Location: Liverpool, Lancashire, England (SJ3591)
Year: Publ. 1820 to 1824
Time of Occurrence: [Not given]
Collective Name: [Not given]


Young Roger of the Mill
Liverpool, W.Armstrong, [1820-1824]




[Verse 1]
Young Roger of the Mill,
one morning very soon,
Put on his best apparel,
new hose and clouten shoon,
And he a wooing went
to bonny buxom Nell,
Adzooks said he can thou fancy me,
for I like you wond'rous well, well,
For I like, &c.
[Verse 2]
It was early the next morning,
and on a holiday,
Young Roger dress'd his horses,
and he gave them corn & hay,
I am come to speak my mind,
what sayst thou bonny Nell,
Adzooks, said he can thou fancy me,
for I like thee wondrous well, well,
[Verse 3]
I thank you for your offer,
the damsel she replied,
But I am not in such a haste
to be a ploughman's bride,
For I do live in hopes
to marry a farmer's son,
If that be so, said Roger I'll go,
farewel, for I have done.
[Verse 4]
Your horses you have dress'd,
I think I've heard you say,
Made all in readiness,
and being come this way,
So sit and chat awhile -
no indeed not I,
For I cannot sit, nor munnot chat,
for I've other fish to fry.
[Verse 5]
Go take your farmer's son,
with all my honest heart,
For tho' my name be Hodge,
and I drive a plough and cart,
I need not tarry long,
before I get a wife,
There's buxom Joan, 'tis very well known,
she loves me as her life.
[Verse 6]
And O what is buxom Joan,
cannot I suit thee as well,
For she has ne'er a penny,
not so has bonny Nell,
I have got forty shillings,
the money made Hodge to smile,
He bow'd his head and he drew a chair,
and he vow'd he'd chat awhile.
[Verse 7]
So now my dearest Nell,
against next quarter's day,
If thou hast fifty shillings,
why need we longer stay,
For I have fifty more,
the money a cow will buy,
So we'll join our hands in wedlock's bands,
and there's none like you and I.


Peter Millington's Notes:

Date of publication ascribed by the Bodleian Broadside project to between 1820 and 1824.
Words from this song appear in the play from Swinderby, Lincolnshire, 1842 (C.R.Baskervill, 1924, pp.262-268). Baskervill prints this version in a footnote (p.266) with insignificant typographical variations.

Baskervill's Notes:

"For its relation to ll. 105-58 I print the whole of the slip-ballad 'Young Roger of the Mill' from W.H.Logan's Pedlar's Pack of Ballads and Songs (pp.343-44):
[Text is printed here.]
This text was printed by Armstrong of Liverpool. An early slip-ballad in the Roxburghe Collection in the British Museum, Vol.III, No.752, called 'Roger of the Vale,' I have not seen (see Roxb. Ball., VIII, 188). Fragmentary traditional versions are found in Kidson, Traditional Tunes, pp.66-68, opening, 'Young Roger of the valley,' and in the Journal of the Folk-Song Society, I, 250, opening 'Young Roger of the Mill.' Both are close akin to the version printed here. Kidson states that the title of an air in Wright's Second Book of the Flute Master Improved, ca.1715, is 'Roger of the Vale.' A version of the song occurs in Ramsay's Tea-Table Miscellany (II, 186-88), in The Vocal Miscellany, third ed., I (1738), 339-40, and in The Robin (1749), pp.414-15. The Following variants of Ramsay's text are nearer to than the slip-ballad to lines (109-10, 114-15) of the mummers' play:
Young Roger, you're mistaken, / The damsel then reply'd.
If it be so, says Hodge, I'll go; / Sweet mistress, I have done.
On the other hand important variants from Ramsay in the concluding stanza of the slip-ballad are repeated in the play. The Variations suggest that the early printed versions may have been derived from a traditional song."

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2000-07-11 - Encoded by Peter Millington
2021-01-15 - TEI-encoded by Peter Millington


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