Clerk Sanders

No: 69; variant: 69D

  1. ‘O I have seven bold brethren, And they are all valiant men, If they knew a man that would tread my bower His life should not go along wi him.’
  2. ‘Then take me up into your arms, And lay me low down on your bed, That ye may swear, and keep your oath clear, That your bower-room I did na tread.
  3. ‘Tie a handkerchief round your face, And you must tye it wondrous keen, That you may swear, and keep your oath clear, Ye saw na me since late yestreen.’
  4. But they were scarsley gone to bed, Nor scarse fa’n owre asleep, Till up and started her seven brethren, Just at Lord Saunder’s feet.
  5. Out bespoke the first brither, ‘Oh but love be wondrous keen!’ Out bespoke the second brither, ‘It’s ill done to kill a sleeping man.’
  6. Out bespoke the third brither, ‘We had better gae and let him be;’ Out bespoke the fourth brither, ‘He’ll no be killd this night for me:’
  7. Out bespoke the fifth brother, ‘This night Lord Saunders he shall die; Tho there were not a man in all Scotland, This night Lord Saunders he shall die.’
  8. He took out a rousty rapier, And he drew it three times thro the strae; Between Lord Saunders’ short rib and his side He gard the rusty rapier gae.
  9. ‘Awake, awake, Lord Saunders,’ she said, ‘Awake, awake, for sin and shame! For the day is light, and the sun shines bricht, ‘And I am afraid we will be taen.
  10. ‘Awake, awake, Lord Saunders,’ she said, ‘Awake, awake, for sin and shame! For the sheets they are asweat,’ she said, ‘And I am afraid we will be taen.
  11. ‘I dreamed a dreary dream last night, I wish it may be for our good, That I was cutting my yellow hair, And dipping it in the wells o blood.’
  12. Aye she waukened at this dead man, Aye she put on him to and fro; Oh aye she waukend at this dead man, But of his death she did not know.
  13. ‘It’s I will do for my love’s sake What many ladies would think lang; Seven years shall come and go Before a glove go on my hand.
  14. ‘And I will do for my love’s sake What many ladies would not do; Seven years shall come and go Before I wear stocking or shoe.
  15. ‘Ther’ll neer a shirt go on my back, There’ll neer a kame go in my hair, There’ll never coal nor candle-light Shine in my bower nae mair.’