Robin Hood Newly Revived

Come listen awhile, you gentlemen all,
With a hey down, down, a down, down,
That are this bower within,
For a story of gallant bold Robin Hood,
I purpose now to begin.

What time of day? quod Robin Hood then.
Quoth Little John, 'Tis in the prime.
“Why then we will to the green wood gang,
For we have no vittles to dine.”

As Robin Hood walkt the forrest along,
It was in the mid of the day,
There he was met of a deft young man,
As ever walkt on the way.

His doublet was of silk ‘'tis’ said,
His stockings like scarlet shone;
And he walked on along the way,
To Robin Hood then unknown.

A herd of deer was in the bend,
All feeding before his face:
“Now the best of you ile have to my dinner,
And that in a little space.”

Now the stranger he made no mickle adoe,
But he bends and a right good bow,
And the best of all the herd he slew,
Forty good yards him froe.

Well shot, well shot, quod Robin Hood then,
That shot it was shot in time;
And if thou wilt accept of the place,
Thou shalt be a bold yeoman of mine.

Go play the chiven, the stranger said,
Make haste and quickly go,
Or with my fist, be sure of this,
Ile give thee buffets sto'.

Thou had'st not best buffet me, quod Robin Hood,
For though I seem forlorn,
Yet I have those will take my part,
If I but blow my horn.

Thou wast not best wind thy horn, the stranger said,
Beest thou never so much in haste,
For I can draw out a good broad sword,
And quickly cut the blast.

Then Robin Hood bent a very good bow,
To shoot, and that he would fain;
The stranger he bent a very good bow,
To shoot at bold Robin again.

Hold thy hand, hold thy hand, quod Robin Hood,
To shoot it would be in vain;
For if we should shoot the one at the other,
The one of us may be slain.

But let's take our swords and our broad bucklèrs,
And gang under yonder tree,
As I hope to be sav'd, the stranger he said,
One foot I will not flee.

Then Robin Hood lent the stranger a blow,
'Most scar'd him out of his wit:
Thou never felt blow, the stranger he said,
That shall be better quit.

The stranger he drew out a good broad sword,
And hit Robin on the crown,
That from every haire of bold Robins head
The blood ran trickling down.

God a mercy, good fellow! quod Robin Hood then,
And for this that thou hast done,
Tell me, good fellow, what thou art,
Tell me where thou doest won.

The stranger then answered bold Robin Hood,
Ile tell thee where I do dwell;
In Maxwell town I was bred and born,
My name is young Gamwell.

For killing of my own fathers stewàrd,
I am forc'd to this English wood,
And for to seek an uncle of mine,
Some call him Robin Hood.

“But 'art thou' cousin of Robin Hood then?
The sooner we should have done.”
As I hope to be sav'd, the stranger then said,
I am his own sisters son.

But, lord! what kissing and courting was there,
When these two cousins did greet!
And they went all that summers day,
And Little John did [not] meet.

But when they met with Little John,
He ‘unto them’ did say,
O master, pray where have you been,
You have tarried so long away?

I met with a stranger, quod Robin Hood,
Full sore he hath beaten me.
Then I'le have a bout with him, quod Little John,
And try if he can beat me.

Oh [no], oh no, quoth Robin Hood then,
Little John, it may [not] be so;
For he is my own dear sisters son,
And cousins I have no mo.

But he shall be a bold yeoman of mine,
My chief man next to thee;
And I Robin Hood, and thou Little John,
And ‘Scadlock’ he shall be.

And weel be three of the bravest outlàws
That live in the north country,
If ‘you will’ hear more of bold Robin Hood,
In ‘the’ second part it will be.
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