The False Lady

In common with other American examples, this New England version of "Young Hunting" has lost its ending, in which the heroine is burned at the stake for her transgressions. Jealousy is often a good enough motive for murder, but death is still a rather high price to pay for a little white lie.

"Abide, abide, true love," she said,
"Beg and stay all night,
You shall have pleasure in my room
With a coal and a candle light, light,
     With a coal and a candle light."

"I won't abide, you false lady,
And beg and stay all night,
For I have a far better love to enjoy,
When I go home, than you."

As he stooped over saddle bow
To kiss her lips so sweet,
And with a penknife in her hand,
She wounded him full deep.

"Why woundest me, you false lady,
Why woundeet me so sore?
There's not a doctor in all Scotland
Can heal my mortal wound."

She awoke her maids in the morning,
Just at the break of day,
Saying, "There's a dead man in my bed-chamber,
I wish he was away."

Some took him by the lily-white hands,
And others by the feet,
They threw him into a very deep well,
Full fifty fathoms deep.

"Lie there, lie there, you false young man,
Lie there, lie there alone,
And let the one that you love best
Think you long a-coming home."

Oh, then up spoke a pretty little bird,
Sitting in a tree:
"An ill death may you die, lady,
For he had no love but thee."

© Golden Hind Music