The Knight and the Shepherd’s Daughter

No: 110; variant: 110K

  1. THERE was a shepherd’s daughter, Kept sheep on yonder hill; O by comes a courtier, And fain wud hae his will. We’ll go no more a roving,A roving in the night, We’ll go no more a roving, Let the moon shine neer so bright. O we’ll go [no] more a roving.
  2. He took her by the middle so small, And by the grass-green sleeve; He bended her body unto the ground, And of her parents he askd no leave.
  3. ‘Now since you’ve got your will o me, And brought my fair bodie to shame, All the request I ask of you is, Pray tell me what’s your name.’
  4. ‘O some do call me Jack,’ he says, ‘And some do call me John, But when I am in the king’s court, My name is Sweet William.’
  5. She took her petticoats by the band, Her mantle oer her arm, And she’s awa to the king’s court, As fast as she could run.
  6. When she came to the king’s court, She tinkled at the ring; Who was so ready as the king himsel To let this fair maid in!
  7. And when she came before the king, She kneeled low by his knee; ‘What’s this? what’s this, fair maid,’ he says, ‘What’s this you ask of me?’
  8. . . . . . . . . . . ‘There is a knight into your court This day has robbed me.’
  9. ‘If he robbed you of your gold,’ he said, ‘It’s hanged he must be; If he’s robbed you of your maidenhead, His body I grant to thee.’
  10. ‘He’s not robbed me of my gold,’ she said, ‘Nor of my white money, But he’s robbed me of my maidenhead, The flower of my bodie.’
  11. He’s called down his merry men all, By one, by two, by three; John used to be the foremost man, But the hindmost man was he.
  12. He took a long purse of gold And wrapped it in a glove: ‘Here’s to thee, my dearest dear, Go seek some other love.’
  13. ‘I’ll have none of your gold,’ she says, ‘Nor any of your white money, But I’ll just have your own bodie The king has granted to me.’
  14. ‘I wish I was drinking the well-water When I drank of the ale, Before a shepherd’s daughter Would tell me such a tale.’
  15. He got her on a milk-white steed, Himself upon a grey, Then on a day . . . This couple rode away.
  16. It’s when they were coming by the nettle-bush, She said, So well may you grow! For many a day my mammy and me Hae pickled at your pow.
  17. When they cam by the mill-door, she said, So well may you clatter! For many a day my mammy and me Pickled at your happer.
  18. When they came to the king’s court, They reckoned up their kin; She was a king’s one dochter, And he but a blacksmith’s son.