Location: Hulme, Lancashire, England (SJ8397)
Year: Comm. 1842
Time of Occurrence: Easter
Collective Name: Pace Eggers


Jesse Lee
Pace, Peace, or Paste Egging
Manchester Local Studies Library, Call No. MSC 920/L, 4th Apr.1842



{The first Character is called "Open the Door", who begins after knocking}

Open the Door

"Open the Door, & let me in
A merry Act I will begin,
I'll act it young, I'll act it sage,
I'll act it on a Public Stage! {on entering he says}
Room, Room, brave gallant boys, come give us room to rhyme,
We come to show our great activity this Easter time:
Active young, & active age,
The like was never acted on a stage,
And if you don't believe a word of what I say,
Step in St. George, and clear the way! -


Here come I Knight George, from England I spring,
One of those noble deeds of Valour to begin
I am a noble champion bold,
And with my right hand, sword, Shield & Spear
Have won many a Crown in Gold.
Seven long years in a close confinement I have been kept,
And out of that, into a Prison leap't
And out of that, into a Rock of Stone
Where there I made my sad & grievous a moan.
Was it not I who fought the Fiery Dragon
And brought him down to slaughter,
And by these Holy means, won fair Elizabeth
The Queen of Egypt's daughter;
And after I won her I did not stand at fear,
But through her tender heart, I run my naked spear.
Many a giant I did subdue,
After I run the Dragon through and through;
I free'd fair Sabra from the Snake.
And what could mortal man more undertake?
I fought them all courageously,
And still have gain'd the victory,
And always fight for Liberty!
Shew me the man that dare before me stand,
I'll cut him down with glittering sword in hand!

{Enter Slasher.}


Here's the man that dare before thee stand!
I heard thee say, thou'd cut him down with sword in hand.
I am he that will take thy challenge,
Whose courage is so great,
And with my sword I always make
Both Earls and Dukes to quake.

St. G.

Thou art a bold fellow! Who art thou?


I am a Soldier stout & brave,
Bold Slasher is my name,
With Sword & Buckler by my side,
I hope to win this game.
I'll make the Globe to ring, Brave Boys,
And that I will make good,
And that before this ground I quit
I'll spill St. George's blood!

St. Geo.

What's that thou sayest, do thou not be so hot,
For in this spot, thou know'st not whom thou's got;
I will hash thee and smash thee as small as flies,
And send the to the D...l to make mince pies -
Mince pies hot, mince pies cold
I'll send thee to make, e'er thour't three days old!


O George! O George! how can thou say so,
When my head is made of Iron, my body girt & steel'd
My legs and arms bold beef and brass,
I'll be bound no man can make me yield!

St. Geo.

Let thy head be made of Iron,
Thy body girt and steel'd
Thy legs and arms both beef and brass,
I'll be bound I'll make thee yield!
With all thy boasts, thou cannot thyself save,
For Satisfaction I will have!


What I have said I mean; - thou cannot me dismay
So pull thy sword out then, and fight thy way!

{They fight, Slasher falls}

Open the Door

Oh! Oh George! what has thou done,
Thou'st kill'd and slain my only son,
My only son, my only heir,
Cans't thou not see him bleed before thee there?

St. Geo.

I've sarved him right
He drew out his sword, & challenge'd me to fight!

Mr. Op. the D.

A Doctor! A Doctor! ten pounds for a Doctor!
Is there no Doctor to be found,
To cure this man of his deep & mortal wound; -
O horrible! horrible deed, whatever hast thou done,
To drive me out of my seven senses into seventeen,
And out of seventeen into seven score,
The like was never seen or heard before!

St. Geo.

Here comes the Doctor.


Here comes I, who never came yet,
With my big head, and little wit,
Although my wit be ever so small,
I've got enough to please you all. {Bows}
I am a Doctor pure and good
And with my skill I can staunch his blood;
If you have a mind this man's life to save,
Full Fifty Gold Guineas, I must have.

St. Geo.

How camest thou to be a Doctor?


By my travels.

St. Geo.

How far has't thou travelled?


I have travelled

St. Geo.



I have travelled far.

St. Geo.

Where has't thou travelled?
cans't thou not say where thou has travelled.


I've travelled through Hickety, Pickety, [Footnote 2]
High Garman, France and Spain,
From the Bedside to the Cupboard side,
And from the Cupboard side, to the bedside back again.

St. Geo.

What has thou seen in thy travels?


One day as I went down a narrow lane
I peep'd down a Sough,
Where I saw Monkeys learing to chew 'Bacca,
And taking {he sneezes} Snuff; {Footnote 1}
Down another lane I saw two dead men fighting,
Two blind men seeing fair play,
And hear'd two Deaf and Dumb men
Shouting, Hurra! Hurra!
I saw an old woman selling Soup in a cart,
I said, let me have a bowl, & she cut me a quart.
In a field, I saw Two stark nak'd men running a race
For a Smocket,
They met a hare, one nip'd it up
And put it in his pocket.

{Then follows something about Turnips as big as his head; and a house, where there were standing sentry a Bug and a house flee}

St. Geo.

But Doctor, what can's thou cure?


I can cure the plague within, the Plague without;
The Itch, - Pox - the Palsy, and the Gout; -
Moreover, If you bring me an Old woman of fourscore & ten,
With the knuckle bone of her little big toe broken
I can set it right again.

St. Geo.

But can thou bring this dead man to life again?


That I can without giving him pain.
For I have a bottle in my pocket {pulls it out}
Will cure him quick as in Sky-rocket {pouring some into the mouth of Slasher}
Here take a sup of my Nip Nap,
And slip it down thy Tip Tap,
And now I say, Rise up bold Slasher & fight thy way.

Slasher {rising}

I say Doctor, what makes your nose so red & long.


'Tis good Ale & Beer that makes it red & long
And if you can't believe what I say,
Step Prince of Paradise & clear the way.

{Enter P.}

[Prince of Paradise]

Here come I the Prince of Paradise
That Black Morrocco King,
With Crown and Glory on my head
I'll make this Globe to ring,
I'll make the Globe to ring, Brave Boys,
Remember what I say,
And if you don't believe it
Come in brave Turk and clear the way.

{Enter Turk}

[Turkish Champion]

I am a Turkish Champion bold
From Turkey land I came,
I come to fight a famous Knight,
St. George it is his name.

{Sometimes both the Prince & Turk fight with St. George, who both fall. There is also another Character introduced called "Dirty Bet". Within the last 20 years the following has sometimes been added.}

{Enter St. Patrick}

[St. Patrick]

Here come I, St. Patrick, in shining armour bright,
A famous champion & a worthy Knight.
What was St. George? But St. Patrick's boy!
He fed his horses seven long years on oats & hay,
And after that, - he ran away.

Mr Open the Door

I say, by George you lie Sir,
Pull out your sword & try Sir,
Pull out your Purse and Pay Sir,
I'll run my sword through your body
And make you run away Sir.
And if you don't believe what I say
Come in Old Noll and clear the way.

{Enter O.C.}

[Oliver Cromwell]

Here come I Oliver Cromwell as you may suppose,
I have conquered many nations, with my Copper Nose;
I made my foes to tremble and my enemies to quake,
And beat all my opposers, till I made their hearts to ache,
And if you don't believe the words I have to say
Enter in Old Beelzebub and clear for me the way.

{B. enters singing to the tune of "Nancy Dawson"}

[Old Beelzebub]

"Here I come Old Beelzebub;
Here I come Old Beelzebub;
Here I come Old Beelzebub;
And over my shoulder I carry my club;
And in my hand a dripping pan
In my hand a dripping pan,
In my hand a dripping pan,
And I think myself a jolly young man."
And if you don't believe what I say
Come in Mr. Devil Doubt & clear the way.


Here come I little Devil Doubt
If you don't give me money, I'll sweep you all out
Money I want, and money I crave
If you don't give me Money, I'll sweep you all to the grave."

{All the characters individually advance and each sing a verse}

Dirty Bet

The last that does come in
It is old Dirty Bet,
And if you will believe me
Her pettycoats are wet:
Fol lol lol di riddle dee."

St. Geo.

The next that does come in
It is a valiant knight
And if you will believe me
He'll set you all to right.
Fol lol &c


The next that does come in
It is old Doctor Fat
And if you will believe
He wears a Pinch'd, cock'd Hat.
Fol lol &c

{All singing some such little doggerel lines; and concludes with a general Chorus as a 'Finale' of which the following is all I can collect}


"Now Easter is coming and all's very fine,
We're three or four Jolly lads all in a line,
With walking and talking we are all very dry,
We hope our kind neighbours will never deny,
Fol de riddle oll
Fol de role
Fol de riddle oll doll dee.
If you'll give us some Pace-eggs right jovial & free,
We'll treat all our lasses on Easter Monday;
If you give nought, we'll take nought, you'll find us all right,
And we'll drink your good health, & bid you good night.
Fol de riddle etc



Footnote 1: These lines are as written in the mss. With 'he' placed over sneezes
Footnote 2: "PS. I was thinking of 'Hickety Pickety' of the Pace Eggers and query if originally it was not 'Italy, Picardy, High Germany, etc'"

Indexers' Notes:

This text a taken from a manuscript letter from Jesse Lee to the Rev. John B. Beard, dated 4 April 1842. Footnote 2 comes from a second letter, dated 11 April 1842. Jesse Lee was an artist who lived from 1791 - 1844. At the time of writing, his address was 37 Lloyd St., Hulme, Manchester. The version quoted in the text could then date from anytime from say, 1800-1842.
Lee's original manuscript of the text, written in ink, includes many changes by him, also written in ink. Additionally, another hand has added further changes in pencil. This transcript in based on the original version.
This text is also in the Helm Collection, Ref. 31:169-176

Lee's preamble:

"It was usual in the latter part of Lent, for parties of Lads to go about in the evenings acting a sort of Ludicrous Drama such as may be designated "Mummings", with wooden Swords, Paste-board Caps & Shields. bedecked with Ribbons & Tinsel. There are many Versions of the Dialogue, which is strangely jumbled. The following is the best that I remember, - like many other sports, it is falling off, particularly in the large towns."

File History:

2000-10-15 - Typed by Eddie Cass
2000-10-26 - Encoded & proof read by P.Millington
2021-01-15 - TEI-encoded by Peter Millington


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