Birth of Robin Hood

from by Patrick Rose

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about

For those who aren't aware, Francis Child spent a lot of time collecting ballads from England and Scotland and wrote them out. There are about 300 of these, each with at least three versions. This is based on Child Ballad #102, also known as Willie and Earl Richard's Daughter with music by Jon Boden.

lyrics

Oh Willie’s tall, and Willie’s strong
And he is born of high degree
And he has gone to Earl Richard
To serve obediently
 
Earl Richard had one daughter dear
The finest to be seen
And Willie fell in love with her
All in the garden green

The summer’s night was warm and still
And brightly shone the moon
And Willie’s met his sweetheart
In the garden, all alone

“Oh narrow is my gown, Willie,
That wont be so wide
And gold is all my fair colour
That wont to be my pride”

“But if my father should find out
What’s passed between us two
Before that he would eat or drink
He would hang you o’er that wall”

“But come up to my bower, Willie
Just as the sun goes down
And catch me in your two strong arms
And let me not fall down”

So when the sun has set in low
He has gone up to her bower
And by the pale light of the moon
Her window she looks o’er

All in that robe of red scarlet
She jumps, and fills the sky
And Willie was tall and Willie was strong
And he caught her in his arms

When night was done, and day was come
And the light began to creep
Well up then rose the Earl Richard
From out of his drowsy sleep

“Well I dreamed a dreadful dream last night
God grant it come to good
I dreamed I saw my daughter dear
Drowning in the flood”
 
So he’s called to him his servant men
By one, by two, by three
“Oh what’s become of my daughter dear
That she’ll not come to me?”

“If that she’s been stolen away
Or taken from this hall
Well I’ll make a vow and I’ll keep it true
I’ll hang you one and all”
 
So they searched east
And they searched west
And they searched up and down
They found her in the merry green wood
Nursing her bonny young son
Well he’s taken the baby all in his arms
And kissed him tenderly
Saying “Although I would your father hang
Yet your mother is dear to me”
 
He kissed him once, he kissed him twice
“My grandson I thee claim
And Robin Hood, in the merry green wood
That shall be your name”

There’s many that sing of green green grass
And sing of golden corn
And there’s many that sing of Robin Hood
Know not where he was born
It wasn’t in the lofty hall
Or in the dainty bower
But it was in the merry green wood
All among the lily flower

credits

from Himself, released November 8, 2011
Patrick Rose: Guitar/Voice

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Patrick Rose Sheffield, UK

Patrick Rose does folk style acoustic music in between learning about Computer Science and Maths, and occasionally running How To Play

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