Mary Hamilton

No: 173; variant: 173[V]

  1. ‘My father was the Duke of York, My mother the gay ladie, An I myself a maiden bright, An the queen desired me.’
  2. But there word gane to the kitchen, There’s word gane to the ha, That Mary mild she gangs wi child To the uppermost stewart of a’.
  3. Than they sought but, and they sou[ght] ben, They sought aneath the bed, An there the fand the bonnie lad-bairn, Lyin lappin in his blood.
  4. ‘Gae buss ye, Marie Hamilton, Gae buss ye, buss ye bra, For ye maun away to Edin[brough] town, The queen’s birthday . . ‘.’
  5. She wadna put on her black, bla[ck] silk, Nor wad she put on the brown, But she pat on the glisterin stufs, To glister in Edinbrough town.
  6. An whan she cam to the water-gate Loud laughters gae she three, But whan she cam to the Netherbow Port The tear blinded Marie’s ee
  7. ‘Twas up than spak Queen Marie’s nurse, An a sorry woman was she: ‘Whae sae clever o fit and ready o wit Has telld sic news o thee!’
  8. ‘Oft have I Queen Marie’s head Oft have I caimd her hair, An a’ the thanks I’ve gotten for that Is the gallows to be my heir!
  9. ‘Oft have I dressd Queen Marie’s head, An laid her in her bed, An a’ the thanks I’ve gotten for that Is the green gallows-tree to tread!
  10. ‘O spare, O spare, O judge,’ she cried, ‘O spair a day for me!’ ‘There is nae law in our land, ladie, To let a murderer be.’
  11. ‘Yestreen the queen had four Maries, The night she’ll hae but three; There was Marie Seaton, and Ma[rie] Bea[ton], An Marie Carmichael, an me.
  12. ‘O if my father now but kend The death that I’m to die, O muckle, muckle wad be the red gowd That he wad gie for me.
  13. ‘An if my brothers kend the death That I am now to die, O muckle, muckle wad be the red blood That wad be shed for me.’