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Courtship & marriage

Constant pair; or, the pretty prentice boy

(37) Constant pair; or, the pretty prentice boy


                                    OR, THE

            Pretty Prentice Boy.

Come all your pretty maidens, and a story I'll tell,
Of a rich merchant's daughter, near Liverpool did dwell
flier cheeks like roses, with a pretty black eye,
She fell deeply in love with her father's 'prentice boy.

She was the fairest creature that eyes had ever seen,
And as for her age, it was scarcely fifteen;          [sigh
As she walk'd thro' the shady groves, she oft times did
While her heart gently beat for her pretty 'prentice boy.

O when e'er father came to understand,
Says he I'll banish him to some foreign land;
You never shall demean yourself, her father did reply,
To marry with young William, your pretty 'prentice boy.

He sent him on board of a ship of great fame,
She was bound to the Indies—the Caroline by name,
At parting she tore her hair, and bitterly did cry.
For ever I'll live a single life for my pretty 'prentice boy.

Then she dress'd like a sailor from the head to the foot
And engag'd with a captain all in the same fleet;
She engag'd with the captain, as his own cabin boy,
And sail'd on the ocean till the Indies drew nigh.

And as they were ploughing thro' the watery main
Her father, broken-hearted at home did remain;
Says he, twenty thousand I'd give in bright gold,
If my own dearest daughter I once more could behold.

And when she arriv'd on the Indian land,
She went to the captain, and told him out of hand;
She said, I am a pretty maid, I never can deny,
I have left my dear parents, for my dear 'prentice boy.

Then the captain together this couple did bring,
The music did play, and the sailors did sing;
On board the same vessel be put them out of hand,
And soon they returned to old England.

And when that they came to her own father's hall,
On their bended knees this young couple did fall;
She said, dearest father, stab me to the heart,
Before from young William you force me to part.

To see these true lovers, tears ran down his face,
He took them in his arms and did them embrace
Saying, to-morrow you shall be married by break of
And fifty bright thousands your portion shall be. [day,

So now this young couple are join'd heart in hand,
With fifty bright thousands all at their command :
So all you young men be constant and true,
Since no one can tell what true love can do.

[NLS note: a graphic appears here - see image of page]


                WORKHOUSE BOY.

The cloth was laid in the Vorkhouse hall,
The great-coats hung 'gainst the vhite-vashed vall,
The paupers all were blythe and gay,
Keeping their Christmas holiday.
When the master he cried with a roguish leer,
You'll all get fat on your Christmas cheer;
When, by his looks, one seemed to say,
I'll have some more soup on this Christmas day.
                          Oh! the poor Vorkhouse boy, &c.

At length all of us, to bed vere sent,
The boy was missing, in search ve vent:
Ve sought him above, ve sought him below,
Ye sought him that hour, ve sought him that night
Ve sought him in fear, and we sought him in fright,
When a young pauper cried, I know ve shall,
Get jolly vell vapt for loosing our pall.
                          Oh ! the poor Vorkhouse hoy, &c.

Ve sought him in each corner, each crevice ve knew,
Ve sought down the yard, & ve sought him up the flue
Ve sought him in each saucepan, each kettle and pot,
In the vater butt look'd but found him not.
And veeks roll'd on, ve vere all of us told,
That somebody said he'd been burk'd and sold,
When our master goes out the Parishioners vild,
Cries, there goes the cove that burk'd the poor child.
                          Oh! the poor Vorkhouse boy, &c.

At length the soup coppers, repairs did need,
The coppersmith came, and there he see'd
A dollop of bones lay grizzling there,
In the leg of the breeches the boy did wear.
To gain his fill, the boy did stoop,
And dreadful to tell he vos boil'd in the soup,
And ve all of us say it, and say it vith a sneer,
That he vos push'd in by an Overseer.
                          Oh! the poor Vorkhouse boy, &c.

                Walker, Printer, Durham.

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