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Wiltshire Community History

Folk Song Information

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Book TitleAuthorDateNotes
Song TitleApe, Lion, Fox and Ass
Roud No.1325
Collected FromUnknown
Collected ByWilliams, Alfred
Alternative Title
Source PrimaryWSRO: 2598/36 Packet 2 - Oxfordshire: Williams, A: MS collection No Ox 180
Source SecondaryWilts and Gloucestershire Standard, 22nd April, 1916, Part 28, No. 12: Williams, A: Folk songs of the upper Thames, 1923 p 298
Song Lyrics
Verse 1

An ape, a lion, a fox and an ass,
Do show forth man's life as it were in a glass;
For apish we are until twenty and one,
And after that lions till forty be gone;
Then witty as foxes till three score and ten,
And after that asses, and so no more men.

Verse 2

A dove, a sparrow, a parrot, a crow,
As plainly sets forth how you women may know;
Harmless they are till thirteen be gone,
Then wanton as sparrows till forty draws on;
Then prating a parrots till three score be o'er,
Then birds of ill omen, and women no more.
Print Song Lyrics
Williams, Alfred: Ms / WGS: This old catch was popular at Aston and Bampton. The family of the Lucketts were notable singers at the first named place, as were the Tanners at Bampton. Words of David Ball and Henry Luckett, Aston, Oxfordshire.

Williams, Alfred: FSUT: Bishopstone, Wiltshire.

Transcribed and edited by Chris Wildridge, 2010.



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