Matty Groves Lyrics

A holiday, a holiday, and the first one of the year,
Little Matty Groves came to the church, the gospel for
to hear.
And then came in Lord Donald's wife and she never
looked so fine,
And as she caught Little Matty's eye, she fair could
read his mind.
The parson he was long of tooth and longer in the wind
As he preached of virtues chaste and dull and wages had
from sin.
And when the sermon it was done the lady looked about,
And again she saw Little Matty Groves walking in the

"Come home with me Little Matty Groves, come home with
me tonight.
Come home with me Little Matty Groves and lay with me
till light."
"Oh I can't go home, I won't go home and lay with you
By the rings on your fingers I can tell, you are Lord
Donald's wife."
"Well may I be Lord Donald's wife, but Lord Donald's
not at home.
He is gone in the far cornfields and has left me all
And a servant who was standing by and hearing what was
He swore Lord Donald he would know before the sun would
And in his haste to tell the tale he rent his breast
and ran.
And when he came to the broad mill stream he took off
his shoes and swam.

"Lord Donald, sir, I chanced to hear your lady on this
She's bedded down with Matty Groves while you a far
Lord Donald called his servants by, "Fetch to me my
If you speak the truth great reward you'll have, if
lies it'll be the worse."

Little Matty Groves he laid down to take a little
When he awoke Lord Donald was standing at his feet
Saying, "How do you like my feather bed? How do you
like my sheets?
How do you like my lady chaste who lies in your arms
"Oh well I like your feather bed and well I like your
But better I like your lady gay who lies in my arms
"Get up, get up!" Lord Donald cried, "Get up as quick
as you can.
For it won't be said in fair England that I slew a
naked man."
"Oh I can't get up, I won't get up. I can't get up for
my life.
For you have two long beaten swords and I not a pocket
"Well it's true I have two beaten swords and they cost
me deep in the purse.
But you will have the better of them and I will have
the worse."
"And you will strike the very first blow and strike it
like a man.
And I will strike the very next blow and I'll kill you
if I can."

So Matty struck the very first blow and he hurt Lord
Donald sore.
Lord Donald struck the very next blow and Matty struck
no more.
And then Lord Donald took his wife and set her on his
Saying, "Who do you love the best of us, Matty Groves
or me?"
And then up spoke his own sweet wife, never heard to
speak so free,
"I'd rather a kiss from dead Matty's lips than you and
your finery."
Then Lord Donald he jumped up and loudly he did bawl.
He struck his wife right through the heart and pinned
her 'gainst the wall.
"A grave, a grave" Lord Donald cried, "to put these
lovers in.
But bury my lady at the top for she was of noble kin."

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