Location: Abbotsford, Roxburghshire, Scotland (NT5034)
Year: Col. 1812 to 1832
Time of Occurrence: Hogmany, New Year
Collective Name: Guisards


National Library of Scotland: Abbotsford Collection, MS 893 (Ballads and Songs), ff. 85-90.




Silence silence gentlemen
Upon me cast an eye
My name is Alexander
I'll sing a tragedy.
My own actors they are but young
And they never fought before
But they will do the best they can
What can the best do more
The first that I call in
He is a Farmers son.
And he is like to lose his love
Because he is but young.


Altho I am but young
I've got money for to rove
And I will freely spend it all
Before I lose my love.


The next that I call in
Is galoshin of renown
With sword and pistol by his side
He hopes to gain the crown.


Here comes galoshin
Galoshin is my name
With sword and pistol by my side
I hope to win the game.
Will you take my love from me
Yes and I'll have her too.



Now Galoshin you have killed
And on the ground is laid
Young man you'll suffer for it
I'm very sore afraid.


Oh you villain bold
Don't lay the blame on me
I'm sure that both my eyes were shut
When this young man did die.


Oh how could your two eyes be shut
When I stood looking on
I saw you slip behind his back
And draw your sword so fine


If galoshin I have killed
Then Galoshin I will cure
Galoshin shall be cured
In the space of half an hour.


Are there dcotors to be found here,
I say are there any doctors?

{Enter Doctor}


Yes, here come I, as good a doctor as ever Scotland bred.


What can you cure?


The clap and the gangrene
and an old man in his grave seven years and twenty more.


What will you take to cure this dead man?


Ten pounds


Will nine not do?


Yes, perhaps nine and a bottle of wine.
I will have a bottle of Hoxy-Croxy at the head of my breeches.
Put a little in his nose
and a little in his bum.
Rise up jack and fight.


Now once I was dead
But now I am alive
And blessed are the hands of those
That made me to revive.

2. and 3.

Now we will shake hands
And we will fight no more
And we will gree like brothers
As once we did before.
Bless the master we all sing together
And the mistress also
and the pretty babies
That round the table go.
Bless the men and maidens
That ever were here
I wish you all a good Xmas
Likewise a good new year.
There are four of us all
And merry boys are we
And we are gone a rambling
Your houses for to see.
Your house for to see
And pleasure for to have
And what you freely give to us
We freely will receive.


Peter Millington's Notes:

This text was scanned from the transcript designated Abbotsford Collection(b) in:
B.Hayward (1992) Galoshins : The Scottish Folk Play. Edinburgh, Edinburgh University Press, 1992, ISBN 07486 0338 7, pp.97-99.

Hayward's Notes:

"These two texts were found among Scott's paper, with no indication of their provenance. The ABBOTSFORD(b) information shows that one of Scott's visitors had left a copy of one of the performances in Scott's keeping. It is possible that this refers to the ABBOTSFORD COLLECTION(b) text, which resembles the description given in ABBOTSFORD(a)." p.99

Further Indexer's Notes:

Walter Scott purchased his estate at Abbotsford in 1812, and died in 1832. Whilst, as Hayward states, the provenance of these two texts is not given, they are both to a lesser or greater extent consistent with two descriptions relating to the Abbotsford custom, quoted by Hayward. These are a journal entry dated 1825 from Basil Hall (B.Hayward, 1992, p92) and a letter from Walter Scott to Thomas Sharp dated 1826 (B.Hayward, 1992, pp.92-93). As both descriptions mention performances by numerous sides of actors, it is possible that both texts could have come from Abbotsford.

File History:

2000-10-09 - Encoded by P.Millington
2021-01-15 - TEI-encoded by Peter Millington


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