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« But tell me now,” said brave Dunbar, i just quoted, which is a work of much higher an“ True Thomas, tell now unto me,
tiquity. What man shall rule the isle Britain, Even from the north to the southern sea?”
PART III.-MODERN. " A French queen shall bear the son,
WHEN seven years roore had come and gone, Shall rule all Britain to the sea:
Was war through Scotland spread,
And Ruberslaw showed high Dunyon!
His beacon blazing red.
Then all by bonny Coldingknow, 2 « The waters worship shall his race,
Pitched palliouns took their room,
And crested helms, and spears a rowe.
Glanced gaily through the broom.
The Leader, rolling to the Tweed,
Resounds the ensenzie;*
They roused the deer from Caddenhead, contemporaries, as the author of the celebrated
To distant Torwoodlee.3 romance of Sir Tristrem. Of this or.ce admired The feast was spread in Ercildoune, poem only one copy is known to exist, which is in In Learmont's high and ancient hall; the Advocates' Library. The author, in 1804, pub And there were knights of great renown, lished a small edition of this curious work, which, And ladies laced in pall. if it does not revive the reputation of the bard of Nor lacked they while they sat at dine. Erceldoune, is at least the earliest specimen of
The music nor the tale, Scottish poetry hitherto published. Some account
Nor goblets of the blood-red wine, of this romance has already been given to the
Nor mantling quaighst of ale. world in Mr. Ellis's Specimens of Ancient Poetry, vol. I, p. 165, iii, p. 410; a work, to which our
True Thomas rose, with harp in hand, predecessors and our posterity are alike obliged;
When as the feast was done; the former, for the preservation of the best selected
(In minstrel strife, in Fairy land, examples of their poetical taste; and the latter, for
The elfin harp he won.) a history of the English language, which will only Hushed were the throng, both limb and tongus cease to be interesting with the existence of our And harpers for envy pale; mother-tongue, and all that genius and learning And armed lords leaned on their swords, have recorded in it. It is sufficient here to men And harkened to the tale. tion, that, so great was the reputation of the ro
In numbers high, the witching tale mance of Sir Tristrem, that few were thought
The prophet poured along; capable of reciting it after the manner of the au
No after baru might e'er availt thor;-a circumstance alluded to by Robert de
Those numbers to prolong.
Yet fragments of the lofty strain
Float down the tide of years,
As, buoyant on the stormy main,
A parted wreck appears.
He sung king Arthur's table round:
The warrior of the lake;
How courteous Gawaine met the wound,
And bled for ladies' sake. teenth century, penes Mr. Douce of London, containing a French metrical romance of Sir Tristrem,
But chief, in gentle Tristrem's praise, that the work of our Thomas the Rhymer was
The notes melodious swell; known, and referred to, by the minstrels of Nor
Was pone excelled, in Arthur's days, mandy and Bretagne. Having arrived at a part of The knight of Lionelle. the romance, where reciters were wont to differ! For Marke, his cowardly uncle's right, in the mode of telling the story, the French bard A venomed wound he bore; expressly cites the authority of the poet of Ercel When fierce Morholde he slew in fight, doune:
Upon the Irish shore.
No art the poison might withstand;
No medicine could be found.
Till lovely Isolde's lily hand
Had probed the rankling wound.
With gentle hand and soothing tongue,
She bore the leeches part;
And, while she o'er his sick bed hung,
He paid her with his heart.
O fatal was the gift, I ween!
For, doomed in evil tide, Edinburgh MS., is totally different from the vo The maid must be rude Cornwall's queen, luminous romance in prose, originally compiled His cowardly uncle's bride. on the same subject by Rusticien de Puise, and Analysed by M. de Tressan; but agrees in every
• Ensenzie-War-cry, or gathering word.
+ Quaight-Wooden cups, composed of staves hooped essential particular with the metrical performance together." I See introduction to this ballad.
Their loves, their woes, the gifted bard
The elfin harp his neck around, In fairy tissue wore.
In minstrel guise, he hung; Where lords, and knights, and ladies bright, And on the wind, in doleful sound, In gay confusion strove.
Its dying accents rung. The Garde Joyeuse, amid the tale,
Then forth he went; yet turned him oft High reared its glittering head;
To view his ancient hall; And Avalon's enchanted vale
On the gray tower, in lustre soft, In all its wonders spread.
The autumn moonbeams fall. Brengwain was there, and Segramore,
And Leader's waves, like silver sheen, And fiend-born Merlin's gramarye;
Danced shimmering in the ray: Of that famed wizard's mighty lore,
In deepening mass, at distance seen, O who could sing but he?
Broad Soltra's mountains lay. Through many a maze the winning song
“ Farewell, my father's ancient tower! In changeful passion led,
A long farewell,” said he: Till bent at length the listening throng
“ The scene of pleasure, pomp, or pova, O'er Tristrem's dying bed.
Thou never more shall be. His ancient wounds their scars expand;
“ To Learmont's name no foot of earth With agony his heart is wrung;
Shall here again belong, O where is Isolde's lily hand.
And on thy hospitable hearth And where her soothing tongue?
The hare shall leave her young. She comes, she comes! like flash of flame
“ Adieu! adieu!” again he cried, Can lovers' footsteps fly:
All as he turned him roun': She comes, she comes! she only came
“ Farewell to Leader's silver tide! To see her Tristrem die.
Farewell to Ercildoun!” She saw him die: her latest sigh
The hart and hind approached the place, Joined in a kiss his parting breath:
As lingering yet he stood: The gentlest pair, that Britain bare,
And there, before lord Douglas' face, United are in death.
With them he crossed the food. There paused the harp; its lingering sound
Lord Douglas leaped on his berry brown steed, Died slowly on the ear;
And spurred him the Leader o'er; The silent guests still bent around,
But, though he rode with lightning speed, For still they seemed to hear.
He never saw them more. Then wo broke forth in murmurs weak,
Some said to hill, and some to glen, Nor ladies heaved alone the sigh:
Their wonderous course had been; But, half ashamed, the rugged cheek
But ne'er in haunts of living men Did many a gauntlet dry.
Again was Thornas seen. On Leader's stream, and Learmont's tower,
NOTE TO PART I. The mists of evening close:
l. she pu'd an apple frae a tree, &c.-r. 319. In camp, in castle, or in bower,
The traditional commentary upon this ballad Each warrior sought repose.
informs us, that the apple was the produce of the Lord Douglas, in his lofty tent,
fatal tree of knowledge, and that the garden was Dreamed o'er the woful tale;
the terrestrial paradise. The repugnance of ThoWhen footsteps light, across the bent,
mas to be debarred the use of falsehood, when he The warrior's ears assail.
might find it convenient, has a comic effect. He starts, he wakes; “ What, Richard, ho!
APPENDIX. Arise, my page, arise
The reader is here presented, from an old, and What venturous wight, at dead of night, unfortunately an imperfect MS., with the undouble Dare step where Douglas lies!”
ed original of Thomas the Rhymer's intrigue with Then forth they rushed: by Leader's tide,
the queen of Faery. It will afford great amuseA selcouth* sight they see,
ment to those, who would study the nature of traA hart and hind pace side by side,
ditional poetry, and the changes effected by oral As white as snow on Fairnalie.
tradition, to compare this ancient romance with
the foregoing ballad. The same incidents are Beneath the moon, with gesture proud, narrated, even the expression is often the same, They stately move and slow;
yet the poems are as different in appearance, as if Nor scare they at the gathering crowd.
the older tale had been regularly and systematiWho marvel as they go.
cally modernized by a poet of the prerent day. To Learmont's tower a message sped,
• Incipit Prophesia Thome de Erseldoun. As fast as page might run;
In a lande as I was lent,
In the gryking of the day, And Thomas started from his bed,
Ay alone as I went, And soon his cluthes did on.
In Huntle bankys me for to play:
I saw the throstyl, and the jay, First he woxe pale, and then he woxe red;
Ye mawes movyde of her song, Never a word he spake but three:
Ye wodwale sang notes gay, « My sand is run; my thread is spun;
That al the wod about range.
In that longyng as I lay,
I was war of a lady gay,
Come rydyng ouyr a fair le;
Zogh I suld sitt to doomysday, With my tong to wrabbe and wry, Certanly all hyr aray, It beth neuyr diseryuyd for me, Hyr palfra was dappyll gray, Sycke on say neuer none, As the son in somers day, All abowte that lady shone; Hyr sadel was of a rewel bone, A semly sight it was to se, Bryht with mony a precyous stone, And compasyd all with crapste; Stones of oryens gret plente, Her hair about her hede it hang, She roue ouer the farnyle. A while she blew a while she sang, Her girths of nobil silke they were, Her boculs were of beryl stone, Sadyll and brydill war --: With sylk and sendel about bedone, Hyr patyrel was of a pall fyne, And hyr eroper of the arase, Hyr brydil was of gold fyne, On euery syde forsothe hong bells thre, Hyr brydil reynes --A semly syzt ---Crop and patyrel--In every joynt ---She led thre grew hounds in a leash, And ratches cowpled by her ran; She bar an horn about her halse, And undir her gyrdil meny flene. Thomas lay and sa--In the bankes of --He says yonder is Mary of Might, That bar the child that died for me, Certes bot I may speke with that lady Myd my hert will breke in three; I schal me hye with all my might, Hyr to mete at Eldyn tree. Thomas rathly up he rase, And ran ouer mountayn hye, If it be sothe the story says, He met her euyn at Eldyn tre. Thomas knelyd down on his kne Undir nethe the grenewood spray, And sayd, Lovely lady, thou rue on me Queen of heaven as you well may be; But I am a lady of another countrie, If I be pareld most of prise, I ride after the wild fee, My ratches rinnen at my devys. If thou be pareld most of prise, And rides a lady in strang foly, Lovely lady, as thou art wise, Giue you me leue to lig ye by. Do way, Thomas, that were foly, I pray ye, Thomas, late me be, That sin will fordo all my bewtie: Lovely lady, rewe on me, And euer more I shall with ye dwell, Here my trowth I plyght to thee, Where you beleues in heuyn or hell. Thomas, and you myght lyge me by, Undir nethe this grene wode spray, Thou would tell full hastely, That thou had layn by a lady gay. Lady, I mote lyg by the, Undir nethe the greene wode tre, For all the gold in chrystenty, Suld you neuer be wryede for me. Man on molde you will me marre, And yet bot you may haf you will, Trow you well, Thomas, you cheuyest ye warre; For all my bewtie wilt you spill. Down ly shtyd that lady bryzt, Undir nethe the grene wode spray, And as ye story sayth full ryzt, Seuvo tymes by her he lay. She seyd, man, you lygte thi play, What berde in bouyr may dele with thee, That maries me all this long day; I pray ye, Thomas, lat me be. Thomas stode up in the stede, And hehelde the lady gay, Her heyre hang downe about hyr hede, The tone was blak, the other gray, Her eyn semyt onte before was gray, Her gay elethyng was all away,
Thomas sawe much more in that place,
lection of Scottish ballads and songs, has ar. entire Than I can descryve,
copy of this ancient poem, with all the collations. Til on a day alas, alas, My lovelye ladye sayd to me,
The lacuna of the former edition have been sup Busk ye, rhomas, you must agayn,
plied from his copy.]
NOTES TO PART III.
1. And Ruberslaw showed high Dunyon.-P. 325. And sayd, lowely ladye, lat ma be,
Ruberslaw and Duyon are two high hills above For I say ye certainly here Haf I be bot the space of dayes three.
Jedburgh. Sothly, Thomas, as I telle ye,
2. Then all by bonny Coldingknow.-P. 325. You hath been here thre yeres, And here you may no longer be;
An ancient tower near Ercildoun, belonging to And I sal tele ye a skele,
a family of the name of Home. One of Thomas's To-morrowe of helle ye foule fende
prophecies is said to have run thus: Amang our folke shall chuse his fee: For you art a larg man and an hende,
Vengeance, vengeance! when and where? Trowe you wele he will chuse thee,
On the house of Coldingknow, now and ever mair. For all the golde that may be, .
The spot is rendered classical by its having given Sal you not be betrayed for me, And thairfor sal you hens wend.
name to the beautiful melody, called the Broom She broght him euyn to Eldyn tre,
o' the Cowdenknows. Under nethe the grene wode spray,
3. They roused the deer from Caddenhead, In Huntle bankes was fayr to be,
To distant Torwoodlee.-P. 325.
| Torwoodlee and Caddenhead are places in SelThere hathe my facon:
kirkshire. Fare wele, Thomas, I wende my way.
4. How courteous Gawaine met the wound.-P. 325. The elfin queen, after restoring Thomas to See in the Fabliarx of Monsier le Grande, eleearth, pours forth a string of prophecies, in which gantly translated by the late Gregory Way, esq., we distinguish references to the events and per-| the tale of the Knight and the Sword. sonages of the Scottish wars of Edward III. The
5. As white as snow on Fairnalie.-P. 326. battles of Dupplin and Halidon are mentioned,
ed, An ancient seat upon the Tweed, in Selkirkand also black Agnes, countess of Dunbar. There
shire. In a popular edition of the first part of Thom is a copy of this poem in the museum in the ca
smas the Rhymer, the fairy queen thus addresses thedral of Lincolo, another in the collection of hi
him: Peterborougb, but unfortunately they are all in an
Gin ye wad meet wi' me again, imperfect state. Mr. Jamieson, in his curious col Gang to the bonnie banks of Faimale.
Larold the Dauntless:
| Retort, and air pump, threatening frogs and mice, There is a mood of mind we all have known, (Murders disguised by philosophic name,)
On drowsy eve, or dark and low'ring (lay, And much of trifling grave, and much of buxom When the tired spirits lose their sprightly tone,
game. And nought can chase the lingering hours away. | Then of the books, to catch thy drowsy glance Dull on our soul falls fancy's dazzling ray,
Compiled, what bard the catalogue may quote! And wisdom holds his steadier torch in vain, Plays, poems, novels, never read but once;Obscured the painting seems, mistuned the lay, But not of such the tale fair Edgeworth wrote, Nor dare we of our listless load complain,
That bears thy name, and is thine antidote; For who for sympathy may seek that cannot tell And not of such the strain by Thomson sung, of pain?
Delicious dreams inspiring by his note, The jolly sportsn an knows such drearihood, What time to indolence his harp he strung: When bursts in deluge the autumnal ruin,
Oh! might my lay be ranked that happier list Clouding that morn which threats the heath-cock's among! brood;
Each hath his refuge whom thy cares assail. Of such, in summer's drought, the anglers plain, For me, I love my study-fire to trim, Who hope the soft mild southern shower in vain; And con right vacantly some idle tale,
But, more than all, the discontented fair, Displaying on the couch each listless limb, Whom father stern, and sterner aunt, restrain Till on the drowsy page the lights grow dim, From county ball, or race occuring rare,
And doubtful slumber half supplies the theme; While all her friends around their vestments gay While antique shapes of knight and giant grim, prepare.
Damsel and dwarf, in long procession gleam, Ennui!-or, as our mothers called thee, Spleen! And the romancer's tale becomes the reader's To thee we owe full many a rare device;
dream. Thine is the sheaf of painted cards, 1 ween, 'Tis thus my malady I well may bear,
The rolling billiard ball, the rattling dice, | Albeit outstretched, like pope's own Paridel, The turning lathe fur framing gimcrack nice Upon the rack of a too-easy chair;
The amateur's blotched pallet thou may'st claim, And find, to cheat the time, a powerful spell
In old romants of errantry that tell.
That which moulders hemp and steel, Or later legends of the fairy-folk,
Mortal arm and nerve must feel. Or oriental tale of Afrite fell,
| Of the Danish band, whom count Witikind led, Of genii, talisman, and broad-wing'd roc, Many wax'd aged, and many were dead; Tho'taste may blush and frown, and sober reason Himself found his armour full weighty to bear, mock.
Wrinkled his brows grew, and hoary his hair;
He lean'd on a staff, when his step went abroad, Oft at such season, too, will rhymes unsought,
And patient his palfrey, when steed he bestrode; Arrange themselves in some romantic lay;
As he grew feebler his wildness ceased, The which, as things unfilting graver thought, He made himself peace with prelate and priest, Are burnt or blotted on some wiser day ;
Made his peace, and, stooping his head,
Patiently listell the counsel they said:
Wise and good was the counsel he gave.
V. T'han Ennui's yawning smile, what time she drops « Thou hast murder'd, robb’d, and spoil'd, it down.
Time it is thy poor soul were assoil'd;
Priest did'st thou slay, and churches burn, HAROLD THE DAUNTLESS.
| Time it is now to repentance to turn; CANTO 1.
Fiends hast thou worshipp'd, with fiendish rite, 1.
Leave now the darkness, and wend into light: List to the valorous deeds that were done
O! while life and space are given, By Harold the Dauntless, count Witikind's son!
Turn thee yet, and think of heaven!”
That stern old heathen bis head he raised, Count Witikind came of a regal strain,
And on the good prelate he steadfastly gazed: And roved with his Norsemen the land and the “Give me broad lands on the Wear and the Tyne, maio.
My faith I will leave, and I'll cleave unto thine.” Wo to the realms which he coasted! for there
VI. Was shedding of blood, and rending of hair,
Broad lands he gave him on Tyne and on Wear, . Rape of maiden, and slaughter of priest,
To be held of the church by bridle and spear; Gathering of ravens and wolves to the feast:
Part of Monk wearmouth, of Tynedale part, When be hoisted his standard black,
To better his will, and to soften his heart: Before him was battle, behind him wrack,
Count Witikind was a joyful man, And he burned the churches, that heathen Dane,
Less for the faith than the lands that he wan. To light his band to their barks again.
The high church of Durham is dress'd for the day. 11.
The clergy are rank'd in their solemn array; On Erio's shores was lois outrage known,
There came the count, in a bear-skin warm, The winds of France had his banners blown;
Leaning on Hilda, his concubine's arm; Little was there to plunder, yet still
He kneel'd before saint Cuthbert's shrine, His pirates had foray'd on Scottish hill:
With patience unwonted at rites divine: But upon merry England's coast
He abjured the gods of heathen race, More frequent he sail'd, for he won the most.
And he bent his head at the font of grace; So wide and so far his ravage they knew,
But such was the griesly old proselyte's look, If a sail but gleam'd white 'gainst the welkin blue, That the priest who baptized him grew pale and
shook: Trumpet and bugle to arms did call, Burghers hasten'd to man the wall,
And the old monks mutter'd beneath their hood, Peasants fled inward his fury to 'scape,
“ Of a stem so stubborn can never spring good!” Beacons were lighted on headland and cape,
Banners and banderols danced in the wind,
Monks rode before them, and spearmen behind, He liked the wealth of fair England so well,
Onward they pass'd, till fairly did shine That he sought in her bosom as native to dwell.
| Pennon and cross on the bosom of Type: He enter'd the Humber in fearful hour,
And full in front did that fortress lower, And disembark'd with his Danish power.
In darksome strength with its buttress and tower. Three earls came against him with all their train, At the castle-gate was young Harold there, Two hath he taken, and one hath he slaio:
Count Witikind's only offspring and heir.
Young Harold was fear'd for his hardihood,
His strength of frame, and his fury of muod; Peace of that heathen leader he sought,
Rude he was, and wild to behold, Gifts he gave, and quiet he bought:
Wore neither collar nor bracelet of gold, And the count took upon him the peaceable style,
Cap of vair, por rich array, Of a vassal and liegeman of Britain's broad isle.
Such as should grace that festal day:
His doublet of bull's hide was all unbraced,
Uncovered his head, and his sandal unlaced;
His shaggy black locks on his brow hung lov, Timo will consume the strongest cord;
And his eyes glanced thro' them a swarthy glow;