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The mountain Bulll he bent his brows,
Then lost was banner, spear, and shield,
At Sempach in the fight,
Hold many an Austrian knight.
It was the Archduke Leopold,
So lordly would he ride,
And they slew him in his pride.
The heifer said unto the bull,
"And shall I not complain? There came a foreign nobleman
To milk me on the plain.
"One thrust of thine outrageous horn
Has gall'd the knight so sore,
To range our glens no more."
An Austrian noble left the stour,
And fast the flight 'gan take;
At Sempach on the lake.
I A pun on the Urus, or wild-bull, which gives name to the Canton of Uri.
He and his squire a fisher call'd,
"For love, or meed, or charity,
Their anxious call the fisher heard,
And, glad the meed to win,
And took the flyers in.
And while against the tide and wind Hans stoutly row'd his way,
The fisher's back was to them turn'd.
He 'whelm'd the boat, and as they strove,
"Now, drink ye deep, my gentle sirs,
"Two gilded fishes in the lake
Their silver scales may much avail,
It was a messenger of woe Has sought the Austrian land:"Ah! gracious lady, evil news!My lord lies on the strand.
"At Sempach, on the battle-field,
Now would you know the minstrel wight, Who sings of strife so stern,
A merry man was he, I wot,
The night he made the lay, Returning from the bloody spot,
Where God had judged the day.
THE NOBLE MORINGER.
AN ANCIENT BALLAD. ,
TRANSLATED FROM THE GERMAN.
The original of these verses occurs in a collection of German popular songs, entitled, Sammlung Deustcher Volkslieder, Berlin, 1807, published by Messrs. Busching and Von der Hagen, both, and more especially the last, distinguished for their acquaintance with the ancient popular poetry and legendary history of Germany.
In the German Editor's notice of the ballad, it is stated to have been extracted from a manuscript Chronicle of Nicolaus Thomann, chaplain to Saint Leonard in Weisenhorn, which bears the date 1533; and the song is stated by the author to have been generally sung in the neighbourhood at that early period. Thomann, as quoted by the German Editor, seems faithfully to have believed the event he narrates. He quotes tombstones and obituaries to prove the existence of the personages of the ballad, and discovers that there actually died, on the 11th May, 1349, a Lady Von Neuffen, Countess of Marstetten, who was, by birth, of the house of Moringer. This lady he supposes to have been Moringer's daughter, mentioned in the ballad. He quotes the same authority for the death of Berckhold Von Neuffen, in the same year. The editors, on the whole, seem to embrace the opinion of Professor Smith, of Ulm, who, from the language of the ballad, ascribes its date to the 15th century.
1 [The translation of the Noble Moringer appeared originally in the Edinburgh Annual Register for 1816, (published in 1819.) It was composed during Sir Walter Scott's severe and alarming illness of April, 1819, and dictated, in the intervals of exquisite pain, to his daughter Sophia, and his friend William -ed. J
The legend itself turns on an incident not peculiar to Germany, and which, perhaps, was not unlikely to happen, in more instances than one, when crusaders abode long in the Holy Land, and their disconsolate dames received no tidings of their fate. A story very similar in circumstances, but without the miraculous machinery of Saint Thomas, is told of one of the ancient Lords of Haigh-hall, in Lancashire, the patrimonial inheritance of the late Countess of Balcarras; and the particulars are represented on stained glass upon a window in that ancient manor-house.1
1 [See Introduction to "The Betrothed," Waverly Novels.] VOL. VI. 14