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​Matty Groves

This song is by Doc Watson and appears on the album Home Again! (1966).

Was on the high high holy day
The very best day in the year
Little Matty Groves had gone to church
Holy words for to hear
Holy words for to hear

The first to come down was dressed in red
And the second one dressed in green
The third to come down was Lord Daniel's wife
As fair as any queen
Just as fair as any queen

Then Matty Groves says to one of his men
"See the fair one dressed in white?
Although she is Lord Daniel's wife
I'll be with her tonight
I'll be with her tonight"

Well the little foot page was standing by
And heard every word that was said
He says "Lord Daniel shall know tonight
Before I go to bed
Before I go to bed"

He had 15 miles for to go that night
And 10 of them he run
He run till he come to the broke down bridge
Then he bent to his breast and swum
He bent to his breast and swum

He swum till he come to where the grass was green
He took to his feet and he run
He run till he come to Lord Daniel's Gate
Then he rattled at the bells and they rung
He rattled at the bells and they rung

"What news? What news?" Lord Daniel says
"What news to me have you brung?"
"Little Matty Groves is in the bed with your wife
And their hearts both beat as one
And their hearts both beat as one"

"Now if the truth you've told to me
A rich man you shall be
But if a lie you've told to me
I'll hang you to a tree
I'll hang you to a tree"

He gathered him up about 50 good men
He done it with a free good will
Then he popped his bugle unto his lips
And he blowed it loud and shrill
He blowed it loud and shrill

"I'd better get up," said little Matty Groves
"I'd better get up and go
I know your husband is a coming home
For I heard his bugle blow
I heard his bugle blow"

"Lay down, lay down, my precious one
Lay down and go to sleep
It's only my father's shepherd's horn
And he's a calling for his sheep
He's a calling for his sheep"

So they laid down together again
And they soon were fast asleep
And when they awoke it was broad daylight
Lord Daniel at their feet
Lord Daniel at their feet

"Get up from there your naked man
And put you on some clothes
I never intend for to have it said
That a naked man I slow
That a naked man I slow"

"Oh give me a chance," said little Matty Groves
"A chance to fight for my life
For there you have two very fine swords
And me not as much as a knife
And me not as much as a knife"

"Oh yes I have two very fine swords
And they cost me deep in the purse
You may have the finest one
And I will take the worst
Yes I will take the worst"

Then Matty Groves struck the very first lick
And he wounded Lord Daniel sore
Lord Daniel struck the very next lick
And he drove Matty Groves to the floor
He drove Matty Groves to the floor

Then he taken his lady by the hand
And he sat her on his knee
And he says, "Now which do you love the best?
Little Matty Groves or me?
Little Matty Groves or me?"

"Very well I like your rosy cheeks
Very well I like your chin
But better I love little Matty Groves
Than you and all of your kin
Than you and all of your kin

"You can dig my grave on a pretty green hill
Dig it wide and deep
And put little Matty Groves in my arms
Lord Daniel at my feet
Lord Daniel at my feet"