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Marrow Bones: English Folk Songs from the Hammond and Gardiner Manuscripts


The Farmer's Toast: supplementary material

The Farmer

Here's to each jolly fellow
That loves to be mellow,
Attend unto me and sit easy;
For a bottle in quiet,
My boys, let us try it,
For dull thinking will make a man crazy.
Whilst here I am king,
Let us laugh, dance and sing;
Let no mortal appear as a stranger;
But show me the ass
That refuses his glass,
And I'll order him grass in a manger.
Lal de lal, &c.

By reaping and mowing,
By ploughing and sowing,
Dull nature supplies me with plenty;
I've a plentiful board,
And a cellar well stored,
And my garden supplies me with dainties,
I have land, I have bowers,
I have fruits, I have flowers,
And I'm here as Justice of Quorum;
In my cabin's far end
I've a bed for a friend,
With a clean fire-side and a jorum.
Lal de lal, &c.

Was it not for my seeding
You would have poor feeding,
For indeed you would soon starve without me
My mind is content
When I pay my own rent,
And I'm happy when friends are about me.
Draw near to my table,
Ye boys that are able,
Let us hear no more words of complaining,
For the ringing of glasses
All music surpasses, —
I long to see bottles a draining.
Lal de lal, &c.

Let the mighty and great
Roll in splendour and state,
For I envy no mortal, I swear it;
For I eat my own ham,
My own chicken and lamb,
And I shear my own sheep and I wear it:
I have all things in season,
Such as woodcock and pheasant,
And the lark is my morning alarmer,
So may each good fellow
That loves to be mellow
Drink the plough and the good honest farmer.
Lal de lal, &c.

From The Universal Songster, London: Jones & Co [1826] II, 218.