fight on, my merry men all,
'I am a little wounded, but am not slain; * I will lay me down for to bleed a while,
Then I'll rise and fight with you again.'
Then they fought on like madmen all,
Till many a man lay dead upon the plain;
That every man would there be slain.
the cha and the
So there they fought courageously,
Till most of them lay dead there and slain; But little Musgràve that was his foot-page,
With his bonny Grissel got away unta’en.
But when he came to Giltnock-hall,
The lady spied him presently: 'What news, what news, thou little foot-page,
• What news from thy master and his company?'
My news is bad, lady, he said,
• Which I do bring, as you may see; ‘My master Johny Armstrong is slain,
And all his gallant company.'
Yet thou art welcome home, my bonny Grissèl,
* Full oft thou hast been fed with corn and hay, * But now thou shalt be fed with bread and wine,
* And thy sides shall be spur'd no more, I say.'
O then bespake his little son,
As he sat on his nurse's knee, If ever I live to be a man,
‘My father's death reveng'd shall be."
• Mr. R. H. Evans, in a late edition of his father's collection of Old Ballads, observes that Mr. Walter Scott has condescended to borrow the last three lines of this stanza in his “ Lay of the Last Minstrel :' but it seems to have escaped Mr. E.’s farther observation, that they are marked by Mr. Scott as borrowed lines.]