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Blind Harry's Wallace

The Life and Heroick Actions of the Renoun'd Sir William Wallace,
General and Governour of Scotland
by William Hamilton of Gilbertfield

Book V (Continued)
How WALLACE escaped out of St. Johnstoun past to Elchock Park, and killed Fawdoun. How he past to Lochmabane. How WALLACE wan the Castle of Crawford, and killed the Captain thereof

Read a synopsis of this book in modern American English.

Amidst strong Guards beneath an aged Oak,
Evited at this Time the fatal Stroak
Steven Ireland here, and faithful Kierly shew'd
Their Valour Brave, and firm by Wallace stood.
Upon the Ground, at this Bout Sixty more
Of English slain lay welt'ring in their Gore;
Nine more of Scots were of warm Life bereft
And only Sixteen now with Wallace left,
Who got clear off, whilst Butlers wearied Rout
Confus'dly fled, 'twixt Parties they got out.
The English-Men not knowing where they went,
Set the Sluth-hound upon the bloody Scent.
With Nose a Ground closely she did pursue
Till soon both Parties were in others view:
The Enemy pursued on Coursers fleet,
While the brave Scots depend on nimble Feet.

Of rising Ground they had Two Miles in length
Before they could arrive at any Strength,
Good hope they had, for Day was nigh expir'd
But to their grief ill-fated Fowden tyr'd.
Wallace was loath to leave him on the Way
Lest to aproaching Foes he'd fall a Prey,
Urg'd him t'exert his Strength with Words of Love,
But all in Vain no further would he move.
The Chief enrag'd, his Sword with fury drew,
And at one Stroak the lagging Traitor slew;
Backward a lifeless headless Lump he lay,
While the twinn'd Head babled its Life away.
Just was the Act, he was a Villain found
Useful in this. His Blood would stop the Hound.
Sure proof of Falshood, short way had they gone
In prime of Years strong Muscles clad each bone.
Him thus dispatch'd, Wallace his Foll'wers cheers,
Then sprung the Mountain swift as bounding Deers.

Ireland mean time, and gallant Kierly stood
Eastward of Dupline, in a scroggy Wood,
By this the Stars were twinkling from on high
From every opening of the cloudy Sky.
Soon as the English came where Fawdon lay,
The Blood-Hound ceas'd to tract the flyers Way;
Nor farther mov'd, her Scent now being sunk,
In this new Stream of Blood her Nose had Drunk;
And now they deem'd that the despairing Scots
Had fighting been, and cut each others Throats.

Kierly and Steven unknown mixt with the Croud,
That press'd about, and Faudon's Body view'd,
And as Sir Gerrard bow'd to take a look,
Kierly a Dagger in his Bosom struck,
Beneath his Armour upward gave the Wound,
And brought this Leader stagg'ring to the Ground.
Soon as his Men the Accident espy'd,
"Treason!" around with mournful Shrieks they cry'd.
Justly convinc'd that this audacious Blow,
Was giv'n by Wallace' self, or such a Foe,
'Midst their Confusion, aided by the Gloom,
The Two brave Scots escap'd impending Doom.

With Grief and Madness Butler's Colour chang'd,
While he saw gasping Heroun unreveng'd;
Part of his Host he sent t'interr the Slain,
Some to the Woods dispatch'd, some to the Plain,
Whil'st he himself with a strong Party lay,
To guard the Passes, till returning Day.

Next page: Book V, Continued

The ballad, The Life and Heroick Actions of the Renoun'd Sir William Wallace, General and Governour of Scotland, by William Hamilton of Gilbertfield, 1722, is in the public domain.