BYGONE SUSSEX - online book

Essays, Sketches and Illustrations of bygone Sussex

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152
BYGONE SUSSEX.
privilege of rescuing the handsome Englishman from the headsman, but he declines their offer. Then another damsel steps forward, and protests that she acts from love and not from mercy, and as love begets love, he consents to live.
" ' I goe my, my love,' shee said,
' I run, I fly for thee ! And gentle Headsman spare a while
My Lover's life for mee !' Unto the Duke shee went,
Who did her griefe remove ; And with an hundred Maidens more,
Shee went to fetch her love.
With musicke sounding sweet,
The foremost of the traine, This gallant Maiden like a Bride,
Did fetch him back againe : Yea hand in hand they went
Unto the Church that day, And they were married presently
In sumptuous rich array.
A sweet thing is love,
It rules both heart and mind;
There is no comfort in the world To women that are kind."
The belief that a woman might beg a con­demned man as a husband is widespread, and may not impossibly have had some foundation in fact in ages when death was the penalty of even
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