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The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
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DIMEV 2192
IMEV 1314
NIMEV TM 649
I have twelve oxen that be fair and brown
A poem about oxen, possibly erotic — four couplets and two-line refrain
Note: Considered as an English englyn, cf. Journal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society 4, 130.
Subjects: cattle; erotic verse
Versification: — two-line — aa



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Balliol College 354, p. 376
First Lines:
I haue tweff xij oxen þat be fayre and brown
& they go a grasynge down by the town…
Last Lines:
…With hay with howe with hay
Sawiste not þou myn oxen þou litill prety boy
Explicit
Facsimiles:
Early Manuscripts at Oxford University: Facsimile of Oxford, Balliol MS 354. (http://image.ox.ac.uk/show?collection=balliol&manuscript=ms354).
Editions:
Flügel, Ewald. “Liedersammlungen des XVI Jahrhunderts….” Anglia 26 (1903): 94-285: 197.
Chambers, Edmund Kerchever, and Frank Sidgwick. Early English Lyrics…. London: Buller, 1907, 1911 et seq: 250.
Dyboski, R., ed. Songs, Carols and Other Miscellaneous Poems from Balliol MS. 354, Richard Hill’s Commonplace Book. EETS e.s. 101 (1908); repr. 1984: 104.
Robbins, Rossell Hope, ed. Secular Lyrics of the XIV and XV Centuries. 2nd ed. Oxford: Clarendon, 1955: 42.
Chambers, Edmund Kerchever. English Literature at the Close of the Middle Ages. Oxford History of English Literature. Oxford: Clarendon, 1945: 113.
Sisam, Celia, and Kenneth Sisam, eds. The Oxford Book of Medieval English Verse. Oxford: Clarendon, 1970: 527.
Luria, Maxwell Sidney, and Richard L. Hoffman, eds. Middle English Lyrics. New York: Norton, 1974: 122-3.
Orme, Nicholas. “Children and Literature in Medieval England.” Medium Ævum 68 (1999): 218-46: 222.