« AnteriorContinuar »
FORTUNATELY a glossary is appended to this curious ballad, or it would, otherwise, be difficult to com
prehend it. Mr. Motherwell, it's author, wrote it avowedly as an imitation of the "old style,” but we think he has overshot his mark, and in giving it too much quaintness, he has sacrificed the charming simplicity, which characterizes his original. We know not on what tradition his subject is founded.
ERL WILLIAN has muntit his gude grai| The ladie's handis were quhyte als milk, stede,
(Ringis my luve wore mair nor ane.) (Merrie lemis munelicht on the sea,) Her skin was safter nor the silk ; And graithit him in ane cumli weid.
(Lilly bricht schinis my luvis halse (Swa bonnilie blumis the hawthorn tree.) bane.)
Around hir slepis the quhyte muneschyne, Gang ye eist, or sare ye wast, (Meik is mayden undir kell,
(Ilka stern blinkis blythe for thee,) Her lips bin lyke the blude reid wyne; Or tak ye the road that ye like best,
(The rois of flowris hes sweitest smell.) (Al trew feeris ryde in cumpanie.)
It was al bricht quhare that ladie stude,
(Far my luve, fure ower the sea.) Bot dern is the lave of Elfinland wud, (The knicht pruvit false that ance
Erl William loutit doun full lowe;
(Luvis first seid bin curtesie.) And swung hir owir his saddil bow,
(Ryde quha listis, ye'll link with mee.)
Glossary.-Muntit, mounted. Gude, good. Lemis, geims, scintillates. Graithit, dressed. Dern, hidden, secret, dark. Swa, so. Quha, who. Quhyll, while. Grai goukis sang, song of the "cuckoo-grey." Ilk ane, eich, every one. Ilka has the same signification. Quhyt, white. Schoirt, lang, short, long. Braid aik tree, broad oak tree. Kythit, discovered. Quhilk, nocht, which, not. Kell, a
dress. The rois, the rose. Stude, stood. Fure, fared. Bot dern is the lave, but dark, or hidden, is the remainder, Als, as. Mair nor ane, more than one. Schinis, halse bane, shines, collar bone. Hert, schawis, heart, shows. Standand alane, standing alone. Till, to. Burdalane, a term used to denote one who is the only child left in a family; bird alone, or solitary, Layed, "lay,” means basis, or foundation , and the signification of "layed,” here, is fixed, I think, or set. Fere, a companion. Schortest rede hes least to mend, shortest counsel has last to expiate. Nocht, not. Gang, eist, wast, go, east, west. Stern, star. Loutit, stooped. Seid, bin, offspring, is. Scho, she. Its leeful lane, by itself alone. Furth by firth, forth, abroad by frith. Blyth be hertes quhilkis luve ilk uthur, blithe be hearts which love each other.. Flaucht, gust, and also flake. Bairnis, mither, children, mother. Mim, affectedly modest or coy, prim. Nicher, neigh. Quhan thai lyke, when they choose. Bauld, sheuch, bold, a jurrow or ditch. Syke, a rill, or rivulet, usuall; dry in summer. Hairt, heart. Ald, pairt, old, part. Nae lett, no obstruction, r.o hinderance. Nocht woman is scho that laikis ane tung, she who lacks a tongue, is not a woman. Sangis, songs. Haif, have. Qnhan dawis the day, when breaks the day. Braid mune, broad moon. Lift, the fir. mament. Glentin, glancing, gleaming. Brennand, burning. Fra ane peelit skull, from a peeled skull. Ugsomlyk, very loathsome, disgusting. Rawis, rous, Boysteous, boisterous, blustering, Donkir, damper , danker. Maun fa', must fall. The merlis sang, the blackbird's song, Flude, flood. Mudy, moody Blude, blood. A seamless shrowd weird schaipis for me! a seamless shroud fate, or destiny, prepares for
To rede aright my spell, to explain aright my tale, Eerilie, awfully, drearily. Sal, shall, Quhil. fleand Hevin and raikand Hell, while avoiding Heaven and ranging He!l. Ghaist, ghost. Luvand, loving: affectionale.
This curious fragment is taken from the “ Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border.” Another ballad, almost
it's counterpart, and entitled “ The Three Ravens," was published by Ritson in his "Ancient Songs." The latter, however has a more pleasant moral than that conveyed in our version, inasmuch as “the hawk, the hound, and the lady fair,” are therein pourtrayed guarding instead of deserting the body of the slain knight.