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Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. (1863–1944).  The Oxford Book of Ballads.  1910.
 
155. Lord Lovel
 
 
I

LORD LOVEL he stood at his castle-gate,
  Combing his milk-white steed,
When up came Lady Nancy Belle,
  To wish her lover good speed.
 
II

‘Where are you going, Lord Lovel?’ she said,
        5
  ‘Oh where are you going?’ said she.
‘I’m going, my Lady Nancy Belle,
  Strange countries for to see.’
 
III

‘When will you be back, Lord Lovel?’ she said,
  ‘Oh when will you come back?’ said she.        10
‘In a year, or two, or three at the most,
  I’ll return to my fair Nancy.’
 
IV

But he had not been gone a year and a day,
  Strange countries for to see,
When languishing thoughts came into his head,        15
  Lady Nancy Belle he would go see.
 
V

So he rode, and he rode, on his milk-white steed,
  Till he came to London town,
And there he heard St. Pancras’ bells,
  And the people all mourning round.        20
 
VI

‘Oh what is the matter?’ Lord Lovel he said,
  ‘Oh what is the matter?’ said he;
‘A lord’s lady is dead,’ a woman replied,
  ‘And some call her Lady Nancy.’
 
VII

So he order’d the grave to be open’d wide,
        25
  And the shroud he turnèd down,
And there he kiss’d her clay-cold lips,
  Till the tears came trickling down.
 
VIII

Lady Nancy she died, as it might be, today,
  Lord Lovel he died as tomorrow;        30
Lady Nancy she died out of pure, pure grief,
  Lord Lovel he died out of sorrow.
 
IX

Lady Nancy was laid in St. Pancras’ Church,
  Lord Lovel was laid in the choir;
And out of her bosom there grew a red rose,        35
  And out of her lover’s a briar.
 
X

They grew, and they grew, to the church-steeple top,
  And then they could grow no higher;
So there they entwined in a true-lovers’ knot,
  For all lovers true to admire.        40
 

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