Cam Ye By the Kirk (2)
Came ye by the kirk,
Came ye by the steeple?
Saw ye our guidman
Riding on a ladle?
Foul fa' the body,
Winna buy a saddle,
Wearing a' his breeks,
Riding on a ladle!
Auld cutty pair, were ye at the fair? saw ye many
Saw ye our guid man riding on a beetle?
Shame tak his wrinkled face that woudna buy a saidle,
Wearing a' his breeks riding on a laidle.
(1) Chambers PRS (1847), 180; (1870), 19; Ford CR 22;
MacLennan SNR (1909), 34; NAE (1932), 14; Montgomerie
SNR (1946), 83 (No. 98). A dandling song.
(2) Maclagan GDA (1901), 256, from Argyll.
A nursery parody of the Jacobite "Cam ye o'er frae France?",
[Query: could the Jacobite song be an adaptation of an older
bairns' rhyme?] Whelps = "Guelph", the family name of the
house of Hanover. The Kittle Housie is Parliament; the Goosie
is the scrawny mistress of George I, Madame Schulemberg,
afterwards created Duchess of Kendal. (Another mistress, the
corpulent Madame Kilmansegge, countess of Platen, created
countess of Darlington, was called "the Sow", satirised in
many songs, most notably "The Sow's Tail to Geordie", in
Hogg, I.91, LV.) The blade who attempts to use Geordie's
loom (a common sexual metaphor) is the Swedish gallant count
Konigsmark, who had made advances (evidently not spurned) to
Princess Dorothea, wife of the Elector; he disappeared in
mysterious circumstances, and only when George II returned to
Hanover after his father's death and had some alterations
done to the palace was the body found--presumably strangled
just after he left the Princess for the last time. Hogg
conjectures that Montgomery's lady "may have been the lady of
Lord James Montgomery, who was engaged in a plot in 1695, and
who, it is likely, would be connected with the Jacobites."
Bobbing John is certainly the Earl of Mar.
Tune = Key to the Cellar (Bodleian MS., 1740), later in Niel
Gow's 2nd coll. (2nd ed. 1803), as The Marchioness of Tweed-
dale's Delight (3/2 hornpipe: d' l m l/d' l d' td'r't etc.). MS