Modern Street Ballads


Old Humphrey Duggins, he wanted a wife,
Resolving to lead a sober life;
A batchelor, he would have been a great rake,
So courting he went, for conscience sake.

The old Widow Warmpurse, she wanted a spouse,
No children had she, but she had a large house,
Six children had Duggins, though not very small,
So, thinks he, the large house will just hold them all.

So to court the widow, old Duggins began,
Says she, I’ve been told you’re a sad naughty man,
He replied, it ain’t true, and the widow knew not
That he’d one piccaninny, much less a whole lot.

When he’d married the widow, my dear, says he,
No doubt we shall have a large family,
I hope we shall, she then to him did say,
So the six little Duggins came home the next day.

The three Master Duggins, they made her a bow,
The three little Misses, they curtsied, How!
Says she, what means this? Why, said he, my old lass,
It’s only my little ones come home from grass.

You wicked deceiver, quoth she, I am dish’d;
Says he, for a great many children you wish’d,
And, as no one is certain their wishes to have,
I thought you might fancy a few ready made.

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