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144 THE JOVIAL HUNTER OF BROMSGROVK.
Whan thir twa loves had met thegither, 0 kissing to tak their fill,
The slaver that hang atween their twa gabs Wad hae tether'd a ten year auld bill, bill, Wad hae .tether'd a ten year auld bill. es
THE JOVIAL HUNTER OF BB.OMS-GROVE.
From Ancient Poems, Ballads, and Songs of the Peasantry of England, edited by Robert Bell, p. 124. This ballad, says the editor, " has long been popular in Worcestershire and some of the adjoining counties. It was printed for the first time by Mr. Allies of Worcester, under the title of The Jovial Hunter ofBroms-grove ; but amongst the peasantry of that county, and the adjoining county of Warwick, it has always been called The Old Man and his Three Sons—the name given to a fragment of the ballad still used as a nursery song in the north of England, the chorus of which slightly varies from that of the ballad : (see p. 250 of the same publication.) Mr. Bell imagines that there is an allusion to this ballad in As You Like It, i. 2, where Le Beau says
" There comes an old man and his three sons,"
and Celia replies,
"I could match this beginning with an old tale."