Pedigree: Printed multiple times in the sixteenth century. A printing dated to 1550-60, by Wyllyam Copland, survived complete.
Synopsis: The men in the title of this tale are three outlaw archers. Cloudesley has a wife and children. Through multiple adventures the three are pardoned by the King, who later regrets doing so as he’d had an incomplete list of their crimes. Cloudesley “then beats all the King’s archers, and like William Tell…splits an apple on his son’s head at sixscore paces with an arrow, is made a gentleman, his wife chief gentlewoman of the Queen’s nursery; and all the three outlaws live with the King, and die good yeomen all.” (Furnivall)
Availability: TEAMS has an online version of the tale here: