Cauld Kail in Aberdeen

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Melody -
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Robert Burns, 1793

Cauld kail in Aberdeen
And castocks in Strabogie
But yet I fear they'll cook o'er soon,
And never warm the coggie.

2. My coggie, Sirs, my coggie, Sirs,
I cannot want my coggie;
I wadna gie my three-gir'd cap
For e'er a quine on Bogie.

3. There's Johnie Smith has got a wife
That scrimps him o' his coggie,
If she were mine, upon my life
I wad douk her in a bogie.

4. My coggie, Sirs, my coggie, Sirs,
I cannot want my coggie;
I wadna gie my three-girr'd cap
For e'er a quine on Bogie.

5. There's cauld kail in Aberdeen,
And castocks in Strabogie;
When ilka lad maun hae his lass
, Then fye, gie me my coggie.

6. The lasses about Bogie gicht
Their limbs, they are sae clean and tight,
That if they were but girded right,
They'll dance the reel of Bogie.

7. Wow, Aberdeen, what did you mean,
Sae young a maid to woo, Sir?
I'm sure it was nae joke to her,
Whate'er it was to you, Sir.

8. For lasses now are nae sae blate
But they ken auld folk's out o' date,
And better playfare can they get
Than castocks in Strabogie.


The Bogie is a river which courses through beautiful valleys in Aberdeenshire. There are a few versions of this song. One version dates from David Herd's Scots Songs, 1769. Burns re-worked his version several times for George Thomson's Select Collection of Scottish Airs, 1793. He liberally combined Herd's version with his own.

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