صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

Through all the land great is the gild?

Of rustic folks that cry ;
Of bleeting sheep, frae they be filled,

Of calves and routing kye.

All labourers draws hame at even,

And can till other say,
Thanks to the gracious God of heaven,

Whilk sent this summer day.



As authors, editors, or translators of also many "bawdie songs and rymes the quaint little volume, whose title is into godly rhymes. He returned to Scotquoted above, are associated the names land after the death of James V., but did of three brothers, the sons, according not escape the vigilant eye of Cardinal to an entry in Calderwood's “ History” Beaton, from whom he fled into England. under the year 1540, of James Wedder- Robert, the youngest, also entered burn, merchant in Dundee. They were the church, and became vicar of Dunall three educated in St Andrews under dee, but evidently deemed it safest to Mr Gavin Logie, from whom they go abroad, like his elder brother; nor derived liberal opinions; and they all did he return home till after the death appear to have had poetical tendencies. of Beaton. His name appears in the

James, the eldest, to avoid the conse public records as the father of two sons, quences of disseminating reformed for whom he obtained letters of legitiopinions, in the form of satires and mation at Linlithgow, in 1552-3. comedies upon the vices of the Romish In his preface to the 1868 reprint of clergy, escaped to France, where he the unique 1578 edition of The Gude appears to have acted in a mercantile and Godlie Ballates, Dr Laing says : capacity at Dieppe or Rouen, till his “It is quite impossible, with the scanty death. His dramatic writings have not information we possess, to assign the been preserved.

various scriptural songs and psalms John, the second, unwillingly took contained in the present collection to orders as a priest in Dundee, but the respective authors or translators.” being too advanced in his opinions James Wedderburn, if a contributor, to be tolerated, he made his way to does not seem to have had any share in Germany, where he became a follower the publication of The Miscellany, which of Luther and Melancthon. He turned would appear to have grown in size as many of Luther's Hymns, as well as each successive edition of it was rethe Psalms, into Scottish metre; and quired by the popular demand which

it obtained. I Clamour.

Dr Laing classifies it under three


heads:-The ist, Doctrinal ; the 2d, phase of religious thought that exercised Psalms and Hymns, chiefly translations a powerful influence on the national life from the German ; the 3d, the most and character of Scotland, they are well characteristic part, Secular Songs con- worth the consideration of every student verted into Religious Poetry. The of Scottish history; and what once fired second part he supposes to have been the zeal of the religious enthusiast, contributed by John Wedderburn from or even soothed the sufferings of the his residence in Germany; and the third martyr, may now afford a rich fund of he attributes to Robert, who seems to pleasure to the lovers of quaint and have been less away from Scotland. primitive turns of thought and expres

All the brothers must have died some sion. time previous to the publication of the

To Robert Wedderburn Dr Laing is 1578 edition, the oldest known ; yet the disposed to ascribe the authorship of fact of its being popularly designated “The Complaint of Scotland.” Dr The Dundee Psalms, connects it with its Murray, its last editor, gives some good original compilers; and allowing that reasons against the common belief of its slight changes, and even additions, may having been printed in St Andrews, have been made subsequently, the gene

and considers that it is the work of a ral uniformity of style, thought, and French printer in Paris or Rouen. language throughout, is such as sug- This no way weakens Dr Laing's theory gests contemporaneous production. It regarding the authorship; for Robert is a curious fact, as Dr Laing observes,

Wedderburn was in France about the that there is no reference to the Wed time of its production, and on his return, derburns by Knox, or any of the refor- though of reforming tendencies, he mers except James Melville, who records claimed his vicarage in Dundee, which his having committed many of their harmonizes with the position of the hymns to memory when a boy at school author of "The Complaint.” in Montrose, in 1571. From a rigid poetical standpoint, the

THE LORD'S PRAYER AS A book might be deemed “beneath con

GRACE. tempt; ” but if thought, charged with passion and enthusiasm-expressed in Christ learned us on God how we should language that does not fail to communi- call, cate these-form a more essential part And bade us pray, syne hecht' to hear us of poetry than the elegant and symmetri- all. cal arrangement of ideas, then, that those Our Father whilk is in hevin sae high, hymns and songs have been popular Thy glorious name with us mot hallowit be. with a highly imaginative and poet. Let come to us thy kingdom and thy gloir, tical people, at a time when their pas

Thy will mot be fulfilled evermore sions were deeply roused, is a fact not

In eird, as it is in hevin, but variance." to be overlooked in judging of their Give us this day our daily sustenance ; poetical merits. As the exponent of a

1 The promised.

? Without difference.


[blocks in formation]




[We give enough show the drift of this piece, which may be termed a duet Sinners unto my sang advert, dialogue, in which the Flesh, like Milton's Quhilk Christ unto his Vangell kend, Devil, if it have not the best of the argu

And from your sinfull lyfe convert, ment, enlists the popular sympathy.]

Quhairwith ye do your God offend.

For Christ in his sweit Parabill, All Christin men tak tent and leir, ?

To save us is full plyabill,
How saul and body is at weir :

Gif we repent, and to him wend.
Upon this eird baith lait and air,
With cruel battle edentlie, 2

Ane certaine man of riche substance, And nane may not ane uther flie.

Had sonnes twa to him full deir,

And sone 3 with schort delyverance,
The Flesh.
The Flesh said, Sen I have haill,3

The youngest spak on this maneir:

Father, give me my part of geir, I will in youth with lustis daili, 4

Quhilk me belangis, les and mair,
Or age with sorrow me assaill :

I will na mair be thirlit 4 heir.
With joy I will my time ouredrive
And will not with my lustis strive.


The Father did his gude devyde
The Spreit.

Betwix them, bot the youngest Sone The Spreit said, Thocht I charge theenocht, Wald na mair with his Father byde, Dread God, and have his law in thocht, Bot tuke his part, and furth is gone: Thou hecht when thou to font was brocht, Intill ane strange and far countrie, Efter his law, lust to refrain,

And levand thair richt ryatouslie, And not to work his word again.

He waisted all his geir anone.


I Take heed and learn 2 Diligently.

3 Health 4 Deal.

Strong and able.
? A game of chance.

3 Soon.
4 Enthralled.

IX. The Sone said, Father of greit micht,

I knaw that I have sinnit soir, Contrair the hevin and in thy sicht

And I am worthie now no more That ony me thy Sone suld call. Bot his father, full liberall,

Callit his servandis him befoir.

IV. When all was gone, thair raise fra hand Ane derth, quhilk maid the vittell

skant, Baith far and neir throw all the land,

And he throw neid begouth to want :
Than to ane citizenar he yeid,
Quhilk send him forth his swyne to feid,
For falta of fude he was full fant.3

He wald have eitin with the swyne,

His houngrie stomak to fulfill :
But thocht he suld for hounger tyne,

Yit nane wald give him leif tha irtill :
When he come till him self againe,
This him alone he culd complaine,

In till his mynde with mourning still.

And kyndely to them can he say,

Ye bring me furth the best cleithing, And cleithe my Sone courtly and gay,

And on his finger ye put ane ring, Ye set on schone upon his feit, The quhilk ar trym and wounder meit,

That he be honest in all thing.

And slay that calf quhilk now is maid

Sa fat, and let us mak gude cheir,
For this my Sone the quhilk now was deid

Againe on lyfe is haill and feir . 1 My Sone was loist and now is found. And they within ane lyttill stound?

Began to myrrie be but weir.3

How mony servandis for thair wage,

Hes fude into my fatheris hous,
And I for hunger die and rage ?

Bot my father is gracious
Thairfoir till him I will me dres :
And schaw my sin and my distres
And say with voice full pitious,-

O Father, I have been too bauld

Sinnand contrair the hevin and thee, And not worthie that men me hauld,

Na mair thy Sone in ony degre: As ane of thy servandis me mak. With that he did his jornay tak

Hame till his Father haistilie.

The Eldest to the field was gone,

And when that he hame cummand wes, And hard the menstraly 4 anone,

The dansing and the greit blythnes,
Ane of his servandis he did call,
And said to him, Quhat menis all

This glaidnes, and this merrynes?

And when he come bot yit afar

His father had compassioun,
And ran him till or he was war,

And gave him consolatioun, And in his armes he did him fang, 5 And ever he kissit him amang

With friendly salutatioun.

Then answerit he, and said him till

Thy brother is cum hame againe,
Thairfoir thy father hes gart kill

His weill fed calf, and is full faine
That saif ressavit him hes he.
The Eldest wraith was and angrie,

And yeid not in throw greit disdaine:

I Went. 2 Want. 3 Faint.

4 Before he was aware.
5 Clasp

* Healthy and strong.
2 While, space of time.

3 Without doubt.
4 Minstrelsy.

XIV. And then come furth his father kynde

And prayit him richt fervently ; Bot he answerit, richt proude in mynde,

O Father myne, how lang have I Thy trew and faithfull servand bene; And never yit brak thy biddene,"

Bot thee obeyit faithfully.


Yit gave thow nocht of thy riches,

Sa mekle as ane small kyd to me, That I micht mak sum merrynes,

And with my lufaris blyith to be. Bot now becaus is cum againe Thy Sone quhilk waistit has, in vaine

Thy gudis into harlatrie;

Let us rejoice and sing,
And praise that michty King,
Quilk send his Sone of a Virgine bricht.

La, lay, la.
And on him tuke our vyle nature,
Our deidlie woundis to cure,
Mankynde to hald in richt.

La, lay, la.
Sanct Luk wrytis in his Gospell,
God send his Angell Gabriell
Unto that Virgine but defame.'

La, lay, la. For to fulfill the Prophesie, Was spousit with Josaph free, Mary scho had to name :

La, lay, la.

XVI. That calf quhilk fosterit was sa fair,

Thou hes gart kill at his plesour. His Father said, My Sone and air,

Of all my riches and treasour, What ever I have, all that is t'ayne, And thou art ever with me and myne,

And all is haill into thy cure.?

Thir wordis to hir he did reheirs.
Haill Mary ! full of grace,
The Lord God is with thee.

La, lay, la.
Thou blyssit Virgine mylde,
Thou sall consave ane chylde,
The pepill redeme sall he.

La, lay, la.

XVII. Thairfoir to us it was full meit

For to rejoyce and blyith to bc, With all our hart, and all our spreit,

Thy Brother saif and sound to se : For he was loist and now is win, And he was deid from all his kin,

And now alive againe is he:

Quhais power and greit micht,
Sall be in Goddis sicht,
Quhilk from the Father of micht is send.

La, lay, la.
Jesus his name ye call,
Quhilk sall be Prince ouir all,
His kingdome sall have nane end.

La, lay, la.

Our God and Father is full kynde

To sinners that ar penitent
With all thair heart and all thair mynde,

Schawand warkis that thay repent : And gif in Christis blude thay traist, 'Then sall he never them detest,

But saif them that thay be not schent.3

Than spak that Virgin fre,
Behald, how sall this be,
Seeing I knaw na man?

La, lay, la.

[blocks in formation]

1 Without stain.

« السابقةمتابعة »