Lady Isabel [Child 261]

DESCRIPTION: Isabel's stepmother accuses Isabel of being "her father's whore," and tries to have her drink (poisoned) wine. At church; her mother advises her to take the poison. She bids farewell to her servants, drinks the poison, and dies. The stepmother goes mad
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: c. 1818 (Glenbuchat Ballads)
KEYWORDS: death stepmother poison homicide mother wine
FOUND IN: Britain(Scotland)
REFERENCES (3 citations):
Child 261, "Lady Isabel" (1 text)
GlenbuchatBallads, pp. 109-112, "Burd Isbell" (1 text)
Leach, pp. 633-635, "Lady Isabel" (1 text)

Roud #3884
NOTES [64 words]: Something seems to be wrong with this ballad; there are too many loose ends. While the stepmother's actions are perhaps understandable (she thinks Isabel's father pays more attention to his daughter than his new wife), Isabel's love beyond the sea appears for only one stanza, her mother's behavior is inexplicable, and Isabel is much too passive. Presumably something has been lost. - RBW
Last updated in version 2.6
File: C261

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