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seven drunken nights

DigiTrad:
FIVE NIGHTS DRUNK (OUR GOODMAN)
SHICKERED AS HE COULD BE
THE TRAVELER(Our Goodman)


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: 7 Drunken Night 1864 (2)
'Cabbage Head' - wanted (App Bluegrass) (15)
You blind fool you drunken fool/4 Nights Drunk (50)
Chord Req: Seven Drunken Nights (31)
Lyr Add: Yet another OUR GOODMAN (#274) (8)
Lyr Req: Seven Drunken Nights (by The Dubliners) (24)
Lyr Req: Pretty Far Out (The Limeliters) (4)
Lyr Req: Four Nights Drunk (Steeleye Span) (10)
Lyr Req: Oor Gudeman (Alastair McDonald) (3)
Lyr Add: Seven Drunken Nights (23)
Lyr Req: Seven Drunken Nights (23)
seven drunken nights+whiskey in the jar (12) (closed)
Lyr Req: Seven Drunken Nights - Irish (10)
Lyr Req: Seven Drunken Nights (12)
help w/ Irish or Scottish song (7 nights drunk) (28)


mryan 02 Nov 98 - 05:53 AM
AndreasW 02 Nov 98 - 07:46 AM
Big Mick 02 Nov 98 - 08:41 AM
02 Nov 98 - 11:42 AM
Joe Offer 02 Nov 98 - 01:23 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 02 Nov 98 - 06:39 PM
Liam's Brother 02 Nov 98 - 09:52 PM
Rob O 03 Nov 98 - 02:20 PM
Liam's Brother 03 Nov 98 - 07:07 PM
Jo Taylor 03 Nov 98 - 07:37 PM
Joe Offer 03 Nov 98 - 11:33 PM
Jo Taylor 04 Nov 98 - 06:14 PM
Connor 12 Nov 98 - 11:01 AM
Doctor John 13 Nov 98 - 04:41 PM
Bruce O. 13 Nov 98 - 06:53 PM
skw@ 19 Nov 98 - 04:01 AM
rechal 19 Nov 98 - 01:57 PM
SteveF 19 Nov 98 - 02:32 PM
Richard McD. Bridge 20 Nov 98 - 04:01 PM
Greg Baker 20 Nov 98 - 04:29 PM
rechal 23 Nov 98 - 01:46 PM
Bruce O. 23 Nov 98 - 03:06 PM
Roger in Baltimore 24 Nov 98 - 06:41 PM
Craig 24 Nov 98 - 09:31 PM
Jerry 25 Nov 98 - 12:46 PM
manylodges (inactive) 18 May 99 - 10:50 PM
Arkie 19 May 99 - 12:56 AM
Graham Pirt 19 May 99 - 07:55 PM
Molly Malone 31 Jan 00 - 02:36 PM
Molly Malone 31 Jan 00 - 02:41 PM
GUEST,PJ Curtis. 31 Jan 00 - 03:04 PM
Gary T 31 Jan 00 - 03:26 PM
Molly Malone 31 Jan 00 - 03:40 PM
paddymac 31 Jan 00 - 06:31 PM
Uncle_DaveO 31 Jan 00 - 08:13 PM
Joe Offer 24 Feb 00 - 02:55 AM
KingBrilliant 24 Feb 00 - 06:30 AM
GUEST,Sian in Wales 24 Feb 00 - 06:41 AM
GUEST,Sohir 20 Apr 00 - 11:00 AM
KathWestra 20 Apr 00 - 11:55 AM
Art Thieme 20 Apr 00 - 12:10 PM
Malcolm Douglas 20 Apr 00 - 01:40 PM
Irish Rover 20 Apr 00 - 05:15 PM
Billy the Bus 20 Apr 00 - 07:08 PM
Abby Sale 20 Apr 00 - 08:46 PM
Lighter 12 Jun 14 - 09:45 AM
Jack Campin 12 Jun 14 - 09:56 AM
Lighter 12 Jun 14 - 10:33 AM
GUEST,michaelr 12 Jun 14 - 07:10 PM
GUEST,Gerry 12 Jun 14 - 08:52 PM
Bat Goddess 13 Jun 14 - 01:01 PM
GUEST 13 Jun 14 - 02:16 PM
Lighter 19 Jun 14 - 07:15 PM
Jim McLean 20 Jun 14 - 05:01 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 20 Jun 14 - 05:09 AM
MartinRyan 20 Jun 14 - 05:18 AM
Jim McLean 20 Jun 14 - 04:16 PM
Lighter 20 Jun 14 - 06:10 PM
MartinRyan 21 Jun 14 - 03:34 AM
MartinRyan 21 Jun 14 - 03:42 AM
Lighter 21 Jun 14 - 07:45 AM
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Subject: seven drunken nights
From: mryan
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 05:53 AM

I have been looking for the artist and an album on which to find the song, "Seven Drunken Nights". It's a song that is typically played in Irish pubs. The lyrics go something like, "...as I came home on Monday night as drunk as drunk could be. I saw a horse outside the door where my old horse should be..." and proceeds through a week of similar situations and responses.

If you know of a good album on which to find this song, please let me know.

Thanks.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: AndreasW
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 07:46 AM

What about The Dubliners?
Seven drunken nights is for example on their album
20 Greatest Hits
or on the album
Live in Carre, Amsterdam
I also got it on an album without an explicit title, the label is Compacts for Pleasure
cu, Andreas


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Big Mick
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 08:41 AM

There was a thread on this recently and it comes up every so often. I was going to look it up for you buut this is a good chance to learn about the search tools. First you can go to the top of this thread and search the DT database. Put in a key word (drunken, maybe?). You will get a number of songs. BTW, one of those will be about 5 drunken nights, same song w/ a few less verses.

You can also search the threads by going to the homepage and doing a key word search in the discussion forums. Look at the top of the page and you will see what I am talking about. If you search there, you will find what you are looking for.

If you have no luck, re-post here and one of us will assist you.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From:
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 11:42 AM

This has also been recorded by Martin Carthy. I am not sure if it is on a solo album or on of the Steele Span Albums on which he appears.

aldus


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 01:23 PM

If you search the database under #274 (it's Child Ballad #274), you'll find three versions. I guess the best way to find it in the forum would be to put drunk, drunken, or goodman in the subject line - putting it in the message body area would bring up far too much material, since we talk about our besotten brethren quite often here. I'll betcha there are half a dozen versions of the song posted in the forum, including the salacious details of the sixth and seventh nights....
Now, the recording of the song I like best is called "You Old Fool" by the Weavers - Ronnie Gilbert and Lee Hays sing it, and I can see the twinkle in Lee's eye as I listen to the recording. It's on their Vanguard box set, and I'm sure it's on a number of other Weavers recordings. Sorry kids, I think the Weavers song covers only the first five nights.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 06:39 PM

Steeleye Span's version is on Seven Man Mop. They don't sing all the nights.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 02 Nov 98 - 09:52 PM

mryan, it's the Dubliners you want!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Rob O
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 02:20 PM

On the Dubliner's CD, at least the one I have, only has 5 verses, though its billed as "Seven Drunken Nights". In fact its a live recording that they start off with "Now're we're going to do a little song that seven verses to it, but we only have to sing 5 of them."

Rob O


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 07:07 PM

Not surprised the Dubs were 2 nights short because the 5 they got through were probably pretty long. Seriously, the Irish bar version mryan asked for above undoubtedly derives from the Dubliners.

All the best.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Jo Taylor
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 07:37 PM

Well I have a French friend (I am English living in France) who doesn't seem to see the necessity of separating the verses and sings the wrong responses to each verse. ."Who is that flowerpot where my old head should be..." ....really creases us up, it's so bizarre! Who are you Joe Offer? Where?


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Joe Offer
Date: 03 Nov 98 - 11:33 PM

Well, I got my education in a Catholic seminary, Jo, so I really don't understand the goings-on of the sixth and seventh nights. Five verses is just fine for me. As for who I really am, I cannot reveal that, lest I bring shame upon my poor, long-suffering parents.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Jo Taylor
Date: 04 Nov 98 - 06:14 PM

Ah but I just read your bit on the 'who are we' thread last night. Owing to the time of night & consumption of wine I couldn't remember who I was.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Connor
Date: 12 Nov 98 - 11:01 AM

I ken of at least three different verses fur tha Sunday. Guess there's alot gaeing on at that time!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Doctor John
Date: 13 Nov 98 - 04:41 PM

Peter Seeger has a version on one of the American Favourite Ballads LP's. Cuts off just as it gets interesting though!


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Subject: Lyr/Tune Add: OUR GOODMAN CAME HAME AT E'EN
From: Bruce O.
Date: 13 Nov 98 - 06:53 PM

In David Herd's Scots Songs, 1776 (also in Herd's MSS, and as Child ballad #274). No earlier copy has yet been discovered, in spite of considerable effort to do so. Herd gave no music nor did he indicate a tune. David Clarke, musical editor of SMM, and Johnson the engraver and publisher didn't know the tune, but heard of a man in Edinburgh, a Mr. Geikie, who sang the song. They visited Mr. Geikie, and recovered the tune, and gave it as SMM #454 (1797). They also got some corrections to Herd's text, and for that reason I give here the SMM text.

1. Our goodman came hame at e'en,
  And hame came he;
And then he saw a saddle-horse,
  Where nae horse should be.
O how came this horse here?
  How can this be?
How came this horse here,
  Without the leave o' me?
      A horse! quo' she:
      Ay, a horse, quo' he.
Ye auld blind dotard carle,
  Blind mat ye be,
'Tis naething but a bonny milk cow,
  My minny sent to me.
      A milk cow! quo' he:
      Ay, a milk cow, quo' she.
Far hae I ridden,
  And meikle hae I seen,
But a saddle on a cows back
  Saw I never nane.

2. Our goodman came hame at e'en,
  And hame came he;
He spy'd a pair of jackboots,
  Where nae boots should be.
What's this now goodwife?
  What's this I see?
How came these boots there
  Without the leave o' me?
      Boots! quo' she:
      Ay, boots, quo' he.
Shame fa' your cuckold face,
  And ill mat ye see,
It's but a pair of water stoups
  The cooper sent to me.
      Water stoups! quo' he:
      Ay, water stoups, quo' she.
Far hae I ridden,
  And farer hae I gane,
But siller spurs on water stoups
  Saw I never nane.

3. Our goodman came hame at e'en,
  And hame came he;
And then he saw a [siller] sword,
  Where a sword should nae be.
What's this now goodwife?
  What's this I see?
O how came this sword here,
  Without the leave o' me?
      A sword! quo' she:
      Ay, a sword, quo' he.
Shame fa' your cuckold face,
  And ill mat you see,
It's but a parridge spurtle
  My minnie sent to me.
      [A parridge spurtle! quo' he:
      Ay, a parridge spurtle, quo' she.]
Weil, far hae I ridden,
  And muckle hae I seen;
But siller handed [parridge] spurtles
  Saw I never nane.

4. Our goodman came hame at e'en,
  And hame came he;
There he spy'd a powder'd wig,
  Where nae wig should be.
What's this now goodwife?
  What's this I see?
How came this wig here
  Without the leave o' me?
      A wig! quo' she:
      Ay, a wig, quo' he.
Shame fa' your cuckold face,
  And ill mat you see,
'Tis naething but a clocken hen
  My minnie sent to me.
      [A] clocken hen! quo' he:
      Ay, a clocken hen, quo' she.
Far hae I ridden,
  And muckle hae I seen,
But powder on a clocken-hen,
  Saw I never nane.

5. Our goodman came hame at e'en,
  And hame came he;
And there he saw a muckle coat,
  Where nae coat shou'd be.
O how came this coat here?
  How can this be?
How came this coat here
  Without the leave o' me?
      A coat! quo' she:
      Ay, a coat, quo' he.
Ye auld blind dotard carl,
  Blind mat ye be,
It's but a pair of blankets
  My minnie sent to me.
      Blankets! quo' he:
      Ay, blankets, quo' she.
Far hae I ridden,
  And muckle hae I seen,
But buttons upon blankets
  Saw I never nane.

6. Ben went our goodman,
  And ben went he;
And there he spy'd a sturdy man,
  Where nae man should be.
How came this man here?
  How can this be?
How came this man here
  Without the leave o' me?
      A man! quo' she:
      Ay, a man, quo' he.
Poor blind body,
  And blinder mat ye be,
It's a new milking maid,
  My mither sent to me.
      A maid! quo' he:
      Ay, a maid, quo' she.
Far hae I ridden,
  And muckle hae I seen,
But lang-bearded maidens
  Saw I never nane.

X:1
T:Our Goodman came hame at e'en. &c
S:Scots Musical Museum, #454
Q:160
L:1/8
M:2/4
K:A
"Recit."E A A A|A A .A c|"in time"B2c3/2A/2|F3 "Recit."E|\
E A A A|A A Az/2"in time"c/2|B3/2A/2 B3/2 c/2|.A2c3/2d/2|\
e2c f|{f/2}e2 c3/2 A/2|B3/2A/2 B3/2 c/2|.F3 "Recit."E|\
E/2A3/2 A A|A2 A3/2 "in time"c/2|B3/2 A/2 B3/2 c/2|.A3 "Recit."A|\
A3z/2 A/2|.e3 E/2 E/2|E3z/2 E/2|.A2 "in time"c3/2d/2|\
e2 c/2f3/2|e e c A|B3/2 A/2 c3/2 A/2|{G/2}F3 "Recit."E|\
E A A A|A2 A "in time"c|B/2 A3/2 B3/2 c/2|.A3 "Recit."A|\
E2 E3/2 E/2|.A2 zA/2 A/2|A2 A3/2 A/2|.e2 "in time"(c3/2d/2)|\
e2c3/2 f/2|e2c3/2 A/2|B3/2 A/2 B3/2 c/2|.F3 "Recit."E/2 E/2|\
E A A A|A2 A3/2 "in time"c/2|B3/2 A/2 B3/2 c/2|A4|]


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: skw@
Date: 19 Nov 98 - 04:01 AM

From Des Geraghty's memoir of Luke Kelly (1994):
The song which made The Dubliners famous was Seven Drunken Nights, an English version of a light-hearted Irish song that the group had picked up from Seosamh O hEanai long before in O'Donoghue's pub. It was released as a single on St Patrick's Day 1967 and promptly banned on RTE as offensive to public decency. Sometime later Seosamh himself gave a straight-faced interview to an evening paper stating that the song was about an Irishman who'd worked away from home for twenty years - a commonplace situation for men from rural Ireland in those years - and returned to find he had a full-grown son. And who are we to differ? In fact, the tongue-in-cheek way in which the song is composed [...] is typical of a sly ambiguity in many Irish songs about sex.
Intrigue was added to the incident by the fact that the song actually mentions only five nights, and some play was made afterwards of speculation that the 'missing' verses might have been too shocking for even The Dubliners. What was true was that the song had been recorded by Seosamh himself in Irish years before and played on RTE without a murmur of protest; while the Irish establishment were conservative and puritanical in English, they were quite often indifferent to how irreverent and unorthodox our culture was in Irish.
But [...] Radio Caroline gave Seven Drunken Nights saturation airtime. The hypocrisy and the foolishness of RTE's decision was too much for a generation already chafing under censorship and prudery, and within two days the record had sold 40,000 copies. It didn't take long to reach the music industry's Silver Disc status, the award for sales in excess of 250,000. The letters pages of the papers were inundated with letters of indignant protest at censorship; the British papers picked up on Ireland's banned song, and not long afterwards, Seven Drunken Nights reached Number Five in the British pop charts.

Roy Palmer gives a couple of soldiers' last verses in his book on soldiers' songs 'Oh What A Lovely War' (1990). I'm not going to quote them, but they could be described as fairly graphic... - Susanne


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: rechal
Date: 19 Nov 98 - 01:57 PM

This song is also known as "Cabbagehead," at least in the Appalachians. I've also seen it in songbooks as "four nights drunk."


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: SteveF
Date: 19 Nov 98 - 02:32 PM

The song is sung by Oscar Brand on "Bawdy songs and Backroom Ballads."


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Richard McD. Bridge
Date: 20 Nov 98 - 04:01 PM

There is an unusual last verse that I can only half remember (in addition to the usual ones)

As I came home on Sunday night
A little before my time
I crept into our cellar
My old twelve bore to find
(Now the bit I forget, then)
I never saw two buggers run
So bloody fast before

I have also heard a blues version - might have been Muddy Waters. Fragment as

Wake up//Woman//Explain all these things to me
Whose face is/
On the pillow/
Where my face/supposed to be

Oh darlin' /
You talk right silly
Why don't you open up your eyes and see
It's nothin'/but a ??
My mother (etc.) sent to me

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 9-Jul-02.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Greg Baker
Date: 20 Nov 98 - 04:29 PM

When the Maryland band Clam Chowder did it, they had a verse which had a hat where my hat ought to be...

It is just a chamber pot/My mother gave to me... Well, I've been around this whole wide world A dozen times or more, But a J.B. Stetson chamber pot I've never seen before!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: rechal
Date: 23 Nov 98 - 01:46 PM

I heard it as "...but a chamber pot marked size seven-and-three-quarters I've never seen before."


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Bruce O.
Date: 23 Nov 98 - 03:06 PM

It has been said that this Child ballad is second only in popularity to "Barbara Allen", and I have no doubt new verses will continue to appear as long as the institution of marriage lasts.

An 18th century broadside version in the Roxburghe and Douce collections has not been reprinted exactly, but with some minor expurgation it is in Dixon's 'Ancient Poems, Ballads and Songs', 1846, and Bell's expanded edition, 1857. The latter is on the web, but with an ungodly long URL, so, if you want to see it, go the 'Sixteenth Century Ballads' site in Mudcat's Links and near the bottom of the page click on Bell's book (where it says 'large ftp file') and use the find command of your browser on 'Wichet' (Old Wichet and His Wife) [The headnote there, that the song is in Herd's 1769 collection, is wrong. It's only in the 1776 two volume edition. The file is about 382 Kbytes, so it will take a while to load.] J. W. Ebsworth, 'Roxburghe Ballads', VIII, p. 187, 1895, called the broadside version 'a vile imitation' of Herd's text.

It appears the Herd's text is the original, from which all others are descended.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 24 Nov 98 - 06:41 PM

Last verse:

I came the last night drunk as I could be,
And I saw a monster standing in the door where my wife ought to be.
I called to my wife, my pretty little wife, "Explain this thing to me.
What's a monster doin' standin' in the door where you ought to be?"
She said, "You old fool, you blind fool, can't you plainly see?
It's nothin' but your own dear wife. Now, give a kiss to me."
Well, I've traveled this wide world over, ten thousand miles or more,
And I kiss my wife most every night, but I've got to get drunk before.

Don't ask me where I learned this, I cannot remember. I think it finishes the song off well, whether it is seven nights or five nights or four.

Roger in Baltimore

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 1-Aug-02.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Craig
Date: 24 Nov 98 - 09:31 PM

Roger in Baltimore-

I don't know if you have ever heard of a group called The Wayfarers. They put out an album called "The Wayfarers at the hungry i" in the early 60's. They did a version of Seven Drunkin' Nights with that ending, but they called it Old Fool.

Craig


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Jerry
Date: 25 Nov 98 - 12:46 PM

I've heard the version that Richard McD. Bridge refers to sung by Gregg Clarke from the Albany area (who knows more obscure songs than anyone!). He learned it from Michael Cooney.

It's the only version I've come across in which the husband (who's NOT drunk)gets his revenge (the trusty 12-bore). The best verse is the one that takes place in the bed, where the fellow spots someone's "bum." The wife replies that it's only a pumpkin, and the punch line is "But pimples on a pumpkin I never saw before." Gregg gives the name of the song as Pimples on a Pumpkin.

Jerry


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Subject: Lyr Add: SEVEN NIGHTS DRUNK
From: manylodges (inactive)
Date: 18 May 99 - 10:50 PM

This is a version heard at rendezvous called SEVEN NIGHTS DRUNK.

Well the first night that I came home so drunk I could not see,
Found a horse in the stable where my horse ought to be.
"Come here, my little wifey. Explain this thing to me.
How come a horse in the stable where my horse ought to be?"
"You blind fool, you drunken fool, can't you never see?
It's only a milk cow your granny sent to me."
I've traveled this world over, ten thousand miles or more,
But a saddle on a milk cow's back I never did see before.

Well the second night that I came home so drunk I could not see,
Found a coat on the coat rack where my coat ought to be.
"Come here, my little wifey. Explain this thing to me.
How come a coat on the coat rack where my coat ought to be?"
"You blind fool, you drunken fool, can't you never see?
It's only a bed quilt your granny sent to me."
I've traveled this world over, ten thousand times or more,
But pockets on a bed quilt I never did see before.

Well the third night that I came home so drunk I could not see,
Found a head on the pillow where my head ought to be.
"Come here, my little wifey. Explain this thing to me.
How come a head on the pillow where my head used to be?"
"You blind fool, you drunken fool, can't you never see?
It's only a cabbage head your granny sent to me."
I've traveled this world over, ten thousand times or more,
But a mustache on a cabbage head I never did see before.

Well the fourth night that I came home so drunk I could not see,
Found an a** in the covers where my a** ought to be.
"Come here, my little wifey. Explain this thing to me.
How come an a** in the covers where my a** ought to be?"
"You blind fool, you drunken fool, can't you never see?
It's only a pumpkin your granny sent to me."
I've traveled this world over, ten thousand times or more,
But a a**hole on a pumpkin I never did see before.

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 9-Jul-02.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Arkie
Date: 19 May 99 - 12:56 AM

In my version, the cabbage head has a gold tooth.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Graham Pirt
Date: 19 May 99 - 07:55 PM

Jack Elliot a miner from the Durham Coalfield with a wealth of songs used to sing this but his version ended up with the line about a rolling pin! Jack died back in the sixties


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Molly Malone
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 02:36 PM

This is an old thread I know, but had to add and ask....

First, a New Verse.

As I came home on a Thursday night,
As drunk as drunk could be,
I saw a wrinkle in the sheets
Where I thought I should be
And I called to my wife and I said to her
Would you kindly tell to me
What is that wrinkle in the sheets
Where I think I should be

Oh you're drunk you drunk, you silly ol' fool
But still ya' canna see
That's the lovely new kitten that
My mother sent to me

Well many's a day I travelled sure
A hundred miles or more,
But a kitten standin' at six foot two
I never saw before.

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 9-Jul-02.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Molly Malone
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 02:41 PM

Crud...lost formatting....and forgot the second half of the post!

I'm looking for other songs along this thread. Nothing down right disgusting, but more bawdy humor would be appreciated. I've been through the database, but if anyone has others I would greatly appreciate it.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: GUEST,PJ Curtis.
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 03:04 PM

There is even a wonderful blues version of 'Seven Nights Drunk' . Its called 'Three Nights Drunk' and was recorded by Sonny Boy Williamson(Rice Miller) for the Chess label in Chicago in the late fifties.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Gary T
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 03:26 PM

Molly, I'll try to remember any suitable songs I know, but none come to mind at the moment. However, while we've got "Seven Drunken Nights" here...

Years ago I was routinely hearing 6 verses from Irish groups that played here in Kansas City (and most of them were from Ireland--what a pity those days are gone). The bands would never sing the seventh verse, saying it was too risque for mixed company. The sixth verse is a light-hearted dig at the English, which ususally gets lots of laughs here in the U.S., but I don't know if it would be considered rude or offensive in England.

The first five verses are:
horse outside the door/milk cow/a saddle on a milk cow
coat beside the door/blanket/buttons on a blanket
pipe upon the table/tin whistle/tobacco in a tin whistle
boots beside the bed/chamber pots/laces on a chamber pot
head upon the pillow/baby/whiskers on a baby
In these five verses, each gift has been sent by her mother

The sixth verse:
As I came home on Saturday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a man run out the door, and it was after three!
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Who is this man run out the door, and here tis after three?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, it's a pity you canna see
Tis the English tax collector that the Queen has sent to me
Well, I've roamed this world for many a day, a hundred miles or more
(Pause briefly here to heighten the effect)
But an Englishman that could last til three I never saw before

I have never heard the seventh verse sung, but it was whispered to me once, and it is obscene. All I remember is the wife said it was a sausage--I'm sure you get the drift.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Molly Malone
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 03:40 PM

Actually, I've heard that as "a rise in the sheets" and "a hammer with a head like that I never saw before".

We do the Tax man verse out at the Ren Faire here in Phoenix. The crowds love it!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: paddymac
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 06:31 PM

As I think should be apparent from all the above posts, variations on this song (both as to lyrics and tune) are found in every english speaking culture, and since the theme is such a universal one, I imagine the song exists in some form in any culture with a folk singing tradition, irrespective of language. Has anybody heard it in languages other than english?


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 31 Jan 00 - 08:13 PM

It's a Child ballad, and it's on Ewan McColl's _English and Scottish Popular Ballads_, available from Smithsonian-Folkways.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: Lyr Add: ÇA JE N'AI JAMAIS VU (DRUNKEN NIGHTS)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Feb 00 - 02:55 AM

We sang "Five Nights Drunk" at a song circle several weeks ago. Our resident Frenchman, a guy named Marc, said he had sung the same song in French. Sure enough, he sang his French version with much enthusiasm at our next session - with a tune quite different from any I'm familiar with.
He sent me the lyrics and his translation today. He didn't know if this is a traditional French song, or if it's a recent translation of English lyrics. Anybody know? In his noted for #155, Child says a similar ballad was common in France, but these lyrics (below) don't fit any of the patterns he describes. Child also lists several German versions, and a few in various other European languages.
-Joe Offer-

ÇA JE N'AI JAMAIS VU!

L'autre soir en rentrant chez moi, j'avais bu un peu de vin
J'ai vu un cheval dans l'écurie, là où je met le mien
Alors j'ai dit à ma p'tite femme veux-tu bien m'expliquer
Que fait ce cheval là à la place de mon bidet?

- Mon pauvre ami, tu ne vois pas clair, le vin t'as trop soûlé
Ce n'est rien qu'une vache à lait que grand-mère m'a donné
- Dans ma vie j'ai vu pas mal de choses bizarres et saugrenues
Mais une selle sur une vache à lait, ça je n'ai jamais vu!

L'autre soir en rentrant chez moi, j'avais bu un peu de vin
J'ai vu un chapeau, là où j'accroche le mien
Alors j'ai dit à ma p'tite femme veux-tu bien m'expliquer
Que fait ce chapeau là à la place de mon béret?

- Mon pauvre ami, tu ne vois pas clair, le vin t'as trop soûlé
Ce n'est rien qu'une vielle casserole que grand-mère m'a donné
- Dans ma vie j'ai vu pas mal de choses bizarres et saugrenues
Mais une vielle casserole en feutre, ça je n'ai jamais vu!

L'autre soir en rentrant chez moi, j'avais bu un peu de vin
J'ai vu un pantalon, là où je pose le mien
Alors j'ai dit à ma p'tite femme veux-tu bien m'expliquer ça
Pourquoi ce pantalon lá est gris, le mien est toujours noir?

- Mon pauvre ami, tu ne vois pas clair, le vin t'as trop soûlé
Ce n'est rien qu'un vieux torchon que maman m'a donné
- Dans ma vie j'ai vu pas mal de choses mais ça reste un mystère
Un vieux torchon avec deux tuyaux et une fermeture éclair!

L'autre soir en rentrant chez moi, j'avais bu un peu de vin
J'ai vu une tête sur l'oreiller qui ne me ressemblait pas
Alors j'ai dit à ma p'tite femme veux-tu bien m'expliquer ça
Que fait cette tête sur l'oreiller, je n'crois pas que c'est moi?

- Mon pauvre ami, tu ne vois pas clair, le vin t'as trop soûlé
Ce n'est rien qu'un gros melon que grand-mère m'a donné
- Des prix au concours agricole, on peut dire que j'en ai eu
Mais une moustache sur un melon, ça je n'ai jamais vu!


(Translation from the French version)

The other night when I got home, I had drunk a little wine
I saw a horse in the stable, where I put mine
So I said to my little wife could you explain to me
What is this horse doing here instead of my nag?

- My poor friend, you can't see clearly, the wine got you too drunk
It's only a dairy cow that grandma gave to me
- In my life I have seen many bizarre and preposterous things
But a saddle on a dairy cow, that I have never seen!

The other night when I got home, I had drunk a little wine
I saw a hat, where I hang mine
So I said to my little wife could you explain to me
What is this hat doing here instead of my béret?

- My poor friend, you can't see clearly, the wine got you too drunk
It's only an old saucepan that grandma gave to me
- In my life I have seen many bizarre and preposterous things
But an old saucepan made of felt, that I have never seen!

The other night when I got home, I had drunk a little wine
I saw a pair of pants, where I put mine
So I said to my little wife could you explain to me
Why is that pair of pants grey, mine is always black?

- My poor friend, you can't see clearly, the wine got you too drunk
It's only an old dish towel that mom gave to me
- In my life I have seen many things but this remains a mystery
An old towel with two pipes and a zipper!

The other night when I got home, I had drunk a little wine
I saw a head on the pillow who did not look like me
So I said to my little wife could you explain to me
What is this head doing on my pillow, I don't think it's me?

- My poor friend, you can't see clearly, the wine got you too drunk
It's only a big melon that grandma gave to me
- Prizes at the agricultural fair, I got quite a few
But a moustache on a melon, that I have never seen!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: KingBrilliant
Date: 24 Feb 00 - 06:30 AM

My daughter & I sang the full 7 verses last week at a singaround. The version we sang uses the word 'thing' a lot in the last verse. Its one of my favourite songs.

Kris


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: GUEST,Sian in Wales
Date: 24 Feb 00 - 06:41 AM

It's sung in Welsh in Wales ... but I don't have the verses to hand. The last one involves "a dozen white candles." No imagination needed.

Strangely, our tune is a variation on Baa Baa Black Sheep....

Please. No jokes.

Sian


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Subject: Lyr Add: SEVEN NIGHTS
From: GUEST,Sohir
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 11:00 AM

heres the full version (as sung in irish pubs across the world)


SEVEN NIGHTS

ONE
As I came home on Monday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a horse outside the door, where my old horse should be,
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Why is this horse outside the door, where my old horse should be?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis only an old milk cow that my mother sent to me
Well, i've travelled the world over, a hundred miles or more
But a saddle on a milk cow I've never seen before

TWO
As I came home on Tuesday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a coat beside the door, where my old coat should be,
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Why is this coat beside the door, where my old coat should be?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis only an old blanket that my mother sent to me
Well, i've travelled the world over, a hundred miles or more
But buttons on a blanket I've never seen before

THREE
As I came home on Wednesday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a pipe upon the table, where my old pipe should be,
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Why is this pipe upon the table, where my old pipe should be?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis only an tin whistle that my mother sent to me
Well, I've travelled the world over, a hundred miles or more
But tobacco in a tin whistle I've never seen before

FOUR
As I came home on Thursday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw some boots beside the bed, where my old boots should be,
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Why are these boots beside the bed, where my old boots should be?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis only an old chamber pot that my mother sent to me
Well, I've travelled the world over, a hundred miles or more
But laces on a chamber pot I've never seen before

FIVE
As I came home on Friday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a head upon the pillow, where my old head should be,
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Why is this head upon the pillow, where my old head should be?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis only a little baby that my mother sent to me
Well, I've travelled the world over, a hundred miles or more
But whiskers on a baby I've never seen before

SIX:
As I came home on Saturday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a man run out the door, and it was after three!
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Who is this man run out the door, and here tis after three?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis the English tax collector that the Queen has sent to me
Well, I've roamed this world for many a day, a hundred miles or more
(Pause briefly here to heighten the effect)
But an Englishman that could last til three I never saw before

SEVEN
As I came home on Sunday night, as drunk as drunk could be
I saw a thing in my wife's thing, where my old thing should be,
So I said to me wife, me pretty little wife, Oh won't you tell to me
Why is this thing in your thing, where my old thing should be?
She said You're drunk, you're drunk, you silly old fool, so drunk you canna see
Tis only an old sausage that my mother sent to me
Well, I've travelled the world over, a hundred miles or more
(sorry lads i don't know this line does anyone else?)


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: KathWestra
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 11:55 AM

Sandy Paton alluded to this in another thread, but I'll mention it here. Joe Hickerson researched different versions of "Our Goodman" for his Ph.D. dissertation at Indiana University, which he never completed, probably because he kept finding new versions. His research documentation filled at least two file-cabinet drawers. At last count, he'd found at least 350 (Sandy thinks more than 400) distinct versions and was still hearing about new ones. I'm meeting him for dinner tonight, and will print out this thread for him -- bet Joe Offer's French version will be new to him!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Art Thieme
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 12:10 PM

Last night I come home as drunk as I could be,
Saw a thing inside the thing where my thing ought to be,
I said, "Come here my wife and explain this thing to me,
What's that thing doin' inside the thing where my thing out to be?"

"You old fool you silly fool, can't you plainly see,
That's nothing but a candlestick my mother gave to me."

"I've been all over this country---10,000 miles or more,
And a candlestick with balls I ain't never seen before."

(sometimes there's a benefit to having no cookie---but alas,,,)


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 01:40 PM

I am convinced that I once heard a final verse that involved two hedgehogs.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Irish Rover
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 05:15 PM

We do it as a thing in the thing is a hurlly stick with balls like that. I learned that song in belfast some thirty years ago.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Billy the Bus
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 07:08 PM

Too tired to go back through, but don't recall seeing the 7th verse punchline we used in the 60s....

But a gumboot/Frenchie/condom on a rolling-pin/sausage/candle-stick/etc, I never did see before.

Cheers - Sam


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Abby Sale
Date: 20 Apr 00 - 08:46 PM

The highly bawdy words in _Rugby Songs_ under the title of "The Traveler" intrigue me. It's currently in DT but I've wondered for a considerable time if this version has any provenance at at all.


PJCurtis: That is, indeed, a fine blues version Rice Miller does. My record has the title as "Wake Up Baby" which is also the refrain. Makes more sense that it should be this title as a blues song. This also is very interesting to me... there must be others but I can't think of a single other Child ballad that make it into the blues.


BruceO: The SMM version is the first I ever heard & remains my favorite. It's the one MacColl does on the original Riverside E&S Pop Bal. The words are nearly identical to Herd but MacColl claims to have learned this archaic text from his father. I'm interested in the tune you posted - it doesn't seem at all similar to MacColl's. One thing he does is a very effective spoken bit for the

A horse quo' she; Ay a horse quo' he. parts.

According to Goldstein's notes, the sog rapidly became an instant world hit, versions very soon appeared in Germany, Scandanavia, Hungary & elsewhere. This would tend to corroborate Herd as first printing. The great wide-spread popularity clearly began immediately after Herd's book. You would expect earlier Continental & American versions if there were any to find.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Lighter
Date: 12 Jun 14 - 09:45 AM

Is it my tin ear, or is the tune of the Dubliners' "Seven Drunken Nights" almost identical to that of the '40s pop hit "Dear Old Donegal" (Steve Graham, 1942)?

The Dubs said they got their version from "Seamus Heaney." Did they mean the famous translator of Beowulf?


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Jack Campin
Date: 12 Jun 14 - 09:56 AM

Yiddish version of the song;

Dos Daytshl


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Lighter
Date: 12 Jun 14 - 10:33 AM

Thanks for the link, Jack.

Not surprisingly, the Yiddish tune is rather different from any I can recall in English.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: GUEST,michaelr
Date: 12 Jun 14 - 07:10 PM

...But bollocks on a vibrator sure I've never seen before.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 12 Jun 14 - 08:52 PM

I don't think anyone has mentionerd the updated version by Brian Peters (who posts here sometimes). Available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r707RAFU6jo


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 13 Jun 14 - 01:01 PM

I had to look to see if Curmudgeon had ever posted to this thread, but I guess he hadn't.

As you know, most recorded versions of the song don't have seven nights' worth of verses. Back in the '70s and early '80s there was an older Newfie gentleman named John who lived over on Lucas Pond in Northwood, NH. According to Tom, John knew all seven verses and even sang them once in Tom's hearing (but Tom had probably had a drop taken and didn't write them down). John never sang the full song again in Tom's hearing (and may not even have sung the song again at musical gatherings where Tom was present).

John's wife and children were "good Christians" so John couldn't sing the song where they might find out that he had sung it.

Linn


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Jun 14 - 02:16 PM

Does anyone else have problems locating the break in the portmaneau word "weeknights"? I insist on seeing small men in armour, which of course means the missus must be Snow White...


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Jun 14 - 07:15 PM

No answers yet to my questions of June 12?

Anyone? Anyone?

Bueller?


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Jim McLean
Date: 20 Jun 14 - 05:01 AM

Lighter, There is a similarity with both melodies but I think probably it was Joe Heaney, not Seamus. John Sheahan would know as he is the only one of the original Dubliners still alive.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 20 Jun 14 - 05:09 AM

'John Sheahan would know as he is the only one of the original Dubliners still alive.'

Arguably, and he'd be the first to point that out, Sheahan joined the Dubliners when they were well up and running so was not part of the 'original' line-up.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: MartinRyan
Date: 20 Jun 14 - 05:18 AM

Definitely Joe rather than Seamus! Joe had several songs of that ilk.

Regards


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Jim McLean
Date: 20 Jun 14 - 04:16 PM

Peter, I was meaning in the context of when the song was made "famous' , i.e. in the charts. I was their roadie then.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Jun 14 - 06:10 PM

Thanks, folks. Presumably "Joe Heaney" is correct.

But here's what Mary Hardy says in her, um, chilling introduction to "More Dubliners Songs" (1979):

"The folk purists are, to this day, arguing about the origins of Seven Drunken Nights which took the Dubliners into the pop charts more than ten years ago. Seamus Heaney who gave it to them always insisted that the song concerned, not an unfaithful wife, but in fact a man who on returning home after some twenty years roaming the world in search of fame and fortune (the time honoured migration theme again), finds a fully-grown son, whose existence he'd never even suspected sharing the family bed.

"Even the most cursory study of social history will show that that is not in the least far-fetched."

Yeah...right....

But whether "Joe" or "Seamus," if the original singer had actually advanced such a theory, surely he could not have known the final two stanzas in any form.

Which would be just one *more* reason why Ronnie Drew never sang them.

I'm starting to think, by the way, that the resemblance of the tune to "Dear Old Donegal" may be trivial after all.


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: MartinRyan
Date: 21 Jun 14 - 03:34 AM

For the skinny, from the Joe Heaney Archive

Check here

Regards

p.s. I notice the initial posting to this thread was by "mryan", many years ago - not guilty, your honour!


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: MartinRyan
Date: 21 Jun 14 - 03:42 AM

Incidentally, note that the wrong page of music manuscript has been displayed!

Regards


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Subject: RE: seven drunken nights
From: Lighter
Date: 21 Jun 14 - 07:45 AM

Thanks, Martin. That nails it.

Like me, you're clearly one of those "folk purists" who prefer actual facts!


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