Mudcat Café message #3245041 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #17061   Message #3245041
Posted By: Jim Dixon
26-Oct-11 - 10:12 AM
Thread Name: DTStudy: The Basket of Eggs
Subject: Lyr Add: BASKET OF EGGS (from Bodleian)
From a broadside in the Bodleian collection, Harding B 28(166):


Through Sandbach fields two sailors walking,
Their pockets being lin'd with gold,
And as together they were walking,
A pretty young woman they did behold.

A little basket standing by her,
She sat down to take her ease,
To carry it one of them ask'd her,
Her answer was, sir, if you please.

The sailor he took up the basket,
My basket's full of eggs, take care,
And if you chance to overwalk me,
At the half-way house, pray leave them there.

The sailors they soon overwalk'd her,
The half-way house they passed by,
When she saw that, she stepp'd up lighter,
And upon them she kept her eye.

They went into another ale-house,
And called for a pint of wine,
Says they what fools are in this nation,
A woman's left her eggs behind.

Come, landlord, bring us up some bacon,
Here's some eggs, let's have them dress'd,
Yet these two sailors were mistaken,
So you'll say when you hear the jest.

One of them stept up to the basket,
Thinking there some eggs to find;
But these two sailors were mistaken,
Instead of eggs there was a child.

The sailor he sat down a fretting,
To fret, says he, is all in vain,
For fifty pounds I'll give this baby,
If any body will it maintain.

A woman standing by the fire,
And hearing what the sailor did say;
I'll take your child as soon as another,
If down the money you will pay.

The sailor did pay down the money,
To speak, kind sir, I hope I'm free;
To tell the truth and not dissemble,
The father of the child you be.

To tell the truth and not dissemble,
The child it is both thine and mine,
As I was poor and loath to starve it,
To drop it yonder was my design.

Alas, said he, is this young Nancy,
That I danc'd with last Easter-day,
O yes, kind sir, and for your fancy,
The fiddler now at last you pay.

The little basket standing by them,
The sailor kick'd it o'er and o'er,
Since it is so I must be contented,
I never shall like eggs any more.