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There Was A Battle In The North

 

Burns Original

Standard English Translation


1.
There was a battle in the north,
And nobles there were many,
And they hae kill'd Sir Charlie Hay,
And they laid the wyte on Geordie.
2.
O, he has written a lang letter -
He sent it to his lady: -
'Ye maun cum up to Enbrugh town
To see what words o' Geordie.'
3.
When first she look'd the letter on,
She was baith red and rosy;
But she had na read a word but twa,
Till she wallow't like a lily.
4.
'Gar get to me my gude grey steed,
My menzie a' gae wi' me,
For I shall neither eat or drink
Till Enbrugh town shall see me.'
5.
And she had mountit her gude grey steed,
Her menzie a' gaed wi' her;
And she did neither eat nor drink
Till Enbrugh town did see her.
6.
And first appear'd the fatal block,
And syne the aix to head him,
And Geordie cam down the stair
And bands o' airn upon him.
7.
But tho' he was chain'd in fetters strang,
O' airn and steel sae heavy,
There was na ane in a' the court
Sae bra' a man as Geordie.
8.
O, she's down on her bended knee,
I wat she's pale and weary;
'O pardon, pardon, noble king
And gie me back my Dearie!
9.
'I hae born seven sons to my Geodie dear
The seventh ne'er saw his daddie:
O, pardon, pardon, noble king,
Pity a waefu' lady!'
10.
'Gar bid the headin'-man mak haste!'
Our king reply'd fu' lordly:
'O noble king, tak a' that's mine
But gie me back my Geodie.'
11.
The Gordons cam and the Gordons ran
And they were stark and steady;
And ay the word amang them a',
Was, 'Gordons keep you ready.'
12.
An aged lord at the king's right hand
Says: 'Noble king, but hear me: -
Gar her tell down five thousand pound,
And gie her back her Dearie.'
13.
Some gae her marks, some gae her crowns,
Some gae her dollars many;
And she's tell'd down five thousand pound,
And she's gotten again her Dearie.
14.
She blinkit blythe in her Geordie's face,
Says: 'Dear I've bought thee, Geordie,
But there sud been bluidy bouks on the green
Or I had tint my laddie.'
15.
He claspit her by the middle sma',
And he kist her lips sae rosy,
'The fairest flower o' woman-kind
Is my sweet bonie Lady.'

 



There was a battle in the north,
And nobles there were many,
And they have killed Sir Charlie Hay,
And they laid the blame on Geordie.

O, he has written a long letter -
He sent it to his lady: -
You must come up to Edinburgh town
To see what words o' Geordie.'

When first she looked the letter on,
She was both red and rosy;
But she had not read a word but two,
Till she rolled like a lily.

'Go get to me my good grey steed,
My servants all go with me,
For I shall neither eat or drink
Till Edinburgh town shall see me.'

And she had mounted her good grey steed,
Her servants all went with her;
And she did neither eat nor drink
Till Edinburgh town did see her.

And first appeared the fatal block,
And then the axe to behead him,
And Geordie came down the stair
And bands of iron upon him.

But though he was chained in fetters strong,
O' iron and steel so heavy,
There was not one in all the court
So handsome a man as Geordie.

O, she is down on her bended knee,
I know she is pale and weary;
'O pardon, pardon, noble king
And give me back my Dear!

'I have born seven sons to my Geodie dear
The seventh never saw his daddy:
O, pardon, pardon, noble king,
Pity a woeful lady!'

Go bid the heading-man make haste!'
Our king replied full lordly:
'O noble king, take all that is mine
But give me back my Geodie.'

The Gordons cam and the Gordons ran
And they were strong and steady;
And always the word among them all,
Was, 'Gordons keep you ready.'

An aged lord at the king's right hand
Says: 'Noble king, but hear me: -
Go her tell down five thousand pound,
And give her back her Dear.'

Some gave her marks, some gave her crowns,
Some gave her dollars many;
And she has telled down five thousand pound,
And she has gotten again her Dear.

She smiled blythe in her Geordie's face,
Says: 'Dear I have bought you, Geordie,
But there should been bloody bodies on the green
Or I had lost my lad.'

He clasped her by the middle small,
And he kissed her lips so rosy,
'The fairest flower of woman-kind
Is my sweet lovely Lady.'

 

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