These pretty babes, with hand in hand, Went wandering up and down; But never more could see the man Approaching from the town: Their pretty lips with black-berries, Were all besmeared and dyed; And when they saw the darksome night, They sat them down and cried.
Thus wandered these poor innocents, Till death did end their grief; In one another's arms they died, As wanting due relief: No burial this pretty pair Of any man receives, Till Robin-red-breast piously Did cover them with leaves.
And now the heavy wrath of God Upon their uncle fell; Yea, fearful fiends did haunt his house, His conscience felt an hell: His barns were fired, his goods consumed, His lands were barren made, His cattle died within the field, And nothing with him staid.
And in a voyage to Portugal Two of his sons did die; And to conclude, himself was brought To want and miser-y: He pawned and mortgaged all his land Ere seven years came about; And now at length this wicked act Did by this means come out:
The fellow that did take in hand These children for to kill, Was for a robbery judged to die; Such was God's blessed will; Who did confess the very truth, As here hath been displayed: Their uncle having died in gaol, Where he for debt was laid.
You that executors be made, And overse-ers eke Of children that be fatherless And infants mild and meek; Take you example by this thing, And yield to each his right, Lest God with such like misery Your wicked minds requite.
THE BEGGAR'S DAUGHTER OF BETHNAL GREEN.
It was a blind beggar, had long lost his sight, He had a fair daughter of beauty most bright; And many a gallant brave suitor had she, For none was so comely as pretty Bessee.