Kytt hathe lost hur Key

Traditional

Audio

This example of "Kytt hathe lost hur Key" is performed by Andrew Scarhart.
Please refer to Cantaria's Copyright information

NB: The recording goes with the second set of lyrics

Background notes

The following notes and both sets of lyrics are excerpted from Old Songs and Ballads, E.F. Rimbault, printed 1851.
View at as an e-book, digitized by Google Books

The following ballad possesses a tinge of humour rarely found in the productions of the early part of the sixteenth century. It is preserved among the Ming's Manuscripts, in the British Museum. In 1561-2 John Tysdale had a license for printing a Ballad, entitled 'Kytt hath loste hyr Keye,' which may possibly be the first version below.

The second version of this song seems to be an answer or continuation of the first ballad.

Version one

Kytt hath lost hur keye, hur key,
Goode Kytt hath lost hur key,
She is so sorry for the cause,
She wotts not what to say;
Goode Kitt's so sorry for the cause,
She wotts not what to say.

Goode Kytt she wept, I ask'd why so
That she made all this mone?
She sayde, alas! I am so woo,
My key is lost and gone.

Kytt hathe lost, etc.

Kytt, why did ye losse your key,
Fore sothe ye were to blame,
Now ev'y man to you will say,
Kytt Losse Key is your name.

Kytt hathe lost, etc.

Goode Kytt she wept and cry'd, alas!
Hur key she cowde not fynde;
In faythe I trow in bowrs she was,
With sum that were not kinde.

Kytt hathe lost, etc.

Now, farewell Kytt, I can no more,
I wott not what to say,
But I shall pray to Gode therefore
That you may fynde your key.

Kytt hathe lost, etc.

Version two:

Kitt hath lost her key,
But I have one will fytt
Her locke, if she will try,
And doe not me denie:
I hope she hath more wytte.

My key is bright, not rusty,
It is so oft applied
To lockes that are not dusty,
Of maydens that are lusty,
And not full fillde with pride.

Then, Kitt, be not too prowde,
But try my readie key,
That still hath bene allowde
By ladyes faire a crowde,
The best that ere they see.

You can but try, and than,
If it fitts not, good bye:
Go to some other man,
And see if anie can
Doe better, Kitt, then I.

But neere come backe to mee,
When you are gone away,
For I shall keepe my key
For others, not for thee:
Soe either go or stay.