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Wiltshire Community History

Folk Song Information

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Book TitleAuthorDateNotes
Song TitleLeather breeches
Roud No.12739
Collected FromAvery, William
Collected ByWilliams, Alfred
Alternative Title
Source PrimaryWSRO: 2598/36 Packet 2 - Gloucestershire: Williams, A: MS collection No Gl 35
Source SecondaryUnpublished
Song Lyrics
Verse 1

When I was quite a little boy
My life passed as sweet as honey,
Until my Dady died in Town
And left me all is money;
O the arrows ploughs and Riches
With Grunnters Half a Score,
And a pair of Leather Breeches.

Verse 2

One night as I went to Woo
A Damsel Fine and Dapper,
She looked at me so Black,
And Ding Dong Whent Her Clapper;
O she says I hate your plans
My Hearts against your Riches,
But I cant Bare a Chap
Wat Wears them Leather Breeches.”

Verse 3

One night I went to Woo
My Sports for to Ralley,
I got Insults and Speeches
In Every Lane and Alley;
They did against me Did Conspier
Print Song Lyrics
Note 1

Alfred Williams - 'This was sung for many years by George Hicks of Aldsworth, formerly of Sherborne, an old Morris dancer.'

Note 2

At this point the manuscript ends. It is the reverse side of the 'Ploughman' song Gl 33, a version of 'Painful plough'. It may, in the light of Note 3 be in Avery’s own hand.

Note 3

In the note to the version of this song which appears in the Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard Williams says that he collected the song from William Avery. Note 1 is the attribution on the manuscript. However, George Hicks died in 1900 and his wife, Emma, was lodging with William Avery in 1901.

Williams used the passive form of describing a singer’s location when he did not collect the song in that place. Of Ogbourne when describing David Sawyer’s location is an example. Here Williams does not say that he collected it from Hicks, but that it was sung by him. Hence my attribution to Avery.

Transcribed and edited by Chris Wildridge, 2014.



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