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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,
In the dark glen, so deep below,
The herds of plunder'd England low,
And bought with danger, blows, and blood.
The moon-light raid, the morning fight;
And still his brows the helmet press’d,
Were white as Dinlay’s spotless snow 1
Before their father's band ;
Harken, ladye to the tale,
How thy sires won fair Esltdale.—
Earl Morton was lord of that valley fair,
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--
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;
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.»-
To Eskdale soon he spurr'd amain,
And with him five hundred riders has ta'en.
To meet with the Galliard and all his train.
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.
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,
Then had you seen a gallant shock,
When saddles were emptied, and lances broke!
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,
' 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,
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
And pierced his shoulder through and through.
And Watt of Tinlinn, much aghast,
Rode back to Branksome fiery fast.
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,
But louder still the clamour grew,
And louder still the minstrcls blew,
His mcn-at~arms, with glaive and spear,
S0 rode they forth in fair array,
Till full their lcngthen'd lines display;
Now every English eye, intent,
On Branksome‘s armed towers was bent:
Glcam'd axe, and spear, and partizan;
The seething pitch and molten lead
I Powder-fluilts. 1 Ancient pieces uf artillery.
Armed he rode, all save the head, . ,_
Forced him, with chasten'd fire, to prance,
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)
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? -
As scare one swallow from her nfl,
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.
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.‘
He prick'd to Stapleton on Leven,
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
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.
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;
Then, if thy lords their purpose urge,
Take our defiance loud and high:
' An nlylum for outlaws. 1 Border lresuon.
' Note of llilnult. ‘