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Johny Faw ‑‑ or, The gypsie laddie

Language: English

The gypsies came to our good lord's gate,
And wow but they sang sweetly;
They sang sae sweet, and sae compleat,
That down came the fair lady.

And she came tripping down the stair,
And a' her maids before her;
As soon as they saw her weil-far'd face,
They cast the glamer o'er her.

'O come with me,' says Johny Faw,
'O come with me my deary;
'For I vow and swear, by the hilt of my sword,
'Your lord shall nae mair come near ye.'

"Here, take frae me this gay mantile,
"And bring to me a plaidie;
"Tho' kith and kin and a' had sworn,
"I'll follow the gypsie laddie.

"Yestreen I lay in a well-made bed,
"And my good lord beside me;
"This night I'll ly in a tenant's barn,
"Whatever shall betide me."

And when our lord came hame at e'en,
And speir'd for his fair lady,
The tane she cry'd, and the other reply'd,
She's awa' wi' the gypsie laddie.

"Gae saddle to me the black black steed,
"Gae saddle and make him ready,
"Before I either eat or sleep,
"I'll gae seek my fair lady."

And we were fifteen well-made men,
Of courage stout and steady,
And we were a' put down for ane,
A fair young wanton lady.


Johny Faw = Thomson noted: 'A person of the name of Johny Faw is said to have been king of the gypsies in the time of James V.
Glamer = spell, charm
Mantile = mantle
Plaidie = piece of twilled woollen cloth, chequered or tartan, used as a cloak
Speir'd = asked
The tane = the one

Submitted by Ferdinando Albeggiani


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Text added to the website: 2010-04-02.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:03:37
Line count: 32
Word count: 215

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