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"Stay, stay, dearest Phoebe, why are you in such haste?
The hills and the meadows all day I have traced,
In search of a fair one who did me disdain
You're out to reward me for all my past pain."
"Severe bold Escallion, how dare you be seen
With a virgin like me now is scarcely sixteen?
To be seen all alone with a man I'm afraid
The world soon will call me no longer a maid."
"Never mind what the world says, it will all prove a lie,
We are not all alone, there's a cottage close by;
Let them judge by our actions but be cheerful, my dear;
No harm is intended to my Phoebe I'll swear."
"Severe bold Escallion, you may say what you will,
You may lie, swear, or flatter, or try your best skill;
But before I will be conquerèd I will have you to know,
I will first die a virgin, so I pray, let us go."
"Oh, Phoebe, my charmer, such thoughts I never had,
I come for to know if to-morrow you'll wed;
But since you have so slighted me, I will bid you adieu,
I will go and seek some other girl that's more kinder than you."
"Stay, stay, bold Escallion, one moment more, stay,
And I will consent if you mean what you say;
Let the morrow first come, my love, and the church you will find,
The girl you thought slight you she will always prove kind."
Collected in 1958 from Freeman Bennett of St. Paul's, NL, by Kenneth Peacock and published in Songs Of The Newfoundland Outports, Volume 2, pp.510-511, by the National Museum of Canada (1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved.
Kenneth Peacock noted that this Newfoundland variant comes from a poem entitled Corydon And Phoebe: A Dialogue, which was included in a twenty-four page musical folio called "The New Ballads sung by Mr. Lowe and Miss Stevenson at Vauxhall, set by Mr. Worgan, Book the Fourth, 1755. London: Jn. Johnson." A similar variant called Colin And Phoebe may be found in Traditional Tunes by Frank Kidson who quotes the original poem. An even earlier and more 'literary' version called Corydon And Phyllis was published in the seventeenth century.