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OLD MAID IN THE GARRET

Now I've often heard it said from me father and me mother
That the going tae a wedding is the making of another
Well, if this be true, I will go without a biddin
O kind providence, won't you send me tae a wedding

And its O dear me, how would it be,
if I die an old maid in a garret

Well, there's my sister Jean, she's not handsome or good looking
Scarcely sixteen and a fella she was courting
Now at twenty-four with a son and a daughter
Here am I at forty-five and I've never had an offer

I can cook and I can sew and I can keep the house right tidy
Rise up in the morning and get the breakfast ready
There's nothing in this whole world would make me half so cheery
As a wee fat man to call me his own deary

So come landsman or come pinsman, come tinker or come tailor
Come fiddler or come dancer, come ploughboy or come sailor
Come rich man, come poor man, come fool or come witty
Come any man at all that will marry me for pity

Well now I'm away home for nobody's heeding
Nobody's heeding and nobody's pleading
I'll go away to my own bitty garret
If I can't get a man, then I'll have to get a parrot


note:Buchan 101 SS (1962), 60, with music.
Chorus only in Montgomerie SC (1948), 120 (no. 197), from
Dundee. A nineteenth-century version of a 17th-century
ballad by Martin Parker of London, "The Wooing Maid".
Ritchie Singing Street (1964), 96, has versions of st.
4, 2, 3, with some differences; and a slightly recast
version from Glasgow, with tune, is in the British
magazine Spin II.6 (1963?), 13, roughly 1.1-2, 3.3-4;
st. 2, 4, 5. MS

adapted by Barbara Smith
recorded by Clancey Bros on Home Boys Home
@marriage
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