Complete Songs Of Robert Burns - online book

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IV. CONNUBIAL
423
Peace, I'm angrie now, now; Peace, I'm angrie now, Peace I'm angrie at the hert, and knows not what to doe, Wyfes can faine and wyfes can flatter: have I not hitt them now, When once they beginn they still do clatter : & soe doeth my wyf too. Wyfes are good and wyfes are bad: have I not, etc. Wyfes can mak their husbands mad : & so doe, etc.
Wyfes can sport and wyfes can play : have I not, etc.
And with little work passe over the day: & so, etc.
Wyfes hes many fine words & looks : have I not, etc.
And draw sillie men on folies hooks: and soe, etc.
Wyfes will not their meeting misse : have I not, etc.
A cup of sack they can well kisse : and so, etc.
Wyfes can dance and wyfes can lowp : have I not, etc.
Wyfes can toome the full wyne stowp: and soe, etc.
Wyfes can ban and wyfes can curse : have I not, etc.
Wyfes can toome their husbands purse : and so, etc.
Wyfes can flyte and wyfes can scold : have I not, etc.
Wyfes of ther toungs they have no hold: and none has myne, etc.
Wyfes they'r good than at no tym: neither is my wyf now;
Except it be in drinking wyn : and so is my wyf too.
Some they are right needfull evills: so is my wyfe now;
Wyfes are nothing elss but divles : and so my wyf too.
Now of my song I make ane end : etc.
All such wyfs to the divell I send : amongst them my wyf too.
Peace I'm angrie now, now : Peace I'm angrie now,
Peace I'm angrie at the hert, and cannot tell qt to dow.'
A somewhat licentious parody on the above is in Merry Drollerie, 1670,302, which is reprinted in Durfey's Pills, 1719, iv. 181. Neither the verses nor the tune have any reference \.ojohn come kiss me now.
The Dublin MS. lettered Airs and Sonnets is curiously enough a part of Wood's Scottish MSS. of Psalm and Hymn Tunes, 15661578, and it contains the earliest specimen of secular music written in Scotland. According to David Laing the secular songs and music are, however, not earlier than 1620. The sacred music, or Wood's portion in the Dublin volume, bears the title: " This is the fyft Buke addit to the four psalme Bukkis for songs of four or fyve pairtis . . . 1569,' and ends on page 33. Then follows a considerable number of Airs and Sonnets' Which are all notted heir with the Tennor or common pairt they are sung with.'
As bearing on the nationality of the air, we have the curious fact that there was a song popular in Scotland about 1560, probably that above quoted, and a fragment traditionally handed down and printed in 1769, while in England, the tune never had words attached to it. William Chappell in Popular Music, p. 147, could not find words, and printed with the air a stanza from the Godlie Ballads. The old form of the mnsic consisted of one measure ; the second part was added about the end of the seventeenth century. The tnne in our text is from the seventh edition, 1674, ofPlayford's Introduction to the Skill ofMusick, London, first printed in 1654. The music is also in Blaikies MS. 1692 ; Sinklers MS. 1710; Oswald's Companion, 1754, vi. 2; McGibbon's Scots Tunes, 1768, iv. 94; and printed for the first time with words in the Scots Musical Museum, 1792, No,;of. Burns directed the publisher for the music to McGibbon's Collection.
No. 211. There was a wife wonn'd in Cockpen. Scots Musical Museum, 1803, No. J39, signed ' B,' entitled Scroggam. ' Written for this work by