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Broadside letter concerning a medley of Scottish folk songs


LETTER from a Friend on a Journey to the North, to an In
habitant of Auld Reekie; being a CURIOUS and ENTER-


HAVING lately had a Northern
Excursion, I regretted much not having the
pleasure of your company, as I am very cer-
tain the company and entertainment I met
With would have afforded you a fund of
amusement. I shall, as near as I can recol-
lect, give you a detail of the proceedings.

AFTER getting some cauld kail in Aber-
deen with John Roy Stewart, I accompanied
him to the house below the hill, where green
grow the rashes,   and where two or three of
the merry lads of Ayr were taking their botlle
of punch,   having   lately come   fire   bonny
Doon.    The Landlord was Johnny M'Gil,
who you ken married the subcr's daughter
She gave us a hearty welcome, for blythe wae
she butt and ben, and when she came ben she
bobbit, and introduced us to Maggie Lauder
Mary Grey, &c.,   not forgetting the bonnie
nce   thing.    They were all waiting the ar-
rival of Lucy Campbell,   frae within a mile o'
Edinburgh ;   for you maun ken Lucy was to
be married to the ranting roarin Highland
man: So down we sat to cakes and ale, and
were very happy,   when ope flew the door
and in a short moment started the soldier
laddie.    I thought it had been Johnny com-
ing. but na, faith, says Peggie Bawn, it is
John Anderson, my joe, frae bonnie Dundee,
for he would be a soldier.    Most of us know-
ing John,   we wanted him to   take a seat
He took out. his fiddle,   and was beginning
to touch the bush aboon Traquair ;   but was
stopped by Duncan Grey,   who   begged he
would first favour us with God save the King.
Hang the King, says Charlie Stewart, who
was immediately knocked down by Jack, the
brisk young drummer,   who is a bonnie bold
soldier.    We all thought that Lewie Gordon
would have interfered, who was standing in a
corner whistling Johnnie Cope, When in came
the wandering sailor singing hearts of oak,
with black-eyed Susan in the one hand, and
the oak stick in the other.    Bare Lewie did
not like a' that and a' that,   but slunk away
as pale as Hosier's ghost.    Duncan Davison
was begining to cry kick the rogues out, when
in the midst of the scuffle,   we had notice by
Roys wife of Aldevalloch, of the arrival of the
young couple frae the walking of the fauld ;
when the cry was, busk ye,   busk ye, fy let
us a' to the bridle.    By this you will under-
stand that Johnnie has made a wedding o't.
They were just going,   when Jenny Nettles
hinted that the ale wife and her barrel must

be paid; on which we bid the gudewife count
her lawin ; so each of us had a saxpence un-
der our thumb, and Jennie's bawbee made up
the same.    On coming to the back of the
change-house, where the wedding was held,
near the mill,   mill, O,   we were met by the
lads of Doon, gallanting the lasses o' Stew-
arton.    The best man was ranting roaring
Willie, and I as sure you Wilde is a wanton
wag; the best maid was Catherine Ogie,
who is the bonniest lass in a' the world except
my jo, Janet.    Our dinner consisted of the-
roast beef of Old England, lumps of pudding,
the haggis o' Dunbar, bannocks o' barley meal,
&c. &c.,?as for myself, they put a sheep's
head in the pat:   And after dinner we had
dribbles o' brandy ; the whole cry was fill the
stoup and haud it clinking, by no means drink
hooly and fairly.    Then, come gie's a song
the ladies cry; so Patie came up frae the glen
and whistled o'er the lave o't   was sung, and
Maggie' tocher.    Oh, if you had seen auld
Rob Morris laughing at the auld wife ayont
the fire singing,   O as I was kissed yestreen
We now were sae merry growing, as we two
hae been, and some of them began to trip
upon trenchers:    So the dansing commenced.'
The bride came up frae the byre, and led
down with one of the braw lads of Galla-
water, to the tune of the Campbells are com-
ing.   The glancing o' her apron on, silken snood,
and the gowd on her garters, made my heart
gae pittie pattie.    I danced a reel with the
maid o' the mill and the shepherd's wife, to
the tune I'll make fain to follow me.    An-
drew wi' his cuttie gun was at kiss me sweetly
wi' Bess the gawkie.    In short, we a' danced
heartily,   but I observed Jenny dang the
weaver and scoffed and scorned at him, say-
ing, O gin ye mere ane and twenty,   Tam.
After this we had gude night and joy.    I
came lodling hame, not drunk nor yet sober,
and expected a bonnie tree house and a canty
wee fire ;   but I could not open the door till
three,   nor waken sleepin Maggie :    At last
my o in kind dcerie heard me,   and she rose
and let me in.    By this time I was a sleepy
boddie,   and got to bed by the light of the
bonny grey eyed morn.

I expect, in return for the above detail,
you will favour me with an authentic copy of
your journal first cruise you take,

Yours truly,

1st day 5th month,, A. D. 1822.

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Date of publication: 1822   shelfmark: L.C.1268
Broadside letter concerning a medley of Scottish folk songs
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