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Children's Rhymes. Children's Games, Children's Songs, Children's Stories
Children's Songs and Ballads - A Frog be would a-wooing go


A Frog he would a-wooing go,
Heigho, says Roly!
Whether his mother would let him or no,
With a roly-poly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

So off he set in his coat and hat,
Heigho, says Roly
And on the way he met a Rat,
With a rolly polly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

"Please.Mr Rat, will you go with me?"
Heigho, says Roly
"Good Mrs. Mousie for to see?"
With a roly-polly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

When they came to the door of Mousie's hole,
Heigho, says Roly
They gave a loud knock, and they gave a loud call,
With a roly-poly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

"Please, Mrs. Mouse, are you within?"
Heigho, says Roly!
"Oh yes, dear sirs, I am sitting to spin,"
With a role-poly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

"Please, Mrs. Mouse, will you give us some beer?"
Heigho, says Rolyl
"For Froggv and I are fond of good cheer",
With a role-poly, gammon and spinach.
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

"Please, Mr. Frog, will you give us a song?
Heigho, says Holy!
"But let it be something that's not very long,"
With a roly-poly, gammon and spinach.
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

But while they were making a terrible din,
Heigho, says RoIy
The cat and her kittens came tumbling in,
With a roly-poly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony RoIy!

The cat she seized Mr. Rat by the crown,
Heigho, says Roly
The kittens they pulled Mrs. Mousie down,
With a role--poly, gammon and spinach.
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

This put Mr. Frog in a terrible fright,
Heigho, says Roly
He took up his hat and he wished them good-night,
With a roll-poly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho. says Anthony Roly!

But as Froggy was crossing over a brook,
Heigho, says Holy
A lily-white duck came and swallowed him up,
With a roly-poly, gammon and spinach,
Heigho, says Anthony Roly!

There are various versions of the above narrative of a sadly disastrous expedition, in English and in Scotch :alike. The Ballad book, a curious collection, of which thirty copies only were printed, in 1824 embraces one beginning:—

There lived a Puddv in a well,
Cuddy alone, Cuddy alone;
There lived a Puddv in a well,
Cuddy alone and I.

There lived a Puddy in a well,
And a Mousie in a mill;
Kickmaleerie, cowden down,
Cuddy alone and I.

Puddy he'd a-wooin' ride,
Cuddv alone, Cuddy alone
Sword and pistol by his side.
Cuddy alone and I.
Puddy came to the Mousie's home
"Mistress Mouse, are you within?"
Kickmaleerie, cowden down,
Cuddy alone and I.

And which roes forward narrating the almost identically same story: which story, homely and simple as it appears, is of surprising antiquity. In 1580, the Stationers' Company licensed ''a ballad of a most strange wedding of the frogge and the mouse;" and that same ballad Dr. Robert Chambers printed from a small quarto manuscript of poems formerly in the possession of Sir Walter Scott, dated 1630. This very old version begins:—

Itt was ye frog in ye wall,
Humble doune, humble doune;
And ye mirrie mouse in ye mill,
Tweidle, tweidle, twino.

And the closing lines tell that

Quhen ye supper they war at,
The frog, mouse, and evin ye ratt.

There corn in Gib our cat,
And chaught ye mouse evin by ye back.

Then did they all seperat,
And ye frog lap on ye floor so flat.

Then in com Dick our drack,
And drew ye frog evin to ye lack.

Ye rat ran up ye wall,
A goodlie companie, ye devall goe with all.


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