Lamkin

No: 93; variant: 93E

  1. LAMBKIN was as good a mason as ever laid stone; He builded Lord Montgomery’s castle, but payment got none.
  2. He builded the castle without and within; But he left an open wake for himself to get in.
  3. Lord Montgomery said to his lady, when he went abroad, Take care of Bold Lambkin, for he is in the wood.
  4. ‘Gar bolt the gate, nourice, without and within, Leave not the wake open, to let Bold Lambkin in.’
  5. She bolted the gates, without and within, But she left the wake open, to let Bold Lambkin in.
  6. ‘Gude morrow, gude morrow,’ says Bold Lambkin then; ‘Gude morrow, gude morrow,’ says the false nurse to him.
  7. ‘Where is Lord Montgomery? or where is he gone?’ ‘He is gone up to England, to wait on the king!
  8. ‘Where are the servants? and where are they gone?’ ‘They are all up to England, to wait upon him.’
  9. ‘Where is your lady? or where is she gone?’ ‘She is in her bower sitting, and sewing her seam.’
  10. ‘O what shall we do for to make her come down?’ ‘We’ll kill the pretty baby, that’s sleeping so sound.’
  11. Lambkin he rocked, and the false nurse she sung, And she stabbed the babe to the heart with a silver bodkin.
  12. ‘O still my babe, nourice, O still him with the pap:’ ‘He’ll no be stilled, madam, for this nor for that.’
  13. ‘O still my babe, nourice, go still him with the keys:’ ‘He’ll no be stilled, madam, let me do what I please.’
  14. ‘O still my babe, nourice, go still him with the bell:’ ‘He’ll no be stilled, madam, till you come down yoursel.’
  15. ‘How can I come down, this cold winter night, When there’s neither coal burning, nor yet candle-light?’
  16. ‘The sark on your back is whiter than the swan; Come down the stair, lady, by the light of your hand.’
  17. The lady she cam down the stair trip for trap; Who so ready as Bold Lambkin to meet her in the dark?
  18. ‘Gude morrow, gude morrow,’ said Bold Lambkin then; ‘Gude morrow, gude morrow,’ said the lady to him.
  19. ‘O where is Lord Montgomery? or where is he gone?’ ‘O he is up to England, to wait on the king.’
  20. ‘O where are your servants? or where are they gone?’ ‘They are all up to England, to wait upon him.
  21. ‘I’ll give you as much gold, Lambkin, as you’ll put in a peck, If you’ll spare my life till my lord comes back.’
  22. ‘Tho you would [give] me as much as I could put in a sack, I would not spare thy life till thy lord comes back.’
  23. Lord Montgomery sate in England, drinking with the king; The buttons flew off his coat, all in a ring.
  24. ‘God prosper, God prosper my lady and son! For before I get home they will all be undone.’