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Broadside ballads entitled 'Banks of Sweet Dundee' and 'Smell! Smell! His Breath!'




It's of a farmer's daughter,
So beautiful I'm told,
Her parents died and left her,
Five hundred pounds in gold,
She lived with her uncle,
The cause of all her woe,
And yon soon shall hear this maiden fair,
Did prove his overthrow.

Her uncle had a ploughboy,
Young Mary loved full well,
And in her uncle's garden,
Their tales of love would tell.
And there was a wealthy squire.
Who often came her to see,
But still she loved her plough-boy,
On the banks of sweet Dundee.

It was one summer's morning.
Her uncle went straightway,
He knocked at her bedroom door,
And thus to her did say,
Come rise up, pretty maiden,
A lady you may be,
The squire's waiting for you,
On the banks of sweet Dundee.

A fig for all your squires,
Your lords and dukes likewise,
My William's hand appears to me,
Like diamonds in my eyes,
Begone unruly female,
Yon ne'er shall happy be,   
For I mean to banish William,
From the banks of sweet Dundee.

Her uncle and the squire,
Rode out one summer's day,
Young William he's in favour,
Her uncle he did say,
Indeed! 'tis my intention,
To tie him to a tree,
Or else to bribe the pressgang,
On the banks of sweet Dundee,

The pressgang came to William,
When he was all alone,
He boldly fought for liberty,
But there were three to one,
The blood did flow in torrents,
Come kill me now said he,
I would rather die for Mary,
On the banks of sweet Dundee

This maid was one day walking,
Lamenting for her love,
She met the wealthy squire,
Down in her uncle's grove,
He put his arms around her,



E'er the tea party it had begun,
I eat an onion?only one,
Folks held their noses seemed ill at ease.
Stirred to and fro, made remarks like

Just smell his breath, do smell his breath,
Just take one sniff, if you wish for
sudden death,
Then in a rage, one big fellow cried,
Here's a cake, for heaven's sake, go
outside,                        [breath I
And change your breath, and change your
Fain would I linger yet must be gone,
Leaving those custards all alone,
Sadly I find my way to the door,
Loud beats my heart as the   shoe-
blacks roar.?

Just smell his breath, do smell his breath
One little sniff is enough to cause sud-
den death,
Folks made a rush for the other side,
Hurrying, scurrying, this they cried,
Do change your breath, oh! change your


Stand off! base man, said she,
You sent the only lad I love,
From the banks of sweet Dundee.

He clasped his arms around her,
And tried to throw her down,
Two pistols and a sword she spied,
Beneath his morning gown,
Young Mary took the weapons,
His sword he used so free,
But she did fire and shot the squire,
On the banks of sweet Dundee.

Her uncle overheard the noise,
He hastened to the ground.
Since you have killed the squire,
I'll give you your death wound,
Stand off, then said young Mary,
Undaunted I will be,
The trigger she drew and her uncle slew,
On the banks of sweet Dundee.

The doctor soon was sent for,
A man of noted skill.
Likewise came his lawyer.
For him to make his will,
He willed his gold to Mary,
Who fought so manfully,
And now she lives quite happy,
On the banks of sweet Dundee.

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Probable period of publication: 1880-1900   shelfmark: RB.m.143(034)
Broadside ballads entitled 'Banks of Sweet Dundee' and 'Smell! Smell! His Breath!'
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