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GUEST,gutcher Border & Hero ballads, Child #171-188 (34) RE: Border & Hero ballads, Child #171-188 15 Jan 17


A ballad such as Edom o Gordon would certainly sow dissention among the nobles, the Gordons being of the Queens [Mary] party and the Forbes"s being for the King. One can only speculate, could this have been one of the ballads for which they were hangit soon after that dreadful event.

Another character of a slightly earlier period deserves mention. Airchie Armstrong, court fool to James 1V and James V, may have had a hand in the production of the songs attributed to James V. he certainly appears to have had poetic ability if the extempore advice he gave to the latter be considered:---

Sow not your seed in Sandilands
Nor spend your strength in Weir-----[war]
nor ride upon ye Oliphant
For the gauin o yer gear------------[losing of your money or goods]

Ex. The king, by the policy of his stepfather, the Earl of Angus,regent of the Kingdom had not slept by himself since the age of 10 his bed being provided each night with a nubile young lady this the Earl hoped would keep his mind of matters of state and allow the said Earl to continue governing the country.

As a mere bit cullen, around the age of 15, James V spent a good while in Lanark castle, pursuing his amours with 3 of his lemans who all lived on the opposite side of the river Clyde from Lanark, one of them being a daughter of Sandilands of that Ilk, the second was a daughter of Weir of Stanebyres and the third was a daughter of Oliphant of Cora Castle [this having been the home of the hero of the ballad Clydes Waters, he probably being an Oliphant] One evening taking at night of from the ladies with the wine flowing free the courtiers were rousin up the young king as a gey lad when Airchie spoke out--hearkin tae me Jamie lad an I"ll gie ye some guid advice yr"ll no get fae thae messans [lapdogs] and he gave it as in the above form.

In a footnote in one of his works Sir W. Scott mentions that he knew it but does not give it.


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