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Lyr Req: the ballad of grafton regis

GUEST,Jen 11 21 Jun 13 - 05:58 PM
Jim Dixon 23 Jun 13 - 09:08 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: the ballad of grafton regis
From: GUEST,Jen 11
Date: 21 Jun 13 - 05:58 PM

Please can anyone post the Lyrics to the Ballad of Grafton Regis.
This song tells of the meeting, and subsequent romance of Elizabeth Woodville (the White Queen) and Edward IV.


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Subject: Lyr Add: YE KING AND YE LADYE GRAY...GRAFTON REGIS
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 23 Jun 13 - 09:08 AM

The text appears to be a modern one by Thomas Kay, circa 1914. A tune is given in the book cited:

From The story of the "Grafton" portrait of William Shakespeare... by Thomas Kay (London: S.W. Partridge, 1914), page 77:

YE KING AND YE LADYE GRAY: A BALLAD OF GRAFTON REGIS
Air—Traditional

Ye Ladye Gray a widow left,
Her children of their lands bereft.
Went in ye woods so neat and deft,
        To sue King Edward's mercies.
She met a youth with bow and speare,
Swift on ye track of wounded deere.
She call'd him, "Sir, please you come here,
        And tell me where ye King is."

The youth, he stopped, concealed a sneere
"What would you with the King, my deare?"
When in her eye there sprang a teare,
        He said—"Why here the King is."
Behold them now each one beside,
The King he woos her for his bride,
She will his wife or nought betide
        The King at Grafton Regis.

Ye Ladye Gray had many a fighte,
The King her favours found but slighte,
He married her at dead of night,
        The bride of Grafton Regis.
'Twas on the first of smiling May
When birds do sing and lambkins play,
A Queen was made of Ladye Gray—
        His Queen at Grafton Regis.

And when she came to London towne,
The Lords and Dukes and Earls did frowne
That she should dare to weare the crowne
        Above their gracious lieges.
Her father, he was made an Earl,
Advancement made to many a churl,
While to the King she was the pearl
        He found at Grafton Regis.

T. K.

And now began a chapter in the life of Elizabeth Gray which opened with such fair promise of happiness, but which was to end in unutterable misery for herself and violent deaths for the two Edwardian princes born to her.

It was in the month of April, 1464, that young King Edward IV. stayed in the woods of Whittlebury instead of joining his army in the north.
"The Lady Gray was still young, and her remarkable beauty was little impaired by the sorrows she had endured; and the King, while hunting, chancing to visit Grafton, she took the opportunity to throw herself at his feet, and entreat the restoration of her husband's estates for the sake of her unfortunate children. At the sight of her beauty, heightened by her suppliant attitude, the inflammable king fell suddenly and deeply in love with her. He in his turn became a suitor, and as her prudence or her virtue would not allow her to listen to dishonourable proposals, the infatuated monarch privately married her."*
There is a more pastoral view of this story told in ballad form. It is said that hearing of the King hunting in Whittlebury Forest the Lady Elizabeth Gray sought for him there.

It was under a spreading oak tree that tradition says they met, and this giant of the forest, which bears the name of the "Queen's Oak" still remains. Though still green and vigorous, the trunk of this mighty tree is hollow, and some idea of its girth may be gained from the fact that twelve persons could stand together upright within.

The story of King Edward's wooing of Elizabeth Woodville has been told by many writers. It also provides the subject of one of the scenes in Shakespeare's King Henry VI. Pt. iii., Act iii., Sc. ii.

King Edward and Lady Gray were married privately at Grafton House on May Day, 1464. He was compelled for some time to visit her only in secret; in fact, five months had elapsed before he ventured to inform the Lords of his Council that he had married the Lady of Grafton Regis.

* Maunder's " Treasury of History." Fol. 247.


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Mudcat time: 21 June 6:34 PM EDT

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