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The Bonny Earl of Murray


There is an historical reference in this Ballad, which is a lament for king James VI of Scotland. James Stewart, the Earl of Moray had been implicated with the Earl of Boswell in an attack on Holyrood House in Edinburgh. In 1592, the Earl of Huntly and his cohorts killed the Earl of Moray at Donibristle in Fife.

Ye Highlands, and ye Lawlands,
Oh where have you been?
They have slain the Earl of Murray,
And they layd him on the green.

'Now wae be to thee,Huntly!
And wherefore did you sae?
I bade you bring him wi you,
But forbade you him to slay.'

He was a braw gallant,
And he rid at the ring;
And the bonny Earl of Murray,
Oh he might have been a king!

He was a braw gallant,
And he playd at the ba;
And the bonny Earl of Murray
Was the flower amang them a'.

He was a braw gallant,
And he playd at the glove;
And the bonny Earl of Murray,
Oh he was the Queen's love!

Oh lang will his lady
Look oer the castle Down,
Eer she see the earl of Murray
Come sounding thro the town!


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