"Little Musgrave" as written by and Martin Simpson Trad. Arr.....
As it fell out upon a day
As many in the year
Little Musgrave to the church did go
To see fair ladies there

The first to come down was dressed in red
And the second dressed in Pall
And the third to come down
was the Lady Barnard
The fairest of them all

She's tripped to the Little Musgrave
As bright as the summer sun
And then bethought this Little Musgrave
This lady's love I've won

Good day to you handsome youth
God make you safe and free
What would you give this day Musgrave
To spend the night with me

Oh, I dare not for my lands, lady
I dare not for my life
For the ring on your white finger says
You are Lord Barnard's wife

What if I am Lord Barnard's wife
Lord Barnard’s not at home
You shall sleep into his bed
And keep his lady warm

You nothing have to fear Musgrave
You nothing have to fear
I'll set the page outside my door
To watch til morning clear

And it’s woe be to the little footpage
In an ill death may he die
For he's away to the green wood side
As fast as he could fly

And when he come to the broke down bridge
He bent to his breast and he swam
And when he came to the other side
He took to his heels and run




And he run til he come to the green wood side
It was dark as dark could be
There he found Lord Barnard’s men
Sleeping ‘neath the trees

Arise, arise Master, he says
Arise and come with me
Your wife's in bed with the Little Musgrave
Arise right speedily

If this be the truth you tell to me
Gold shall be your fee
But if this be false you tell to me
Hanged you shall be

Go and saddle me the black he says
Go and saddle me the grey
But sound you not the horn said he
Lest our coming it should betray

But there was one in Lord Barnard's train
He loved the Little Musgrave
And he blew his horn so loud and shrill
Away Musgrave Away

Oh, I think I hear the morning cock
I think I hear the jay
I think I hear Lord Barnard's horn
Away Musgrave Away

Lie down, lie down, you little Musgrave
Keep my back from the cold
It's only Lord Barnard’s shepherd’s horn
Calling his sheep from the fold

Is not your hawk upon its perch
Your steed eats oats and hay
And you a gay lady in your arms
And yet you would away

So he's turned him right and round about
He fell fast asleep
When he woke Lord Barnard's men
Were standing at his feet




And it’s how do you like my bed, he says
And how do you like my sheets
And how do you like my lady gay
That lies in your arms and sleeps

It's very well I like your bed
Better I like your sheets
And better I like your lady gay
That lies in my arms and sleeps

Get up, get up Musgrave, he cries
Get up as quick as you can
In England it shall never be said
I slew a naked man

And slowly, slowly he got up
Slowly he put on
And slowly down the stairs he come
Thinking to be slain

So slowly, so slowly he rose up
And slowly he put on
And slowly down the stairs he goes
Thinking to be slain

And the very first blow Little Musgrave struck
It hurt Lord Barnard sore
The very first blow Barnard struck
Musgrave struck no more

How do you like his cheeks, lady
How do you like his chin
How do you like his fair body
Now there's no life within

It's very well I like his cheeks
It’s better I like his chin
And better I like his fair body
Than all your kith and kin

And he's taken up his long long sword
To strike a mortal blow
And through and through the Lady's heart
The bloody steel did go

As it fell out upon a day
As many in the year
Little Musgrave to the church did go
To see fair ladies there


Lyrics submitted by kno3

Little Musgrave song meanings
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