Folk and Traditional Song Lyrics:
When I Was a Little Boy

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When I Was a Little Boy

When I Was a Little Boy

     1.
     When I was a little boy, striking at the studdy,
     I had a pair o' blue breeks, and O but they were duddie!
     As I strook they shook, like a lamb's tailie;
     But now I'm grown a gentleman, my wife she wears a
        railie!

     2.
     When I was a young man, I yarkit at the studdy, O,
     I had a pair o' grey breeks, and they were unco duddy, O;
     When I shook they shook, like a lammie's tailie, O,
     Gin my sang disna please, sing anither to yerselie, O.
     ________________________________________________________
     (1) Chambers PRS (1826), 297; (1847), 287; (1870), 155;
     NAE (1932), 29 [3 lammie's] , whence Montgomerie SNR
     (1946), 124 (no. 157) ["a wee boy" etc.].  Chambers
     identifies the protagonist as a John Callender, a
     blacksmith who worked at Edinburgh and Stirling Castles
     before the Revolution (of 1688). The railie of line 4 is
     a short-sleeved over-bodice made of finer linen than
     ordinary, worn on dress occasions--kirk on Sundays, etc.
     "To wear a rail was considered as a mark of wealth
     formerly" (E.D.D.).  With the incipit, cf. "Robin
     Tamson's Smiddy", by Alex. Rodger (1784-1846), to the
     tune The Cornclips, whose 18th-century text begins: "My
     mither men't my auld breeks, and wow, but they were
     duddie, O"; Rodger's text continues "She sent me to get
     Mallie shod at Robin Tamson's smiddy, O."
     (2) Forfar variant: Rymour Club Misc. I (1906-11), 212.
MS
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