The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #1583   Message #3227308
Posted By: CapriUni
22-Sep-11 - 03:31 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: The Old Maid and the Burglar
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Old Maid and the Burglar
Hey, Steve, I just read your article -- very interesting.

One of the developing themes of my folklore blog is how disability in general, and missing "parts" in particular, is linked to the idea of monsters, and evil. And in that 1660 ballad you quote, I note that it's when the woman starts unlacing her prosthetic leg that the man notes that he's been deceived by the devil.

With "The Old Maid and the Burglar," is this an instance when the human is under the bed, and the monster is snuggled comfy between the sheets? ;-)

And as for the version "Side by Side," if I were to write a final verse in defense of the bride, I'd note that her arms and legs and hair may be on the chair, but her heart was in the bed.