The Three Ravens - Poem by Anonymous

There were three ravens sat on a tree,
They were as black as they might be.

The one of them said to his mate,
'Where shall we our breakefast take?'

'Downe in yonder greene field,
There lies a knight slain under his shield.

'His hounds they lie downe at his feete,
So well they can their master keepe.

'His haukes they flie so eagerly,
There's no fowle dare come him nie.'

Downe there comes a fallow doe,
As great with yong as she might goe.

She lift up his bloudy hed,
And kist his wounds that were so red.

She got him up upon her backe,
And carried him to earthen lake.

She buried him before the prime,
She was dead herselfe ere even-song time.

God send every gentleman,
Such haukes, such hounds, and such a leman.

Form: Ballad

Comments about The Three Ravens by Anonymous

  • Britte Ninad (8/14/2018 1:02:00 AM)

    its brilliantly penned- so deep allegorical meaning it carries (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Mr Salte (7/30/2016 12:19:00 PM)

    Please, What really matter about this poem? (Report) Reply

  • Moira Cameron (2/26/2016 11:50:00 PM)

    This is known as a Child Ballad (Child #26) . Francis Child was a folklorist who collected traditional ballads. This version is one of many. It is an Anglicised version of an even older Scottish ballad, The Twa Corbies:

    As I was walking all alane,
    I heard twa corbies makin a mane;
    The tane unto the ither say,
    Whar sall we gang and dine the-day?

    In ahint yon auld fail dyke,
    I wot there lies a new slain knight;
    And nane do ken that he lies there,
    But his hawk, his hound an his lady fair.

    His hound is tae the huntin gane,
    His hawk tae fetch the wild-fowl hame,  
    His lady's tain anither mate,
    So we may mak oor dinner swate.

    Ye'll sit on his white hause-bane,
    And I'll pike oot his bonny blue een;
    Wi ae lock o his gowden hair 
    We'll theek oor nest whan it grows bare.

    Mony a one for him makes mane,
    But nane sall ken whar he is gane;
    Oer his white banes, whan they are bare,
    The wind sall blaw for evermair.
    (Report) Reply

  • (10/25/2015 5:16:00 PM)

    ......wonderful poem......the spelling is different and nice ★ (Report) Reply

  • (11/19/2005 4:57:00 PM)

    Enter the title 'The Three Ravens' on Google and view the ontario site to see the 'olde' meaning of some of the words. This is from the period -1600

    (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: tree, song, red, god, time, raven

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

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