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Broadside entitled 'Life and Death of the Old Woman of Radcliffe Highway'



Woman of Ratcliffe Highway.

This is to let you understand that an old woman of Ratcliffe
Highway, was drowned in a heavy shower of feathers last night,
6 weeks ago. I went in search of her as fast as I could run sit-
ting down by the side of a ditch, until I met John Jarvis a coach-
man, driving 6 dead horses under an empty post chaise laden with
6 miliners, 4 tambour workers, 2 milestones, and a sheet anchor
for a 74. I asked him if he could tell me about this old woman,
he said he could not, but John Manks could tell me all about her.
I asked him where he lived, he told me he lived beyond all parts
of the 3 flying jackasses, where the cock never crows, the wind
never blow, or old Tom Fox never blew his bugle-horn on the
top of a high hill down in a low hallow, in a short 4 square round
house, standing all alone by itself, and only 60 or 70 houses ad-
joining to it. When I received this information. I set off as fast
as 4 could run sitting down every minute to rest myself, until I
met an old man very had with the horn cholic in his big toe, the
headache in his belly, and the [ ]vel in the back of the neck
I called for a coach, drov   him "to an apothecarys' shop called
for 5 pints of pigeon's milk and 4 quarts of eels beastings, and
had it boiled in a leathern wooden iron pot, and gave it to him.
then conveyed him to the lock hospital, where he was put to bed,
and safely delivered of a blacksmith s anvil, 2 tons and a half
weight, with 9 grenadier fleas, fully acontred with a pair of pistols
a blunderbuss and 18 rounds of ball cartridges, was supposed to
be on the march to St Helena, to bring Bonaparte home on the
87th day of the hungriest month in the year 1800 and boiled
milk. At length I arrived at John Mank's house but was very
much surprised I could hear or see no one but was talking to them
all; saw John coming out of a vinegar bottle, so well be might
for he was a bottle maker to trade. I asked him if he could tell
me about this old woman ; he told me he could not ; but he wrote
a letter to her to-morrw night ere yesterday, 7 years ago, when he
was fast asleep and his eye open : he new her father well he was
smith and farrier to a pack of grey-hounds, and her mother was
sucklar to a young pig for Lady Doall in Shovcover street. where
they sell turkey cock's eggs tor buttermilk and where pigs play
cards for stirabout. When I received this information. I was
going to take my farewell of him when he told me I should not
go until I should see some of his wonders; the first great wonder
he showed me was six of the oldest daughte s spinning 6 hanks
of yarn each out of charcoal ; the next was little boys and 6 little
girls playing hide and seek under a hay cock made of stones ; the
next was he and his eldest son thrashing tobacco into peas one of
the peas jumped through a stone that was 6 feet thick, and killed
a dead dog that was lying on the other side, the dog jumped up
and began to bark. I jumped over the wall so well I might for
it was only the height of a cabbage stock, but that ca bage stock
was not much higher then Neilson's Monument in Glasgow. I
turned the dog inside out and he jumped after a hair that was fol-
lowed by 6 bog-trotters, and 4 pensioners, that lost their heads,
legs, and arms at the battle of Waterloo, and I thinking to my-
self that I could run as fast as any of them I clapped my two shin
bones in my pocket and followed them over hill and dale with the
hue and cry in my mouth until I came to the Currach of Kildare
where I saw the Belfast Mail Coach and the Londonderry steamer
engaged in a dreadful battle, firing boiling hot stirabout and
roasted potatoes at each other, one of potatoes struck the hare
over the right eye when out bounced the old woman. I immedi-
ately clapped her under my arm and made one jump, and landed
on the New Bridge accidentally, I struck my toe against the bat-
tlement, and both of us fell into the Clyde, where the old woman
being very much tird, she was not able to creep out of thewater,
so there she remained, and was burnt into ashes in a blaze of cold
water before I could save her.

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Probable period of publication: 1820-1840   shelfmark: RB.m.143(108)
Broadside entitled 'Life and Death of the Old Woman of Radcliffe Highway'
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