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A hundred more fed free in stall:

Such was the custom of Branksome-Hall.


Why do these steeds stand ready dight?
Why watch these warriors, arm'd, by night?
They watch to hear the bloodhound baying;
They watch, to hear the war-horn braying;
To see Saint George's red cross streaming;
To see the midnight beacon gleaming;
They watch against Southron force and guile,
Lest Scrope, or Howard, or Percy's powers,
Threaten Branksome's lordly towers,

From Warkworth, or Naworth, or merry Carlisle.'


Such is the custom of Branksome-Hall.-
Many a valiant knight is here;

But he, the chieftain of them all,
His sword bangs rusting on the wall,
Beside his broken spear.

Bards long shall tell,

How Lord Walter fell! 2

When startled burghers fled, afar,

The furies of the Border war;

When the streets of high Dunedin 3

Saw lances gleam, and falchions redden,

need, they give heavy strokes." The Jedwood-axe was a sort of partisan, used by horsemen, as appears from the arms of Jedburgh, which bear a cavalier mounted, and armed with this weapon. It is also called a Jedwood or Jeddart staff.

1See Appendix, Note C.

2 See Appendix, Note D.

* Edinburgh.

And heard the slogan's' deadly yell-
Then the Chief of Branksome fell.


Can piety the discord heal,

Or stanch the death-feud's enmity!
Can Christian lore, can patriot zeal,
Can love of blessed charity?
No! vainly to each holy shrine,

In mutual pilgrimage, they drew;
Implored, in vain, the grace divine

For chiefs, their own red falchions slew:
While Cessford owns the rule of Carr,
While Ettrick boasts the line of Scott,
The slaughter'd chiefs, the mortal jar,
The havoc of the feudal war,

Shall never, never be forgot!"

1 The war-cry or gathering word of a Border clan.

2 Among other expedients resorted to for stanching the feud betwixt the Scotts and the Kerrs, there was a bond executed in 1529, between the heads of each clan, binding themselves to perform reciprocally the four principal pilgrimages of Scotland, for the benefit of the souls of those of the opposite name who had fallen in the quarrel. This indenture is printed in the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, vol. i. But either it never took effect, or else the feud was renewed shortly afterwards.

Such pactions were not uncommon in feudal times; and, as might be expected, they were often, as in the present case, void of the effect desired. When Sir Walter Mauny, the renowned follower of Edward III., had taken the town of Ryol in Gascony, he remembered to have heard that his. father lay there buried, and offered a hundred crowns to any who could show him his grave. A very old man appeared before Sir Walter, and informed him of the manner of his father's death, and the place of his sepulture. It seems that the Lord of Mauny had, at a great


In sorrow o'er Lord Walter's bier
The warlike foresters had bent;
And many a flower, and many a tear,
Old Teviot's maids and matrons lent:
But o'er her warrior's bloody bier
The Ladye dropp'd nor flower nor tear!
Vengeance, deep brooding o'er the slain,
Had lock'd the source of softer woe;
And burning pride, and high disdain,
Forbade the rising tear to flow;
Until, amid his sorrowing clan,

Her son lisp'd from the nurse's knee—
"And if I live to be a man,

"My father's death revenged shall be !"-
Then fast the mother's tears did seek
To dew the infant's kindling cheek.


All loose her negligent attire,

All loose her golden hair,

tournament, unhorsed, and wounded to the death, a Gascon knight, of the house of Mirepoix, whose kinsman was Bishop of Cambray. For this deed he was held at feud by the relations of the knight, until he agreed to undertake a pilgrimage to the shrine of St. James of Compostella, for the benefit of the soul of the deceased. But as he returned through the town of Ryol, after accomplishment of his vow, he was beset and treacherously slain, by the kindred of the knight whom he had killed. Sir Walter, guided by the old man, visited the lowly tomb of his father; and, having read the inscription, which was in Latin, he caused the body to be raised, and transported to his native city of Valenciennes, where masses were, in the days of Froissart, duly said for the soul of the unfortunate pilgrim.-Chronycle of FROISSART, vol. i. p. 123.

Hung Margaret o'er her slaughter'd sire,

And wept in wild despair.

But not alone the bitter tear
Had filial grief supplied;

For hopeless love, and anxious fear,
Had lent their mingled tide:
Nor in her mother's alter'd eye
Dared she to look for sympathy.

Her lover, 'gainst her father's clan,
With Carr in arms had stood,'
When Mathouse-burn to Melrose ran,
All purple with their blood;

And well she knew, her mother dread,
Before Lord Cranstoun she should wed,"
Would see her on her dying bed.

'The family of Ker, Kerr, or Carr, was very powerful on the Border. Fynes Morrison remarks, in his Travels, that their influence extended from the village of Preston-Grange in Lothian, to the limits of England. Cessford Castle, the ancient baronia. residence of the family, is situated near the village of Morebattle, within two or three miles of the Cheviot Hills. It has been a place of great strength and consequence, but is now ruinous. Tradition affirms, that it was founded by Halbert, or Habby Kerr, a gigantic warrior, concerning whom many stories are current in Roxburghshire. The Duke of Roxburghe represents Kerr of Cessford. A distinct and powerful branch of the same name own the Marquis of Lothian as their chief. Hence the distinction betwixt Kerrs of Cessford and Fairnihirst.

2 The Cranstouns, Lord Cranstoun, are an ancient Border family, whose chief seat was at Crailing, in Teviotdale. They were at this time at feud with the clan of Scott; for it appears that the Lady of Buccleuch, in 1557, beset the Laird of Cranstoun, seeking his life. Nevertheless, the same Cranstoun, or perhaps his son, was married to a daughter of the same lady.

* The name is spelt differently by the various families who bear it. Carr is selected, not as the most correct, but as the most poetical reading.


Of noble race the Ladye came,
Her father was a clerk of fame,

Of Bethune's line of Picardie:'

He learn'd the art that none may name,
In Padua, far beyond the sea.2
Men said, he changed his mortal frame
By feat of magic mystery;

For when, in studious mood, he paced
St. Andrew's cloister'd hall,

His form no darkening shadow traced
Upon the sunny wall!"


And of his skill, as bards avow,
He taught that Ladye fair,

1See Appendix, Note E.

'Padua was long supposed, by the Scottish peasants, to be the principal school of necromancy. The Earl of Gowrie, slain at Perth, in 1600, pretended, during his studies in Italy, to have acquired some knowledge of the cabala, by which, he said, he could charm snakes, and work other miracles; and, in particular, could produce children without the intercourse of the sexes.-See the Examination of Wemyss of Bogie before the Privy Council, concerning Gowrie's Conspiracy.

The shadow of a necromancer is independent of the sun. Glycas informs us, that Simon Magus caused his shadow to go before him, making people believe it was an attendant spirit.— HEYWOOD's Hierarchie, p. 475. The vulgar conceive, that when a class of students have made a certain progress in their mystic studies, they are obliged to run through a subterraneous hall, where the devil literally catches the hindmost in the race, unless he crosses the hall so speedily, that the arch-enemy can only apprehend his shadow. In the latter case, the person of the sage never after throws any shade; and those, who have thus lost their shadow, always prove the best magicians.

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