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Broadside ballad entitled 'The Tinker's Wedding'


The Tinker's Wedding.

In June, when broom an' bloom was seen,
An' brackens waved fu' fresh an' green,
An' warm the sun wi' silver sheen,
        The hills and glens did gladden, O.
Ae day, upon the border bent,
The tinkers pitched their gipsy tent,
An' auld an' young, wi' ae consent,
        Resolved to have a weddin', O.

        Diring do a do a day,
        Diring do a daddin', O,
        Diring do a do a day,
        Hurra! the tinker's wedding, O.

The bridegroom was a wild Norman Scot.
Wha' thrice had broke the nuptial knot,
An' ance was sentenced to be shot
        For breach o' martial orders, O.
His gleesome joe was Madge M'Kell,
A spaewife, match for Nick himsel',
Wi' clamour, cantrip, charm and spell,
        She frightit baith the borders, O.

Nae priest was there wi' solemn face;
Nae clerks to claim o' crowns a brace ;
The piper an' fiddler play'd the grace,
        To set their gabs asteerin, O.
'Mang beef an' mutton, pork an' veal;
'Mang painshes, plucks an' fresh cow-heel
Fat haggises and caller jeel,
        They claw't awa' careerin', O.

Fresh salmon newly ta'en in Tweed,
Saut ling an' cod o' Shetland breed,
They worried till kytes were like to screed,
        'Mang flaggons and flasks o' gravy, O.
There were raisin kail and sweet milk saps,
An' ewe-milk cheese in whangs and flaps ;

An' they roopit to gust their gabs an' craps,
        Right mony a cadger's cavie, O.   

The drink flew roun' in wild galore,
An' soon upraised a hideous roar,
Blythe Comus ne er a queerer core
        Saw seated round his table, O.   
They drank, they danced, they swore, they sang,
They quarrelled an' 'greed the hale day lang,
An' the wrangling that ran amang the thrang; -
        Wad match the tongue o' Babel, O.

The drink gaed down before their drouth,
That vexed baith mony a maw an' mouth;   
It damp'd the fire o' age an' youth,
        An' every breast did sadden, O,
Till three stout loons flew o'er the fell,
At risk o' life their drouth to quell,
An' robbed a neighbouring smuggler's still,
        To carry on the wedding, O.

Wi' thundering shouts they hailed them back,
To broach the barrels they werena slack,
While the fiddler's plane-tree leg they brak.
        For playing fareweel to whisky.
Delirium seized the uproarious thrang,
The bagpipes in the fire they flang,
An' sowerin' airns on the riggins rang,
        The drink play'd siccan a plisky.

The sun fell laigh owre Solway's banks,
While on they plied their roughsome pranks,
An' the stalwart shadows o' their shanks,
        Wide owre the muir were spreading.
Till heads-an-thraws amang the whins,
They fell wi' broken brows an' shins,
An' sair-craist bane filled mony skins,
        To close the tinker's wedding.

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Probable period of publication: 1840-1860   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.70(141b)
Broadside ballad entitled 'The Tinker's Wedding'
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