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An aged knight, to danger steel‘d,
With many a moss-trooper, came on;

And azure in a golden field,

The stars and crescent graced his shield,

Without the bend of Murdieston. (1 1)

Wide lay his lands round Oakwood tower,
And wide round haunted Castle-Ower;
High over Borthwick's mountain-flood
His wood-emhosom'd mansion stood;

In the dark glen, so deep below,

The herds of plunder'd England low,
His bold retainers‘ daily food,

And bought with danger, blows, and blood.
Marauding chief !.his sole delight

The moon-light raid, the morning fight;
Not even the Flower of Yarrow's charms,
In youth, might tame his rage for arms;
And still, in age, l1e spurn'd at rest,

And still his brows the helmet press’d,
Albeit the blanched locks below

Were white as Dinlay’s spotless snow 1
Five stately warriors drew the sword

Before their father's band ;
A braver knight than Harden’s lord
Ne'er belted on a brand.

Scotts of Eskdale, a stalwart hand, (12)
Game trooping down the Todshawhill;
By the sword they won their land,
And by the sword they hold it still.

Harken, ladye to the tale,

How thy sires won fair Esltdale.—

Earl Morton was lord of that valley fair,
The Beattisons were his vassals there.

The earl was gentle, and mild of mood,

The vassals were warlike, and fierce and rude; Higliof heart, and haughty of word,

Little they reck'd of a tame liege-lord.

The earl to fair Eskdalc came,

Homage and scignory to claim:

Of Gilbert the Galliard a heriot‘ he sought, Saying, 1 Give thy best steed, as a vassal ought.n -—\( Dear to me is mybonny white steed,

Oft has he help'd me at pinch of need;

Lord and earl though thou be, I trow,

I can rein Bucksfoot better than thou.a--
Word on word gave fuel to lire,

Till so highly blazed the Bealtisons' ire,

But that the earl his flight had ta'cn,

The vassals there their lord had slain.

Sore he plied both whipiand spur,

As he urged his steed through Eskdale muir;
And it fell down a weary weight,

Just on the threshold of Hranksome gate.


The earl was a wrathfnl man to see,

Full fain avenged would he be.

Beshrew thy heart, of the l3eattisons' clan

If thou leavest on Esk a landed man;

But spare Woodl<errick's lands alone,

For he lent me his horse to escape upon.»-
A glad man then was Branksome bold,
Down he flung him the purse of gold;

To Eskdale soon he spurr'd amain,

And with him five hundred riders has ta'en.
He left his merry-men in the mist of the hill,
And bade them hold them close and still;
And alone he wended to the plain,

To meet with the Galliard and all his train.
To Gilbert the Galliard thus he said :—

tt Know thou me for thy liege-lord and head ; Deal not with me as with Morton tame,

For Scotts play best at the roughest game.
Give me in peace my heriot due,

Thy bonny white steed, or thou shalt rue.

If my horn I three times wind,

Eskdale shall long have the sound in mind. »

xu. ' '‘

Loudly the Beattison laugh'd in scorn;

-4 Little care we for thy winded horn.

Ne’er shall it be the Galliar<l's lot

To yield his steed to a haughty Scott.

Wend thou to Branksome back on foot,

Willi rusty spur and miry hoot.»

He blew his bugle so loud and hoarse,

That the dun deer started at far Craikcross;

He blew again so loud and clear,

Through the gray mountain-mist there did lances


And the third blast rang with such a din,

That the echoes answer’d from Pentoun-linn,
And all his riders came lightly in.

Then had you seen a gallant shock,

When saddles were emptied, and lances broke!
For each scornful word the Galliard had said,

A Beattison on the field was laid.

His own good sword the chicftain drew,

And he bore the Galliard through and through ; Where the Bcattison's blood mix'd with the rill, The Galliard's Haugh, men call it still.

The Scotts have scatter'd the Beattison clan,

In Eskdale they left but one landed man.

The valley of Eske, from the mouth to the source, Was lost and won for that bonny white horse.

XIII. Whitslade the Hawk, and Headshaw came, And warriors more than I may name; From Yarrow-clengh to llindhaugh-swair, From Woodhonselie to Chester-glen, Tro0p'd man and horse, and how and spear; Their gathering word was llellenden. (13) And better hearts o'er Border sod To siege or rescue never rode. The Ladye n1ark'd the aids come in, And high her heart of pride arose; She bade her youthful son attend, That he might know his father's friend, And learn to face his foes. u The boy is ripe to look on war; I saw him draw a cross-how stiff, And his true arrow struck afar‘ The raven's nest upon the cliff; I

In haste to llranksoines lord he spoke,
Saying-—u Take these traitors to thy yoke;
For a cast of hawks, and a purse of gold,
All Eskdale I ’ll sell thee, to have and hold 1

' The feudal superior, in certain cases. was entith-‘ll 10 the Ni!

horse of the vassal, in name of Ileriet, or Hercield.


The red cross, on a southern breast,
Is broader than the raven's nest;
Thou, Whitslade, shalt teach him his weapon to
And o'er him hold his father's shield. »

XIV. Well may you think, the wily page Cared not to face the Ladye sage. Ile counterfeited childish fear, And shriek’d and shed full many a tear, And moan'd and plain‘d in manner wild. The attendants to the Ladye told, Some fairy sure had changed the child, That wont to be so free and bold. Then wrathful was the noble dame; She blush’d blood-red for very shame; K Hence! ere the clan his faintness view; Hence with the weakling to Bucclcuch!— Watt Tinlinn, thou shalt be his guide To Ranglcburn's lonely sidelSure some fell fiend has cursed our line, That coward should e’er be son of mine! -—


A heavy task Watt Tinlinn had

To guide the counterfeited lad.

Soon as the palfrey felt tlte weight

Of that ill-omen'tl ellish freight,

He bolted, sprung, and-rear'd amain,

Nor heeded bit, not ctIb, nor rein.

It cost Watt Tinlinn mickle toil

To drive him but a Scottish mile;

But, as a shallow brook they cross'd,

The elf, amid the running stream,

His figure changed, like form in dream,

And fled, and shouted, ~ Lost! lost! lost!

Full fast the urchin ran and laugh'd,

But faster still a cloth—yard shaft
Whistled from startled Tinlinn's yew,

And pierced his shoulder through and through.
Although the imp might not be slain,
And though the wound soon heal'd again,
Yet, as he ran, he yell'd for pain ;

And Watt of Tinlinn, much aghast,

Rode back to Branksome fiery fast.

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Behind, in close array, and fast,

The Kendal archers, all in green, Obedient to the bugle blast,

Advancing from the wood were seen. To back and guard the archer band, Lord Daere's bill-men were at hand :

A hardy race, on Irthing bred,

With kirtles white, and crosses red,

Array'd beneath the banner tall,

That stream'd o'er Acre's conqner'd wall;

And minstrcls, as they march'd in order,

Play’d “Noble Lord Dacre, he dwells on the Border.»

XVIII. Behind the English bill and bow, The mercenaries, firm and slow, Moved on to fight, in dark array, By Conrad led of Wolfenstein. Who brought the band from distant Rhine, And sold their blood for foreign pay;

The camp their home, their law the sword, They knew no country, own'd no lord. ([4) They were not arm'd like England's sons, But bore the levin-darting guns;

Buff coats, all frounced and ’broidered o'er, And morsing-horns ' and scarfs they wore; Each better knee was bared, to aid

The warriors in the escalztde;

And, as they marched, in rugged tongue,
Sounds of Teutonic feuds they sung.


But louder still the clamour grew,

And louder still the minstrcls blew,
\Vhcn from beneath the green-wood tree
Rode forth Lord Howard's chivalry;

His mcn-at~arms, with glaive and spear,
Brought up the battles glittering rear.
There many a youthful knight, full keen
To gain his spurs, in arms was seen; ‘
With favour in his crest, or glove,
Memorial of his ladye-love.

S0 rode they forth in fair array,

Till full their lcngthen'd lines display;
Then call‘d a halt, and made a stand,
And cried, ~< St George for merry England ! »


Now every English eye, intent,

On Branksome‘s armed towers was bent:
S0 near they were, that they might know
The straining harsh of each cross-bow;
On battlement and bartizan

Glcam'd axe, and spear, and partizan;
Falcon and culver,a on each tower,
Stood prompt their deadly hail to shower;
And flashing armour frequent broke
From eddying whirls of sable smoke,
Where, upon tower and turret-head,

The seething pitch and molten lead
Rcek’d, like a witch's cauldron red.
While yet they gaze, the bridges fall,
The wicket opcs, and from the wall
Rides forth the hoary seneschal.

I Powder-fluilts. 1 Ancient pieces uf artillery.

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Armed he rode, all save the head, . ,_
His white beard o'er his breast-plate spread;
Unbroke by age, erect his seat, "
He ruled his eager courser's gait;

Forced him, with chasten'd fire, to prance,
And, high curvetting, slow advance:

In sign of truce, his better hand

Display'd a peeled willow wand;

His squire, attending in the rear,

Bore high a gauntlet on a spear. (t5)
When they espied him riding out,

Lord Howard and Lord Dacre stout

Sped to the front of their array, '

To hear what this old knight should say.


- Ye English warden lords, of you Demands the Ladye of Bucclcuch, , Why, 'gainst the truce of Border-tide, ln hostile guise ye dare to ride,

With Kendal bow, and Gilslaud brand, And all you mercenary hand,

Upon the bounds of fair Scotland? -
My Ladye redes you, swith return;
And, if but one poor straw you burn,
Or do our towers uo much molest

As scare one swallow from her nfl,
St Mary! but we 'll light a brand,

Shall warm your heartlts in Cumberland.» I V v

"' xxm. ]

A wrathful man was Dacre's lord,

But calmer Howard took the word :—

11 May ’t please thy dame, Sir Seneschal, To seek the castle's outward wall,

Our pursuivant-at-arms shall show, Both why we came, and when we go.»The message sped, the noble dame

To the wall's outward circle came; Each chief around lean'd on his spear, To see the pursuivant appear

All in Lord Howard's livery dress'd,

The lion argent'deck'd his breast;

He led a boy of blooming hue

O sight to meet a mother's view!

It was the heir of great Buccleuch.
Obeisance meet the herald made,

And thus his mastefs will he said:


n It irks, high dame, my noble lords, 'Gainst ladye Fair to draw their swords; But yet they may not tamely see,

All through the western wardenry,

Your law-contemning kinsmen ride,

And burn and spoil the Border side;

And ill besecms your rank and birth

To make your towers a llemen's-firth.‘
We claim from thee William of Deloraine,
That he may suffer march-treason pain;' (I6)
lt was but last: St Cuthberfs even

He prick'd to Stapleton on Leven,

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it Say to your lords of high emprize,

Who war on women and on boys,

Ihat either William of Deloraine

Will cleanse him, by oath, of march-treason

stain, ([7)

Or else he will the combat take

’Gainst Musgrave, for his honour’s sake.

No knight in Cumberland so good,

But William may count with him kin and blood.
Knighthood he took of Douglas’ sword, (I 8)
When English blood swell'd Ancram ford; (19)
And but that Lord Dacre’s steed was wight,
And bore him ably in the flight,

Himself had seen him dubb‘d a knight,

For the young heir of Branks0me’s line,

God be his aid, and God be mine;

Through me no friend shall meet his doom;
Here, while I live, no foe finds room.

Then, if thy lords their purpose urge,

Take our defiance loud and high:
Our slogan is their lyke-wake-" dirge,
Our moat the grave where they shall lie.-—

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' An nlylum for outlaws. 1 Border lresuon.

1 Plundered.

' Note of llilnult. ‘
! Lykc-wake, the watching a corpse previous to interment,

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