A lamentable Song of the Death of King Leir and his Three Daughters
. To the tune of
When flying Fame.
PRELUDE OF THE FOUNDER OF THE DANISH HOUSE
LO, praise of the prowess of people-kings
of spear-armed Danes, in days long sped,
As ye came from the holy land
Met you not with my true love
By the way as you came?
Beleeue me now I tell it for no tale,
There is a Queene, or else a Goddesse t'one,
That without helpe of man, or any male
HROTHGAR spake, helmet-of-Scyldings: --
"Ask not of pleasure! Pain is renewed
to Danish folk. Dead is Aeschere,
of Yrmenlaf the elder brother,
In somer, when the shawes be sheyne,
And leves be large and long,
Hit is full mery in feyre foreste
To here the foulys song,
Adam lay ibounden,
Bounden in a bond.
Four thousand winter
Thoght he not too long.
An ancient story Ile tell you anon
Of a notable prince, that was called King John;
And he ruled England with maine and with might,
Nowell, nowell, nowell, nowell,
Tydyng' gode y thyngke to telle
The borys hede that we bryng here,
Betokeneth a p'nce with owte pere,