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Hind Etin / Young Hastings

[ Roud 33 ; Child 41 ; G/D 2:331 ; Ballad Index C041 ; trad.]

Alexander Keith: Last Leaves of Traditional Ballads and Ballad Airs James Kinsley: The Oxford Book of Ballads

Swedish group Ranarim sang Näcken bortför jungfrun (Abduction of the Fair Maiden) in 2003 on their Drone album För världen älskar vad som är brokot.

Gavin Davenport sang Young Hastings in 2010 on his CD Brief Lives. He noted:

This is a version of Hind Etin, itself related to Tam Lin and pretty scarce in oral sources! This version, based on Child’s C text, comes from Peter Buchan via James Nicol of Strichen. Both men were well known ‘rewriters’, and adapted Scandinavian versions to create theirs, but they are in good company here as I am not averse to a wee bit of mangling myself. Cockshutt Road is an ancient woodland just outside the Northern General hospital in Sheffield.

Jim Moray sang Hind Etin in 2012 on his CD Skulk. He noted:

Based on various version of Child Ballad no 41 (Roud 33), with new words and tune. I’ve stolen some elements from other ballads to fit—the “enchanted instrument” is a common device in European folklore from Jack Orion to The Pied Piper and The Magic Flute. In some versions Hind Etin is pardoned (over the course of another 20 or so verses) but for reasons of brevity I decided to let him have it in my final verse. However, there’s no reason why he might not have survived to return in the sequel…


Jim Moray sings Hind Etin

Lady Margaret sits in her father’s door,
Sewing a silken seam;
She’s heard a note from Elmond’s wood,
And wished that she was there.

She’s thrown her needle to her side,
And the thread down to her knee,
And she is gone to Elmond’s wood
As fast as she could fly.

She’s walked among the bustling wood,
And sat down by the stone,
And by it came up Hind Etin,
Saying, “Lady, leave alone.

You may not pull the flowers here,
Nor shade under this tree,
For I’m the keeper of this wood
And none may go but me.”

“I heard a note from Elmond’s wood
That floated on the wind,
The sweetest music that e’er I heard
That drew me here within.”

And something in her winsome smile
It caused his heart to moan;
And he’s fluted her into a trance
To keep her as his own.

He’s got the branches from the oak,
The rushes from the stream,
And he has made a shady bower
To keep his lady in.

She had not been so very long,
So long away from home,
Till she grew heavy round the waist
With child coming on.

She had not been but seven years,
Seven years away,
Till she has borne him seven sons
To keep her company.

But her heart did mourn the loss
Of the world she’s left behind,
That every hour of the day
The tears come rolling down.

Then up and spoke her eldest son,
Sat at his father’s knee:
“What makes our mother for to weep
And mourn continually.”

“Your mother was a king’s daughter,
Sprung from some high degree,
She would have had some noble prince,
Had she not been stole by me.“

So that night as they lay in one bower,
Before the close of day,
The eldest took his flute in hand
And he began to play.

He sounded such a soothing note,
For he had learned them well;
His father fell into a trance,
His mother from hers fell.

She’s take her children in her arms,
And started for the town,
And every mile this lady ran,
Her heart was beating strong.

And when she reached her father’s house
It was not even day,
And not one hour had even passed
Since she had been away.

The king’s awoken in the morn
And called his court around,
And he has sent his merry men
To burn the woodland down.

They lived inside the royal house,
Full all of mirth and glee;
And when the king he was deceased,
Heir to the crown was she.