Saturday, January 4, 2014

January 2014 Folk Song

The January 2014 Folk Song selection, by Ambleside Online, is Battle of Otterburn. The first video below shows, in print, the history of the Battle of Otterburn, while simultaneously having the song play in the background. I can't process both simultaneously, so I recommend playing the video once with sound off, reading the words to your students, and then play with the sound on, or play the second video selection below the second time. I realy like the accent of the singer on the first video though, although I'm not clear on the meaning of all the words yet. I'll work on that...

It fell about the Lammas time,
When muir-men win their hay,
The doughty Douglas bound him ride,
Tae England tae catch a prey,
He’s ta’en the Gordons and the Graemes,
And the Lindsays light and gai,
But the Jardines wad not wi’ him ride,
And they rue it tae this day.

And he has burnt the dales of Tyne,
And part o’ Banbrough shire,
The Otter dale he’s burnt it hale,
And set it a’ on fire,
And he raed up tae Newcastle,
And rode it roond aboot,
Saying, “whar’s the laird o’ this castle,
And whar’s the lady o’t?”
And up spake braw Lord Percy then,
And O but he spak hie,
“I am the lord o’ this castle,
My wife’s the lady gaye.
If thou’rt the lord o’ this castle,
Sae weel it pleases me,
For ere I cross the Border fells,
The tane o’ us shall die.”
They lichted high on Otterburn,
Upon the bank sae bruin,
They lichted high on Otterburn,
And threw their broadswords doon,
But up there spoke a bonnie boy,
Before the break o’ dawn,
Saying, “Wake ye now my good lord sir,
Lord Percy’s near at hand”.
When Percy wi’ the Douglas met,
I wat he was fu’ fain,
They swak’d swords and sair they swat,
And blood ran doon between,
But Percy wi’ his guid braid sword,
That could sae sharply wound,
Has wounded Douglas on the brow,
Till he fell tae the ground.
 Then he call'd on his little foot-page,
And said, "Run speedilie,
And fetch my ain dear sister's son,
Sir Hugh Montgomery."

"My nephew good," the Douglas said,
"What recks the death of ane!
Last night I dreamed a dreary dream,
And I ken the day's thy ain."

"My wound is deep; I fain would sleep;
Take thou the vanguard of the three,
And hide me by the braken-bush,
That grows on yonder lilye lee."

"O bury me by the braken-bush,
Beneath the blooming brier;
Let never a living mortal ken
That ere a kindly Scot lies here."
He lifted up that noble lord,
Wi the saut tear in his ee;
He hid him in the braken-bush,
That his merrie men might not see.

The moon was clear, the day drew near,
The spears in flinders flew,
But mony a gallant Englishman
Ere day the Scotsmen slew.

The Gordons good, in English blood
They steepd their hose and shoon;
The Lindsays flew like fire about,
Till all the fray was done.

The Percy and Montgomery met,
That either of other were fain ;
They swapped* swords, and they twa swat,
And aye the blood ran down between.

"Now yield thee, yield thee, Percy," he said,
"Or else I vow I'll lay thee low!"
"To whom must I yield," quoth Earl Percy,
"Now that I see it must be so?"

"Thou shalt not yield to lord nor loun,"
Nor shalt thou yield to me;
But yield to the braken-bush,
That grows upon yon lilye lee. "
"I will not yield to a braken-bush,
Nor yet will I yield to a brier;
But I would yield to Earl Douglas,
Or Sir Hugh Montgomery, if he were here."

As soon as he knew it was Montgomery,
He struck his sword's point in the gronde;
The Montgomery was a courteous knight,
And quickly took him by the honde.

This deed was done at the Otterbourne,
About the breaking of the day;
Earl Douglas was buried at the braken-bush,
And the Percy led captive away.

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