Fair Annie

No: 62; variant: 62J

Source: Buchan's MSS, I, 66.

  1. ‘Learn, O learn, Fair Annie,’ he said, ‘O learn to lie your lane; For I am going ower the sea, To woo and to bring hame
  2. ‘A brighter and a fairer dame Than ever ye hae been; For I am going ower the sea, To chuse and bring her hame.’
  3. ‘What aileth thee, my ain gude lord, What aileth thee at me? For seven braw sons hae I born Unto your fair bodie.
  4. ‘The eldest o your sons, my lord, Is heir o a’ your land; The second o your braw young sons He rises at your right hand.
  5. ‘The third o your braw young sons He serves you when you dine; The fourth o your braw sons, my lord, He bring to you the wine.
  6. ‘The fifth o your braw young sons Right well can use the pen; The sixth o your braw young sons, He’s travelling but and ben.
  7. ‘The seventh o your braw young sons, He lies on my breast-bane, The fairest flower amo them a’, That lay my sides between.’
  8. ‘But I am going ower the sea, To woo and to bring hame A lady wi some gowd and gear; Wi you I never got nane.’
  9. ‘Ye staw me awa in twall years auld, Ye sought nae gowd wi me; Ye put me to the schools o Ayr For fully years three.
  10. ‘But wha’ll be cook in your kitchen, And butler in your ha? And wha will govern your merry young men, When ye are far awa?’
  11. ‘O ye’ll be cook in my kitchen, And butler in my ha, And ye’ll wait on my merry young men, And serve them ane and a’.’
  12. ‘But wha will bake your bridal bread, And wha will brew your ale? And wha will welcome that lady That ye bring ower the dale.
  13. ‘O ye will bake my bridal bread, And ye will brew my ale, And ye will welcome that lady That I bring ower the dale.
  14. ‘Ye’ll bake bread, and ye’ll brew ale, For three score knights and ten; That day month I gang awa, The same day I’ll come again.’
  15. ‘O I will bake your bridal bread, And I will brew your ale; But oh, to welcome another woman My heart will nae be hale.’
  16. ‘Ye will put roses in your hair, And ribbons in your sheen, And ye will look fair maiden like, Though maiden ye be nane.’
  17. ‘O I’ll put roses in my hair, And ribbons in my sheen, And may be look as maiden-like As the bride ye bring hame.’
  18. Two of his sons he sent before, And two rade by his side, And three he left at hame wi her, She was the brightest bride.
  19. As she was gazing her around, To view the rural plain, And there she saw the bridal folk, Merrily coming hame.
  20. ‘Come here, come here, my boys a’, Ye see not what I see; For here I see your fair father, And a step-mother to thee.
  21. ‘O shall I call him honey, Sandy, Husband, or my gude lord? Or shall I call him my gude master, Let well or woe betide?’
  22. ‘Ye winna call him honey, mother, For angering o the bride; But ye’ll call him your gude master, Let well or woe betide.’
  23. She buskd her bonny boys in black, Herself in simple green, A kaim o gowd upon her hair, As maiden she had been.
  24. She’s taen the white bread in her lap, The wine glass in her hand, And she’s gane out upo the green, To welcome the bride hame.
  25. She woudna ca him her ain gude lord, For angering o the bride: ‘Ye’re welcome hame, my gude master, Your lands lie braid and wide.’
  26. ‘O fair mat fa you, Fair Annie, Sae well’s ye’ve welcomd me; Ye might hae welcomd my new bride; Some gift to you she’ll gie.’
  27. ‘Ye’re welcome hame, ye new-come bride, To your ha’s and your bowers; Ye’re welcome hame, my lady gay, Ye’re whiter that the flowers.’
  28. ‘O wha is this,’ the bride did say, ‘Sae well that welcomes me? If I’m lang lady o this place Some gift to her I’ll gie.
  29. ‘She’s likest to my dear sister That eer my eyes did see; A landit lord staw her awa, An ill death mat he die’
  30. ‘I hae a brother here this day, Fairer ye neer did see; And I woud think nae ill a match Unto this fair ladie.’
  31. ‘Ye’ll wed your brother on a stock, Sae do ye on a stane; I’ll wed me to the kingdom of heaven, For I’ll neer wed a man.’
  32. She servd the footmen o the beer, The nobles o the wine; But nane did cross her pale, pale lips, For changing o her min.
  33. When she came in unto the room She leuch amo them a’, But when she turnd her back about She loot the saut tears fa.
  34. She hanged up a silken cloath Upon a siller pin; It was to dry her twa blue eyes, As she went out and in.
  35. Her heart wi sorrow sair was filld, Her breast wi milk ran out; She aft went ot a quiet chamber, And let her young son suck.
  36. ‘There is a woman in this house This day has served me; But I’ll rise up, let her sit down, She’s ate, that I may see.
  37. ‘O wha is this,’ the bride coud say, ‘That serves this day sae well? And what means a’ this bonny boys, That follow at her heel?’
  38. ‘This is my sister, Fair Annie, That serves this day sae well, And these are a’ her bauld brothers, That follow at her heel.’
  39. Then out it speaks the new-come bride, Was full o jealousie: ‘I fear there’s something new, my lord, Ye mean to hide frae me.
  40. ‘But if she be your light leman Has me sair beguild, She shall gae out at my window, And range the woods sae wild.’
  41. When day was dane, and night drew on, And a’ man bound for bed, The bridegroom and the new-come bride In ae chamber were laid.
  42. The lady being left alone, Nursing her fair young son, She has taen up her gude lord’s harp, She harped and she sung.
  43. ‘Seven braw sons hae I born To the lord o this place; I wish they were seven hares To run the castle race, And I mysel a gude greyhound, To gie them a’ a chace.’
  44. ‘Lie near, lie near, my ain gude lord, Lie near and speak wi me; There is a woman in the house, She will be wild ere day.’
  45. ‘Lie still, lie still, my new-come bride, Lie still and take your rest; The pale’s out o my wine-puncheon, And lang it winna rest.’
  46. She held the harp still in her hand, To harp them baith asleep, And aye she harped and she sang, And saut tears she did weep.
  47. ‘Seven braw sons hae I born To the gude lord o this ha; I wish that they were seven brown rats, To climb the castle wa, And I mysel a gude grey cat, To take them ane and a’.’
  48. ‘Lie near, lie near, my ain gude lord, Lie near and speak wi me; There is a woman in this house, She will be wild ere day.’
  49. ‘Lie yond, lie yond, my new-come bride, My sheets are wonderous cauld; I woudna hear my love’s lament For your gowd ten thousand fauld.’
  50. ‘O wae be to you, ye fause lord, Some ill death mat ye die’ For that’s the voice o my sister Ann, Was stown frae yont the sea.’
  51. ‘Fair mat fa ye, ye buirdly bride, A gude death mat ye die’ For that’s the voice o your sister Ann, Was stown frae yont the sea; I came seeking Annie’s tocher, I was not seeking thee.’
  52. ‘Seven gude ships I hae brought here, In seven I’se gae hame; And a’ the gowd that I brought here, It’s a’ gang back again.’
  53. ‘Seven ships they brought you here, But ye’ll gang hame in ane; Ye’ll leave the rest to tocher Ann, For wi her I got nane.’
  54. ‘Seven ships they brought me here, But I’ll gang hame in ane; I’ll get my sister’s eldest son To hae me maiden hame.
  55. ‘My father wants not gowd nor gear, He will get me a man; And happy, happy will he be To hear o his daughter Ann.
  56. ‘I hae my sheen upon my feet, My gloves upon my hand, And ye’ll come to your bed, Annie, For I’ve dane you nae wrang.’