Child's Ballads/277

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Child's Collected Ballads by Francis James Child
"The Wife Wrapt in Wether's Skin", no. 277


A[edit]

SHE wadna bake, she wadna brew,
Hollin, green hollin
For spoiling o her comely hue.
Bend your bow, Robin
She wadna wash, she wadna wring,
For spoiling o her gay goud ring.
Robin he's gane to the fald
And catched a weather by the spauld.
And he has killed his weather black
And laid the skin upon her back.
'I darena pay you, for your kin,
But I can pay my weather's skin.
'I darena pay my lady's back,
But I can pay my weather black.'
'O Robin, Robin, lat me be,
And I'll a good wife be to thee.
'It's I will wash, and I will wring,
And never mind my gay goud ring.
'It's I will bake, and I will brew,
And never mind my comely hue.
'And gin ye thinkna that eneugh,
I'se tak the goad and I'se ca the pleugh.
'Gin ye ca for mair whan that is doon,
I'll sit i the neuk and I'll dight your shoon.'

B[edit]

ROBIN he's gane to the wast,
Hollin, green hollin
He's waled a wife amang the warst.
Bend your bows, Robin
She could neither bake nor brew,
For spoilin o her bonnie hue.
She could nether spin nor caird,
But fill the cup, an sair the laird.
She could nether wash nor wring,
For spoilin o her gay goud ring.
Robin's sworn by the rude
That he wald mak an ill wife gude.
Robin he's gaun to the fauld,
An taen his blaik [wither] by the spauld.
He's taen aff his wither's skin
An he has preened his ain wife in.
'I daurna beat my wife, for a' her kin,
But I may beat my wither's skin.'
'I can baith bake an brew;
What care I for my bonnie hue?
'I can baith wash an wring;
What care I for my gay gowd ring?
'I can baith spin an caird;
Lat onybodie sair the laird.'
Robin's sworn by the rude
That he has made an ill wife gude.

C[edit]

THERE was a wee cooper who lived in Fife,
Nickity, nackity, noo, noo, noo
And he has gotten a gentle wife.
Hey Willie Wallacky, how John Dougall,
Alane, quo Rushety, roue, roue, roue
She wadna bake, nor she wadna brew,
For the spoiling o her comely hue.
She wadna card, nor she wadna spin,
For the shaming o her gentle kin.
She wadna wash, nor she wadna wring,
For the spoiling o her gouden ring.
The cooper's awa to his woo-pack
And has laid a sheep-skin on his wife's back.
'It's I'll no thrash ye, for your proud kin,
But I will thrash my ain sheep-skin.'
'Of, I will bake, and I will brew,
And never mair think on my comely hue.
'Oh, I will card, and I will spin,
And never mair think on my gentle kin.
'Oh, I will wash, and I will wring,
And never mair think on my gouden ring.'
A' ye wha hae gotten a gentle wife
Send ye for the wee cooper o Fife.

D[edit]

THERE livd a laird down into Fife,
Riftly, raftly, now, now, now
An he has married a bonny young wife.
Hey Jock Simpleton, Jenny['s] white petticoat,
Robin a Rashes, now, now, now
He courted her and he brought her hame,
An thought she would prove a thrifty dame.
She could nether spin nor caird,
But sit in her chair and dawt the laird.
She wadna bake and she wadna brew,
An a' was for spoiling her delicate hue.
She wadna wash nor wad she wring,
For spoiling o her gay goud ring.
But he has taen him to his sheep-fauld,
An taen the best weather by the spauld.
Aff o the weather he took the skin,
An rowt his bonny lady in.
'I dare na thump you, for your proud kin,
But well sall I lay to my ain weather's skin.'

  • * * * *

E[edit]

THERE lives a landart laird in Fife,
And he has married a dandily wife.
She wadna shape, nor yet wad she sew,
But sit wi her cummers and fill hersell fu.
She wadna spin, nor yet wad she card,
But she wad sit and crack wit the laird.
He is down to his sheep-fald
And cleekit a weather by the back-spald.
He's whirpled aff the gude weather's-skin
And wrappit the dandily lady therein.
'I darena pay you, for your gentle kin,
But weel I may skelp my weather's-skin.'

  • * * * *