The King and the Countryman

Melody - To the tune of "Slut"

Traditional ballad, c. 1640

There was an old chap in the west country,
A flaw in the lease the lawyers had found,
'Twas all about felling of five oak trees,
And building a house upon his own ground.
Right too looral, looral, looral
Right too looral la!

2. Now, this old chap to Lunnun would go,
To tell the king a part of his woe,
Likewise to tell him a part of his grief,
In hopes the king would give him relief.

3. Now, when this old chap to Lunnun had come,
He found the king to Windsor had gone;
But if he'd known he'd not been at home,
He danged his buttons if ever he'd come.

4. Now, when this old chap to Windsor did stump,
The gates were barred, and all secure,
But he knocked and thumped with his oaken clump,
There's room within for I to be sure.

5. But when he got there, how he did stare,
To see the yeomen strutting about;
He scratched his head, and rubbed down his hair,
In the ear of a noble he gave a great shout:

6. 'Pray, Mr. Noble, show I the King;
Is that the King that I see there?
I seed an old chap at Bartlemy fair
Look more like a king than that chap there.

7. 'Well, Mr. King, pray how d'ye do?
I gotten for you a bit of a job,
Which if you'll be so kind as to do,
I gotten a summat for you in my fob.'

8. The king he took the lease in hand,
To sign it, too, he was likewise willing;
And the old chap to make a little amends,
He lugg'd out his bag, and gave him a shilling.

9. The king, to carry on the joke,
Ordered ten pounds to be paid down;
The farmer he stared, but nothing spoke,
And stared again, and he scratched his crown.

10. The farmer he stared to see so much money,
And to take it up he was likewise willing;
But if he'd a known King had got so much money,
He danged his wig if he'd gien him that shilling!

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