Verse > Anthologies > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Ballads
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CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. (1863–1944).  The Oxford Book of Ballads.  1910.
 
82. Young Waters
 
 
I

ABOUT Yule, when the wind blew cule,
  And the round tables began,
O there is come to our King’s court
  Mony a well-favor’d man.
 
II

The Queen luikt owre the castle-wa’
        5
  Beheld baith dale and down,
And there she saw Young Waters
  Come riding to the town.
 
III

His footmen they did rin before,
  His horsemen rade behind;        10
Ane mantel of the burning gowd
  Did keip him frae the wind.
 
IV

Gowden-graith’d his horse before,
  And siller-shod behind;
The horse Young Waters rade upon        15
  Was fleeter than the wind.
 
V

Out then spak’ a wylie lord,
  Unto the Queen said he:
‘O tell me wha ’s the fairest face
  Rides in the company?’—        20
 
VI

‘I’ve sene lord, and I’ve sene laird,
  And knights of high degree,
Bot a fairer face than Young Waters’
  Mine eyne did never see.’
 
VII

Out then spake the jealous King,
        25
  And an angry man was he:
‘O if he had bin twice as fair,
  You micht have excepted me.
 
VIII

You’re neither laird nor lord,’ she says,
  ‘But the King that wears the crown;        30
There is not a knight in fair Scotland
  But to thee maun bow down.’
 
IX

For a’ that she cou’d do or say,
  Appeas’d he wad nae bee,
But for the words which she had said,        35
  Young Waters he maun dee.
 
X

They hae ta’en Young Waters,
  And put fetters to his feet;
They hae ta’en Young Waters, and
  Thrown him in dungeon deep.        40
 
XI

‘Aft have I ridden thro’ Stirling town,
  In the wind but and the weet;
But I neir rade thro’ Stirling town
  Wi’ fetters at my feet.
 
XII

‘Aft have I ridden thro’ Stirling town,
        45
  In the wind but and the rain;
But I neir rade thro’ Stirling town
  Neir to return again.’
 
XIII

They hae ta’en to the heiding-hill
  His young son in his craddle;        50
And they hae ta’en to the heiding-hill
  His horse but and his saddle.
 
XIV

They hae ta’en to the heiding-hill
  His lady fair to see;
And for the words the Queen had spoke        55
  Young Waters he did dee.
 
GLOSS:  graith’d] harnessed.
 

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