Mudcat Café message #2930099 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #4640   Message #2930099
Posted By: Jim Dixon
17-Jun-10 - 05:23 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Montrose (Steeleye Span)
Subject: Lyr Add: MONTROSE'S ADDRESS TO HIS MISTRESS
Just for comparison, and historical interest:

From Old Ballads: Historical and Narrative, Volume 4 by Thomas Evans, revised by R. H. Evans (London: R. H. Evans, 1810), page 361:


THE MARQUIS OF MONTROSE'S ADDRESS TO HIS MISTRESS.

[James Graham, Marquis of Montrose, was born in 1612, and executed by order of the Republican Government, for treason against the state, in 1650. Clarendon says he well deserved to have his memory preserved and celebrated amongst the most illustrious persons of the age in which he lived. The following poem is taken from Watson's scarce collection of Scotch Poems, part 3, 1711.—ed.]

My dear, and only love, I pray
This noble world of thee,
Be governed by no other sway,
But purest monarchy.
For if confusion have a part,
Which virtuous souls abhor,
And hold a synod in thy heart,
I'll never love thee more.

Like Alexander I will reign,
And I will reign alone,
My thoughts shall evermore disdain
A rival on my throne.
He either fears his fate too much,
Or his deserts are small,
That puts it not unto the touch,
To win or lose it all.

But I must rule and govern still,
And always give the law;
And have each subject at my will,
And all to stand in awe.
But 'gainst my battery if I find
Thou shun'st the prize so sore,
As that thou set'st me up a blind,
I'll never love thee more.

Or in the empire of thy heart,
Where I should solely be,
Another do pretend a part,
And dares to vie with me,
Or if committees thou erect
And goes on such a score,
I'll sing and laugh at thy neglect,
And never love thee more.

But if thou wilt be constant then,
And faithful of my word,
I'll make thee glorious by my pen,
And famous by my sword.
I'll serve thee in such noble ways
Was never heard before:
I'll crown and deck thee all with bays,
And love thee evermore.

SECOND PART.

My dear and only Love, take heed
Lest thou thyself expose,
And let all longing lovers feed
Upon such looks as those.
A marble wall then build about,
Beset without a door,
But if thou let thy heart fly out,
I'll never love thee more.

Let not their oaths, like vollies shot,
Make any breach at all;
Nor smoothness of their language plot
Which way to scale the wall;
Nor balls of wild fire, Love, consume
The shrine which I adore:
For if such smoke about thee fume,
I'll never love thee more.

I think thy virtues be too strong
To suffer by surprise:
Which victuall'd by my love so long,
The siege at length must rise,
And leave thee ruled in that health,
And state thou was before,
But if thou turn a common-wealth,
I'll never love thee more.

But if by fraud, or by consent,
Thy heart to ruin come,
I'll sound no trumpet as I wont,
Nor march by tuck of drum;
But hold my arms like ensigns, up,
Thy falshood to deplore,
And bitterly will sigh and weep,
And never love thee more.

I'll do with thee as Nero did,
When Rome was set on fire,
Not only all relief forbid,
But to a hill retire;
And scorn to shed a tear to see
Thy spirit grown so poor,
But smiling sing until I die,
I'll never love thee more.

Yet for the Love I bare thee once.
Lest that thy name should die,
A monument of marble stone,
The truth shall testify;
That every pilgrim passing by,
May pity and deplore
My case, and read the reason why
I can love thee no more.

The golden laws of love shall be
Upon this pillar hung,
A simple heart, a single eye,
A true and constant tongue,
Let no man for more love pretend
Than he has hearts in store:
True love begun shall never end,
Love one and love no more.

Then shall thy heart be set by mine,
But in far different case:
For mine was true, so was not thine,
But look'd like Janus' face.
For as the waves with every wind,
So sails thou every shore,
And leaves my constant heart behind
How can I love thee more!

My heart shall with the sun be fix'd,
For constancy most strange,
And thine shall with the moon be mix'd,
Delighting age in change.
Thy beauty shin'd at first most bright,
And woe is me therefore,
That ever I found thy love so light,
I could love thee no more.

The misty mountains, smoky lakes,
The rocks resounding echo,
The whistling wind that murmurs makes,
Shall with me sing hey ho.
The tossing seas, the tumbling boats,
Tears dropping from each shore,
Shall tune with me their turtle notes,
I'll never love thee more.

As doth the turtle chaste and true
Her fellow's death regret,
And daily mourns for his adieu,
And ne'er renews her mate;
So though thy faith was never fast,
Which grieves me wondrous sore,
Yet I shall live in love so chaste,
That I shall love no more.

And when all gallants ride about,
These monuments to view,
Whereon is written in and out,
Thou traitorous and untrue.
Then in a passion they shall pause,
And thus say, sighing sore,
Alas! he had too just a cause,
Never to love thee more.

And when that tracing goddess fame.
From east to west shall flee,
She shall record it to thy shame,
How thou hast loved me:
And how in odds our love was such,
As few has been before,
Thou loved too many and I too much,
That I can love no more.


London: Printed by W. Bulmer and Co.
Cleveland Row, St. James's.